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49 minutes | Dec 9, 2021
Mainstreaming DeFi with Parallel Finance
This week, Jorrin Bruns (Support Engineer, Parity Technologies) is joined by Yubo Ruan, founder of Parallel Finance, a lending solutions provider designed to increase liquidity and acceptance on the Polkadot network. Parallel Finance is a Polkadot parachain and its sister network Heiko Finance is a Kusama parachain. This episode begins with an introduction to Parallel Finance and its tech stack. They also discuss how Substrate helped Parallel launch a parachain in 7 months, and how the project is disrupting DeFi through a unique take on lending design and building user interaction interfaces (necessary for interoperability in DeFi). Links Parallel Finance’s website Substrate Builders Program featuring Parallel Finance Highlights 01:53 How to launch a parachain in 7 months 03:30 What is Parallel Finance? 05:40 Substrate modules and tech stack upgrades 08:00 Validator participation requirements 11:34 Heiko use cases and the Security Module 14:20 Increasing engagement in governance 21:50 Parallel Finance products 29:38 Staked tokens can participate in governance 31:15 Borrowing based on your collateral 33:30 Auction lending and crowdloans 42:48 Value proposition between networks: Parallel Heiko and Parallel Finance 45:27 Participation in the Substrate Builders ProgramSpecial Guest: Yubo Ruan.
79 minutes | Nov 25, 2021
Accelerating the Web3 Metaverse with Outlier Ventures
This week, Joe Petrowski (Technical Integrations Lead, Web3 Foundation) is joined by Jamie Burke, CEO, and founder of Outlier Ventures, an accelerator that supports the development and growth of emerging technologies, including Polkadot. They are currently running a Polkadot accelerator through their Base Camp program. Burke describes what he set out to achieve by founding Outlier Ventures in the context of the current internet where platforms are vulnerable to state capture and coercion and are biased against users. With these flaws in mind, the pair discuss the optimal Web3 tech stack with ‘sovereignty first’ as a core design principle and building a permissionless financial system in the context of the Metaverse. The conversation moves on to the Metaverse as a framework for the direction of Web3 where value and identity are transferred and owned by the user. They discuss how to navigate this realm in terms of technology, finance, and culture, and how this aggregate economy would enable a more open metaverse across lots of different use cases, from music to gaming, the creator economy, and more. Links Outlier Ventures’ website Polkadot Base Camp The Open Metaverse OS Age of Surveillance Capitalism, Shoshana Zuboff The Master Switch, Tim Wuh The Sovereign Individual: Mastering the Transition to the Information Age (1997, with James Dale Davidson) Highlights 00:57 Introduction to Outlier Ventures 07:00 User-centricity in Web3 and the Metaverse 11:55 Use cases of NFTs encourage blockchain adoption 18:00 Creating a Web3 Stack to enable a more open Metaverse 21:05 The success of NFTs in the gaming industry 28:40 Integrating into a digital economy to be part of the Metaverse 33:50 Introducing digital scarcity to digital assets = enabling property rights 38:10 Reworking economics primitives 41:25 Free markets, the sovereign individual and fluidity collectors 51:40 Commodification and financialization of data with blockchain technology 54:30 Data unions to empower individuals on Polkadot and Kusama 56:28 How can the Metaverse compete with physical nation-states? 1:05:00 Web3 stack for a better Metaverse user experience 1:10:00 Outlier Ventures support for the Polkadot ecosystemSpecial Guest: Jamie Burke.
63 minutes | Sep 17, 2021
Building Blockchain Social Networks with Subsocial
This week, Jorrin Bruns (Polkadot Integration Specialist, Parity Technologies) is joined by Subsocial’s founder and Polkadot Ambassador Alex Siman, and Zachary Edwards, Subsocial’s content lead and community manager. Subsocial is an open protocol for decentralized social networks and marketplaces, and this episode explores the world of social networks on blockchain, through the eyes of the Subsocial team. They provide an overview of their platform and its architecture and discuss their growth strategy, targeting the non-crypto-native masses by creating a better user experience than Web 2.0 versions like Facebook. This means tackling censorship and moderation, prioritizing user sovereignty, and decentralized marketing. Finally, they consider what the metaverse could look like, and Subsocial’s part in it, and future plans to integrate with Polkadot and Kusama projects. Links Subsocial’s website Blog article about Social Finance Subsocial on Twitter Highlights 1.30 Overview of Subsocial 06:20 Consensus algorithm to secure Subsocial 11:00 The architecture of Subsocial 15:00 Potential for (over) sharing on a blockchain social network 19:00 Separating personal identity from on-chain data 24:00 Storing content on blockchain 28:15 Addressing the issues Facebook created 35:50 Voluntary ads mechanism 38:40 Growth strategy and encouraging users to join 41:40 Account compatibility across Substrate-based chains 43:15 Targeting the non-crypto-native masses 48:50 The Subsocial mobile app 50:15 Rewarding Subsocial ecosystem contributors 52:40 Evolving social networks with blockchain 54:00 ‘Social Finance’ 59:30 Integrations with ‘DotSama’ projects Special Guests: Alex Siman and Zachary Edwards .
