RHIZOME Interview with Lucas of Sharpn

Recently, I decided to interview Lucas of Sharpn. Sharpn is working on their first product - a dApp called “Certiv” which aims to provide a seamless and professional certification issuance experience taking place on the ICON public chain. Lucas is the Co-Founder and main developer of Sharpn and he had some great insight into the possibilities of blockchain technology, adoption, why on-boarding more developers to build on ICON is essential for increasing network usage, and more. 

Lucas, can you explain your role at Sharpn and what the underlying motivation was behind deciding to run for a P-Rep of the ICON Network?

Hi, I’m the co-founder and main developer of Sharpn, we’re a team of 5 Parisian who want to bring a new take on the Blockchain ecosystem. We were into ICON for a while but what decided us to become a P-Rep is the framework that ICON offers to DApp developers. We found in ICON a vision that corresponded to our philosophy, we want to support the aspects that we consider good for adoption.

Lucas, your proposal says “we want to bring the tools to the general public to enable widespread adoption”. Can you explain how Sharpn plans to execute on this?

We’re convinced that the next wave of successful crypto project will be the ones with a user-centered approaches., it’s the logical step of adoption. Bring the tools to the general public means a lot : spreading the decentralization culture, ease the transition for a traditional dev willing to jump into  blockchain, adapt features such as public/priv key for no-coiners audience, etc. This summarizes the philosophy we have when we build DApps. 

Blockchain is exciting for opening the field of possibilities but the sad reality is that general public will care only when it will benefit them for a minimal comprehension effort.

So, it’s to my understanding your team is currently working on your first product - “Certiv”. Can you explain more about Certiv and how it will provide a seamless professional certification issuance experience on ICON’s public chain?

Certiv is a direct application of our vision. Education is in the midst of a revolution, we are witnessing the emergence of new offers, an approach to competence and skills that is radically different. 

Unlike Broof, Certiv wants to act at the very heart of university pedagogy. We believe that the value of a profile lies in its skills, experiences, personal initiatives etc. Universities can certify their profiles through the ICON Blockchain and connect them to recruiters through a HUB. Applications can do much more: Creation of affinities between profiles, transmission of skills, etc.

This kind of DApp brings the benefits of Blockchain technology to a considerable number of no-coiners, and we don’t intend to stop there. Blockchain certification has a large number of possible applications: luxury industry, insurance, logistics, etc. So many opportunities that are just waiting to be taken. We’re planning to launch on another industries once we successfully implemented Certiv for education.

On-boarding more developers is a hard task, one that can be aided with a higher token price of a underlying protocol. With this in mind, we aim to bring developers to build on top of ICON through future tutorials around .Net. Is this something Sharpn plans to focus on? If so, how will Sharpn encourage higher network usage and on-boarding of more developers for ICON?

Aside from our DApps, we believe that the best way to develop ICON is to facilitate adoption by new developers.  All this is related to the concept of developer experience (DX). A good DX is more than precious for a DApp platform. We’re in a very competitive environment with a limited number of devs. A larger dev community organically leads to more projects, more adoption, more mutual aid and more life in the ecosystem. That’s why we decided to act on it first.

But what are we going to do in concrete terms? We have several ideas. Our project is to create a platform to promote the benefits of ICON in terms of development. Facilitate the arrival of traditional developers via educational content, convince businesses to operate under ICON, become an information point for the ICON dev… We have a lot of ideas for this platform, that probably the next Sharpn project, we will communicate on it after the final release of our staking platform!

It’s to my understanding Sharpn plans to implement a lockup period to encourage longer-term staking like some have already proposed. Can you explain what this reward model entails and the motivation behind it?

I’m glad you mentioned it because this particular point has been somewhat controversial lately. It should be noted that we have designed this rewards mechanism in the context of our staking platform.

With this platform, we want to make the communication better and more transparent between P-Reps and ICONist. During the design of this platform, we listed all ICONist profiles in order to design a tool that would be useful to everyone. We have identified an ICONist profile with untapped potential: “The casual holder”. He is a person seduced by the fundamentals of ICON, who could be very beneficial to the ecosystem, but who unfortunately does not have the opportunity to do so due to lack of time or communication.

The purpose of this policy is on the one hand to reward ICONists delegating in the long term, but also to create interaction with a target that tends to be more passive (it will lead them to our platform and make them catch up with the latest news , being in contact with other ICONist, etc.). It has also good side for the ICON price, leading for longer delegations and fewer sells.

We intend to conduct a study with Ubik with different data to analyze the benefits that such a policy would have on the ecosystem as a whole. However, we are disappointed to see abuse from some teams about this. We consider a reward model to be justifiable if:

- The team has value propositions that go well beyond fidelity rewards

- Time lockup is sufficient

- The share distributed is low, will not affect the price of ICON and leaves resources to the team

- The team has a clear distribution plan

If all the conditions are not met, it is simply an attempt to buy votes. We are iterative by nature, so in view of the recent declarations, we cannot guarantee what our reward policy will be in the future. We keep in mind the interest of the ecosystem as a whole and will be able to make the right decisions!

Closing - Thank you very much William for these questions, it has been a pleasure! We would be happy to answer any additional questions that ICONists may have on our social networks ;)

If you are interested in learning more about Sharpn or want to reach out to Sharpn, feel free to check out the links below. 

Website, Twitter, Reddit, Medium.

Additionally, you can reach out to Sharpn by e-mail at hello@sharpn.tech