Hello IAmA / Redditor!

First of all, really happy to be doing this! To start with, we are ProjectHydro.org, a community backed blockchain project having global presence (From Europe to Asia to US). Trying to make blockchain mainstream by focusing on user experience and creating layer 2, layer 3 functionalities over Ethereum. Here to field questions about blockchain, decentralization, involving community on building Hydro or anything in between!

Joining me for the AMA are Robert Kodra - President of Project Hydro, Joel Kite - Vice President, Mark Anstead - Lead Bizdev, The entire team is also available if you want to field your question to them. Mark is already en-route to Malta for attending the AI & Blockchain Summit 2019 (we are one of top 10 finalist), he has promised to answer all the questions aimed at him during the layovers, make him regret that decision :slightly_smiling_face:.

In all seriousness, really excited for the AMA. We would also be rushing to catch our flight just after wrapping up this AMA. You all are more than welcome to come find us and do an AMA face to face over at Malta as well.

Ask us Anything and we will do our best to answer all the questions.

IAmA policy checklist:

  1. Do you have existing funding in a fiat currency? Yes, we are already funded.
  2. Is your product not only prototyped, but actually in use in a real world situation? Yes, though wish to explain this further for full transparency. Hydro, unlike most projects have different phases (Raindrop, Snowflake, Ice, Tide, Mist and Hail) which tackle different tech issues of the world. Raindrop (MFA competitor) to Google and blockchain based MFA is already live and used by people, available on iOS / Appstore, has several plugins for various platforms (Wordpress, Drupal, etc). Snowflake protocol is live while the dApp Store is on testnet public beta, Tide is done as well while development is on for Ice and Hail. Mist is on brainstorming and architecting phase right now.
  3. Do you have an income with value in fiat currency? Yes, we do... Hydro is listed on Upbit and Bittrex among other exchanges.

Proof: https://imgur.com/a/sGctR7U

Update 1: Thanks for all the questions, It was great to engage and try to answer each one of them... you guys rock! It's 4 AM at my end of the World so I would pass the torch to Mark, Marcco and Tim Allard for now. Do keep on posting your questions and I will make sure to answer the ones intended for me in 6 hours or so.

Update 2: Thanks for engaging with us on this AMA! It was an awesome experience for all of us. I will be reaching Malta on 22nd to attend the AI & Blockchain conference, most of Team Hydro delegation will also reach there by 22nd. For anyone who is going to be there: It would be awesome to talk face to face about all things Blockchain! I will be checking the thread on and off while on the flight so see if there are additional questions as well.

Comments: 157 • Responses: 32  • Date: 

makyo141 karma

This seems like a sales pitch to me. Am I wrong?

Prodoggy9 karma

haha... you are not completely wrong. We do like to spread awareness of our project but this is just us answering questions to the best of our abilities. We realized that our team comes from various spectrum of fields, age, talent and experience so thought it would be good to share it.

Our focus for the AMA would be to answer all questions sincerely since that usually is the best way to spread knowledge and have people know what you do...

Clevelandlandlord1 karma

My home town "cleveland" is trying to become a block chain hub. What resources should I explore to try and understand the business applications of Block Chain.

Prodoggy2 karma

So sorry to have missed this question. Good to know Cleveland is embracing blockchain. For exploring business use cases, I would recommend reading about smart contracts from a non-coder perspective to understand what they are capable of doing. This knowledge will help in devising solutions for various aspects and issues which you could encounter when you look to implement blockchain in any field.

Youtube and several articles from google is going to be the best bet, I would also recommend checking out https://cryptozombies.io/, while it's built for the developer, the way they explain logic will help you understand few limitations of blockchain, how it helps, etc.

As a rule of thumb, I also would advice that whenever you are trying to see a business application for the blockchain, always ask yourself the question that whether the application you are building can be done via a central database without impacting the thing which you are trying to achieve. If the answer to that is yes, then you should rework that logic or look into different aspect. A very rough example of it is storing your employment records on chain (encrypted) but available to recruitment agencies so that the records are never compromised either by the company you work with or by you, this can't be done centrally so using blockchain for this might make sense.

Hope this helps.