81 minutes | Aug 19, 2021
Robonomics: The Blockchain with Robots
In this episode, Jorrin Bruns (Support Engineer, Parity Technologies) is joined by Robonomics Software Architect Sergei Lonshakov. Robonomics is an open-source internet of things (IoT) platform. It provides ways for humans to communicate with robots, and for robots to connect to each other and the internet. Started on Ethereum in 2015, Robonomics is now aiming to be a parachain on Polkadot, with a view to work across both ecosystems. The team also publishes scientific research on the frontier between IoT, blockchain, Ethereum, Substrate, and Polkadot. The pair discuss real use cases of robotics, from those currently available, e.g., in smart cities, to futuristic possibilities in the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Along the way they talk about Mars colonization, digital twins and robot art. Lonshakov also presents Robonomics Web Services (RWS) and the development of the Robot Operating System (ROS), a framework of ready-to-work packages that enable engineers without blockchain experience to create robotic systems that connect to blockchain. Links Robonomics Website Robonomics Overview PDF Robonomics Research Highlights 01:13 What is Robonomics? 05:42 Machine to machine communication 07:25 Milestones since 2015 – From Ethereum to Substrate 18:31 The way forward for Robonomics 21:38 The Robot Operating System (ROS) 28:16 Robonomics Relay Chain vision 34:00 Robonomics use cases 41:07 Robonomics Web Services (RWS) 47:17 Mars colonization 53:10 Digital Twins 58:41 Robot Artist Gaka-Chu 01:04:13 The Fourth Industrial Revolution 01:12:54 Side Effects of Robotization Special Guest: Sergei Lonshakov.
55 minutes | Aug 5, 2021
Statemine: A Deep Dive Into Kusama’s Asset Hub with Joe Petrowski
This week the tables are turned on Relay Chain, with Jorrin Bruns (Support Engineer, Parity Technologies) interviewing co-host Joe Petrowski (Technical Integrations Lead, Web3 Foundation) as a guest representing his contribution to the Statemint/Statemine project. Statemine — Kusama’s version of Polkadot’s Statemint — is a common-good parachain for creating and managing assets and NFTs on-chain. It recently made history as the first live, featureful parachain to be onboarded to Kusama. Now that Statemine has been made permissionless, anyone can use it to create and deploy tokens and NFTs. The pair discuss computational resources, achieving faster speeds, lower transaction fees and the potential to shell out those fees for assets, while incentivizing validators. Petrowski also shares his insights into conceiving and deploying a parachain within two months, the Substrate build, and the project’s challenges from upgrading a runtime without governance to asynchronous asset management across chains, and what’s next for the project. Links Statemint announcement post Statemine upgrade announcement Statemint’s GitHub repositary Highlights 01:17 What is Statemint? 05.40 Taking transactions off the relay chain 10:00 Statemine as the first common-good parachain 16:60 Teleporting assets across multiple chains 20:04 Implementing Statemint governance 23:35 Who is building common-good parachains? 25:49 Incentivizing validators 29:03 How Statemint interacts with other parachains 41:35 Considering asynchronous blockchain execution 44:48 Challenges building Statemint 49:54 Statemint’s runtime upgrade to become permissionless 50:30 What’s next for Statemint/ StatemineSpecial Guest: Joe Petrowski.
