ECC Zeboot Decisions and Timelines + Opening Presentation

Hi everyone.

This weekend, @adjychris posted a great summary that captures a summary of the event. This thread outlines the decisions that were made and our next steps. I’ll also post a few slides from my opening and the rationale for these decisions.

Decisions:

Work toward the full Zcash stack vision presented, by prioritizing based on expected and actual user adoption. Focus first on the experience for “first 100” power users who are in a position to onboard others adjacent to them.

zcashd:

  • We will reach out to the Zcash Foundation about working together to find a path toward deprecation through zebrad with a target of 2024. Owner: @daira
  • We will not add additional major features (such as ZSAs) into zcashd
  • We may make minor updates to zcashd, depending on the identified path

Rationale: zcashd contains legacy code that hampers our ability to deliver more, faster. It is also duplicative with zebrad. By working with the foundation to add wallet support to zebrad and obtain parity, we can retire the code base, more easily onboard new developers and deliver more.

PoS:

  • We have not yet reaffirmed commitment to PoS as our first priority. Our decision will be based on how much time it will take to get to a release against other priorities. The next step is to determine a realistic timeline, to be done within the next two weeks. Owner: @daira. Supporting: @ebfull, @str4d and @nuttycom.

Rationale: We are emphasizing the delivery of capabilities that will drive adoption in the short to mid-term. With recent work, including Daira’s work on Crosslink2, and focused effort from the ECC team, we can see a path to hybrid PoW/PoS on testnet within months. But we need to factor in a number of other considerations including resource availability. If we do have a path that is months, rather than years, I’m personally in full support as it will help us unlock significant UX benefits for ZEC users.

Other R&D:

  • Based on the PoS timeline and user research, we will evaluate other potential areas for R&D. Near term candidates include: liberated payments, DEX support, bridge support. Owners: @daira and @joshs

Rationale: the team and community discussed options and weighted potential impact against complexity, cost and time. Those ideas that had the highest near term potential impact with the lowest complexity and time were weighted higher. We are working to further validate in conjunction with the Zashi team and based upon estimates for zcashd retirement and PoS work.

Zashi wallet:

Rationale: Zashi will be our platform to deliver strong UX with rich features. We still have some work to do to finish Orchard support, background sync, Android feature parity, and a few UI changes. We need to get this to the market as quickly as possible, and iterate.

  • We will conduct user research to validation hypothesis about feature prioritization. Near term candidates include: messaging app, liberated payments, DEX support, debit/gift card integration. Owner: Andrea

Rationale: The rationale under R&D is similar here based on the weight of potential impact against complexity and time. We also discussed rolling out a Zashi family of products that interoperate but with a narrow set of features. Examples include software that includes advanced features and integrates with hardware, and a standalone messaging app on top of Zcash with liberated payments for onboarding new users.

Other:

  • NU6, governance and funding: Begin conversations with the community in February. Owner: @paulbrigner
  • Release a new consolidated ECC roadmap in February. Owner: @joshs
  • Zeboot: We will do it again, no later than this fall, but will need to rename it.:wink: Owner: Janie

I’ll post a summary of the first session below, with a bit of color on how we thought about users of early ECC products.

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We kicked off the ECC + Community sessions with a Vision for Zcash, led me.

Our mission at ECC

With the purpose to deliver products that support these things.

This is the goal. I spoke about how I would dance with my daughter in the living room of our home. It was our time, freely expressed, and not the business of people walking by. Privacy is like that. It’s worth protecting and should be as easy as it is to close our curtains. Those are the products I want to build.

To get there, we need broad adoption.

What do people want and what stands in our way?

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I made the following hypothesis.

Defining storage use cases as

And access as

I talked through the components of an idea for a full Zcash stack.

Then touching on payments use cases

and others. These were the basis for the rankings we did (some where changed based on the conversations that week.)

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After setting the stage, I stressed urgency.

The experience has to get better in order to bring in new users. Additionally, we need to get our code out into the reaches of the world so that it cannot be stopped but increasingly hostile government actors. We cannot assume the freedoms we have today will continue.

