We posted our DeFi Infra & Tooling Bounty up for discussion last week on Polkassembly but wanted to cross-post it here for greater visibility and hopefully some community feedback. We’ll give a broad overview of the problems we see and how this bounty aims to solve them.
Some of the challenges that the Polkadot ecosystem grapples with are the lack of unified infrastructure and tooling.
On the infrastructure front, the absence of a robust, ecosystem-wide infrastructure support, which centralized exchanges (CEXs), on/off ramps, custodians, and bridges, significantly hinders accessibility for new users to Polkadot-based applications. This issue not only limits the ecosystem’s growth potential but also curtails the ability of institutional capital to participate in and leverage applications within the Polkadot ecosystem.
Additionally, effective tooling is fundamental in the context of Polkadot’s multi-sharded, heterogeneous architecture. To streamline development processes and boost efficiency, robust and generic tooling solutions are indispensable. Currently, much of the tooling is developed by individual parachain teams for their specific parachains, leading to redundant development efforts and inefficient allocation of resources across the ecosystem. A wider supply of generic and unified tooling would significantly enhance the Developer Experience on Polkadot which in most cases translates into an improved UX for end-users.
Lastly, the existing mechanisms for infrastructure providers and tooling developers to engage with the ecosystem are complex and uninviting. These teams are currently channeled through OpenGov, requiring them to navigate a steep learning curve to secure community approval for their proposals. This cumbersome process creates substantial barriers to entry for teams capable of contributing valuable products and solutions to the Polkadot ecosystem.
The purpose of this bounty is to streamline the allocation of treasury funds for developing and integrating essential tools, SDKs, UIs, and APIs needed to overcome current barriers to Polkadot adoption as well as to fund the necessary infrastructure for AssetHub and BridgeHub. It benefits from a proposed curator set of prominent community members who possess a deep understanding of these challenges and their solutions. These individuals will actively oversee the progress of selected builders and service providers, ensuring a wise and effective use of treasury funds.
The bounty’s operational framework draws inspiration from the Web3 Foundations Grants but with a more targeted focus. Leveraging the insights and expertise of parachain founders and builders within our curator set, Velocity Labs will initiate the process by publishing Request-for-Proposals (RFPs) that provide specific details on the tooling or infrastructure projects intended for funding. Velocity Labs will actively seek out capable teams, both from within and outside our ecosystem, to ensure that the most qualified teams are applying for the bounty. The selection process will be merit-based, relying on a comprehensive application submissions that include details on proposed development, milestone plans, relevant prior experience, available resources, and funding requests. Chosen applicants will receive feedback from the curators, and Velocity Labs will conduct code reviews and testing to ensure that deliverables meet the expected standards before disbursing funds from the Bounty.
Complementing the primary scope, the bounty will also allocate funding for maintenance requests for tooling with demonstrated broad use and adoption. Additionally, teams willing to develop documentation for new and existing tooling will receive support. With this we attempt to encompasses the entire development lifecycle, ensuring that not only the right solutions are developed and maintained but also that these solutions are effectively brought to market to maximize their impact within the Polkadot ecosystem.
Proposed Curator Set
- Velocity Labs (Nicolas Arevalo)
- Moonbeam (Alberto Viera & Derek Yo)
- Acala (Bryan Chen)
- Centrifuge (Lucas Vogelsang & Jeroen Offerjins)
- HydraDX (Jakub Gregus)
- Novama Technologies (Leemo)
If you’re interested in digging into the details of the proposal you can find the full proposal on this link.
We’re looking for community feedback to make sure we don’t leave any stone unturned when submitting the bounty for referendum. We’re happy to answer any questions or comments as well in case something isn’t clear enough.