Zilliqa — Telegram QUIZ & AMA — April 8
On Wednesday, April 8, we had the pleasure to welcome to our Telegram chat:
Amrit, President, and CSO of Zilliqa
Colin JG Miles, Head of Marketing of Zilliqa
Aparna Narayanan, Communications Manager of Zilliqa
Milan Shoukri, Marketing Manager of Zilliqa
Some sentences have been slightly edited for readability but the meaning has been conserved.
In this AMA, Amrit, Aparna Narayanan, Colin JG Miles and Milan Shoukri from Zilliqa joined the GAINS community to tell us about their project.
The core value proposition of Zilliqa is scalability achieved thanks to sharding, a “divide and conquer” technique, thus balancing the golden trilemma of security, decentralization and scalability, giving Zilliqa its competitive edge in the industry. Aditionally, they created a programming language called Scilla which is secure by-design and formally verifiable.
Moreover, Zilliqa uses a modified PoW consensus, less costly for miners and more eco-friendly.
With XSGD, the stable coin on their blockchain, they target the remittance market of the APAC region, projected to be worth $270 billion in 2026.
Finally, they underlined the vast ecosystem built around Zilliqa and the vibrant and democratic community they foster. Indeed, 60 projects from 20 countries are part of the Zilliqa ecosystem. They are building wallets, DApps, explorers, developers toolkits, smart contract testing frameworks and more.
Q — Alexandre R from GAINS: Can you tell us what you did before crypto, how you got into crypto and if you’ve had any other venture in crypto previous to being involved with Zilliqa?
A — Amrit from Zilliqa: I come from an academic background. Prior to Zilliqa, I was a postdoctoral researcher at the National University of Singapore (NUS) where I was doing research on privacy in blockchains. Prior to that, I did a Ph.D. on Security and Privacy of software systems. I got interested in Blockchain from a research perspective, trying to identify the research problems in the space and solve them. Zilliqa started off as a research project on scaling blockchains in the lab at the NUS.
Q — Alexandre R from GAINS: Can you tell us what your role is at Zilliqa and what the project is about in a few simple sentences?
A — Amrit from Zilliqa: I am a co-founder at Zilliqa. I am currently leading the team as the President and Chief Scientific Officer. Zilliqa is a blockchain platform that tries to solve:
1) Existing scalability issues of blockchains. Legacy chains such as Bitcoin and Ethereum as we well know now can only process around 5–10 transactions per second. Zilliqa aims to solve this.
2) Design a safe smart contract language that can reduce the risks of losing crypto assets. For example, incidents like DAO and Parity hacks where attackers were able to steal or freeze millions of dollars worth of ETH.
Q — Twitter user @NekoNekoNii77: In the current cryptocurrency ecosystem, what do you think makes Zilliqa stand out from the rest of the pack?
A — Aparna Narayanan From Zilliqa: Yes, it’s true that the blockchain industry has a LOT of players who are bringing in their own expertise and solutions into the industry. Zilliqa stands out from the rest because of its technology. It has successfully implemented an effective solution to combat one of the pressing issues in the industry — that of scalability. In time, this has become one of our core value propositions.
1- The platform is based on an on-chain solution called sharding, which is a “divide and conquer” technique where nodes and transactions are allocated into groups and processed in parallel. This ensures that the network is not prone to additional security vulnerabilities and maintains its decentralized state. In 2019, Zilliqa became the first public blockchain platform to be built on sharded architecture. This technique helps Zilliqa balance the golden trilemma of security, decentralization and scalability which forms the core principles of blockchain. Other projects have found it extremely challenging to achieve this balance. This is part of what gives Zilliqa its competitive edge in the industry.
2- We use a modified version of the Proof-of-Work (PoW) consensus protocol to ensure decentralization without making it too costly for miners. We have a more eco-friendly, cost-effective model of mining
3 — Zilliqa has its own smart contract programming language called Scilla, which is secure-by-design and formally verifiable. Scilla was created not only with security in mind but also so that developers could easily write and express the conditions of contracts conveniently while being assured that their smart contracts are not prone to bugs and coding input errors.
