BIF & Sphereon 2019 Q1 update

Previous Updates
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ORIGINAL PLEDGES START
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-DEVELOPMENT

--Fund projects & products that increase adoption of Factom

--Hosting and administration of Distributed Ledger infrastructures

--Create preconditions for external parties to take part in creating private, permissioned and public DLT infrastructures

--Research and development of DLT software

-MARKETING

--Increase awareness through marketing, hosting meetups, website, social media promotion, speaking sessions and boots at conferences

-TESTNET

--Contribute one Testnet node per mainnet node and at least one courtesy node

-OTHER

-- There is a dependency on the FCT/USD price, but from an FCT/USD price of $ 13.00 and upwards, BIF will defer 50% of the generated FCTs to the Grant pool.

--Provide regular income & expenses reports to the community

- PLEDGED EFFICIENCY

2 nodes: 50% *see remark above
1 node: 50% *see remark above
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ORIGINAL PLEDGES END
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Blockchain Innovation Foundation has updated it's efficiency from 10% to 35% according to our pledges in application.

We lowered our efficiency on 2018103 from 50% to 10% according to our pledges, because of USD price for FCT after having ran for months at a higher efficiency than pledged. As we now see price is climbing steadily we decided to increase our efficiency to 35%.
Current Update: BIF & Sphereon 2019 Q1 update
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#1
We have decided to create a combined report on our Factom activities for Blockchain Innovation Foundation (BIF) and Sphereon for Q1. Our reasoning for this is the following. We had originally planned, at the time of the original application when the FCT exchange rate was around $24, to hire people in BIF and run many activities out of BIF. As we have been living in a new reality the last year, many of these activities are now run out of Sphereon as that is a company that can take on calculated risks.

The Q1 report is bit later than hoped and expected. This is due to being extremely busy in the last few weeks.

First, we were out in Abu Dhabi and Dubai helping our friend and colleague Colin Campbell with the soft-launch of his Off-Blocks solution at the Future of Blockchain Summit. The Off-Blocks solution is looking great and raised an enormous amount of interest amongst visitors. At the same time, we were moving to a new office location, with all the hassle involved with that. Then, we prepared for and attended the Blockchain Hackathon in Groningen, which was also quite hectic, but also quite successful.


Development Grants

As BIF and Sphereon we requested several grants during the last 2 Grant Application rounds. Only our Core Development grant was extended with 500 FCT. We’re about to update our reports for the grants on the Factomize forums, but for a short update: we now have one fulltime developer (Laurens) and one part-time developer (Sander) working and learning core development. Unfortunately, one of the developers has been ill for several weeks, but the good news is that he is on the mend and will be returning to work slowly over the next weeks. We will not be averting that fully on the grant. Sander made his first Pull Request to fix the flapping people noticed in the control panel. Apparently, there were some more logic issues in the state code he is still discussing but has suggested some changes.

We’re continuing our work on implementing Decentralized Identifiers (DIDs) and an Universal Resolver on Factom and are expecting a release for testing in about 2 weeks. We are seeing a lot of interest in the DIDs on top of Factom from our clients and also during the hackathon.

We are also finishing up the grant that brings Factom integration into the Alfresco Developer Framework. We are doing some polishing and documentation work currently so it will be available for release shortly.


Marketing Grants

Maarten Boender is a member of the Marketing Committee and is leading the work on the Factom Explainer Video, for which the committee received a grant, which is managed by Maarten and BIF. The same for the Hackathon grant.
More details will be published on the Factomize channel, but we ran a Request for Proposal (RFP) for the Explainer Video. It was awarded 2 weeks ago to Story Architects and we’re now working with them in the Production phase.


The Odyssey Hackathon

As mentioned already, the world largest blockchain and AI Hackathon was held last week. What makes this hackathon different from most other hackathons is that here Blockchain is not a solution looking for a problem, but here, Corporates, NGOs and Governments come with Problems and ask the community to come up with Solutions.
Factom had several prominent community members at the event, Paul Snow as a Juror, Julian Fletcher Taylor, Devon Katz, Stuart Johnson, Niels Klomp and Maarten Boender as “Jedi” (specialists) helping teams with their challenges. And, last but not least, Damien Michael (@damo) in the press-core, interviewing people and promoting Factom.
The interest for the Factom Protocol was slow in the beginning. It was obvious again that many people are unaware of Factom. And those who knew Factom thought it was no longer active. Which is very worrying.
The good news is that once we started explaining the Factom Protocol – the possibilities, the community, the grant system – many people became very interested. In fact, two teams decided halfway during the hackathon to add Factom to their solutions. And – maybe not unrelated – these two teams also won their challenge track.
The day after we were able to talk to all the winners and at least half of them will take a serious look at Factom or already decided to work with us. Additionally, we had (semi) government departments and other companies wanting us to talk about Factom some more after the event. Niels will come up with a writeup about the hackathon next week.


