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Assembly at Stake

I bet that you are a liar.

If we can reliably tell honesty from dishonesty, there is no reason to refuse such a bet. Or, if we put it the other way around, you could bet on yourself being honest. If there were someone stupid enough to accept all these bets, then everyone would be betting, and everyone would be honest. Mathematicians call it game theory, we call it proof of stake, and everyone else calls it common sense.

This is the main line of defense of Assembly. Dare to misbehave, and Assembly will severely drop your trust score and take your tokens away. Play nicely, and Assembly will trust you a bit more and grant you a tiny reward. Every validator has its trust score and tokens at stake, carefully tracked by Assembly.

When looking for validators, chain owners publish an offer with the minimal trust score and the pay. Higher trust score means higher pay, so all validators have a reason to correctly process as many smart contracts as they can: that would raise their score.

Staking, Minting, and Inflating

The overall security of Assembly depends on the total value at stake, so it balances rewards to keep them attractive enough to have around three quarters of all tokens at stake at any time. To afford these rewards, Assembly mints new tokens out of thin air.

Minting means inflation. If your tokens lie idly, then they slowly lose value over time. But if you contribute to the network's security by staking them, then your wealth will grow.

There is a catch, however. Only validators can meaningfully misbehave, so only they need the proof of stake, but they own nowhere near three quarters of the token supply. The solution is to let everyone else stake on validators — you just have to find one that you can trust.

Blowing the Whistle

Proving fraud is trivial with blockchains. They are deterministic, meaning that every time you calculate the same transactions with the same input you get the same result. If someone shows you a different output, then you found a liar.

Still, Assembly needs to know about a potential fraud to investigate it, so it lets anyone file a report in exchange for a reward.

Validators have to calculate their chain all the time anyway, so they would casually spy within their own committee. Victims of a fraud would of course report it too. There could even be professional fishermen, actors who travel the network in hopes of an accidental catch.

First among Equals

Assembly itself is a smart contract chain, and in its principle it is no different from any other. Like any blockchain, it stores token accounts and transactions between them. It keeps the list of all registered validators and their trust scores, and has its own job board. Smart contracts slash stakes, give out rewards, process reports, and create and disband validation committees, including Assembly's own committee.