Jupiter x GenesysGo AMA

Jupiter: the key liquidity aggregator and swap infrastructure for Solana

Jupiter AMA with Frank from GenesysGo (2/8/22)
GenesysGo - We build, configure, and maintain RPC Servers and Validator Nodes so you don’t have to.

AMA Transcript

Ben: 0:02 Hey, Frank!
Frank: 0:04 Hey, can you hear me?
Ben: 0:06 Yeah, you sound great.
Frank: 0:07 Perfect. There we go.
Ben: 0:09 Awesome! By the way, where are you dialing in from?
Frank: 0:16 We actually got here in Salt Lake City at the mountain to HackerHouse, earlier today so.
Ben: 0:26 Oh nice man! That’s awesome. I’ve been following the Twitter account.
Frank: 0:31 Yeah, they’re been do some cool stuff.
Ben: 0:34 Yeah! It seems a fun time man. I might try to hop over there if I get a chance. Hey, thanks for coming on, man. I am super pumped to have you, been a big fan. You guys are just killing it. So, I’m really excited to deep dive and hear a lot of the behind the scenes around both your IDO and how you’ve been operating. And also… Actually, I think, this is the first AMA that we’ve done a post IDO So, I’m really curious. I’m always curious, what happens after an IDO for a project? So, I’m really curious to go into that.
Frank: 1:21 Yeah, man! I’ve been looking forward to this. I really appreciate you guys having me on in the conversation.
Ben: 1:29 Yeah, cool. Awesome. So why don’t we get started? So, I ask the same question for everyone. Which is… Basically, for anyone who doesn’t know about “GenesysGo,” if you can give a brief overview about that. And also share your background, and maybe how you got started.
Frank: 1:50 Yeah, absolutely! Yeah. So, GenesysGo is a blockchain infrastructure project. Specifically, we made our start building and maintaining RPC servers and validators for Solana. Steven, and I, we started 8 or 9 months ago, something like that. Now, God, at this point, we getting close to 11 months ago. But so, we started up building servers, Solana at the time had a huge need for RPC servers. And we’d already been running a Solana validator for a little bit. So, it gave us some good insights into the Infra, needs of first Solana, how the machines work, and how the configs work. And so, we launched that direction and started working with projects on an individual basis. We were getting their rather traffic needs sorted out. And now, we’re in the process of moving on to providing the first truly “Solana Optimized Storage Solution completely on chain. So, it’s been a ton of fun. My background is largely, most actually in legacy finance. Steve and I both actually spent a lot of time as financial planners and traders. And I spent a lot of time doing quantitative trading, probabilistic statistical analysis trading in Legacy Equity Options. And so, I jumped into crypto. It was not that difficult, obviously. And, we’ve always been huge tech and hardware hobbyists in our free time. And so, Solana has really cool, new, consensus mechanisms, and awesome synergy of hardware and software. And, yeah, it’s totally right up our alley.
Ben: 4:08 That’s awesome, man. And, it’s interesting that… And I’ve gone through some of your IDO docs. And we also took a very decentralized approach, it seems, for building out GenesysGo versus some of the other RPC providers that are more centralized. What was behind that decision?
Frank: 4:33 Well, I think, there’s a ton of benefits, a ton of power that is created when something is decentralized. It allows for much easier scale. It allows for redundancy in terms of keeping things up and running. It allows for a true inclusion of everyone instead of having a centralized few people running and controlling everything. But I think, arguably the biggest benefit is the acceleration of innovation that you get when you prioritize decentralization. You have an entire community of people that are extremely invested in not just the success of the project, not just like rooting for you, per se. But actually, like getting in there and helping you improve. And then, those improvements, they have the ability to spread very quickly and be peer-reviewed very quickly. So, there’s a ton of collective brainpower in the Solana ecosystem. And I think, projects, providers, what have you, anyone that fails to decentralize is really failing to take advantage of that collective brainpower, and really cool innovations that are just lying and waiting… People are much smarter than us. They would have the opportunity to create and showcase instead of just get left there. So that, for me, it is one of the huge aspects of, why it’s so important to decentralize things. Because there are just so many cool things that people can come up with. You just give them a chance.
Ben: 6:29 I totally agree. But what do you say to… And I think, this is impressive. What do you say to…? I mean, on the other side of it, with centralization, a lot of it is around. I mean, particularly in your case, performance. And what I thought was impressive was that I saw a tweet or write up or something about how during the IDO, you had actually offloaded a bunch of the load to the shadow network versus having it run on your own. I mean, I think, that’s a crazy awesome testament. But how do you…a Are you able to get the performance that needed for doing this decentralization, even with the decentralization.
