Celer Network Annual Report 2018 — Part III: Developer Adoption & Ecosystem Building

What makes Celer different? Please read our 2018 Annual Report — Part III: Developer Adoption & Ecosystem Building.

Hi everyone,

As the new year approaches, Celer Network team wishes everyone a wonderful new year! Thank you all for your continued support. Since we first came out of stealth in Q1 2018 with some early supporters, we have seen significant growth in Celer Network’s vision, technology, team and community. We would like to share our 2018 highlights with all of you! Our Annual Report 2018 is composed of four parts:

In the next four days, we will release each part separately. 🙌

About Celer Network:

Celer Network aims to bring Blockchain technology to mass adoption. It is an Internet-scale, trust-free, and privacy-preserving off-chain scaling platform where everyone can quickly build, operate, and use highly scalable decentralized applications. It provides unprecedented performance and flexibility through innovations in off-chain scaling techniques and a crypto economics model designed based on game theory principles to bring essential value to the off-chain ecosystem.

Celer Network is founded by PhDs from MIT, Princeton, UC Berkeley and UIUC and has an all-star engineering team with years of industry experiences from top startups or tech giants like Google, Amazon, Cisco, Oracle, HP and more.

Part III: 1. Community Cultivation and Developer Adoption

We believe that the success of a blockchain ecosystem eventually depends on a strong and global user and developer community. There are several stages to build out a full-fledged community. In the first stage, we focused on the general market education and developer community building.

On the general market education side, we have established a global community of 30,000+ Telegram members, 10,000 Wechat official account followers and 6,300 Twitter followers. This community is not established through paid airdrops or any “free money” marketing campaigns, but through our long-term general education materials posted in Medium, Reddit and many other channels.

Our freely released course to Chinese community

We spent majority of our efforts so far in cultivating a strong developer community. Firstly, we have released a ​full-stack 12-lesson course to each Ethereum Solidity dApp development​. We have around 2,000 students registered and studied the course (including earlier courses we did with SV Insight). This access to the students of this course gave us a significant basis in terms of boosting the developer community. We have also recently released courses for Celer Network application building. With the existing knowledge of our previous course, developers only need to spend another 60mins and can start to immediately develop based on Celer Network SDK.

Secondly, we have been co-organizing the weekly ​State Channel Researchers Calls that gather all the teams in the world studying and working on state channel research and development. The purpose of this call is to have a communication channel between multiple teams so we can discuss and arrive at a community standard on the API surface. We believe community standard is super important for developer adoption as it significantly lowers the risk of “wasted work” for early adopters. We believe it is also important to collaborate in this phase among seemingly competing teams because we believe we need to create a viable market first. This researcher call is also a place to discuss the most cutting-edge advancement of off-chain scaling research and a lot of innovative ideas are exchanged during the calls.

State Channel Researchers Calls

Thirdly, we were invited to several top-notch developer-oriented conferences, workshops and hackathons. We have also been hosting high-quality developer meetups and gathering all over the globe. For example, we were selected from 1000+ submissions to give a talk on Ethereum Devcon 4 about Celer Network. We were invited as a judge for the ETHSF Hackathon: the biggest Ethereum hackathon in the world. We were invited as speaker in CESC, ETHIS, Off-the-chain Master Workshop and many more high-profile conferences. In Prague, we gathered literally all teams in the world working on layer-2 scaling into one room and we discussed the important issues of layer-2 scaling and challenges ahead.

From these high-quality developer events, we have received ​real developer adoption​​. Just during the course of 36 hours in ETHSF, there were 4 awesome teams solving interesting problems using Celer Network: ​off-chain prediction market​, ​micro services with SLA guarantee​, better ​IDE UX for developing on Celer Network​, and ​financial derivative trading market with instant order matching​! We already see the potential of Celer Network’s SDK and are actively collaborating with these developers to turn their hackathon submissions into real products.

Example Projects building on top of Celer: off-chain prediction market, micro services with SLA guarantee, better IDE UX for developing on Celer Network, and financial derivative trading market with instant order matching, Interactive game on Celer.

We have also launched ​cPilot SDK early access program​ and Celer Network Technology Ambassador program. So far, we have more than 100 developer registered for cPilot with real pain points that can be solved using Celer Network.

Part III: 2. Ecosystem Building

Celer Network Ecosystem

To become the “narrow waist” of blockchain ecosystem, we need to collaborate with both user-facing applications and also promising layer-1 blockchains. To this end, we have significantly expanded our ecosystem horizon with concrete and purposeful collaborations on both parts.

On the public blockchain side, we have the following partners and collaborators:

  • L4 Ventures: L4 Venture was founded by “OGs” of Ethereum community and is an independent house of research and investment. We are together pushing forward for a common off-chain scaling standard for the Ethereum ecosystem.
  • DFINITY: We have implemented full smart contract support as the first off-chain scaling solution on DFINITY platform.
  • Nervos: We are collaborating to refined the layered blockchain architecture with a close feedback loop. Through many rounds of technical discussions, we have identified several key cases of cross-layer optimization and interface alignment.
  • Aelf: This collaboration aim to get us a better access to many important enterprise use cases and pain points.
  • Quarkchain: We are piloting a cross-shard off-chain transactions system in Quarkchain’s sharded blockchain architecture.
  • Qtum: We are testing out Qtum’s new x86 virtual machine and comparing that with EVM and other VM architectures for off-chain scaling.
  • NKN: We are using NKN’s data fabric as a possible solution to the general data connectivity challenge faced by off-chain scaling systems and at the same time provide micro payment services on NKN.
  • IoTex: We are still in the beginning phase of collaboration with IoTex, but we believe IoT use cases are natural fit for off-chain transaction systems .

With a strong root in the public blockchain space, we are also in the initial phase of finding application partners. We have established partnership with clearly identified use cases with Atlas Protocol (for micro payment of advertisements), Ankr Network (for micropayment of computational services) and Path Network (for micropayment of monitoring services). We have also started to incubate some of the top developers acquired through hackathon events for exciting applications such as off-chain prediction market and micro payment services.

In addition to “crypto native players”, we are also in active conversation with traditional finance, supply chain and manufacture industry to understand their business and potential pain points that can be solved by blockchain and Celer Network.

Part III: 3. Team Expansion

Without a strong team, all the above progress won’t be possible. During the last 4-months, we have tripled the size of our team to 17 full-time members without a single loss of our existing team members. We currently have a world-class team of 13 engineers to deliver production-grade software, a small but extremely talented product and designer team for real user adoption and an agile team of PR, marketing and BD to cultivate the community and expand Celer’s ecosystem.

Part IV Preview: Reflection on the Blockchain Industry

Blockchain is a nascent technology with pace of development faster than anything else we have seen. We want to take this opportunity to share some of our reflection regarding this industry as a whole. Thanks for reading! Please stay tuned for our next update. Happy New Year!

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