Cardano News Update – Catalyst Special, 1st Feb
Episode by Peter Bui on February 1st, 2024
Project Catalyst Fund 11 Voting Round
- Discussion on the current statistics and numbers coming out of Project Catalyst Fund 11.
- Emphasis on the importance of exploring different funding sources for Cardano projects outside of the ecosystem’s treasury.
Voting Power in Project Catalyst:
- Insights into the distribution of voting power, with top 1.5% of state keys holding a significant majority.
- Challenges faced by proposals in gaining traction and the need for strategic networking.
Darlington from Lido Nation’s Analytics Dashboard:
A look into the analytics dashboard for Project Catalyst, showing the breakdown of ADA in voting wallets.
Proposals for Catalyst Voting Mechanism Reform:
- Discussion on proposals to change voting mechanisms in Project Catalyst, potentially moving to a one wallet, one vote system.
- Consideration of KYC for wallets to ensure fairness in the new voting system.
Catalyst Working Groups and Community Involvement:
Information on Catalyst working groups aimed at improving the ecosystem, including compensation details for workshop organizers.
Interview with Florian on EU Grants:
Discussion on tapping into various grants in the EU for Cardano projects and the formation of an agency to assist in this process.
Interviews with GeniusX, Gimbal Labs, and Waffle Capital:
Talks on funding opportunities in the Hong Kong space and the focus on developer-focused workshops and incubators.
Token Allies Decentralized VC Concept:
Introduction to the decentralized VC model by Token Allies, focusing on Cardano projects.
Minswap’s Voting Process for Catalyst:
Overview of Minswap’s involvement in the voting process for Project Catalyst and how MIN holders can participate.
Get access to all the proposals to vote on.
IOG’s Acquisition of Blockfrost:
Discussion on IOG purchasing Blockfrost and its implications for the Cardano ecosystem, including concerns about centralization.
Cardano Shield for User Protection
Introduction to Cardano Shield’s features like malicious website detection, transaction risk assessment, and integration into wallets and dApps.
Dex Hunter’s Token Buybacks and Treasury Funding
Insight into Dex Hunter’s buyback mechanism and its impact on the Hunt token.
Genius Yield’s Yield Accelerator Program Extension
Information about the extension of the yield accelerator program and its benefits for GENZ token holders.
Mercury Payment Gateway Plugin for WooCommerce
Introduction to version two of the Mercury plugin, enabling ADA and other native asset payments on WooCommerce stores.
Connector Launchpad Hiring Marketing Lead
Job opportunity at Connector for a marketing lead, including job requirements and team insights.
Apply for the job via their blog post.
Another Cardano news update for you guys, this is a look into project catalyst, some numbers and stats are coming out of it at the moment for this fund 11 voting round, as well as looking for different ways that you can get funding for your project that you’re building on Cardano. It’s really important that we start looking at different revenue sources externally from the Cardano ecosystem itself. So we’re not always relying on that treasury that we have to build things in the Cardano ecosystem.
also have a whole bunch of news updates for you guys as well from various projects that are building on Cardano. So let’s get right into it.
If this is your first time here, I’m Peter Bui and I’m a Cardano ambassador as well as ambassador for quite a few other projects in the Cardano ecosystem. Make sure you give me that thumbs up, subscribe, notification bell on your way in, but let’s get into this here. This is my first news story. This is around what’s the smart contract audit team have put out, the data around the voting power in Fund 10. And if we have a look at this here, check this out, 56,341 state keys registered for this Fund 11.
With the top 1.5% of state keys controlling 55% let’s round that up 56% of all the voting power in the Cardano project catalyst. The bottom 49% control only 1.1% of the voting power and the bottom 84% control only 8.4%. Wow, that is incredible. So to really, really
get traction on your callous proposal, you need to be a part of this or know someone that is a part of the 1.5% and has that massive controlling weight in the ecosystem. Otherwise, you’re going to really struggle. I know a lot of people do all these AMAs, Twitter spaces, video interviews and all sorts of things to try and get the proposals out there and get the attention of all the voters. And we do see a lot of people.
supporting these projects I myself have my own proposals and I get a lot of votes on these proposals which is I’m so good and I’m so appreciative of but some of these wallets and whatnot just don’t have the voting power of this 1.5 percent to be able to push it over the line. So I’ve been struggling a little bit and I know a lot of other projects been struggling to get those votes and attention to push their proposals over. Now this all comes down from the data that
brilliant analytics dashboard for Project Catalyst that Darlington from Lido Nation has put together. But we can see here the breakdown of all the ADA in the voting wallets here. You can see the voting range here from 450 to 1000. We’ve got 8618 keys. The main range here you can see is between 1 to 5000 ADA. Just over 19,000 wallets are registered there.