Frank: 7:17 For sure! It’s decentralization, it comes in many forms. If you think about Bitcoin Blockchain for a second and I always go back to this one. Because it’s the quintessential experiment with decentralization. It is foundational why. It’s why are we all able to be here. But you have a, a blockchain where everybody’s plugging in and running their own mining, their own mining equipment. Everybody’s contributing their compute to the blockchain but at the end of the day, everybody’s solving the algorithms that the blockchain network has. Basically, all are agreed to solve. And so there’s always that element of what does it take to run, whatever your… Whether it’s a network, a blockchain, a program, platform, whatever, it’s always that element of centralized -call it a- North star. This is what particular people have all agreed that they’re trying to trying to accomplish. And this is the why the people have tried and agreed to accomplish it. And these are the standards by which everyone has agreed to play the game, so to speak. So, you can achieve really strong performance while still having a huge focus on decentralization. Because, at the end of day decentralization is really about sharing ownership. It’s about sharing rewards. It’s about creating a situation where everybody gets to be a part of something bigger than themselves. But that doesn’t mean that somebody can just hop in and serve requests, let’s say, at whatever level, they feel like. There’s still certain minimum thresholds that have to be achieved in order to be a part of the network. There is a minimum amount of compute that has to be able to be provided simply to be able to connect. And, those barriers are necessity that I think, people… A lot of times they only think about decentralization, people look at those barriers of necessity like, this is the minimum speed that we all have to run. They sometimes forget that it’s okay. And it’s important to have those. What truly makes something decentralized is when one person can’t hop in and just shut it off. That was also cool about our about our IDO, being powered by a decentralized network of RPC operators. Those requests, they were going to get served. And the only way they wouldn’t have gotten served as if all of the independent shadow operators decided to turn their machines off, which obviously isn’t going to happen. And so, I think, there’s an element there of… It’s okay to look and say, what’s the minimum performance we need in order to achieve the goals that we have, that we set out to achieve? And, you don’t have to shy away from that. You can lean into it.
Ben: 10:46 That’s very cool. So, I think, I really like your definition. So, basically, it seems like, it’s not decentralized in the sense that anyone can just run and operate. I mean, there’s minimal technical requirements. You need to join to… I guess, it really adds value to the network.
Frank: 11:13 Exactly!
Ben: 11:14 And that’s how you’ve been able to achieve the performance yet still be decentralized. That’s very cool, man.
Frank: 11:22 I appreciate that. It’s been fun. It’s been a ton of fun. And it’s been really cool to watch people come in and just really dive in. We had one of our shadow operators push Piatto to the alpha test with GitHub. It found a way to optimize some of the performance or the cores of the CPU. And he just found that independently. When he started playing with the machine and found something really cool and got it. He was excited to share it. And next thing you knew, our entire network was now performing just a little bit better. Because we had a really cool moment where they felt that they were part of something bigger. And they wanted to contribute.
Ben: 12:12 Yeah. That’s awesome. Man. I really like… It really speaks to me, actually. Because that something, definitely… We haven’t done… We want to work towards… We haven’t yet, but we’re looking. I’m constantly thinking about how to get us moving towards the Dow. So, part of what excites me about talking with you and a few others is hearing what has worked for you.
Frank: 12:54 Yeah! Well, I think one of the important things… I think, one of the mistakes that people make when it comes to thinking about decentralization is that if you’re building something starting out a little bit more centralized is okay. That’s not a bad thing. It’s not something that you need to think about like Jupiter, for instance. You can’t dive right in when you’re still in… Let me re-phrase that. You couldn’t have dive right in when you guys were at the beginning Obviously, now you guys have grown dramatically… You’re sending a ton of traffic, which means you have a ton of users, ton of adoption, and everything, which is awesome. But when you guys were first launching, you couldn’t have hopped in and then super focused on launching in a completely truly decentralized fashion. Because there’s so many super mission critical things that you have to make sure, it’s taken care of. It’s like, our network wasn’t decentralized in the beginning because it’s a super critical function that we provide. We have to make sure there’s a certain element of stability. And there’s a progression to things, I think. And, also, it’s just me personally, but I also don’t think there’s anything wrong with that either. Because, especially in the beginning, when things are in there in a fledgling phase, you need to have that ability to make game-time decisions, or you need that ability to have just 1 or 2 people that are building and orienting the ship, if you will. What I think, it’s interesting is once the projects or providers like us… Once they get once you get to a certain point, then the interesting conversation starts to become around. Okay! At what point does the decentralization process begin? And where do you start that?
Ben: 15:06 That’s a very good question. Yeah. Where do you decentralize? And where the starting point is?
Frank: 15:13 Yeah.
Ben: 15:13 Was there anything that for yourselves, did you… How did you approach it?
