In the Celo Tech Talks: Hello Celo Q&A, Judy Piper, an engineer at C-Labs, introduces the purpose of the Celo Tech Talk series. Celo is a mobile-first blockchain platform aimed at building a financial system that promotes prosperity for all. The series aims to share Celo technology knowledge with the growing Celo community. In this particular talk, Judy invites Marek Kolszewski and Gerald James to discuss Celo technology and the upcoming Mobile Hackathon organized as part of the Gitcoin project.
Marek Kolszewski, one of the founders and CTO of C-Labs, shares a brief introduction. He mentions his background, being born in Singapore to Polish parents, studying computer science in Canada, and pursuing a Ph.D. at MIT. Gerald James, originally from Ethiopia and exposed to tech in Northern California, introduces himself. He talks about his involvement in a virtual reality company focused on collaborative protein and vaccine design, which has gained traction during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Judy asks Gerald to explain the Mobile Hackathon and why a mobile-first approach is crucial. Gerald highlights that the hackathon is a call to action for builders who want to create mobile-first solutions, catering to specific communities’ needs. The goal is to provide accessible financial tools that even non-technical individuals can use. He mentions Impact Market, a project created within a year, enabling a programmatic distribution of a stablecoin-based universal basic income to recipients worldwide.
Gerald discusses some of the key projects being built on the Celo platform. He mentions Paycheck, a project similar to Patreon, allowing creators to receive direct payments from supporters. He emphasizes the need for builders to identify opportunities and start building solutions tailored to specific communities, such as a mobile-first lending club for Latin American communities.
Judy raises a question about the advantages of building on Celo for Ethereum developers. Marek responds, mentioning the full Ethereum compatibility of Celo, which makes it easy for Ethereum developers to transition. He highlights the availability of essential tools like the Valora wallet, the built-in platform for creating stablecoins, and the network’s ease of use.
A question about the difference between Celo (native ERC-20 token) and Celo Dollars arises. Marek explains the stability protocol used on Celo and the role of multiple stablecoin assets. He mentions that Celo Dollars are backed by a reserve of various assets, with 50% of the reserve being Celo itself. This stability mechanism ensures that the value of stablecoins is maintained. Additionally, he discusses the security of funds, even in cases where a phone number might be compromised.
During the live Q&A session, the audience asks questions about projects on the Celo mainnet and the ability to bring Bitcoin to billions of people through Celo. Marek and Gerald discuss projects like Moola, a lending market, and a stablecoin protocol called Synthetics. They also mention collaborations with organizations working on refugee projects and the potential to utilize Celo’s network for broader social impact.
Judy wraps up the session, thanking the participants and emphasizing the importance of community effort in expanding the reach of Celo technology. The session ends on a lighthearted note, revealing the “two truths and one lie” game played earlier and bidding farewell to the audience.