Proposal “DashResearchAsiaQ1Funding2019“ (Active)Back

Title:Dash Research Asia Continued Funding
Owner:quantumexplorer
Monthly amount: 146 DASH (9489 USD)
Completed payments: no payments occurred yet (3 month remaining)
Payment start/end: 2018-11-16 / 2019-02-14 (added on 2018-11-14)
Final voting deadline: in passed
Votes: 666 Yes / 192 No / 46 Abstain
Will be funded: No. This proposal needs additional 14 Yes votes to become funded.
Manually vote on this proposal (DashCore - Tools - Debugconsole):
gobject vote-many faf1fd82f8e74a41adc33c32f936b8c09d0b45500f2ab1971d0ac54ccb3c867c funding yes

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Proposal description

Dash Research Asia Funding

Project summary

This proposal follows up to our initial efforts with Dash Research Asia.

The previous proposal had 5 goals that were successfully carried out:
  • Legal and organizational setup for Dash Research Asia in Bangkok, Thailand (approvals acquired!).
  • Research on probabilistic filters completed successfully. If integrated, we believe it would save the network cpu power worth multiple millions of dollars per year (done).
  • Publishing results in Journal of Future Generations Computer Systems (first research paper currently in peer review). Abstract can be found here.
  • Combination of probabilistic filters for multipeer light clients (needs review).
  • Established and currently running one of 2 Devnets (used by Dash Mobile Team and DashPay Team).

On top of that we also:
  • Translated all Dash Core content into Thai, and continue providing such a service.
  • Currently creating the BIP39 passphrase dictionary words for Thai, very essential for people who don’t understand roman characters. (soon to be completed).
  • Successfully established a partnership with the Dash Embassy Thailand to synergize our efforts, with DRA providing technical expertise and development for SE Asia companies who will be wanting to integrate Dash or build Dapps in evolution (done).
  • Helped organize a meetup for Dash Core in Bangkok, with some interns presenting their work to the Dash Core Tech Leads (done).

We chose Bangkok, Thailand as our headquarters for this project for several reasons.
  • Crypto-friendly government approach and open door policy.
  • Affordable office space, labor costs and lodging.
  • Incentive for foreign interns due to an energized and desirable working location.

In order to achieve these goals we had to establish a corporation that enabled us to:
  • Get a BOI (Board of Investment Thailand) license, this is only granted after many talks and interviews to projects that are deemed to bring value to Thailand - done
  • Setup full legal structure that enables full operational capability in Thailand - done
  • Being able to hire locals AND foreigners with legal working visas - done
  • Receiving the BOI approval allows Dash Research Asia to operate without corporate tax for 8 years - done

This current proposal:
  • Will try to establish a self-sustaining Dapp creation entity, and create some of the first Dapps for it. Read about this later on.
  • Pays salaries to continue the program going: looking for students for 2019, hire a research coordinator, translation work, office rent, and day to day expenses.
  • Pays cloud costs for our devnet.

And as before I will not be taking a duff (any compensation) from this proposal.

Dash Research Asia - our success story

The first proposal has been a big success, especially considering the budget depreciation. We were able to establish the legal and business setup needed to grow a high quality research section for Dash. Since we now have that legal entity approved in Thailand we can hire foreigners. With this setup we were able to target and solve important research on the topics mentioned above, which we believe are not only needed for further development of Dash as a whole but also are able to save the network a substantial amount of funds in the future, if implemented.The main advancement that was made during the summer were advancements on probabilistic filters. We have shown that we can save a drastic amount of cpu power vs the inefficient bloom filters that are currently in use. One paper was written and it is currently being reviewed by a journal. After peer review we expect to have it published. This work will make masternodes more efficient and could potentially solve many scaling issues we might face. It’s hard to know exactly how much money this will save the masternode network without first knowing the usage that we will get in evolution, but I would say it could easily be between 1 Million and 5 Million dollars per year. The paper can not be made public until it is published, however an abstract can be found here. If you are a recognized community member I can share the full paper if you contact me on discord, but please only contact me if you are actually going to read it, as it may take me time to vet some people.
We have also been able to establish a first partnership with Ecole Polytechnique in Paris, which is planning to cooperate on our research when we have a research coordinator (planned to hire when this proposal passes). This year we did not have the capacity to start a research project with the school, however that is planned for 2019.
With a professional HR approach we were able to attract high quality interns from some of the best universities from around the world (notably in France and Thailand). We had a total of three highly qualified interns for a period of three month each. This internship program was a success. We received well over 100 applicants and already have applicants for 2019, just from word of mouth.