My argument was, and still continues to be, that we need shielded storage and open access, like yesterday. What changed a bit last week, was my thinking on our prioritization, based on @peacemonger’s research and our work together on users and use cases. The voices in the community were quite clear.

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Some of @peacemonger’s initial findings were presented shortly after my opening. She has spent countless hours collecting feedback and conducting interviews with hundreds of Zcash users. ZEC holders were far less inclined to recommend ZEC to a friend than people who actively used ZEC.

This tied nicely into my following workshop on identifying ECC’s target user. We started here:

Where Zcashers are on the curve today, and where we need to push to. We talked about how, which fed into our conversations on features, their prioritization and R&D focus areas.

I shared this tweet, which very much was inline with what we discussed.

Another attendee brought up communities of interest, with dense membership that is likely to share and onboard others.

Where we landed was focusing our efforts to drive adoption for the “first 100 power users,” who will make use of the products and who sit adjacent to other potential visionaries and pragmatists. The hypothesis is that if these users LOVE the products and experience, they will naturally onboard others and we’ll capture the network effects necessary to cross the chasm.

I hope that helps give you all a picture of our time together, what drove conversations and where we’re both building and exploring.

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thanks for sharing this with us @joshs

if not POS, what is the first priority for ECC in the comming weeks and months?

i know some in here don’t want to hear that, but onboarding others is way easier when the price is not constantly going down. what we need is reducing the sell pressure and exchange the miners with ZEC zodlers and stakers. crypto currencies in their current form are mainly speculation assets, and there is nothing wrong with that, because this get’s people involved and they start to use and play around in the ecosystem.

i am and was super excited about Zcash since day number one, and shared it with many others around me. what i can tell you now is that nobody of them feels comfortable when they hear the word Zcash, they all lost money and also the interest in exploring it further. (some of them even hate me for getting them into ZEC)

i won’t onboard anyone until the market conditions are going to change, and i will also not add a single coin to my portfolio.

some of you might disagree with me here, BUT price plays a crucial role and this was not taken enough care of in the past. we built something that did not add a lot of value to ZEC, it mainly benefited other projects and those that funded it, lost a lot of money. (many if not most of them will never return)

so how will we onboard new members under this condition?

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Love this. Makes perfect sense. Another step in the right direction.

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You hire market makers. @Dodger worked at a bunch of banks — he could use his network.

Not to mention, Grayscale could promote it more, Cathie Wood could buy in. Lots and lots of sidelined money out there. It’s just a matter of selling the narrative to the proper parties.

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I agree with your opinion. Now is the time when I feel embarrassed in front of all the large audience of people I have already attracted people. Including my family, my closest friends, and a wide range of acquaintances from hairdresser to gastroenterologist. Under these circumstances, when I myself try not to meet these people, when I feel immense psychological pressure and literally physically sick, I am not ready to actively attract new people, knowing that the price can fall further and there are no brakes. I know that the price could go even lower. It’s not even trying to bounce back from $20. I’m actually seeing this massive pressure and it’s getting harder and harder for me to trust these reports that a beautiful future is soon ahead of us. I just don’t see where it’s coming soon. I know that price is simply supply and demand, but I don’t see how we are creating demand here while the price is still falling because the right tokenomics are not in place.
PoS tokenomics is able to stop the price falling now and it is able to attract new people this year and next year. PoS in 2026 no one will need it anymore because the market will go into a dive again. I’ll be honest, I’m mentally exhausted myself. PoS probably won’t stop me in 2026 from exiting this asset completely, provided we don’t see a new ATH in 2025. I’m already tired of being a long term investor, seeing how all the other assets from 2017 would have led me to success had I stayed in them. 100 people are not capable of attracting millions of people. ZEC at $1000 per coin is capable.

If I could influence it, I would have launched PoS already in November in version 0.0.0.1, because the best is the enemy of the good and Zcash is constantly late to the party due to not getting out at the right time. An example of this is the NFT collection.

