Chris Tse is the Founder and Head of Product at Cardstack where he leads a team of blockchain architects and open-source contributors to build the experience layer of the decentralized Internet. In this interview, Chris will be discussing with us, the Cardstack blockchain project and the CARD token sale;
1) Could you please tell us a bit about yourself?
Chris : I’m a lifelong technologist and designer, working on user-facing applications, analytic data systems, and open source software for nearly two decades: from hacking the Mozilla browser in the early days to designing dApps on Ethereum today. I’ve spent more than half of my career leading R&D and innovation teams for Fortune 500 companies, before more recently drawing upon my passion for open systems and protocols to start the Cardstack project. I’ve also co-founded two other blockchain startups, Dot Blockchain Media and Monegraph, which are pioneering real-world use cases for this new technology.
2) What is Cardstack ?
Chris : Cardstack began in 2014 as an answer to a few questions: how can we create a user experience that will give people more power over their digital lives? How can we create a sustainable economic model for open source software? How can we use the power of the emerging decentralized Internet to make it all possible?
Users will get to know Cardstack through our Hub: an intuitive card-based user interface that lets users orchestrate their digital lives, whether it takes place on the cloud, on the blockchain, or on their own machine. From one place, users will be able to manage all of their software, and visualize all the information coming in and out. We open-source it, so that the system is not under any one part’s control.
For developers, Cardstack is an open-source SDK that allows for the creation of composable, extensible apps, backed by our off-chain consensus protocol and a deep library of powerful drop-in functionality. The key is that Cardstack allows makers to get paid according to the real usage of their work, calculated by our transparent, community-run payment and governance algorithm.
More than that, Cardstack is a new direction in how we think about the relationship of people to software and people to the Internet. It’s an economically viable, open-source vision of what decentralization looks like.
3) What inspired you to launch a Blockchain and Cryptocurrency venture with Cardstack ?
Chris : We see an opportunity right now to challenge the way today’s monopolistic digital superpowers put users into silos, mine their data, and extract the value they create. Cardstack’s goal is to reorient the Internet around users. Blockchain and cryptocurrency are innovations that have laid a very strong foundation for that goal; we’re improving the technology and upgrading the experience to make it usable and sustainable for the mass market.
4) What makes the Cardstack cryptocurrency unique?
Chris : The Cardstack Token (CARD) is an ERC20 token designed to give users one simple way to manage all their digital needs, while fairly paying developers and creators for doing good work. We back it up with a new consensus protocol called Tally, which harnesses currently existing GPU mining power to perform the complex calculations needed to scale up dApps while keeping everything secure. Built into this is a function to reward miners with a share of the ecosystem they’re helping to power, which makes everything economically sustainable.
5) How much do you intend to raise in the CARD Token Sale and what are the steps for contributing?
Chris : We just announced our Token Generation Event details here: http://cardstack.com/tge
6) What were some of the biggest challenges you encountered while working to launch your ICO?
Chris : We received a surge of interest soon after announcing we would do a Token Generation Event. With so many people in the community looking for a project that can help crypto and blockchain turn the corner toward mass market adoption, we’ve spent a lot of time balancing our fundraiser to include the widest community possible while ensuring early adopters of our ideas and technology are given priority to participate. This also means we have to optimize token allocations among our three main participants: end-users, software makers, and analytic miners, so they can have access to the right proportion of tokens at each stage of the growth of the ecosystem, to maximize its utility.
7) What’s going to happen to Cardstack after token sale concludes and what where do you see things in 5 years?
Chris : We plan to ship a few very exciting apps in the near future that show off the best of Cardstack’s design principles. Stay tuned for that.
Another point is that Cardstack— down to its fundraising structure — has been designed for the sustainable growth of the ecosystem from day one. In our first year the Foundation will be bootstrapping reward pools with tokens to attract makers and miners to participate, bringing in end users and creating a user base that can provide revenue. During this time we also look forward to announcing early strategic partnerships, and funding development and security bounty programs. And of course we’ll be continuing to grow Cardstack Syndicate, our development and design studio.
8) What are your marketing and sales strategies to achieve that?
Chris : It’s very important for us that we tell a compelling and thoughtful story about the Internet we’re trying to create. We don’t want to get bogged down by day-to-day hype cycles — we’ve been working toward this vision for years, long before blockchain was a buzzword. What we’re aiming for is something much more longer term. Our goal is to find a way to convey that, in a way that meaningfully distinguishes us from a lot of the more ephemeral projects out there.
9) Could you tell us a little about your team and customer support?
Chris : We started with a team that was very engineering-focused, where almost every single person was a developer or technologist. As our software stack has matured, we are growing the team to bring in talented storytellers, savvy marketers, and community support evangelists to help get our tools into the hands of users. Blockchain is an international phenomenon, and we plan to recruit people around the world to join the Cardstack team to carry out our vision.
10) Would you like to talk about your legal and security measures?
Chris : We are determined for the core Cardstack software architecture and protocol to become a public good that will not be dominated by the interests of a single commercial entity, but instead cultivated by a network of cooperating and competing groups that work toward a common vision, incentivized by a shared underlying token mechanism. To ensure this happens, we have decided that the Swiss foundation — also known as stiftung in German, which happens to be the structure used by the Ethereum Foundation — is the best fit for our principles. We are glad to be working with a team of experienced advisors in Crypto Valley, in the Zug/Zurich area and the law firm MME to ensure that our Token Generation Event is compliant with all applicable laws and regulations.
11) Do you have more information for our readers?