David Vorick Sia
Education, Podcasts

Money 3.0: David Vorick from Sia talks about decentralized digital ownership

In this episode of Money 3.0, Abra founder and CEO Bill Barhydt is in conversation with David Vorick, co-founder and CEO of Nebulos, the company that is building the Sia network for decentralized data storage.

Listen to the full episode or find a transcript of the show below.

Bill Barhydt: Hello, everyone. Welcome to another exciting episode of Abra’s Money 3.0. Bill Barhydt here, CEO and Founder of Abra. With me today, joining me for the Money 3.0 podcast is David Vorick. David is CEO of, did I get it right? Is it Nebulous? Or, how do I say it?

David Vorick: It’s Nebulous.

Bill Barhydt: Nebulous. And Nebulous is best known as the creator of Siacoin. And I really want to dig into this, because I’m really interested in decentralized storage. And so let me ask you a question right out of the gate. Why should consumers, first of all, welcome. And second, why should consumers care about decentralized storage in the cloud?

David Vorick: Yeah, great question. I think it really comes down to control, not just of your data, but of the world around you. So when we put data on say, like Google, or on Gmail, or on iCloud, what’s happening is these other companies are taking our data. They’re scanning our data, they’re learning who we are. They’re crafting advertisements. They’re trying to, like it’s Google’s goal to shape our behavior, shape the way we spend money, to fit their purpose and to fit their bottom line.

David Vorick: And so if we don’t have control of our data, we’re kind of just offering our lives up to Google, and Google is going to make the most of it.

Bill Barhydt: I was watching this Great Hack documentary, and it’s okay. I mean, I think for those of us in the middle of all this stuff, it’s probably not as deep as it should be. But it’s definitely worth watching. I encourage all of the Abra viewers who are on Netflix to watch The Great Hack. Brittany Kaiser is the protagonist who was the whistleblower on the whole Cambridge Analytica thing.

Bill Barhydt: And she’s created this movement around own your own data, and it’s an anti-Facebook pitch. And how can we relate that to social media? Is there a way to basically leverage this new technology to still have the social graph, but be able to own your own data at the same time?

David Vorick: Yeah, I think there is. And really what we care about with the social graph is sharing things with our friends. And of course, so we’re online, our friends are online and if we have a platform like Sia where we can put data, or where we can share data with each other, I think you can see that Facebook isn’t strictly a necessary part of being social. So I do think that with these decentralized technologies coming out, there are ways that we can replace not just Facebook, but Twitter, Reddit, YouTube, Instagram, with decentralized versions of these applications that don’t allow a company like Facebook to gain access to our lives and to control what we see.

Bill Barhydt: Yeah, and how does the user experience most likely manifests itself, right? I mean, the idea of owning your own key to your own data for a computer scientist like yourself or myself is very compelling, right? It’s complete ownership and agency over your life. Again, very compelling. But the user experience around that, in terms of what happens if I lose my keys, how do I actually access the information when I’m on the move? It’s very daunting.

Bill Barhydt: So how do you think that plays itself out over time?

David Vorick: Yeah, so I kind of see, I think we’ve demonstrated as a society that we’re very good about keeping certain important items on us at all times. For example, our cell phones and our credit cards, I think are two items that really don’t have trouble following us as we travel throughout the day and throughout the world.

David Vorick: And so I think that we’re going to either adapt the cellphone to include something related to our keys or pick up another card, like another credit card that has our keys on it and our identity on it. And then we’ll also, like what happens if you lose it? If you lose a credit card, you have a process to go get a new credit card, generally involving a bank.

David Vorick: I actually think it’s pretty reasonable, that some combination of a bank, a safe deposit box, or maybe like a family lawyer, they would have everything that you need to reconstruct a new identity if you lose your card. And you could just, same thing with the credit card, you invalidate the old one, you announce the new one. I do think that it’s early and we don’t have these tools yet. But I see us getting to a point where a decentralized identity is comfortable and familiar and has a similar UX to items that are already super important to us, and that we always have on us.

