Who are the validators?

I think it’s important to open a channel of communication between community members and validators and after talking with @uxt I’ve decided to start this discussion :smiley:.

I’m a validator and for anyone who hasn’t seen me posting here and there, my name is Laura and I’ve been part of the Enigma Collective since June of 2019 after graduating from Udacity’s Blockchain Developer program. I have a day job plus the work I do for the Enigma team.

I’m very passionate and committed to the Enigma protocol, the core team, the Collective and the broader community. I want to see Enigma Chain be successful and fulfill the promise of blockchain privacy that’s so important to adoption, in addition to feeling like data privacy is more important than ever.

I have voted for Proposal 2 to “Unify the Community” and am participating in technical discussions on how to do the asset transfer from ENG to SCRT. I have stayed out of the economics part because that’s not in my wheelhouse.

It’s my sincere hope that we’re able to come together and move forward on the new Enigma Chain. I think all stakeholders are important and have a role to play (community, core team, validators). And I want everyone to feel like they have a voice in the governance of the network.

laura

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Thank you @laura, it’s great to meet you. It sounds like you’re a perfect representative and I’m glad to hear you’re a validator. You’re right that data privacy is so important and just getting more important day by day. It sounds like you’ve already done a lot to help Enigma.

Thank you for your introduction and I look forward to hearing your thoughts and the communities input going forward.

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Thank you, @uxt! I look forward as well.

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@laura
Thanks for coming forward as i myself am trying to find out who the validators are and how to become one.
Any idea on who else are validators as currently the enigma community only has this way to communicate with any validators on-chain governance.

Since this is becoming more community driven, i am trying to get more details on how to participate here.

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Hi all !

I’m Dan from ChainofSecrets.org - we are one of the validator’s for the enigma chain.
I’ve been around the Enigma community since 2017 from when I first heard of the project.
I feel strongly about data privacy and data ownership. Since joining the Enigma Collective as ChainofSecrets, I have made some great progress on forging adoption of the Enigma Protocol through University curriculum.
ChainofSecrets.org’s plan as validator isn’t just to sit there and receive votes to keep getting rewards for ROI. We are here to take the reward funding commission we get from our voters and inject it back into the community by building Enigma Dapp’s. We want to bring more value to Enigma while we are Validators for the chain and this is our way of doing so.

How will we achieve this?

These Privacy Dapp’s will be built through University scholarships. We were in the final stages of committing to our University of choice before the chain made a change from ETH to Cosmos/SDK.
We are now working hard to put together a new proposal in cooperation with this university to reflect the new changes that have happened with the protocol.

Anyone is welcome to Suggest a Privacy Dapp to build, as we will give our voters that opportunity to pick the “next projects”. We are currently open to new Privacy Dapp ideas to push onto students to complete.
We are available on our Telegram to chat about any questions or concerns the community may have.

Thanks,
Dan

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Hello everyone!

I’m Ian. I’ve been actively researching and participating in the cryptocurrency industry since 2011 when I started a cryptocurrency mining company. Years later in 2017 I participated in the Enigma ICO and have been building secretnodes.org up for a while now. I primarily came for the nodes, computations over encrypted data, and mission around privacy. I have zero interest in the politics around voting. @Brendan and myself have raised a modest amount of funding to support this ecosystem (not pay ourselves) along with other privacy-centric projects, the initial distribution of SCRT helps both myself and my business partner to continue the work we’ve already been doing. As you may have noticed my tenacity is boundless, so as long as secretnodes.org exists, we will continue to add value where we think it’s most critical in the enigma ecosystem.

I also wanted to say that I do not represent all the validators personally. I am merely the one who proposed we unify through a token swap as I view any scenario where no token swap occurs as an existential threat that divides what we’ve all worked towards.

I’m looking forward to updating the educational resources to empower node runners and further decentralize Enigma in the coming weeks. In the meantime feel free to join us in the secretnodes telegram room.

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Hi Mohammed!

(No, I don’t know who all of the validators are)

I think this is the best resource for now to answer your questions on how to become a validator: https://blog.enigma.co/the-enigma-mainnet-has-launched-3bd0d40fe80d

In the meantime, before the swap happens, you can learn about launching a Cosmos validator and also run a full Enigma Chain node so you’ll be ready to go…

Once you get SCRT tokens, you can launch a validator node and do the staking transaction. The number of validators is capped at 50, but as I understand it, that can change through proposals and voting.

