If you want to learn more about crypto, investments, new projects, the market, and the blockchain industry, this podcast is for you! Don’t miss our weekly MSV interviews and roundtable covering exciting topics and conversations. Ensure to subscribe not to miss an episode. Enjoy!
Interview: BitsCrunch - Vijay Pravin
Combatting Fraud with AI nad Data
Guest: Vijay Pravin, Founder and CEO of BitsCrunchHost: Szabolcs Gergely, Podcast & YouTube Host at Morningstar Ventures
Top 3 Takeaways from Our Guest:
1. bitsCrunch helps clients be compliant with AI as the underlying technology.
To kick off the interview, we asked Vijay why bitsCrunch is an asset to the crypto industry. Vijay highlighted one of the most common but overlooked aspects that slows adoption and institutional integration – Fraud! bitsCrunch, with AI as the underlying technology, offers monitoring and checking transactions and asset authenticity to ensure that users and companies get what they pay. They monitor the market and the transactions and flag any suspicious activities like wash trading to ensure that the price of an asset is not artificially increased and users will get the value they are paying for.
2. bitsCrunch will offer services for users and companies alike.
Vijay explained that although bitsCrunch services sound like the target customers are companies, users can also benefit from it. In the case of a company, while with their easy-to-integrate API big volume data can be monitored, helping in filtering malicious activities and projecting upcoming trends, dedicated platforms will also be put in place for single users. He mentioned that, for example, the Unleash NFT platform will allow people to check the authenticity of the NFT they want to buy.
3. bitsCrunch will continue to monitor the Metaverse.
Toward the end of the interview, one of our audience members asked if bitsCrunch would also work in the Metaverse. Although there is no current plan to be in the Metaverse, Vijay stated that, given their product capability along with being an active “investigator” of transactions, markets, and activity, they aim to be present in the Metaverse with a sharp focus on upcoming cross-chain transactions and cross-community game activities of player to provide gaming studios accurate data about their gamers preferences to improve the services they offer.
Interview: Fusionist - Ike T.
The Next Generation Gaming
Guest: Ike T., CEO of Fusionist Host: Szabolcs Gergely, Podcast & YouTube Host at Morningstar Ventures
Top 3 Takeaways from Our Guest:
1. “Data ownership is not the most important element of Web3 Gaming”.
We kicked off the Twitter Spaces by asking Ike about the importance of data ownership for Web3 gamers. Ike explained he doesn’t think data ownership in gaming is very important because, according to his gaming experience, fun, and enjoyability is the key factor for gamers to continue playing – which is an element many Web3 game producers are still trying to navigate and integrate into their games.
2. “In the future, Layer 1 and Layer 2 infrastructures will support complex Web3 games.”
The conversation then dove deeper into the complexity of games and whether blockchain infrastructures can support them. Ike explained that at the moment, blockchain infrastructures will not be able to support a fully complex game and will need to be built on both Web2 and Web3.
For example, Fusionist is not built 100% on the blockchain and consists of Web2 elements. This was a conscious decision, as it was necessary for the game to compete with already existing traditional games. In the future, Ike believes that various Layer 1 or 2 infrastructures will be capable of hosting complex games, however, as at the moment, games need to be built on both traditional technologies and blockchain to ensure a smooth user experience.
3. “Fusionist welcomes new users to join and engage with its community”
To close off, Ike welcomed new users to engage with the Fusionist ecosystem. All one has to do is create an account and earn tokens by playing the game. Some smaller parts of the game, called exhibitions, are live and ready for play. The game is currently in the test phase, but will soon be released on Steam for everyone to enjoy.
Roundtable: Web3 Adoption in Developing Countries
Justin Colón, Head of Community at Ancient8Alper Çimik, CMO of Coin MuhendisiAbhinav Pathak, Research Partner at Woodstock Fund Three Key Takeaways from Our Guests:
1. “Emerging markets are embracing innovation, given their growing economic nature”
We started the conversation by asking our guests why cryptocurrency is significant in their local communities. In Vietnam, it's embraced due to being an emerging market with a sizable unbanked population. Additionally, the tech-savvy environment and a robust community of blockchain developers contribute to its popularity. India ranks second in crypto adoption due to its fast-growing economy, mobile-first approach, affordable internet, and widespread digital payment adoption across generations and income classes. Integrating NFTs is expected to engage further and monetize Indian users. In Turkey, the thriving crypto community drives numerous events and adoption efforts, prioritizing community engagement.
2. “Regulation will affect people positively, but there is still a long way to go”
Considering the current rules and regulations, we wanted to hear our guests' thoughts on what's good and bad about them. All our guests agreed that regulations in their areas are moving positively. However, there are still many different rules in different countries and some unclear areas that governments need to sort out so that blockchain can be used for various purposes. The speakers also think it's important for countries to work together globally to ensure blockchain is open for everyone, not just limited to one region.
3. “Education and making products relatable will help global blockchain adoption”
To close the roundtable, we inquired about the main barriers to Web3 adoption in our guests' respective countries. All our guests agreed that education and user familiarity with the systems they engage with are key factors. They emphasized the importance of ensuring that the products are relatable to users through localization, encompassing all languages, and ensuring accessibility. Additionally, they highlighted the need for government support for both startups and users to enhance the appeal of blockchain. Another factor currently impacting adoption is the bear market, with the hope that we may witness increased adoption during a bull market.
