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Re: MUD anyone?

On Tue, 27 Aug 1996, Jon Leonard wrote:

> I've been planning to run a MUD like that, at mud.umop-ap.com port 2121.
> I just don't have enough coded to be worth announcing yet.

Cool. What's it running under? I was planning to base it around the latest
version of the Nightmare library for MudOS, which I just downloaded. If I
can get a copy somehow I could start hacking on it. 

> Pseudonyms
> Anonymous digital cash (issued by any pseudonym, not just "banks")
> Public and private keys
> Secret sharing
> Anonymous broadcast & message pools
> Anonymous markets

All sounds like good stuff to me... DC Nets as well, of course. I guess we
should also simulate the Net somehow, with Web servers, email, etc. 
Though the Nightmare library apparently lets you create Mud objects which
can access the Web so perhaps we can use the real one somehow (with the 
obvious security implications).

What else?

Protection Agencies
Escrow Agencies
Private Law Courts (probably controlled by players rather than the
Reputation Agencies

> What am I missing?  Should there be direct support for Jim Bell's
> assasination markets?  It'd provide a means of demonstrating its
> ineffectiveness as a means of social control.

I think it should be incorporated, but I think that people can set them up
easily themselves. Perhaps we should have an NPC-run 'Assasins Inc' which
would run the lottery, and then players could do the actual 'wet work'. 

But yes, I'd really like to see how this would work in the game. As I 
said I'm thinking of this more as a semi-scientific experiment than a 
pure game. We have some idea of how this stuff should work in theory, but 
little of how it works in practice.

I do think though that we'd have to enforce some kind of rule against
'disposable characters', otherwise people could simply create a new
character every time they were killed trying to assasinate someone. There
would need to be some disadvantage to just going in guns-blazing and being
killed ten times in a row. 

> I think that for purposes of simulation, it's reasonable to model
> cryptographic primitives in a "Trust the server" mode, because you
> need to trust the MUD server anyway (unlike a government), and it
> puts a much lower load on the CPU.

Yep, I agree. I would like to include the real protocols but it's going to
be far too slow. So we could create, say, remailer objects, anonymous
digital cash objects, etc. As long as they have the same properties in
'SimAnarchy' as they would in real life then the actual behind the scene
mechanics don't matter. We could, perhaps, allow characters to break 
protocols if they could accumulate enough processing power.

I don't know how low a level we'd want to go to. I think that having an
explicit group of remailers (and 'IP rerouters') would be a good idea as 
it would allow people to try to crack messages and perform traffic analysis. 
Some remailers could be run by NPCs (some of whom would be trustworthy and 
some wouldn't), others by the players themselves (with or without logging 

I'd like to also include some way by which players could write 'software'
even if they weren't able to create new objects for the game. So they could
perhaps write front-ends for remailers and give them away or sell them to
other players.

> There's also the question of log policy.  Having run a MUD for a few
> years, I want to keep logs for bug detection.  A declared policy that
> they aren't released for n years would work though.  Opinions, anyone?

Part of me thinks that we should explicitly state that anything may be
logged and used in sociological research. Perhaps we could create some
kind of secure protocol to allow users to connect without revealing their
real identities, so that it wouldn't matter if they were logged?

Anyone want to set up a mailing list for this discussion?

|Reverend Mark Grant M.A., U.L.C.	       EMAIL: [email protected]  |
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