Hey Zcash Zeal!
This weeks meeting was a big one, we had 7 outstanding proposals to review and we were able to approve funding for 4 proposals that will benefit the Zcash community!
The proposals funded are:
Zcash Cold Wallet
This will allow completely secure Zcash transactions on a offline non-internet connected computer:
Zcash Block Explorer
Zcash has lots of unique features like shielded pools, payment disclosure, viewing keys that 99% of the block explorers out there don’t support. This open-source codebase will lay the foundation for Zcash specific features to be included in any block explorer:
Boostrapping ZEC liquidity on Binance Smart Chain
A proposal to add Zcash/renZEC liquidity to the DeFi space.
ZecPages Testnet Faucet
If you have been on the forums or Discord for long you will see from time to time developers asking for testnet Zcash to work with. Michael from ZecPages has proposed to maintain a high-availability testnet faucet at: https://faucet.zecpages.com/
And we still have few more open proposals for consideration that we will review next meeting, congratulations to all the recipients!
Meeting minutes are below:
ZOMG Zoom Meeting: March 16, 2021
[Minutes taken by Danika]
Danika Delano acting as notetaker
- Discuss 3-4 grants that have been outstanding
- Discuss Chris’ draft of the short term / long term strategy document that we’ve discussed before
- Discuss how to follow up on grantees (milestones, quality)
- Try to cover newer grants
- The members discussed how to prioritize their time with many items to discuss in an hour. All members agreed that it was necessary to discuss Chris’s governance document before posting and to make the grants a priority to discuss during the meeting (especially those that have been pending).
- Hudson summarized where they left off and informed everyone that the applicant addressed a few things on the forum. Holmes said that he had a question about a security audit but the person is engaging in a positive way so the audit should not be a blocker.
- One member said that they were responsive in the forum, are reusing code from another project (hence the low cost), they are on board with finding an auditor, and the committee can work with him to find a security auditor. ML & Chris gave recommendations for security auditors and volunteered to follow up with the applicant with their suggestions.
- ML pointed out that the budget doesn’t cover an audit and Chris suggested they apply for an addendum with a security audit.
- Holmes and Hudson voiced that they want to fund this person soon because it’s a small and good project and they don’t want the audit to block ZOMG funding them. All members agreed.
- ML asked if they wanted continuity with the same ZOMG representative responding to the forum and all members agreed that it was okay to change who responds as long as there was communication amongst members.
- Shawn volunteered to work with Hudson to draft a response and post on the forum.
Multisig Wallet for Zcash
- Holmes summarized that it is still pending based on their reply so they could close it for now and asked to resubmit or wait for a response. ML voiced that applicants should come to ZOMG instead of ZOMG monitoring. Chris commented that as long as they haven’t gone blank, they should not need to resubmit. Holmes also spoke from an applicants perspective that it would be annoying as a submitter if his proposal was closed suddenly.
- The applicant agreed to close the proposal for now on the forum.
Zcash Block Explorer
- Holmes shared that he did a voice call with the applicant and posted a summary on the forum. To answer ZOMG’s questions: 1) They have a back-end person that will work on it, so it is not a distraction from other projects 2) They want to add Zcash features that don’t exist in block explorers (payment disclosures and viewing keys are examples), as there is no web resources that support these features and Blockchair is not very private.
- Shawn shared that he is in favor of the proposal and pointed to viewing keys as being an exciting feature.
- ML disclosed that she was not hot on the proposal initially but after hearing Shawn’s explanation, she is changing her vote to “yes” based on the value proposition.
- Chris said that he values Shawn’s insight and voted in favor especially because it is a Nighthawk project.
- Shawn reiterated that Zcash specific resources and open sourcing code is a plus and Chris agreed that he wants to support folks that are becoming more committed to Zcash as long as they continue to prove that what they deliver is positive.
- Holmes was also in favor and volunteered to approve.
Zcash Weekly News Show
- Shawn reminded the members that he chose to abstain from voting based on his history with one of the applicants on the forum and the committee was interested in Chris’s perspective.
- Chris continued to warn that most proposals would be marketing. Chris pointed out that the zebra was a good way to communicate with zcash & summarized that it looks like they are going to create an avatar. Chris noted that James Joseph’s approach makes him question his ability to be a spokesperson, especially for the lump of money but he was impressed by how thorough the materials were. He also noted that he did not like the money grab component and the incentive was coming from a muddled place.
- ML mentioned they could have them do 1-2 episodes to try it out but it seems too high of a risk, particularly the messages, and if the fact that they have had to ban an applicant shows how disruptive he can be.
- Hudson said that if James Joseph played a smaller role, he might think differently but it is too problematic and risky based on experience on the forum.
- Chris also voted no, especially since it is the biggest grant to date.
- Holmes agreed that they are making the right decision to decline but he feels bad for the other folks in the project so he would want to encourage them to apply individually.
- Shawn pointed out that, based on comments on telegram, James Joseph is the primary driver of the project.
- Hudson volunteered to write up a draft for the rejection and post on the forum and assured the other members that he is okay with putting it out there, even with his recent interactions with the applicant.
Bootstrapping liquidity for renZEC on Binance Smart Chain
- All members unanimously approved.