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before PoS we need a very stable and trustworthy fullnode wallet…
it should be easy click, not just for the regular users but especially for enterprise.
a reputable company will not allocate 5 people to work full time just to keep up with Zcash Bugs, they need minimal interaction.
making a bad transition to PoS may be much more harmful than a slow transition
thats why i personally think, we should finish the transition to Zebra first before doing anything =[

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Brave, Filecoin & Zcash
:In this case, ECC, which recently highlighted plans to make Zcash more decentralised and secure, will work with Brave to integrate shielded transactions with the Brave browser’s built-in crypto wallet. This will allow users to benefit from private transactions when they store, send, and receive ZEC and other cryptocurrencies."

What is the status of this partnership / project ?
Does it fit anyway in ECC Zeboot and Timesline?

source: Guest Post by TheBitTimes: Brave partners with Electric Coin and Filecoin to advance Web3 privacy | CoinMarketCap

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Update coming soon

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i am sure that everyone in here, including myself would love to hear @joshs @Dodger @aquietinvestor personal opinion on this matter. how can we really fix this problem?

i personally don’t think that the halvening, the brave integration or even the ZSA implementation (that is as far away as hybrid POS) is fixing this anytime soon. ZEC was always legging behind others in a bullrun, but this time the only direction is downwards.

there is also NO bullish momentum, even the social media accounts of ECC, Foundation and ZCG that could attract some new/old members are boring and show NO excitement for Zcash.

So seriously, how are we going to fix this and don’t loose the remaining community that has already lost huge on their investment?

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Strong agreement here. Particularly the critique of the mindset some hold in our community, thinking that their anecdotal onboarding of new Zcashers is how we’ll reach the mainstream. Zcash needs reason(s) to go viral; not a few dozen die-hards trying to convince their barista, their cousin, or their friends to accept ZEC for some novel transaction.

Zcash needs virality!
(Hint: this means headlines, exchange listings, tons of relatable memes, ZEC number go up)
Network usage will pick up, after virality. not before it

Part of the problem here, is that the ZF and ECC designed themselves to uncapable of showing excitement, promotion, investor confidence, or anything else that is necessary to make new crypto participants get the idea of hope with investing in Zcash.

The Non-Profit design seems to be one of the albatrosses around Zcash’s neck. Non-Profit has quite literally turned out as the best description for any of us to ever buy and hold ZEC :frowning:

Neither of the leaders of ZF or ECC have any interest in taking actions to mitigate the selling pressure that they regularly apply to the ZEC-USD market.

As he mentions above, timing is critical and it isn’t on our side!
A perfect transition to PoS in 2028 would likely coincide with Zcash having been completely forgotten by the crypto ecosystem in 2026.

To survive, we need relevant, value adding products/ upgrades as soon as possible. Look at the example of how Halo was so badly delayed and the messaging never lined up, the market outcome was a collective shoulder shrug.

This time around, we need the opposite. Zcash needs impactful upgrades in a timely manner. We can’t afford for another upgrade cycle to experience 6 calendar delays :frowning:

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So many thoughtful responses and great questions here.

It’s disconcerting that Zcash doesn’t even correlate with Bitcoin anymore (i.e., Bitcoin up +127%, Zcash down -56% over the last 12 months).

I agree that @artkor’s argument regarding PoS makes sense. Today, Zcash gets sold, not bought and we must change this ASAP.

I think now we just have to “ride this out” while @joshs and others take the necessary steps to fundamentally change the trajectory of Zcash. I am rooting for them and will continue to hold despite the likelihood Zcash will participate in this bull market.

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It is very absurd to attribute the problem to POW. The coins sold by miners in the daily transaction volume are only 1/1000.

its basic supply and demand. Not too much more to think about. There is more sellers than buyers. Its the miners, the dev fund, and people just giving up. Its that simple. Most transactions are fake/round tripping. If the miners and orgs were to stop selling for a few months. Thats the only way to really know if they are the proverbial straw breaking the camels back. But its more likely than not.