Philboyd_Studge26 karma

Name one "real world problem" that block chain solves, and explain how it solves that? It's literally just hashing. Also, what happens when AI breaks SHA256?

Edit: "AI" was a poor choice of words. I meant sufficiently advanced technology.

YouWouldntStealABaby22 karma

Exactly what I'd ask. Crypto currencies are literally the biggest load of bollocks ever.

Prodoggy-21 karma

To be honest, some are as they don't get nor try to have a proper vision in mind before reeling in to sell the hype. But there are few awesome ones as well... just like in any sector.

houlmyhead13 karma

Thats not an answer to the question though

Prodoggy4 karma

My bad, thought was answering YouWouldntStealABaby (I get that IT crowd reference... haha). I answered this on the thread below: https://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/bqx7b9/i_am_harsh_rajat_part_of_hydros_global_team/eo8rwqa?utm_source=share&utm_medium=web2x

andasoindasoidnasd12 karma

I don't think block chain tech has that much potential but this comment reeks of intellectual arrogance.

Block chain is more than just hashing, it's a decentralized consensus mechanism, amongst other things. "It's literally just hashing" is a vast over simplification.

How can AI break SHA256? SHA256 is a one way hash function. It definitionally loses information about the original content. If by breaking you mean generate collisions, then that is pretty hard:

https://crypto.stackexchange.com/questions/52571/computational-requirements-for-breaking-sha-256

Prodoggy-7 karma

Thanks for answering this. I do however believe that blockchain can and will disrupt any centralized organization. This includes real estate, insurance, hospitals and almost all other sectors that are either centralized or just over charge for their services. Just need innovative projects to tackle them and some of the projects are really close to doing it.

Prodoggy1 karma

There are many real world problems that blockchain solves, just a little out of the box approach is required. One example is storing property records on chain. People especially in developing nation have that problem of documents manhandling or changing documents, blockchain completely eliminates it as no central ownership is there to corrupt.

Another awesome solution is using escrow account to store money related to selling / buying a property. If the owner transfers the property and the on chain record reflects it, money is released else the entire transaction is cancelled after x months or so... saving users from a lot of headaches and court cases.

You are right on about AI (quantum computer to be exact) to break the public-private key and that's a real concern but then again, blockchain is evolving along with it and I am sure we will find a way around it (I believe NEO is already built with that concern) and Ethereum and others are brainstorming to solve this problem as well.

RobustMarquis8 karma

Watch this: my name is Dictator Bob and i kill you, seize your property, and declare your proof of property illegitimite. Dictator Bob was born in the 1800s. I see no aspect of blockchain that fixes this.

Prodoggy3 karma

I would be very scared of Dictator Bob. You are right in the sense that if the entire system is compromised then no, blockchain will not fix that.

Publius121 karma

"Decentralization" that makes the money of the wealthy more secure and not less secure isn't solving anyone's problems, in fact it is maintaining a status quo which is quickly becoming a problem for humanity and all life on earth as we careen toward climate catastrophe.

"entrepreneurs" who pretend they are changing the world disgust me. social change requires mass movements and it cannot happen through your stupid business, or any of the normal channels of our economy.

Prodoggy-1 karma

I do understand where you are coming from. But the examples were just a part of a use case scenario. There are many others who are in fact changing the world albeit bit by bit. To me, mass movement is just people joining a cause if they see it making their life easier, simpler or better and blockchain is doing that. Coincidentally, I was reading a few days back how blockchain can help rid poverty: https://hackernoon.com/3-ways-blockchain-can-combat-poverty-18827e5aacaf, it really is what made me think about the examples I posted above.

nagumi1 karma

Luckily, all these currencies have evolving code bases and are moving to new encryption methods. Many are focused on quantum-proofing their code.

Prodoggy1 karma

Yes.. that's what we think as well.

piyoucaneat19 karma

Are y’all /r/hydrohomies?

Prodoggy16 karma

No... not really, but looking at the sub. I think we all should be :)

deerinthefield10 karma

What are the potential limitations or dangers of blockchain technology?

Prodoggy17 karma

Well, Blockchain technology is new so there are many limitations and dangers to it, but so is the case with all the new tech which comes in.

