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3 May 2005 | Draft

Simulation Possibilities for Complementary Currencies


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Economic modeling: Much has been done in terms of economic model simulation which should provide a basis for simulating complementary currency systems

Management games: Many different forms of management game exist, whether computer enhanced or not. These should provide a basis for the design of games for the management of complementary currencies, or the use of them by a number of people

Parameters: A major question is whether simulation would provide a means of detecting combinations of parameters that would point to more viable ways of operating complementary currencies

Contracts: The viability of a complementary currency depends on the types of contract open to participants. A key question is whether particular contractual constraints inhibit or facilitate the operation of the system. A simulation could be designed to test a range of contracts

Legitimacy: Simulations are based in part on mathematical formalization -- in this case on individual currency systems. The mathematical formalization should both help to identify unexplored complementary currency systems and to give legitimacy to any selected.

Neural network learning techniques: Neural networks are now being used to detect unusual strategies, as discussed by David E. Moriarty and Risto Miikkulainen (Discovering Complex Othello Strategies through Evolutionary Neural Networks, 2000) who argue that their approach could also be used to find new strategies and heuristics in other domains including planning. Hendrik Moraal (Counterintuitive behaviour in games based on spin models, 2000) has shown that mixing of two losing strategies may lead to a winning one, but also that the mixing of two winning ones may lead to a loss. Mixing of a losing and a winning strategy may give unexpected results.

Multi-system integration: Simulation techniques should make it possible to explore not just a single complementary currency but also situations in which there might a multiplicity of such systems, possibly effectively competing or partially collaborating.

Architecture to support more fragile levels of trust: Simulations could be used to explore complementary currencies with more fragile, or counterintuitive, levels of trust -- provided the architecture ensured adequately supportive interlocking. The progression from more cumbersome over-designed forms of architecture to much lighter (modern) forms might well provide parallels for the development of "lighter" forms of currency system that are nevertheless far more robust (cf tensegrity systems)

Variety of features: Simulation opens the way to systematizing the variety of possible features. The ability to mix and match such features might prove a valuable means of enabling potential participants to design a contractual interface of their choice -- as well as enabling designers to explore a variety of feature mixes.

Counterintuitive possibilities: Would a sufficiently general simulation enable the feasibility of an initiative like the Grameem bank to become apparent

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