The initial inspiration of the Noblis Pieces of Eight system was to create a way for autonomous machines to coordinate actions without human intervention but with a level of earned trust. Earned trust allows the different machines to be sure that the actions being agreed upon will be executed faithfully. The inspiration behind this sustainable extension of Pieces of Eight is to design a use case to incentivize more sustainable travel methods than single riders in autonomous personal vehicles.
What it does
The Noblis Pieces of Eight distributed ledger system keeps a record of interactions between multiple modes of transportation including buses, trains, bikeshares and rideshares, allowing them to build a record of earned trust to facilitate future coordination. The Pieces of Eight system can then support the background operations of a multi-modal trip planning app and remove the frustrations of "one seat only riders." One seat only riders use less sustainable methods of travel to avoid the unexpected delays of a missed transfer between modes. With the Pieces of Eight system, the multiple transit modes can coordinate actions and remove missed transfers and the delays they create, incentivizing more commuters to use sustainable transportation methods.
Additionally, the Pieces of Eight system supports microauctions for roadway priority, allowing for coordinating devices to determine themselves how the existing infrastructure is used. In this manner, an additional level to the microauction can be added as a Societal Benefit Coin, that can be used be vehicles that present a societal benefit on the roadway, like buses and other form of transit, which would get automatic priority over vehicles using the regular coin. The socially beneficial vehicle can then ensure priority throughout their trip, avoiding delays due to traffic or other issues, without having to compete with personal vehicles in the auction. This further incentives commuters to use sustainable travel methods as they can have quicker trips without paying for the priority themselves.
The Pieces of Eight blockchain is custom built to support both the trust and payment transactions. Whenever two machines coordinate using the Pieces of Eight system they rate the other participants on how well they shared information and followed the collective plan, these are then secured on a custom blockchain for that machine. That ledger of trust transactions is then used to build a trust report for an individual machine that can then be accessed by other participants in the Pieces of Eight system when they interact with that machine. Additionally, another ledger is established to show the coin transactions in a traditional application of a blockchain.
How we built it
Noblis developed the Pieces of Eight distributed ledger system prototype using the Python programming language. Currently the prototype blockchain is used to support the Robot Derby demonstration, which is a prototype demonstration of the benefits of Pieces of Eight using small autonomous rovers.
The code has not been released publicly. Private access has been provided to the MOBI challenge judges.