Catalyst SITREP #1 

 April 2, 2021

By  Aaron Luhning

Today, I'm kicking off the beginning of a series of regular SITREPs (updates) concerning progress made on Catalyst development.  In the military we use SITREPs to provide commanders with an update/analysis of the current situation.  They can be sent at regular intervals or whenever something significant happens.  The aim being to keep all who receive them (but especially commanders) situationally aware of things as they are developing.  So here's your first Catalyst focused SITREP from Vital Point AI.

Announcement of Funding Support

I'm pleased to announce that NEAR's Community Council recently voted to provide some funding assistance to Catalyst development.  We now have the means to compensate you (in NEAR) as a developer for approved contributions to the project.  

First and foremost, I want to publicly thank NEAR and the community council members for putting their trust in Vital Point AI to deliver on this project.  It's this kind of support to their community and initiatives like Catalyst that are going to continue drawing people to the NEAR ecosystem which is already outstanding, but gets bigger and better every day.

The goal of this support, of course, is to accelerate project development and we're aiming for a minimum viable project by May 2021.  We're already well on our way there. If you're not familiar with Catalyst - recommend heading over to Catalyst headquarters to check  out the Executive Summary and Project Concept for some background.

Vital Point AI is building Catalyst...

A decentralized autonomous organization software as a service (DAOSaaS) with social/community features on NEAR.  We aim to provide a platform for non-technical users to self-organize around a cause or objective using open web/web 3.0 technologies/functionality that feels like the web 2.0 applications everyone uses today.

There are big plans for Catalyst and they will come to life.  A quick view of the roadmap for Catalyst below will give you some indication of where things are headed.

Current Situation (CURSIT)

Development started on Catalyst several months ago.  Since then, significant progress has been made resulting in a semi-functional product that is very close to being useable in a minimal viable product sense.  The repo is currently a bit of a mess, but is going through cleanup and steady improvement.  Currently in the works are:

  • NEAR Personas integration.  Key to the community features that are going to make Catalyst stand out over other options is the ability for people to create Personas to interact with DAOs of their choosing as Personas of their choosing.  On that front, Vital Point AI has put considerable effort into NEAR Personas.  Digital identity (DIDs) for people, DAOs, and other components is a major focus of the development efforts at the moment.  It's also causing experimentation with technologies including Ceramic Network, Ceramic IDX, Textile, and most recently Verida.
  • Code Cleanup and Wallet Upgrades.  As sometimes happens in the quest to just get something working - there's a good deal of code in the repository that is now either redundant, unnecessary, or has been swapped out for something else.  In general, need to do a good housecleaning.  Catalyst was also started off a version of the NEAR wallet that has undergone development and improvements itself - we'll need to revisit at some point to bring in those improvements/efficiencies.
  • Project Management and Organization.  Now that funding is available - aiming to increase the size of the team working on Catalyst.  So, things like this SITREP, the project board on Github, and getting bounties/tasks online are top of the list at the moment.  In order to accelerate development, need to make sure the wheels won't fall off.
  • Bounties are showing up.  Have created and assigned our first bounty/contract for the building of the invite/recommendation system that will be a "catalyst" (pun intended) in bringing new members to DAOs.  Thanks to Davantzis for accepting the challenge :). 

In general, pretty pleased with where things are at and the couple of us who are engaged heavily in the project so far are super stoked that we get to build something that is really going to change how people interact and self-organize to manage resources around a cause or objective.

Want to Get Involved?

As you can see in the roadmap above - there are plenty of opportunities to get involved with and help change the way people interact and manage communities and their resources.

At some point, getting involved with Catalyst will mean using Catalyst itself - where proposals will be submitted, discussed, sponsored and managed through NEAR based smart contracts in a more open web manner.  We'll be transitioning management of project development to the Catalyst platform as soon as we can - both as a means of ongoing testing as well as pushing development forward.

Until then though, we're forced to use the tools at our disposal.  We manage the project through a Github project board and provide the development opportunities as bounty labelled issues - both of which you can always find in the resources section of Catalyst headquarters.

I'd also encourage you to join the Vital Point AI Discord server where there is a channel devoted to Catalyst development (as well as other projects in the pipeline).  We monitor it and aim to provide timely follow-up on any questions or to provide clarifications/announcements.

If you decide to work with us to build Catalyst and impact the world, you'll be doing so as an Independent Contractor.  

The general idea of what that means is that you are running your own business and Vital Point AI will enter into an agreement (contract) for services you provide.

The image on the right provides a summary of what's involved.  Catalyst will take some of the admin off your hands at some point (i.e., resource allocation will be automatic once a proposal is approved) - but it's up to you to consider whatever laws/regulations are in effect in your region and plan accordingly (income tax and things like that).

In Summary

Catalyst is swinging into high gear.  With target of May 2021 for a MVP and likely sooner for some user testing, we're looking forward to seeing how Catalyst is going to be used by communities, artists, freelancers, and everyone else looking for a self-organization solution.

You have an opportunity to earn some NEAR, learn blockchain/open web development and help us build the platform.  Reach out and get involved (only those with ambition/initiative/persistence and self-discipline please and thanks).

Until next time.  SITREP ends.

Aaron Luhning

I'm the husband of an amazing wife and father to two fantastic kids. I spend my time immersed in blockchain, data science, and mixed reality to automate processes, eliminate bureaucracy and create mind-blowing decision support solutions. When I'm not doing that, I'm running ultra-marathons, skydiving or boxing. Oh, and I don't do this stuff professionally. About sums me up.

{"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}