These are some key attributes that make Zilliqa special. Of course there is so much more detail to it! Check out this interview by Amrit which explains our USP in detail or our “Platform” and “Language” section on zilliqa.com
Q — Twitter user @btc4life76: Most of the DEX platforms are not easy to use and require a high level of technical know-how. How will Zilliqa DEX make DEX platforms become user friendly and easy to use for traders?
A — Amrit from Zilliqa: DEXes have evolved a lot since the EtherDelta days when we had poor UX, complex on-chain order matching, etc. Newer DEXes such as KyberNetwork, Uniswap, and others, have dramatically changed the UX. There are metrics, particularly DEX volume, that clearly demonstrate that. Volume on DEXes has been increasing rapidly in the last 6 months. Switcheo is a new generation Uniswap-like DEX that uses an atomic swap protocol, enabling traders to undertake automatic digital asset exchanges without the need for centralized intermediaries. Switcheo’s features are generally quite user friendly and we are confident they will do the same for Zilliqa so that users can access all features conveniently.
A — Amrit from Zilliqa: We explain the difference between Scilla and Solidity in great depth in these slides. As far as Scilla vs Mainstream languages is concerned, Scilla is similar to Solidity in the sense that they are both domain-specific, while languages such as JS, C/C++ are more general purpose.
Q — Telegram user |Razz 💬: What is the security and transparency of Zilliqa smart contract compared to traditional contract? What attracts customers and investors to Zilliqa in the long term?
A — Amrit from Zilliqa: Smart contracts written in Scilla are resistant to several known attacks that we have seen in Ethereum contracts. For example, Scilla can prevent DAO-like incidents. Zilliqa provides a fully-functioning mainnet based on sharding along with some anchor DApps being run/developed on the chain to drive use cases for example, Unstoppable domains, XSGD, a Security token exchange named HGX among others.
Q — Telegram user Dreaming Boy: There have been recent hacks on VeChain, IOTA, and Steem. How do you provide better and good security to the project, and how can $ZIL protect its users from hackers?
A — Aparna Narayanan From Zilliqa: Security is critical for us. Not only is it embedded in every part of our platform architecture and within Scilla’s design, but we also take additional measures to ensure our platform is secure for use. We recently shared a case study of our work with BugCrowd on this very subject.
The addition of this Bug Bounty crowdsourced security program complements our pre-existing measures such as internal review processes, testnet code deployments, and professional third-party auditing firms to ensure that our network is safe, secure, and bug-free.
We also work with Elliptic whose software provides necessary assurances that all activities conducted on our network are compliant with KYC and AML frameworks. Have you seen this CoinDesk article?
Q — Telegram user ems SES: What is the difference in computing power with CPU mining and GPU mining with the current algorithm? Is there an arithmetic calculator for estimating the amount of money mined?
A — Amrit from Zilliqa: CPU mining was possible in the early days of Zilliqa but now, the hash rate requirement cannot be met by a CPU. But, you can still join mining pools. Yes, more details on mining can be found here.
Q — Telegram user AlexOcoOTC: Zilliqa is using a pBFT(Practical Byzantine Fault Tolerance) consensus protocol which can withstand up to 1/3 of the nodes being byzantine (malicious/destructive/non-responding).With the assumption of only 1/4 byzantine nodes, isn’t the network security seriously (and dangerously) stunted vs. other blockchain protocols?
A — Amrit from Zilliqa: The strength of pBFT is that it can tolerate byzantine nodes which are not possible for staking-backed consensus (that does not rely on BFT). If you compare with PoW, there are possible attacks in a PoW network that works even when 33% of the hash power is in the control of a selfish miner. So, the fact that BFT can only tolerate 1/3 of malicious nodes is not really a limitation compared to other protocols.
Q — Twitter user @dani_unss: Why do you believe Zilliqa powered stable coin XSGD is better than any other stable coins in existence and what can it do to improve global commerce in South East Asia and particularly Singapore where we’ve seen huge investment in FinTech recently?
A — Amrit from Zilliqa: I look at XSGD from a different angle. To a very large extent, probably the only use of USD backed stable coins right now is in trading.
Additionally, very few of them are regulated, including Tether which does not serve US customers (if I am not wrong). It is kind of weird that the most popular USD stable coin does not serve US customers. Anyway, I believe that unregulated stable coins will face issues being adopted beyond trading usage as regulators would like to know when a token is redeemed for fiat.
