Welcome to the 4NTS January Newsletter. January has felt like a year of its own. Turmoil in traditional financial markets has made many people take a second look at crypto, both as an investment and a core technology. Elon Musk has jumped on Bitcoin, and to some extent DeFi. NEAR has continued to build at rapid speed – with the EVM making serious progress, and the NEAR marketing team kicking into gear. Here’s what happened in January:
NEAR Marketing is Kicking into Gear (Buckle Up):
Alexandra Tinsman and the NEAR Marketing Team started off the year with an overhaul and roadmap for marketing goals in 2021. The most important new pieces of information include the following:
The NEAR Vision: “A world where people have control of their money, data, and power of governance.”
The NEAR Mission: “Accelerating the World’s transition to open technologies by growing and enabling a community of Developers and Makers.”
NEAR Goals (Posted in this update here): “We’ve got a shared goal across NEAR to help onboard 2,500 developers and support 10 successful apps in 2021. We think this is achievable but it means we need to ramp up awareness campaigns.”
Our takeaways from these updates: Support NEAR because it is explicit about it’s desire to safeguard privacy, and democratize innovation. It also is going to boom.
NEAR EVM Update:
After significant discussion, the NEAR EVM team reported that nETH will base the NEAR EVM. You can follow the discussion on this decision here. Second, the EVM Team set a Q1 goal of launching the EVM on testnet. Team lead Arto Bendiken had the following to say:
“For most of our partners to succeed in deploying they should be able to deploy their apps to test-net once it is all up and going and they should certainly be able to bring it over.”
The team set the aspirational goal of getting to Main Net by the end of the quarter. Regardless of whether this is reached it is fair to expect a Main Net Debut of the EVM around Mid-Q2 based on current progress (i.e. that is subject to change). The full update can be found here.
DragonFly Capital Joins the NEAR Validator Advisory Board:
Image from near.org
DragonFly jumped into the NEAR Ecosystem with a 17.3 million NEAR stake on the network, making them the 3rd largest validator. A full writeup of the reasons why DragonFly signed on can be found in the excellent blog writeup by Managing Partner, Haseeb Qureshi.
Other NEAR Updates:
The NEAR Governance Forum Launched. It’s awesome to use and will definitely be the home for much discussion and development into NEAR’s future. NEAR DAO’s are making a steady march into the Ecosystem (Sputnik, Developer, Angel) → More on this to come in February. And the NEAR DevEx, led by Matt Lockyer is staffing up for a busy spring starting with ETH Denver.
What is on the Horizon?
For contributors and new Guilds, the NEAR Sandbox is slowly rolling out, and is expected to ramp up in February into Quarter 2.
NEAR Without the Noise Episode 9 will feature the NEAR DevEx Team led by Matt Lockyer as they detail their plans for onboarding hoards of developers in 2021.
Humans of NEAR is an original series on the backstory of the different NEAR team members. It is poised to launch in the coming weeks, with insights into the origins of NEAR, and unique stories in crypto.
Academics incoming – the 4NTS Vector strategy will officially launch in February, bringing in new perspectives, discussions, and contributors to the NEAR Ecosystem.