Frank: 15:24 For us, the trigger, if you will, of the conversation on how we start decentralizing from here was largely based around stability and performance. And do we have a good enough handle on how to create those things, such that, we can help lead and educate a community. And I think, the term education is super important because when you are pushing towards the decentralization or when the trigger goes off in your brain… We’ve achieved a couple of things that are mission critical. You have to ask yourself, what are the most important things about your project, or any project that… These boxes have to be check no matter what. Once you check them, then you got to ask yourself, now do we have the ability? Can we put the things in place that are needed to teach people who want to participate in this decentralized project, whatever that may be? Have we taught them how to also check said boxes? And for us, that was the big thing. It was like, Okay, now we’ve achieved strong performance with our network, the network’s super stable, we’re powering a ton of traffic, then the conversation switches internally for us. Conversation switch to, what resources do we need to put in place? Can we clearly articulate what we’ve done? Do we have the proper people? Do we have the proper tools to help the community? And effectively replicate what we did, and that’s what we’re doing. With so much of our architecture, we are helping in teaching potential operators how to replicate what we did. They can then, go off and teach other people. And this is a really cool cascady/chain reaction that starts to happen, I think.
Ben: 17:45 Wow! I really love that model. So, it’s like, instead of thinking of yourselves as a service provider for people, I mean, what you are but also really seeing more as a… We’ve done this, but we want to teach others to do it for themselves too but also be a part of the network. I mean, I think that’s a great way of thinking about it. That’s awesome, man.
Frank: 18:09 Appreciate that.
Ben: 18:11 Do you think… And I don’t know, maybe this is just a small part of it. But because some people are asking about NFT’s and things. What is behind the thinking about wanting to launch NFT’s? Did you think that was part of helping to build out the community or coalesce the community, or is it part of your plans for how to decentralize? And then, I’m also curious to know how that is going now?
Frank: 18:52 Yeah. So, the NFT was really taking a stab at trying to do something that would help move the utility of the NFT space forward. I think, we especially see it now. We were seeing it back, then. But a ton of projects just have no real or true utility. It’s just minting to mint, no real reason why. Just minting in order to hopefully flip it later on. And so, with the NFT we truly wanted to try something different. And NFT’s are such an underutilized tool, I think. They’re really cool piece of technology and really cool piece of code. And I hope to see more interesting use cases start to move forward. But as I said the NFT was a… We wanted it to do something to spur that space forward just a little bit. And then, use that as a way to your question, begin the process of building community. Prior to that, it was just a couple of guys building servers and working with the projects that they used our traffic. So, I felt that the NFT space was a really easy way. They’re not used. But they are a really relatable way to connect the community with what we’ve been doing, and begin to build that bridge between doing things in the server room, so to speak. And then, doing things and generating interest and awareness around how this Solana architecture actually works.
Ben: 20:57 Yeah! What I really like about that is in terms of community your core and started off as… I think it’s true. A lot of communities have actual… People building their own servers and nodes, but that’s always a smaller part. People who are… Maybe that’s not what they do, but they’re really into it. And they’re really supportive in other ways. And I feel like what you do, but the NFT was unlocked, like, give them a way to become a part of the whole thing without having to be like…
Frank: 21:36 Exactly a hardware builder.
Ben: 21:39 Yeah.
Frank: 21:39 100%!
Ben: 21:42 Yeah, I mean, so… And actually, I mean, it’s cool to see that the NFT prices held up so well, comparatively. I mean, how is it going in your mind now? And where do you think you might take it or do you have any plans?
Frank: 22:03 Now, So this thing, There’s always… We’re always going to have plans for it and build things with the NFT in mind. I think, there’s so much. Again, as I said, there’s so much, so many cool things that can be done using NFT’s. And I think, it would be a huge waste for us to just be like, Alright, NFT was tied to a token. And everybody stake unity, and got your tokens. We had our fun experiment about decentralizing raises, and now we move on. That’s not what we want. As we move forward, there’s always going to be more and more use cases, in which… If you’re thinking about NFT’s from the right lens, then, you’ll always see more and more use cases for NFT’s. And the Shadowy Super Coder NFT, rather than recreate new ones like mint new NFT’s, anything like that. I think, it’d be just a… Candidly, I think that would just be an effective, just like, Oh, look! We’re going to try for a cash grab. Why go create new NFT’s? We already have incredibly cool collection that already exists with plenty of supply. So, our existing the shadowy super coder NFT is going to be the cornerstone of all the NFT related aspects of what we’re building. Because you also think that the community who holds the NFT’s is what they deserve. They don’t deserve to have another project or another mint of some kind. I think, it’s little crappy when it’s like…
Ben: 24:14 Yeah we know that you mentioned that NFT. We know that you’ve been buying trading this NFT. You’re super invested in this NFT. But here’s our new collection, and the utility of this collection is going to be this… It’s like…
Frank: 24:26 Come on! Be less obvious!