A major limitation of the current implementation is how a user is expected to understand all the concepts associated to it, how to use it properly and the famous analogy of seed words, private keys. They got me scratching my head when I first began. I don't think it should be like this and see it as a major hurdle to adoption... especially in the current age where everything should (rightly) just work without expectations from users. From a tech / developer perspective, the coding feels quite weird, again because of the points outlined above.

The dangers of blockchain tech is mainly the way a smart contract is coded and executed. It has the capability of taking any middle man out and create a truly decentralized machine to machine economy but on the downside, a poorly written contract (or code) can never be changed so any bugs in it is disastrous. For the project as well as for the users as well, which unfortunately has happened more times than anyone acknowledges.

NotBabaYaga8 karma

Very interesting point, how would you go about solving such an issue?

Prodoggy1 karma

Solving the user experience point is just going through the product again and again to see what you can eliminate from the learning curve of the user. I don't believe that adoption will come by teaching everyone about new lingos. This means that any product (even if it's revolutionary) is not public ready unless you can compete with the existing centralized competitors in on boarding and the flow. This is not as easy as it sounds as people who are involve in the industry are so used to these terminologies now that they forget how hard it was for them when they started but some are beginning to pay attention to it as well.

What we do is we try to force our product or things we are building to our non-crypto friends and that's why we are running out of friends... haha.

For the dangers, it's really an issue which needs constant audits, 4-6 months of product on testnet (a testing version of blockchain network with dummy crypto and constantly engaging with people to see if you missed something out. Sadly, these sometimes don't fit with a few crypto projects as either they want to be a first in doing something or become instant millionaires.

AlternativeHole5 karma

I try to keep up with crypto-related technologies but often I can't seem to connect the economics how of the "currency" tied to the blockchain technology actually works. In other words, how does the currency of hydro tie into what you're trying to solve?

If I'm understanding this correctly, you are trying to create a solution for being able to secure someone's identity via authentication, documentation, and payment. What does the underlying currency have to do with this? Why would the coin/eth matter and why would the coin increase or decrease in value?

Prodoggy3 karma

You are right in the sense that the Hydro currency is probably not required in enabling these functionalities and Ethereum could have been used. Deviating from the question a bit, we do have atomic swap so Hydro is not needed upfront. a user could just come to our v2 dApp store and swap Eth to Hydro without any hassle.

Well, back to the question, any tokens created are usually not required as those features of a smart contract can usually also be done in ether. But having them ensures that the team has some funds if the work they do proves to be good enough. That being said, the eco-system which we have created ties Hydro currency to dApp developers in the sense that they would have to stake some tokens to have their app available on our dApp store (to counter bad actors if they slip though). Our Raindrop (Authentication protocol) is free for users but requires enterprises to use Hydro (either via staking) or perform an on chain transaction for sensitive data access.

Having said that, another reason for using Hydro and having some reserved funds ties to the fact that we never did any ICO and just airdropped tokens. This was done to make it essential to us to drive the product imagined in whitepaper forward before we can have any value attached to our coin.

For the funds reserved, most of it is for development which is mostly outsourced to the community as we wanted an active community driven developing the project from the start, think we have given away 50 Million tokens so far and planning to give so much more for completion of the tasks, you can check out the active bounty list here: https://projecthydro.org/bounty-programs/hcdp-tasks/ and can even add your suggestions and a proposed bounty and we will award the project to you if the elected team feels it adds value to our eco-system. In addition to this, we have also reserved some of funds mainly to ensure that we have operation budget for 2 years (which should be sufficient to complete products and make the impact we desire).

Hope this answers your question.

Zootropic5 karma

I read that initially as Hydras team. You sure you’re not part of Hydras team?

Prodoggy5 karma

haha.. Hail Hydra...sad that cap won't be around for red skull!

seven7hwave5 karma

Nice to see an ETH-based project popping up in an AMA.

Can you tell us more about your layer-2 solution? Is it a Plasma variant? Something that leverages ZKP's? A validator sidechain?

Also, what do you mean by "layer 3"?