Bill Barhydt: So it’s almost like what you’re saying is, that the third party that you trust may be the one backing up your credentials, as opposed to the data itself. Because ultimately, if you lose the phone, you got to go back to your wireless carrier to get your IMEI on a new SIM card. And if you lose your credit card, you got to basically call up your bank or the card issuer to get a new card. And that just may be the access point into this decentralized world.

Bill Barhydt: So it’s an interesting twist on how a lot of people have been thinking about this, because ultimately, even though we tout this issue of owning your own keys, at Abra the reality is, most of our users, even the people listening to this really just aren’t there yet, in terms of owning their own keys. Some are, we have many, many users who believe in it.

Bill Barhydt: Let’s take a step back and talk about Siacoin now and thank you for humoring me on these intro questions. Give me the background. Where does Siacoin come from? How did this get started? Let’s go through it step-by-step.

David Vorick: Yeah, so I would say Siacoin really comes from a background of disliking the cloud. I’ve been off of Facebook for several years and I’ve never really been comfortable with the idea of giving all of my information to Facebook, giving all my information to Google. Because I know that these are companies with ulterior motives. At the end of the day, their goal is to make money and their goal is to protect me only so far as protecting me makes me money.

David Vorick: And so really, I wanted to, my data is super important to me. I wanted to create an infrastructure or a platform where I can store my data without having to worry about the ulterior motives of the people that I’m giving the data. I wanted the platform to be inherently aligned with my goals. And so that’s really what we’re trying to do with Sia.

Bill Barhydt: How does that differ from BitTorrent or other decentralized or quasi, I don’t know if decentralized is the right term, but let’s call them sufficiently decentralized cloud storage systems?

David Vorick: Yeah. So the thing that Sia does, that I think no one else does really well, is it gives people an incentive to hold on to data that they don’t care about. So in the example of BitTorrent, a file is only going to be available on BitTorrent if a bunch of other people care about it. And so that’s really great for things like, say movies or music, because a lot of people listen to the same music and watch the same movies.

David Vorick: But if you want to put your family videos on BitTorrent, and especially if you want to put your encrypted family videos on BitTorrent, no one’s going to seed that because who cares about that data? It’s only interesting to you, and especially if it’s encrypted, it’s definitely only interesting to you.

David Vorick: But on the Sia network, you actually pay other people to hold onto it. So even though it’s encrypted, and they have no idea what data you just gave them and they don’t care about it at all, you also like put them under this contract that pays them for holding onto it. So they’re happy to hold onto it for you, because they’re getting paid. I think that’s really where we diverge from other platforms.

Bill Barhydt: Do I know as a consumer, how many nodes are actually storing a copy of each piece of the data that’s out there?

David Vorick: Yes, you do. So when you upload data to the Sia network, your node picks how many places to put the data in. And right now, if you’re just using the default, like standard client, it’s going to put your data on 30 different hosts. Each of the 30 being paid separately to hold the data. And we use something called Reed–Solomon. So this is a redundancy scheme where out of those 30 hosts, you only need 10 of them. It doesn’t matter which 10, to get your data back.

Bill Barhydt: Got you. And if I’m a host, and I assume by the way, there’s something like a hash being run on the data, versus the original upload to show the owner that the integrity of the data is such that the data that they’re hosting is correct or valid. They’re not paying for something that isn’t there.

Bill Barhydt: So if I’m a host now, and it cost me X dollars to pay for storage or buy my storage, what’s my ROI today on taking Siacoin as a payment mechanism for hosting somebody else’s data in this decentralized model?

David Vorick: Yeah, so we’re seeing on the Sia network today, the top hosts are making between $5 and $10 per month to hold onto people’s data. And we estimate that these hosts have about maybe $300 worth of infrastructure that they’re committed to holding the Sia data.

David Vorick: So in terms of like raw dollars, the Sia network is still fairly small, but I think just this year, we’ve kind of crossed the threshold where hosts are actually able to turn a profit at this point. Making $5 per month or $10 per month on a $300 investment is fairly good for hardware that’s expected to last five to seven years.

Bill Barhydt: Yeah, so basically about a two-and-a-half-year return. And then you can basically do an MPV on that it sounds like. Do you know how nodes there are out there today and how many people, individuals are storing information on those nodes?