I hope this helps a bit. I know it’s tough right now to just sit and wait :frowning: . Its early days for Enigma Chain and I wish I had more answers for you.

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@laura
@moonstash
@dbriggsie
@guy
@can
@tor
@victor
@ainsley

Thank you all for replying and introducing yourselves. As you all probably can see the last two weeks have caused a lot of confusion and disappointment in the community, especially for long time enigma supporters like myself. Many of us have been here since 2017 supporting the team, purchasing computers for nodes and preparing for the genesis games. Since 2017 we have been extremely patient as we have seen the team pivot, redirect, postpone and even cancel initially proposed features or parts of the project. We have been fed the proverbial “soon” and “imminent” only to have a release or feature be delayed 6 or 12 months. Despite the lack of transparency and perennial excuses, we have given the enigma team the benefit of doubt. We understand that developing a new denovo technology is extremely challenging and roadblocks will be encountered leading to delays and pivots. However, It has been nearly 3 years since ico and and there is no working private computation network. After reviewing the current github code and the recent revelation from the WASM representative that we are still far from WASM integration, some developers and community members believe we are still 1-2 years out before we can achieve enigma’s original plan of a distributed general purpose private computation network. We have heard the “we are close”, “waiting on partners”, “we are adding new features” narrative for Almost 3 years and therefore believe that the 6 month time frame for secret contract integration is unrealistic.

The community is being asked to participate in a swap from eng to scrt. However, the community was not asked to participate in the decision of the terms for the swap. Terms which at face value, appear to be incredibly unfavorable to community members and raise a lot of concerns. I will outline Some of the concerns below.

  1. While the team is extremely gifted and has a positive vision for a decentralized privacy focused future, they have also shown incompetence and disorganization resulting in no working decentralized private computation protocol in 3 years (5years is you count guy’s thesis). We believe that moving forward, the team has to demonstrate significant changes in its management in order to gain trust from the community. We need to be sure that they will be able to achieve what they propose in a timely manner. We believe that most of miss steps and misdirections occurred due to lack of experience and lack of management skills. Keeping things as-is will not reassure the community. Change is needed, more of the same will not cut it.
    Proposed solution - Hire An experienced and successful product manager will help keep guide the team to appropriately position themselves in the market and Expeditiously launch their product.

  2. 48 million tokens - The team has already received $45 million from the ico, and thus far has not delivered a working product in 3 years. The track Record from the team and recent developments, does not warrant community blind trust. After all, we believe in blockchain technology due to its trustless property. Unrestricted access to 48 million tokens and veto control of the network, is not very reassuring given the teams track record.
    Proposed Solution 1 - setting up a lock up period of the funds to be released at set intervals in 2022, 2024, 2026. This will ensure the team will be motivated to continue working on the network. This will also ensure that the team won’t dump the tokens and jump ship. Furthermore, if the team does leave, we will have tokens available to fund future developers to work on the network. Proposed solution 2 - setting up a lock up of the funds to be released once milestones of the roadmaps are reached. The release of the funds will be approved with a 51% vote by the validators.

  3. Inflation and rewards - we have supported enigma for 3 years with the understanding that we hold a fixed supply token. There are significant tax benefits to holding a fixed supply token vs an inflationary token. The current scheme proposal is 15% inflation. Reward = inflation / %staked
    Enigma code shows 15% inflation and 67% staked goal
    Reward = 22% = 0.15/0.67
    ROI = 22%-15% = 7%

The problem with this scheme is that:

  • People will have to pay 30-40% taxes on the rewards as earned income.
  • If We sell tokens to pay the income tax, We will have to pay additional capital gains taxes. This will basically erase most of the roi and disincentive the network. We are getting screwed twice by this inflationary scheme.
  • Additionally, the higher the inflation, the more taxes we pay. (40% income earned tax is higher than 15% capital gains tax)
  • if we follow cosmos model where staking has increased to 73% of the network, our roi drops from 7% to 5%, making staking even less profitable. This then may motivate the network to a 20% inflation in order to maintain the 7% roi, but then we would be having to pay more taxes because our rewards will be greater but our roi remains the same.

