Hi everyone! I’m excited to inform y’all I’m nominating myself as a ZCG candidate.
TLDR; My goal as a ZCG member would be to help ZCG become more efficient at assessing grants while encouraging all members to embrace and fund more teams and ideas that can have a long term impact within the Zcash ecosystem. Zemo and Zcash Media are both examples where ZCG has ultimately lost an opportunity of supporting/encouraging/fostering amazing teams within the Zcash ecosystem. We don’t get these opportunities often so it hurts when we get it wrong. I hope I can help better outcomes in both of these areas.
My name is Matthew and I live in Australia with my wife and 2 young kids. I’m a software engineer in the security space. My day job is working on a C++ implementation of the SSL and TLS protocol (i.e. the “S” in HTTPS). I sit next to a cryptographer who I work closely with in our team. I’ve been professionally writing code for over 17years but have been working in IT for longer. I have a very broad knowledge of programming languages and frameworks. I’ve worked in a review committee before with 7 members. I’ve also been an applicant to committees before, with dozens of separate submissions, so I empathise with applicants. I hope to draw upon all these things as a ZCG member.
Examples of my participation in Zcash ecosystem.
Holding ZF, ECC, ZCG accountable when required and advocating for change.
Drive adoption and awareness of Zcash in the real world.
I believe ZCG needs to invest in more big projects/ideas/teams and work towards building long term contributors and teams that can learn, evolve, and scale. As Zcash scales so will the number of contributors and the size of the teams we require to grow, develop, and support Zcash. The sooner we start fostering large projects and larger teams the easier it’ll be for the Zcash ecosystem to scale Zcash to a billion users. Without a more vibrant ecosystem with many large teams there is little hope of Zcash ever reaching a billion users.
Unfortunately the following grants were rejected that I fought to be approved:
I think the rejection of Zemo and Zcash Media grants are two examples where we are pushing new teams away from the Zcash ecosystem. Long term if we keep pushing these projects and teams away from Zcash we are going to find it hard to scale Zcash and its applications to meet the needs and demands of its users as Zcash grows.
Fortunately I have been unable to find any grants that were approved that I would have fought to be rejected. Therefore I think ZCG could have approved more grants than they did in the past 12months.
I also think, as stated by others, ZCG can and should make decisions quicker. From an outsider’s perspective it appears there are 5 areas ZCG might be able to improve.
- Approve grants out of cycle. There are a few grants that don’t need discussion.
- Sometimes grants appear to be “pushed” to the next call when a decision can’t be made. I’ve worked in a review committee before and have seen this happen when too many members sit on the fence. Some committees won’t allow this and will force a vote. The answer is probably somewhere in between. Holding onto grants for too long adds burden to the committee and prolongs the process for the applicants.
- We need open 2way communication between ZCG and other organisations (e.g. ECC and ZF). Currently, based on the minutes, it feels like sometimes the ZCG have to almost “vote” on whether or not they should ask someone at ECC for some info/opinion.
- It’s probably not a constructive use of the ZCG or applicant’s time to debate finer details of an application. Assuming the ZCG member and application are both equal experts in said field then statistically the ZCG member is going to be wrong 50% of the time. It’s healthy and advisable to make suggestions to the applicant since the applicant may simply agree with the conclusions of the ZCG member. But I find it hard to imagine a scenario where the Zcash ecosystem benefits when an expert ZCG member and an expert applicant disagree on something but the applicant feels forced to jump through hoops because a ZCG member wants something a specific way.
- Some of the issues in (4) probably stem from the fact the milestone system discourages pivoting. There is probably a lot of hesitation from both ZCG and the applicants to lock in the details as it’ll be painful to change in the future. Sometimes we should simply fund people and groups for the amount they ask and let them create value for the Zcash ecosystem by allowing them to pivot and innovate. There’s a good chance we will see better outcomes when we let the experts be experts!
|Proposal Title||Approved / Rejected / Withdrawn||My likely vote|
|Eternity GameFi Protocol||Rejected||Reject|
|Crypto ATMS and Marketplace||Rejected||Reject|
|PredictRAM Web 3.0||Rejected||Reject|
|Tokidoki as Full-time Moderator and Technical Writer||Rejected||Fund the individual|
|Bilingual Crypto and ZCash educational content & Podcast||Rejected||Reject|
|Zemo - Your Web3 Inbox||Application Withdrawn||Approve|
|Shielded Multi Signature Transactions||Rejected||Fund the individual|
|Zcash Media Launch Plan||Approved||Approve|
|Web Education 3.0||Application Withdrawn|
|Ziggurat 2.0: Pre-flight testing for the Zebra RC, CI support, a GUI, and more||Approved||Approve|
|Zcash Promotional Song & Music Video||Approved||Approve|
|Filmmaker Pitch for Social Media Advertising Films and Photography||Rejected||Reject|
|Tao: Asynchronous Payment channels for stable coins||Rejected||Reject|
|Zcash Family Road Trip||Rejected||Reject|
|Crypto Learn Lab: An IRL Home for the Zcash Community
|Sponsored Turkish Newsletter and Marketing Campaign||Rejected|
|Greek Community Building - CryptoBlocks||Rejected|
|ZGo - The Zcash Register||Approved||Approve|
|Zcash Ecosystem Security Lead||Approved||Approve|
|Zecwallet and Orchard||Approved||Approve|
|Community Note Taker||Approved||Approve|
|Design SalesUnit Software on zCash||Rejected||Reject|
|Zcash Media 2022-2023 Grant||Application Withdrawn||Approve|
|Scalable Deployment of Zcach FPGA accelerator||Rejected||Reject|
|Zcon3 Viewing Party in Kampala, Uganda.||Rejected|
|DeFi for ZEC: Shielded ZEC DeFi wallet for Ethereum, BSC and Polygon||Rejected||Pivot?|
|CodeUp Blockchain Festival - Nigeria 2022||Rejected|
|Arti, a project to rewrite Tor in Rust: onion services and beyond!||Approved||Approve|
|YWallet & Warp Sync||Approved||Approve|
|Qenetex is currently a Meta cross-chain DeFi exchange||Rejected||Reject|
|ZK Bootcamp & Hackathon (event)||Rejected|
|Private Data Exchange||Rejected||Reject|
|Telegram Anti Scam Bot - Grant Request||Approved||Approve|
|ToDeFi: Torino Decentralized Finance Conference||Approved||Approve|
|Zcash Node - RFP for portable device for running Zcashd nodes - by Stagnum||Approved||Approve|
|Enhance The Zcash Wikipedia Page||Application Withdrawn|
|Subgroup membership testing on elliptic curves via the Tate pairing||Rejected||Reject|
|Orchard and UA for YWallet||Approved||Approve|
|Integrating BloodFuse on Zcash||Rejected||Reject|
|Creating HQ content for UKR/RUS Auditory + Creating strong community||Rejected||Reject|
|CryptoMondays DAO Partnership||Approved||Approve|
|Zcash and the Agri Value chain: Blockchain Workshop for African Farmers in Ghana||Rejected||Reject|
|The Zcash Podcast on the Digital Cash Network||Approved||Approve|
|Zcash Zodler Campaign||Rejected||Reject|
Note: Ive left the items blank that involve referring the applicant to the global ambassador program.