playing time: 5 min • by KoinStreet
loading... let's play!

The financial system today is built on the Trust of human driven systems to verify transactions of fair trade for all members participating. This has led to inefficent and expensive systems. With most funds managed in one place, we trust humans to be responsible rather than the system itself.

Because funds are managed by one entity such as banks, when they fail, everyone fails. Whether they get hacked or funds are misappropriated, millions of people are affected similar to the 2008 Financial Crisis.
How can Crypto help me?
Of course, banks are not the only
time markets, institutions, or entire
democracies have misused power given to them. There seems to be a common theme with central authority leveraging control of a network designed for all.

And so......Bitcoin was created in 2009

An open, transparent and direct system — Designed without Human Intervention !
Using software we can now build new system on the internet that distributes the responsibility of 3rd party due dilignence onto computers. This enables the ability to write rules that can not be broken and altered by humans. The software used for these systems is called
Blockchain Learn more
Throughout this simulation, you will have the ability to create and remove block connections Lets pratice drawing and removing connection between blocks.
draw to connect scratch to   disconnect when you're done playing around, let's continue
Blockchain are networks run by computers that share data with other computers in the network.
The more people participating, the stronger The Network becomes.
Connect the blocks! This is how transactions are linked in the blockchain
cool, got it This is how data is tranferred on the blockchain. One computer records a transaction and sends the tranaction to all the computers in the network.
cool, got it
Well, you're about to see the answer yourself..in the next simulation
Let's put aside the Bitcoin thing for now. Below: we have a Person with some information. The way systems are designed today, people are only able to tranact only after 3rd parties verify the tranaction. For this verification, 3rd parties will usually take a transaction fee or collect data for performing it's due diliegence.
Start the Payment Simulation!
Note: despite the cost associated with for 3rd party services, they are very much needed in today's system to protect the integrity of the system. The existing system was designed by humans for humans. However, now we are able to design fair systems using computers Hope -->
Now we can replace 3rd parties with computers creating a direct payment system! PUZZLE TIME!
Computers share tranaction data with other computers making all tranactions final and permanent. Connect the networks so data is shared amongst everyone.
(Hint: All Networks must be connected)
You got it!
With computers being able to record and transfer data on our behalf, we no longer need to trust a 3rd party with our tranaction. So instead of giving your money to a bank to send out on your behalf, you can now directly send the money yourself.

This is a very important concept to grasp to better understand the design of the new system. Engineers working on this system call this "Keys". The only person who has access to your funds is you because only you hold a secret "key" to that account. Every Digital Wallet will have two keys: A public key to recieve money and a private key to use the funds. This is similar to a school locker. Everyone has one code to find their locker and one code to unlock their locker. !”
Let's bring back "thresholds" and the binge-drinking example! When you played with this the first time, people didn't change their behavior.

Now, let's simulate what happens if people start drinking when 50%+ of their friends do! Before you start the sim, ask yourself what you think should happen.

Now, run the sim, and see what actually happens!
Unlike our earlier "fake news" contagion, this contagion does not spread to everyone! The first few people get "infected", because although they're only exposed to one binge-drinker, that binge-drinker is 50% of their friends. (yeah, they're lonely) In contrast, the person near the end of the chain did not get "infected", because while they were exposed to a binge-drinking friend, they did not pass the 50%+ threshold.
The relative % of "infected" friends matters. That's the difference between the complex contagion theory, and our naive it-spreads-like-a-virus simple contagion theory. (you could say "simple contagions" are just contagions with a "more than 0%" infection threshold)
However, contagions aren't necessarily bad — so enough about crowd madness, what about... ...crowd wisdom?
Here, we have a person who volunteers to... I don't know, rescue people in hurricanes, or tutor underprivileged kids in their local community, or something cool like that. Point is, it's a "good" complex contagion. This time, though, let's say the threshold is only 25% — people are willing to volunteer, but only if 25% or more of their friends do so, too. Hey, goodwill needs a bit of social encouragement.