Interview: Chainflip - Simon Harman
The Cross-Chain Revolution
Guest: Simon Harman, CEO & Co-Founder of ChainflipHost: Szabolcs Gergely, Podcast & YouTube Host at Morningstar Ventures
Top 3 Takeaways from Our Guest
1. Chainflip is a fully native cross-chain DEX.
At the start of the interview, Simon explained that Chainflip functions as a swap solution rather than a bridge. It adopts a similar approach to centralized exchanges, with its distinctive feature being the involvement of 150 independent validators distributed globally within the vault. This design choice ensures a high degree of decentralization for the swap process. The architecture of Chainflip also addresses the issue of elevated gas fees on the Ethereum blockchain. While it doesn't directly decrease these fees, users of Chainflip are exempt from paying gas fees for the actual swap. Their only financial commitment lies in the transaction fee incurred when transferring funds from their wallet to Chainflip's vault in preparation for the swap. In essence, Chainflip goes beyond a mere bridge and can be better described as a "fully native cross-chain DEX."
2. User-friendliness and simplified onboarding will accelerate DEX onboarding.
We asked Simon how decentralized exchanges (DEX) can get more market share. He shared that DEXs are becoming more user-friendly lately, while CEXs are becoming a bigger hassle to set up with increased KYC and verification processes. Nevertheless, he doesn’t think DEXs will completely take over, as buying crypto with Fiat is only possible using a CEX. On the other hand, crypto-to-crypto swaps will predominantly be processed on DEXs. Simon gives the example of Uniswap, which improves its interface and simplifies the user experience for new members. Efforts, as such, might accelerate the rate at which people switch from CEX to DEX in the future.
3. Comprehensive market scans help Chainflip select prime chains for their ecosystem.
Finally, Simon explained that the team is constantly scanning the market. This helps them choose which new chains to add to their ecosystem. The main goal is to ensure they can save money for users. Implementing a chain on Chainflips ecosystem only makes sense if they can offer the users a way to save on gas fees or better prices. For example, implementing Phantom wouldn’t make sense as the on-chain liquidity is not big enough. However, they believe Chainflip will significantly impact the Solana network with prices and gas fees; therefore, that is where most of the focus goes.
Roundtable: DeFi - Navigating The Future Of Finance
Ian Estrada, Co-founder of XLD FinanceMichael Eerhart, CPO at Skynet TradingAhmed Serghini, Co-founder of Hatom Protocol
Three Key Takeaways from Our Guests:
1. “There is still a lack of tooling in the DeFi space”
We kicked off the spaces by asking our guests about the state of DeFi in the industry. The guests shared that the user experience offered by DeFi apps still needs improvement, which many projects are trying to improve daily. Another trend that the speakers have been seeing is that liquidity has been sparse in decentralized exchange ever since the FTX scandal. Furthermore, DeFi did see a surge in use after the FTX scandal. However, that has subsided almost 1 year after the event, and we see more people returning to centralized exchanges as if nothing ever happened. Finally, the lack of tooling in the DeFi space is another hurdle to overcome, and once that happens, we will see more DeFi adoption from institutions.
2. “Projects need to react to a fast-changing regulatory environment”
When asked about regulation, our guests agreed it could impact the crypto industry in two ways – at the project level and user acquisition and retention level. One way regulators can essentially “choke” DeFi is by restricting the onramp and offramp processes, which would hinder the transition from fiat to crypto. If this were to happen, then there might not be any real-world value to the assets classifying them as computer money.
Projects must react to regulation, and our guests say this could happen in two ways. However, there might also be other people in the DeFi space that view regulation as an opportunity, as it has the potential to bring legitimacy, consumer protection, and more visibility to their projects.
3. “AI has the potential to enhance the user experience of DeFi protocols”
At the end of the session, our guests were asked by an audience member about the integration of AI in DeFi. All guests agree that AI has the potential to enhance user experience and hopefully make it easier for users to understand how some of these rather “complicated” protocols and products work. AI agents could help with trades and offer educational content on storing crypto, trading, and using various functions properly.
Interview: Apeiron - Frank Cheng
First God Game On The Blockchain
Guest: Frank Cheng, Co-founder & CEO of ApeironHost: Szabolcs Gergely, Podcast & YouTube Host at Morningstar Ventures
Top 3 Takeaways from Our Guest
1. Aperion’s mission is to grow its gameplay and create a franchise continuously.
The interview started by diving deeper into understanding the most important aspects of building a God-Game on the blockchain. Frank explained that he started building a game because, as a gamer, he felt that the games on the market were unfinished – they were missing something. Therefore, he created a game that is not only a game but a franchise. He elaborates on cross-chain interoperability between games and emphasizes that he wants Apeiron players to experience playing a game where they can explore different worlds and not just finish a specific journey to move on to the next level.
2. Aperion is focusing on attracting more mobile gamers.
When asked about the difference between Web2 and Web3 gaming communities, Frank explained that Apeiron’s current major focus is attracting more mobile gamers. Especially those who show an interest in crypto. Frank believes Aperion has an advantage over Web2 games as competition is too high, whereas Aperion is still the first god-gam built on the blockchain. Comparatively, Web 2 gamers will need more convincing to start playing blockchain-based games, as PC gamers are the most loyal community members and require exceptional games to switch over to a new one.
3. “The Metaverse will someday allow players to travel between virtual countries”.
The metaverse is an important topic within gaming. Frank shared his opinion on what the future of the metaverse will hold and thinks that even though the metaverse is not “popular” as it was one year ago, it will still be seen in gaming. He also thinks there will be only one metaverse, and games will act as countries within that metaverse, allowing players to travel to different “virtual countries” via a passport. This way players can visit and stay for a gamer as long as they want. Frank also expanded on how helpful generative AI could be in realizing this. He believes with AI, even if the games are very different in graphics, in-game assets could be adapted to the game the player wants to play without any major update of the assets somebody holds in their wallet.