Since transfers are licensed to operate as a Widely Accepted Stored Value Facility, this solves the problem. It also opens up other use cases particularly in the region beyond trading, for example, remittance. XIDR (when it gets launched) can help create that bridge between Singapore and Indonesia.
Remittance is a huge market even if you only consider the APAC and ASEAN region. The total market number for remittance in APAC by 2026 is projected to be $270 billion. The region is still over 60% underbanked and unbanked. If the right tools are provided to the people in this region, you should be able to make XSGD more useful in day to day economy than USD-backed stable coins. The “regionalness” of XSGD will be a factor at play here.
Q — Telegram user Blue Sea: Some tokens do not serve the project to which they are linked. In this sense, how will the Zilliqa token gain people’s trust? What is the function of the $ZIL in the Zilliqa ecosystem?
A — Aparna Narayanan From Zilliqa: The native $ZIL token can be used for the various DApps in the ZIL ecosystem, or as gas fees. $ZIL is not a security, rather a utility token with similarities to money in a nascent digital “economy”. The pricing power of $ZIL against fiat currency comes from Utility and Scarcity. The community can play a role by suggesting innovations that help drive its utility so that we are on the way to making it a form of payment for Goods & Services down the line, and help towards mainstream adoption.
Q — Telegram user Sparker: As I enter the community, I’ve seen that members are losing interest and confidence in the project. What are your goals and plan to increase the confidence level of your investors?
A — Milan Shoukri From Zilliqa: Actually based on the recent data we see we are trending heavily on Social Media and many people are getting more and more excited and confident :)
Here a few examples of things we’ve done in the last weeks:
• Our interview with Crypto Rand.
• Ivan on Tech interview. Over 300 people took part in the quiz
• Our partnership with Transak giving Indian and UK people direct fiat access to $ZIL.
• LunarCrush announcing us Coin of the Day.
• David Pakman talking about Zilliqa.
• 32000% increase in visitors on our new website.
• Over 30 applicants and having multiple projects running on Zillacracy.
• Some statistics of our recent progress.
This is, however, just the beginning and we hope you keep supporting and following us!
Q — Telegram user Cardo Dalisay: What are your strategies in building a big and strong community?
Do you agree that the power of the community will lead your project to grow globally?
A — Milan Shoukri From Zilliqa: Very nice question. I do encourage you, and others, to join our community and get to know us a bit better. We take the community and their opinions very seriously. You can ask the community members even.
What do we do differently? Here a few examples:
1. We allow community members to take part in the development of our progress. For example, through www.zillacracy.com EVERYONE can help and earn $ZIL for their work.
2. We take the opinions into consideration for the development of our platform. For example, our Zilliqa Improvement Plan allows us to give feedback on our new staking service.
Everyone should check it out.
Here you can provide feedback.
3. We have a lot of discussions almost daily on our channel. We love having fruitful conversations.
4. We are developing tools (e.g. tipping bot, and social rewards) to reward community members, which will be launched soon.
Q — Telegram user Raghav: How does the Zilliqa project promote cooperation & collaborative development within the community. If anyone has an idea which works well on ZIL, then, how can we get support?
Q — Telegram user Asil Kurt: What Zilliqa projects are you outsourcing with the Global Blockchain PR team? Can you share which agency you are partnered with?
A — Aparna Narayanan From Zilliqa: We work with a top global PR agency focused on crypto and blockchain. We don’t outsource projects to them — rather we work closely with them on a day-to-day basis on all fronts: messaging, events, positioning, content creation, thought leadership, announcements and media outreach efforts. Glad to say that we’ve achieved quite a lot on that front.
- Just in March, the coverage we’ve had is tremendous.
- Switcheo DEX announcement alone garnered over 80 hits.
Q — Telegram user Tomas Shelby: You have granted awards to many successful crypto projects, but in return, what have they contributed to the ZIL ecosystem and what benefits did ZIL have from them?