Prodoggy6 karma

Alright, So let me describe it like this:

  • Layer 1 is Ethereum... this is what all erc 20 tokens use to build their contracts, tokens and dApps on it.
  • Layer 2 are the protocols which we have built or are building. This includes Raindrop, Snowflake, Ice, Tide contracts, etc etc. They utilize layer 1 to achieve functionalities like Identity (Snowflake Protocol), Payments, Interests, Coupons, Lottery (Tide Protocol), File Management System (Ice Protocol), Authentication (Raindrop Protocol) etc etc
  • These functionalities in combination enables us to create cool dApps and Apps which become layer 3. Like how dApp Store uses ERC1484 (Identity Protocol of ours) and Snowflake (Payment and Resolvers).
  • Like dApp Store, the dApps which we build also utilizes these layer 2 protocols and their functionalities to create cool workflows. For example, the Ownership dApp built Javier Zafra (Hydro) which uses snowflake and identity. The Hydro Drive of ours which uses snowflake and ice. The Hydro Pay of ours which uses snowflake and tide and so on and so forth.
  • Layer 4 are people who are building on top of these... like hydrogen who might use some of the dApp smart contract (layer 3) along with some protocols (layer 2) and other Ethereum functionality. So example can be they build an app which uses layer 3, 2, 1 functionalities along with some added functionalities which they devise. That’s the entire layer architecture or ours.

Hope this helps.

TomSwirly4 karma

We've had over a decade of cryptocurrencies, and so far the real world applications have entirely been criminal - money laundering, tax evasion, purchasing illegal goods and services.

Do you expect this to change? Your proposal doesn't seem to address this at all.

Prodoggy3 karma

imo Tax evasion, illegal goods and services are something which be finding new ways to side step law and crypto being the new way falls to it. It's really no different than cash or illegal transactions of any kind. Money in any form will always attract criminals.

I do expect law to get better on this, just how they got smarter with catching cash transactions. With blockchain, the entire transaction is available for everyone to see (except privacy coins which are a different issue all together) and this makes it a little less appealing than cash in the long run when agencies have upgraded themselves to catch this. Cash on the other hand offers no such mechanism so yes, I do see it going down in the long run.

As for real world applications, I believe they are already there. Just imagine a world, where you don't have to deal with disputes as they are stored on blockchain and thus can't be tampered with. Or, imagine a case where people can remit dollars instantly and incur just 10 cents as fees on it. These are not in the distant future but has already happened.

Will blockchain overtake every sector? I don't think so but yes some will be replaced sooner than later.

As for us, we are trying to connect Identities to a set of addresses and then building services like fraud detection, remittance, kyc, etc on top of our protocols. Taken together, we hope to solve some of the issues which are currently present.

gocchisama3 karma

hello!

How far are we from an efficient, hackproof DAO? (Decentralized autonomous organization)

Which project is the closest to a functional DAO?

thanks!

Prodoggy3 karma

Decentralized autonomous organization

I would say we are not there yet. A lot of projects are making good progress but I also attach a time variable to anything that cites itself hackproof. Bitcoin in 2009 was an awesome concept but it only attained immutability status once it withstood the test of time. See Ethereum for example, we are building on top of it but Ethereum went through a hack (the outcome of which resulted in Ethereum classic) so any DAO are just that, trying the concept they have at this point.

Only with time, they can attain hackproof and efficient status. Don't have that much knowledge on which project is closest to a functional DAO as of now.

momogogi3 karma

How would you explain block chain technology to a layman?

Prodoggy1 karma

This is toughie but I will try... in ELI5, blockchain tech is having a computer network handle all task without any intervention from a human. This computer network is anonymous and can't be shut down (atleast very very hard to do) so you cannot corrupt it. Task can be anything from recording a transaction to creating a if / else scenario which can go ahead and do their job once started and anyone can read the task done and the history of it along with almost all the things the task creator has built in the system.

Hope this answers (and answers it right :sweat smile:)

Prodoggy5 karma

Also, this is from /u/milvus

Look at the blockchain like an address book in a growing town. Every house has a copy of the address book and every time a new house is built the address book in every house is updated.

If a crook tries to edit the address book, the crooks address book won't match up with details held by the other houses and they will be caught.

In order to change the address book the crook would have to break into every house and change every single address book at the exact same time.

DigiMagic4 karma

Say I'm a crook and I enter the address of my totally_honest_not_robbing_people_here house into the system. Am I understanding correctly that the system is set up in such a way, that there is no way to rename my house into crook's_house and people will be coming to it indefinitely?

