I have been toiling away on SOVRINTown as a solutions architecture for quiet some time now. Only recently I felt ready to commit the Solution Architecture to Archimate 3.0 having solved the Technology Architecture in same, for an adjacent problem of renting IDLE IT resources to Applications on Demand in the Colo and DC.
So what is SOVRINTown and why is the Treasury component so important?
SOVRINTown Treasury- eVoter Controlled Smart Contracts for 100% eGoverance Transparency of Government Budget Spend using Cryptocurrencies & Metals as Locale Currency/Bond Collateral. The real Distributed Ledger ‘DLT’ Super Power
Most of us have experienced voting in a political party candidate to a government position, only to have them support and implement some legislation or fund some project which was not part of their original platform.
Political Accountability 0
Voter Frustration 10
Not a pretty score.
DLT Distributed Ledger Technology has ’til now, a hidden, never been used @ scale, ‘super power’, which needs to be brought to the forefront to fix the above recurring problem found everywhere. That super power is the ability for pretty much any DLT to support 100% accurate eVoting and eGovernance (TRansparent political platform execution in the form of transparent disbursements gated by the DLT platform by an off-chain multi-signature Smart Contract), a super power never before seen in “End to End” action.
A “2For”: Dual Killer ‘Co-Dependent’ Apps — eVoting and eGoverance
So you get what you voted for. What a novel idea.
So why have we not seen more of this ‘Dynamic Duo’ implemented to free us all from the ‘bait and switch’ antics of politicians who dutiful serve their masters to keep us all in modern day serfdom? (while we collectively watch our buying power, rights and freedoms evaporate daily from a tsunami of fiat money printing.)
Well in principle, the value delivered by two such killer apps on the DLT is easy to understand, in practice it has been anything but simple to design, implement, let alone get a politician to promote such eVoting and eGoverance @ scale.
eVoting which is both Secure and Transparent is not easy. Doing the same online is even harder, despite what the Swiss might think. ;)
Take a look at the Archimate represented Archimate 3.0 representation of the Technology Architecture on which SOVRINTown will be built (see below) and anyone can see there is a bit of complexity there in the Technology Layer, especially when no OSI Layer 4 or 3 IP Protocols are used “in State or Province”.
One angle, as pursued by AGORA of Switzerland, an EPFL CERN spin-off is to make such a monumental NEW Value, earn a return.
Ok, entrepreneurs rejoice.
Now who is going to pay for AGORA?
Yup, the supposed benefactor.
You, the voting populous and rate payer body for the ‘locale’ wishing to hold a transparent vote using AGORA.
The only problem being, AGORA forgot about the ‘accountability’ part of the vote over the elected body term, so ensure the wining majority voting body get’s what it voted for, their favourite political platform items.
Clearly eVoting on it’s own, is not the answer. More Access, Network and even Storage security is required and that requires computing power, lots of it.
Most all voters want an honest vote, 100% Government transparency, honest platform budget spend and 100% accountability of the political class and the public service. (only achieved today at the end of a Bong Pipe, some might say.)
eVoting paired with eGovernance is most certainly that answer, coupled with a secure Technology Layer, which is impossible to achieve using the OSI Layer 4 and 3 protocols of the TCP/IP protocol suite, by virtue of the fact there are so many UDP, TCP and IP exploit holes and attack surfaces still open, it makes anyone’s ‘head spin’ while making lots of VC funded cyber security software firms rich trying to close them.
So what does a good Dual Killer App design model look like for the eVoting/eGoverance combo value pack served up online? Is there a solution our there to “to take us all to that promised land of 100% Government Transparency, Honest Voting with 100% Political Accountability and Platform Delivery” (with enforceable consequences when the political class and/or public servants do us wrong)? Let’s take a look at how SOVRINTown is evolving.
SOVRINTown: The eVoter Smart Contract Manager Trustless eVoting/eGoverance “ Local Treasury” Design Model.
These days, trust is not inherently part of the ‘political scene’ and, maybe even perceived by the electorate to be less prevalent in the more visible and related public servant sector acting out political agenda ideologies and economic game plans.
Which is why trust-less, immutable (where you need it) DLT Distributed Ledger Technology makes much sense, @ Scale, as the backbone of any state or province eVoting & eGovernance backbone, in order to ‘honestly’ and ‘transparently’ keep track of all eVoting and eGoverance records/transactions/actions mutable and immutable.
So let’s dig a little bit deeper at what the high level, that is, what most voting populous requirements are likely to be, to make the Dynamic Duo Solution of eVoting/eGoverance take form as a useful Solution Design, so the ‘whiz-bang’ developers of the “Blockchain’ movement can spring into action and make it so (First creating and Acceptance Plan chock full of Test Cases with pass/fail metrics, which leads to a small team of a developer and few programmers, ascribing a Software Architecture to match, using 100% Open Source, OTS “Off the Shelf”, proven components which are secure and can scale). ;)
SOVRINTown Requirements: By the People
Well This is chicken and egg story, unless of course you are the USA with the Smartest Paper Contract in the world protecting the People, the US Constitution. I am Canadian for the record and well, need I say more other than our system is archaic and ruled by the vested interesting serving the UK crown and those around them helping them and themselves to Canada’s wealth, most of it garnered from the sweat and efforts of honest, yet mostly asleep Canadians.