So you can see the total range of voting power, only 1%. So it’s very low for where the majority of people are in the ecosystem. So these people want these various proposals that are being pushed through, they’re voting for them. They’re really trying to get them through, but because of their voting power, the amount of ADA that they have is so low, they struggle to get these proposals through. So what can we do to fix that? And there are a couple of things. There is a proposal itself,
to look at alternative catalyst voting schemes with new crypto protocols by IOG Research, FoTREC, and the catalyst team. So this is one proposal, which is being voted for at the moment, to look at different ways of potentially changing the voting mechanisms and the way things work for Project Catalyst to make it a little bit fairer for votes within the ecosystem. So maybe it will be a one wallet, one vote system.
If we do that, we need to also look at KYC for all these wallets, because otherwise I could spin up a thousand wallets and then just vote that way. So we do need to look at ways of doing this to make it a little bit fairer, more democratized within the Cardano ecosystem. So that is one proposal and one way that we can change things in the future to make things better for Project Catalyst. Now if you want to have a look at the charts itself, you can go to LidoNation.en.gc.
cata links down below in the show notes for you guys. But we can see here the top voted catalyst proposals are all around working on developing and improving project catalysts. We have the catalyst working groups, alternative catalyst voting schemes, ethics codes for catalysts, data-driven catalysts, research guild blockchain governance report, catalyst improvement workshops, catalysts, etc. You get the idea.
All of these proposals here that are getting a lot of tension at the moment and getting a lot of votes are all around Project Catalyst. So if you think that Catalyst doesn’t work right now, if you think it’s broken, if you think it can improve, it can and it will be. With all of these particular proposals being put in place to actually make that happen. So if you’re struggling now, don’t worry. In the future, maybe fund 14, fund 16, we should see a lot of improvements in the voting ecosystem and how Project Catalyst is run.
So I’m pretty excited about that one. Optimistic for the future of Project Catalyst. As a part of this, the Catalyst team have put together Catalyst working groups to help move this forward and get community involvement in this process to make Catalyst a lot better. So I’ll put links down below to this particular article here. But if you’re inclined in running workshops, whether they’re virtually or in-person workshops, this is definitely something that you
to try and prove Project Catalyst. So this intends to create the first iteration of community led data driven analysis that informs and potentially important changes for the scope and future of Project Catalyst funding rounds. So it’s all about getting the people in the room together and discussing these particular topics. I know we have Catalyst Townhalls, we have online chat groups on Telegram and Discord, but getting together and collaborating in a space.
just makes things a lot faster. And then you can submit all this work from these working groups to a final point where it can all be collated and presented for the rest of the community. And that’s exactly what they’re doing here. So all of these working groups will gather all this data, all this information, and they’ll present all this information and communicate it at Rare Evo in Las Vegas later this year in August 15th to 18th.
Now if you want to get involved, you can run your own workshop. They have an application form here. So if you are running meetups in your local area already around Cardano, you can run this work group and try and get the community involved and change how Catalyst is working. They are looking at strategic funding priorities, operating parameters, and project incubation and acceleration within all of these particular working groups. Now, if you’re planning to run one, there is compensation for all this as well.
So for a virtual working group, you have up to $1,000 potentially for a virtual working group with a maximum of $10,000 for an in-person working group as well. You also have $1,000 stipend compensation. I did have to Google that and it’s essentially extra compensation on top of that, whatever you’re asking for to make the event work. So there is some money there to actually make these workshops happen.
cost money, food, refreshments, they all cost money as well. So if you’re inclined, if you’ve done these type of events before, go ahead and look into it, try and form a team. They do want teams and not individuals creating this so that they can gather this type of information from the community and submit it for that rare event. So looking forward to these changes and seeing what comes out of these working groups. I know last year, they had a big push for the governance workshops.
and no one here in Australia managed to get one running. I didn’t know about it to the very last minute, so I couldn’t put in an application, but this one here, I’ve formed a group. I have some people in Sydney that are interested, and I will put this one together, maybe a virtual one here in Queensland, and then a physical one in Sydney with the rest of the team members. So looking forward to these workshops, keep an eye out for them. There may be one running in your local area.
