XY/XYO/COIN 2021 Q2 Update
Early 2021 has kept the company quite busy, so it has been a while since I’ve sent out a company update. This one, in particular, will be long — but also full of some of the most exciting announcements we’ve had in the last year.
So grab a cup of coffee, hunker down, and bear with me.
It is worth it.
Our Company’s (Final) Name Change
We’ll start with average, and end with the extremely fun stuff (in my opinion).
We have changed our company name, hopefully for the last time. It is a minor change, but we feel it is worth doing.
If you’ve known XY for a few years, you’ve seen big changes in our company, but also seen a few versions of our name. At this point, “XY — The Persistent Company” is a mouthful. Although it does describe our mentality well (we certainly are persistent), it’s proven to be problematic for people to find and looks strange in the App and Play Stores in my opinion.
So what is our new name? It’s a simple one: XY Labs.
Or, more specifically, XY Labs, Inc.
Our website can now be found at xylabs.com and it will also stay at xy.company until most of the public links are migrated.
If you’re an Investor in the company through our Regulation A+ Offering, you don’t need to actively change anything. You may, however, want to let others know you’re invested in XY Labs instead of XY — The Persistent Company!
As far as the mission and day-to-day of the company is concerned, nothing changes.
We are still completely focused on data gathering and validation technologies, and we continue to develop and invent the tools, apps, and games that help us further that mission.
The COIN App
In my eyes, COIN is in the “young adult” stage of development.
The app continues to mature in many ways:
New features bring personality and surprise, and even sometimes failure (shake to minigame feature, anyone?) New partnerships open opportunities for growth and technological excitement. I’m also very excited to announce we’ve seen a steady increase in users despite many tribulations in the covid-era economy.
At the same time, COIN focuses still on a single goal: to provide users with a gamified way to exchange their time, attention, and data for value.
We’ve seen a lot of COIN users asking for redemption items with a lower cost than our cryptocurrency options, so we made one.
The Sweepstakes redeem option (currently US/UK only), allowing users to redeem COIN for a chance at winning amazing prices without needing to earn or spend the amount of COIN it takes for them.
For example, a user can now win a Nintendo Switch with 1 Sweepstakes Entry (10 COIN) instead of the couple hundred thousand COIN you’re used to seeing. Don’t worry — If you don’t like chance, you still can use all your regular redeem options.
So far, this feature has been very well received! We see users redeeming COIN for Sweepstakes entries every day, and we’ve now had over 20 users claim huge prizes inside the app! If you haven’t seen them already, be sure to check out some winner interviews on the COIN YouTube channel here.
We also piloted an exciting major feature in select zip codes around the US called “Business Verifications”.
This feature allows users to provide up-to-date info about businesses in their community to earn extra COIN and help keep data accurate. The results of our first test were great, and we are going to expand this into more areas soon.
You may have noticed a little COIN Makeover for other features as well:
- HODL Rewards now support for Uniswap (if you are wondering about Uniswap v3 support — it is now live!)
- The BridgeX is now supported in COIN to supercharge your Home Base
- Rewarded Play was added, which lets you earn COIN by playing other games (currently Android only)
- Geoclaim Area Change alerts and Geodrop Background Scanning now make it easier to up your game and stay in the know (currently iOS only)
And, we’re working on rolling out a cool new feature that allows you to get rewarded for sharing feedback about your recent store visits.
Last but not least, we’ve expanded the main feature of Geomining to include several different modes which allow you to further gamify your daily activities.
With Gamified Travel mode, you can select a destination and see the progress towards it along with your speed, altitude, and direction. In addition to all the rewards collected on the way, you will also find a Geodrop waiting for you once you arrive.
With Mental Exercise mode, you can combine Geomining with Tile Clearing mini games to keep your mind sharp. And, with Physical Exercise mode, you can track steps and reach your daily goals all while getting rewarded, which is the best way to create a new habit.
There’s also a new Physical Exercise mode, as well as a “Free Exploration” mode.
Different Devices, Different Features
I also wanted to take a moment to note that some features start (or stay) specific to Android or iOS. As much as we would love to be able to provide every feature to every user, there are often many legal and policy requirements for us to provide new features. For example, the App Store and Play Store have different app store policies and every country deals with sweepstakes laws differently.
We do our best to make sure each COIN user can get the best experience possible with our app, but also try to bring amazing new features, even if it does mean that only one device or user type will be able to utilize it.
COIN’s First Case Study & User Stories
One thing we’ve always been asked is “exactly what do I need to do to earn ______?”. It’s been a pretty tough question to answer, because no two users are the same, and different lifestyles, activities, and features all lead to different amounts of COIN.
Introducing User Stories.
User Stories are a way to hear stories from real, successful COIN users, and learn more about who they are and how they use COIN in their life. So far, we have quite a few drivers and stories from everyday people across the world.
We also released an in-depth Case Study User Story, which includes a full dataist breakdown of the users earnings over time and uncovers exactly how one user was able to earn enough to match the size of his 30-year mortgage.
Now I have saved the best for last.
For 2021, XYO and the XYO Token is the most exciting part of our story to me.
We started off the year focusing on finding ways to ‘unstick’ XYO World given the gas prices of Ethereum and thus the minting costs of new XYO World ERC721 tokens. We also started working on connecting XYO World to COIN in a way where the holders of XYO World tokens get rewards based on activities in COIN.
All this work helped us reach the understanding that we needed to move the XYO ERC20 Token, XYO World Token, and the XYO Network into the future. The conclusions we arrived at did derail our timeline a little for COIN rewards for XYO World ERC721 token holders, but it helped us determine the path for the entire system and how we can launch XYO 2.0 by the end of 2021 or early 2022.
