Interview with Babbitt | Is it a bear market or a bull market now? Is DeFi the future? A large wave of overseas star teams accepted our soul torture

With the continuous development of blockchain ecology, Bitcoin and Ethereum are no longer the only focus of the community. A large number of projects that have emerged in recent years have allowed us to see new possibilities and opportunities in the blockchain world.

Babbitt's joint chain node recently interviewed a number of overseas star projects and companies in Shanghai, hoping to see the direction of industry development from their eyes and understand their views on hot spots.

The guests in this interview have (in no particular order):

Dfuse co-founder & chief technology officer Alexandre Bourget

Harmony Founder & CEO Stephen Tse

NEAR Protocol co-founder Illia Polosukhin

Nick Grossman, Partner, Union Square Ventures

Kava CEO Brian Kerr The interview is divided into three parts, namely basic torture, soul torture and ending small eggs. The following is an interview record (the text version is longer, Xiaobian for everyone to focus on the focus , improve the reading experience from me):

1. Basic torture area: market and hotspots

8btc: Just talk about what your project is doing.

Dfuse: blockchain API

I am Alexandre Bourget, I am the chief technology officer of dfuse. Dfuse focuses on building blockchain APIs that provide users with tools to build powerful user interfaces based on blockchain data at the base layer. We are the infrastructure layer, just like the data providers like Infura (Ethernet API)… You can see the dfuse page at Chainnode , where we talked a lot. We have Chinese representatives and colleagues who run the Chinese community. Welcome to see it.

Harmony: A public chain that wants to solve the "impossible four corners" (scalability, security, efficiency and privacy)

Hello everyone, welcome to Shanghai and thank you for hosting the event in Shanghai. I am really happy to come to Shanghai again. My name is Steven, Xie Zhenxi, the CEO and founder of Harmony. It is really rare for us to come to this Shanghai gathering. We returned to China a year ago, and then went to understand the blockchain. After a year, we finally got on the main network. Most of our team is in Silicon Valley, but many people are very concerned about the Chinese market. I really learned a lot here. Most American projects have come to China, so many friends come here today. of.

NEAR:layer 1 sharding solution, developer-friendly public chain

Hello everyone, I am Illia, the co-founder of the NEAR Protocol. NEAR Protocol is a layer 1 sharding solution that focuses on ensuring the availability of blockchain and driving its popularity.

Union Square Ventures (USV): Top VC, founding member of the Libra Association

I am Nick Grossman, a partner at Union Square Ventures. We are a VC from New York, and we have been investing in Internet applications and infrastructure since 2003. Twitter, Etsy, Twilio, MongoDB are all companies we invest in. Since 2012 or 2013, we have been involved in the investment of crypto assets and blockchain. We have invested in Coinbase, the largest exchange in the United States. In the past 4 or 5 years, we have invested in some early development. Encrypt asset projects.

Kava: Cosmos-based DeFi platform

I am Brian Kerr, I am the CEO and founder of Kava Labs. Kava built the DeFi platform on Cosmos, allowing users to receive stable currency, self-service lending, margin trading, leverage on crypto assets, and hedge.

8btc: What interesting projects at home and abroad are worthy of attention?

Dfuse: an innovative protocol at the data layer

The project I am most interested in now is the protocol class. We have seen many new agreements born. For me, what's interesting is the blockchain with read and write capabilities. We can help most of these protocols introduce developers, simplify the process and make them the developers of these projects. So I am very interested in innovative protocols at the data level.

Harmony: Name praise Conflux, Nervos, NEAR and Avalanche

(Projects at home and abroad) are paying attention. I think the domestic is of course Conflux and Nervos. They have organized many events with us. We feel that they are all doing the underlying public chain and there are many things that can learn from each other. In the United States, NEAR and Avalanche are some of the projects we have been paying attention to. I think it is very difficult to let everyone discuss each other from the panel at the conference. In fact, we have to mention today that the impossible triangle has become the four corners of the four dimensions. The new one is privacy. So we will all learn how to do new technology with everyone, and what is the direction of everyone.

NEAR: Chinese wallet fun is fun

I passed through a lot of interesting projects. At this stage, we are more inclined to communicate with wallets, validators and people who want to do DApps. This is our focus. Obviously, compared to the United States, Chinese wallets have many uses. There are still a lot of certifiers who have been engaged in mining now to do a stake. There is also an expanding community of developers who want to do some interesting applications, not just speculation.