Now I also did an interview recently with Florian talking about different ways of funding and he’s looking at various grants in the EU at the moment and he’s looking at forming an agency that will help Cardano projects in the process of getting these various grants. There’s a lot of this type of funding from governments around the world and being able to tap into this for your Cardano startup I think is really good because it brings in that revenue from a different source other than the Cardano ecosystem.
This is the proposal here, more non dilutive funding for Cardano projects. And that’s the idea of putting in the grant process, going for the grant process and getting some compensation for it, but without giving up equity for your company. So that is really appealing for a lot of people. So if you’re interested in that one, make sure you check out. Make sure you subscribe to the channel so you can get an alert as soon as that interview comes out. I also did an interview with the teams here from GeniusX.
We’ve got Jason from Genius X, Hison from Gimbal Labs, and Yuri from Waffle Capital. And we’re talking about how you could possibly get a lot of funding from people within the Hong Kong space. There’s a lot of money, there’s a lot of millionaires in Hong Kong itself. And we’ll talk about running developer-focused workshops and incubators in the Hong Kong region to try and really push that development and funding.
within Southeast Asia with the focus of Hong Kong. Again, that is being processed and in production right now of time recording this, but you should be able to get to that pretty soon. Links in the show notes down below as soon as it’s out. This is the proposal here, Gimbal Labs Genius X Hong Kong Cardano Developer Series. Check it out if you’re interested in that one as well. If you are a developer and wanting to learn how you could possibly get into the Cardano ecosystem, build something.
this is a really good series of workshops, because then it leads you into the investor sector as well with the VC. So it kind of pushes you through that process and streamlines your entry into VC funding. So really interesting interview there. We also have Token Allies at the moment, and I’ve been working with the Token Allies team to get this decentralized VC idea out there in the ecosystem.
I’ve done some research into this and other ecosystems do have decentralized VCs and Token Allies is probably the first one on the Cardano ecosystem focusing purely on Cardano projects. But the idea is that the community can get into these various projects and create a fund, not just funding the projects, but they’ll get together creating a particular fund based on a challenge that they want to create.
fund that challenge and then find the projects for the particular challenge. So it’s a really cool way of involving the community in that entire process. It’s a nice alternative to Project Catalyst and hopefully they get more attention around it as well. I did do an interview with Alex from the project as well and we did a full preview of their testnet and how that all works. So make sure again you subscribe to the channel.
So you’ll be alerted as soon as that interview session comes out too. Now, Minswap again are doing this voting process for Catalyst. They did this in Fund 10 and it was a really good success. Now, if you are a MIN holder, you can participate in this and try and point the direction of where the Minswap team should be using the ADA that is locked up in the LP to vote in Project Catalyst. So I absolutely love this because it gives all this locked up ADA
some power in the ecosystem and if you’re a min holder you can participate in this. So this is all ready to go right now. You saw there previously in this tweet here the the snapshot dates was on the 30th then on-chain voting starts on the 31st. Today is the 1st of February. So if you’re a min swap holder, you can start voting for that right now. I did have a look at the various proposals that they shortlisted for this process.
There’s quite a few of them. You can get to it through their documentation website, but I’ll put the links down below for you. This is what it looks like here. They have 50 catalyst proposals in this process here. The short list is quite good and quite extensive. So if you have no idea what you wanna vote for, have a look at this list. It’s quite a good list to go through. It covers a lot of things in the Gdana ecosystem in each one of the challenges. So…
I do have a look at this one if you have no idea what to vote for. The fact that a whole bunch of people shortlisted this together is a really good audited list to go through. This story here I thought was quite interesting. And this is IOG buying, I’m pretty sure they’re buying them out, Blockfrost. And Blockfrost is an API, an application programming interface that allows developers to talk to the Cardano blockchain. So instead of having to run your own node,
and then running own database that you can query against the blockchain. You can use that API. They have all that infrastructure for you. And then you can just connect to the API, do a request. You may do only one or two requests a day. And instead of having all that infrastructure being held and costing you thousands of dollars a month, they do it for you. And then you just pay a subscription to the API. So it’s spreading out those costs. It’s a software as a service type of business.
