AMA Highlights – Ocean Protocol
By Daniel Dal Bello, Director.
August 30, 2020 – 9 min read.
On Thursday 2 July, we welcomed Bruce Pon, Founder of Ocean Protocol into the Hillrise Capital Telegram chat for an AMA. Ocean Protocol’s token OCEAN has been on a sharp upward trajectory over the past few months since our conversation with Bruce. This is due to a mix of strengthening fundamentals, increasing awareness of the company and their technology, and speculation alike.
Bruce has studied at MIT and has an extensive background including time at Daimler AG and as a founder of several startups. Bruce’s first work in the blockchain world came in 2014 with ascribe.io. Bruce is a founder of both BigchainDB GmbH and Ocean Protocol.
In this post, we have compiled key questions and answers from our AMA event.
Daniel Dal Bello
Bruce could you start with some background and insight into your individual background prior to Ocean Protocol and especially prior to joining the blockchain space? Where does data fit in with blockchain tech?
Thank you for having me and compliments to you for gathering an enthusiastic community of crypto-enthusiasts here. I have been working on blockchain since 2013, around the time when BTC had a peak of $1,300. We started by working to put intellectual property on the blockchain with ascribe.io, like what CryptoKitties, SuperRare and others are doing now.
Then, realizing that the idea of NFTs was too early for this stage of the technology, we pivoted to BigchainDB – a database with blockchain characteristics. This was a good move because it gave us some of the earliest insights about how companies and individuals could share data using blockchain. After 2 years on BigchainDB, it was clear that the confluence of AI, blockchain and data would be a massive opportunity. And that if we could leverage the advantages of blockchain for access control, tracking and provenance, we could equalize opportunity for everyone around the globe – this became Ocean Protocol.
“It was clear that the confluence of AI, blockchain and data would be a massive opportunity.”
Daniel Dal Bello
It’s interesting to hear that you’ve been in this space for so long and that Ocean Protocol was where everything culminated for you with your past in BigchainDB.
Could you explain Ocean v3 in layman’s terms? What are data tokens?
Sure, happy to. In a nutshell, it is decentralized access control. Most people know the advantages of blockchain relating to transparency, auditability and custodian-less control. One feature of blockchain that is particularly useful for data is access control.
Imagine trying to attend a very popular online event with limited access, a private event, a concert, a speech with Elon Musk. Instead of whipping out your Visa and buying entry using Eventbrite, the tickets are issued as “Data Tokens”. These tokens are transferable, so the person buying tokens doesn’t need to attend themselves, but they can resell them. Nowadays, people might call it scalping – but there are some nice advantages in a blockchain world.
Here are some features:
1. The buyer can come from anywhere on earth, without needing to have a credit card.
2. The access tokens could be put on an exchange, where the price fluctuates based on demand, transparently and [they are] available to all.
3. When the event starts, people use/spend the token to enter the event.
This is Ocean v3 in a nutshell.
This means that access has been decentralized and [is] available to everyone. It applies to data, but also to any digital asset, events, software, subscriptions, news, etc. We think that the tools of DeFi will allow data tokens to integrate and inter-operate with the Ethereum community and other smart contract platforms.
Daniel Dal Bello
Further to that example you’ve just given, how would you have these tokens tradeable like you mentioned? Would you create some kind of marketplace for that?
You can now use bootstrap liquidity [with] providers like Uniswap, Balancer and other DEXs for this. We imagine that in the future, there might be category-specific “access control token” exchanges. Imagine “Binance Token Exchange” that deals in collectibles, data tokens, events, etc. It would unlock a huge untapped “Data Economy”. One of the learnings from the last couple of years is that a protocol is most adoptable, when it is a tool – like Uniswap or Balancer. Then, other services rally around and create a stronger ecosystem along with the tool.
“One of the learnings from the last couple of years is that a protocol is most adoptable, when it is a tool – like Uniswap or Balancer.”