Zcash Thorchain Integration Grant

Not cool @noamchom taking @ambimorph comment on a completely different thread/subject out of context to inquire about another project. Flagged as off-topic, if you have questions about Zcash Media they should be in the Zcash Media thread.

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The email to the committee following the grant termination email I received.

I am writing to express my concerns regarding the recent decisions made by the Zcash Grants Committee, specifically pertaining to the treatment of my team @NighthawkApps

Over the past year, my team has diligently contributed to the growth of Zcash, despite facing arbitrary funding handicaps. The latest decision even before meeting the Zcash <> Thorchain dev lead to terminate an in-progress grant in January '24, which was originally updated with milestones in November '23 as per ZF directives, is shocking. With 5 months remaining in our delivery time frame and 3 developers working, even the new estimates from the forum post developers are 1 year for Maya Protocol which is a fork of Thorchain. I was already in touch with Gima from Maya Protocol regarding our progress.

I’ve observed a clear bias in the approval of grants, with the committee front-running the Zcash Media grant last year and approving several others in full, while my team’s all-inclusive grant was restricted by budgetary constraint claims by the committee with a late decision. This has impacted crucial collaborations with ZSAs, the cancellation of a UI/UX hire, and the abandonment of marketing efforts, despite my personal investment in a marketing intern who significantly contributed to growing adoption following the wallet relaunch.

Was the adversity my team faced a result of my outspoken stance against expending significant community funds on marketing videos with questionable utility? Alternatively, could it be attributed to my announcement to pursue block reward funding, a move that may have challenged the status quo? My public criticism of the committee’s decisions?

Furthermore, the committee’s and forum anon’s assumptions about the cost of Nighthawk developers in India are unfounded. The cost of quality blockchain developers in India matches and even exceeds that of developers in the U.S. Treating individuals from India with such disregard contradicts the principles of fairness and inclusivity, especially considering India’s status as the world’s largest democracy and English-speaking nation.

Last year the committee member attacked my team’s Q1 report, coupled with threats of future funding denial was concerning. The rejection of the Nighthawk Wallet maintenance and the cancellation of our in-progress grant before Zeboot and before any scheduled meeting only add to the frustrations. The committee rejected the Nighthawk Wallet maintenance while approving Ycash wallet maintenance without any budgetary constraints before Zcon4. This 3-term majority committee’s actions appear to favor certain projects over others, undermining the principles of fairness and equal opportunity.

I believe in open dialogue and transparency. If there were concerns about the updated timelines for the Thorchain grant last November, a public discussion could have been initiated instead of abruptly terminating the grant, conveniently following the committee elections. This committee’s failure to follow up on our communication on Signal this week has forced me to bring these issues to the public domain. I was looking forward to the meeting of @vamsi with the committee.

I urge the Zcash Grants Committee to reevaluate its decisions, ensure transparency, and treat all grant recipients fairly. The privacy-preserving users we aim to serve deserve a committee that prioritizes accountability and inclusivity.

Lastly, as we navigate these challenges, I seek clarity on whether the committee wishes to continue our collaboration in running the lightwalletd infrastructure post its service expiry in May 2024.


https://x.com/aiyadt/status/1751147910748926226

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The cloud vps market is very competitive now. I don’t know how much the grant for lightwalletd is but as a data point, zcash-infra has 8 instances around the world for less than 6000 USD yearly.

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In 2021, Zcash x Thorchain integration was supposed to happen in 2022. In 2023 there has been no update to the community here or on @NighthawkApps X account.

Just sharing my 2 zats here. I think this is the reason for the community to not be excited by it anymore. Additionally, the Thorchain X account, the largest public Thorchain social media account, is openly opposed to Zcash.

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I personally think Maya was the effectively required transformation for this, and it was noted aiyadt wanted to discuss Maya with ZCG.

To tackle this from that angle, is that not a failure of this grant specifically for TC?

Edit: To clarify, as this came off a bit more argumentative/speculative than I desired, I was mainly trying to highlight the further cause for concern around the status of this grant and comment it doesn’t appear just about communication timelines.

