We are very excited to tell you that Gameboard.Tech in Guatemala continues to grow its network of alliances. We have a new partner, a young and dynamic company led by two young enthusiasts who want to change the world and achieve a more inclusive society. Charlie Galdamez and Diego Carranza have founded KitSord, an application that teaches sign language to people who live with and/or interact with at least one person with a hearing disability. With its accessible and easily understandable content, it helps those who live or interact with the hearing impaired to meet their communication needs.
Driven by our company mission to contribute to society and to improve the situation of the country, we made a commitment to help with the app. And because we love to play, we managed to integrate a Gameboard solution.
Working together for several weeks, we developed a game design document, which analyzes the application and its players, the type of players, and what motivates them.
We analyzed the strengths of the app and created game dynamics around them. These dynamics became the moves or plays of the game. We then assigned points and created levels. This way the player goes through a process in which he progresses and receives prizes. In this case, prizes are points or keys that can be exchanged throughout the course of or at the end of the game. This motivates players to keep participating.
All of these game dynamics, and the analysis carried out, helped apply the different motivators to the app. The goal is for users to return and new players to come to use it. We want to inspire loyalty, while supporting the non-listening community throughout Latin America by teaching more people to communicate by sign language.
We are convinced that by working and promoting our values of ethical, fair and transparent conduct in business, we will achieve a better and more inclusive world.
The Slips team spent the last week working on a project plan to outline what they want to do over the next two months. As mentioned in the last update, they managed to raise a seed round a few weeks ago (in addition to the pre-seed funding they received from Expanse through the EXP Grants program). So now with added funds, the team wants to create a plan for how they will spend the money. They intend to build the shop, add voice chat and some other cool features, but they are now looking on an April timeline, during which time they are also hoping to raise their Series A round of financing.
Kyle recently moved to San Francisco and has been speaking with investors and other potential stakeholders about Slips. Husain is currently sorting his arrangements for the move and will be joining Kyle next week. The reaction they have received so far has been amazing, and it seems that there’s a lot of appetite in Silicon Valley for a product like Slips.
The team has also finalized deals with a number of parties, e.g., the developers they were working with last year are on board again, (which was a big deal for continuity’s sake!), and they’ve also got some marketing lined up so people will start to use Slips in the next few weeks.
Slips also plans to introduce Tokenlab to the community they are working with to promote Slips, so this is definitely good news for LAB stakeholders. The team is busy with lots of behind-the-scenes work, which is extremely complicated (legal, shop compliance, etc.). This is primarily what is holding up the official release of Slips.
The Slips team has still not sorted all the bugs out, but it’s getting closer. They need more volunteers to do test sessions on Slips and report issues. The more times they can test Slips, the quicker they would be able to spot and fix problems, which is hampering their launch. They request interested individuals to help them in testing Slips. Please contact them on the Slips channel on Discord.
The entire Expanse community has been asking about when Slips will be released. The team knows the excitement that is surrounding their progress and launch, but they have had a slow start to the year. Trying to raise funding was a complicated process and they also had to factor in big moves (new state for Kyle, new continent for Husain), which slowed them down further. But, the team is finally building up momentum, and lots of interesting things will start to fall into place.
We need to appreciate that while many people in blockchain fall into the anarchist camp, unfortunately, a gambling-related platform like Slips cannot be non-compliant to existing regulations. And getting all the legal and regulatory boxes ticked is lot of work, that is both time- and resource-intensive.
One major issue the team is concerned about is the fact that although the Slips user experience is quite nice, it also means they might be seen as a money transmitter since they directly handle user funds by having access to the private keys. So they will need to do a lot of re-working their existing code for the sake of appeasing the country where most of their userbase will reside. If you are interested, this document is fascinating reading about Virtual Currencies and Online Gambling in the US:
So on the whole, the team is doing a lot of uninteresting work at the backstage to lay the foundations for a successful fund-raise and release in the next few months. Stay tuned, and thanks for the support.
The good news – SLIPS is ready! Check out slips.io. The team has burnt the midnight oil to create an awesome platform we are all proud of.
