Proof-of-Work Versus Proof-of-Cognition

Can a proof-of-work (POW) protocol substitute or supplement a proof-of-cognition (POC) protocol?

Can a proof-of-work (POW) protocol substitute or supplement a proof-of-cognition (POC) protocol? It is possible, but not ideal. Humans in a POC protocol have equal mining power, instead using human biology to secure human conscience. If mining power were unequal (as is the case with POW), human consciences could be manipulated a debatably far worse outcome than a simple double spend in a currency system. By relying on machines rather than biology, the network can be overpowered by artificial intelligence producing their own mining hardware, or re-routing existing mining power to reap digital currency rewards (BGP hijacking). Furthermore, miners in a POW protocol are motivated by currency rewards for honest mining. Human-to-human transactions would need to be made feeless if humans were to continuously verify each other. Determining which verification webs were human-based would be difficult or impossible from a POW miner’s perspective.

Can POC replace POW? The simplest reason it cannot is that miners in a POC protocol would be able to inject bad blocks into the network, sending themselves currency when they had previously had sent it elsewhere. Since POC trades a valueless data structure, this risk is nonexistent.

Proof-of-work is ideal for currency, while proof-of-cognition is ideal for identity.

Reference: proof-of-cognition-implants , published May 2015. Disclaimer: Project Oblio’s mechanism does not rely on brain implants, but the mechanisms of action are the same. An early version of the paper provably exists in bitcoin address 13eeMVU5fXNfZdoBk5z4fEAbgSH9MawQ6H.

One thought on “Proof-of-Work Versus Proof-of-Cognition”

  1. Proof of Work helps maintain bitcoin transactions’ integrity and also prevent double-spending attacks but its drawback is its inefficiency making mining difficult, so that it would be expensive to fake.

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