Due to the sharp downtrend of Dash price from February, we were unfortunately not able to hire as many interns as we originally planned (3 instead of 6). We, therefore, were not able to complete as many research tasks as originally estimated. Moreover, acquiring the BOI license from the Thai government took much longer than expected and involved various interviews with our team members and me giving a presentation in front a government committee to prove we were bringing cutting-edge tech into the country. That presentation went very well and we received our BOI status.

What’s next - Goals for 2019

With the BOI approval out of the way, and the ability to officially hire (and have visas) our team will be focused on 2 main goals for 2019.

A self-sustaining Dapp creation entity:
This is a major goal for 2019, we aim to help the community and then partners create Dapps on evolution. Once this is setup, we hope to offset all of our administrative costs by selling this service to entities wanting to create Dapps. This is a tall order to achieve, and we hope to achieve it at least by the fall of 2019 at which point, we aim to reduce by about 50% our requests to the network.

An improved 2019 internship program:
While I truly believe the value created by the internship program this year was worth the price tag as well as the effort put in, I also saw a lot of things that need to be improved in 2019. For 2018, while we received about 150 applications, a great deal of these were not from top universities, and in the end we only took 3 students, of which only 2 worked on research, and one coded. Through word of mouth and stronger ties to universities we will have more applicants from better universities already for 2019, which should translate to more achievements and a better ROI. We will also hire a dedicated research coordinator whose main goal will be to coordinate the research we do with Dash Core, Arizona State University and Dash Labs. This task fell onto my lap this year, however the obligations I had in Dash Core led to bandwidth issues for myself and essentially doing two jobs. We already have a few applicants for this position that I believe will be able to carry out the role in a much better capacity than me when overworked.

Costs

Starting in January, and with the potential hires we want to make, we estimate our burn rate to be around 20k USD/month which will cover expenses for the office and salaries for 6 people. There will be an increase during the internship summer months to around 40k/month. Our goal with the self-sustaining Dapp entity, would be to eventually only request funding in the summer, and have Dash Research Asia be self sufficient on revenue from Dapp creation.

We made this proposal for 146 Dash per month to give us a 10% margin in case of depreciation and unforeseen circumstances. 

I am here to answer any questions that anyone might have, either here or on discord.



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Discussion: Should we fund this proposal?

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2 points,13 days ago
When it comes down between funding expensive promotion in Western country's and choosing development/research, in market that currently it's very welcoming to marketing, this is an easy yes vote, but as it stands, marketing seem to be highly more favored by others
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-1 point,7 days ago
I agree, development/research is much more crucial at this stage. Can't understand the MNO voting No. What is wrong?
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1 point,13 days ago
*There no room for both
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2 points,14 days ago
Q: Why is this called Dash Research Asia if it has to do with DAPPS? challenge: name would be much better with Dash DAPPS Research : )
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2 points,14 days ago
The original goal of the entity was only research. However the Thai government wanted us to deliver something of value to Thailand in order to get our government approvals. Dapps were the clear answer, as it was something they understood, and made the most sense as well because we will need people writing them anyways. So a win-win for all involved.

After getting the approvals (quite hard to get, and giving us amazing tax benefits, aka no tax for 8 years in software dev) we now need to provide capital funding. Originally we had enough with the original proposal, however as the price of Dash depreciated we just did not have enough fiat, hence this proposal to provide enough for capital funding and hire a few devs dedicated to building dapps.

