NuCypher + Keep: KEaNU AMA, Hosted by Staking Hub

Hey NuCypher and Keep community, here is the transcribed copy of the AMA hosted by Figment's Staking Hub. Thanks to the hosts, the Nu + Keep team, and those who asked questions from the community.

Hey NuCypher and Keep community, here is the transcribed copy of the AMA hosted by Figment's Staking Hub. Thanks to the hosts, the Nu + Keep team, and those who asked questions from the community.

(Q) Elizabeth (Figment): How have the teams overcome some of the challenges of this being the first major protocol merger?

(A) MacLane (Nu): The fundamental challenge is that KEaNU is the first of its kind, which means we don't have any precedent examples we can look to for guidance on how something like this should work. But that's also super exciting because we get to invent it!

Trying to unite two decentralized networks is definitely not the same as trying to combine two companies (I worked briefly in m&a in a previous life 😅).

There are many different stakeholders in both networks (core development teams, stakers, node operators, passive token holders, LP providers, 3rd party infra like exchanges, custodians, node providers).

Working out an upgrade path to combine KEEP and NU that had support from each stakeholder group wasn't trivial. We wanted to make sure everyone was on board with the upgrade so that we get the benefits of a combined community going forward.

We also didn't want it to be a situation where each of the core development teams are coordinating and deciding everything in a top-down, centralized manner.

We wanted to make sure this was a community-driven process that had buy-in and participation from both sides. I think we achieved that pretty well with the multiple rounds of community proposals. This was an iterative process that got us to an (IMO) very good final design, but it also meant that we were building in public and that comes with a lot of uncertainty and ambiguity which was tough for many community members.

(Q) Elizabeth (Figment): Can you share any details at this point of how the new network going to work?

(A) Doug VK (Keep): Most likely the T network will launch with a very basic staking contract that doesn't do much. We'll use that contract to slowly build up the # of stakers on T and make sure the merge goes smoothly. Next, the Keep team will be launching the v2 TBTC protocol on the T network.

(A) MacLane (Nu): There will also be "staking adapters" to allow existing NU and KEEP stakers with locked tokens to participate in the new network before their unlock period. So if you have a locked stake in one or both networks currently, don't worry you'll be grandfathered in 🙂

(Q) Clayton (Figment): What are some of the improvements for TBTC v2?

(A) Doug VK (Keep): Much more scalable and efficient use of capital. We aim to meet all the potential demand for trustless capacity on Ethereum. You can see the beginnings of how it works here:

(Q) Elizabeth (Figment): What do stakers need to do to prepare for launch?

(A) MacLane (Nu): Participate in the governance process! Right now the community is still discussing the DAO framework for the upgraded network as well as the inflation mechanism/schedule.

(A) Doug VK (Keep): On the KEEP side -- there will be an "easy upgrade" path for stakers to stake into the new network. Should be a single button click on our dashboard. As MacLane mentioned, some details still being worked out regarding network functionality

(A) MacLane (Nu): Once the network upgrade is deployed, then stakers/node operators should make sure they upgrade to the latest client software and complete any additional steps we specify (none of that needs to be done yet, but watch for announcements/updates)

(Q) Alex Cote (Community): Will running a node on the KEANU network will look more like running a Nu node or a Keep node? To be completely honest, I’m staking in a pool right now and haven’t jumped in running one yet. From what I saw, running a node isn’t that easy to begin with, but running a Keep one seem even a little harder. Knowing that running nodes is gonna be part of the success of Tbtc, are you gonna try to make it easy to do so?

(A) Doug VK (Keep): More like NU -- even easier. Our main focus now is improving UX across the board. If anyone would like to participate in our usability interviews, please message me your email!

(Q) Brady (Figment): Will Keep and NuCypher continue to be maintained and upgraded? For how long?

