The Baking Sheet - Issue #115

7 days remaining for Kathmandu

Welcome to this week's issue of The Baking Sheet -- Just a reminder there are 7 days remaining to vote for Kathmandu in the final voting phase. Kathmandu builds on the theme for the previous Tezos upgrade, which is scalability. To learn more, Nomadic Labs published an in-depth piece on all the features included in the 11th upgrade for Tezos.

Focusing for this week, we want to highlight a very awesome builder in the Tezos ecosystem that we had the pleasure of meeting at Tez/Dev, Erwin Hoogerward, the founder of The Stack Report whom has built a beautiful data visualization platform for Tezos -- let's dive in.

Community Spotlight: The Stack Report

In this edition of the Tezos Community Spotlight, I had the exciting opportunity to sit down with Erwin Hoogerwoord, creator of The Stack Report — the powerful data visualization resource helping to tell the Tezos story to the world.

Erwin is a generative designer, a data scientist, and a builder of generative algorithms. He and the Stack Report team have made excellent progress toward their stated goal of creating, “THE data-driven visualization platform for analysis of the Tezos ecosystem” ever since The Stack Report went live in February of 2022.

During this time, Erwin has emerged as a key player in spreading the Tezos message to the masses, and the data visualizations he and The Stack Report team are generating have become a powerful new resource for showing off the astounding ongoing progress of the Tezos ecosystem. For these reasons and more, we’re all very excited to have Erwin doing his thing right here in the exciting Tezos space.

So let’s zoom in together and drill down into Erwin’s subterranean world of data visualization just a little bit to find out what makes this dynamic new Tezos creator tick…

Over the past months, Erwin and The Stack Report team have published numerous, well-received articles/visuals/analyses, the most recent of these being dashboards offering historic views of Tezos smart contract activity.

Today, with The Stack Report generating quickly-growing traffic and increased attention from across the Tezos ecosystem, Erwin’s future in the Tezos Community is looking brighter than ever. With new and exciting projects in the works for furthering its efforts to spread a more accessible Tezos message to the world, an impressed community of Tezos builders, creators, and ecosystem members wait eagerly to see what The Stack Report has in store for us next.

What does Erwin have to say about his accelerated journey into the Tezos ecosystem and the role that The Stack Report will play in this ecosystem’s growth in the months and years to come?

Let’s ask him…

A Quick Q&A with Erwin Hoogerwoord

1) For those who might not be familiar, how would you describe The Stack Report and its place in the Tezos ecosystem?

With The Stack Report, we create data-driven analyses, articles and tools to learn about the new tech “stack” for the internet, with a specific focus on the Tezos ecosystem. Our content is tailored to communicate the developments and ideas from the Tezos ecosystem to a broader audience, while at the same time being a data-driven learning and analysis resource for builders within the ecosystem. The main focus for now is the on-chain data from Tezos, which already provides plenty of food for analysis. Ranging from the network of bakers itself and things like on-chain governance on the lower layers of the stack, further up the stack we focus on the application layer with topics such as NFTs, DeFi, DAOs and on-chain gaming.

2) Why is it important to have these kinds of data visualizations to tell the Tezos story?

To ground ourselves in real data, to separate hype from reality in these early stages of this technology. Web3, blockchains, crypto are not a single thing, they are ecosystems of people, communities, technologies exploring concepts of decentralization and permission-less systems. Tezos isn’t one story either but a whole collection of people developing ideas, community, technology and culture.

The way I view it, most of the applications at this stage are basically still experiments to test out these ideas and technologies. Some are building with good intentions, while there are enough people with bad intentions as well unfortunately. A lot of people are very focussed on picking winners already from a monetary perspective. In my view we should focus on trying to capture and distribute as many of the learnings as possible from these early years. So that the version 2.0, 3.0 of apps, and more importantly the next waves of newly onboarding builders can as quickly as possible get to the leading edge of innovation in this space.

This is a collective learning exercise and I think Tezos has some of the most interesting experiments to learn from. So we need to communicate what are the projects built and tested on the Tezos chain, how are they set up and what is the data telling us about which ideas are working or not.

3) What was it about Tezos and the Tezos ecosystem that made you want to build The Stack Report here, as opposed to another blockchain?

What brought me in was the community of artists and spirit of experimentation. My initial encounter with Tezos was minting an Objkt on HicEtNunc during what was already the second objkt4objkt event, at the end of April, 2021. Following that, participating in the Hicathon was where I really got the sense of community and I got my hands dirty on the technology.

The fact that basically every major component from the node software, to indexers, smart contracts as well as front-ends for a number of applications are open source makes it so that you can really start building permissionlessly as well. Seeing the generative art and creative community continuing to grow in 2022 and the high quality of principles-based software design and engineering coming from the core protocol development teams is something that I want to continue to communicate and celebrate.

4) As somebody who spends so much time looking at Tezos-related data, what do you think people need to understand about the state of the Tezos ecosystem in 2022?

That we are really at the beginning phases of a blockchain ecosystem. For Tezos there is only about ~2 years worth of real activity data to look back on. We’re at the phase where we are a small city in terms of users and projects. There are currently around 10k daily active wallets and up to 100k wallets actively delegating. For applications there are roughly in the range of 500 to a thousand contracts being used per day. Most of these contracts are part of some application and can be attributed to a couple dozen or so teams building on Tezos. With these numbers it’s within the range of possibility to know all of those teams by name and have a sense of the individuals involved. Tezos has some sub-communities (i.e. neighborhoods) but it’s small enough as an individual to have a social overview of the major and minor people involved across the entirety of the Tezos ecosystem in 2022.

