Cryptonetworks and Cities: Analogies

Cryptonetworks are often compared to firms, people, or even coral reefs — but, observes a16z crypto partner Ali Yahya, they might be much more similar to cities. Where does that analogy fit, and where does it break down? And what can we learn from how cities both emerge from the bottom up and are motivated by a top down vision/design  and apply to open source networks such as those in crypto?

In this video — guest hosted by freelance software engineer (and blockchain app developer) and writer (and urban watcher) Devon Zuegel — a16z crypto partners Denis Nazarov, Jesse Walden, and Yahya share their thoughts on “rough consensus”; shared myths and beliefs; modularity vs. monolithic design; and the rivers and riverbeds that people build cities and code around.

At the end of the day, it’s all about mass coordination at scale… but what are the incentives for building the infrastructure and ecosystem, for running experiments but also determining governance as well?