Incentivised Mesh Networking with Blockchains

Caleb James DeLisle

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Cryptography gives us the ability to have law without police. For example when I send you an encrypted message, we don't need law enforcement to prevent the letter carrier from looking in it.

Blockchains extend that power by giving us the ability to have business interactions without accountants. For example when you have bitcoin in your wallet, you don't need an auditor to check that it's really there.

But for something so secure, you may wonder why blockchain has been the domain of so many scams. I claim this is not a flaw in the technology but rather the fault of malfeasants who misrepresented what was actually being promised, and as the technology matures, I think blockchain will become far less corrupt than more traditional forms of business.

7 years ago I set out to create a turn-key solution for anyone who wanted to build a mesh network, and by the numbers I have failed. I created an interesting piece of software which makes secure networks with minimal setup, and there are about 1000 nodes in the public network, but its deployment in actual wireless meshes has been slim to none.

People building real world meshes need technology that works perfectly, or has the flexibility to let them go in and manually fix it when it doesn't. Right now we have the latter but the former is still a dream. But the dream of solving mesh network problems once is still not dead.

I will present a project which I am now working on to make an open blockchain called Mantle. Mantle fundamentally consists of 3 things: A means to tokenize and trade bandwidth, a bandwidth-hard proof of work to create demand that will drive investment in network infrastructure, and an elected network steward which will receive 20% of newly mined Mantle for the purpose of investing in the network.

Open protocols, network neutrality and free speech have taken us so far in so little time. But today it seems more and more that every political group considers something or other to be censorship-worthy. The internet is a great gift which the previous generation gave to us, the least we can do is to encrypt and decentralize it.