49 minutes | Jul 23, 2021
Prediction Markets and Futarchy with Zeitgeist
This week, Jorrin Bruns (Support Engineer, Parity Technologies) is joined by Zeitgeist’s founder Logan Saether, and CIO, David Perry. Zeitgeist is a Substrate-based decentralized network for creating, participating in, and resolving prediction markets, and exploring the potential of futarchy for governance. They discuss prediction market systems, futarchy for decision making, mitigating market biases, how a prediction market works, and its diverse applications — from improving on-chain governance to choosing political candidates and predicting parachain slot auction winners. The team also describes the next steps for this project in terms of usability and adoption, such as parachains leveraging futarcy, developing an SDK to speed up prediction market app deployment, and their plans for Zeitgeist to become a Kusama parachain. Links Zeitgeist’s website The Wisdom of Crowds, James Surowiecki Keynesian beauty contest Futarchy Kusama Derby Conclusion Results Highlights 01:05 What is Zeitgeist 08:10 Prediction market systems 10:27 Futarchy for decision making 13:20 Zeitgeist Substrate pallet recipe 18:00 Automated Market Makers 20:15 How a prediction market works 26:14 Prediction market efficiency given subjective information 27.58 Mitigating prediction market biases and incentives 30:02 Prediction markets within politics 34:15 Types of prediction markets 38:20 Building an SDK 41:20 Zeitgeist plans as a parachainSpecial Guests: David Perry and Logan Saether.
49 minutes | Jul 9, 2021
Querying the World's Data with SubQuery
Jorrin Bruns (Support Engineer, Parity Technologies) talks with James Bayly, Head of Business Development for OnFinality, one of the largest infrastructure providers for Polkadot and Substrate, about Subquery, a tool that speeds up querying and extracting Polkadot network data so that anyone can take the data off-chain and create something useful. They discuss the team's mission to deliver high performance, decentralized services to distribute assets at scale, integrate with blockchain oracles and build tools and infrastructure to advance the Polkadot ecosystem. Bayly provides insights into SubQuery’s network participants, how collaboration and feedback from Polkadot projects in New Zealand influenced several of its value-added features, their long-term plans to become a parachain and the road to 1 billion API (application programming interface) requests. Links OnFinality’s website SubQuery’s website SubQuery’s white paper Subvis.io’s website — the SubQuery project Bayly mentioned as an example of the power of Subquery Highlights 01:18 OnFinality and SubQuery: The mission 15:38 Providing data to blockchains vs. smart contracts 19:16 Web3 grant for open-source tooling 21:20 Decentralized cloud infrastructure 24:00 OnFinality as a distributed cloud provider 26:02 Collaboration with Polkadot teams in New Zealand 29:44 Trigger and notifications from on-chain data 37:06 Integrations with blockchain oracles 39:13 Capabilities and next steps for SubQuery 42:33 Long-term goals to become a parachain 46:10 Open positions to join the SubQuery team Key Quotes “There are around 500 million blocks of data on Polkadot, this team makes the tools to take it off-chain to create something useful.”Special Guest: James Bayly.
83 minutes | Jun 24, 2021
Former Estonian President Toomas Hendrik Ilves on Blockchain Adoption and Internet Regulation
In this Relay Chain exclusive, Joe Petrowski (Technical Integrations Lead at Web3 Foundation) and Parity’s Úrsula O'Kuinghttons speak with former President of Estonia Toomas Hendrik Ilves. Uniquely placed as one of few presidents who knows how to code, Ilves was responsible for implementing the digitization of the Estonian government, one of the first countries to adopt blockchain tech, and many other processes in the country from voting to registering a business. They discuss how Estonia, one of the smallest countries in the world, became one of the most entrepreneurial and tech-savvy, what led Estonia to go ‘digital', declare access to the internet as a basic human right, and mediate data integrity for their digital records via blockchain. Ilves talks about his concerns for the internet given its weaponization and populist exploitation, the problematic state of freedom of expression and accountability online, and governance of online communities beyond nation-states. Links Toomas Hendrik Ilves on Twitter Úrsula 0'Kuinghtton on Twitter X-Road introduction video Cybernetica’s website Highlights 00:00 Intro new co-host, Úrsula 0'Kuinghttons 03:00 Estonia as a global leader in the state adoption of technology 09:04 Digitizing a nation via open-source software and distributed systems 18:55 Access to the internet as a basic human right 25:24 The weaponization of the internet 30:22 Regulating social media 38:46 Defining order and proximity in the digital world 50:20 Governance of online communities 54:56 Social media platforms: responsibilities, and oversight 01:14:30 (e)Residency unbound by offline territorial borders Key Quotes "If you are going to have digital records you gotta have something to maintain integrity and the way to do it is blockchain. I mean, I don't understand how all of these companies in the world and governments have digital records and don’t put them on blockchain just for security." "Question the need to use illiberal methods to preserve liberal democracy."Special Guest: Toomas Hendrik Ilves.
