18.17.1. In several places I've referred to "deep connections" between things like crypto, money, game theory, evolutionary ecologies, human motivations, and the nature of law. By this I mean that there are deeper, unifying principles. Principles involving locality, identity, and disclosure of knowledge. A good example: the deep fairness of "cut-and-choose" protocols- -I've seen mention of this in game theory tesxts, but not much discussion of other, similar protocols. 18.17.2. For example, below the level of number theory and algorithms in cryptology lies a level dealing with "identity," "proof," "collusion," and other such core concepts, concepts that can almost be dealt with independent of the acual algorithms (though the concrete realization of public key methods took this out of the abstract realm of philosophy and made it important to analyze). And these abstract concepts are linked to other fields, such as economics, human psychology, law, and evolutionary game theory (the study of evolved strategies in multi-agent systems, e.g., human beings interacting and trading with each other). 18.17.3. I believe there are important questions about why things work the way they do at this level. To be concrete, why do threats of physical coercion create market distortions and what effects does this have? Or, what is the nature of emergent behavior in reputation-based systems? (The combinatiion of crypto and economics is a fertile area, barely touched upon by the academic cryptology community.) Why is locality is important, and what does this mean for digital cash? Why does regulation often produce _more_ crime? 18.17.4. Crypto and the related ideas of reputation, identity, and webs of trust has introduced a new angle into economic matters. I suspect there are a couple of Nobel Prizes in Economics for those who integrate these important concepts.
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