ZECpages Testnet Faucet - App development + 1 year infra
- All members unanimously approved.
A lightweight web wallet for Zcash
- All members agreed to let the conversation on the forum marinate before discussing thoroughly.
Short-Term / Long-term Strategy Document
- Chris summarized the document he drafted as a document to prepare future ZOMG governance structure. He shared that moving ZOMG outside of ZF would make Zcash more resilient. Additionally, being an independent body is smart.
- ML asked about the decentralization approach and pointed out that ZF and ECC not being coordinated enough has held ZOMG back. She asked how having more decentralization benefits Zcash.
- Chris responded that two strong, centralized entities crowd up the ecosystem. ECC and ZF are important to Zcash so not to discount the value add but someone could make the argument it is one big institution and security is the risk of a mega-entity and the SEC wants to see decentralization. He said that ZOMG is temporarily nested under ZF for convenience but if one looks at Decred, it looks more resilient. He asked, as regulatory and as block rewards diminish, how do we ensure people are committed to success? It has to come from the community and has to come from the bottom up. He used the analogy of cathedrals (look to cathedral to ask what to do) vs bazaars (no central authority that dictates things) to demonstrate his point.
- ML pointed out that Decred had core followers and that can fade away.
- Chris commented that Decred and Zcash are not far apart but Zcash has a reliance on centralized entities. It will be painful to decentralize, but necessary.
- Holmes added that being unplugged from a US-based infrastructure like a non-profit seems desirable and consistent with Zcash being a badass currency that gives users autonomy (it fits with who we are). Holmes said that they want to be that project in that space. Chris agreed and said that the leading competitor is more like that (Monero).
- Shawn pointed out that they went from T-addresses to Z-addresses and being separate is a good long term goal but it may take all 4 ZOMG cycles for that to actually happen. He suggested they work toward constructing something for the community to vote on but it is unlikely in the scope of the next 3 cycles. He agreed with Chris on the optics and said 3 pillars with checks and balances is a good thing but the question is when and how.
- ML commented that the document was too open and it would be more effective to have some pros and cons so all discussion can focus on good questions. The alternative is to post and see what everyone thinks.
- Chris replied that his hope is to leave it as open ended as possible but for compensation for future members, current members should weigh in as they are the experts of what the workload is. He added that it is basically a half-time job if members do everything right but the goals for 2022 should be more open ended.
- Shawn said that they can preface any statement by saying “this is the current ZOMG memberships’ perspective on these questions, not a dictation of how things should happen. After being in the seat, we have realized these are important issues to be addressed.” He agreed that future ZOMG members should know what to expect in terms of responsibilities and time commitment.
- Chris suggested posting the questions and allowing everyone to individually respond. All members agreed.
Milestone Follow Up
- ML brought up that there needs to be a better system to evaluate if applicants meet expectations for milestones.
- Holmes said ZOMG currently does not have enough time to support long-term projects so they need to either build capacity for follow-up in ZF, fund half-time ZOMG members, or have a grant to support this need.
- Shawn reminded the committee that if they do due diligence upfront, then when grantees request milestone payment, ZOMG is flagged and it helps come up with a set point in time when ZOMG can do the second step of diligence.
- ML commented that some of the milestones are awarded at the beginning and some are at the end and some are awarded after a phase is finished. Structurally, they can solve the problem with a person that they hire and they probably have enough work for someone. Shawn agreed that there is enough work for someone to be an accountability expert.
- Chris suggested the following options: 1) An independent auditor could be a 6th ZOMG seat and they would run for a specific auditor role 2) If ZOMG can give grants to themselves, they could fund a role.
- ML did not like having a 6th role because it might make it look like they are a 2nd class citizen. Chris replied that he viewed them as 1st class but is not committed one way or another.
- ML said she could write to JD as the work could be administrative.
- Shawn agreed that they could take minutes off Danika’s plate and they could be given an official ZOMG name or handle. They could be the official response when replying to grantees. An auditor is a hirer level scope than he was thinking. Shawn brought up that they are examining being more proactive in finding solid projects to fund by putting up a bounty so they could put up a bounty for this role. Chris and Holmes agreed and Chris suggested it is a quarterly bounty. Shawn added that the grant platform has RFPs so that is how they can structure posting the job.
- Holmes commented that there is technical follow up to see if what the person made works (for milestones).
- All agreed that they need someone to fill the need/spot but question is how.
- Holmes suggested that someone draft a proposed bounty post.
Grant Platform Template
- Holmes and ML brought up that they should make a draft of a new template for grant platform edits.
- Holmes agreed to follow up with ML before reaching out to Daniel Re: edits to the grant .io platform
Summary of Action Items:
- Approve Cold Wallet (Shawn)
- Follow up with Multisig Wallet (Holmes)
- Approve Zcash Block Explorer (Holmes)
- Decline Zcash Weekly News Show (Hudson)
- Approve Bootstrapping liquidity for renZEC on Binance Smart Chain (ML)
- Approve ZECpages Testnet Faucet - App development + 1 year infra (Chris)
- Post Short-Term / Long-term Strategy Document (Chris) for all members to respond individually (all ZOMG members)
- Follow up with Daniel on Grants platform (Holmes & ML)