USV: Multi-party calculation is very important, PlatOn is very good

This is a great event with participants from many interesting projects. It feels good to be here. One of the conference's sponsors, PlatOn, is doing multi-party computing. This is an area we have been paying attention to, and it is an important area for privacy, data exchange and financial applications. There are other teams around the world who are doing this, but the field is still primitive and immature, but at the same time it is very important. I am very happy to know the team and know that they are doing it.

Kava: NEAR founder is a genius

There are many. There are many interesting projects and companies here. There are market makers, exchanges and many other creative cryptocurrency projects. If you must say a project other than Kava, I will introduce the founder of NEAR Protocol, Illia, to my friends. He is really a genius and is very good at protocol design.

8btc: Is DeFi, which is a hot spot in the country, too hot in foreign countries?

Dfuse: DeFi in the US and Canada

I am from Canada, and I did see the ecology of the United States and Canada booming. DeFi is really popular in the US and Canada. Our technology shows DeFi in the form of data. People can extract data and make choices about this aspect of open finance. We don't send coins, more at the infrastructure level, but we do see a lot of people using the blockchain to create an open financial layer.

Harmony: Chain applications involving assets and lending are hot, but hard to do.

Absolutely. I think that whether it is in Ethereum or Tron or EOS, I think about this problem because I think there is a benefit that if the application on the chain can solve some problems of assets and borrowing first, it is very difficult to do. . Their safety is very important. Whether it is MakerDao or not, Compound and dydx are issues that we will discuss together with today's panel, and we are very concerned about Harmony. Harmony is compatible with the Ethereum virtual machine. I hope that I can really solve the DeFi application, but how can it be faster and cheaper is the problem we are thinking about.

NEAR: Compound and Dharma are our neighbors

I am from San Francisco. So the answer is yes, DeFi is very hot in the United States. Compound and Dharma are only two blocks from our company. DeFi is definitely a new trend.

USV: DeFi is the future

The most straightforward answer is that the DeFi field we are seeing today is the acquisition of open agreements and secure digital assets and the connection of these assets. At the most basic level, one of the things that excites us is that anything can be built on top of other things, because it's open source and assets are in the chain. So DeFi is the area where we witness the strongest creativity and the most activity. Criticizing DeFi is very simple. It can be said that its market value is very small and it has no connection with the real economy. Of course, these two things are true, but I still think that this field is exciting because we see publicity that can cooperate and communicate with each other. The agreement also has open digital assets. I think this is the future architecture, and we are still in the early stages of exploration.

8btc: Do you think we are in a bear market or a bull market?

Dfuse: Not talking about currency is our motto

The motto of our company is that we don't talk about currency prices. We are a technology company, we want to serve those who value our business, I think everyone is very focused on the work, and the final result, let us wait and see.

Harmony: This is a bull market for talent.

Very good question. This is a question that everyone will definitely discuss in the country. I think it is definitely a bull market. Because our team is going to consider the issue from the perspective of three, four or ten years. I can see so many friends coming out of Silicon Valley, from our company, some professors, graduate students, these friends finally understand that whether it is mainstream Libra or some academic research, there are many people who are interested to see, I I feel that this is a bull market for talent. We can stick to it for many years.

NEAR: We are waiting for the actual application market

I hope that we are in a market waiting for practical applications. I don't think we are in a bear market, nor do we think we are in a bull market. I hope we can see more apps and then switch to the bull market to witness higher popularity.

USV: I really like the bear market.

This question is great. At this stage it is a bit calm, we have been in the bear market for some time. I like the bear market very much. Because in 2018, many excellent teams have been doing different things. I think that in the past year, the market has been a little warmer because there have been a lot of new things. This is a great episode, both for Bitcoin and other things. This field has attracted many outstanding engineers, businesses and community talents, and I think we will continue to witness the growth of the market. Therefore, I personally are optimistic about this industry. For me, there is a lot of room for development in this industry.

Kava: Things outside of Bitcoin must be questioned

It may be between the two. I don't think the market knows whether it is in a bear market or a bull market. I think everyone is very optimistic about Bitcoin, but it has to make a big question mark for other things.

8btc: Are you a hodler?

Dfuse: I don’t have a rich man who bought bitcoin with 90 knives.

I bought a bit at Bitcoin $90, so I entered the game earlier, but it didn't make me rich. I still choose to hold. Everyone in our company holds a bit of bitcoin, because this is exciting, but we are not a big money, we still pay more attention to technology.

Harmony: While learning new technologies, you must explain to the community.

This is very good. Our team has not yet got their own token. I am holding BTC. But in the future, I think it's still necessary to do both sides. While learning new technology, we have to explain to the community why we should hold it. I certainly believe in this technology myself, and I have to do it for more than ten years and twenty years.