Next step? To be able to function as a full-fledged gaming site, they need a gaming license. Now, in the last newsletter, as also in Husain’s Medium post, we had informed you that the process of acquiring a gaming license is a time-consuming and costly affair. From setting up a company in a gaming regulations-friendly country (Malta, preferably) to hiring legal assistance and paying fees for a license, it is a tough way ahead. However, the team has found a clever, albeit temporary, workaround that would still allow you to play and bet on SLIPS. They have created a shop which they call the WarChest. They have just finished working on the design for the WarChest.
This is SLIPS’ brand new shop that will be bolted onto SLIPS and lets you spend all your EXP and Slips Lite balances to buy cool stuff like clothing, hardware, games, etc.
We hear that it was Christopher’s idea. While the team works its way around the gaming license problem, they needed a sink for people who buy and bet on the SLIPS platform with EXP (you can’t yet withdraw it) so this shop concept was created.
There are some items in the store you can purchase with crypto and mark up. There will be other items that will be bought by SLIPS and offered to players in very limited stock (e.g., gift cards). Gaming fans will love things like crates, which give you a random probability of items. So hopefully this little feature will give SLIPS a way to go “live” and test the product out without running a full gambling shop.
There is obviously a lot of work to be done – building the CMS, APIs and the front end, etc,. – but the design, as always, looks great! Check out slips.io and do not hesitate to ask questions on the SLIPS Discord channel. We hope SLIPS gets all the regulatory licenses and starts a full-fledged gaming platform soon.
In 2015, ChristopherFranko, a full-stack software engineer and one of the earliest adopters of blockchain technology decided, that the world needed a better, faster and flexible blockchain that anyone can use to create apps on. He envisaged a platform that adhered to the original Satoshian vision of freedom and zero regulation. Christopher teamed up with like-minded individuals and Expanse was born.
Expanse allows anyone to build, as well as use, decentralized applications, or dApps. Built by many people, Expanse is a platform that allows flexibility and adapts to multiple variations. Expanse is decentralized, open-source, fast, scalable and has a dedicated team of forward-thinking veterans of the industry who, over a period of three short years, have forged important and extensive industry partnerships.
Expanse has seen consistent growth and stability since its inception. It has also garnered the support of a fast-growing loyal community who continue to help Expanse achieve its vision. Everyday, new projects are born on the Expanse platform and in the words of Mr. Franko, “What you can do on Expanse is only limited by your imagination and talent.”
In keeping with its philosophy of making blockchain based projects more efficient and within everyone’s reach, Expanse.tech has set up a dedicated fund of $1,000,000 exclusively for innovative projects that are built on and around Expanse. Financial grants ranging from $5,000 to $50,000 are awarded to ideas that offer some unique solution or service while making use of the Expanse platform in some manner.
There are no other conditions to be met: Expanse has no interference in the ownership of IP, publishing of data or usage of the grants funds. It is very simple for entrepreneurs to use the Expanse platform, since they can use Expanse’s EXP token for their ventures instead of creating their own. Expanse also offers the benefit of a huge existing network and immense scalability. It is also beneficial for Expanse to have projects with real and relevant uses of blockchain on its network.
The process of grants begins with creation of a funding opportunity, goes on to applying for the grant, and then to deciding about the award and then successful awarding of the grant. The entire process is divided into 3 distinct phases:
Pre award phase- funding opportunities are created and applications reviewed
Award phase- deciding awards and notification of the same
Post award phase- implementation of the grant and reporting of the same
During the pre award phase, invitations for applications (with specifications like last date for submission of proposal etc) are posted, and then the awarding team reviews applications submitted for the grant. The grants review board reviews scores of applications from entrepreneurs who aspire to build projects to launch on the Expanse platform.
They screen the applications, conduct programmatic reviewing followed by financial review and then decide who the recipient of the grant should be. Each proposal is scrutinized, the whitepaper checked and the attached budget analyzed by the team. Expanse also plans to make the review process more democratic and allow public voting in the future. The team also carries out cost analysis and ensures that all statutory and financial regulations are met.