David Vorick: Yeah, so it looks like, actually we’re pretty confident, there are about 300 nodes on the network today that are storing data. And then we estimate, this is harder to be certain, that there are about 1,000 individuals on the network that are using the storage.

Bill Barhydt: Got you. I’ve it’s really interesting. I’m going to have to start playing with this. I have so much personal data that I trust and I won’t say who, because I don’t want the hackers to basically go nuts, but that I trust various service providers. And it’s such a weak link in my life. It’s one of these things where I’m sure you guys talk about this all the time, that until somebody is hacked, they probably don’t care, or they don’t care enough about this issue, right?

Bill Barhydt: And then that begs the question, well, if I’m encrypting my information, which I’m guessing your software does, I’d like to get your take on that. But if I’m encrypting my information and uploading it to these nodes, you’re obviously saying that that’s definitely more secure than trusting a Google Drive or iCloud or Dropbox or whatever. Why is that more secure than basically just encrypting the data and putting it on that central place and then having my own password that’s impossible to guess?

David Vorick: Yeah. So we do encrypt the data before we put it up. The Sia network is a security-first mentality. And so if we don’t know how to do something securely, we just won’t enable it as a feature. So everything that we know how to do, we know how to do securely.

David Vorick: But then actually, sorry, I lost the second half of the question.

Bill Barhydt: So how do I know that this is more secure than using centralized cloud storage, where I’m just uploading encrypted data there? So even if somebody was to hack the cloud servers, they couldn’t decrypt the data.

David Vorick: Okay, yeah, so if you are encrypting the data locally, and then uploading it after you’ve encrypted it, then your data privacy is actually probably fine. The cloud isn’t going to be able to get into your data, as long as you’re using a strong encryption algorithm. The cloud isn’t going to be able to get into your data, anymore than a Sia host is going to be able to get into your data.

David Vorick: But in terms of security, the cloud provider can at any time change their terms of service, can eject you for violating terms of service, can change the prices. And so you’re kind of at the whims of what your provider is deciding for whether or not you’re going to be able to get your data back.

David Vorick: Whereas, with the Sia network, since it’s fully decentralized, there is no company that can make their decision, snap their fingers and make a decision to kick you off the network or accuse you of violating terms of service. Even though we’re the builders of the platform, we don’t have the power to force people off the platform or change how much they pay to store data on the Sia network. I think that comes with some peace of mind.

Bill Barhydt: Yeah, so how does Nebulous or Sia make money then, if there is no quote-unquote owner of the network?

David Vorick: Great question. So there’s a fee model built right into the blockchain that we use. So every time that you upload data to the Sia network, a fee gets transitioned to essentially our company. And that’s a rule of the consensus network. If you wanted to stop paying us or circumvent the fee, you’d have to go clone the Sia network, pull out the fee, and then launch a completely separate platform.

David Vorick: And the kind of idea behind this fee is that we’re building the network, we’re adding value to it. If we disappear, you stop getting new features and such. And so what we found is that all of our users are perfectly happy to pay the fee. Because they know that the value they’re getting out of us being alive is greater than the money that they paid of the fee.

Bill Barhydt: Yeah, how does it work from a blockchain perspective? If I’m accessing data and I need real-time access to my information, what are you transacting on the blockchain? And how does the performance of that relate to my ability to access my data? Because blockchains are notoriously inefficient and slow, right?

David Vorick: Yes, that’s a great question. So we do everything over layer two. So essentially, when you join the Sia network, you have to create a set of file contracts. And so right at the beginning, as you’re getting started, there is this process of downloading the blockchain, verifying it, creating transactions that go on-chain.

David Vorick: And so there’s a setup process, but once you’re set-up, these file contracts are actually state channels and payment channels. And so if you want to pay a host to download your data, that happens off-chain and that can happen instantly. And you send the host a payment packet, the host will send you back your data and it happens very quickly. Once you’re set-up, you’re never waiting for the blockchain to upload or download data, or to send data to your friends.

Bill Barhydt: Are the Sia nodes, I don’t know if I’m using the right terminology, are the Sia nodes the same notes that route the payments?