I want to share this vision with you.
XYO Protocol 2.0
I realized that the original white paper of the XYO Protocol really described two protocols, one for data handling via bound witness chains, and the other for the network of devices that create, transport, store, and process that data.
In XYO Protocol 2.0, we are breaking these two concepts apart.
Now, we’ll have the XYO Data Protocol 2.0 and the XYO Network Protocol 2.0.
The Data Protocol covers Bound Witnesses and Proof of Origin chains and the Network Protocol covers the Sentinel, Bridge, Archivist, Diviner systems.
It is important to think of these two systems independently, specifically because it is possible to see future implementations of our technology using only one part of the full system.
The XYO Data Protocol Explained
The XYO Data Protocol, for example, can be used in both centralized and decentralized systems, or even just as a local cryptographic storage paradigm that includes audit trails. It allows for data validation and integrity checking after the fact.
In this case, you might see a solution for a company that already has a hardware infrastructure in place, but needs better verification for the data they are collecting from those devices. Think something like a global shipping company using their own scanners and tracking, but using the XYO Data Protocol for verification.
XYO Network Protocol Explained
On the other hand, the XYO Network Protocol is an implementation of decentralized systems that are working together to produce data validation and auditing, using the XYO Data Protocol.
This breakdown allows us to expand the potential, adoption, and application of XYO and our technology at large.
XYO Data Protocol 2.0 Transformation
The XYO Data Protocol can be described in a much simpler way that allows for easier and additional uses of the protocol. The only thing that requires agreement in this protocol for parties that want to share blocks is how to generate hashes of payloads in the block and how to sign the payload hashes and public keys of the witnesses.
In XYO Protocol 1.0, we chose to use a binary representation of all the data in the payloads, to force byte perfect alignment and thus 100% conformity of hash values. This worked very well, but was hard to use. The data in the payload was very difficult to consume given the constant need to decode it. This also made indexing on data stores more challenging.
In XYO Data Protocol 2.0, we are using a modified JSON model for payloads, allowing for easy storage in databases, and easy processing of the data. The simple conforming rules are as follows:
- Only using lower case letters for key names
- Keys are always sorted alphabetically
- No extra punctuation is allowed (carriage returns, spaces, newlines, etc…)
This allows for any party to generate a known string from a JSON object that can be hashed to a number that will match other parties. Much simpler, much cleaner.
We are currently in the process of upgrading the use of XYO in COIN to XYO Data Protocol 2.0.
XYO Network Protocol 2.0 Transformation
The major change to the network portion of the XYO Protocol in version 2.0 is that we are focusing on a centralized implementation of the four primary components (Sentinel, Bridge, Archivist, Diviner) over the decentralized versions. This is primarily in response to the lack of stable, adopted, and affordable decentralized smart contract systems that have shown demand by our partners.
This is similar to IPFS, in that it does not really matter where a valid block comes from, as long as it is valid. To accommodate this, we will be adding support for payment channels to the XYO ERC20 Token, allowing it to be used natively on both centralized and layer 2 decentralized systems.
XYO Payment Channels
High volume XYO token transactions, whether in the core data exchange protocol, or in XYO World, has proven to be prohibitive given that every transaction requires ETH gas to process. Using Payment Channels, both in XYO Network Protocol 2.0 and XYO World 4.0 will solve this issue. It allows for much more cost effective transactions, while still providing the needed security to the transferring parties.
XYO Data Marketplace
Combining the XYO Protocol 2.0 changes, COIN data producers and purchasers, and XYO Token Payment Channels, we will be able to have a true data marketplace that uses XYO Tokens as the low-cost payment method for data exchanges, without relying on the emergence of a cost-effective decentralized smart contract system.
XYO World 4.0
How does this all affect XYO World? In XYO World 4.0, we will move the auction system for GeoTokens off of the Ethereum Main Chain, and use the new XYO Token Payment Channel system to facilitate off-chain auctions. We will still require on-chain Ethereum minting of GeoToken NFTs, but the cost should be greatly reduced. This is because the auction of each GeoToken’s four child GeoTokens will no longer be triggered by minting.
We are still dedicated to having COIN rewards for the XYO World Token Holders, but until the 4.0 auction system is launched, we will hold off on that and still continue to allow the sponsor links in the COIN app for the XYO World Token holders. After the 4.0 upgrade, we intend to move to a new paradigm of COIN rewards and will then most likely update or deprecate the sponsor link system.
XYO 2.0 Data Protocol
XYO 2.0 Data Protocol / COIN Integration
XYO 2.0 JS/Kotlin/Swift Clients
XYO 2.0 Data Protocol Yellow Paper
XYO 2.0 Archivist (Centralized)
XYO 2.0 Diviner (Centralized)
XYO 2.0 Explorer
XYO 2.0 Network Protocol Yellow Paper
Full Deprecation of XYO Protocol 1.0 Stack and SDKs
XYO 2.0 Payment Channels
XYO World 4.0
XYO 2.0 Data Marketplace Yellow Paper
XYO 2.0 Data Marketplace
Between the progress of COIN as a business and the XYO Protocol and Network as a technology, XY Labs is in a very exciting place. We are currently a profitable company, providing us with a self-sustaining runway to continue to deliver exciting products to the market and to build on the vision of a decentralized future using XYO concepts and tokens to solve some of the most challenging problems of today.
Again, I would like to thank everyone for all the support that we have had throughout this process. Everyone here at XY Labs is excited to continue to contribute our time, blood, sweat, and tears to this effort.