Q&A — Thomas Marchi, co-founder & developer at Sentivate / Arity.
“Hi Thomas; what is your background and for how long have you been involved with software development?”
I began learning code around 8. I remember looking at a tech blog and saying to myself that I wanted to build this site. From there I continued searching, learning, and building. Around 8th grade, I had my first sale for design & code. By high school, I was selling GUI website designs on a more regular basis. In HS I skipped over all the coding classes and got right into what was called independent computer science. Around that time I began working on building social networks and community-focused sites.
After high school, I was introduced to network infrastructure moves by Lewis Haber my first mentor and business partner. Over time I branched out from site work into mobile apps for Android and iOS.
In my late teens, I began work on what is now called AcidJS.com our core front-end utility library and LucyJS a backend utility library that’s used in Sentivate. In 2014 I started Arity as a software company. One of our first products was a social network called LNKit. I created a series of open source utility libraries, automatic documentation generation, and a unit testing library. All of which are used in Sentivate today. I also offered a JS benchmarking service on a subdomain called jsperf.lnkit.com which can be searched on GitHub to demonstrate the extent of our influence in web history. I continued to build a variety of applications from that point.
An app we will be re-releasing exclusively on the Sentivate network is Hermes. Hermes is a social media automation tool that bypasses developer APIs and mimics human-like behavior. I also worked on genetic applications that would analyze a raw DNA file from 23andme, parse the SNPs, and pull up related genetic data to those individual SNPs. This way you could get all health data associated with your genetic data. Throughout my development career, I always designed and built sites of all shapes and sizes regardless of the time period.
During my early 20s, I also helped other developers coming out of boot camp or college to obtain jobs in banks to tech companies. I also spent a short time on and off to teach Nodejs to local young folk eager to learn. Sharing my passion for code & design with others is something I enjoy doing till this day.
The most important and relevant product was an early form of Sentivate. This framework at the time had a different name but we were building it for the purpose of private Government intranets and or retrofitting some portions of it for modern sites. However, we soon came to the realization that the web is broken to an astounding degree. In order to provide the product, we intended on building we needed to redesign the web’s core technologies and introduce a few additions. The trick was all of these components needed to work together to truly create a viable replacement for the web we have today. However, one key component was missing from the web’s point of view. That was effective congestion control and something that could incentivize good behavior.
This is where cryptocurrency came into play. PoWs are a fantastic use case for packet congestion control built right into the protocol known as packets puzzles. After a ton of research and prototyping, I came to the conclusion that a new web must include a cryptocurrency but it should not interfere with or hinder the performance of the web in any way.
The web must keep its centralized bits in order to have any realistic and or viable approach and it must take advantage of decentralized technologies like a P2PCDN. The paired cryptocurrency must be decentralized focused and enhanced by centralized components. We should be using both sides of the coin and using the right tool for the right job.
“Sentivate claims that the world wide web as we know it is sick, what exactly do you mean by that?”
Net Neutrality is a response to resource limitations as our needs are outgrowing our networks. To solve this issue we need modern technology to replace existing components not add to the stack. If we don’t, fast lanes & prioritization of data is our only option. The inevitable rise of IoT, more devices per-person/household, self-driving cars, modern real-time features, high definition streaming, speed demands, & developing countries coming online suck up bandwidth we don’t have.
A decentralized web isn’t a solution.
The global economy depends on a fast web & cheap bandwidth. If a solely decentralized web replaced the modern web it would take up more bandwidth a further congest networks. The term “Web 3.0” is not a magic bullet, a revolutionary idea, or a solution. The issues with the web go far beyond its topology. Decentralized web-based projects aren’t aware of the core issues if their attempt is to replace the web we have today. The Web’s issues are much more technical than just a full core topology switch or running on a blockchain. Both topologies have their use cases but together they’re a solution to an ever growing problem that has gone unchecked. If the web of today was running on blockchain tech we would have serious resource limits, higher costs for clients, require more bandwidth, have limited comparable real-time features, and would drastically slow down the global economy. Resulting in trillions lost in economic activity affecting every single industry we have today.
Outdated core technologies are limiting our network’s capabilities.
The core technologies that we rely on today such as HTTP & DNS were never built with modern needs in mind. HTTP is the vehicle that transports the 1s and 0s that our modern economy is built on. If you slow down the flow of data on the web you are slowing down the flow of capital. Any slowing down to HTTP will result in a slower economy and tremendous amounts of capital loss. DNS & HTTP are inherently broken, have poor scalability, are dreadfully slow, lack modern features, eat up bandwidth, and cost consumers & businesses billions. Replacing just these two core technologies with modern future-proof solutions would elevate a tremendous amount of congestion, improve the economy, and improve user experience.
The Web Lacks Identity & Accountability.
The Web is the Wild Wild West. There needs to be an effective way to keep track of and block bad actors. There also needs to be an effective way to quickly identify good actors. We need to be able to identify attackers, hold bad faith players responsible, and hold rent-seeking large entities accountable. At the same time, good faith actors need to be prioritized & rewarded.