Ben: 24:33 It’s so true. Yeah. I’m curious to see how people develop it. I mean, I’ve been seeing some interesting ideas. I think, I heard that Chill chat is doing something where the first-gen NFT’s can mint the next-gen or something. I could be wrong on this. But I think that’s more interesting than, Oh! Gen 1 holder get gen-2 or get a portion of gen 2 or something like that. That is okay, but you’re still… What does that mean? Because I think for you, the NFT’s aren’t just an NFT. It’s sort of like, there’s a strong identity to the community and to what you’re doing and people who support you. It’s so…
Frank: 25:30 100%! Yeah! And I think that’s something everybody talks about the importance of community and importance of building an entity community. And I don’t know. It’s me, it’s just those things where like…
Ben: 25:48 If that’s your focus, and…
Frank: 25:49 If you truly recognize just how important that is, then why are you diluting it? I think, at the end of the day, if you’re building something real, you don’t want to be wasting your time and energy trying to figure out like, what’s our next in a tea look like? And how do we like… What’s the meat going to look like… Focus on building what you’re building. Focus on building your product and your platform. And let the community continue to build, to grow, to strengthen, and to evolve. But don’t force the community to chase the next mint. Because you already have community members there. They’ve been supporting you from the get go. And you’re leading them to focus on building out a bigger, better, stronger platform as opposed to trying to build height for your gen-2 mint, when you already have a perfectly good NFT right there that people already are really excited about.
Ben: 27:01 Yeah. And I think it speaks to the mindset whether or not you really care about growing community or you think of that more as customers.
Frank: 27:13 Exactly. Yeah. I love the way you said that.
Ben: 27:18 Cool. I want to switch gears a little bit and just ask about the whole post IDO stuff. What’s been going on? Like, I mean, what was it after right after? Or what are you doing now?
Frank: 27:40 Yeah. So, we are hardcore, just focus on building. Now, it’s funny. It’s been 3 weeks or 4 weeks since the IDO. And it’s interesting. Because we were, over there, over the past, 4 weeks been building. It’s been interesting. Because our community’s been really on point with understanding the focus and not understanding the sense of like, Oh, guys, let them have time! Let them build! But more like, understanding like that, this is the way how a project cycles go. And so, from the get go, we’ve been super clear about what we’re building, articulating guide, what that looks like. Candidly, we are not leaning into the hype train, if you will. In the sense, we go to keep the hype. And we got to keep people tweeting or chatting about the token or the NFT or whatever it is. It’s just pure focus on standing up storage, decentralizing storage, rewarding those who are participating or who are contributing storage. And, I think this is where I was really interested and curious to see what would happen post IDO. Because in between the Mints and our IDO, we had 2 months of educating our community, helping the community in teaching to see beyond a floor price or beyond a token price. The really key to that is… The super clear expectations of we’re not like… The project that you want to be trying to chase to flip. Or we’re not the project that you want be trying to hop into and expect 50x return or something like that. Because what we’re building is meant to be sustainable key piece of Solana infrastructure. And we’re a lot less concerned about where Solana is at and what Solana is doing? Tomorrow or next week, we want to see Solana grow and scale over the next 5 years. And in order to do that, Solana needs to have their harddrive bolted into it yet. And we still have a strong network layer built in. And those things need to be very decentralized. But I think we’re just… Based on my observations, I think, a lot of projects, especially post IDO, tend to live by their token price, which means, you die by your token price. It’s very much a double edged sword. And if you’re serious about building… You’re acting in community and you’re truly building, then you should just know that the utility of what you’re building is going to take care of the community, that’s supporting you. But it’s been… Like I say, it’s been really cool because our experience, post IDO anyway was very much one of watching, like, our existing community embrace new members, educate new members, help people understand, this isn’t your quick pump and dump project. There is a true goal is for product and whatever that is directly tied to the token This is a true utility token. And watching that education process take place, it’s been awesome. Because it just continues to just be like, free us up to be able to just continue to focus on building. And so, it’s one of the things that… I think, people talk a lot about community. But there are elements of like, having a community that doesn’t just equate to, we have a discord, there’s a lot of messages going off every day. It’s a labor of love. It’s the education. It’s answering the same question over and over again. It’s directing people to resources, instead of answering the question. Even though, it takes you same amount of time in teaching new members, how to fish and all those things. Arguably, it is just as important as the actual thing that you said, you’re trying to build. Because that’s what allows you to continue to focus on building what it is, you’re trying to build. We keep the community oriented with you because you’re taking them along the journey, or taking them along with you on the journey, as opposed to the only time they hear from you is when the token price pops or something like that.
Ben: 33:12 Right. Yeah, I completely agree. I mean, honestly, I think, unfortunately, there’s a lot of great projects that have that long term focus. But I think, the long term view is just probably one of the clearest indicators for me on the quality of a project. So… And the shorter term you get, the more you really get closer to rug.
Frank: 33:46 Yeah! 100%.
Ben: 33:52 So, I mean, I totally get the vibe. And it seems like that you’ve got… Because I feel like, one question for me about whenever anyone launches a token, I mean, there’s all those token questions. And there’s all those like, especially when the price dips. And people get worried. Have you had to deal with any of that or your community just been strong enough to keep the faith, and it’s not been such a… Because I find that it can be a distraction.