Proposed solution 1 - make a fixed maximum amount of total network that can be staked. If you fix the total amount that can be staked to 60%. This 60% should be comprised of the the top 60% of wallets. This will allow you to drop the inflation down to 10% and still maintain a 7% roi. This will also motivate people to buy more tokens to reach the 60% threshold and stake for the 7% roi. This will also lower the tax burden.
Proposed solution 2 - drop the inflation significantly to 5-7%. This will allow token price to appreciate more and we would have to pay less taxes. We rather pay capital gains tax than earned income tax.

I hope this has shed some light on some of the concerns that community members have had. We all aspire to have a privacy preserving decentralized future. It is in our collective interest to keep the community together and move forward after this difficult time. We hope that these concerns are addressed and our solutions are implemented for the unity of the community.

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Hello @Cryptojoe, I am part of the community too, and I disagree when you say inflation increases taxes. You have to pay tax on your overall benefits not on the number of token you hold.

In all cases the team is not responsible for any laws regarding taxation which are very different depending on where tokenholders currently live.

I feel the goal for this community is to find ways that work in the best interest towards the network long term success, as an investor you will only make money if the network starts be succesful.

I think the team should hard focus on the development side of their project and not worry too much about comments driven by price speculation while the community and the validators should spend their time focusing on how to get that tokenswap done

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Thanks for the time you put into this @Cryptojoe. We’ll be looking at these suggestions as we move forward through the swap process. Those working on this process are being careful to account for the needs of all stakeholders, this includes the Enigma Team, validators, and the holders. Keeping in mind many of the validators are very much also first and foremost people who are undeniably members of the community. We are cautious of handing over too much power to a large exchange with a swap higher than 1:1 and mindful of the fact 1:1 already dilutes the teams ENG holdings.

Some things you need to understand at this juncture.

  1. Lockup periods are not and will not ever be apart of any swap proposal we put forward.

  2. Inflation or any potential max supply will not ever be apart of any swap proposal we put forward. (Except, potentially / exclusively to the extent required to mint new tokens)

I don’t have many other comments right now on your suggestions. The swap proposal is exclusively focused on the details of a swap. Any of the other things you suggested must be proposed by a validator separately as they will not be included in the swap proposal.

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Thanks @Cryptojoe for these comments.

I think some of these concerns aren’t on topic for this post, and in any case, a lot of your concerns seem to revolve around legal considerations that we unfortunately can’t comment on.

That said, I’d like to specifically address your concerns around development and timelines. To me, it sounds like you’re trying to have your cake and eat it too. On the one hand, you’re asking for more transparency. While on the other, as we’re pushing ourselves to provide that transparency (e.g., by having day-to-day product/tech conversations happen in the open), you’re rushing to far-reaching conclusions about the long term implications. Can’t have both.

Long story short, we’re committed to as much transparency as possible moving forward, but we’re not planning to let it slow us down (e.g., by responding to baseless interpretations about how this affects our timeline). However, this time specifically, I am going to respond. I don’t see how you or anyone interpreted Ethan’s message to say we are 1-2 years away from secret contracts. Nothing along those lines was said or discussed. We’re still evaluating things and when we know, you’ll know.

The only thing one can interpret really from his message is that if we propose secret contracts before an API-stable version of CosmWasm is available (and we are using it), the network will need to choose in the future whether it wants to have a painful hardfork (including breaking contract changes) or stick to the current version. This was always the case…

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Hello all. Seeing as Laura has gone to the trouble of starting this thread I thought that it was time I poked my head above the parapet and identify myself as one of the validators on this first iteration of Enigma’s mainnet. It is fantastic to see this happen, even if the manner in which it has come about is not what most of us were expecting!

To be completely honest with you I’ve been lurking on the forums somewhat over the last couple of weeks just soaking it up and seeing what the mood is. Whenever a dramatic change like this occurs out of the blue, it’s bound to cause a lot of uncertainty in people’s minds, and to lead to a lot of speculation as to reasons behind certain decisions, motivations going forward etc. All of which is compounded by the restriction on the team’s ability to comment on any of it, or even to talk about why why the can’t comment on it. And I really don’t know any more about what is going on than most of the other voices on the various Telegram groups.

I am in no way connected to the team, even in a peripheral way. I don’t know any of the Enigma team personally or professionally and have never met any of them, nor have I ever met any of the other node runners. I bought ENG during the ICO and have been steadily accumulating ever since (inc. at $6… ) So I’m really just another bagholder / dude on Telegram. I’m hoping that many of you will find this reassuring in terms of the decentralization of the network.

