Re-post, Andy Freer (former Dash CTO) shared some interesting thoughts on Dash Discord today.

stan.distortion

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Oct 30, 2014
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Re-post of a re-post, from Discord to Reddit to here. Reddit post is here:
https://www.reddit.com/r/dashpay/comments/l96td1
Andy Freer (former Dash CTO) shared some interesting thoughts on Dash Discord today. Here's a summary.

Andy Freer is the former Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of Dash who is now taking the lead on Dash Incubator. Andy's contributions have been instrumental to Dash's technological progress over the years and now he's creating quite a buzz within Dash development via Dash Incubator, which is a bounty program for incentivizing development on the Dash network. It was a very interesting read which deserves to be posted here before the comments are buried in Discord chats. Andy is usually quite active chatting with other developers at the Dash Devs Discord, so this was an opportunity for the overall community at Dash Discord to get an insight into where he sees Dash going this year and his idea on strategies to drive utility and adoption. In short he is very optimistic of Dash's future, says Dash is working on "(what I consider to be) the best and most disruptive forthcoming innovation in this space", and expressed full confidence in the DCG team and their technical capabilities.

I have consolidated his recent Discord comments which took place over a few hours, and added context in bold.

Andy was asked to share his opinion on how he anticipates driving growth for the Dash network in 2021.
I see the key to driving network growth as reaching a broader market of users through making Dash easier to use and providing new use cases outside of the current crypto market which is what Usernames & Dapps enable us to do. The key to achieving that will be driving traction and engagement across 2 new groups on the new features: driving mainstream users to signup to Dash (something which is not possible today in any crypto effectively) and secondly driving developers to create trustless end-user applications monetized with Dash (again not possible in any crypto today) and driving the users to those Dapps. For example, Dash.org landing page should be a signup page to Dash itself and one team focus and are measured on the number of signups we are growing.
Secondly we need a dev landing page to onboard new devs (mainly Javascript and Mobile) and furnish Dapp devs with the examples, tools and guidance they need to create great and engaging use cases. For example, payment use cases for retail, subscriptions, social media use cases, games/NFT, ecommerce, kickstarting, video, gaming, any kind of apps that will drive engagement and are monetized via Dash, it all feeds back to increased economic activity on our blockchain, and we need to incentivize both groups, e.g. $10 to legit new signups, and dev funding programs such as Dash Incubator... either way, we need to be growing both groups in tandem and we should be incentivizing people who help achieve that growth.
A Discord user makes a statement comparing this type of activity to airdrops.
It's not an airdrop of tokens in anonymous wallets... we're talking legit unique users signing up to Dash itself. Thats something we want to grow as much as possible, because those users are the customers for what the Dapp devs are building (and potential customers for our money chain off the back of that). Giving the credits removes the friction for that on-ramp within the onboarding and will increase Dapp traction, that should be the focus. The whole point here is to remove friction to onboarding and using crypto. Giving unique users a leg-up to try Dapps (that are driven by economic tx) is a no-brainer. It gives us engaged users that didn't need to learn about wallets, exchanges and withdrawals as their first step. At the end of the day for this to work (and going back to the whole point Evan started this) there needs to be a seamless / frictionless process between telling your normie friend 'hey try Dash', giving them a URL and them actually using Dash for something useful in the same time they do the same on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook etc. Having a signup on the homepage (or some homepage), onboarding to DashPay and receiving small amount of credits, then trying some of the best Dapps all with a few clicks to that is the key. That is where our funding / mindshare needs to be routing right now, not some of the stupidity going on about marketing and 'high level decision making'. Once we have seemless integration with Dapps into DashPay, this will provide some very compelling use cases that anyone can onboard and use, without needing to understand crypto or jump through ton of hoops. We'll start from a great position... new use cases, frictionless onboarding, signup and use Dash with named account from any device. It's hardly something to be negative about. The value will come from mindshare / funding / incentives put into growing that. Marketing can play a part, just not an important part, same as it doesn't with any disruptive startups (and anyone who legit has a background in this knows already).

Continued...
 

stan.distortion

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Oct 30, 2014
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When asked about Dash's data on Google trends.

Google trends of the search term 'Dash' is meaningless. Dash (the crypto) is a tiny fraction of the market of Dash products (and no I don't think this is an issue in the long term). Second... Google search for alts isn't the main driver or any kind of significant driver at all. People google for 'bitcoin' - but they learn about other cryptos from social media from people already in the space. Within Crypto... anyone around the last 3 years knows about Dash already. The issue is we haven't delivered any innovation with a differential significant enough to drive adoption within the space (which is what then drives new users) since 2016... and because our segment is already saturated with coins with much higher network effect and social presence, but we're about to change that by offering users new features they're going to enjoy and that our competitors don't and we need to focus on that to grow it. This is a tech space... disruptive tech... the innovation is the marketing. The space ranks itself via markets and influencers... new users come in based on the social media of those people and word of mouth and based on what's new and interesting and whats go the buzz / viral uptake. You cannot fake that with marketing in this kind of space. Every Dash spent on traditional 'marketing' right now is a Dash that could be spent on (what I consider to be) the best and most disruptive forthcoming innovation in this space, and the kicker is this... yes we can flip Dash back to a leading crypto... but we need to unify around how to do that... as I said we need to:

a) grow signups (a new feature in crypto) and;

b) grow Dapps for those signups to use directly in browser / mobile and within use cases they already like (social media, video, p2p commerce, e-commerce etc).