52 minutes | Jun 11, 2021
Creating Your Own Metaverse with Bit.Country
This week we’re joined by Bit.Country, a Substrate-based decentralized world with a game-like feel that puts community at the forefront. Bit.Country lets anyone create their own decentralized virtual country and grow their own community. Jorrin Bruns (Support Engineer, Parity Technologies) talks with members of the Bit.Country team: Shannon Christie, CTO, Justin Pham, CTO, and Ray Lu, CEO about creating customizable experiences in the immersive world of metahuman technology. Besides tech, they discuss incentivizing users for social good, self-rule, and decentralized governance, designing for interoperability with Substrate, plans to launch as a Polkadot parachain and offering a place for entrepreneurs of all skill sets to create and trade NFTs across blockchains. Links Bit.Country’s website Shannon Christie on Twitter Justin Pham on Twitter Ray Lu on Twitter Industry Connect’s website Highlights 02:36 What is Bit.Country? 09:51 The Good Neighborhood Protocol 15:20 Interoperability across chains and Bit.Countries 17:37 Choosing Substrate pallets to build Bit.Country 20:25 Two-tier governance on Bit.Country 22:48 Extending the use cases of NFTs 26:44 Bit.Country’s target audience 30:58 First steps to creating your Bit.Country 36:31 Technical stack and skills required to build a Bit.Country 42:05 Community and education programs 45:13 Business opportunities on the platformSpecial Guests: Justin Pham, Ray Lu, and Shannon Christie.
65 minutes | May 27, 2021
Confidential Cloud Computing on Phala Network
Privacy takes center stage in this week’s episode as Jorrin Bruns (Support Engineer, Parity Technologies) talks with Marvin Tong, co-founder and CEO of the Phala Network, a trustless, privacy-preserving cloud computing network based on Substrate. They dive deep into Phala’s tech, exploring how Phala tackles the issue of trust in the computational cloud by shielding user data from centralized organizations like Google, with the same level of computational power as existing cloud services. Tong details several topics, including node security, Phala’s Substrate-based runtime and bespoke pallets, integrating alternative trusted execution environment (TEE) hardware, and how it tackles consensus. They delve into on-chain data privacy, deploying private smart contract computation for decentralized applications (DApps) and decentralized finance (DeFi) and services on Phala Network including Web3 Analytics and cross-chain interoperability. Links Marvin Tong on Twitter Phala website pDiem WIKI Web3 Analytics website Highlights 01:10 What is Phala Network? 04:40 Privacy in decentralized cloud computation 06:54 Scalability through TEE 09:53 Using multiple TEEs to mitigate trust 15:10 Integrating alternative hardware 17:55 Phala’s Substrate runtime 25:49 Consensus within Phala Network 30:54 Computation on TEE 35:44 Use cases for projects running on Phala 44:41 Bridging Diem (formerly known as Libra) to Polkadot 55:36 Targeting the second parachain slot Key quotes “Separating computation from consensus is the key to how Phala can bring the benefits of blockchain while delivering computational power on the scale of a cloud server.” “We think there are two major types of smart contracts, for now, the first is EVM, and the other is written by ink! or Rust language running in Wasm, WebAssembly. WebAssembly is the type we chose. We want to put WebAssembly inside of TEE so that we can support this kind of security technique grade. We think it will be a major choice for not only Polkadot but the whole industry for Web3.” “Using Web3 Analytics, all of the analysis code is running as a confidential smart contract. This means that the data is not deployed by a centralized server like Google or any other big platform. Using Google Analytics means that you trust to put your user’s data node to Google so that they can analyze it for you. From this perspective, on Web3 Analytics, the data is not trusted by any centralized server or centralized gatekeeper, it is just encrypted by Phala’s system, and how to encrypt it is in the visitor or users hands.” “We believe that in the next three years, or five years, the major technology of all computation cloud will be confidential computing cloud. That’s what we can see from what Google, Amazon, and Facebook are doing.” Special Guest: Marvin Tong.