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It’s unfortunate to see a developer of your caliber continue resorting to belittling other projects in the ecosystem and spreading misinformation. I want to clarify that the public infrastructure portion for the Nighthawk team grant, which you seem to question, was carefully discussed and implemented based on the recommendations of the @LightCli_WG in 2022. Our decision to host the lightwalletd infra on globally distributed instances, on a Kubernetes cluster was driven by the necessity to meet the scaling requirements and to explore novel methods for wallet syncing improvements that are not met by running a “cloud vps”. This approach was thoroughly vetted and agreed upon to efficiently manage the increased load on our servers.

Regarding costs, the average k8s cluster yearly expenses quoted by our team are well within industry standards. @NighthawkApps has diligently continued to operate and maintain the public infrastructure, demonstrating our commitment to the public infrastructure’s success. It’s also disappointing that despite our efforts to provide transparency, the @ZcashGrants committee did not fully recognize the essential expenses related to DevOps, team operational, and hardware costs in our grant expense breakdown in Feb’23.

Please check the last update shared in Dec’23 following the grant milestone update on the Zcash Grant platform.

Thorchain X accounts don’t influence which chains are approved on TC. My community-building efforts have generated significant interest among validators to support adding transparent ZEC to Thorchain. It’s the node runners who vote, not end users.


No, the TC work is ongoing, but our progress was halted upon discovering the rug pulled by the ZCG. Once TC work is completed, there’s a process involving audits, testing, before going live on mainnet. And with follow-up changes in ancillary code, ZEC can be added to the Maya Protocol(being a fork of TC)

Either @BrunchTime was unaware of the scheduled meeting, or he chose to mislead the community by claiming there was ‘no meaningful response.’ from my end, based on the shared communications on X, there was indeed a plan to meet. However, given the influx of TOR lightwalletd, Maya grant applications in the last few weeks, shedding light on the operation of the @ZcashGrants committee. Additionally, it’s worth noting that the committee conveniently opted to exclude the integration of Nym into wallets, removing Nighthawk Wallet and Zingo! as a recipient of the work of integrating Nym, instead choosing to fund the development of the Nym framework for mobile. However, this decision overlooks the immediate utility for Zcash users.

Considering my experience with the committee and their funding decisions, it’s evident what’s happening, especially given the timing of rejecting this grant and application of another. It’s unfortunate how centralized decision-making has contributed to Zcash’s challenges in the privacy coin space.

The fact that you responded to Dan, who is not even on ZCG, is not particularly relevant, when you did not respond to actual ZCG members at all who sent several messages on different channels over many days. Telling Dan you intend to arrange a meeting and then not actually following up with the committee—not even a single text—is not a “meaningful response”.

As I said earlier, posting your correspondence with him publicly without his permission was not only a breach of his trust, but was a selective choice to support your narrative by omitting the communication with ZCG itself, making it look to outsiders the way you want it to look.

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Then sounds like there was no meaningful response if you are the only one who knew this purported plan.

I find it encouraging that an under-performing project gets its funding pulled - it speaks well of ZCG & sets a clear precedent.

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i do as well. and there are several or many more that should get funding pulled as the vision gets more focused on money and core use cases. it’s not just underperformance that is a problem. it’s funding for development that has little to nothing to do with zcash as money that has been a problem -

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Maybe you missed the minor grant for more lightwalletd servers.

I received 6000 usd for a year. It was for running 2 instances but I could stretch it to 8.

They are working fine: https://status.zcash-infra.com/

And users can pick any of them based on their location.

I am not sure what misinformation you accuse me of.

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It is clear that you are envious that hanh has applied for the grants for Maya integration. This could have been easily avoided had you and your team been seriously working and communicating your work progress with ZCG and the community. I even have my doubts that some engineers or all in your team are working part time on this project while having full day time jobs to attend to?

I further propose that if any further work should be given to nighthawk team, some kind of remote employee monitoring should be made use of.