David Vorick: We call the hosts on the network, the people storing data, we call them hosts, and the host are the ones who facilitate the payment channels. So they’re the other side. And if you’re doing any sort of routing, it’ll be going through the hosts.

Bill Barhydt: This sounds a lot like Lightning, of course, and I’m guessing that is this precedes Lightning. Is there a lot of similarity there? Or, are there key differences?

David Vorick: At a very high level, they’re similar in terms of what they enable you to do. We use actually something called packetized payments. So in the Lightning network, you kind of do everything all at once, and in the Sia network you do everything in little tiny bits.

David Vorick: And so what that means for us is that it’s a lot easier for us to do a bunch of transactions at once. For example, when you download data, you’re not actually paying one host, you have to pay 10. And we can actually get better speeds if you’re paying all 30 hosts. So we might make 30 transactions in 100 milliseconds.

David Vorick: And because we use packetized payments, the technology, it’s a lot faster, and the amount of money that we can send over the network is a lot smaller. But the amount of money we need to send over the network is a lot smaller than the Lightning network. So I would say from a user level, they’re pretty similar. At the technical detail, they’re fairly different.

Bill Barhydt: I see. It’s an advantage in your case, the fact that you’re paying all the nodes because of the ability to fan out the money is easier to implement than just going to one specific person via Lightning a node. I totally get it. Interesting.

Bill Barhydt: But that is a really interesting technology that you’ve created, in order to solve a key problem within Sia. That’s very interesting. So what’s next? I guess before you answer what’s next, I think, let me narrow that a little bit. I think it’s really cool. I see the advantages.

Bill Barhydt: Realistically, how do we go from a few early adopters who just don’t like Facebook, don’t like cloud storage companies, to more mass adoption of decentralized online storage?

David Vorick: Yeah, I think there are two elements there. The first is that the technology is still a little rough around the edges. It’s not something I think my grandmother would have an easy time using or getting comfortable with. And that’s just something that the more we build and the more we iterate, it gets progressively better and better.

David Vorick: But then the other half is like, the crypto world as a whole is kind of still early and coming to term. And so we still haven’t figured out the best UX, it’s still not the case that everybody has cryptocurrency. The percentage of cryptocurrency owners in the world is very small. I think that all of this is going to have to kind of come forward together.

Bill Barhydt: And are we talking like two years, five years? What do you think is realistic here, in terms of taking this mainstream?

David Vorick: So I think if we’re defining mainstream as 50 percent of all Americans, I do think we’re probably looking at the five to 10-year range, as opposed to the two or three year range. I do think the technology still needs some work.

Bill Barhydt: Now, as much as I hate regulation, I’m wondering if you guys have seen any sign that either the existing, pending or maybe future regulation, as it would relate to overseeing a Facebook or Google or Apple or whoever, could potentially give you a head-start or a kickstart in terms of being able to promote this type of decentralized system, versus centralized systems? Have you thought about that?

David Vorick: So it’s certainly interesting to see things like the anti-trust stuff that’s coming down on Facebook. I think that really favors us, because it is a technology where trust is about control and worrying that one company has too much power and is abusing it. And we’re building a platform where nobody has power and where power cannot be abused.

David Vorick: And so I think as people think more and more about the tech monopolies that exist, legislation that comes down on them is likely favorable for us. On the other hand, you have a lot of like, know your customer and anti-money laundering regulation that it’s not intended to harm Sia. But an unfortunate side effect is that it makes it much harder for the Sia network to transact cleanly and comfortably.

David Vorick: And so it’s something we’re paying a lot of attention to. We are donors to several groups that try and help shape the law and try and fight for digital rights and digital freedom. And so right now, I would say there’s no legislation that’s super worrying at the moment. But we’re definitely paying attention and it’s something we worry about.

Bill Barhydt: Really interesting. So now, let’s talk about you for a minute. So you’re from Chicago, is that right?

David Vorick: That’s correct. Chicago suburbs.