We do still plan to simultaneously do research, but not in the next 4/5 months.
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0 points,12 days ago
Thanks. And since this is a large proposal of 146/month, wud like to share more details for voters on what DAPPS will be creating?
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2 points,16 days ago
One of the Brilliant students from the last round of funding and work, has referred a number of his very talented friends for the next round of funding/work. This kind of talent is hard to come by in the crypto space. If we don't fund this, we lose the talent pool. Voting yes.
solarguy
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1 point,14 days ago
I agree 100%. Got my votes, keep up the great work!

Walter
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1 point,14 days ago
Thanks Solarguy and Walters. Your words of encouragement are much appreciated.
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3 points,18 days ago
Voting Yes. Although I do not know Quantumexplorer directly I do know there is a deep commitment and contribution to the DASH project for an extended period from this developer. I feel we need more people with passion like this to support DASH development.
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3 points,20 days ago
easy yes from me
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0 points,20 days ago
Is there a video presentation or interview available? Thanks!
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3 points,24 days ago
voting YES. additional note: quantumexplorer >>> A dev here who has been around since week 3 and possibly came up with the name 'Dash'.
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1 point,24 days ago
I have read the comments.

The project seems interesting for Dash Evolution to have a pre-ecosystem of dapps development.

You mentioned that the requirements of the Thai government was necessary to establish a business organization for profit. (I understand).

I had the following questions:

Do you have a roadmap and future plans to try to be financially self-sufficient? Have income based on the work done on the equipment you are assembling.

In the future, when the Dash Ventures investment fund is established.
Would you give part of the shares of the company established in Thailand to the structure of the fund?

Thanks for the proposal.
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3 points,24 days ago
Hi blockchaintech, my plan is for the first 6 months after evolution is out on testnet is to have the team make dapps for our network/community while we form the hired developers. This will give us time to find potential customers who wish to build dapps as well. Once we have customers I believe we can quickly become self sufficient, as least for the dapp/administrative side of things.

When the Dash Ventures investment fund is established I would be gladly open to giving a part of the shares as long as I can by law. We have a law firm that takes Dash in Thailand now, but I would wait till the price goes up to request funding to see if we can find a way to transfer ownership of some shares to dash ventures.
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5 points,25 days ago
This is critically important research in an effort to make the computations necessary to run Evolution approximately an order of magnitude faster and more efficient. I think I have stated that correctly, if very generally.

And quantum explorer is being modest, which I totally respect. He is one of the devs that has been with us the longest. He is deeply immersed in the Dash project, and for all the right reasons. He works a silly number of hours for us and has accomplished a lot. He's the guy that named Dash "Dash" for pete's sake.

This kind of cutting edge research is what will make Dash competitive and successful in the long run. The cost of doing this research in Thailand has to be half or less what it would cost in the West. And it's a clever way to attract talent that could grow into the Dash dev team if they work out well.

Money well spent, hitting their goals, and an easy yes for me.
solarguy
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1 point,25 days ago
> the *fall* of 2019

> during the internship *summer* months

> request funding in the *summer*

There is no fall or summer in Thailand, or ~half of the world (the tropics).

~Half the world where there is a fall and summer (the southern hemisphere) they happen during different months than the months you are trying to refer to.

~Half of the English speaking world were there is a fall call it autumn not fall.

Try referring to months or quarters.
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4 points,26 days ago
I think people are overlooking the fact that we need talented people creating Dapps to flesh out our ecosystem. This serves that purpose as well as creates an entity associated with the network that has the long-term goal of not being dependent on us for funding.

It's an important initiative and I hope that it passes
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4 points,26 days ago
you have my support, good luck.
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1 point,26 days ago
@quantimexplorer your asking the network for 60k to start a for profit entity, which will provide you substantial benefits down the road, the aforementioned entity creates dapps for profit, which solely benefits the PO.

