Allow me to briefly explain a simple scheme for the optimal development, elaboration, and maintenance of a decentralized system. Such decentralized systems include, but are not limited to: cryptocurrencies, academic research groups, and ant colonies.
In this organizational model, there are 4 stages placed around a clock. The clock symbolizes the fact that all organization is explicitly temporal - no logistical plan occurs save for the passage of time. The points around the clock are also the cardinal directions of a compass, symbolizing the orientation and direction of the project. The big and little hands of the clock are always rotating through the 4 stages. The little hand moves rapidly and repeatedly overpasses the slowly-moving big hand. The little hand represents the focus of each individual worker or subunit, the big hand represents the focus of the organization as a whole. If I could have represented a second- or day-hand in this drawing, I would have done so. Thus the following 4 stages are meant to be followed as a spatio-temporal fractal, not a "road map" (ugh). The 4 stages are:
1. Explore Options.
2. Design a System.
3. Evaluate Progress.
4. Fine-tune Parameters.
In the first stage ("Explore Options"), the individual or collective undergoes a process to discover what is possible. Individuals might do this on paper, small groups sometimes use brainstorming. In this stage, larger groups have the advantage of diverse and heterogeneous membership, allowing improved exploration of option-space In the second stage ("Design a System"), a quantitative yet flexible plan is decided upon. This is a challenging phase that seeks to integrate personal and collective ethical stances with socio-economic constraints. The third stage ("Evaluate Progress") is an ongoing proactive observation of self-function. Ideally the mechanisms of evaluation will have been prominently enshrined in the plan in the second stage. The fourth stage ("Fine-tune Parameters") involves updating, not reconstructing, aspects of the previous plan. Think "Evolution is a tinker, not an inventor" -- if things are truly terrible and really require reconstruction, then you can bring it up the next time we are all at stage 2.
The little hand moves through all these stages quickly, perhaps over the course of the day. In the morning, what can I do today? At lunch, how will I do it? At dinner, how well did I do? At night time, what will I do differently tomorow?
The big hand sweeps a slower circle through the stages. In the case of a human organization, theses stages might look like: What is the niche in the market that we are best able to fill, How will we fill this niche in the next 3 years, How will we know how well we are doing, and What kind of updates should we apply to our system to improve success?
In summary, the four fractal stages of decentralized optimization:
1. Explore Options. -- Outrospection
2. Design a System -- Revolution.
3. Evaluate Progress -- Introspection
4. Fine-tune Parameters -- Evolution
p.s. This drawing is Ethereum-centric because cryptocurrencies are exciting areas to explore many of these ideas about distributed socio-economic systems. Especially Ethereum, no? Inquire within.