DeFi Gives Industries & Regulators No Choice But to Listen & Take Notice: Unhashed #21by@musharraf
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DeFi Gives Industries & Regulators No Choice But to Listen & Take Notice: Unhashed #21

by Mohammad MusharrafDecember 7th, 2021
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Unhashed is a QnA series where I speak with top execs of new and established blockchain projects to unravel the mystery of blockchain & crypto.

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For the 21st part of Unhashed, I reached out to Beau Olson, CEO of Transient Network - a smart contract marketplace for non-coders. In this interview, we span a range of different topics from smart contract adoption across the enterprise sector to the regulatory aspects of DeFi and much more. So, let’s dive in.

Q1. Welcome to Unhashed. What’s your story behind starting your journey in the crypto and blockchain space and what led you to work on Transient Network?

Answer: Having been a senior technology leader at organizations such as Flutter, one of the biggest online entertainment companies in the world - operating brands like PaddyPower Betfair Europe, Sportsbet in Australia, and Fanduel in the US - innovation is key to customer differentiation and new experiences.**

Blockchain was one element that we experimented with to broaden our understanding of its possibilities but also how it may solve customer problems today and into the future. I got my first taste of blockchain through several experiments and prototypes.

Bringing off-chain data on-chain was a key component of our hypothesis and this led me to explore cryptocurrencies like LINK. Once I was in, I was hooked and here we are today.

Q2. Please delve into the problems or bottlenecks which are hindering the adoption of smart contracts as enterprise solutions.

Answer: Fear - caused by unfamiliarity and a lack of education. Enterprises generally have two options to take their first steps into blockchain: have a large multinational corporation manage everything for you at a significant price or utilize an existing ecosystem and build your own solution using the various tools in the market – trying to play in a field that you’re unfamiliar with, most likely without experienced Solidity developers or access to individuals with experience in blockchain fundamentals. **

It is this lack of familiarity that we see as a significant barrier to utilization of smart contracts and more broadly, blockchain, across industries where we see expansive opportunities for customer and business benefits realization.

Q3. How do the Transient ecosystem and its trustless offerings blend into centralized firms and their operations?

Answer: Transient’s global marketplace housing our individual dAppswill deliver value for specific use cases and demographics that caters to all — freelancers to enterprises — solving problems across a breadth of industries.

As we have incrementally built out our core product, we have sought continuous real-world feedback allowing us to inspect and adapt our product accordingly — this gives us immense confidence in Transient’s ability to give that first push.

To break down the barriers mentioned above, we believe our offering addresses this by:

Code-free, no developers or build-tools required: - the experience is familiar with standard tools used today, such as CMS and CRM’s - this means anyone that can use a drop and drag form can create a smart contract.

Integration is a breeze: utilize on-chain or off-chain data to build and execute your smart contracts**

Interoperability: our core has been built agnostically allowing us to incrementally extend our network across chains and partners (on-chain and off-chain) at pace. This expands our network and enables significant growth opportunities across the ecosystem.

Q4. How do you think governments and regtech will embrace the ‘trustless’ facet of a smart contract ecosystem?

Answer: Regulatory landscapes are changing daily. Given the velocity at which technology innovation and generational principle-based social change is occurring, the shift in the mindset of highly regulated industries such as Banking and Finance has moved with more velocity in the last 3-5 years than the preceding century. **

We have seen this caused by forward-thinking monumental movements like DeFi giving these industries, and the regulators that govern them, no other choice but to at least listen, take notice and assess how they embrace technology. **

At Transient, our approach with all of our traditional-industry partners hasbeen that education and a clear ability to demonstrate the connection of a use-case and how a blockchain-led solution could amplify an experience or optimize a business, is critical to ‘proving’ the value and demystifying the rhetoric around blockchain and its capabilities. **

We see this same principle apply to governments and regtech, as they say ‘the proof is in the pudding’ - and we believe experimentation, prototyping, and collaboration are key.

Q5. Transient aims to provide a ‘zero-touch data-driven workflow’ for all. How does this translate into reality with special emphasis on the compromise of flexibility for users?

Answer: As a technology leader first exposed to ‘Lean’ development principles some 15 years ago, for all its misgivings, I became obsessed with identifying opportunities that reduce waste -  albeit people-resource overhead or computational resource optimization.**

We are only at the ground level of simplifying smart contracts for the everyday user, but our overall ambition is to provide an ability for truly zero-touch processes - bridging off-chain data on-chain to build, deploy and execute smart contracts. Simply set up a number of attributes and design a flow, using our UI and sit-back and let Transient do all the work.**

Imagine an insurer that has the ability to translate their existing policy attributes instantaneously into a smart contract as soon as a new user is registered, providing protection and immutability for the consumer. When there is a claim event (like a car accident) the same user can then upload an image of their claim event and utilize blockchain image processing to assess and ultimately pay the claimant instantly to their crypto wallet of choice. **

We have a long way to go at Transient and as an industry, however, we believe the strides being taken in building new chains targeting the types of volumes we expect to see is progressing rapidly and the idea of zero-touch is inching closer every day.

Q6. How do you view the services of oracles in the building of a smart contract ecosystem? Also please throw light on the integrity and security of off-chain data transfer.

Answer: Oracles and verified sources are a critical part of not only Transient’s ecosystem, but the blockchain ecosystem as a whole - it is literally the glue holding it all together. Given our dApps and the use-cases we are targeting, verifiable data is crucial to providing a superior experience.

With Transient’s unique proposition of , it has allowed us to build relationships and partnerships with oracle providers (announcement to coincide with our CryptoPool mainnet launch) to not only leverage existing data-sets but for Transient to be a catalyst for bringing highly sought after data on-chain - by partnering with large data distributors - particularly in the gaming and esports sphere - is a way Transient hopes to contribute to the ever-growing on-chain data sources.

When dealing with traditional businesses looking to enter the world of blockchain, there will inevitably be a transitory requirement to utilize off-chain data, in the form of traditional ETL (extract, transform, load) methods to allow experiences to be created - integrity and security aspects should be treated cautiously as part of any solution design, as they would in traditional technology stacks. At Transient, where an on-chain source exists it will be used and anywhere there is a distinguishing data-point providing an outcome to our community it will be consumed on-chain.

Q7. What are your thoughts on a multichain future? And please touch upon how institutions can leverage interoperability to build additional functionalities and/or serve more users?

Answer: Besides the natural technological advancement of blockchain and outlier technology, I truly believe the race for the most powerful, efficient, and usable chain is the single biggest driver to mainstream adoption. On a commercial or visible impact scale, we know most will fail, but the ability for engineers and technologists to inspect, learn and adapt at each attempt is absolutely paramount to building an ecosystem that can truly be used by anyone, anywhere, anytime. **

Crypto and traditional industries alike will benefit greatly from a range of chains building solutions to a myriad of problems - organic interoperability across chains will become a key feature powering customer experiences and interactions as we move from the digital to the physical world and everything in between.

Disclaimer: The sole purpose of Unhashed is to unhash (decode) information about projects innovating using blockchain and cryptocurrencies and share it with the community. The writer does not have any vested interest in any of the projects covered herein. Not that this article shares any, but still, taking investment advice from strangers on the internet is not a wise thing to do.