Frank: 34:26 Oh, yeah. 100%! And I mean, they’ve been wonderful. Like I say, I can’t thank our community enough for how amazing they actually are. And I think, it’s easy for anybody to want to avoid thinking about those moments when it’s how do you quick set community up to help them and not just understand but as keep the faith, so to speak. And that all comes down to clear messaging. One thing that I relate to a lot is look at big companies in legacy business world… I don’t know. Amazon and Apple they don’t use… If Apple share price drops, Apple is not changing what they’re building. They’re not changing the direction of what they’re building. They know that what they’re building and the path by which they’re building it. They know that, it’s over the long term. It takes care of the company, it takes care of investors and shareholders. And if Apple share price takes a nosedive. They’re not all the sudden coming out and say like, Okay! How do we redesign the iPhone so that we can make the share price pop? It’s that type of short term thinking that Franklin murder’s projects, and something that… I think, people and communities personally respects when you are just candidly transparent with them. Look, here’s what we’re building, why we’re building it, and how we’re doing it. And here’s how it directly ties to our token. If you have that, and you actually do have a true direct tie to the token, your use case, and you’re solving a natural need, then everything else is just a short t-term noise. And, frankly, we would be being incredibly irresponsible, and very much to the detriment of the project, if we were checking and washing the token price. Because that influences much more than just how a community communicates. And so, I think, I guess that’s… If you’re looking at a project… This is just like with any token, or if you’re looking at a project and there’s a direct line of our token gets used in the actual project and there’s a direct line between the use case and the token and what the team is building., then it comes down to a question. Do you think the team can execute on that? We have the bonus of the building for 7 or 8 months before we did the IPO, at which time we were able to showcase for those people who are interested in becoming part of our community. Look, we actually can build. We actually do build. And we actually get results. And so, honestly, I think the whole, just get out there and build is so underrated. Because projects like, especially, in the NFC space, they want to launch the NFT. and then start building. Their first step is to jump into the actual NFT. Our first step was to build the product, build an actual project, and get it live. Get it doing what it is and supposed. We said, we were going to have to do. Because frankly, it’s a lot easier for people in our community to keep the faith when they can literally go and see dozens of projects. We actually power right out. It’s a lot easier for… Maybe it’s something that we take for granted a little bit, the fact that we do have a live working project. Maybe, it gives us the ability to be a little more like, No, let’s just build! Because we got this. Because we can fall back on real life example of like… Look at, how much Solana’s traffic that we power. If we can do that, trust me, we can do this.
Ben: 39:41 But I think that’s something that’s so underrated. And Frank, I think that’s something people as they’re looking at NFC, Mints or IDOS, they should almost demand like, what do you have this working right now? Like, show me something! Don’t show me your roadmap. Show me something that actually working. I can’t agree more. I mean, honestly, like, I think that it’s interesting. Because my takeaway is about what you said was, -one of them was like- if you align yourself to long term value, then all those other things don’t matter as much… Because you’re bringing utility anyway for the long term.
Frank: 40:34 Exactly.
Ben: 40:35 That’s going to anchor everything. And it’ll keep people… People have a foundation to believe in and to hold, rather than just having the price. If it’s just the price…
Frank: 40:50 Exactly
Ben: 40:51 Then you’re screwed. And I also think it speaks to what you just say, which is a lot of people are just rushing to launch an NFT or actually maybe rushing… Maybe they’re building something. And they have a token. They’re rushing the token because they think the token, the momentum, the energy around the token… And an IDO, which does give you momentum, energy will lift them up. But if there’s no fundamental utility… I would say, maybe long term utility pinning it… When the price comes crashing down, it’ll it also negatively… They’re in this weird place where they both have to whether… It’s harder to focus just on product and building because you use the token to anchor the project, rather than the product or the value you’re delivering anchor it.
Frank: 41:39 Exactly!
Ben: 41:40 Then do both at the same time, which is really hard. It becomes really hard.