41 minutes | May 12, 2021
Plasm: Scalable, Interoperable DApps on Polkadot
This week Jorrin Bruns (Support Engineer, Parity Technologies) speaks with Sota Watanabe, CEO of Stake Technologies and founder of Plasm, a platform designed to help developers deploy fast and secure decentralized applications (DApps) on Polkadot. They discuss advancing Web3 via cross-chain collaboration, supporting DApp development, and decentralizing the Plasm network. Watanabe walks us through being the first parachain on Rococo, completing the first cross-chain message (together with Acala), bringing Ethereum compatibility and ZK-Rollups to Polkadot, staking and trading DApps, securing a parachain slot, and much more. Highlights: 0:00 Intro to Stake Technologies and Plasm 03:35 Japan’s version of Web3, the Trusted Web Council 06:35 The value of decentralized organizations 09.48 Connecting blockchains with Substrate 10:32 Support for multiple blockchain technologies 13:05 Plasm’s unique mechanisms; DApp staking and ZKRollups 16:50 Buy and sell Plasm applications 18:15 Stake Technologies Web3 grants 22:10 Schiden and Plasm parachain strategy 24:07 Making blockchain history 26:36 Cross-chain message passing 30:05 NFT capabilities beyond gaming 33:09 Encouraging DApps to build on the Plasm Network Links: Sota Watanabe on Twitter Plasm Network website Stake Technologies website Key Quotes: “When it comes to a smart contract platform, I think a layer 2 solution is needed in the long run so we are making the foundation, the Substrate of Web3, for really normal people. Polkadot itself is a scaling solution, but this is a layer 1 scalability solution. We need vertical scalability which is layer 1, that is why we are working on ZKRollups now. Vertical scalability is much faster, more flexible, and cheaper since layer 2 doesn’t need to be a broken chain” “What makes Plasm different from other parachains? We innovated two things, one is DApps staking and another one is the scaling solution ZKRollups” “We are working on an Ethereum bridge, a Secret Network bridge, and also a Binance bridge in the near future” “We have already connected our Plasm network testnet to Rococo and we have deployed a Web Assembly smart contract and it works on the top of Polkadot’s parachain testnet” “In the past few months, we have successfully completed the first cross-chain messaging passing with Acala. Our token can be transferred to Acala and you can receive the Acala token on the Plasm network” “We support Ethereum Virtual Machine on the top of the Polkadot parachain, so the user can actually develop and make applications on top of Polkadot parachain, instead of individual substrate chains. I think this is one of the most important upgrades in the ecosystem” “On the top of the Plasm network, we can transfer ownership of a smart contract” “We are making a new M&A solution in the blockchain system”Special Guest: Sota Watanabe.
40 minutes | Apr 22, 2021
Tether - Stablecoin Innovation, Regulation, and Mainstream Potential with Paolo Ardoino
This week we dive into Tether, a stablecoin playing an important role in disrupting the legacy financial system, recently announced to be launching on Polkadot. Joe Petrowski, (Technical Integrations Lead, Web3 Foundation) speaks with Paolo Ardoino, CTO of Bitfinex and Tether. They discuss stablecoin trends, regulation and compliance with central banks, CBDCs (Central Bank Digital Currencies), the likelihood of central banks running on public blockchains such as Polkadot and Ethereum, achieving blockchain interoperability through common goods, and the upcoming launch of Tether on Polkadot. Highlights: 00:39 - Intro to Ardoino and Tether 06:38 - The issue of crypto arbitrage 08:57 - Stability by matching a dollar to the pace of Bitcoin 11:01 - Boom and innovation in the stablecoin sector 12:20 - The risks of decentralized stablecoins 13:30 - Achieving purchasing power stability 14:49 - The scope for non-US stablecoins 16:15 - Tether Gold, the precious-metal-backed stablecoin 20:34 - Individual assets vs. a managed basket of currencies 22:48 - Regulation and scrutiny from central banks 27:35 - Blockchain for central banks 28:40 - Tether’s criteria to deploy on a blockchain 30:15 - Common goods for blockchain interoperability 35:07 - Resilience through multiple blockchain support 36:49 - Tether to launch on Polkadot and Kusama Links: Paolo Ardoino on Twitter Tether on Twitter Grenache Ampleforth website Ardoino’s reading list: Eric S. Raymond, The Cathedral and the Bazaar Key Quotes: “I believe that you can not really understand as a CTO, all the nuances and complexities of your platform, if you stop coding” “the reason why our team decided to create Tether was to solve one problem I’m sure you are familiar with, that is crypto Arbitrage” “Why don’t we create a dollar that moves at the same pace as Bitcoin” “I would stay pure and not allow centralized stablecoins…. Crypto backed stablecoins are a very good value add to the sector, but I would prefer or would have preferred to not have decentralized stablecoins and centralized stablecoins.” “If you are using technology and the banking network, you have to respect the same standards, there is no other way around. That is why Tether has the function to freeze funds in order to cooperate with law enforcement. We do it quite openly, and we communicate when we do. Also, we did that to help many projects. There was an exchange hacked six months ago and we helped them to freeze thirty million dollars worth of Tether. There were many DEFI projects that were hacked and we worked with law enforcement to freeze those funds. That is what is happening in the banking world if someone steals funds from your bank account, the bank has the right to freeze your funds if you have stolen funds. We had to replicate the same functionalities in our centralized stablecoins. That is something that the decentralized coins don’t have and don’t need because they don’t use the banking system, we do, and we have to respect that.” “The idea that central banks will issue directly on Ethereum or Omni or Polkadot is quite realistic.” “You give more freedom to your users, you will gain traction.” “Supporting multiple blockchains makes the entire infrastructure resilient.”Special Guest: Paolo Ardoino.
