We are excited to announce the developer portal for DIRT! We started DIRT with a mission to make data openly available and editable. At a time where there are questions around bias, fake news, and questionable data sources, we need a way for communities to edit the data they rely on.
How DIRT works
DIRT allows anyone to deploy a datastore on Ethereum that is openly editable. We call this a Community Moderated Datastore (CMD) because there is no single owner. All the data is community owned and managed, and any service or application can use the data in a CMD.
DIRT protocol helps communities maintain their CMD quality as follows:
- Write data: To write to a CMD, users stake tokens. The required token stake is unique to each datastore and set at the time of creation. As long as the data is saved in the datastore, the tokens are staked with the data. This prevents spam by requiring every writer to have skin in the game.
- Edit data: If someone comes across an error while using DIRT, they can flag the error and earn staked tokens for incorrect data as a bounty. Changes on DIRT are decided by token weighted votes. Any DIRT token holders can vote to accept or reject the proposal. After the vote ends, voters in the majority earn tokens while those in the minority are penalized.
DIRT built on the ideas of a token curated registry (TCR) to create an economy for trusted data. With DIRT, communities can self-organize and build high quality datasets anyone can use.
Building CMDs with DIRT
The wiki-nature of a CMD enables instant and continuous quality control by allowing anyone to participate. There are many ways to use DIRT:
- Secure data on the blockchain — Storing data on-chain provides an additional level of security against scammers and against censorship. For example, if you are running an initial coin offering, create a CMD and record the official contribution address on-chain. Even if your website is hacked, you can prevent your users from being scammed.
- Trust as a service — A differentiator for any service is now trust. Because anyone can verify the data and have an economic incentive to fix bad data, users can trust the data stored in a CMD. For example, if there is a list of exchanges and their reputation scores, exchanges have a high incentive to bribe the curators to have a higher ranking. With a black box methodology, it is hard to know if the data is reliable. A CMD removes the likelihood of single party manipulation by allowing a community of users vested in the data’s accuracy to collectively keep the data up-to-date.
- Create self-maintaining datasets — Maintaining data with a CMD engages your community to keep data evergreen. For example, keeping a list of coins and their white papers is challenging because new coins are launched and new versions are released. Porting this information to a CMD is a better alternative to keeping the data fresh because it allows the users of the data to contribute to its maintenance.
Developers can deploy a CMD and store data on Ethereum network without needing to know solidity or how to deploy a smart contract. Visit the DIRT developer portal to read the full documentation and create a dataset on Ethereum in under five minutes. You can also visit the DIRT faucet to get test tokens and try DIRT on Ropsten.
DIRT is open sourced and we welcome your pull requests!
We’d love to see what you build!