NEAR: I am definitely a hodler of NEAR, but I will not buy coins of other chains.

I entered the blockchain industry a year ago. We went through a series of stages, first trying to build a startup, then encountering the architectural problems of Web 2, and then looking for architectural solutions through Web 3, like Google, Tencent, etc. Companies have problems with power and application centralization. I did not hold the currency before this. For cryptocurrencies, 2018 is a very interesting year. I am definitely a hode of NEAR. Since we have done a lot of research on existing protocols and systems, I know that there are many architectural problems, including Bitcoin, Ethereum, EOS, Tron, etc., so for me, I buy other chains while I am doing the chain. The chain of coins is very difficult.

USV: I have been buying and holding Bitcoin

Yes. I have a lot of different currencies, I have been buying and holding Bitcoin.

Kava: I once held a lot of competitive coins and I am "returning evil".

I used to vote for a lot of coins, which was 2017. Bitcoin certainly has, but there are also many competing coins. After that, I slowly started to hold more bitcoins and reduced the competition coins. I currently hold 4 cryptocurrencies.

2. Soul torture area: How to play DApp? What does Libra want to do? How is the scalability problem broken?

8btc: Help DApp development, how do you all do it?

Dfuse: Simplify the data reading process

Dfuse exposes data from the blockchain. This is divided into two aspects: writing (data) to the chain and reading (data) to the chain. Often, reading (data) is difficult because nodes don't simplify the process, but let the developer suffer from this complexity. What we do is expose the API, which greatly simplifies the work developers need to run the DApp. We provide a mobile terminal so that we can update what is on the blockchain; we also provide a terminal to check the status of the transaction, to check the location of the exchange, to check if it is included in the block, whether it is forked, and whether it is waiting for confirmation. How long is the waiting time, and how likely it is to be included in the block, is it irreversible? Therefore, we provide these terminals with a high degree of simplicity, while also ensuring that developers can start over after they drop. We help them shrink the code, they don't need to know all the protocols to get reliable output, that's what we are doing.

NEAR: Resolve capacity issues; improve developer experience; introduce more users

We are doing a lot of things. At present, many applications, especially one of the problems faced by Ethereum applications, are that the price of gas is too high, which is caused by limited capacity. We did a sharding solution that solved a number of problems that existed before the sharding architecture. But this is not enough. It is very difficult to do DApp at this stage. So one of the things we focus on is the developer experience, let web-side developers and mobile developers join in and build applications on the blockchain. So we mainly do subtraction, we can let Javascript developers build applications such as smart contracts and DApps. The third point is that if you want to do the application, you definitely need the user. At this stage, the world of cryptocurrencies is still small. Now with DApp only cryptocurrency users, we hope that the improvement of the protocol layer can solve this problem, so that ordinary users can participate and start using DApp. Then let them know and use the cryptocurrency.

8btc: Why should USV join the Libra Association?

USV: Any project that promotes the popularity of cryptocurrencies is of interest to us.

From the outset, the infrastructure that focused on driving adoption was part of our investment philosophy in the blockchain and crypto assets. In 2012 and 2013, when we evaluated Coinbase, we regarded it as the French currency entry in the digital asset world. This was a missing piece at the time and it needed to be established. Therefore, it is very important to establish such an architecture. There are many investments today that target new protocols, such as the layer 2 protocol, as well as various assets and applications. There are also investments in browsers and mobile phones that support encrypted assets. These areas are important for mainstream adoption. Applications are an important part of a consumer application that can accept encrypted assets. Facebook and all members of the Libra Association believe that we have the opportunity to promote the ubiquity of cryptographic assets. Libra's capabilities will be completely different than those of Bitcoin and Ethereum. But millions of people and even billions of people can use wallets. We think this is a very correct step from the perspective of financial services and inclusive finance, and it is also the beginning of the further popularization of the encryption asset ecology.

8btc: What kind of support does USV give Libra?

USV: The current priority is to solve the challenge

The Libra Association is still at a very early stage, and the reason we chose to join is because of the organization and governance of the participating associations. Everything is still just beginning today. We are actively participating in the establishment of the association. The project received too much attention and was questioned by cryptocurrency and regulatory authorities. As a founding member, we are solving these problems and putting everything on the right track. But it is still a very early stage.

8btc: The standard for top VC evaluation projects?

USV: Technology Foundation + Ability to Manage Communities = Strong Team

This is a very good question. We have been paying attention to the team with strong technical skills and very strong. This is for sure. This area is very complicated. A new project should not only have a good technical foundation, but also the ability to manage complex communities. It is important to assess the full picture of a team and its ability to operate early projects and open markets. We believe that there will be many different types of cryptographic assets serving different applications, including hedging, payments, collectibles, data-oriented applications, and some telecommunications architectures that will be used in computing architectures. We also focus on the team and their capabilities and invest in different and important areas.