41 minutes | Apr 8, 2021
Joe Petrowski on Imagining a Brighter Future with Polkadot and Web3
After a short hiatus, we’re back this week with a new co-host joining the podcast, Jorrin Bruns (Support Engineer, Parity Technologies). In this episode, Jorrin turns the tables and interviews Joe Petrowski (Technical Integrations Lead, Web3 Foundation, and Relay Chain co-host) about the future of the podcast, Joe’s journey from the aerospace industry to professional cycling to Web3, and how blockchain innovation brings together diverse interest groups. They discuss the potential for Polkadot and Web3 to realize a propian future, breaking down surveillance capitalism through decentralized governance, infinitely scalable parachains (so-called hierarchical or nested relay chains), and building a decentralized economy of robots powered by Polkadot. Links & Resources: Joe Petrowski on Twitter Joe’s Blockchain reading list The Age of Surveillance Capitalism, Shoshana Zuboff Edward Luce, The Retreat of Western Liberalism The Art of Cruelty, Maggie Nelson Weapons of Math Destruction, Cathy O'Neil Automating Inequality, Virginia Eubanks Highlights 0:00 - Intro to new Relay Chain host, Jorrin 02:51 - Joe’s interesting journey in to the blockchain space 08:04 - What attracts different people to blockchain 13.59 - Difference between Parity Technologies and Web3 Foundation 15:47 - The potential for infinitely scalable parachains 17.28 - The future direction of the podcast 21:31 - Big tech’s misuse of data in the age of surveillance capitalism 25.20 - Transparency through Polkadot’s open governance 29.38 - Should governments break up tech monopolies? 33:19 - Literary recommendations for working in blockchain 36:20 - Blockchain’s role in building a better future 38:18 - A look at the Polkadot ecosystemSpecial Guest: Joe Petrowski.
38 minutes | Dec 2, 2020
Equilibrium and the Global Impact of Blockchain, DeFi, and Web3
In this wide-ranging and eye-opening discussion, Joe Petrowski (Research Analyst, Parity Technologies) speaks with Lesley Czuma, Head of Business Development at Equilibrium, a cross-chain money market combining pooled lending with synthetic asset generation and trading. They discuss the massive potential of Web3 and DeFi to radically impact global systems of organization and power, to disrupt monopolies, and bring benefits to those marginalized by the current economic paradigm. They also dive into what Equilibrium is building and the role played by Polkadot and Substrate, the blockchain-building framework from Parity Technologies. Links: Equilibrium website Equilibrium on Twitter Equilibrium on Telegram Highlights: 02:00 - Web3’s potential effects on global systems of power and monopolies 10:30 - What Web3 can learn from political unions and nation states 16:40 - Web3’s impact beyond infrastructure builders 24:09 - Replacing legacy systems vs integrating with them 28:15 - Equilibrium’s mission 30:50 - Equilibrium’s role in the Polkadot ecosystem 33:35 - Equilibrium’s roadmap Key Quotes: “It’s not a coincidence that Web3 is sometimes compared to a borderless global society where people have the same chances.” “This tech jump that we’re observing right now is catapulting new actors onto the world stage and forcing established monopolies to rethink their business models in order to stay on their toes, and it actually ends up being a little bit like a system of checks and balances” “If the previously rich and advanced industrialized societies had the say on the world stage, together with some leading brands, I think there’s a clear trend that this new technology with blockchain is actually empowering individuals with no particular means, especially those have been disempowered until now.” “Some of the large brand names, let’s say in credit cards, are keying into the process and realizing that if they don’t start taking blockchain seriously then they’re going to lose out.” "As the scope in adoption of blockchain and DeFi grows, it’s automatically going to draw in more people from different walks of life. The mainstreaming is going to happen in the same way that it did with the dotcom revolution. You’re going to have blockchain apps becoming so essential that no one is going to be able to ignore them anymore.”Special Guest: Lesley Czuma.