← Get everyone "infected" with the good vibes!
NOTE: Volunteering is just one of many complex contagions! Others include: voter turnout, lifestyle habits, challenging your beliefs, taking time to understand an issue deeply — anything that needs more than one "exposure". Complex contagions aren't necessarily wise, but being wise is a complex contagion.
(So what's a real-life simple contagion? Usually bits of trivia, like, "the possum has 13 nipples") Now, to really show the power and weirdness of complex contagions, let's revisit... ...an earlier puzzle
Remember this? This time, with a complex contagion , it'll be a bit tougher...
Try to "infect" everyone with complex wisdom!
(feel free to just hit 'start' and try as many solutions as you want) HOT DANG
Now, you may think that you just need to keep adding connections to spread any contagion, "complex" or "simple", good or bad, wise or mad. But is that really so? Well, let's revisit... ...another earlier puzzle
If you hit "start" below, the complex contagion will just spread to everyone. No surprise there. But now, let's do the opposite of everything we've done before: draw a network to prevent the contagion from spreading to everyone!
You see? While more connections will always help the spread of simple ideas, more connections can hurt the spread of complex ideas! (makes you wonder about the internet, hm?) And this isn't just a theoretical problem. This can be a matter of life... ...or death.
The people at NASA were smart cookies. I mean, they'd used Newton's theories to get us to the moon. Anyway, long story short, in 1986, despite warnings from the engineers, they launched the Challenger, which blew up and killed 7 people. The immediate cause: it was too cold that morning.
The less immediate cause: the managers ignored the engineers' warnings. Why? Because of groupthink. When a group is too closely knit, (as they tend to be at the top of institutions) they become resistant to complex ideas that challenge their beliefs or ego.
So, that's how institutions can fall to crowd madness. But how can we "design" for crowd wisdom? In short, two words:
← Too few connections, and an idea can't spread.
Too many connections, and you get groupthink.
Draw a group that hits the sweet spot: just connected enough to spread a complex idea!
Simple enough! The number of connections within a group is called bonding social capital. But what about the connections... ...between groups? As you may have already guessed, the number of connections between groups is called bridging social capital. This is important, because it helps groups break out of their insular echo chambers!
Build a bridge, to "infect" everyone with complex wisdom:
Like bonding, there's a sweet spot for bridging, too. (extra challenge: try drawing a bridge so thick that the complex contagion can't pass through it!) Now that we know how to "design" connections within and between groups, let's... ...do BOTH at the same time! FINAL PUZZLE!
Draw connections with the groups to spread information from the top group to the whole network. Hint: For groups to be connected, one computer needs multiple connections!
Congrats, you've just drawn a very special kind of network! The Networks ability to pass information to the entire network is profoundly important! These netwrks are called... “Distributed Networks”
"Here we can take a look at the effects of the blockchain on networks."
Instead of having isolated control over networks, we can break down the isolation and distribute the control over all the participants in the network
Centralizied Decentralizied Distributed By definition, engineers call this system Distributed Ledger Technology This allows the transfer of data to occur in one part of the network but the tranactions is recorded by all computers in the network. This essentialy makes it impossible to go back and change historical data as every computer in the network must be changed as well. So, with cheaters in any system, building systems with DLT encoded minimizes the cost of human errors. ok, let's wrap this up...
(pst... wanna know a secret?) Contagion: simple complex The Contagion's Color: Select a tool... Draw Network Add Person Add "Infected" Drag Person Delete Person CLEAR IT ALL (...or, use keyboard shortcuts!) [1]: Add Person     [2]: Add "Infected"
[Space]: Drag     [Backspace]: Delete
IN CONCLUSION: it's all about...
Trustless Systems & Ownership
Trustless Systems: Before Bitcoin, trust was given to humans and corporations to make sure the transactions that occured on the system's they created were of fair value. Now we can build trust into systems to ensure fair valued transactions for anyone using that network.
Ownership: With the invention of a peer to peer system, user's now have full control over their assets and can transact with anyone in the network directly. With the removal of the middleman, user's have more control over their assets and can use them without the need of an intermediary's approval.
So, what about our question from the very beginning? How can Crypto...
...help me?
From Money to Data
assets can be transfered on the internet in a direct and transparent manner,
without the delays and costs associated with traditional 3rd party methods.
This underlying technology allows for the first time people to deal with one another without relying on a 3rd party.
However that does not mean abandoning your personal responsibility
to understand how to use this new system to its fullest before using it.
With the ability to control our own assets, comes with its fair share of ownership responsibility.
We are working on creating a simulation on how to
use this system. We hope you try it :)
“Blockchain is the tech. Bitcoin is merely the first mainstream manifestation of its potential.”
To be continued
created by
follow our telegram · follow our Twitter

thanks for all who played

Would love to hear any Feedback

Please take this Survey, we promise it's less than a minute!