(A) MacLane (Nu): The idea is that, eventually, KEaNU will subsume both the existing NuCypher and Keep networks. That means it will offer all the functionality provided (e.g. tBTC, PRE, random beacon, and other future threshold primitives). We will maintain the legacy networks from a security standpoint but anticipate most/all activity will migrate the to upgraded network.

(Q) Jerimiah S (community): Does the upgrade actually create any new value or new utility? or is it simply less competitors in the market?

(A) MacLane (Nu): tBTC v2 will be a new app on the upgraded network. Similarly, future threshold primitives and applications would be deployed there as well.

(A) Doug VK (Keep): I think the answer is Yes here. We're working towards a shared mission of growing Threshold cryptography as a primitive in the new network

(Q) Elizabeth (Figment): What would be a big win for Keanu in the first 6 months? 1 year?

(A) Doug VK (Keep): For Keep - launch, and scale v2 TBTC

(A) MacLane (Nu): In the short/medium-term, it's definitely launching tBTC v2 and getting traction for that. If it can compete with wBTC for market share and become a key part of the DeFi ecosystem that will be a big win for the combined network.

In the long-term, we want to move towards a decentralized threshold cryptography network that provides infrastructure to power many different DeFi and Web3 applications.

(Q) Jerimiah (Community): I know this is a pretty basic question but will there be new coins created or what will happen to the current KEEP and NU?

(A) Doug VK (Keep): Yes, a new token for the merged network, this is a pretty digestible way to get a handle on it:

(A) MacLane (Nu): Current KEEP and NU holders can upgrade to T by wrapping their tokens in a smart contract.

(Q) Rubber (Community): What would it mean to halt inflation?

(A) MacLane (Nu): Currently, NuCypher stakers are incentivized via an inflation subsidy (i.e. they earn additional NU by staking and running nodes). This NU inflation would cease and be replaced by a T inflation subsidy.

(Q) Rubber (Community): Will people be able to buy T with cash off the bat? Or must you have only KEEP or NU to wrap it to get T for a while?

(A) MacLane (Nu): It's an erc20 token so people would be able to create a liquidity pool for it if they want. As far as centralized exchange support, I don't see why they wouldn't want to support it, but that's ultimately up to them.

It's not an airdrop. You don't get free T on top of your NU/KEEP. You wrap your NU/KEEP in a smart contract to get T. You can't get that T and then dump your NU/KEEP.

(Q) Clayton (Figment): Are there any exchanges/custodians planning to support the smart contract wrapping process? Or will NU and KEEP holders have to do it via their own self-custodied wallets?

(A) MacLane (Nu): I'm optimistic that 3rd party exchanges/custodians will provide easy upgrade paths on-platform but that's ultimately up to them. In the worst case, holders can withdraw to self-custody and upgrade any time in the future without penalty.

(Q) Elizabeth (Figment): How could KEANU change what we know about infrastructure privacy?

(A) Doug VK (Keep): We want to raise the bar for access to threshold cryptography infrastructure that accelerates non-custodial, private usage of public networks. Right now, the initial success has been using it for a trustless bridge. But we want to make it easy for anyone to integrate and build

(Q) Brady (Figment): Is it still viable to run a KEEP ECSDA node on testnet?  What is the best option for support questions?

(A) Doug VK (Keep): We plan on running v1 tBTC (we're launching an upgrade in a couple of weeks which should lower the collateral ratio) and providing a path for a safe upgrade to tBTC v2. Keep running!

(Q) Alex Cote (Community):  Question for @dougvk , what does the allocation for liquidity pool look like on the KEEP side? I know all the current NU supply is either circulating or yet to be released for long-term stakers, which is approx 1.3B right now. For KEEP, it is 1Billion, but how many coins are still « up for grab » for those kinds of rewards out of that billion?

And what will happen to those allocated rewards once KEANU launches and incentive to provide liquidity for those pairs stops?

