These are published chapters from my book The real Internet of Things, published on January 1st, 2017.
Once identity (supported by proper authentication) is thoroughly established, the next thing it’ll enable is a rich reputation infrastructure.
Reputation has been a crucial human attribute for thousands of years. Whether you’re in a village, a family, or a corporation, your reputation largely makes the difference between opportunity and obsolescence.
Universal Daemonization will greatly magnify the impact of reputation because it will now be global instead of local, and will be validated by third-parties.
This will turn reputation into one of the most important attributes of a person or business, since it’ll determine whether someone wants to interact with you or not—as a business, as an institution, and as an individual. Again, it’s not actually a new thing. It’s been the case since the beginning; it’ll simply convert to being represented digitally by being part of your daemon.
Reputation, just as in reality, does not mean just one score. It refers to the multitude of ways that various things are rated, combined with the validation of those ratings by trusted parties.
There will be many types of ratings:
- Reliability at work
- Quality of work
- Attention to detail
- Reliable when friends need you
- Knowledge of Victorian literature
- Sense of humor
- Skill with misbehaving dogs
- Attention to detail
- Film sophistication
- Loyalty to employer
- Ability to make complete strangers feel better about themselves
There will be dozens of primary ratings and thousands of subcategories.
One important component of these ratings is that updates to them will stream in continuously from the world. When you make someone laugh, when someone makes comments about you, when you receive a comment on a job you performed, or a performance you gave, etc.
These inputs will be captured by whatever is capable and filtered, interpreted, and weighed by organizations that specialize in ensuring only authentic adjustments are made to your reputation scores. These same companies will then sign/authenticate your scores for consumption, so that anyone looking at the ratings know they are authentic.
Ratings can also appear variably to different people, based on one’s weighing of different sources. If someone scores a 79 in Humor, for example, but nine of my closest friends, which I find hilarious, score them at an 85 or above, the score I see may show higher. The same will go for any other rating. Ratings from people you trust, or with similar perspectives, can adjust aggregate ratings.
Most importantly, these ratings will become key attributes of people. They will indicate (with varying levels of accuracy) how smart you are, how funny you are, how reliable you are, how loyal you are as a friend, how attractive you (and others) think you are, how strong you are, quality and level of education, how much money you make, etc.
People will largely control what their daemons are displaying about themselves, so many will choose not to display many things in their daemons, or to only display them to a restricted group of people. But it should fail to surprise that many will display significant amounts of data about themselves.
There are a number of key use cases for these ratings, but one of the most important ones will be the interaction with augmented reality. As people look at other people or objects they will see not just the object itself but information about that object that your DA thinks is most useful at that moment based on your current context.
Your DA may overlay data on an unaltered view of the object, or it may convey the information through modification of the object itself. It could give dangerous people horns, or kind people halos. It could show you highly-rated businesses in color while greying out low-rated options. The options are plentiful and we can expect them to be explored.
Signaling our capabilities to others is one of the most innate and powerfully human behaviors we participate in, we already do this constantly in a myriad of ways. Daemonization and augmented reality will simply make this activity more explicit and accessible.
- Our daemons will host and present dozens of ratings (and thousands of subratings) about us.
- Ratings will be validated by third parties so that DAs, people, and objects viewing your daemon will know which ratings to trust when making decisions.
- These scores will then be used by the world to make decisions about whether to interact with said person (or object) in various ways.