Frank: 41:44 100% Yeah! I think, yeah! I mean, that’s something even we remind ourselves of… Because it’s like… We all want to be high fiving each other about the fact that we just made a new high or the floor prices are making new highs or whatever. That’s fine. It’s exciting. But it’s like, telling our community that we’ll celebrate and brag about our floor price, all day long. But we’re not going to care if it drops. And the reason, I say that we’re not going to care is because that’s all short term. And you don’t want this. Trust me, you do not want that the builders in your project thinking short term. Because if they’re thinking short term, then that means that they’re being reactive to everything. It means that they don’t actually have a roadmap. They might have written one. They might say that they do. But they don’t actually have a roadmap inside or internally. They don’t have something that is a guiding North star, if you will, and that. Because they’re reacting to every short term thing. And it’s changing the way in which they’re approaching things. And it’s funny. Because it’s like you want watch people’s actions, not their words. Everybody is like, all projects, they love to… We’re building for the long term. We’re focused on this long term vision. We’re focused on building this or that, or whatever. It’s going to take Solana everybody! Bear with us. And all that’s great. But then, when you see things start to hit -Let’s call it- a rough patch, or the community needs encouragement or something like that. And then you start to see them talking about things like, we’re working on building the hype back. But you don’t want that. It’s not sustainable. Hype is a sprint. Hype is a short term burst of energy and activity. And again, short term bursts are not sustainable. What you want is, you want long term engagement. You want long term interest. You want to see a community and you want to see a group of people that are frankly becoming something greater than the sum of its parts. But hype is fun. Hype is exciting. But hype doesn’t build projects. Hype gives you bursts of momentum. It gives you that initial push. But it’s like the difference between sprinting and running long distance. There is a reason marathon runners say that they pace out every single mile. And they paced their speeds along every single mile. They don’t just get out there and haul ass fast as they can, the entire time. There’s a lot of thought and strategically that goes into that. So, yeah! So that’s the thing, it’s easy for founders. It’s something that we like. We consistently have to remind ourselves that we’re not looking to generate and build hype. We’re looking to generate and build long-term value. And I think, we’ve done that.
Ben: 45:22 Yeah! I agree. I mean, I love the vision and the problem that you’re solving. I think, it’s great. And I completely agree. I mean, hype is very important but it can’t be your anchor. It can’t be your North star.
Frank: 45:36 Yes, exactly! Yeah.
Ben: 45:42 And that’s a hard question too. I think, a lot of people miss out. Because you have to ask yourself. Figuring out your North star is really hard. Because, basically, you have to be the first believers of whatever it is you’re going to do. Because it could be something that no one else believes in, or people aren’t into it yet. Because you haven’t gotten the attraction yet. And I think some people shortcut that and be like, Alright, let me just see if I can get some hype.
Frank: 46:16 Yeah! 100%. I think, we’re at a stage right now where we’re building everything out where you want things to be a little quiet. Because that means our resources are being spent on actually getting storage stood up, or getting cluster stood up. At the moment, where we got the machine clusters, I stood up and configured. And it solving issues around effectiveness, optimization, performance, speed in the query layer, figuring out how to store data. That’s easy. Figuring out, how to make a fast query layer that’s easy for us, it’s a matter of all the different use cases and a question. Do we… What kind of product we want to launch? Do we want to launch something that is a piece of what we’re trying to do? And then, spend time and energy iterating on that same thing, while its live? Or do we want to take the extra 2 weeks to build out something or to finish building out something that is more polished and finalized? Because we’re in a situation where we don’t… Let me rephrase that, when we first got going with the RPC. side of things and we were standing up servers. We were standing them up, and onboarding projects. Here’s a ton of learning as we went. There was a ton of not a trial and error, per say. But a ton of…
Frank: 48:27 We just brought this project online, but here’s the things that we need to do. Bring more servers. And here’s the ripple effect of that. For once, we actually have the opportunity to do all of that in a controlled setting. Especially, we’re talking about data. You don’t want to be in a situation where you’re trying to get access to your data. And a team is pushing out something because they just want to get something live. It’s data integrity, the ability to serve the data. That’s also incredibly vital to projects and ability to function. And frankly, I have people who are like, Man, I’d love to hear something about the specific of the building right now. And I’d love to see something launch right now. It’s like, okay, cool. Yeah! We could do that. We could push something out right now. But if there’s an error with it, or a flaw somewhere, or if there’s something that like… Because we were trying to rush a product that didn’t get fully tested or just whatever, then you set yourself back many paces. Because projects that would… If you are eagerly anticipating your solution, well, they start to have a bad experience. And now you got to win them back. As opposed to delivering a strong user experience like right out the gate. And I think, it’s easy for people to miss the fact that there’s a transition that we… For better or worse, underwent in that, it’s… We have become a lot more… We become higher profile -let’s call it- in the sense of when we when we do set… Shadow drive is live. It’s going to be something that is looked at and scrutinized and tested very aggressively, let’s call it. And what we don’t want to do is we don’t want to waste the credibility capital, if you will, that we have been able to generate by working our butts off. Simply, because, there were a handful of people that are basically, after 4 weeks, like, Okay! I need to hear something now. But “now,” you don’t. Calm yourself. Again, that’s short term thinking.
Ben: 51:25 Yeah! I agree. I mean, we have a similar situation with our SDK. So, we have a number of protocols and projects using our SDK. And so, it’s a similar thing. We can’t really… So for example, when we launched split trading, which is a pretty new thing and incredibly valuable that a lot of people would like to have access to it. It’s not something, we can rush out, necessarily and potentially… For any project that’s using us… If it causes issues with their users that would hurt our credibility.
Frank: 52:07 Exactly!