39 minutes | Nov 19, 2020
Web3 Community-Building and Advocacy Through the Polkadot Ambassador Program
Polkadot and Web3 take center stage in this week's episode. Joe Petrowski (Research Analyst, Parity Technologies) speaks with Zoé Meckbach, a senior Polkadot ambassador and blockchain technology and cybersecurity advocate. They discuss the Polkadot and Web3 communities, the Polkadot ambassador program and what it’s like to be an ambassador, and some of the exciting things happening in the space. Links: Zoé Meckback on Twitter Polkadot Ambassador Program Highlights: 02:03 - From Google to blockchain 09:20 - What is the Polkadot Ambassador Program? 20:15 - Exciting developments in the Polkadot ecosystem 26:10 - Web3 and freedom of speechSpecial Guest: Zoé Meckbach.
38 minutes | Oct 29, 2020
Freedom of the Press in the Age of Digital Surveillance
This week we look at the intersection between journalism, freedom of the press, and technology. Joe Petrowski (Research Analyst, Parity Technologies) speaks with Harlo Holmes, Director of Digital Security at the Freedom of the Press Foundation. They discuss the role of journalism in a free society, the contemporary media landscape, the Snowden revelations, surveillance, the role of technology and privacy, the political implications of technology development, and best practices for whistleblowers. Links: Freedom of the Press Foundation Website Freedom of the Press Foundation Twitter Press Freedom Tracker Highlights: 0:40 - Intro to Holmes and FPF 03:30 - Edward Snowden’s impact 09:08 - Journalism’s role in a free society 11:43 - The change in media today 16:31 - Technology’s role in journalism 19:27 - How to use technology without being exploited 23:27 - The influence that programmers have 29:42 - Blockchain experiments 34:42 - Best practices for whistleblowers Key Quotes: “Journalism’s role in society is as old as the printing press itself…. People have the right to know what’s going on. You can’t make informed decisions if you don’t know what’s going on.” “Certain media sources are more skewed towards obfuscating rather than illuminating, and there has always been a challenge for individuals to find news sources that they can trust.” “Historians will look at the rise of platforms such as Facebook and Twitter as a turning point in the way that the media has had to reevaluate its reach, reevaluate its funding model, and reevaluate how it presents itself to the public at large in order to secure its reach. This is quite a shift in the material of media itself.” “People don’t necessarily realize that because the more digital aspects of our engagement are incredibly easy to parse, that opens us up to being entirely surveilled very easily and automatically” “You have a profile, everybody is profiled based off their patterns of behavior on the internet however they interact with it, and you pretty much don’t live a day in your existence without interacting and without contributing to this profile.”Special Guest: Harlo Holmes.
34 minutes | Oct 8, 2020
Running Node Infrastructure Easier with Bison Trails
This week we look at proof-of-stake blockchain node infrastructure with the space’s leading solutions provider, Bison Trails. Joe Petrowski (Research Analyst, Parity Technologies) speaks with Aaron Henshaw, CTO and cofounder of Bison Trails, which pioneers blockchain node infrastructure and lowers the barrier to entry across multiple networks, including Polkadot, Cosmos, Eth 2.0, Near, Celo, and more. They discuss how and why Bison Trails was founded, the current state of node infrastructure, risk management, and possibilities for future development. Links: Bison Trails Website Bison Trails on Twitter Aaron Henshaw on Twitter Highlights: 02:14 - How Bison Trails came to focus on proof of stake 06:12 - Bison Trails background 08:22 - Node infrastructure setup 10:12 - Similarities/differences between protocols 12:06 - Monitoring, alerting, and availability guarantees 16:36 - Node infrastructure risk and mitigation 22:44 - Blockchain infrastructure beyond staking 28:37 - Future opportunities for node providersSpecial Guest: Aaron Henshaw.