Bill Barhydt: Cool. So I think you and I both kind of have a similar background, in terms of going, I went to what I would call one of these working-class engineering colleges. I did my undergrad at Stephens, before dropping out of Stanford. I know you went to RPI, which was always like a competing, one of those small group of competing Northeast engineering schools.

Bill Barhydt: And how did that kind of shape your vision of the world and how did you go from just wanting to be, I assume a software programmer, to somebody who is really all in, in this new decentralized world?

David Vorick: Yeah, I think, actually, I would say the student body at RPI had a huge hand in shaping my world views. And so the other students who were there, I think were really good at challenging me, especially when it came to learning how to be a good programmer and a good engineer. They were much better at just teaching and presenting challenges. We would tackle tasks together. And so I think that was much more important than a lot of what the RPI administration did.

David Vorick: I also have to mention though, we had an open-source club. And then RPI also had something called the Severino Center, which is like an entrepreneurship center. And there were several mentors at the Severino Center, who kind of opened my eyes to the world of doing startups and running companies. I think ultimately, it was a combination of our open-source club and our entrepreneurial center at RPI, that showed me that I didn’t have to go to Google, and that a comfortable engineer’s salary at Google is not the only way to live once you leave college.

Bill Barhydt: Got you. Now, did you start Siacoin before leaving RPI? Is that how far back it goes? Or did it come later?

David Vorick: Yeah, so we incorporated the company, I think one or two weeks before graduating. So I spent three years at RPI. I graduated my third year. One semester before I graduated, I actually was asking Google to let me drop out and start full time, a semester early with no degree, which Google denied. And then it was really my final semester that I started to come around a lot more to the idea of starting my own company.

David Vorick: And so I almost feel like it just happened spontaneously. But now that I have and I’ve been through the whole entrepreneurship experience, I know that it’s like a much better fit for my personality to go out and blaze your own trail and struggle with something that you have a high ownership of. I’ve been really happy that I did that.

Bill Barhydt: How many pivots have you guys had? Is it really the same kind of product platform? Or have you had to re-factor the company? Are we looking at incarnation number six of Siacoin or is this really still number one?

David Vorick: So amazingly, this is incarnation number two. It’s something we’re actually internally very proud of. When we got started in May 2014, we had certain ideas of how things were going to work. We approached a lot of the Bitcoin developers, the Bitcoin core developers for peer review. And they gave us some very sharp feedback, and we realized that we ultimately had to throw everything away. And that what we had made initially was not great.

David Vorick: So I would say that was incarnation one. We threw everything away in 2014. So we were getting rid of maybe six months of full-time work, between me and my co-founder, so it was uncomfortable. But then we sat down, we didn’t program for like a month, we just ironed out what we wanted the Sia network to look like.

David Vorick: And the product, the final result we released in November 2014, a new white paper that completely redefined what the Sia network was and how it worked. And amazingly, the white paper is still like reasonably accurate today. What is explained in the white paper is essentially how everything works today. Some of the small details are raw, but the big ideas are exactly what we’re doing five years later.

Bill Barhydt: I’m curious how you think about kind of enterprise storage. So there’s a lot of companies today that are going to Amazon and Google, Microsoft for cloud services in the enterprise. And these have become wildly profitable businesses for all three companies, right? The cost of running those cloud businesses gives them fantastic economies of scale.

Bill Barhydt: Years ago, people thought, hey, nobody’s going to trust Amazon with their corporate data. And now everyone is. Do you foresee a point where enterprises start using this type of decentralized system, where they actually don’t even know who’s potentially storing the data, which country it might be in, et cetera? Do you foresee that happening?

David Vorick: Yeah, so I will say that actually, the Sia network does give you plenty of ability to control who’s storing your data and what country it goes in, et cetera. And so in the default settings, you don’t really know, but if you want to, there are tools in the Sia ecosystem that give you these insights and also give you the ability to say, only store my data in Europe. And if you want to do that, that’s something you can.

David Vorick: But more to the point of the enterprise question, I think that something the economy and corporations and enterprise struggle with as a whole right now is analyzing systemic risk. It comes up as things blow up and people think about it more as stuff blows up. So I think a failure to analyze systemic risk was a big part of the 2008 recession.