A — Amrit from Zilliqa: We were lucky to identify several key ecosystem partners. Each one of them has contributed tremendously to the ecosystem by developing wallets (such as Zilpay, Moonlet, Zillet), explorers (Viewblock), DApps (such as Unstoppable Domains, Krypton, OceanRumble, XSGD, etc), developer toolkits (that includes SDKs, Multisig Wallets) and fiat on-ramp solutions (Xanpool, Transak). Not to mention the network effect that these parties and projects have created.
Q — Telegram user Mustafa: Why haven’t you hired more developers already? When will you hire more developers, and how many are you trying to attract?
A — Aparna Narayanan From Zilliqa: We have hired a developer evangelist to help source and support talented devs from across the world to Build on ZIL. So far, we have supported over 60 projects from 20 countries as part of the Zilliqa ecosystem who are building a variety of things on Zilliqa including wallets, DApps, explorers, developers toolkits, smart contract testing frameworks and more. We also have a grant, accelerator and education arm called ZILHive which looks to constantly attract the best and bourgeoning in the industry. We do dev workshops and tutorials too. The latest one was done with Ivan on Tech. In fact- check it out.
Q — Telegram user Pop_Corn: What are your biggest goals for 2020? Do you plan to expand your Brand and Marketing Department at Zilliqa?
A — Colin Miles From Zilliqa: I think the current focus is definitely Staking. There will be a general update on that soon. Next is expanding the use and adoption of stable coins. The StraitsX project is really gaining traction and there will be several more ways to onboard users. Hg Exchange is ongoing and will be launched at the right time in terms of market recovery. The Marketing team is now at a good number with 5 people. And the momentum has been growing in Social and Crypto Media especially. Project delivery is really important right now.
Q — Telegram user Cross Bianca: Please tell us how will Zilliqa build a developer community that is as strong as Ethereum’s? What about the progress of that.
A — Milan Shoukri From Zilliqa: We are actively working on expanding our developer community and also working together with our community for marketing campaigns (that are also targeted towards developers).
Even you can take part in this here. It is a community-led initiative, governed by a community council, to help the Zilliqa ecosystem grow and reward community members with $ZIL. We have developers and non-developers joining taking part in projects to grow out of the ecosystem.
We have also recently hired these developers to help us to accelerate things even further, and are planning many things together that will be announced soon. Also, our collaboration with Ivan on Tech is out. You can check it out if you want to learn to code. There are also ZILHive education and websites in the works that we are working on. So there are many things planned.
Q — Telegram user Conan: What are your major goals to achieve in the next 3–4 years? What are your plans to expand and gain more adoption? How does Zilliqa elevate crypto participants’ understanding of the project?
A — Colin Miles From Zilliqa: I have mentioned a few of those earlier, but it is imperative that we grow awareness and usage in the marketplace as well as build the developer community. In particular, we have been heavily promoting video-based learning about the project and leveraging major influencers like Ivan on Tech to promote the Scilla language. We also have the LearnBlockchain program ongoing, wherein a larger portal for the education of the general public will be launched to drive interest and understanding. We also have a keen interest in incentivization and social rewards systems — and this will become very important, very soon.
We also worked with David Pakman to help educate folks about Zilliqa.
Q — Telegram user Crypto: What keeps you moving forward? If we talk about specific tasks and goals, what do you want to achieve as a result?
A — Amrit from Zilliqa: We have a version of the mainnet up and running with sharding as the core tech. We are slowly moving towards what can be dubbed as Zilliqa 2.0. This new version will have several optimizations with the goal to increase the throughput numbers, reduce the latency and add features such as privacy. One concrete example of a project that we have been working on is staking that will allow certain components of the network to be run as a staking node. We are also working on moving from an interpreter to a compiler to speed up the time to process each smart contract transaction.
Q — Telegram user nle: How can Zilliqa play an important role in Web 3.0 and Industry 4.0 revolution?
Why doesn’t Zilliqa have other telegram channels for different languages as this could help to spread the words about the project?
A — Aparna Narayanan From Zilliqa: We need to help people upskill so that we are all better prepared for Web 3.0 and Industry 4.0 — this is a priority for us. That is why we’re having more dev workshops/tutorials on our agenda — helping enthusiasts and innovators learn to code on Scilla and work with smart contracts so they can create a new generation of applications with that knowledge. Last year, we worked with KCL and Oxford University via our Education arm — ZILHive education. Now, we’re making it more virtual, accessible and scaling our efforts on that front (Check our latest Ivan on Tech video on Youtube!).