I know that some of the other Validators are professional node runners and have their nodes set up on enterprise grade hardware. I am not in that category and am just running my node on a machine at home that I bought last year in anticipation of the Genesis Game. When Ainsley put the shout out on the forums towards the end of last year asking for people to help stress test and troubleshoot the networked testnet, I put my hand up and got involved particularly as I already had my SGX enabled machine standing by for the Genesis Game. I successfully got a couple of iterations of testnet secret node up and running, and it was that and only that which seems to have qualified me as an early participant in the mainnet when it launched on Cosmos. I was surprised as everyone else to hear that I’d received 100,000 SCRT and had no advance warning that this was going to happen.

I can appreciate why some people might perceive the distribution of 100k a piece of a new token to some people as being in some way unfair. But the fact is that the network needed bootstrapping some how, initially with a limited number of nodes. And having the criteria for those nodes be the proven ability to run a testnet node and nothing more, nothing less, seems a pretty unbiased and sensible way to have got the thing off the ground.

I also realise that it’s difficult for me to sound completely objective about things now that I’ve landed myself in the fortunate position of being one of the early validators. But I can assure you that going forward I intend to do everything I can make this work, motivated in part by my currently worthless SCRT. But mainly by the larger bag of ENG that I have bought with my own hard earned cash over the last three years, just like many of you. Given that most people reading this post will be ENG holders, it’s in everyone’s interest to ensure that the network is a success and that the community are able to orchestrate a swap from the ENG security to the decentralised SCRT utility token, so that as many of us as possible can start staking on the network. I hope that we can all work together to help make that happen as quickly and securely as possible.

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Income tax is taxed at a much higher rate than capital gains tax. 40% vs 15%. Yes it lowers the roi if I’m paying 40% taxes on an inflation based system vs 15% on a fixed supply system. If the return on investment is extremely low or nonexistent for USA token holders, it will be hard to decentralize the network. The return on investment need to be sufficient to make things work.

Hi Everyone,

I’m one of the current validators of the new Enigma consensus chain. I’ve been around for a few years waiting to run a node. When Ainsley sent out the call for volunteers, I jumped at the chance. I’ve been fortunate enough to help with a few different versions of the testnet and now mainnet.

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Hey guys, I’m a validator too, perhaps because I also have the privilege of being Laura’s sidekick on dev support.

Like some of you I came for the ico, and at the time I knew very little about blockchains that I didn’t gloss over in whitepapers, but I heard the call for privacy then.
Nowadays I write smart contracts and other blockchainy things for food, and I feel the need for privacy now.

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Joe some decent points here. I know there have been discussions around taxes in Cosmos. Check out the following thread and the linked twitter thread:

Jimmy, I think most people are aware of the need for bootstrapping the network, and don’t consider the distribution of SCRT for those purposes as unfair. What left a bad taste in so many mouths was that because of the announcement of the genesis game (which was announced on official announcement channels in discord, telegram, medium articles, you name it), a lot of people bought hardware and a significant amount of ENG in expectation that they would be able to help test. Then after getting the node set up, they were told to shut down and wait for the announcement that the game will begin. Instead of the call for testers going to discord’s general announcement channel, or even the node announcement channel (or other channels used to tell people that they could help test if they have at least 25k ENG), it went to side channels where a very much smaller number of people were able to see it. So a bunch of people that were excited about getting to take part, willing to help others along the journey (I think you were even one of the guys I helped get their sgx driver loaded), and who had already invested significant time and money to prepare for it, all of a sudden hear that it already took place semi-privately.

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Hi @baedrik, thanks for sharing your thoughts. Our development team is greatly indebted to the Enigma community and deeply thankful for its patience and support as we continue this journey together. We are committed to being accountable through intentionally transparent collaboration.

In his recent letter to the Enigma community, @guy said one option our team has been exploring is an incentivized testnet for secret contracts. As mentioned, we are continuing to develop and research secret contract functionality that will necessitate the use of Trusted Execution Environments (TEEs) like Intel SGX. Given this significant change, it makes sense to run multiple testnets before the introduction of this functionality to the mainnet Enigma protocol.

We know that there are many members of the community who were looking forward to the Genesis Game and acquired hardware to become long-term node operators for Enigma. We’d like to hear your thoughts about a potential incentivized testnet period, including any ideas and feedback you may have. Our goal is to see if there’s widespread community interest. Below is the link to a form where you can express interest and provide feedback, and so that we can be in touch with you directly.

Incentivized Testnet Form

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