Prodoggy4 karma

For a crook to trick the system, it has to change 51% of address books as those address books are constantly verifying themselves. So, as the number grows (say 5000 address books) then a crook needs to change 2501 ones which makes it quite improbable.

imanAholebutimfunny2 karma

With the technology you have, how will it be used to better enhance society?

Prodoggy3 karma

There are several cases as /u/sadfool1 has outlined. To elaborate on this, the features we have / are building can:

  1. Enable user to have a single identity across all their wallets (Ether) in a simple, trustable way - This helps them in avoiding importing their keys and also gives sort of an aggregate identity to the user.
  2. This single identity powers our dApp store, this is done to ensure that a user is identified by a single identity and not multiple wallets. - This ensures that a user get's access to their existing data stored even when they are on a different device (having a different wallet), i.e. adding to user experience and eliminating import of private keys which not many would do in a secure manner.
  3. This single identity then powers our entire eco-system and a range of protocols, namely Tide (which is payment protocol, takes care of interest calculation, lending, lottery on chain) - This opens up a range of apps which we can build for the users, some of the current things we are working at using this are Hydro Pay (p2p app) and Hydro X (remittance)
  4. Our Ice protocol builds a file management system on top of our identity protocol, along with storing of encrypted files, transferring files, stamping files, sharing files / groups - This opens up the possibility of having an on-chain drive (kinda like google drive). The use cases for this are using it to create a KYC dApp that stores encrypted user's information on storage blockchain and forms a file management system for that user on ethereum blockchain. we can then eliminate multiple KYCs from different institutions by tying up with them, this saves cost for them and ensures that users always own these files (making sure that central breach of kyc data is averted).
  5. The Tide and Snowflake identity also helps us in attaching transactions data done by multiple addresses to a user which then is fed to our Mist protocol to detect fraud by analyzing those transactions and picking up behavior pattern - This can help the ethereum community in general as before sending a money to a wallet, they can check the risk factor of the wallet

There are several other ways by which it could work really well. hope this answers your question.

Superjain1232 karma

hey guys, two questions:

  1. why pick ethereum over other ones? and

  2. when will Eth hit 1000+ again, if at all?

Prodoggy1 karma

sure.

  1. Ethereum is the most mature platform out there. There are some limitations of speed attached to it right now but it started the smart contracts movement. We did contemplate moving to newer smart contracts based platforms but eventually decided to stay as I mentioned, we found Ethereum to be mature and upcoming upgrades to satisfy our need for speed ;).
  2. I have stopped answering this question after I made my family FOMO on bitcoin around $15k. They are getting excited about crypto again though so that's a good sign.

Raven_Crowking1 karma

How much damage would a storm giant wielding a blockchain do?

Prodoggy3 karma

None :), While I haven't played tabletop rpg, I do know DND reference when I see one.

Mikeman2061 karma

I literally read that you were part of hydra By the way, what real world problems are you going to solve?

Prodoggy3 karma

haha... as mentioned below, I am proposing that as an internal way of greeting for all the team members of Hydro.

We are trying to solve many as we have divided our project into several phases.