Ben: 52:08 People will not rely on that SDK. So, I think, for us, a part of what we do is to move fast and to build out things in a good way with less issues, I would say. No one’s perfect, but we try to simplify the features. What’s a simple thing we could launch that, hopefully has less…? The more complex something is, the more potential for failure. The second thing that we do is that we have a main net staging, which is a limited number of people can see it. And we can test on it. And then, the other thing is that we can phase it by… Once that feels pretty good, we can launch it on Jupiter site, which we’ll see most like, all our volume, which is a potential to catch any last things before making it live to our SDK partners. And I think that’s a reasonable process for us.
Frank: 53:15 Yeah.
Ben: 53:15 Do you have a similar thing in terms of how you go through stuff? Phases and milestone or something. Yeah.
Frank: 53:24 Yeah. 100%. I mean, I love what you said there about not just the projects that use your SDK. Not just process, that plug in you guys. But I love the fact that you’re talking about thinking about the users of your users. And that is just so incredibly spot on. Because, at the end of the day, you can have great relationships with other Dev Teams, other projects and use your SDK. And they can be super understanding. And that’s all great. But if they’re like… And I’m just making this up here, if the users of, let’s say, Jet, have a really bad experience, and it’s because they’re connected to you or they’re connected to us, it doesn’t matter how much Jet likes a provider. There’s an element of trust that is incredibly hard to earn back. And I think that’s the thing that a lot of people in communities… I wouldn’t say they don’t understand it. I think that I think they do, but they’re disconnected from it. There’s an element. So, again we go back to education of having to make sure that you’re consistent in your messaging, you’re transparent in your messaging. And, again, you’re helping bring them along on the journey. Because they need to understand that ripple effect is potentially a huge and incredibly difficult to come back from if it goes against you. That’s your… Literally, if it takes weeks to stand up a product, it takes months to earn credibility back. And it doesn’t matter how good your product is. It doesn’t matter, how well intentioned you were. But I think that’s the thing, it is very easy to miss. And to your point, we have very similar processes in terms of the stage by which we build things. We’re going to stand it up, roll it out, internally, play with it, test it, break it, over, and over again. We will roll it out to a select group in a very closed door setting. Because, again, it’s all about making sure when you’re a service provider, and you’re providing an ecosystem wide service, like you all do, for instance. It’s really important that your end user of your users have a great experience. Because the end users of your user, they don’t care that where the problem is along the line. They just know that they had a problem. They weren’t able to do the thing that they wanted to do. And so they’re just going to go blast into discord.
Ben: 56:36 And they should… They have the right to. They had a bad experience.
Frank: 56:40 But it’s our job as projects… Let’s call it that a little more on the back end of things. It’s our job to make sure that we’re delivering that great experience. We’re being super methodical about it. And as I said, you can’t rush that you don’t want to.
Ben: 56:59 Yeah, I totally agree. It’s funny. Actually, we have been utilized… Put this up with the trivia, by the way. But we’ve… It’s been great to hear you. We’re running a little bit long. We’re getting close to the hour mark, to be honest. I’m going to switch to trivia questions in just a bit. But I wanted to ask in terms of what you have been building out… I mean, it sounds like, you’ve been working on the shadow drive. And it seems like the current things that you’re facing is speeding up the queries to the drive. Is that where you’re at now with the shadow drive or what can you share in the…
Frank: 57:54 I mean, that’s one element of what we’re working on. But that’s, I guess that’s one element. There are multiple things that we are working on. There’s a really cool opportunity with what we’re building to not just jump, not just launch into storage. What do you do with that storage once you have a store whether it’s your jpg or account state, or what have you. There’s are many… There’s a ton of projects that they’re doing. They’re spending a ton of time and energy in trying to figure out cute ways to index things, and cash things. And, basically, they are trying to avoid storing it. And we have a situation because what we’re building now is… We’ve going to super foundation. We’re just like, straight up at the data level. We have the ability to end up in a bunch of different backyards, so to speak, of different projects. And those backyards are… Again, these things are as simple as, let’s store your JPEG. So you can store your NFC metadata on chain. But it’s also gets into things like indexing and caching on such a fundamental level where you don’t have to worry about, what you’re indexing. What data you’re trying to speed up because you can just speed all that up. Because again, it’s just stored right there. But there’s also things that we have taken to consideration such as where the direction Solana is going. The work that Solana is doing as they’re working through their various bugs. There’s a ripple effect there. So, every time a new update gets pushed or every time there’s a new bug in… Let’s just say, the feeder queue or right now, there’s a big problem of a transaction requests getting dropped. All of those things necessitates, any examination on our part, let’s call it, In the sense… Okay, as they make changes, how does that affect what we’re building? So, over the past couple of weeks, Solana’s had some network turbulence on the validator level. And what we’re building and the way we’re building gets into the validator network. Then, it becomes really important for us to work closely with them and understand that what are the changes, they’re making and how they are making them? And then, make sure that we’re rolling out those changes up into, what it is that we’re building. So, I use, as I said about the query layer. I talked about query layer as an example. Because there’s multiple pieces being built. And there’s no reason… We wouldn’t want any project to be building like… Let me build this piece. And then, this piece, and this piece. You want them to building concurrency with one another. So that way, everything just snaps into place.