Projects

We continue to work on a bunch of existing and new projects. To mention some of them:

To start off with one of the more visible ones, we’re making good progress with co-creating a tokenized eco-system for the global clinical trials and research community together with Triall.io. A Minimal Viable Product (MVP) has been created and is now being demoed and presented to potential investors. A whitepaper has been published recently and Triall has been awarded a seal of excellence by the European Commission, which basically tells investors it is a strong project to invest in according to the EC. This project has a huge potential, both as a repetitive use case, as well as usage for the Factom Protocol as it uses both FAT and Factom directly.

Together with our partner eSpecialisten we have created a document certification solution for Dutch governments (eWaarmerk.nl) and eBurgerpas.nl, a tokenized social benefits solution. We have onboarded several new municipalities for eWaarmerk and are putting the finishing touches on the eBurgerpas using the latest FAT updates.
Because of the success we are in talks on creating a separate entity for this collaboration.


The integration of ValidSign using our APIs and Factom blockchain to provide audit trails for all their transactions is also progressing. Since this will be a project that goes straight to production in the future both parties take their time to properly test the integration. Usage for the protocol is expected to be high. ValidSign signs on average more than a million transactions per month.

We were invited by Alfresco to speak at their customer days, f.i. in San Francisco, about our standard integrations to provide Proof of Authenticity for all content and business processes. We also have a new partner that wants to develop document sharing portals based on Alresco and Factom with us.

Together with Colin from Off-Blocks we have created a mobile-first platform for digital signatures using blockchain for digital identities and immutable transaction logging. We assisted Colin during his soft-launch at the Future of Blockchain Summit in Dubai, where there was great interest for this solution. We are continuing to add functionality to the solution and at the same time assist in the sales process. There are some huge organizations that we are talking to but leave any details up to Colin.

We are also proud to announce a new partnership with Digital Assets, the company behind the DAML Smart Contracts framework. They asked us to partner with them for our document- and blockchain API integrations. We will be start anchoring DAML-based Smart Contracts on multiple blockchains, using our Enterprise APIs.

Another partner of ours already created an integration with DAML and our APIs as well and this solution will be available as a Microsoft ‘IP Co-sell’ solution which means they are assigned a dedicated Microsoft success manager who will help them navigate the co-sell experience and be accountable for driving joint account and territory planning, lead sharing, and channel and field readiness of the solution. On top of that Microsoft sellers are paid to sell the solutions based on the contract value and are eager to showcase new, innovative solutions to their customer accounts.

Another prestigious project is that we’ll be working on a solution for antibiotic resistance surveillance and stewardship with the Amsterdam Institute for Global Health and Development, which is a multi-year, world-wide project. The aim is to build a solution where blockchain technologies are used to prevent misuse or overuse of the latest antibiotic medicines in order to slow down resistant strains. This is a project that is in preparation for almost one year now.

We’re also building a solution with the BlockChangeEU foundation to provide a personal data-vault for students for their competencies, certificates and diplomas, using verifiable claims and badges. This solution will be based on an existing open standard, but we’re porting this to blockchain technologies to create immutable proof. This will enable the students to ‘carry’ these with them as they are moving between schools or employers.

Linked to this project is that we’ve been working with the Executive-branch of the Dutch Ministry of Education (DUO) to bring these same technologies to be adopted in a European-wide project with the EU to hopefully become the de facto standard for the EU.

As co-creation is the cornerstone of our business, we continue to work with several other ANOs in early-stage projects around the world: Federate This/Off-blocks, DBGrow, Factomatic, TFA, VBIF, as well as two potential new ANOs. Then there are other projects within industry, healthcare, IoT and governments local and abroad we cannot talk about at this moment. We hope to provide some more updates on these in the next ANO report. Suffice to say that we have many projects and leads interested in our Factom solutions and integrations.

Looking forward for the next quarter!
 
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#3
Wow, that is certainly impressive. I don't know about gearing up for the next quarter, I think you guys deserve a rest! Seriously, I am deeply impressed with your progress. The work on Antibiotics is a global opportunity to resolve a very significant problem for mankind and leaving aside the commercial benefits I am proud to be even remotely associated with that. Your work on immutable academic qualifications is of immense value. I look forward with interest to this coming quarters progress.(y)