After the application review, the Expands Grants team decides about the recipients of the grants. Their decision is based on the financial and programmatic reviews done by the review members of the team. In order to ensure fair and prejudice-free decisions, the recommendations of the awards team are reviewed stringently. This is the awards phase. The awarding agency then sends a Notice of Award, which is officially and legally binding. Once the grant is accepted, the receivers must carry out all the terms and conditions the grant comprises of.
The post award phase comprises of implementation of the grant, regular reporting about the progress of the project and closeout. The Expanse team not only gives the award, but also assists the awardees comply with all regulations, while they carry out the project which they have been awarded the grant for. They have specific performance metrics to monitor the progress and expenditure. Such reporting, which varies for each grant, is done by designated grants management officer and program officer to ensure transparency and to avoid any chance of fraud.
Finally the award recipients are required to carry out closeout by submitting financial, performance and programmatic reports when the grant expires or is terminated. All reports are reviewed b Expanse Grants staff to ensure that all the funds have been utilized in the right manner. The Grants team then also confirms that the recipient of the grant has completed all tasks related to the grant. The recipient must retain the records for 3 years from the date of the final closeout report.
The Expanse Grants program has become immensely popular within a very short span of time, and there have been multiple recipients of this award since its inception a couple of months ago.
Case in point is a project called SLIPS. Sponsored by Marcia Lewis Danzeisen, Expanse CAO, Slips was co-founded by Husain Fazel, CEO, and Kyle O’Neill, Creative Director. It is a blockchain-based social betting platform for gamers. The SLIPS team has announced its project roadmap, too. SLIPS aims to make betting free of restrictions, and let eSports gaming fans bet against each other, while also watching the streams they regularly follow, since SLIPS overlays existing platforms. It also adds to the revenue sources for stream owners. Moreover, since Expanse already has EXP tokens, they can readily make them available to their users to make bets.
“We feel we’ve come up with an extremely interesting concept, and we have a huge target audience,” said Kyle. “We’ve been working diligently on building our proof of concept, (as opposed to throwing up a smart contract to raise funds), and connecting with our audience. We don’t need to reinvent the wheel and create our own blockchain. We plan to look to Expanse for that. We have entirely different problems to solve like user experience and adoption.
Husain is a full stack developer while Kyle is a communication designer. Apart from expanding the team, they are also using the funds for developing the proof of concept. The development of the project is in full swing. The grant has helped the team garner the necessary funds to complete aspects of the project that were being hampered by the bottleneck of lack of funds. Now with the funds as well as the might of the Expanse team’s expertise, they are track to complete the project that will hugely benefit both their target audience as well Expanse.
Welcome to the twelfth edition of the Expanse Newsletter for 2018. This publication is a bi-monthly Newsletter issued on the 1st and 15th of each month to share happenings within our community. Here are a few highlights in this edition:
Gander Beta Version Launches!
Meet our newest EXP Grants recipients
Borderless Charity – Remembering Miguel
Compelling Quotes from our Discord Community
The Beta Version of Gander, the Expanse Explorer, Has Launched
We are excited to announce the launch of the beta version of our new Gander Explorer. The beta site is available for access at https://beta.gander.tech. Once we find that the beta is performing well, we will officially launch Gander by July 15, 2018.
Gander is set to become the backbone of the Expanse.Tech™ network. It will show all of the transaction counts and history for the users’ accounts.
The new Gander Explorer will also show details about the miners’ activities on the Expanse network. Later on, in V. 2, we will also display some great info regarding dApps and smart contracts running on the network.
Expanse is what it’s community wants it to be, and Gander is no different. We invite all our community members to check out the beta version of Gander and then post your feedback and suggestions in the new channel set up for Gander in the Expanse Discord. Your opinion is very important, so send in your invaluable feedback on how best to improve it and also information about any bugs you may encounter.
EXP Grants Selects Two More Grant Recipients; Challenges Everyone to Put Forward Big Ideas
The EXP Grants review board met recently to cull through the myriads of applications we’ve received from entrepreneurs focused on building projects to launch on the Expanse blockchain.