Just as important, ZEC’s strategy (pre ZeBoot) to be a fiat alternative is in reality a sell ZEC vision. Why? Because in the ZEC as fiat alternative vision, every person that buys or owns ZEC needs to sell it to convert into fiat. So I believe this creates more net sellers than buyers because people freak out when they believe its a currency and it goes down by 10% in a day. So we constantly lose buyers and we are left with more sellers than buyers… Most people are trying to get away from weak currencies, not run to them. We need to create a buy & hold ZEC (not use it as fiat) as the primary use case. Something like 80% of Bitcoin is buy & hold. Bitcoin has given its community a vision and reasons to buy & hold. That is what creates the value.

Likewise, we need to give people a vision and reasons to buy and hold (not sell) ZEC.

Reason 1 - 21m cap. Currently the issuance is just too high. So even though we have this longer term positive supply dynamic coming up. There is still too much issuance. I can guarantee you if we were in the oppositive situation (demand was greater than supply or we were burning coins as opposed to creating them), the price would increase by a lot. We need to make it clear its not a “community” decision to change the 21m cap, the community already voted. It’s over. It is carved in stone. If we cant give ZEC holders the confidence the 21m cap will hold up, its a problem. We need to let people know, if you want a coin with different attributes, create a ZSA/UDA. Do not increase the issuance rate under any scenario.

Reason 2 - If we can develop ZSAs, stablecoins, and create an ecosystem that charges transaction fees, or hold real world assets as collateral (for stablecoins), we can start to see an ecosystem evolve that is more like Ethereums. In this case, staking with yield to ZEC holders becomes are very solid reason to stake and hold. The etheruem fee structure is driving so much creativity and decentralized development its truly amazing. Its what we need. Free transactions does not result in decentralized development. It results in implosion. Gas/Fees is a buy into ZEC ecoystem strategy.

Reason 3. ZEC as a collateral token is a buy and hold ZEC ecosystem. ZEC as a staking token is a buy and hold ZEC ecosystem. So we need to develop reasons to buy & hold ZEC, not sell it. Store of value almost infinitely more important than privacy. Privacy just makes money as a store of value better. So we need to move beyond privacy and not think in either or terms. There are many critical factors more important than privacy. So we need to improve and acknowledge those critical areas we are brushing off as not important. Focus on things that give ZEC value of which privacy is one of many factors. The obvious ones to me are transaction fees being a catalyst for decentralized development, stablecoins for day to day transactions, ZSAs, NFTs, and processing all types of transactions. Keep the customer in the Zcash ecosystem.

Reason 4. Privacy. If we can develop an ecosystem people can trust where the store of value is held as the highest priority, then privacy starts to become very important. But privacy is worthless without store of value. It doesnt work in reverse.

I’m sure that we can come up with more reasons. But, to think privacy is the end game is not going to do it.

So, POW is one problem causing price declines given everything else. But, its clearly not the only reason. ZEC as a product has not demonstrated its a store of value. Reduced selling related to issuance will certainly help.

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I was under the impression that miners get 80% of the issuance and they sell all of it? Where does your 1/1000 number come from?

Can someone check my napkin math here? Free2z I want to do some more calculations based on that.

At $100/ZEC, miners would get ~$105,000,000/yr worth of ZEC at current issuance?

he is saying $20m-$30m of ZEC trades per day. So the miners are selling 1/1000 of this amount. His math is off because the real transactions are probably a lot lower than the headline trading volume because of round tripping and fake trades. Who knows how much. Whatever it is, the new issuance is adding to the supply every day and there are not enough new buyers to absorb the new supply. Its the marginal buyer/seller that sets the price.

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The overall reported trading volume says little to nothing about overall supply and demand. A trade by definition is a match between a buy and a sell. If I buy ZEC to send it to someone and they sell it, it’s a wash - but it represents volume, liquidity, and usage. Trading is good.

I think the overall tokenomics could benefit from adjustment. The decision to roughly copy bitcoin issuance was extremely early and arbitrary but has endured. I would be open to more dynamic mechanisms of issuance. The ideal would be a reliable, stable token that tended to gradually get more valuable over time.