Or Email us Directly at business@koinstreet.com for feedback!

WIN start simulation reset & re-draw Fan-made translations: What the, no fan-made translations exist yet?! (original in English)

What other kinds of connections are there?

For the sake of simplicity, my simulations pretend that people can only be connected through friendships, and that all friendships are equal. But network scientists do consider other ways we can be connected, such as:

Directional connections. Alice is the boss of Bob, but Bob is not the boss of Alice. Carol is the parent of Dave, but Dave is not the parent of Carol. "Boss" & "parent" are directional relationships: the relationship only goes one way. In contrast, "friends" is a bidirectional relationship: the relationship goes both ways. (well, hopefully)

Weighted connections. Elinor and Frankie are mere acquaintances. George and Harry are Best Friends Forever. Even though there's a "friendship" connection in both cases, the second one is stronger. We say that these two connections have different "weights".

Just remember: all these simulations are wrong. The same way any map is "wrong". You see the map on the left? Buildings aren't gray featureless blocks! Words don't float above the city! However, maps are useful not despite being simplified, but because they're simplified. Same goes for simulations, or any scientific theory. Of course they're "wrong" — that's what makes them useful.

What other kinds of contagions are there?

There are so, so many ways that network scientists can simulate "contagions"! I picked the simplest one, for educational purposes. But here's other ways you could do it:

Contagions with Randomness. Being "exposed" to a contagion doesn't guarantee you'll be infected, it only makes it more likely.

People have different contagion thresholds. My simulations pretend that everyone has the same threshold for binge-drinking (50%) or volunteering (25%) or misinformation (0%). Of course, that's not true in real life, and you could make your sim reflect that.

An ecology of contagions. What if there were multiple contagions, with different thresholds? For example, a simple "madness" contagion and a complex "wisdom" contagion. If someone's infected with madness, can they still be infected with wisdom? Or vice versa? Can someone be infected with both?

Contagions that mutate and evolve. Ideas don't pass perfectly from one person to another the way a virus does. Like a game of Telephone, the message gets mutated with each re-telling — and sometimes the mutant will be more infectious than the original! So, over time, ideas "evolve" to be more catchy, copy-able, contagious.

I wanna learn more! What else can I read and/or play?

This explorable explanation was just a springboard for your curiosity, so you can dive deeper into a vast pool of knowledge! Here's more stuff on networks or social systems:

Book: Connected by Nicholas Christakis and James Fowler (2009). An accessible tour of how our networks affect our lives, for good or ill. Here's an excerpt: Preface & Chapter 1

Interactive: The Evolution of Trust by Nicky Case (me) (2017). A game about the game theory of how cooperation is built... or destroyed.

Interactive: Parable of the Polygons by Vi Hart and Nicky Case (also me) (2014). A story about how harmless choices can create a harmful world.

Or, if you just want to see a whole gallery of interactive edu-things, here's Explorable Explanations, a hub for learning through play!

“virtually all [college] students reported that their friends drank more than they did.”

“Biases in the perception of drinking norms among college students” by Baer et al (1991)

“The Majority Illusion”

“The Majority Illusion in Social Networks” by Lerman et al (2016).
Related: The Friendship Paradox.

“strong statistical evidence that smoking, health, happiness, voting patterns, and cooperation levels are all contagious”

From Nicholas Christakis and James Fowler's wonderfully-written, layperson-accessible book, Connected (2009).

“some evidence that suicides are [contagious], too”

“Suicide Contagion and the Reporting of Suicide: Recommendations from a National Workshop” by O'Carroll et al (1994), endorsed by the frickin' Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC).

“some evidence that mass shootings are [contagious], too”

“Contagion in Mass Killings and School Shootings” by Towers et al (2015).

Also see: the Don't Name Them campaign, which urges that news outlets DO NOT air mass murderers' names, manifestos, and social media feeds. This spreads the contagion. Instead, news outlets should focus on the victims, first responders, civilian heroes, and the grieving, healing community.

“The world's financial institutions fell for such a cascade in 2008.”

“Lemmings of Wall Street” by Cass Sunstein, is a quick, non-technical read. Published in Oct 2008, right in the wake of the crash.

“the complex contagion theory.”