David Vorick: And as companies are seeing more and more things like data breaches or for example, AWS went down, EC2 went down. And then like half the internet was offline, you couldn’t load images on Imgur. Some people couldn’t turn on their lights, because their smart lights had to connect to AWS before they powered on. Shoes couldn’t tie themselves anymore.

Bill Barhydt: I hadn’t heard that one before. Shoes couldn’t tie themselves.

David Vorick: It’s like this crazy thing happened. It’s one of my favorites, you can Google that, I believe it was Nike had a pair of shoes that stopped being able to tie. As things like this happen, we start to realize more and more that there are these big systemic risks attached, associated with putting all our eggs in one pot.

David Vorick: I think if we evolve as a company to treat systemic risk more seriously, and we account for risk seriously, decentralization will come forward as this shining release valve as a way to mitigate or eliminate risk by moving, not just to Sia, but to Bitcoin or to stablecoins or to other decentralized systems, who entire like reason for being is to eliminate risk. And so I would present Sia as, it’s a platform that its whole goal is to clear these risks away.

Bill Barhydt: So I get that, that makes sense. What about just the path to companies really accepting that they should trust some unknown third party to actually store the data? I mean, if everything you’re saying is true, why not just say, hey, we’re going to have a backup ourselves, that we’re going to put up offsite? And we’re just going to own it and it’s going to be totally compliant with whatever local laws we have to deal with.

David Vorick: Yeah, so I think it starts as an education challenge. And it’s not just some unknown computer, it’s some unknown computer that’s storing encrypted data that put up collateral, that has something to lose if they fail to store your data. That also is being paid, it has something to gain.

David Vorick: And so we have all these incentives and alignments in place that we have to teach people about and get them comfortable with. And we have all these fail-safes. And we have to get companies comfortable with, but it’s kind of the same thing that cloud went through. You start with this big period of education. And as you get through that, it turns from being about education to becoming instilled as common sense.

David Vorick: And so people will stop needing to know all the details, they won’t need to know about the incentives or understand exactly why it’s safer. They’ll just know, based on experience, based on expert review, based on having seen that the system has been working for 10 years with no issues, it’ll become common sense that Sia or decentralization is the safer way to do things. And in this specific case of Sia, which is not true for all blockchain applications, it also helps that we’re faster, have better uptime and about an order of magnitude less expensive than centralized alternatives.

Bill Barhydt: Okay, so let’s segue that into where you really see all this going. So let’s say that we’re five years out. What do you foresee happening here? I mean, do you foresee a renaissance of decentralization in all aspects of people’s lives online? Or, do you still see centralized monoliths that are running the world and owning everything? Do you see an undoing of the status quo?

David Vorick: Yeah, I think five years out, what we’ll see is the first big decentralized applications starting to gain substantial traction. And maybe not enough to be called mainstream, but enough that everybody on Wall Street is thinking about it, and is seeing the shift that’s coming.

David Vorick: And so I think we’re still going to see these big centralized monoliths have control in five years, but the world will have clued in at that point, that like the tides are turning, and that it’s going to go away. I think if we look 10 years down the line, I see, people probably aren’t aware that they’re now on decentralized platforms. But kind of the same thing that Linux took over the server world, almost every website in the world runs on an open-source platform. It will also be the case that every payment in the world is going to happen over a decentralized payment network. It’s going to be powerful enough that all the infrastructure builders are going to strongly prefer the decentralized solution. It’s just going to be how the world works at one point.

Bill Barhydt: So what’s the short-term killer app that you think the world needs, that would take advantage of these decentralized systems that you’re most excited about?

David Vorick: I mean, honestly, I’m most excited about Sia, and some of the storage stuff we have coming out. I think by the end of 2020, it’s going to be possible to build say a decentralized YouTube or a decentralized medium, or even a decentralized Zencaster on the Sia network, and I think that’s what I’m personally most excited about, is making that available for people.

Bill Barhydt: I think that’s awesome. Do the content providers, the studios, the music publishers, do they ever come to you guys to actually talk about creating their own services or understand where the world is going? Or, are you guys still a little too far ahead of the curve at this point?