The US will lead the way in this eVoting market segment “By the People”, with full transparent audits like the one going on in Arizona right at the moment. Thereafter how the US Republic “re-make” proceeds in setting up new secure and transparent eVoting & eGoverance systems, will most certainly become the blueprint for same, in the rest of the world, Canada included.
SOVRINTown Acceptance Plan: For the People
An Acceptance Plan in software terms is really a set of Test Cases with Pass/Fail Metrics aligned to a set of Stories, how the system, any system, where the ‘story’ set explains how that system should work and what the outcome will be.
Mandatory , To “Nice to Have” should be at the core of any acceptance plan, this time, signed off by the voting populous via referendum in state or province with a significant majority (say 67% ?) , to ensure the pass/fail metrics lie up with the expectations of the requirements.
Now who might build such test cases? A collection of vetted senior QA engineers, that’s who. (No developers, architects or programmers allows. ;) )
SOVRINTown Solution Architecture- Minimal Viable Service “MVS”
And in steps the “Architect”. (No white suits please, or flipped up collars and white TV style, white rimmed geek glasses). Seriously, the Solution Architect is not necessarily the Software Architect, in fact, that person should be more than familiar with the end user requirements and understand the end user and markets they are serving, with a deep understanding of voting and eGoverance in general and the operations and support systems and workflow needed for both. Even better if they have a technical architect’s brain with a Data Architect’s insight. Even better still if they have a developer background from the not too far distant past. Meaning, this person has been doing the former for about five years or more and the latter for at least 5 years and worked in both sectors for a similar period. Hmm. Maybe 35 or 40 years old or more at minimum you think? Yup. Why? To increase your chances of success, voting body collective.
Now a days, such capabilities get deployed as services in the Cloud and or among several Colo sites, to take advantage of market coverage, rapid time to market and lower IT infrastructure costs and ensure greater physical security and power sourcing. In the case of SOVRINTown eVoting, that component of the solution will run often to support voting of many different types. Likewise the same is true for SOVRINTpwn eGovernance, a component of the solution with many interfaces to 3rd party systems ( again more on this later)
SOVRINTown Software Architecture- Use Cases to match the Test Cases
While this part is still very much in progress, we are in fact making some progress we will publish on github soon in the readme.txt file.
You can already hear the ‘squawks’ from the “ready , fire, aim” developer set will be loud and onerous. Well such ‘sulking-prone’ senior developers coveting that Software Architect Title may “exit right” after about 2 minutes of interviewing for such work and will be ‘SOL’ in my books.
It’s more likely the voting body is better to go with proven developers building/improving/maintaining existing relevant performant open source components which, have been proven to work in other applications DLT, both public and private, operating with low power consumtion PoW “Proof of Work” Consensus. (More on this later)
SOVRINTown Open Source Components:
“Sorting the Wheat from the Chaff”
Open Source and the ‘licensing strings attached’ (not to mention who is parked beside the project guiding it), requires the Software Architect building the eVoting System to be familiar with SCA Software Composition Analysis tools which help sort out the licensing dependencies, the legalistic part of the biz of open source. Meaning all Open Source is not free of licensing encumbrances the way some might think.
Other considerations when selecting useful open source components as the Software Architect to implement (that’s right) the Solution Architect’s creation (integration of capabilities needed to meet the requirements and pass the acceptance plan test case metric mandatory minimums) include:
- Key Members of the Open Source Community- are they still there contributing
- Who do the Key Members work for and how much of their time and energy is spent on the project
- Is the project mature, or in a state of flux (rapid growth, lots of bugs, lots of open issues, etc..)
- Who has forked the project and what are they using the soft or hard fork for?
Next Steps for SOVRINTown?: Archimate 3.0
Archimate is seen by some in the software development biz as being somewhat pendantic, which it is for sure, however is damned through and gets everyone on the same page sooner or later. I encourage developers, programmers, DevOps and QA teams alike to get on board with Archimate. Try in for free via Google Suite by adding in the diagrams.net app to your collaboration environment and select the Archimate Template of Symbols you need and get going, its that easy.
Expect the same Archimate 3.0 diagrammatic representation as above to show up in the SOVRINTown Github repository sooner rather than later, all comments and contributions welcome.
Because we really need to fix this eVoting and eGovernance BIG problem fast so it also works conveniently online , the day of the election, with almost no mail-in ballots allowed, birthed transparently and securely as the parallel ‘sibling’ of the paper voting systems.
That’s all for now
- over and out.