(A) Doug VK (Keep): Once the details of the new network are voted on and agreed, these questions will be answered. we'll work to make sure the incentives make sense

(Q) Alex Cote (Community): Ok, thanks. and is there a way to know what is the number of KEEP allocated for those kind of rewards? Tried Messari but couldn't really find it

(A) Doug VK (Keep):  Every week, we allocate 25k + 170k + 250k = 445k KEEP of liquidity rewards. once a month, we allocate 200k KEEP for a KEEP-only pool. these were governance decisions and subject to change

(Q) Alex Cote (Community): Yeah that I knew about, I was talking more about where these are coming from, as it doesn't seem to be inflation since the 1Billion number of KEEP token seems to be max supply

(A) Doug VK (Keep): We've allocated them and send them from that wallet address -- emission schedule here:

(Q) TheArtful Dodger (Community): What would it look like for an organization as an end-user of re-encryption? Would they transact in T? Would you build a UI or do you see it as strictly an API integration? I’m trying to wrap my head around what this looks like as a working product.

(A) MacLane (Nu): Right now, PRE is provided on the NuCypher network as an API and users pay for the service in ETH. I imagine it would likely be similar once PRE is running on KEaNU.

Of course, layering a UI on top of that for certain use cases is relatively straightforward.

(Q) Jerimiah (Community): When will this be implemented (sic)

(A) MacLane (Nu): All the required smart contracts are currently being implemented (staking contracts, upgrade contracts, etc.). Once that's finished and deployed, T will be available. We don't have an official timeline yet, but there were some community estimates in the final proposal which feel doable. Maybe ~August time frame, but certainly depends on how easy the implementation ends up being.

(Q) Rubber (Community): Will there be minimums for staking Nu and Keep for T?

(A) MacLane (Nu): Min staking requirements for T will almost certainly be lower than min staking requirements in NU or KEEP so there won't be a scenario where existing NU/KEEP stakers get locked out.

Rubber (Community) (comment): 👍 I believe this is important for attracting more nodes

(Q) Google Doc Question: When will we know the final Token Factors? Is there a formula we can use to calculate in real-time as we approach the halting of inflation on both protocols?

(A) MacLane (Nu): For NU, the relevant supply number is "current_total_supply" here:

The calculation would be 10B (initial T supply) * 45% / current_total_supply (of NU)

(Q) Elizabeth (Figment): Will Keep and NuCypher nodes still be able to opt-in to the network? Or will they have to deploy new Keanu nodes?

(A) J.Myles (Nu flute guy): The way I'm thinking about it, these processes will be essentially the same.  We'll ship an update that will include the required logic, and you'll have to complete a commensurate write to the contract to upgrade your token.

(A) MacLane (Nu): TBD on exactly what will be optional vs mandatory. That's still something being discussed and will partially depend on the difficulty of providing the various services offered on the network (e.g. tBTC v2). If you want to earn T rewards as a staker you will definitely have to be running something on KEaNU

(Q) Elizabeth (Figment): Does this means there will be new technology specs to run Keanu nodes?

(A) MacLane (Nu): Different services will have different requirements (e.g. tBTC vs PRE vs random beacon vs future services). It's not fully decided yet whether running a KEaNU node means having to run every service or being able to choose which ones to run or some combination (i.e. some required services and some optional ones)

(A) Doug VK (Keep): for running v2 TBTC we plan on it being comparable to running a NU node now

(Q) Rubber (Community): If you can stake T to get T, Nu and Keep will be essentially useless right. Still new to tokenomics please forgive me

(A) MacLane (Nu): My view is essentially:

  • if you have liquid NU or KEEP, upgrade to T. Optionally stake that T and run a node.
  • if you have staked NU or KEEP, the staking adapters will allow you to run a node on KEaNU as if you were staking T so you're grandfather into the upgraded network and can earn rewards. Once your staked NU/KEEP unlocks you can officially upgrade it to T

And that's a wrap. If you're looking for more jump in the NuCypher or Keep Telegram/Discord/Reddit/Twitter to stay up to date with the team and KEaNU news.

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