Proof of Work #26

Hi folks,

Sorry for the late update this week—waited because I’m at zcon0 this week (the first Zcash conference ever!) and I wanted to be able to include some thoughts about this event! Some thoughts:

  1. Zcon0 is one of the best conferences I’ve been to in years, and reinforces my thinking that the only conferences worth going to are the technically focused ones. It’s not that only tech gets discussed, but that the scammy people don’t bother showing up.

  2. Zcash has a seriously great technical community around it, and has successfuly (so far) resisted the allure of taking shortcuts to boost performance or coin price at the expense of decentralization.

  3. Zcash is actually shipping—“overwinter” a somewhat boring but important infrastructural update is live, and “sapling,” a super not-boring update that will allow private transactions from low-power devices like mobile phones appears to be on track for November. The Zcash team is also rapidly scaling up and will have the bandwidth to ship a lot more this year.

For centuries before we had centralized digital money that enables panoptic surveillance of people’s transactional history, we transacted mostly with cash and similar instruments that provide a reasonable degree of privacy for individuals. Remembering this is pretty important, because the narrative that private digital payments (Zcash, mobilecoin, grin, monero etc!) are going to usher in some unknown and terrifying era of unbridled anarchy is being pushed pretty hard by some people on the regulatory side of things, and it’s historically just not true.

As a sidenote, my complaining about crazy high valuations for pre-product startups in the space in the last PoW seems to have touched a nerve, and a lot of people wrote to say they feel the same way. Hopefully this turns around soon—in the meantime, I’m incubating a few interesting projects :)

Something I’ve been mulling over for a while is what burn rates and HR spends should look like for blockchain projects— I’m pretty convinced that most projects are way too conservative with their spending. If you can raise more money more easily than a traditional startup, especially if you are holding a lot of that raise in something that will appreciate in value as you ship code, it makes sense to pour gas on the fire as soon as you have anything that approaches product-market fit. I was blown away to hear from one of my favorite portfolio co’s that they lost a key hire to Facebook because they couldn’t match an offer—the company in question has a war chest that could fund a decade of development! It makes sense for projects to pay over market if they have to in order to get the best people—this is the reality of a talent market where demand exceeds supply by an order of magnitude.

More next week, thanks as always for reading, and please feel free to ping me on Twitter (DMs are open) if there is some way I can make PoW more useful for you!

Ryan from FOAM

  • Released 'FOAM MainNet Preview: Token Curated Registries for Geographic Points of Interest' to highlight some of the front end design decisions made for the main net application launching later this summer. 

  • Along side our partners at Token Foundry we have been workshopping and coding an updated Proof of Use smart contract functionality for tokens purchased in the FOAM token sale. This entails a lock up based on use of the protocol for the intended utility, not speculation, with tiers of use that must be proved based on the amount of tokens purchased.

  • Added Elasticsearch indexing to all IPFS documents supporting foam tcr app. This means we can serve content efficiently to users/developers using sophisticated search techniques. Additionally we can better support any third party, IPFS enabled applications looking to host relevant documents generated by our tcr application.

  • Cliquebait now lets you adjust the default Wei allocation, as well as upgraded to support Geth up to v1.8.11

  • Presenting our functional programming web3 stack at 'The State of Haskell in Ethereum' and presenting FOAM at Curation Markets/ TCR Berlin 

Evan on Ethereum

Coulter from MakerDAO

  • This week we released the Maker Foundation Proposal. With the first ever public MKR vote approaching, this proposal gives a look into how Maker is thinking about achieving decentralized governance. The team encourages review and discussion, so please share any questions & comments with us. 

  • At a recent San Francisco ETH Dev Meet Up, we gave a first look at our new CDP interface.

  • Announced a collaboration with 8x Protocol to bring recurring payments on the blockchain with Dai. 

  • We're still hiring and recently added a variety of new positions that we're looking to fill. If you feel like there's a match, please reach out. 

Paige & Zooko from Zcash

  • final user outreach, documentation and ecosystem prep for Overwinter activation on Monday (block 347500); 

  • planning presentations and workshops for Zcon0; 

  • progress on user guide translations, network observer, testing Sapling on testnet; 

  • Weekly update - June 22nd, more details here.

Ari from Decentraland

  • We’ve just launched a new and expanded Documentation site.

  • Our team has released version 4.0.0 of the SDK, featuring UX improvements and our migration from Three.js to Babylon.js.

  • We have also released version 0.10.0 of the Marketplace, with improved performance and a Map API for third parties.

  • We are also in the process of QA testing the LAND Mortgage feature (in partnership with RCN) and we have begun work on a new smart contract for auctions in the Marketplace.

Zaki from Cosmos

Phil from MARKET Protocol 

  • Released v0.2.0 of our dApp (release notes here)

  • Released v0.0.2 of MARKET.js (release notes here)

  • Our jobs page is now live 

Robert from Compound

  • Received preliminary security audit results for the core Compound protocol; two informational issues (and zero low, medium, or high severity issues) identified so far

  • Completed remaining protocol functionality, including the Liquidate function. In the process of finalizing test cases and code review for the Liquidate function

  • Began designing the price feed (Oracle) for the protocol

  • Updated the dApp web interface, used to easily interact with the Compound protocol, to final protocol ABI

  • Signed lease and completed preparations to move into our first office in July

  • Held several productive meetings with token sponsors interested in creating money markets for their token

Arthur from Liquidity.Network

  • This week we announced our educational platform Achievement.Network. It works as gitbook plugin and consists of an online editor where users can type their code. The Blockchain used on Achievement.Network is a self-hosted one, to make it faster than testnet and avoid congestion.

Doug from Livepeer

JZ from Decred

  • Politeia (Pi) our blockchain anchored proposal system has gone live on testnet. Here are examples of a proposal, and a vote. We encourage people to put it through its paces, so feel free to submit proposals.

Bowen from Hydro/

Jutta from Parity Technologies

James from Vertcoin

Antonio from dYdX

  • Implemented order book and margin calling service

  • Working on a smart contract to make lending as simple as sending a token (WIP PR here)

  • Interviewed 3 design candidates. We're actively hiring for design and engineering roles in SF

Brendan and Nadav from Dharma

Jimmy on Bitcoin

Diego and Riccardo for Monero

  • No update.

Mitchell from Blockstack

  • Token system audit + Fixed a couple of low-risk issues discovered from Coinspect's security audit

  • Implemented multisig and segwit-p2sh transaction support in the CLI

  • Closed issues 831 and 834, pertaining to subdomain names not resolving intermittently and pertaining to a potential DDoS vector

  • Worked on the list-files Gaia endpoint over the weekend. All drivers now support listing files!

  • Gaia testing for list-files, especially with large numbers of files (WIP)

Katherine from Messari

  • Product: Agora is now in closed beta and preparing for the public launch. We’re redesigning the Messari homepage for a mid-July release. More soon™.

  • Policy: We have been working with Global Digital Finance and other stakeholders on a shared taxonomy and Code of Conduct for our industry. The draft documents are now open for public consultation, please provide feedback!

  • Ryan and Katherine are in Beijing and Shanghai this week meeting Chinese exchanges, token teams and investors. Drop us a note if you can meet!

  • ICYMI: The US Supreme Court said in an opinion that money evolves, and Bitcoin could be a currency someday (because they want to tax it).

Tom from 0x

  • Deploying 0x V2 on Kovan this morning

  • Started first audit V2 with Jon Haas and Elissa Shevinsky

Michael & Tom from Dfinity

  • No update