Decentralisation

Ep. #46: Sharding with Nick White (Co-founder Harmony Protocol)

Following our discussion with the Zilliqa team, we decided to speak to another Blockchain Protocol that is trying to solve the problem of Scalability through Sharding. Hear Nick White, one of the co-founders of Harmony, tell us about what is unique about their Project as well as the IEO that took place recently on the Binance Launchpad.

Tune in to hear about:

  • What is sharding?
  • Difference between Transaction Sharding and State Sharding
  • How does Harmony achieve State Sharing
  • How does the overall Harmony Network look like?
  • How does Staking work in the Harmony ecosystem, what are the rewards and what does it take to be validator?
  • Governance
  • What DApps are building on Harmony, what is the process to port over from Ethereum or another Blockchain to Harmony?
  • Binance token sale and roadmap
  • Plans for Asia

Ep. #45: Smart contracts on Bitcoin with Diego Zaldívar (Rootstock)

We speak to Diego Gutiérrez Zaldívar, CEO and co-founder of Rootstock or RSK (https://www.rsk.co/) and RIF Labs (https://www.rifos.org/). Rootstock, most famously, is known for putting smart contract functionality on the Bitcoin Blockchain.

Tune in to hear about:

  • Diego’s interesting background and how he got into crypto
  • What Rootstock is and the concept of Merge Mining?
  • How Rootstock helps the Bitcoin miners by generating additional returns for them (related to the concept of Merge Mining)?
  • Why should DApps build on RSK?
  • What is RIFOS and how did it come about?
  • Why is RIFOS important – note, it integrates things like storage, name service, data feeds, etc to make it easier to develop DApps
  • Rootstock’s plans in Asia
  • Diego’s mantra for surviving in crypto – The rougher the weather is, the calmer you have to be

Ep. #44: Stablecoin adoption through E-Commerce with Dan Shin (Terra)

We speak to Dan Shin, Co-founder of Terra (https://terra.money/). Prior to Terra, Dan is most notably known for being the Founder and Chairman of TMON (http://www.tmon.co.kr). TMON or Ticket Monster is a Unicorn out of South Korea which was started in 2010 and had a mobile first approach to e-commerce.

Now Dan is launching a stable coin that aims to drive adoption through his experience and networks in the e-commerce industry.

Tune in to hear about:

  • Going on the mainnet and what that’s like (funnily, we spoke a couple of hours after Terra hit mainnet)
  • Different kinds of stable coins why Terra took the algorithmic route
  • How Terra is trying to drive REAL ADOPTION
  • How Terra maintains price stability and the role that Luna token plays in that
  • What is Seigniorage and how Terra is benefiting from it
  • Go-to market strategy through Terra Alliance comprising Carousell (https://sg.carousell.com/), Qoo1o (https://www.qoo10.sg) etc. + incentives to use Terra
  • How the user journey for using Terra token would look like on e-commerce platforms
  • Tech aspects – Building on Tendermint (https://www.tendermint.com/), on boarding validators
  • Dealing with Regulatory aspects including the failed Basis project (https://www.basis.io/)
  • Partnerships with Tomochain (https://tomochain.com/), Klaytn (https://www.klaytn.com/) etc

Ep. #30: Cryptocurrency/Blockchain Fund with Czhang Lin (MD JRR Crypto)

In this episode, we speak to Czhang Lin who is the Managing Director at JRR Crypto. JRR Crypto is a Swiss Cryptocurrency/Blockchain Fund with a Chinese team which invests in both Crypto projects and the Crypto Ecosystem. They are the second biggest equity shareholder in the Crypto Exchange with one of the highest trading volumes – Binance!

Czhang is a Taiwanese Canadian who grew up in Poland and took his family business public on the Warsaw Stock Exchange. He is an alumnus of INSEAD and Tsinghua University.