  1. Raindrop was our first phase and is already done. In a nutshell, it utilizes blockchain to do multi factor authentication, it's already live and we already have it available for instant integration on numerous platforms like Wordpress, Drupal, Joomla and many others. This phase focused on ensuring security and already have websites which have implemented it. you can read more about it here if you wish to.
  2. Snowflake / ERC-1484 is our Identity phase, it connects or aggregates all associated addresses and gives them an identity without exposing the user. This is built to power the entire eco-system and exposes a lot of cool features to handle. Example is our dApp Store which utilizes this to provide a hassle free user experience and security to user by ensuring that they have to deal with importing a private key anywhere else, it's just click and connect. Another Example is using this phase with Ice phase of ours to build a KYC dApp which any exchange can use with the user's permission so that the user is instantly verified and the organization doesn't have to pay for a KYC process. The user is in full control of the document and they never have to give their personal info out. Snowflake protocol is live and dApp Store v2 is going through alpha testing.
  3. Ice is our file management phase, which is about providing user the way to store files (encrypted) on blockchain (storage based) along with a file system which allows them to share files / folder, transfer them to other users, stamp them to enforce off chain contracts and so on. Combining this with other protocol like Ice or even lending dApp of ours opens up new possibilities for truly out of the box dApps. We also have a Hydro Drive dApp which will allow users to access these functionalities independently as well. Ice is currently in development.
  4. Tide is our payment protocol phase, this is also completed and we are using it (along with Snowflake) to build Hydro Pay (P2P gasless transaction app) and Hydro X (Remittance app), The protocol also has the features to do interest payments, lottery, gift card, etc on chain.
  5. Mist is more on fraud detection, it analyzes the behavior pattern of an Identity by looking at all the transactions associated with all the addresses associated with a user. This protocol when done can potentially help us in analyzing the data associated with a user and assigning a risk factor to each address. This will help in devising the first ever fraud detection mechanism which can tell how likely it is that an ether address is compromised. Inside hydro ecosystem, payments done through Tide can be halted if the score is high enough and for the ethereum community in large, this can be tied to third party plugins / extensions or even exchanges to warn a user if the address risk score is high. This phase is currently getting brainstormed and architected on.
  6. Hail is our security tokenization phase and it's currently in development as well. It utilizes the features of the above phases to provide security tokenization.

bkconn1 karma

Would blockchain technology ever be appropriate for something like.. say, voting for the president of the united states?

Prodoggy2 karma

It is a possibility but is far away... mainly due to verification of the Identity of the voter. Right now, blockchain is just a bunch of addresses that have crypto and they use them to perform some function. Identity of the person using behind it is not know. For the voting to truly matter and be fair, blockchain tech needs to figure how to associate, verify an identity and ensure the person who has voted is not allowed to vote again. You also will need massive blockchain adoption or a hybrid approach to make it a possibility. So yeah, a few years away from it at the very least is what I am thinking.

DeSchildpadIsHier1 karma

[deleted]

Prodoggy2 karma

That’s a great question. So, Snowflake gives a Identity to all addresses owned by the user but doesn’t identify the user with it. Privacy legislation thus should not be a factor.

Moving forward on the roadmap, we are contemplating adding a KYC dApp for a user using ICe and Snowflake, but that again will be in control of the user themselves and confidential info would be encrypted. Still brainstorming on how to do it so that privacy of the user is never compromised though.

knobtremor1 karma

What do you say to the critics, that claim Blockchain is largely a pyramid scheme?

Prodoggy2 karma

I just tell them this quote: Hey... hey... hey bitconnect!!! haha..

In all seriousness, I just tell them that blockchain is a technology and people are free to use it as they wish to. Pyramid schemes involve money in some way or the other so do we declare money as a pyramid scheme.

Doesn't convince some but they are really wary of the tech and I also understand their frustration. In reality, all you can really do is explain to people what blockchain is and then give them time to play with that idea. People were hesitant to use online payments a while back, still are in my country (India). Digital wallets are also something which they are nervous about but in the end, if it works well and does better job than adoption will follow in it's own time. Till then, you can only inform them and keep on BUIDLing.

Dictator_XiJinPing1 karma

How do you plan to cut down the energy consumption of mining centers? Our energy is far from green

Prodoggy2 karma

I agree with this. I don't have a solution to it and I also don't like the justification that we are better than mining gold, etc, etc. I don't think I have any thoughts on how to improve this :(.

dice11111 karma

Am I the only one who read this wrong? Hail Hydro?

Prodoggy2 karma

what's wrong in that... Hail Hydro! I pitch this to our elected team to officially make this our way to greet one another, would be fun meeting people and saying that.

Raven_Crowking1 karma

What is your favorite rpg? Your favorite rpg adventure?

Prodoggy2 karma

Easy... Devil May Cry

Raven_Crowking1 karma

Have you tried any tabletop rpgs?

Prodoggy1 karma

No... haven’t yet... got any suggestions?

Raven_Crowking2 karma

Dungeon Crawl Classics. There is probably a Road Crew (public venue, open to new players) game near you.

For sci fi, Stars Without Number.

Prodoggy2 karma

Alright! I will make sure to check Dungeon Crawl Classics, like the name of it :)