This time, there are two that stand out, and we have decided to awards grants for both projects. As you know,
the EXP Grants Program is open to anyone with a great idea on how to use the Expanse platform to create something truly amazing. You can learn more on the EXP Grants Program and how to apply here: https://expanse.tech/expanse-grants-lifecycle/.
Grant Recipient: Slips
One of the teams selected to receive a grant is called Slips. The project they submitted, also called Slips™, is a social betting platform for gamers and streamers.
Slips is a blockchain project that will launch on the Expanse.Tech platform, allowing eSports gaming fans to bet against each other while watching the streams they love on platforms such as Twitch and Mixer.
If you love eSports, unless you go to a large event, you’ll most likely watch the action on a stream. There are sites that allow you to bet on the results of these matches, but they are very restrictive—you can only bet on certain streamers (that the sites select based on popularity) and certain games (games that they can obtain results for via an API). However, betting is more fun when it is unrestricted and when people can be more creative with what bets they can make and how they can challenge their own friends.
Slips fixes these problems and more. It is a dApp and browser plugin that overlays existing platforms. You watch the stream that appears on Twitch, YouTube or Mixer, but you can also make challenges while doing so. Slips also has an intelligent moderation system which neatly solves the API issue. In addition to building the betting platform eSports fans have been crying out for, it also provides stream owners with a new revenue stream— besides the donations they already receive to keep their channel running.
Team Slips was co-founded by Husain Fazel, CEO, and Kyle O’Neill, Creative Director. Slips is essentially a two-man team that prides itself on doing more with less.They have produced some amazing work on a shoestring budget.
Husain, who is a full stack developer, has worked for a number of start-up organizations over the last 10 years. He got into the cryptosphere a little late, (middle of last year), but was fascinated by the space. He writes a blog called Orphan Blocks.
Kyle is a Communications Designer and has been working for a start-ups creating UI for mobile applications, web designs, marketing materials, etc. Most recently, he created a private social networking platform for businesses and universities called Qrosity. Kyle has been working on blockchain-related projects for the past year.
“We feel we’ve come up with an extremely interesting concept, and we have a huge target audience,” said Kyle. “We’ve been working diligently on building our proof of concept, (as opposed to throwing up a smart contract to raise funds), and connecting with our audience. We don’t need to reinvent the wheel and create our own blockchain. We plan to look to Expanse for that. We have entirely different problems to solve (user experience + adoption).
The team is happy that by leveraging the network and scaling improvements that Expanse has created, it can focus their efforts on building the project. And since Expanse already has its own token, EXP, the team doesn’t need to create a different token, but can simply use EXP as a way for users to make bets on the Slips platform.
It’s a win-win collaboration in that Expanse also benefits from having another blockchain project with a real world use-case launching on its network. Team Slips is 100 percent focused on adoption, and it hopes to be a real success story for Expanse.
When asked how he felt about receiving the grant for his projects, Kyle said, “I am very excited about the prospect of working with Expanse. Chris and his team are enthusiastic and extremely supportive of builders like us that are trying to create the blockchain solutions of tomorrow. It was very reassuring that they understood the problems we face on our journey and are committed to helping small teams like us overcome them and succeed.”
“Rarely do you see a team come to light that is as prepared to launch as the Slips team is,” said ChristopherFranko, Expanse Founder. “They came to us with the complete package—white paper, website, pitch deck—you name it. We congratulate Team Slips on receiving the grant, and we shall extend all the help they need to launch their robust solution that will offer value to e-sports enthusiasts as well as to the Expanse community.”
Slips is beginning the proof of concept now, so they can put their dApp to the test. Given the recent supreme court ruling on sports gambling, the team thinks their project has some serious potential as a profitable blockchain technology product.
Check out their website, https://slips.io. Read the “lite paper” here: https://slips.ams3.digitaloceanspaces.com/slips_litepaper.pdf
Read Husain’s blog here: https://medium.com/@orphanblocks
Grant Recipient: Gameboard
The next project to receive a grant is Gameboard™, brought to us by the Guatemalan company, Power Development. CEO Omar Alvarez, is also a key member of the Expanse.Tech team. In fact, we first met Omar when his company came on board as an Expanse partner.