On your second question, there are various TG groups for our global community, however, these are not “official” groups run by us- but are managed by community members themselves. Here are some of them: Russian language community
Dutch language community
Spanish language community
Chinese language community
Korean language community
We do agree that making sure our message transcends language barriers is critical. We are working on that now. We hope to also have some basic translations of our key website content for our community members.
Q — Telegram user KaiOKen: what are the ways that Zilliqa generates profits/revenue to maintain your project and what is its revenue model? How can it benefit both investors and your project?
A — Amrit from Zilliqa: We have been exploring different ways to generate revenue. Some of these revenue streams include investment in key ecosystem projects for capital gains, revenue share with strategic collaborators on joint ventures and consultancy to the government or other industries and research grants which are trying to explore blockchain usage.
Q — Telegram user S.P.A.D.E: What company do you look at for Branding and Marketing inspiration? What is your favorite ad or ad campaign of all time?
Could you elaborate on your vision of the kind of real-world problems and businesses that you’d like to target?
A — Colin Miles From Zilliqa: 1. Both my children are eSports Gamers and I like the RoG livery and corporate identity videos from ASUS that support it. 2. We are targeting (still) the levels of friction in the transactional marketplace that FinTech providers find hard to solve. The Zilliqa technology has ‘moved the TPS dial’ to a place where blockchains can operate seamlessly in the real world. For payments, backend settlements and peer-to-peer incentivized business models. Even more important, as people need to generate new sources of income for themselves, from home.
Q — Telegram user AlaDa: Do you see non-fungible assets being placed on the Zilliqa blockchain en masse as scaling is achieved? Do you think smart contracts like this should have an expiration time based on the “right to be forgotten” philosophy?
A — Amrit from Zilliqa: Mintable App is one of our grant awardees that is developing an NFT marketplace. They have so far minted around 6000 NFTs through their platform on ETH and are working on developing a similar infrastructure for Zilliqa.
Q — Telegram user Gutierrez04: Tell us a bit about the proposals for improvement of ZIP-3, how do you plan to further decentralize your seed node infrastructure? What additional benefits would it bring to this Blockchain? Do you have the trained staff of developers and spacers necessary for this?
A — Amrit from Zilliqa: ZIP-3 in its current form gives a non-custodial, with admin way to stake for seed node operators who have enough collateral. However, it has a custodial flavor to it for end-users. We have already started to work on Phase 2 of Seed node staking to allow non-custodial delegated staking to reduce the risk for end-users and hence decentralizing this ancillary of seed node even further. Based on the success of this phase, we would also like to see if we can increase the number of seed nodes from 10 to say 20 or even more.
Q — Telegram user KNGDM: What are your plans in terms of marketing? I’m aware that you want to avoid any shilling or any unethical marketing tactics. However, everything has seemed pretty quiet so far. Will the marketing ramp-up after mainnet?
A — Milan Shoukri From Zilliqa: Quiet? I mentioned in my response to Telegram user Sparker many examples of things we’ve done in the last weeks.
Please check out our Twitter or Telegram channel for more. To get a better idea of the full list of interviews, podcasts, events, etc. Also, our main net has been running for a while now since January 2019.
Amrit, Aparna, Colin and Milan, thanks a lot for coming in today! It was a pleasure to learn more about Zilliqa.
I can only commend you for wanting to build a stronger developer community and educating people by partnering with influencers and renowned schools. I’m sure this will ramp up and blossom into something with great momentum that brings a lot of real-world applications, at which point the scalability and security by design of Zilliqa will come in handy!
I wish you all the best, keep on working hard and don’t hesitate to update us on Zilliqa’s progress!
Everyone who wants to learn more can head to the Zilliqa Telegram chat — Alexandre R from GAINS
Thank you for having us! — Milan Shoukri From Zilliqa
Thanks for inviting us to the platform! We’ve loved meeting the community here. Guys — I’m sure you have more questions, please head over to our group, we’ve got great CMs and team members who will help you out. — Aparna Narayanan From Zilliqa
Thank you very much folks! — Amrit from Zilliqa
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