Furthermore you already received 460dash as per the last report and most of your results came back as unverified

Maybe your not making a single dash off the proposal but does not mean you entirely do not benefit from it being funded (network funding your development costs i.e devnet devs etc )
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3 points,26 days ago
There was no way to do this in Thailand without creating a for profit entity. Our lawyers told us so. I would never have been able to get a structure in place that could allow me to hire foreigners or take students. This year we had a pass because we were going for the approvals, but it's just this year.

I'm doing this solely for the benefit of the network, not my own, I worked pretty much 80 hour weeks this summer and did this on top of my job in core and didn't take a cent from it just for the benefit of the network.

While dapps might become profitable in 2 or 3 years it's a big gamble, and I think the main beneficiaries of the initial dapps will be the dash ecosystem, one of the first dapps we would want to make is one for dash news, maybe even partner up with dash force news.

I want to be clear, if this does not pass, I won't try any harder to get it to pass in another cycle. The effort I put in here is too high, and I really don't want to burn out because of this. I'll go back to solely having my obligations in Dash Core.

If this does not pass it's not the end of the world, but we won't have any internship program anymore in Dash, we won't have any dapp creation entity at the launch of evolution (unless someone else makes another entity in time), and maybe the worst part is that we will have burned a bridge in Thailand that cost us a lot of time and effort to create.

Here's an abstract of one of our research papers, I don't know why the dash-watch report wasn't updated. https://drive.google.com/file/d/1MvkCG4j1wjIVbXzigMBiTf7VggLO-PNt/view?usp=sharing

I can share you the full research paper if you want as well, just message me on discord.

I can also show you personally all the work we have done, and verify each item on the list with pictures and screenshots. I just thought it was overkill for this proposal to post all of it above. I've been in Dash since week 3 I think, even came up with the Dash name, I'm one of the longest developers still in the team, after udjinm6, if it's not clear I want what's best for the network at this point I don't know what it would take.
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2 points,27 days ago
It looks promising - good luck with this initiative!
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3 points,28 days ago
@quantumexplorer as you are an mno MNO i would have liked to seen a more thorough detailed proposal, not simply "we estimate 20k for 6 people"

In your proposal it lacks clarity in respect to what the roi is for the network

Furthermore if you could kindly provide a link to dash watch reports for your previously submitted proposal

Thank you
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2 points,28 days ago
Hi Realmrhack,

I am happy to answer your concerns as I think they are perfectly reasonable.

First, for the estimate of costs, I believe it might be disrespectful to publish individual salaries. I'm not taking a duff from this proposal so I'm hoping that it is obvious that $17k (there is close to $3k for other costs) for 6 people is a pretty cost effective approach. This being Thailand there are of course discrepancies between salaries based on experience. It is hard however to find someone who can do advanced research and be a research coordinator and who doesn't ask for market rates.

In terms of ROI, I truly believe that the last proposal will save the network well over $1M in cpu costs. The main reason why I'm not pushing this so strongly is that until it is merged into core it's just a promise, and I don't like doing promises as much as I like showing results. If you read the summary, up to x9 in cpu gains for probabilistic filters really can't be ignored. Next year we will mostly be working on zero sum knowledge proofs for the internship side of things, but again I don't want to promise this because if we change direction it might be seen as a betrayal for people really wanting us to go in this direction. By experience I know that by May we might have a very different set of problems to solve.

What I really want to achieve in this proposal is to create an entity that isn't dependent on the network for most of it's funding, I really think that there will be a great demand for Dapps early next year and I want to form developers to respond to that demand.

I think this might be the last Dashwatch report : https://dashwatch.org/files/1530473283426.pdf

Let me know if you have any more concerns,

--Q
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2 points,28 days ago
Thanks for this great Proposal. That's exactly what we need! looking forward to combine our efforts, with DRA providing technical expertise and development for SE-Asia companies wanting to integrate Dash or build Dapps in evolution ...Full support!
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