Although Omar’s Expanse title is Creative Director, designing and building awesome websites is only a fraction of what he accomplishes. He is the creator and Community Manager of the Expanse Spanish Discord channel, which is a very active community with a lively mix of games, camaraderie and support. Omar provides an endless stream of creative schemes that serve to keep community members engaged.
Let’s talk about Omar’s real passion, the blockchain-based Gameboard project. It is an incentive-based gamification system that allows the tracking of an individual’s gaming actions—measuring and comparing each member, team or department—using a rewards system to award points and badges at various levels. The rewards earned are incentive to play on the gamification playground now accessible on the www.gameboard.tech website.
On the Gameboard platform, you can register your company and create your teams and players, configuring departments and their teams. Each player is given a name and unique ID. You can then define internal actions to perform based on your company priorities and procedures.
For example, completing an assignment on time may get you ten points; selling a certain product may get you 15 points, and so on. You can then create levels and badges for the leels. All of this information is recorded, and a leader board is created that is sent to management, as well as all other eams to keep up the competitive spirit. This creative, fun approach to work is called gamification.
Gameboard is a great way to gamify mundane work, keep employees motivated, enhance reputation among peers, earn compensation for a job well done, and remove any possible perception of biases from the minds of employees. The result is a platform that brings about unparalleled transparency.
Gameboard is now integrated on the Expanse blockchain, and players on the platform can get rewards in the form of EXP tokens, thereby greatly enhancing the real-world use of EXP and providing value to the Expanse community.
“We believe in a world where people need to play,” said Omar. “Gameboard is a tool to make more productive teams. Together with my Gameboard partners, CFO Andres Garcia, we are setting out to put the ‘play’ factor into the world of work.”
“Omar and his Gameboard partners continue to amaze me with their creative approach to getting the job down and achieving record productivity,” said ChristopherFranko, Expanse Founder. Omar, in particular, has brought the Expanse Army concept into our Expanse community, achieving high levels of engagement and rewards to the community just for playing.”
You can visit the Gameboard website, https://Gameboard.Tech to learn more. Read the Gameboard pitch deck here. Many congratulations to Omar and his team at Power Development.
When Kindness Triumphs Over Everything Else
Note from the Editor: ChristopherFranko’s passion for blockchain technology is only exceeded by his devotion and commitment to giving back to those in need. Christopher founded the Borderless Charity, a 501(c) (3) organization based in Washington, NC. Its mission is to empower humanity by providing access to nutrition, housing, education, and healthcare. I was so touched by a recent blog about just one of the initiatives the charity took on, that I felt compelled to share it here. Sometimes we all benefit by focusing on what’s really important…
What binds us all as humans is far greater than what divides us. What is common within us is far greater than what differentiates us. At a greater level, we aren’t all that different. Call it a miracle of creation or the marvel of evolution, all sentient beings are united by a force that is stronger than anything else in the Universe. And that is the power of goodness and compassion; to empathize with the pain of another living being and the innate ability to respond at a micro level.
The story of Miguel Mallari Jr., while common to the countless stories of suffering in the world, is also outlined by the silver lining of hope and is a testimony to the undying spirit of the human being against apparently insurmountable odds.
Miguel M. Mallari Jr., a 54-year old man living in The Philippines was diagnosed with diabetes that had taken over most of his body. He was admitted to the Loving Mother General Hospital two months ago. He soon found out that his hospital care and medication bills were very expensive and for a man of meager means as Mr. Mallari was, it became extremely difficult for him to cope with the financial adversity that was thrust upon him. Friends and well-wishers came forward to offer financial aid. They chipped in with what they could but it still wasn’t enough. A dear friend started helping him pay the hospital and medication bills but still fell short of the expensive treatment Mr. Mallari was getting at the hospital. Many more friends and family members came forward to help financially or to volunteer to be beside him in the hospital and provide him in whatever ways they could. However, the situation was out of everybody’s hands and expenses kept piling up.