Now they have, IG has purchased that and now is a part of the import output family. So recently you saw NAMI wallet get put into the import output fold and now have block frost being a part of that too. So it’s really good that some of these projects are being put under the import output fold so that they will always have that type of continuous development and a lot of
If you’re ever starting a business, if you’re ever starting a startup, you should always look for an exit strategy and who you’re possibly selling to. So Blockfrost probably or may have always intended to sell to a company such as Input Output to sell to a company such as Input Output. Now, there are some downsides to this. And Fabian, good old Fabian.
pointed this out. So congratulations StakeNuts. StakeNuts owns BlockFrost. However, I have to say that I don’t like the fact that IOG is simply buying up these projects. We are already heavily dependent on IOG and if they buy projects like NAMI and BlockFrost, it won’t help us become more independent. I have to really agree with that. When one company is suddenly
in control of all of Cardano’s infrastructure, most popular wallets and all these other aspects of the Cardano ecosystem as a commercial entity. Where’s the decentralization in that? What happens if IOG is forced to go into liquidation for some unknown reason in the future? I’m thinking worst case scenarios. I really don’t think it will be, but all these other products that sit under IOG will be affected as well.
So it’s really important now for us to start supporting other alternatives as well as supporting these core products that we have. So I absolutely love NAMI Wallet. The way it is right now, I use it on a daily basis for testnet stuff, these demo videos that I do, as well as my NFT trading wallet. That’s what I use. And Blockfrost is my premier number one API that I use for Cardano Press.
the plugin that I built for the community. And that is a heavy reliance on that. And now I’m thinking I have to, I really have to make a focus on decentralizing and moving away from that dependency on Block Frost itself. So we are going to make a conscious effort to now rework CardanoPress to actually work with Maestro and their infrastructure as well. So users have a choice.
So in the future, if something happens to Blockfrost, we can then easily switch over to Maestro. Now, the good thing about Blockfrost is, they did have a previous callous proposal where they would open source everything around Blockfrost. And I’ll put links to it down below so that you guys can look into that as well. But you can run all of the infrastructure that Blockfrost has locally for yourself, either on your own computer at home or in your own cloud environment.
or a fully working infrastructure for your DAP or whatever you’re building. So you don’t have to 100% rely on Blockfrost. You can always run it yourself. Now, I don’t want to diminish this moment for Marik Steaknuts from Blockfrost. It’s quite a momentous occasion for him and his team to get to this point. I know they’ll be continuously working on Blockfrost to improve it alongside IOG with whatever they come up with in the future as well. So.
Congratulations to Marek and the team there for getting this far and getting to the point where IOG has put Block Frost under the fold. Alright, let’s get into some other news items for this episode. We have Cardano Shield here. Cardano Shield is a really cool product and I really hope we see more wallets and dApps pick up Cardano Shield and start using their code, their APIs.
to be able to protect users within the Cardano ecosystem. So they have a way, they have a malicious website detection using machine learning, built-in blacklists and whitelists for tokens and domains and stake addresses, transaction drain check and transaction risk assessment. So all of these features that they’ve put into a Cardano Shield can be integrated into wallets. So this can all be integrated into Nami Wallet, can be integrated into Typhoon, Eternal.
could be integrated into dApps that you’re using as well. Whatever it is, you can have that data be fed into your application, your wallet, so that you know when you’re interacting with something, if it’s a scam website, but you don’t know, and you’re suddenly building a transaction and potentially sending something somewhere, it will pop up. It’ll say, hey, you’re sending to a blacklisted address here. This domain name that you’re on is a blacklisted.
blacklisted potentially harmful for what you’re doing at the moment so move away, go away, don’t be here. This type of protection for the Cardano ecosystem is really cool and really important I think so congratulations Cardano Shield for continuously developing this. This was a Catalyst Fund 10 proposal in conjunction with Jero Wallet so if you want to see this in action you can actually download Jero Wallet if you’re not already using it and see all of this.
this happen in real time. So you can find a scam site if you want and try and interact with it and it will alert you and tell you, hang on, there’s a risky transaction happening here, don’t do it. So now this one here is a heart for me and this is around the Hunt Token. The Dex Hunter team are implementing today on the 1st of February, token buybacks and treasury funding. So these fees are going through the Dex Hunter platform will be used to buy
hunt tokens, creating a buy pressure and also some of it going to its own treasury for further development. So this is really, really cool. A lot of these protocols do have these buyback mechanisms and you do see usually do see stabilization in prices or spikes in the actual price of the token itself. MintSwap has this when they use their fee switch, I think it’s called
and they buy back some of the min tokens and put it into the treasury itself locking away some of that supply. So this is a really cool mechanism that the Dex Hunter team are implementing today. So we’ll wait and see what happens but I do have DCAs with Dex Hunter at the moment with the Hunt token so I’m quite bullish with that one and I’d like to see where it goes.