“How is Sentivate going to change this for the better?”
The issues of utmost importance are replacing core outdated technologies. Introducing new systems focused on identity & accountability brings order to the Wild Wild West we call the Web. We must utilize both sides of the same coin, meaning including both topologies in the solution. A revolutionary replacement for today’s web is a system that is centralized focused and enhanced by decentralized components.
In order for the Web to maximize the Internet’s potential, we must go through every single layer that is the web today.
- We designed Sentivate’s web so that it’s faster than the web we have today. There must be no trade-offs. It must be efficacious in every single way in order to truly have a viable & realistic replacement for the modern web.
- That’s why we call it the Universal Web, not the World Wide Web. It’s designed to go beyond the stars and follow wherever humanity leads.
We have created a data transport protocol designed to replace HTTP, WEBRTC, & Websockets called UDSP. UDSP is a UDP based low-latency, real-time, bi-directional, encrypted, and reliable Data Transport Protocol.
We created a far more efficient method for domain information compared to DNS. Sentivate uses what we call the Domain Information System. The Domain Information System, (DIS), is responsible for returning domain-specific information from human-readable hostnames. The DIS encompasses DNS’s functionality and then some on the Sentivate network. There are a few important differences between DIS & DNS. The DIS is encrypted by default via UDSP. The DIS also returns the domain’s certificates which include cryptographic details & routing information.
In order to introduce accountability a public cryptographic ledger, cryptographic certificates, and a signing authority must be available to all. At the same time, it must also be correctable to ensure abuse doesn’t occur. The ultimate failure of justice is when an innocent entity is found guilty. It’s much better that the guilty go free than the innocent persecuted for a crime they never committed.
“Can you tell us something about the SNTVT token and its current use?”
SNTVT is an ERC20 utility token on the Ethereum network. Sentivate tokens are used to gain access to the early stages of the Sentivate Network, development process, & voting. Delegates cast their votes during various phases of development which aids in directing the project. Delegates have early access to browsers, server modules, client modules, Identity certificates, Domain certificates, and various other applications. Delegates with more SNTVT tokens have more voting power and as such have a greater ability to steer the project.
ERC-20 tokens are also an effective way to incentivize early adoption of emerging web-based technologies, not just blockchain specific solutions. It’s a great way to bring new users to the network and for developers to start building applications. This will also bring users straight into VIAT making the initial adoption quick & easy.
“What will be the biggest challenges ahead of disrupting the biggest network in the world?”
It gets down to adoption and use cases. To spur initial adoption we are re-releasing all of our previous applications back on the Sentivate Network only. Apps that fill multiple current holes in the market and have fantastic potential to pull in organic revenue. None the less that is only an aspect of adoption. Providing businesses & governments with use case specific solutions is the other side of the adoption pie.
For example, low bandwidth environments, security-focused networks, dispersed computing, network-based supercomputing, and crypto exchange applications just to name a few. We have plans for those use case specific solutions but depending on the contracts and the details info may not be disclosed.
“When the Sentivate Network launches you’ll be swapping the SNTVT token to VIAT, your native cryptocurrency. What can you tell us about that?”
VIAT is the native cryptocurrency on the Sentivate Network. VIAT has a hybrid blockchain. VIAT’s core systems are decentralized focused but enhanced by decentralized components; the opposite of Sentivate’s Web.
VIAT is designed to be fast, secure, and have some of the lowest transaction fees available. VIAT’s centralized portions can process instant transactions, provide wallet security, and alleviate network congestion when the decentralized network is under heavy load. However, these centralized features are opt-in only allowing users to forge their own path.
VIAT has a dynamic proof of work which can be mined two ways. Direct mining is the main method & the second method is through the use of packet puzzles in UDSP. Packet puzzles allow for passive mining of VIAT while browsing the Universal Web. However, it’s not enabled by default. The situations which arise that enable packet puzzles are: upon connection handshake, connection liveliness check, DDoS protection, congestion control, and or the service chooses to enable it for their own reasons. It is up to the service to enable packet puzzles. This ensures that there is no need for constant mining in the background and gives real purpose to the mining process. Otherwise, it would be on all the time sucking up resources & eating into battery life.
Tied Into the Universal Web
Identity & Domain certificates also double as VIAT wallet keys. This allows users to not only instantly sign into a service during connection handshake but also provide a way to purchase goods from services, tip sites, and or refund clients. VIAT is an integral part of the full functionality of the Universal Web without it only part of the picture is there.
“What can you tell us about your team?”
“Looking at your roadmap, what are you most excited for?”
The browser release is what we believe is the most notable event, we have already completed the alpha browser and it was great to test locally and browse both the Universal WWW. Once we complete the browser release we will already have a lot done in regards to the network itself. We are fast tracked already on the domain system which will be released by end of May. We hope to have a MVP by end of summer.
“How can people stay up-to-date”
I am not a financial advisor who tells people to buy certain assets.
That being said, besides being invested in Sentivate, I am being compensated for my time writing this article.
Thanks for reading,