Holo and Holochain ecosystem — org-wide progress

Holo’s Org-Wide Progress in 2018

David Atkinson
Dec 4, 2018 · 6 min read

David Atkinson: Holo & Holochain Chief Commercial Officer.

It’s been a long time since my last organisation update, which was halfway through the ICO. The closing of the ICO, our first organisation retreat, and especially getting onto the business of building and growing took over. And here we are close to December.

The highlights of 2018 have been:

  1. Shifting the organisation from fundraising to establishing, to building
  2. Growing our community
  3. Seeing the first apps built before we are even ready
  4. Results, results, results
  5. Sensing the magnitude of the possibility

FYI we are hosting a 2018 year in review AMA on Wednesday, December 5th at 7pm UTC (2pm EST) featuring Art Brock, Mary Camacho, and Matthew Schutte. You can watch it here on YouTube.

In 2017 we were in volunteer mode, moving to fundraising mode. When we raised the ICO funds we shifted focus and structure. We now organise ourselves into five domains:

  • Product dev — where we build Holochain, Holo, and core applications
  • Operations — where we manage finance, technical services, infrastructure, and our people
  • Delivery — where we run our meetup, hackathon, dev community building, and generally engage developers around the world to build on Holochain
  • Growth — where we support keynotes, communications, PR, support application builders, network, and connect to build a paradigm-shifting, community-led application ecosystem
  • Organisation enablement — leadership, executive functions, strategy, and treasury to support a thriving organisation

The intention behind our structure is to facilitate communication between these domains and to ensure we are community-led and service oriented in all that we do. Leadership is designed to be in support of the needs of the organisation and community, not dominate it. To support growth and good communications we: operate a co-hearance structure (each domain has two leads not just one, who co-hear the needs of the domain); run regular fireside chats; and are building change integration processes. We’re trying hard to support the individuals in our organization so we can continue serving our community over the long haul.

The shift from fundraising to building and delivering has taken time and in different ways than we expected. But each month we get clearer on our larger communities’ needs, the Holo team’s needs, and how each of our own accountabilities must meet those needs. We have experts in many areas now and the beginnings of a super-powerful team.

If Holochain, Holo and the world of apps built on top of it is going to power the new internet, we need to be set up to support on all fronts. That has been a major focus and we believe we are entering 2019 in superb shape.

Growing our community

Community is at the heart of the origin of Holochain. We all started as volunteers. Some as hackers, some as evangelists, some passionate about the distributed web. We share humble and proud roots with 2,000 founding Holonauts who raised over a million dollars in our Indiegogo campaign. Our first large ICO investors share a similar ethos and passion and helped HOT capture the imagination of the crypto world with our grassroots support.

For a while we neglected our Telegram community in favour of Mattermost (our discussion board) and other channels, but it has quickly grown since April to an impressive and powerful volunteer team who now support 20+ Telegram channels with over 11,000 members (in our main channel alone) and counting. This community is helping drive app design, marketing, and fundraising initiatives.

Some members of the community have become members of the Holo team, some work for Holochain projects, and some recommend projects build on Holochain. We try and ensure everyone we play with is recognised and rewarded in a way that works for them.

Our community answers technical questions, solve challenges in our design, and makes connections.

So much more is needed from us to support the community in 2019, but we are putting the right building blocks in place.

We bow deeply in gratitude to everybody who is part of the journey today — and to the many more coming in the future.

Seeing the first apps built before we are even ready

Imagine our delight when Humm launched a publishing app, running on Holochain, hosted on the web, months before Holo has even been released! Holochain is capturing the imagination of builders, and builders are building as fast as the core team.

Then there is the team at EYSS in Venezuela building a podcast server called the Beacon, and the team at MetaEvents building a disaster relief application, and the team at Sacred Capital building a reputation interchange, and the team at Buildsoft creating a building application.

We are in talks with energy grid groups, crowdfund platforms, donor platforms, and communication app builders.

We see Holochain solving the social coordination and communication needs of the new world as well as being an ideal accounting and value transfer platform. We believe that we are a great partner for the protocols of today, and working together is important for us in 2019. There are opportunities with the world’s biggest donors, development institutions and enterprises in the worlds of supply chain, medicine, accounting and anything else that requires social coordination, communication, accounting, or value transfer.

Results, results, results

We hoped to be further ahead in our community promises, but the tools of the new world aren’t breathed into existence, they have to be built. We set ambitious goals for an ambitious project and we’re setting up to meet them. We will continue posting regular updates on Holochain builds, Holo builds, and HoloPort shipping times to our community on all channels including our website.

Some of our 2018 results:

  • We refactored Holochain into Rust for a number of reasons to make developing and adoption much easier
  • We have designed the Holo fuel currency and begun simulations for the world’s first asset-backed, dynamic supply, mutual credit currency
  • We are consistently in top 10 for git activity amongst ERC20 developers according to Santiment
  • We have a team with 20+ developers building full-time
  • We have the first Rust refactor (dev preview release out) and second coming this week
  • We have HoloPorts fully prototyped and earning final certifications in order to ship
  • We have Holo incorporated in Gibraltar with a local team, banking, and finance set up, and are moving forward with a DLT license
  • We have run 21 hackathons in 11 countries with 400+ participants
  • We have run 50 meetups in 17 countries with 600 participants
  • We have delivered 2 dev camps
  • We have many external developers actively building solutions on Holochain
  • We have 1 app live, >20 in development and 15 on our Holochain GitHub

We decided in 2018 not to focus on signing partnerships but instead spend that energy on tech, relationships, learning, listening, and growing infrastructure. We believe 2019, especially after the launch of the Holo main net, will be the year for organisation to build on Holochain. We cannot wait.

Sensing the magnitude of the possibility

The idea of building a new internet is daunting. But that was our intention when we coalesced as a community, and continues to be our intention as we help catalyze an ecosystem. Holo the organisation is focused on making this happen.

What will our world look like this time in 2019? How many people will be running HoloPorts? How many apps will be running Holochain? What will our first “mother app” be? How will people be re-imagining: supply chains, investing, identity, machine-to-machine communications, rewarding people, reputation systems, chat applications, or collaboration tools?

Let’s stand together briefly and imagine this world — before we get back to building it.


Post-blockchain technology, value-stable cryptocurrency, and peer-to-peer hosting of scalable, distributed apps. Now is the time for popular access to an equitable, decentralized web! https://holo.host

David Atkinson

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Post-blockchain technology, value-stable cryptocurrency, and peer-to-peer hosting of scalable, distributed apps. Now is the time for popular access to an equitable, decentralized web! https://holo.host

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