Ben: 1:01:33 That’s interesting. I think, if you don’t mind, we’ll go a little bit longer with this AMA. Because I think, you’re saying some interesting things. And I do want to get to them. But urm, Cool. It sounds like, well, … One thing, it sounds like, what you’re saying is by focusing on the performance of the shadow drive… It sounds like maybe what you’re going after, there’s no need to index anymore. If you can make it as fast as I feel a lot of the indexing is just for performance reasons. Is that the part of the problem you’re trying to tackle; you think or?
Frank: 1:02:18 I wouldn’t say that. I would say that there are ways that indexing can be improved on if you have access to a deeper data set.
Ben: 1:02:31 I see. So that’s where… When you’re saying that you’re focusing on the query and the performance or there is being able to really bring that deeper data set more to the surface for people. So that they can…
Frank: 1:02:53 Well. No. As I said, Remember, I said that’s one of the things we’re focusing on? That was just an example.
Ben: 1:03:00 Okay. Got it. Wow! It sounds like you guys are doing a lot. I want to ask one question from the community. Just because I think, it’s something that they’re curious about, which is that the IDO platform that you developed, what are your plans for that? Are you launching that? It sounded like… Are you open sourcing that or what are you…?
Frank: 1:03:29 Yeah! So that was a pretty simple exercise for us considering that… Basically, we built our own IDO platform. With everything that we had already pre-built to launch our idea, it’s based on 90% of the way to just completely automated IDO platform, some changes in terms of adding parameters, adding some guardrails, but beyond that, that’s effectively checking something. As I say, already basically built and so one of the things that we’ve talked about pretty frequently is that the shadow token is meant to be a multi-use case token. It’s just like NFT’s. We’re not going to go spin up a new NFT every time we come up with a new idea and try to make people mental. That’s scam and cash grabby, in my opinion. The tokens are not any different. And there’s the mentality that you create as much value for the community as possible. And, the IDO platform, which again, the keyword there is platform, not launchpad but platform… The IDO platform was a very easy thing to bolt together. In which just add a little more utility to or it adds a little more utility to the token. I think, the key thing there is that to date there really is no truly, trustless in a sense of talking to all completely smart contract powered, but trustless automated and important, most importantly touchless IDO platform mechanism, like on Solana, and by that, I mean, right now you have to contact or you have to show your project to whatever Launch Pad you’re trying to show it to. And, try to get their approval. Give them a percentage of your tokens. So, it’s a whole thing. We have no interest in in vetting projects. We have no interest in trying to get portions of other project’s tokens. Yeah, we are solely focused on use cases and bolstering the use cases for the token that we spent a ton of time creating and planning for it. And, we also don’t want to participate in this culture of token dumping that seems to evolve where everybody’s trying to get percentages of everybody else’s tokens. And at the end of the day, it’s like people very quickly forget that. Yaah! No matter, no project group that has acquired or accumulated 10 percentage stakes in different tokens or going to want to just hold all those tokens. They’re going to start dumping them at some point. And that’s just not something we’re interested in and participating in. So yeah, he whole thought process with the IDO platform was, this is an easy lift. Again, it solves another key for the ecosystem. And it adds little bit more utility to our existing token.
Ben: 1:07:20 Ah, that makes a lot of sense. I totally get your point of view. I think it’s refreshing. It’s sort of like not a launchpad, but an IDO platform. I think, you guys did a fantastic job. I mean, I was really impressed with the performance of the IDO platform, given that Solana was having issues that day, too. And I think, one under looked attribute to IDO platforms. So…
Frank: 1:07:51 Exactly.
Ben: 1:07:53 Really, kudos for that, man. Cool. And is that live now or is it you still planning on… Are you making that available to anyone soon?
Frank: 1:08:09 So, it’ll hopefully be the live soon. We’re finishing up 5 security audit, which is a bottleneck for a lot of projects at the moment. But that process processes fingers crossed, finishing up very soon. As I say, stay tuned.
Ben: 1:08:25 Cool. Awesome, man. Well, thank you so much for your time. I think, I’m going to cut short the Trivia this time. Because you definitely shared a lot of great thoughts and great alphas. So, it was awesome to have you. This is great. It was an amazing turnout, by the way. I think, at our peak, maybe it was around 220 people showed up. So yeah, thank you so much for the chat. This is amazing to get behind the scenes with you.
Frank: 1:08:51 Yeah! I really appreciate you guys having me. It was a fun conversation. And let’s see. Let’s do it again.
Ben: 1:08:58 Cool. Awesome. Well, thanks, everyone for tuning in. And we’ll see y’all at the next one. And you guys all have a good day.
Frank: 1:09:07 Thanks a lot, everybody.
Ben: 1:09:09 Cheers.