This is partly constrained technologically through block space, transaction speeds etc, although the main constraint at the moment is more that it just takes time and day-to-day effort to grow a community of builders and users of killer apps. At the same time there is a scaling roadmap in place for Tezos to, at least technologically, have the capacity to scale up to millions of users interacting with thousands of applications. That’s not going to happen overnight, but if or when that happens, Tezos in 2022 is going to feel very small.

5) What excites you about the trends you’re seeing take shape in the Tezos ecosystem today?

Smart contracts becoming composable lego blocks for developers & creators. In the defi space they’ve coined the term money legos. For Tezos you see the FA2.0 token standard proving itself and functioning as intended in facilitating permission-less application building with cross-app integrations by default. With more tooling for smart contracts written across a variety of programming languages, developers can quickly try out and iterate on smart contract ideas.

When I’m doing front-end development, being able to npm install a whole range of React components within seconds is what fuels the creativity to build complex digital experiences. Getting to the point where developers are able to try out smart contract mechanisms with a similar speed, so that within the timeline of a hackathon they can try out new mechanisms on test net and such is what we need to validate the right ideas and mechanisms for new standards development as well.

Combine this with the possibility to look at any smart contract, see how it’s being used and how it integrates within the broader network of smart contracts through visualizations from the stack report, hopefully is going to enable the next wave of developers to converge on another layer of standardized lego blocks to complement the existing token standards.

6) What’s next for The Stack Report? Anything exciting in the works?

In this first phase of the project, working out analyses, dashboards, and data pipelines was also a learning journey for myself and the team. In the next phase of the project, the goal is to extend that process of analysis and learning with ways for the Tezos community to actively participate and contribute. The concepts for this are being refined as we speak and development will start soon. I’m intentionally being a bit vague here but excited to share when it’s ready!

The story of the ongoing evolution of Tezos and the progress its ecosystem has made in its short time in the wild is one that very much needs to be told. And, because data is such an integral part of telling that story and sharing it with the world, the work Erwin and the Stack Report team are doing is becoming more important by the day.

We at the Tezos Commons look forward to seeing a lot more from Erwin and The Stack Report in the months to come, and their efforts to make Tezos’ data accessible and easy to understand through data visualization are hugely appreciated!

Explore the Tezos Ecosystem

The Tezos Ecosystem is home to builders, creators, and innovators with a range of projects focusing on NFTs, Gaming, and Finance. From talented teams like Baking Bad or large scale partnerships like Manchester Untied.

There are over 92 projects submitted on the Tezos Ecosystem hub, have you submit yours yet?

This Week in the Tezos Ecosystem

Ahead of an electric performance from Doja Cat, fans can indulge in a fruity collection in partnership with OneOf.

The Tezos batch minting tool is out of beta. Come and give Hyperminter a try for your next collection

As part of its mission to support the development of the Tezos ecosystem by deploying funds for projects, the Tezos Foundation is now offering special bounties to solve a concrete demand that technical experts in the Tezos community have identified as highly beneficial.

fx(text) is here. And it’s bringing a new way to create, share, and own content to fxhash. As the first full-fledged web3 publishing platform on Tezos, we believe fx(text) can change how we document and discuss vital contributions that push art forward.

Right now, the most anticipated event in Tezos is the activation of the Kathmandu update. But apart from that, there will be some cool decentralized apps!

The naan gallery will showcase NFTs collected by our curator Varun Desai, also known as Varundo on Twitter. The naan collection is a way to celebrate the amazing artists creating work on Tezos

Everyone can now register and download a Windows or Mac version of the trading card game running on the Tezos blockchain.

The joyful mobile-first play-to-earn game, Dogamí, will be launching in the early stage on September 14, 2022.

Tezos India's TIGL partners with IndiGG to foster Web3 Gaming Adoption in the Indian Subcontinent.

This Week in Tezos Development

It features further support for the reverse-application operator in Cameligo, enabling compositional function calls from left to right, with few to no parentheses

Join LigoLang by Marigold and Tezos Israel in the Ligo Developer Training: Using Tickets

Deku is a sidechain (Layer 2) solution for Tezos: both a public network run by Tezos core devs & a framework to build your permissioned blockchain.

Fact: The Tezos ecosystem is full of talented people. It’s one of the many things that has positioned Tezos as a very appealing option for building the blockchain tools and applications of tomorrow.

Now Streaming

Tune in to our latest TezTalks Radio episode featuring renown artist, Sasha Stiles

Sasha Stiles is a critically-acclaimed poet, artist, AI researcher and innovation strategist probing the intersection of text and technology.

Her work has been exhibited in analog and virtual realms, honored in the Future Art Awards, nominated for the Pushcart Prize, Forward Prize and Best of the Net, and published on Tezos.

Sasha provides some incredible, thought-provoking insights on the future of NFTs — this is an episode you don't want to miss!

Now Streaming Everywhere

Arthur Breitman Series

Don't miss the latest videos from the co-founder of Tezos, Arthur Breitman -- head over to his YouTube channel for the latest insights.