I need to create "Smart Nodes" as a means to improve information distribution on the Internet. Smart Node is also a means of achieving Axion's vision of "get humanity free from any constraints, optimize their pursuit of happiness". This blog explains what a smart node is like.
I worked in Jakarta, Indonesia as a newspaper reporter for 2010-2015. The spread of smartphones progressed tremendously while I was living in the country. It became a flood when low-priced smartphones reached a certain level of quality, as the background was that Blackberry had originally spread in that country.
It was a time when many people had a vision that "connections (connectivity) brought by smartphones will make emerging / developing countries grow strongly." Nicholas Negroponte, founder of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Media Lab, planed to distribute "One Laptop per Child". He aimed to provide each child with a rugged, low-cost, low-power-consuming, connected laptop.
But the smartphone unconsciously realized what he intended. Supply chains centered on China's coastal areas such as Shenzhen continue to supply large quantities of cheap, high quality handset-shaped computers to the market. The spend increased income, they choose smart phones before any durable consumer goods. In Indonesia, the development of microfinance has caused people with a monthly income of around 400 smartphone.
Another game changer is the development of wireless networks. Telecommunications companies in emerging countries generally provided cheaper Internet connections than telecommunications companies in developed countries. Recently, it has attracted international attention that India's Reliance group has been distributing "connectivity" very cheaply. Google launched a balloon for cheap connections and Facebook flew an unmanned plane. SpaceX, OneWeb, and Amazon believe "Internet satellite" is the ultimate solution.
Eric Schmidt, former executive chairman of Google and Jared Cohen's "The New Digital Age: Transforming Nations, Businesses, and Our Lives" was a symbolic book. The book argues that as digital technology continues to spread to the world's poorest areas, new economic opportunities expand and digital technology helps these areas of the world to escape poverty. The book explained the online "virtual world" becomes more closely related to the "real world", with the rapid expansion of connectivity, resulting in that not only work efficiency but also health, education, and quality of life improve tremendously
Their claim can be viewed as "a position talk as Google emerges as a tech company," but within certain limits, some are still coming true. In recent years, mobile Internet has grown in emerging countries, and business models that leapfrog businesses developed in rich countries, are growing rapidly. Such a business gives people who do not have a bank account digital wallet, or give producers who have been exploited by middleman the opportunity to connect with consumers directly.
Even in the low-income village of Jakarta I often visited, people used mobile to share important information at incredible speed, and bought and sold goods and services through social and messaging apps. People were able to instantly know new business opportunities and various daily life knowledge through human network enabled by mobile. In a society where birthplaces have a very important meaning, mobile phone help people to maintain social connections with acquaintances and relatives from the same town, who scattered in Jakarta, an urban area 40 million people living in,
Side effect of mobile Internet
However, I realized that this "mobile revolution" had side effects. It is a dissemination of low quality information. I faced a huge amount of fake news in the 2014 Indonesia presidential election campaign. Social medias ware full of contents that slander hostile candidates based on fake news. In the social message function, messenger application and SMS, incite texts of religion and ethnic discrimination have been sent endlessly mainly.
The problem is that fake news in the election was always racist or religious discriminatory. It was very dangerous for Indonesia, or “Imagined community” made up of 300 race and 6 religions at least. I was fluent Indonesian language speaker at the time, and had so many Indonesian friends. So I could experience the nearly same situation as Indonesian voters. It was a nightmare.
During dictatorship age in Indonesia (1967-1998), the people was controlled through television, newspaper, "secret police" and military intelligence unit. People's control has been restrained to some extent since the democratization of 1998, but in the 2014 election, the traditional method has been revived. I assume more effective large-scale incitement than dictatorship era is available by combining mobile channels with a traditional method.
Mobile has brought a big upside to emerging economies. It has led to the development of digital and native business models that are significantly more efficient than extant types, and indeed bring an extension of user benefits. On the other hand, there is also a downside. The main factor is the circulation of a lot of low quality information as I have mentioned so far.
Mobile Internet continues to circulate information that deviates from conventional wisdom at a tremendous pace, and it produces extremely dangerous effects, especially when it comes to elections. What I understood at that time is that It is easy to influence people's decision making process, by inciting people's emotions distributing false information when people are becoming emotional on two different conclusions as presidential election. Later, it seems to be clear with American presidential election and referendum on Brexit in 2016 where bunch of fake news was assumed to affect the result. In certain circumstances, people's decisions are likely to be cracked through mobile.
Disinformation makes decision-making hard
Decision making has the process of "inference" and "decision". When we make decisions, the information to infer is always incomplete and the environment is always dynamic. The probability of success or failure for an action that will be taken is not clear in advance. It is not always the case that you know the probability after you made an action. While it may be possible to partially infer the probability later, there may be cases where no significant information can be obtained even after an action.