“Threshold Models of Collective Behavior” by Granovetter (1978) was the first time, as far as I know, anyone described a "complex contagion" model. (although he didn't use that specific name)

“Complex Contagions and the Weakness of Long Ties” by Centola & Macy (2007) coined the phrase "complex contagion", and showed the important differences between that and "simple contagion".

“Evidence for complex contagion models of social contagion from observational data” by Sprague & House (2017) empirically showed that complex contagions do, in fact, exist. (at least, in the social media data they looked at)

Finally, “Universal behavior in a generalized model of contagion” by Dodds & Watts (2004) proposes a model that unifies all kinds of contagions: simple and complex, biological and social!

“the possum has 13 nipples”

arranged in a ring of 12 nipples, plus one in the middle


This Orwell-inspired phrase was coined by Irving L. Janis in 1971. In his original article, Janis investigates cases of groupthink, lists its causes, and — thankfully — some possible remedies.

“bonding and bridging social capital”

These two types of social capital — "bonding" and "bridging" — were named by Robert Putnam in his insightful 2000 book, Bowling Alone. His discovery: across almost all empirical measures of social connectiveness, Americans are more alone than ever. Golly.

“bridging social capital has a sweet spot”

“The Strength of Weak Ties” by Granovetter (1973) showed that connections across groups helps spread simple contagions (like information), but “Complex Contagions and the Weakness of Long Ties” by Centola & Macy (2007) showed that connections across groups may not help complex contagions, and it fact, can hurt their spread!

“the small world network”

The idea of the "small world" was popularized by Travers & Milgram's 1969 experiment, which showed that, on average, any two random people in the United States were just six friendships apart — "six degrees of separation"!

The small-world network got more mathematical meat on its bones with “Collective dynamics of small-world networks” by Watts & Strogatz (1998), which proposed an algorithm for creating networks with both low average path length (low degree of separation) and high clustering (friends have lots of mutual friends) — that is, a network that hits the sweet spot!

You can also play with the visual, interactive adaptation of that paper by Bret Victor (2011).

“[small world networks] describe how our neurons are connected”

“Small-world brain networks” by Bassett & Bullmore (2006).

“[small world networks] give rise to collective creativity”

“Collaboration and Creativity: The Small World Problem” by Uzzi & Spiro (2005). This paper analyzed the social network of the Broadway scene over time, and discovered that, yup, the network's most creative when it's a "small world" network!

“[small world networks] give rise to collective problem-solving”

See “Social Physics” by MIT Professor Alex "Sandy" Pentland (2014) for a data-based approach to collective intelligence.

“[small world networks] helped John F. Kennedy (barely) avoid nuclear war!”

Besides the NASA Challenger explosion, the most notorious example of groupthink was the Bay of Pigs fiasco. In 1961, US President John F. Kennedy and his team of advisors thought — for some reason — it would be a good idea to secretly invade Cuba and overthrow Fidel Castro. They failed. Actually, worse than failed: it led to the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962, the closest the world had ever been to full-scale nuclear war.

Yup, JFK really screwed up on that one.

But, having learnt some hard lessons from the Bay of Pigs fiasco, JFK re-organized his team to avoid groupthink. Among many things, he: 1) actively encouraged people to voice criticism, thus lowering the "contagion threshold" for alternate ideas. And 2) he broke his team up into sub-groups before reconvening, which gave their group a "small world network"-like design! Together, this arrangement allowed for a healthy diversity of opinion, but without being too fractured — a wisdom of crowds.

And so, with the same individuals who decided the Bay of Pigs, but re-arranged collectively to decide on the Cuban Missile Crisis... JFK's team was able to reach a peaceful agreement with Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev. The Soviets would remove their missiles from Cuba, and in return, the US would promise not to invade Cuba again. (and also agreed, in secret, to remove the US missiles from Turkey)

And that's the story of how all of humanity almost died. But a small world network saved the day! Sort of.

You can read more about this on Harvard Business Review, or from the original article on groupthink.

“we influence [...] our friends' friends' friends!”

Again, from Nicholas Christakis and James Fowler's wonderful book, Connected (2009).

“be skeptical of ideas that flatter you”

yes, including the ideas in this explorable explanation.

★ Sandbox Mode ★

The keyboard shortcuts (1, 2, space, backspace) work in all the puzzles, not just Sandbox Mode! Seriously, you can go back to a different chapter, and edit the simulation right there. In fact, that's how I created all these puzzles. Have fun!