David Vorick: Yeah, so we’ve had a few conversations. I think that whenever we’re talking to a larger company, like say a Dropbox or like a music studio, it comes down to scale and technology maturity. And they want to see more total storage on the network. They want to see more total users.

David Vorick: But the fun thing about that is that we’ve been growing, for the past nine months now, we’ve been experiencing about 20 percent growth per month. So you draw that out over another year of timeframe, and I think we will have hit the scales and the maturity that these platforms are looking for. So definitely, they’re aware of it. But they’re not certain that they can believe in it yet, is what I would say.

Bill Barhydt: I’m thinking out loud here, but it seems like the logical path to get there is almost academic, right? So going to CERN and MIT and all of the other big research institutions that create, IBM even, that create the most content and say, let’s create, instead of the web itself, where you’re basically just hosting on Amazon like everyone else or running servers in your lab with CS students, let’s basically develop this shared, global resource that truly is decentralized. And show the world that we can do that using something like Sia, so that later on there’s a showcase for the next version of Netflix or YouTube or whatever decentralized consumer service wants to do something like this, but maybe not be the first. Is that a realistic path forward?

David Vorick: Yeah, I think so. And I can say from experience that we have seen, for example, we have talked to CERN, we’ve talked to other academic institutions. And they have this nice problem of data that they need to share. Also, they don’t have a ton of money. So they need a cheap way to store it. And then they also need some platform that allows the data to stick around once they disappear, if the data is useful to other people.

David Vorick: And Sia is like at an interesting nexus of all three, as well as just being better or a healthier way for society to exist. So I do think that that is like a viable avenue for getting things off the ground.

Bill Barhydt: So what would you need from the public or from, let’s call this a call to arms, right? I mean, what do you need in terms of help or support to get something like that going?

David Vorick: Yeah, so I think that it really needs more attention. And this is not just Sia, but the crypto space as a whole, really needs more attention from developers who are willing to try things out, willing to provide feedback, willing to do something in a way that nobody in crypto has done before. Take some ideas from their background and their industry and apply it to crypto.

David Vorick: I think a lot of people don’t realize how young of an industry crypto is, and how many ideas that might be obvious in the financial sector, obvious in the bio sector, we just never have come across those ideas. And so, I think we’re still really looking for builders at this point to enter the space, and to bring their ideas and to just try things out. I think that would help a lot.

Bill Barhydt: So if I’m one of those builders and I want to use the decentralized storage medium to create the killer academic network, where would I go to find out more information, get started, start seeing what I can build, what’s out there today with tools like Sia?

David Vorick: Yeah. So on the Sia network specifically, I think there are two big resources available. The first is our website, which is sia.tech. And that’s where you’re going to find a good intro to the platform. And if you go to sia.tech/docs, you’ll see the API for Sia. So you’ll understand how to interact with it. And what you need to do to build an application that’s based on Sia.

David Vorick: And then the other place that I think has been super valuable for newcomers to the Sia network is our Discord. So discord.gg/sia is a chatroom community essentially, of people who work with the technology every day, who build up applications on top of the technology, who use it and run it, and who know the ecosystem, and can really help you get started with the Sia network and answer questions and such.

Bill Barhydt: Fantastic. So, look, I love what you’re doing. I think it’s fantastic for the ecosystem. We’re thrilled that Sia is part of the Abra network. Our users can deposit and withdraw and exchange between all of our currencies and Siacoin. So thank you for your contributions to the community. And we will continue to do our part to make people aware of Sia and the project and hopefully, this will lead to more and bigger and better opportunities for everyone in the ecosystem. So, thank you so much for your contributions.

David Vorick: Thank you, and we’re super excited to be involved. Super excited that you’ve incorporated us into your ecosystem. And, yeah, we want to see the world move forward.

Bill Barhydt: Thank you so much. So, David Vorick, CEO and co-founder of Nebulous and Siacoin, thank you so much for joining Abra’s Money 3.0 podcast and we’ll call it there. That’s a wrap for another episode of Money 3.0.

Thanks, everyone for joining and we will see you very soon. Have a great day.

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