Tune in to hear about:

  • Czhang’s very interesting background and how he got involved in Crypto/Blockchain
  • JRR Crypto – structure of the fund, investment thesis, areas of focus etc
  • Crypto ecosystem investments (70% of portfolio): Incubation, Consultancy, Investment banks, Media, Exchanges, Wealth Management, Fund of Funds
  • Crypto projects reperesent 30% of portfolio
  • JRR is the 2nd biggest equity shareholder in Binance
  • Quick overview of the Chinese Crypto/Blockchain ecosystem
  • Reason for the success of the Chinese Exchanges (OKEx, Huobi etc)
  • JRR’s acceleration arm: Super advisor (light involvement) and Co-founder (heavy involvement)
  • JRR’s roadmap
  • Views on a dual token system (utility + security tokens)

Ep. #28: Hedera Hashgraph, a novel Consensus mechanism with Edgar Seah (APAC Head Hedera)

The Hedera Hashgraph platform provides a new form of distributed consensus – it is a fast, secure, fair ‘Blockchain’ with a novel Governance mechanism. In this episode, we speak to the APAC Head of Hedera, Edgar Seah. Edgar has a very eclectic background with stints in Investment Banking, NGOs and corporates aroud the globe. Tune in to hear about:
  • Edgar’s background and how ended up as Hedera Hashgraph’s Asia’s head
  • History of Hashgraph (consensus mechanism)
  • Hashgraph is leveraged in a private manner by a company called Swirlds and in a public manner by Hedera
  • Background on Swirlds and Enterprise clients on Swirlds (e.g. Credit Union Consortium)
  • Motivation behind creating a public ledger in addition to the private ledger
  • Properties of Hashgraph – Speed, Security (aBFT – Asynchronous Byzantine Fault Tolerance), Fairness
  • Governance and a deep dive into how Hedera is trying to solve this problem – Council Governance (off-chain governance) and Consensus Model (on-chain governance)
  • Discussion and views on the claim that Hedera is a private Blockchain and not a public one
  • Regulatory compliance and the path Hedera is taking to achieve mainstream adoption
  • Hedera Hashgraph’s roadmap and the 20 or so projects building on top of it etc
  • Specific areas of focus in Asia
  • Twitter: https://twitter.com/hashgraph
  • Website: https://www.hedera.com/
  • Hedera 18 Hackathon website: https://www.hedera18.com/

Ep. #27: Email on Blockchain with George Hartley (Co-founder Sendy)

Our guest for this episode is George Hartley, co-founder of Sendy. Sendy is aiming to bring about improvements to emails by rewarding the attention of email receivers through cryptocurrencies. The attention is rewarded in Sendy tokens which can be purchased by advertisers.

George comes from a mixture of marketing and product background having worked with several startups and marketing agencies.

Tune in to hear about:

  • George’s background and journey in the blockchain/crypto space
  • Views on email marketing
  • What Sendy is about (https://sendy.network/)
  • Problems that exist in email marketing today and how Sendy is trying to address those
  • Stakeholders in the Sendy ecosystem and role of the token
  • How the current business (https://www.smartrmail.com/) is going to be leveraged/affected?
  • Sendy’s roadmap

Ep. #26: Infinite cash, monetary policies and synchronicity with Andrew Pantyukhin Pt. 2/2 (CEO Tangem)

In the second part of the interview with Andrew Pantyukhin, we speak about certain topics that occupy a great deal of his mindshare beyond the company that he is trying to build (Tangem – https://tangem.com/)

Tune in to hear about:

  • Concept of money as a means of communication
  • Making cryptocurrencies ubiquitous – infinite cash for everyone (along the lines of Universal Basic Income)
  • Optimistic and pessimistic views how the world looks like in a few years
  • Subsistence economies and monetary policies
  • Synchronicity in the world
  • Why speculation in crypto could be a good thing?

Ep. #25: Banknotes for Cryptoassets with Andrew Pantyukhin Pt. 1/2 (CEO Tangem)

In this episode, we speak to Andrew Pantyukhin, the CEO of Tangem. Tangem is aiming to make cryptocurrencies more accessible to everyday individuals by allowing people to store them in smart and secure banknotes. These banknotes can then be used to purchase items or make transactions just like how we use banknotes today.

Andrew has held several roles in various tech businesses prior to founding Tangem. He is a product guy with background in technology and Venture Capital.

Tune in to hear about:

  • Andrew’s introduction, background and about early days of crypto
  • Projects Andrew was excited about in the relatively early days of crypto (21/earn.com – https://earn.com/ and ZCash – https://z.cash/)
  • What Tangem does
  • How does on acquire a Tangem Note and how to use it?
  • What does the customer journey look like for using a Tangem Note
  • Details about the Tangem note – Is the card reusable? How to top up the card? How much does Tangem Note cost to the distributor and customer?
  • Tangem’s business model
  • Tangem’s roadmap and ambitions
  • Website: https://tangem.com/ 

Ep. #24: Decentralized CryptoBanking with Alex Wearn (CEO Aurora/IDEX)

Aurora is a decentralized financial platform with IDEX, a hybrid decentralized exchange, as its first product. Subsequent products will include margin lending on the hybrid exchange and a stablecoin to support the Cryptocurrency bank (called Decentralized Capital)

Our guest for this episode is Alex Wearn, CEO of Aurora DAO. He has previously worked with IBM and Adobe and is a graduate of Kellogg School of Management.

