As always there’s a lot to report since the last post!
Most importantly you can now deploy smart contracts to the Ellipticoin testnet! I wrote a tutorial about how to do that here. My plan in the near future is to incentivize people to build on the platform by either offering a cash bounty for completing the tutorial or to hold an global Ellipitcoin Hackathon with cash (DAI) prizes!
Beyond that I’ve been meeting a ton of people in the space and getting some good feedback on the project. In June I went on a 3 week trip to Zug and Berlin to tell as many people as I could about Ellipticoin. In Zug I worked out of Crypto Valley Labs and met with a bunch of people building blockchain applications. One night they hosted a meetup where CoreLedger presented their new dApp Bd300. Bd300 is a card trading game CoreLedger built for the government of Liechtenstein to showcase their support of Blockchain technology. In the game players trade cards with each other and the goal is to get all 300 cards. Each card has a famous historical figure of Liechtenstein on them along with artwork and a description of the card. I like this application a lot because it’s working software. So much of this space is theoretical. Seeing working software is refreshing. I chatted with the CEO of CoreLedger after the presentation and got his email. We agreed to check in again in a few months.
I also made some good connections at the Web 3 Foundation! I asked in the Polkadot watercooler chatroom one day and a they said they were right across the street! I met with their community manager and the researching working on consensus mechanisms for polkadot. I considered converting Ellipticoin to a polkadot parachain but I realized it would restrict me too much. I am however, now a Polkadot ambassador!
The concentration of blockchain projects in Zug (dubbed Crypto Valley) is astonishing. There are some 750 crypto companies based there in a population of only ~30,000 residents! I also went to a Crypto Entrepreneurial meetup a couple times and a Bitcoin meetup in Zurich.
Halfway through my trip I went to Berlin for a few days to spread the news about Ellipticoin there too! The first day I worked out of Primalbase another crypto based co-working space. Holders of the Primal Base Token (PBT) can rent access to Primal Base co-working spaces daily on their platform. I rented a desk for the day for under $3 USD! I was disappointed that the space wasn’t more social. Everyone was pretty much heads down working on their projects.
The next few days I went worked out of Full Node. There was much more of an opportunity for socializing with the other co-workers there. On my first day a small group of people was heading to lunch and I asked if I could join them. They happily accepted and we went to a nice Thai place down the street. A couple of them worked for Colony a project I’ve been following for a while. It was great to hear more about Colony and tell them about what I’m working on as well. I also got to meet someone working on Gnosis Wallet and the some folks from the Comos team aswell.
Berlin’s blockchain scene is quite active as well. Midway through my trip to Berlin I attended a blockchain event at Siemens. A lot of it was your run-of-the-mill corporate hand-wavey descriptions of applications that don’t require blockchains with cheesy modern looking graphics but it was encouraging to see interest in blockchain from a multinational cooperation. I talked to a lot of people about Ellipticoin there as well.
I was excited that throughout the trip I didn’t hear anything that has discouraged me from continuing to build. One of the most common questions I got asked was “How many people are on you team?” and/or “how are you funded?” For those that don’t know I’m the only one working on Ellipticoin at this point and I’m self funded. I am however confident that if I did have funding I have enough connections in the space that I could hire a small team to work on Ellipticoin with me. I’m also confident that I have enough connections to people who would fund development Ellipticoin if there was full team working on it. I don’t want to do a crowd sale because of the legal and regulatory hurdles involved. Making a whole bunch of money sounds like it would be fun for about a week and then seems like it’d just get depressing. I’m much more interested in building great software. My plan now is to launch the network and start mining tokens. I can then sell those tokens and use the proceeds to hire more developers. Better yet the other developers could mine the tokens themselves.
If the Ellipticoin launch is successful I doubt I’ll go hungry. I can figure out how to make money when I run out of runway. In the mean time I want to get some Dapps running on the testnet so I can show how nice it is to build on Ellipticoin!
My plans for the near future are the following:
Continue to refine Ellipticoind. Everything is working but sometimes nodes are broadcasting invalid blocks too eachother. Invalid blocks are ignored so this isn’t a problem but it fills up the logs. This is the main issue I want to tackle right now and there’s always refactoring to do aswell.
Make a brew port of Ellipticoind so it’s easy to install the node/miner on Mac OS X.
Continue to plan a hackathon/bounties program. If anyone has any ideas let me know!
I’m going to be in Austin, TX doing a blockchain related design sprint with thoughtbot next week (the week of July 22nd). If anyone from the Austin community is around I’d love to grab a coffee, hear what you’re working on and talk to you about Ellipticoin as long as you’re willing to listen!
Until next time!