37 minutes | Sep 23, 2020
Polkadot-Ethereum Compatibility with Moonbeam
This week we dive into cross-network compatibility and interoperability between Polkadot and Ethereum. Joe Petrowski (Research Analyst, Parity Technologies) speaks with Derek Yoo of Moonbeam, an Ethereum-compatible smart contract parachain built on Substrate for Polkadot. They discuss Moonbeam and how it works, the role of smart contracts on Polkadot, the difference between Moonbeam and Ethereum layer-2 solutions, and the future of cross-network interoperability. Links: Derek Yoo: https://twitter.com/derekyoo Moonbeam: https://twitter.com/MoonbeamNetwork Purestake: https://twitter.com/purestakeco Highlights: 06:27 - What is Moonbeam? 08:15 - Why Moonbeam is more than just an EVM implementation 12:16 - The difference between Moonbeam and an Ethereum-Polkadot bridge 15:40 - How parachain solutions compare to Ethereum layer-2 solutions 18:17 - The role of smart contracts on Polkadot 20:36 - Where the EVM fits in to Polkadot 24:44 - Motivation for also deploying Moonbeam to Kusama 30:05 - How different networks will work together 33:22 - Current state of applications on Moonbeam Key Quotes: “The power of Substrate is definitely the magic here. I think people don’t appreciate how powerful a framework on Substrate is. We’ve worked with some teams that are building a blockchain from scratch, and that’s a 20-30 person engineering effort….It’s a dramatic difference when you use a framework like Substrate.” “Part of our attraction to Polkadot is this ability for different chains to leverage each other’s specialized services.” “[Kusama] is a pretty key competitive advantage to Substrate-based projects. This ability to move, maintain momentum and respond to what’s happening….You can have larger competitors but if you’re able to move faster and respond faster you can get a big competitive advantage.” “[Interoperability] is more in changing people's minds than it being a technical problem. You’re always going to get a bit of tribalism at play in this space…but we’re drawn to the interoperability idea because it opens choices for developers to take advantage of the best that any given chain has to offer.”Special Guest: Derek Yoo.
61 minutes | Jul 13, 2020
The Challenges of Disrupting the System with Blockchain
This week we talk to the Parity's head of security Kirill Pimenov about the shortcomings and potential of blockchain, open-source software and DLT. Joe Petrowski (Research Analyst, Parity Technologies) speaks with Kirill Pimenov, head of security at Parity Technologies. The disruptive nature of blockchain has attracted many great minds from many backgrounds, and Kirill Pimenov's wealth of experience and knowledge clears up some of the hype and promises of blockchain regarding its relationship to power, raising capital, and freedom. Links: The Moral Character of Cryptographic Work - Phillip Rogaway Banana Split - Shamir Secret Sharing for people with friends Highlights: 01:40 - Mining a Bitcoin block in 2010 03:02 - The ethics of open source 04:15 - Kirill's introduction to programming 10:05 - Blockchain as the field where money meets engineering 13:25 - The Silicon Valley version of the American Dream 15:30 - Blockchain is the first non-military application which pays people enough 16:45 - "The thing you're supposed to decentralize is power" 23:06 - What underlying principle led to the internet to being this way? 27:01 - How can users have a say in the way systems work? 32:07 - If you optimize for profit, you get immoral, profit-maximizing machines 36:52 - Can a decentralized system be corrupted? 43:05 - DLT and blockchain is short-sighted right now 50:12 - We haven't figured out how to beat the current financial system yet 52:18 - We can never build a fair system without humans in the loop 57:10 - Who are your role models?Special Guest: Kirill Pimenov.
30 minutes | Jun 22, 2020
DeFi on Polkadot with Acala and Laminar: Part 2
This week we talk to the Acala Network team and learn about the Acala Network and their Sovereign Wealth Fund. Joe Petrowski (Research Analyst, Parity Technologies) speaks with Dr. Antonia Chen, Chief Econominst and Co-founder of Laminar and Acala, and Ruitao Su, CEO and Co-founder of Acala and Laminar. They are working on a governed protocol that enables decentralized finance applications on blockchain, allowing everyday users to join the DeFi revolution by leveraging the Acala stable token to create a Sovereign Wealth Fund and other defi applications. Links: Regaining confidence in Decentralized Stablecoins - Ruitao Su Building a Decentralized Sovereign Wealth Fund Laminar Website Acala Network Website Highlights: 01:00 - How is the Acala stablecoin different from MakerDAO? 04:50 - Deploying custom logic to interact with the Acala stable token 05:12 - Homa: how your funds can do more 08:00 - What is the decentralized Sovereign Wealth Fund? 10:55 - How the Sovereign Wealth Fund can generate returns 15:30 - A comparison to traditional sovereign wealth funds 16:59 - The Sovereign Wealth Fund as a parachain and beyond 20:53 - The many functions of tokens on Acala and Polkadot 25:05 - A digital society with Acala on Polkadot and Web3 26:12 - How will people use the many different protocols of Polkadot and AcalaSpecial Guests: Antonia Chen and Ruitao Su.
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