Just before he was scheduled to undergo a leg amputation surgery, because his legs were infected owing to his uncontrolled diabetes, the hospital authorities told him that they could not perform surgery on him unless he clears all of the pending bills of the hospital. The situation, it seemed, for Mr. Mallari was that of pure doom.
Providence, it seems, has a way out of every dark situation. Friends of Mr. Mallari found out about the Borderless Charity and immediately approached Mr. ChristopherFranko, the founder of Borderless Charity and the Expanse.tech platform. They shared with him the critical situation Mr. Mallari was in. Without hesitation, Mr. Franko committed himself to help Mr. Mallari through the Borderless Charity. The charity donated half of Mr. Mallari’s hospital bills.
Mr. Mallari decided to live with his friend at his home. He decided to spend whatever time he had surrounded by people he loved and who loved him back. He requested leave from the hospital because he did not want to stay at a place that wasn’t empathetic to the needs of a patient in dire conditions. He chose to live in his friend’s home and his food and shelter was provided by his friend and his loving, caring family.
When he went to the doctor for follow-up, the doctor gave him three months to live because the infection had now spread to his kidneys as well. And yet, Mr. Mallari showed extreme courage and grace under these circumstances although he was saddened by the news of his impending death. He was extremely thankful for the grace and blessings his friends and family had showered upon him. And most of all, he was full of gratitude for the help extended by the Borderless Charity. He said that he will always pray for his friends and the Borderless Charity’s success.
At Borderless Charity, we live by the philosophy that the means of living a better life should not be concentrated with a select few. The disparity among us and our brethren should never stop us from extending a warm, helping hand to those in need. After all, how different are we from them and what stops us from not being in a situation similar to theirs?
Unfortunately, within two months of leaving the hospital, Mr. Miguel Mallari Jr. passed away. He will, no doubt, travel to a better place. However, how we live in this world determines how we travel to the next plane. It also determines what memories and legacy we leave in this world. The greatest achievement of a human is not how much wealth he accumulates but how much kindness and love he receives throughout his life. If you have even one person who truly loves you by your side when you leave this world, your time on this planet was worth its while. We are sure that Mr. Mallari had more than one person with him when he left the world for his eternal journey.
Compelling Quotes from Our Discord Community
Here is a collection of compelling quotes posted over the last two weeks in our various Discord channels:
“Crypto is being manipulated and most likely by the people claiming to ‘investigate into it.’ Removing intermediaries is terrifying for intermediaries. For millennia, intermediaries have ruled the world, and they will do anything it takes to undermine anyone looking to unseat them from their throne.”
On a lighter note, someone from the Spanish Channel posted this:
“The General Channel is on fire. Chris is so f***ing mad…..I like it!”
Another wise guy had this to say:
“Sorry, not rich anymore, now I am eating only ramen!
One loyal and enlightened community member said,
“Every Newsletter has more good news than most any altcoin… Expanse has one of the strongest teams out there…. real development… no games and strong commitment to their community. Problem lies in utility and exposure. With utility and exposure Expanse will blow up.”
Join our Discord
Expanse Discord is live and kicking! Discord is a great communication platform, better than Slack. Join our growing community on Discord and you can also speak directly with the Expanse team or others in the Expanse community. Sign up for Discord today!. Thank you.
The Expanse Ambassador Program is designed to provide support and guidance for those of you who would like to help us spread the word about Expanse by hosting local meet-ups—wherever you are in the world.
The Expanse team are available to answer your questions and will also assist you by:
Providing Expanse-branded apparel for the meet-up host (the ambassador).
Guiding you through the process of selecting a location.
Supplying Expanse giveaways for drawings or contests.
Assisting with presentation materials.
Providing a small allowance for food and libations for your meet-up guests.
Expanse is thrilled to have you in the Expanse Army. Be sure to join Discord if you are not already part of it at this link: https://Discord.me/expanse – and grateful to all who would like to join the Ambassador Program!