1.What do you think the next big development or trend in DeFi will be?
Decentralized finance, mimics finance. If we consider traditional finance, we started with; remittance, asset tokenization, stock trading, market making, leverage/lending, insurance, high-frequency trading, derivatives, and integrated payments. The reason it evolved this way is because each preceding item is required for the next to become viable. Decentralized finance, is following this pattern to date, we started with remittance (BTC & ETH), asset tokenization (ERC20 & NFT), trading (Etherdelta, Idex, & Uniswap), market making (AMM), leverage/lending (Compound & Aave), insurance (Nexus Mutual, this area is yet to be developed), high-frequency trading (this is constrained by the underlying blockchain technology, first we need to unlock high-frequency blockchains), derivatives (Synthetix & GMX — this vertical is under-represented), integrated payments (Bitpay, Coinbase Pay — another under-represented area).
The next developments would likely be less around core primitives, but more around the requirements to expand from on-chain to off-chain. Specifically;
- Tokenizing real-world assets
- Onchain auditing tools and reporting
Real-world assets become a regulatory discussion which has historically been why this has been underdeveloped, however with positive legislation occurring in EU and Asia, we will likely see an influx here.
2.What is the biggest misconception about the integration of blockchain technology with artificial intelligence?
There is no integration. An AI can’t (with current tech) live inside a blockchain. AI’s are also black box and mutable, blockchains are transparent and immutable. This does not mean there aren’t verticals of integration, aka, blockchains can be used for payment infrastructure to facilitate machine-to-machine access to (or between) AIs. Blockchains can be used for AI federation and communication protocols. If a model is finalized (which doesn’t really happen), that model can be certified and verified on-chain. All of the above can however be achieved without blockchains. The two aren’t in an exclusive symbiotic relationship. The problem is less the intersection of AI and blockchain, and more the narrative chasing/hype/fomo system of the crypto industry.
3.What do you feel is the next major advancement that will come to blockchain technology if AI isn’t really that applicable?
Throughput. The same way that ISDN improved over 56k dialup. Or ADSL over ISDN. Or Fibre over ADSL, etc. Bitcoin (56k dialup) was improved by Ethereum (ISDN). Ethereum has been improved by Fantom (ADSL). We are currently working on Fibre. Each milestone is blocked by the underlying technology. Decentralized finance couldn’t practically exist on Bitcoin, but it could Ethereum. Decentralized social media, gaming, streaming, etc can’t exist on Ethereum, to some extent they can on Fantom, but they won’t be unlocked until the barriers are decreased. This is addressed via removing barriers to entry, such as wallets (removed via account abstraction), gas fees (removed via economic abstraction and gas subsidies), and non token-based revenue streams (removed via gas monetization and revenue sharing). We have hit the current tech wall and need to breach it first.
4.Are there any developments in the Fantom ecosystem that you would like to share?
We have been focused on addressing the above issues, and as such our most important developments are;
- Fastest confirmation times (sub 900ms finality) of any competing L1 or L2
- True finality (no longest chain rule, no chain reorg), easier developer implementation
- Gas monetization, allowing developers to earn 15% of revenue from gas fees
- Gas subsidies, allowing users to onboard without needing gas (FTM).
- Native smart wallets, allowing wallets to be owned by normal web2 methods (username/password, social auth, face id, etc)
5.Are there any other comments or insights you would like to share that you think our readers would find useful?
Depends on the reader, but I think an important thing to remember is that narratives and news travel a lot faster than research and development. These things take years and decades, not weeks or months. Patience and a long-term view are key.