Genius Yield are extending this Yield Accelerator program that they’re doing at the moment. So this is rewarding users with extra GENZ tokens for trading and interacting with their DEX at the moment. So there’s been a lot of activity on the DEX which is really cool. We’re seeing more MMBs, Market Maker bots be implemented with various different tokens as well as SORs or Smart Order Router bots.
being implemented as well. So we’re seeing more and more people spin up decentralized infrastructure for genius yield and also more people trading on the platform too. I think this nice incentive program, this accelerated yield program is a really good way of doing it. So we have extended the competition will end on February 26. So we have the whole month of February to go another 25 days, 26 days for this.
a particular campaign. So if you haven’t participated in this yet, if you haven’t experienced what genius you would have with their order book decks, check it out. It’s a brand new deck, it’s gaining traction and I’m pretty excited about this one and this campaign. So all the links down below for you guys. Now for those that have followed me for a while, you know that I love WordPress. WordPress, the content management system that is used to build so many websites. You know, I’m this much of a fan. I have my own plushie Wapoo.
So yeah, this here what Adam has built is version two of Mercury and Mercury is a payment gateway plugin where you can accept ADA as payment on your WooCommerce store. Now he’s been working on improving this and now you can accept any native asset on the plugin. So this takes it to a whole new level. So if you are selling merchandise on your WooCommerce store, but you only want to accept
You can now, you can sell your merch for HOSKI tokens. So you can sell a Cardano cap or whatever you’ve got, which normally would cost 40 US dollars for 150 million HOSKI tokens instead. So you can do that with this Mercury plugin. It’s all on GitHub at the moment, so I will have to do a tutorial for you guys so you can learn how to actually install this particular plugin. It’s a little bit different. If you’re familiar with the
WordPress ecosystem, you usually just search for a plugin and hey presto, there you go. Not quite the same with this one yet because it’s not listed on the plugin directory, but Adam said he will get to that point eventually once everything’s polished so that you can easily install the plugin and get things going. I’ll probably do some more video tutorials around this one so anyone that’s interested can get into building WordPress powered Cardano websites and you know, I love that stuff.
Hence I built Cardano Press. Anyway, links down below if you’re interested. Connector is a launchpad on Cardano, and at the moment, they’re hiring. They’re in hiring mode. They’re looking for a marketing lead to join the project. So if anyone out there has marketing skills that has been working in this space for quite a while, has experience in creating content, videos, doing interviews, or organizing interviews, AMAs, creating artwork, and all of that, this is definitely for you.
They have a full spec here of the job spec, everything that you need to do, activities, knowledge and skills that you may require and the actual requirements like a degree, X amount of years of marketing, blah blah blah. So if you’re interested in this, if you do ever want to work in the Web3 space, Coinecta is definitely a really good team. They have those connections between Ergo and Cardano as well.
It’s a really good team to join if you’re interested in working web3 space and you’d like ergo and you like Cardano as well Now once again, I’d like to thank all the channel members that are paying to support everything I do in the could Learn Cardano ecosystem You guys absolutely rock the one two three four five six seven eight of you that are paying a monthly subscription to get early access to all the content that I put out and Some of these new things that I’m coming up with to really reward you guys for helping
keep the channel and everything that I do going. So if you want to be a channel member, links down below in the show notes for you as well. You can always just buy me a coffee once a month, it’s really appreciated. I am absolutely addicted to this stuff. Anyway, that is all I have for you guys for this particular news update. Like I said, I have a lot of interviews coming up around funding and different ways of getting revenue within the Kedana ecosystem. So make sure you
click the notification bell there as well, and you get an alert as soon as those interviews come through. Until then, I’ll see you in the next video. Yeah, yeah, gotta do it like that. You’ve been listening to the Learn Cardano Podcast.