Even in a game where conditions are limited and all information is revealed to players like shogi or go, the machine learning model can not find the hand with the highest odds from the vast search space at every turn.
Even in a game where conditions are limited and all information is revealed to players like shogi or go, the machine learning model can not find the move with the highest probability to win from the vast search space every turn. In games with incomplete information, such as poker and mahjong, probability estimation is more complicated and players are asked for acrobatic reasoning. Players must create a strategy that incorporates high uncertainty and change it immediately at every turn. And the world we belong to is more complicated than these. There are frequent and numerous opportunities for such complex decisions in your life.
First of all, we are also animals with cognitive bias. It is a typical example that we tend not to capture objective gains and losses in the future under risky conditions. It is well known that human tend to be influenced by losses rahter than gains and to prioritize loss avoidance action.
There is an intuition, a fast system under the control of emotions, and a slow system that does not start without conscious effort and follows a reason that requires energy to trigger. The unconscious judgments made immediately are strongly influenced by the unconscious biases and beliefs in oneself. There is a tendency for awareness to look for evidence that you can confirm that you believe once. There are a wide variety of biases, such as freference affect the estimation of risk or merit, or applying causality to the variability of random events.
Well, in such difficulties, if the information given in the first place is wrong or is forged with maliciousness, decision-making can not be successful.
How media has been advancing
Media is understood as "mediating information." Modern media consumption started from mass media type as television, radio, and newspaper. This type is very effective way for authority to distribute information to the people. When authority has wrong intent or suffers from lack of capability to generate qualified informations, mass media become absolutely dangerous equipment. You know the media has been used to drive people to war and build dictatorship in human history.
After commercial internet came out, network type media consumption appeared. Nowadays people can generate contents and distribute by themselves easily. Mobile phone has driven people-to-people media consumption. This was revolutionary. But there is a problem. This information distribution network is so vulnerable for attacker with intent to deliver fake news, and this happened all over the world now.
For example, the figure below is called "scale free network". A network structure in which some nodes have a large number of links while most are connected to only a few nodes. If a node with a large number of links is evil or lacks the power of information analysis, false information can easily be circulated. It is a powerful theory that many evil nodes acting at the same time were the main causes of fake news mass circulation.
Solution is building "Smart Nodes" in the network that choose information and convert it to high value-added essence. It translates widely distributed information into the language of the community, creating an upside of a network of information people are included in.
If the major nodes have advanced information analysis and reconstruction capabilities, and if the information that can be transmitted to other nodes connected to the major nodes can be advanced, then "preferred distributed information consumption" is constructed.
"Smart Nodes" analyzed a large amount of malicious information generated by fake news websites, social bots, emotional crowds, or spammers who are trying to make money with advertising, on behalf of people. Smart nodes stop the circulation of false information and convey to people the background on which the false information was made.
Smart Nodes is not a network type vulnerable to corrective incitement, nor is it a mass media type vulnerable to authority getting out of control. Smart Nodes could provide stable information consumption on the internet.
This is not so new. Books, magazines, bookstores, and libraries have played this role in the history. However, in the Internet far superior to "pre-digital" in terms of information distribution volume and liquidity, the effective function to play this role has not been built yet.
People's time spent for digital media continues to expand every year. In particular, mobile contact has been filled up to fine-grained free time since the spread of mobile. If that time is wasted because of poor quality content, it is a huge loss too. Moreover, a mechanism to make the loss a habit is working behind the service. In addition, during elections, it can be an amplifier of populism and act as a propaganda machine. In other words, human beings create a very stupid equipment fooling themself.
The way people consume content has also returned to private places like messaging and chat in recent years. The trend is “From viral to tribal”. During the viral era, snack contents such as "What Colors Are This Dress?" are liked, but it was mostly thanks to the Facebook and Twitter algorithms. Now people are starting to form "tribes" and what kind of information is preferred there?
From unhealthy snack to supplement
We need to hand out supplements to improve people's "health" rather than snacks. We want to shift media contacts on the Internet from the current "consumption" to the "continuous learning experience". We desire to shift the use of media on the Internet from the current "consumption" to the "continuous learning experience". The background is described in detail in our vision and strategy.
My idea is different from the idea behind the business model that turns people into data generators and exposes people to targeting ads. Under the current mechanism, users will be flooded with content floods. The mechanism of social media to continue the situation "you can not predict when the external reaction is brought" is very similar to the gambling where the reward is brought in irregularly.
The distribution of content is driven by the dynamics of the Internet economy. It is an advertising model. Many of the applications and websites you use are run by advertising.