Tune in to hear about:

  • Alex’s background, introduction and journey in crypto
  • What is Aurora? (Decentralised financial institution)
  • Problems with the current financial system that Aurora is trying to address
  • Concept of free banking
  • Bundling of stable coins: https://www.tokensets.com/
  • 1st product of Aurora ecosystem – IDEX which is a hybrid centralised/decentralised exchange
  • Decentralised aspect – custody and settlement
  • Centralised aspect – dispatch of trades to the blockchain
  • Liquidity providers / market makers on IDEX?
  • Key challenges during setting up IDEX and how they were overcome – acquisition of users, operating on Ethereum network
  • Fee structure on IDEX
  • ETH gas prices – https://ethgasstation.info/
  • Understanding Mempool (pending transactions) – https://99bitcoins.com/what-is-bitcoin-mempool/
  • Margin lending on IDEX
  • 2nd product of Aurora ecosystem – Cryptocurrency bank (Decentralised Capital)
  • Stablecoin (Boreals) and how it’ll work
  • AURA token – staking token of IDEX network
  • IDXM token – membership token (3 years of free trades) to bring forth revenues for the company
  • Daily trading volume – highest was about 20-25m, average is 3-7m
  • Aurora’s roadmap
  • Views on the Blockchain and Cryptocurrency ecosystem in general
  • Website: https://auroradao.com/
  • Twitter: https://twitter.com/Aurora_Dao
  • Discord: http://bit.ly/AuroraDiscord 

Ep. #21: Blockchain Community/ Co-Living, Co-Working space with See Eun and Young Hoon (Co-Founders Nonce Community)

Our first guest for this episode is See Eun who was into breakdancing and danced professionally for more than 10 years. He served in the military, curated and wrote for a hip-hop blog and lead hip-hop education efforts before the Bitcoin bug bit him. He started ‘The Blockchainers”, the first Blockchain Cryptocurrency YouTube channel in Korea with his co-host Young Hoon who is the other guest on the show.

Young Hoon majored in math and computer science at the University of Oxford and upon graduation had short stints in McKinsey and Macquarie before also serving in the military in Somalia for a counter-piracy mission for the Korean army.

Together, they also started and currently run Nonce Community, an open-source co-working, co-living Blockchain/Cryptocurrency space based on Proof-of-Work. Nonce community started as a few people who worked in this ecosystem living together in a 3 bedroom apartment and has since grown to a whole building which can currently accommodate upto 100 Blockchainers.

Tune in to hear about:

  • Their fascinating background and what got them into crypto
  • First Korean Blockchain Youtube channel they started – https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCsH44G5T4hHXYrb1aGUB1Gw
  • Nonce Community – Blockchain community – co-living, co-working, open-source Blockchain community based on Proof-of-Work
  • How they went from a 3 bedroom apartment to a building that can accommodate a 100 people
  • Decentralised governance model for the community – decentralised way to make decisions including deciding who gets to stay
  • How the environment was like initially
  • An essay that inspired them (Tyranny of Structurelessness): https://www.jofreeman.com/joreen/tyranny.htm
  • Different verticals at Nonce Community: Tokeneconomics consulting, smart contract auditing, media and community management, fund and research arm
  • Studio Decentral (Media arm): http://www.studiodecentral.org/
  • See Eun’s views on the current perverse media model in the Blockchain/crypto ecosystem
  • Other resources mentioned: Epicenter Podcast (https://epicenter.tv/), Let’s talk Bitcoin (https://letstalkbitcoin.com/)
  • Gary Vee! – https://www.garyvaynerchuk.com/
  • Fund – arbitrage, market making and ICOs – due diligence process and fund structuring
  • Research – Whitepaper.foundation
  • Scalability solutions and their trade-offs: Plasma, state channels and sharding
  • Thoughts on scalability through centralisation of block production
  • Thoughts on move from Proof of Work to Proof of Stake consensus mechanism
  • Store of Value vs Tokens of protocols becoming store of value
  • Bitcoin: Store of value vs medium of exchange
  • Using Blockchain and Cryptocurrency to help society and the planet