Anything else is going to continue sending our ranking in the wrong direction, so please lets all focus and get our game together (and stop trying the same non-innovation strategies that have failed us and get behind the devs who are working real hard to make this happen). We need traction on Dapps... But the core dapps are actually just helpers for existing transactional use cases. For example DashPay is c2c - if we add in Payment Requests (which I know Quantum Explorer etc are planning) then that covers b2c. We've also been working on retail Dapps at PoS etc. So actually uptake of Dapps doesn't have to depend on the advanced ones like decentralized Twitter.. they can make existing Dash cases lot better, username based and frictionless onboarding, usage, both for end-users and merchants. Underneath that our existing features, which although didn't keep us at the front for the reasons I mention so far, when we fix the last mile of removing end-user friction / seamless onboarding and usage, sure they will be indispensable to actually scale and remove delays for users. What I'm saying is whether you think Dash should be allowing decentralized apps or not, the core use cases are actually very simple and very close to what most people are focused on: growing Dash as an easy to use digital cash with the best usability, speed, security in the space...The original point of Dapps was just removing pain-points in the pre and post payments process. For example the exchange of addresses / tx construction between 2 parties (local or remote) before the tx broadcast, then after confirmation the exception handling of over/under payments, refunds, and meaningful/persistant histories between named parties to make auditing / CRM etc lot easier. What happened was the way this was implemented opened the door for a lot more advanced scenarios... but this is really the core use cases of Dash Dapps... they make transactions easier. Again, rather than counter to our core strategy, surely this is something we should be investing in as much as possible and integrating into all our existing core operations of integrations, biz dev, marketing.

In response to a comment by a Discord user (shortened):
"I believe Dash can reach to $500 or $1000 in a very short time if right steps are taken, just think about how much this price increase allow us to spend more on innovation and improving the product."

I mean this is the problem with our decline in rankings, we get this kind of low-end pump and dump talk to dazzle 'investors'.... you should really check out some of the pump and dump groups or start a YT trading channel you might have more luck. Dash is a coin of innovation... we've deprioritized that for lot of failed strategies. Good news is that innovation is soon to launch and all the great devs who are the ones really doing the work here can come forward and make Dash great again. My work is helping our devs to innovate... thats the real driver here and what the market is valuing as it has/does for any leading decentralized crypto project. The less we spend on development both protocol and ecosystem, the longer things are gonna take...people should check how many devs are working on our biggest features and compare this to the total budgets here to understand... anyway we'll get there with patience so no problem from me. The core payment dapps for c2c and b2c would improve our existing offerings a lot - be fully username based and very simple to use (no need to construct tx, manage a wallet, exchange addresses, automated payment requests, subscriptions, recurring payments, invoicing etc). But as I've been saying I think due to the current crypto market we can offer more reasons to adopt Dash than simpler payments to non-crypto users... one obvious market right now is decentralized social media, whether thats messaging, video, there's lot of demand for alternative solutions. But essentially any existing Web 2.0 application that uses fiat for monetization (whether thats paying creators, advertisers, p2p commerce) can be built as a Web 3.0 app monetized with Dash on Platform... so its whatever developers decide to create and my strategy is just to attract and incentivize as much of them as possible, to provide use cases for the new users we want to signup.

You can see some of the use cases community devs have created already on the Incubator: https://dashincubator.app/output

Also there's a doc with ideas that weren't started yet here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1NQbRk38I-43FIGcy2FyK4DW_Er_FknpMB2IQprul-Ec/edit?usp=sharing

And more ideas in the first column 'Concepts' on the Trello here: https://trello.com/b/FPJzDcok/dash-incubator-app

Discord user (shortened): "I agree with focusing on development right now but the market does not care. LLMQ's, chain locks, etc. Have limited to no impact on our price. A useful Dapp actually will though."