The downside of content distribution supported by Internet advertising is that content providers have an incentive for clicks and views.
Unfortunately, it is easier to make money on the current Internet if you make sensational content. The best response for you ad-type service providers was to create fake news and spread it with social bots and targeted ads. Here is the bad point of the current system.
In today's Internet, content that stimulates a few seconds of instantaneous interest is easy to monetize, and high quality content that requires long-term interest is hard to monetize. The best strategy for website owners is to create low-cost fake news and spread it through social and advertising. This is a defect in the ad model.
Axion uses a mechanism to get money from you and to return it for your success. Because there is no influential third party in this scheme, Axion only invest in the user's success, that is, evolve the user into a mess (this is our mission). And you can firmly hold the financial basis (cash flow, ordinary income) to keep working for the users.
Axion uses a mechanism to get money from you and to return it for your success. Because there is no influential third party in this scheme, Axion can focus its investment on the user's success: evolving people insanely (this is our strategy). And Axion can firmly hold the financial basis (cash flow, recurrent revenue) to keep working for the users.
Then I think that "compatibility" with the "tribe" or the community is important for the new generation content distribution.
The community is considered to be a stabilizer to the negative aspects of crowd behavior such as fake news distribution. The members are connected within the community, forming a swarm with an intermediate size between macro and micro called clusters.
There are a number of powerful nodes in the cluster depending on the size. I think that the human society is more stable if the world is divided into such clusters and communicated with each other rather than connected to one big network. It is as if an organ differentiates into cells, and each one is covered by a cell membrane, which distinguishes between those that should be taken in and those that are not.
There are various elements that form "cells". One is geographical conditions. People are still deeply interested in the geographical space and the communities that they define. For example, people will be highly interested in the festival being held in the area where they live, and the incidents and accidents that affect their lives.
Then specific interests also form a community. This is the gift the Internet has given us. You can connect with people who have the same interest without creating coterie magazines, exchanging letters, or relying on specific gathering points as people did in the past. Musicians, for example, now hold live events more often than before, and people who like the music have come to visit more often. This is a phenomenon caused not by large networks but by clusters with cohesion.
In addition, specific skills and expertise are also important community formation factors. These play an important role in socioeconomics, and are links of people that are useful for discussing solutions when issues of which expertise is questioned emerge. There is no doubt that the speed of internal communication and the speed of response to external requests are improved thanks to the Internet.
In addition, specific skills and expertise are also important community formation factors. These play an important role in socioeconomics, and are connections of people who are useful in discussing the areas where their expertise is required. There is no doubt that the speed of internal communication, and the speed of responding to external requests, has been dramatically improved thanks to the Internet.
We want to support the diverse communities that exist in our network. Society has produced "influencers", but in fact its impact is bizarre. It is our view that people's lives can be enriched with a system that relies on clusters with more advanced information processing ability, rather than "influencers system" that relies on unstable individuals.
Conclusion: create effective smart nodes to improve information distribution
A smart node is a robust node that cooperates with clusters that aggregate in the information world, which moves from "broadcast", which is a centralized information distribution function using conventional mass media, to a connection that connects people. It is to make good nodes. It is the ultimate goal that the quality of information boosts the quality of human decision-making and promotes the advancement of human intelligence.
Information distribution is defined by the vague word “media (media)”, and it can not be denied that poetic arguments have been made over the long term for this word. By adopting more practical approaches and scientific methods, we may be able to explain media consumption in more plausible terms.
The penetration of the Internet connection into the world is still in progress. Further progress is desired with the adoption of 5G. Increasing the performance of low-end smartphones is more dramatic than that of high-end smartphones, which is driving the diversification of communications in emerging countries.
The beginning of this project starts with the habit of clipping newspapers since I was in junior high school. When I was a high school student, I read several newspapers in the library of the school every day.
The beginning of this project starts with the habit of scrapping newspapers since I was in junior high school. When I was a high school student, I read several newspapers in the library of the school every day. Newspapers need political, economic and social knowledge to read. It was quite desirable for children's learning.
However, after experiencing an intern in a newspaper company and working as a newspaper reporter, I began to wonder how the newspaper works in society.
I feel that the mass media is unilaterally pushing information based on the interests of some privileged people to the ordinary people. I feel that the media sometimes responds to various social problems not by rationality but by emotion. I feel that the mass media got to have an arrogance that distorts information easily.
The world is changing in a tremendous momentum, but it seems that information distribution system does not make significant progress. The downside of the mobile Internet has appeared in the fake news issue. Now is the time to create smart nodes and bring people "optimization of freedom and pursuit of happiness".
Axion Technologies K.K.
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Image via NASA on Unsplash