8btc: How does DeFi benefit from cross-chaining?

Kava: Connect all big-capital currencies with cross-chain

At this stage, DeFi is almost limited to the Ethereum ecology. DeFi users can only use assets based on Ethereum. With cross-chaining, you can introduce all the big-capital currencies, such as Bitcoin, Coin, XRP, Atom, etc. These currencies are currently not interoperable with Ethereum and cannot implement DeFi functionality.

8btc: How is the decentralization and scalability problem broken?

Harmony: The scalability of impossible triangles

We all start thinking about the impossible triangle. Why do we think this is the biggest problem? Because we (teams) are basically infrastructure engineers. We (teams) are some engineers from Google, Amazon, and Apple. We have been thinking about how this platform should be done from the beginning. Is it possible to re-imagine this problem with some quick network technology and some of our experience in large companies? It took us a year to finally make state sharding, we made secure sharding, and then combined with PoS to do 1% attack and single shard (single shard) ) and other issues are resolved. I feel that it took a little time to study. We can really make research into output.

3. Egg area: Chinese food and blockchain entrepreneurs

8btc: Talk about the experience in China.

Dfuse: Sure enough, Chinese dumplings are delicious.

This is my first time in China, but most of our company has been here to come here to participate in activities, especially those related to EOS. I came with my wife and my daughter. We are all coming to China for the first time and coming to Shanghai for the first time. I really like to eat dumplings. I also ate some dumplings in Canada. I went to a store yesterday. I forgot what the name was. The place was great. We ate some dumplings with peanut butter. It was too delicious, a lot of juice. I really like to eat dumplings too much.

Harmony: I have seen a lot of Chinese "fake news" abroad.

I was born in Dongguan, grew up in Hong Kong, and attended high school and university in Canada. The most difficult thing to come back is to finally learn to speak Mandarin. I really can't say a word a year ago. My wife is a Harbin, but we all speak English because we all live and work in the United States. Then come back here, so many delicious food in Shanghai. Of course, it is rare to use Chinese to communicate and really know another world. Because domestic English is good, they will look at foreign studies and look at reddit and telegram, but foreign people rarely know about China. do you know? Before I came back, we were still in Silicon Valley, discussing Chinese affairs every day, and reading reports from mainstream media such as the New York Times, but did not return to work in China. It’s useless to read so much. I came back once and stayed for two weeks and found that I really want to feel the community here. So whether it’s speaking Chinese or having the opportunity to eat more Chinese food, it’s very rare.

NEAR: I hope to work with the Chinese team to promote the popularity of Web 3

Interesting experience… The first time I came to China was 4 years ago, this year has come several times. The pace of development in China is very interesting, especially in Beijing. Beijing has changed a lot in these four years. This represents the development of technology and innovation, which is very exciting. This is why we have been in China for so long. We want to know how to work with the Chinese team to promote the popularity of Web 3. I really like Chinese food. I like the lion head most. This is Beijing cuisine, and the roast duck is also great.

USV: Everything is great

I really hope to give you more to say about my experience in China. But most of the time I stayed at the hotel. I didn't have any chance to explore the conference. This is my first time in China. I hope that I will have the opportunity to go out two days after the end of the summit. Now I am just chatting with the participants. I just had a great lunch at a nearby restaurant. I haven't eaten anything weird yet. It's really delicious.

Kava: I got something strange in Hangzhou.

This may be my first time to come to China. Shanghai is really great. I am from San Francisco, USA, this is a very small city. I grew up there, I thought it was a big city, because that was the biggest city I ever met. Then I went to Chicago. My heart is: Wow, this may be a big city. Then I went to New York, and I was again: Wow, this is really a big city. Then I went to Beijing, and I thought: Wow, the city is too big. But Shanghai seems to be bigger, and many of China's infrastructure is great. I am really excited. I don't seem to have anything strange. I used to run around the world. It seems that there is nothing too amazing. However, when I went to Hangzhou, I ate something strange. Not this time. When I was in communication with the Hangzhou government, I ate Pippi shrimp, something I had never seen before. This shrimp has a very hard shell and claws. It is a very special seafood. Especially interesting. It’s too scary.

This interview made me understand that there is a certain similarity in the perception of hotspots, both domestically and abroad. In some areas, domestic development is more diversified. On the road of blockchain development, everything is unknown, and we can only find the right direction through continuous experimentation. Pay tribute to the blockchain entrepreneurs here!