1. Tell us about your background, and how you ended up in $CRYPTO.
“I was briefly interested in cryptography when I was in high school, around year 2000, but never found enough patience to learn the basics. When I heard about Bitcoin’s price rise from the mainstream media in 2014, I transitioned from stock speculation to crypto. As I kept studying the underlying principles of decentralization and consensus, I was being increasingly drawn-in and never stopped investing since. I was lucky enough my MtGox account did not get verified in time though.
My technical background comes from a 5-year experience in a multinational government-related IT company, where one of my tasks was to eavesdrop user communication on SSL-encrypted channels with infrastructure administrators providing private keys, everything with the good intentions of improving service reliability, of course.
What kept me from helping other projects is that I did not have the Bitcoin codebase studied thoroughly and found it complicated and lengthy to make adjustments to it. That’s why I started casually working on Bismuth back in 2015.”
2. Explain us $BIS as if we were 5yo?
“Bismuth is trying to be the blockchain lego, so I hope it will attract a lot of young people (maybe even 5 year-olds?) who are not seasoned programmers but always wanted to be a part of the crypto scene. Bismuth is trying to be modular, extensible and as simple as possible with only about 2400 lines of code. If you want to work with it, you can take inspiration from the many operational open source projects and use them as reference to develop your own. I picked the name because I was fascinated by the beauty of the bismuth crystal geometry at the time and to this date.”
3. How different is $BIS from your closest competitor?
“There have been so many crypto projects recently that it is really hard to keep track of those comparable. I believe that Bismuth is the first platform written purely in Python. It currently operates with a pruning mechanism conceptually similar to PascalCoin’s SafeBox. Other than that, we have a working on-chain casino that Zcash promised and we delivered, an address-based transaction anonymization mixer taking inspiration from Monero, Zcash and Ardor/NXT, on-chain HTML browser made in 20 minutes to take over HTMLcoin, un/encrypted messaging and integrated alias system inspired by Ardor/NXT, light wallet, pool. All of these are fully open-source and available for everyone to run with a click of the mouse. We also have a close-source web wallet. For modularity, we offer an arbitrary on-chain data system, so anyone can really create anything.
Bismuth has taken on a philosophy of the decentralized application engines to prevent on-chain bloat Ethereum is currently experiencing, so the state of decentralized operations is not shared across all nodes, but only by those who decide to interact with particular apps. Only data (the application substrate) is stored on the chain. Tezos will enable changing the rules by voting, while Bismuth does not force you into any decisions enforced by any group, you can simply choose whether you want to participate in this or that module.”
4. What lays ahead in the short/long term for $BIS?
“I would finally like to see Bismuth on Cryptopia, we have been trying to finish the integration with the exchange for a while now, Bismuth is not yet trading on any exchange. We recently simplified the fee system and relentlessly work on the core node stability, compatibility and end-user friendliness. The initial 2017 roadmap has been almost completely finished and updated in September — Bismuth will have it’s own on-chain language, which will enable generation and transfer of secondary tokens for everyone, and eventually execution of smart contracts as we know them.
5. Why are you a Tezos Evangelist?
“I saw some Ethereum Evangelist, so I thought why not have a Tezos Evangelist, it was entertaining for me that people have such religious terms for people and things in crypto projects, “Bitcoin Jesus” is another one of them.”
6. Why will Tezos will be better than the rest?
“Tezos combines a few things which are poised to make it successful. The project itself has been under development since 2014, so it has some kind of a working product, which is now being finalized. If you want to go through the code, you can, you are not buying just promises.
When I first got into crypto, I was judging projects solely by the technological improvements over Bitcoin. I was in the “make a good product and they will come” camp, but the recent years have taught me how much advertising and community-building are important. And Tezos has a lot of marketing with $50 mil already in motion just for that.
As Vitalik has shown us, a really successful crypto project requires a good, public speaker, and the Breitman couple is very good at that. It really struck me that nobody before Arthur was able to describe the blockchain based on the three interoperating layers — transactions, consensus, and network.”
7. How you risk manage your portfolio? How’d you handled latest China FUD?
“When I eagerly entered the market in 2014, I knew Bitcoin would go up sooner or later. I am more cautious today, because experiencing a 3-year long bear market is not entertaining for someone who bought the top. I stopped paying attention when $BTC was around $300 and was awaken when it was nearing $2000. Around $4000, the only portfolio I had left was Tezos and some really small market cap coins on the brink of delisting. Bitcoin is facing competition fiercer than ever before. The biggest mistake I have probably made is a lack of diversification and selling Ethereum for around $2 with an intention to buy it after it drops lower. I will not be making the same mistake with Tezos. My risk management strategy is never to buy so much I might be forced to sell at a loss. I tend to buy all-time-lows sometimes, I keep the good projects even for years (NXT), but I would like to focus mainly on development now. Trading and investing is quite exhausting and does not really add anything to the game itself. With that said, I recently re-entered the game after selling some portion of Bismuth to an early investor and friend of mine.
As for the China FUD, I am surprised that BTC has not dropped lower (yet). I think the biggest difference are the new markets in Japan and Korea, they were not there before to defend BTC against China. Many good traders believe that we will touch $7000 soon, but everyone should be careful.”
8. What are your entrepreneurial fields of interest?
“When I lost my life savings to LTC during the price fall, I realized I needed some form of additional income to sustain my lust for crypto. In may 2014, I opened a YouTube channel and started producing gaming videos for competitive players of a DotA-related game, it was a huge success I never expected. I developed an automated infrastructure which would keep providing source content for me, something rarely anyone was doing in the Machinima genre back then. When I realized that a computer can replace an unlimited number of low-skilled online workers, I started using this to my advantage. I soon expanded my portfolio with a plethora of fully automated YouTube channels, with content ranging from music through robotic news anchor to aggregation of user content from Reddit. To this day, I believe that aggregation is one of the most powerful entrepreneurial assets which has yet to come to the public awareness.”
9. #1 recommendation to $CRYPTO developers?
“If you are planning on starting your own crypto project, be aware that network is a living thing. This type of software is operational every minute of every day in the year and you should be ready to investigate possible issues or intervene accordingly. If you like doing what you do, keep it up! Also, users reporting bugs and adding improvements to Bismuth will be rewarded.”
For me it is immensely satisfactory to poke the brain of someone smarter than me. I truly appreciate the time taken to answer these questions @tezosevangelist.
I have been following for some months now the development of Bismuth in Bitcointalk, and let me tell you, this team is thorough and very diligent on their approach, not worried about the time it takes to fine tune every detail.
For those looking for gems, be advised, $BIS will be on Topia real soon.
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