What lessons has the TF learned from the last two years in operation?
“For a successful technology, reality must take precedence over public relations, for nature cannot be fooled.” – Richard Feynman
The above quote, from the American physicist Richard Feynman, sums up the Tezos Foundation operating philosophy well. The key ingredients to becoming the winning smart contract technology are a solid long-term runway, a future-proof system of on-chain governance, strong product-market fit, and a team with great execution skills on all levels. In terms of what we’ve learned, considering the speed of blockchain adoption, including the many hurdles for the adoption of cryptocurrencies generally, the Foundation believes that the life-span of TF will have to be long enough to effectively support the creation and growth of a sustainable Tezos ecosystem. The Foundation’s purpose is not, however, to exist in perpetuity; it intends to wind down over time.
Which priorities that TF has set out have worked, and what has not worked?
One area that certainly needs to be improved is the efficiency and effectiveness of the grantmaking process, tying the latter to wider product and market/user requirements and ecosystem goals/needs. To this end, a new grantmaking platform and revised processes are currently in the final stages of preparation. We will have more to share in the coming months.
Another place where there is room for improvement is the developer experience. There should have been a stronger focus on documentation and UX from the start. Currently, multiple entities in the ecosystem are focusing on improving the quality of the documentation and we are hearing first positive feedback from users.
In terms of what has worked, the Foundation has funded a number of solid core-tech teams. This has been key to laying the foundation for a scalable technology and it continues to be a priority of the Foundation. We have also successfully focused on professionalizing TF. TF is very likely the only PwC-audited blockchain foundation in the space and this has helped to legitimize the Tezos project in traditional industries.
Lastly, putting in place an executive team, allowing the TF Council to step away from day-to-day management, is a decision that will clearly pay off in the long term and shows that TF values sound governance beyond its legal requirements.
What do you believe has been the biggest failure of TF ?
The lack of execution and focus by the Foundation leadership in the period directly after the fundraiser and until early 2018. This led to negative attention.
Are there any specific targets (annual/quarterly) that TF sets out to achieve that we can read about?
One of TF’s main goals right now, with the burgeoning volume of ecosystem activity, is to build out a reliable system of operations that works seamlessly around the globe. Additionally, TF is constantly evaluating the quality of asset and liquidity management, the safety and auditability of the crypto assets in custody, and the efficiency of the grants process (as mentioned above – changes in this are a major focus). The weekly and biannual updates regularly and transparently report on these targets and the next biannual update will be issued by the end of August 2020.
How can TF be even more aggressive in driving Tezos adoption? Where do you see Tezos by the end of 2020, and where do you see it in the next 3-5 years?
TF should more aggressively and effectively foster Tezos adoption and deploy funds in relevant markets and industries and grow the Tezos ecosystem globally.
The focus in 2020 is on making Tezos scalable and easy to adopt. By the end of this year the developer experience should be massively improved and we should see the groundwork in place for more widespread adoption. In the next 3-5 years, we see high-value transactions occurring on Tezos at scale. We are only at the beginning of many years of excitement and widespread adoption of Tezos.