Open-source development is very close to the cryptocommunity’s heart. The traits of being transparent, open to public scrutiny, and driven by a selfless public desire to support a project with a noble cause gives the end-user a sense of connection to the software, making them feel just as much a part of the development as the team members.
Indeed, many projects have benefited immensely from community contributions, whose works range from entire plug-ins to critical bug fixes. The open-source community is one that is motivated by a love for the work rather than for compensation, and the sense that they can improve upon the existing service or product.
Programmers revel in being made to see that something could be made to work better. There is a deep sense of satisfaction in being able to create the best software possible for everyone to use. It is because of this that we see the popularity of LibreOffice, VLC Media Player, and, most representative of all, the Linux Operating Systems.
Despite the increasing popularity of open-source approaches to software development, the space encounters an insurmountable problem: limited resources and an understandable limit on incentives.
There is only so much free time and mental energy that developers can devote to solving open-source issues. Keep in mind that this is an idealistic and altruistic group to begin with – as much as they try to accomplish, their contribution can only be limited.
And there are the projects themselves, in desperate need of skilled developers who can help bring them to life by rectifying bugs, auditing code, and developing tools.
There is a vacuum in work relationships to be filled here, and this is precisely what FundRequest is seeking to do.
What Is FundRequest?
A cryptocurrency project must possess a credible reason for existence in order to justify the money it raises from open-minded investors. Despite the ocean of projects sloshing around in the market, only a fraction can honestly claim that they are doing some good. FundRequest is one of the those.
In the simplest terms, the platform positions itself as a decentralized marketplace for open-source developers. FundRequest’s vision is to foster a sense of collaboration by providing development teams with access to talent across the globe and incentivizing developers to push just a little more to support their favorite projects.
The idea is so simple, but remember: Bitcoin too is simple in its purpose – pay anyone anywhere without having to worry about exorbitant fees – but the beauty lies in the protocol.
Until now, there has not been a comprehensive and hassle-free method of designing such a marketplace, but with FundRequest implementing such features as direct integration with GitHub, developers now have a seamless way of being paid for their contributions to open-source projects.
How It Works
Now development teams can place funds in smart contracts that will automatically reward developers for rectifying issues. You can imagine the enhanced sense of delight for a developer who already enjoys the feeling of contribution, when he or she receives payment for it.
While some may scoff at the monetization of a space they rigidly and superficially deem to be non-profit, there is nothing to be criticized here. Busy people are contributing valuable time, and a monetary compensation instills a deeper sense of connection to their project.
Given that developers have limited time to make contributions and thus can only make improvements when possible, this system could also spur them to commit themselves deeply, driving them to make consistent high-quality contributions and engage for the long term. The open-source nature of the project also keeps any malicious behavior in check.
On that note, the platform is designed such that it rewards good behavior. In any decentralized system, despite the push for eliminating the need for trust, a certain level of trust is necessary.
FundRequest will manifest this in the form of their SkillToken Factory, which is an indicator of the skill of the developer and their consistency. They are rewarded with SkillTokens, a publicly visible account of what is essentially their reputation.
There are several ways in which an individual can be rewarded with SkillTokens, including dispute resolution, writing reviews, answering questions and, of course, addressing issues.
Cleverly, FundRequest plans to integrate this with other platforms popular with the open-source community, such as StackExchange.
As they note in their whitepaper (click on the download button), SkillTokens gained from answering questions in the Python StackExchange will be added to GitHub resolutions relating to Python. Not only is there a tantalizing possibility to link multiple platforms popular with the open-source community, they also have the chance to aid them by showcasing what is a wide-ranging resume.
If SkillTokens are indicative of knowledge and involvement on GitHub and StackExchange, then recruiters, who increasingly turn to GitHub to assess candidates, have a reliable method of analyzing an individual’s capabilities.
This is a win-win for both organizations and developers, and is exactly the kind of focused use case that a blockchain project should seek to deliver.
The FundRequest Ecosystem
With respect to the ecosystem’s stakeholders (and ecosystems make or break a project), FundRequest’s will consist of 3: the funder, the solver, and the project owner.
The solver is the one who solves the issue, for which he or she is paid. The funder, an individual or company, funds the request; they can either be the issuer of the request or co-fund a previously funded request. The project owner validates the solution of a request.
Through APIs and browser extensions, FundRequest will allow funders to submit requests through a platform of their choice. Interestingly, the request can be funded through any ERC-20 compliant token, even their own project token. Funds are stored in a smart contract.
The solver then decides to work on the request. To do so, they will have to stake FundRequest’s cryptocurrency, FND. This serves to keep bad behavior in check, such as taking on too many requests or being less than diligent in creating the solution.
These tokens are locked until the completion of the action. Should the work be conducted improperly, only a portion (or none at all) of the staked funds will be returned. Thus, developers are incentivized to avoid bad behavior at the risk of their funds.
As described below, a dispute can be raised during a cooldown period, during which stakeholders can vote to decide who has been wronged. Good behavior is further incentivized through a share of staked funds or skill tokens being awarded to voting members. The full staked amount returns upon resolution of the request.
The project owner can then validate the solution, and if it passes, the funds are released to the solver. However, there is a short cooldown period before funds are deposited in the solver’s account, during which any disputes may be raised.
FundRequest is headquartered in Antwerp, Belgium, and was co-founded by Karel Striegel, who has a strong background in software development, particularly in DevOps. His experience includes being the CEO and founder of Striegel BVBA, and working as a systems engineer at International Post Corporation.
Tim Dierckxsens is another co-founder whose strength lies in business analysis and strategy, particularly in the formation of deals and partnerships. marketing. He has also worked at International Post Corporation as a consultant and project manager, before which he worked as a business analyst.
Gerbert Vandenberghe is the third co-founder, who’s also the company’s COO. His experience is also concentrated on business, having worked at Jidoka and other companies in that capacity.
Davy Van Roy is last of the co-founders and serves as the CTO. His experience includes Solidity, Java, and software development.
The team has written a blog post about themselves, where you can learn more about them.
Perhaps even more significantly, they have partnerships with several highly anticipated projects, including:
- SingularityNET, an AI marketplace
- Request Network, the payments focused project
- ORCA, an open banking platform for crypto users
- TrustWallet, an open-source Ethereum wallet
Additionally, they have been listed on more exchanges, including CoinBene.
How Can You Contribute?
Now that FundRequest is live, it is possible for you to start solving issues at this very moment. Browse through available requests on the FundRequest platform, and you’ll see a variety of requests ranging greatly in compensation, from a few tens of dollars to nearly $200 for a single request.
How To Buy and Store FundRequest
FundRequest is currently available on the decentralized exchange IDEX and CoinBene. There is a total supply of about 98 million FND tokens, with 31 million in circulation.
There’s no doubt as to the growing popularity of open-source development. Now more than ever, people have the ability and the desire to contribute to causes they believe in, and there’s plenty of good in incentivizing them to do so.
The really special character of the project comes from the fact that it gives some measure to the quality of a developer, who is now compensated both financially and professionally, as their reputation is gauged by the SkillTokens Factory.
Building this ecosystem where companies and developers can directly interact with each other is an excellent use case, and as tech skills become increasingly valuable, will only attract more participants.
The key now for FundRequest’s success is to nurture this ecosystem, forming more partnerships, designing more integrations, and making developing through the platform more attractive.