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Bootstrapping a Distributed Computational Economy With Peer-to-Peer Bartering

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Executive Summary

This paper presents an architecture for distributed computational economies based on peer-to-peer bartering. The architecture is based on the position that computational economies ought to be bootstrapped based on a layer of simple and robust resource exchange. The architecture is comprised of three pieces: Resource discovery, secure resource peering, and bartering. Together, these pieces address the end-to-end problem of describing, discovering, and exchanging distributed resources in a secure and decentralized manner. Key in the approach is the ability to securely exchange resources across delegated paths of trust. This, combined with secure resource peering, allows peers to engage in resource exchange with directly connected peers, in addition to peers whom they do not have direct bartering relationships with.

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