LLMQ / Chainlocks / DML don't provide anything really new / disruptive for end-users. Evolution is entirely focused on radically changing the experience for the end-user - crypto is really hard to onboard (understand wallets, addresses, concepts, blockchains) so lets just let them signup with an account they can access from any device with a single password (12 words) that contains everything they need. Paying people is really hard because you need to exchange 'addresses' which are stupidly long numbers - lets just make that another username you can connect with one-time then you don't have to trust anyone your payment is going to the right place. You want to buy a burger in a store, the customer doesn't need to mess around typing in addresses and the price, they just connect to the merchant via QR scan and the merchant pings them the invoice they click 'yes' on when it pops up. Then leading to the Web 3.0 use cases where you don't need to signup to a site with an email, you just scan the QR with your DashPay Wallet, and you're logged in. When you tweet and it wants you to pay credits, your DashPay wallet just signs that silently in the background for you and you don't.
I think largely the crypto market itself values innovation based on disruption i.e. how does new feature X give crypto Y an advantage in gaining future market share like most new tech markets - recently that's been Bitcoin as kinda reserve currency status within backdrop of dollar devaluation / inflation of asset & commodity prices / bond yields and it already innovated enough for that with its positioning / network effect, then you have DeFi which is providing advanced decentralized financial products like lending, derivatives, dexes and Ethereum as the platform underneath it. For Dash our strategy derived from our new tech is really ease of use - giving all the mainstream users who donperhaps t understand how to get into or use crypto to do that really easily, and bring crypto closer into the apps they already use (through web 3.0 enabling them and using Dash for the underlying monetization where possible). LLMQ / Chainlocks etc are critical to the underlying working of that as is our scalability and instant confirmations... but i've always said I think we need to complete deliver of the ease of use side then market that when its marketable. I don't really want to be spending time getting vocal on issues that don't really concern me and with my obvious undiplomatic / no filter style which I'm fine with (hence how I don't usually come forward on anything). Obviously I'm passionate about our strategy but I'm confident that our new tech will drive the right strategy and actually from my perspective, both on the tech side and interaction with DCG from top to bottom, I'm super happy / aligned and things actually going better than ever for the goals we've been set. I just get frustrated when I see diversion from that and things that with my own experience don't add up.. which translates to essentially less funding for developing the innovation I think we need to achieve the right strategy which is DashPay / Platform backed up by our leading backend features, and more being spent on things that don't achieve that. That's all it boils down to. My opinion will always be deliver and grow Evolution through support and funding, drive signups, drive use cases (Dapps) and hold back the rest until that baby is born and happily toddling around the market as I'm sure it will be soon thanks to DCG coming through on that and bunch of really smart community devs. I'm around here if anyone wants me anyway I'm just gonna keep focusing on development.

A Discord user suggests that maybe we should be getting more communication from DCG leading up to the launch of major developments.

I think with DCG you have to give them leeway prior to mainnet, because I don't think community understands the pressure they're under internally and actually how hard they're working behind the scenes (like 16 hr days). From the outside they can seem kinda aloof and don't care sometimes actually internally its the opposite (time spent talking about mainnet delivery is time taken away from that delivery).. I think once they deliver they'll have more time for community interaction because the hardest part (first mainnet launch of L2 which is a massive deal for them especially) will take off a lot of pressure. For me I'm super happy with their performance these days... we can all measure them by the testnet releases / beta products and clearly they've become a well-oiled machine in terms of development on both L1 / L2 and sure lot of exciting things to come as they launch, mature it, add features. (obviously they have other areas outside of development which I'm guessing have matured too but I don't follow personally). Plus, actually they do manage to answer basically all the dev community questions and there's a lot of interaction going on there as new devs are working on evonet / dapps etc and that's been really important in fostering the dev community growth this past year. But yah I'd say once they have the main pressure off and Evo is on mainnet it would be healthy to open up a bit. For example was really good to watch the stream with Quantum yesterday, lot of technical info / insight actually some stuff I wasn't aware of, and there's lot more devs like Quantum you don't see from the outside. I think their official community interaction needs to be kinda managed though, because too much could easily get counter-productive (like volume of questions, different people wanting certain features or change things or justify things and that can get repetitive and especially devs don't work well when distracted). I think structurally it doesn't help too that DCG is kinda entirely opaque from community perspective... thats natural because of how it was constructed based on corporate structure. We avoided that in the Incubator by starting with full transparency as an experiment which actually is working pretty good, but iIs hard to retrofit that. My own opinion though is we can see that DCG is consistently delivering on the new features since EvoNet launch and the best thing is just support as they complete each step to mainnet which is transparent process in itself and also feature-locked so bothering them with asking them to communicate more right now side or justify their existence is gonna hinder not help what we're all working for. If people want more communication from DCG Im sure that's gonna be more likely after mainnet than before fingers crossed anyway. I know Ryan works flat out and when he has time he's represents us with media, interviews or whatever is needed. Bob has my old job and I can confirm thats not an easy one or one where you have lot of free time to say the least. Im guessing Bob would have more time after mainnet but you'd have to ask him. Dana joined after I left, it would be great if he had more time to interact with the community but again i'm guessing his day is filled up with helping the devs launch. You can say they need to improve on community interaction but you can't say they're not super busy / working flat out thats for sure.

I think there's lots of things that could be improved structurally and with transparency / decision making /scope etc and communications obviously. But the work ethic and dedication going on in DCG is super strong and from technical perspective so is the organization / knowledge / experience they've accumulated, really we couldn't really ask for smarter bunch of people building / delivering Dash at this point. If that's not apparent from the outside right now, once they deliver mainnet and as they work with the dev community to grow the ecosystem and add features on Platform I'm sure it will be.