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Allocation Update: Q1 2021

Posted by Ecosystem Support Program Team on July 1, 2021

Allocation Update: Q1 2021

Happy July! Read on for the list of projects funded in Q1 of this year.

But first: office hours are in session! Signups are open now through this Sunday (July 4) for teams or individuals to request a one-on-one call with the ESP team during the week of July 5-9. These calls are a simplified way for teams or individuals to access certain types of support such as high-level feedback, resource recommendations or guidance on applying for grants. More info and guidelines here.

Q1 Funded Projects

On to the real stars of the show - the outstanding teams and individuals who received funding in Q1!

Community & educationChina ecosystem developmentETHPlanetSupport for ETHPlanet's ecosystem building initiatives in China, including working with students and universities, events, community organization, and educational resources.
Community & educationDE-FERENCEDecipherResearch and discussion-focused blockchain conference run by Decipher, a blockchain society at Seoul National University.
Community & educationDevspace Virtual HackathonComputer Society of IndiaStudent-run hackathon organized by the Computer Society of India, targeting developers, researchers and students.
Community & educationETHGlobalVirtual and in-person hackathons focused on building the Ethereum developer community through learning opportunities and hands-on support for hackers.
Community & educationInformational websitesDeployment of a series of easily digestible, informational and educational websites about the Ethereum ecosystem
Community & educationRussian-speaking ecosystem developmentSponsorship of a series of Russian-language virtual Ethereum meetups
Community & educationWeb3 Teacher Training ProgramBlockchain Acceleration FoundationDevelopment of a curriculum and course to train university students and professors to become educators in Ethereum development, aiming to provide them with a foundation to lead educational initiatives at their respective universities.
Consensus LayerBeacon Chain Network Topological AnalysisShreyas SamagaApplying topological data analysis techniques to aspects of the beacon chain network including visualization of validator behavior, insights into the structure and health of the p2p network, and inspection of key consensus metrics.
Consensus LayerBeacon Chain Ransom AttackDeMontfort UniversityProof of concept of a ransomware attack on Ethereum validators, illustrating the need for more secure infrastructure for large providers.
Consensus LayerChainGuardianNodeFactoryApplication and graphical interface for managing multiple validators and beacon nodes with statistics and monitoring.
Consensus LayerLodestarChainSafeContinued development the Lodestar JS beacon chain client, with goals including light client R&D, improved tooling and documentation, and preparation for the Altair hardfork.
Consensus LayerPrysmPrysmatic LabsContinued development of the Prysm client, focusing on beacon chain production support and refinement, as well as R&D on Altair, the Merge, and Sharding.
Consensus LayerShard Data Proof of Custody MPCPlatonContinued research and development on multi-party computation for setting up ethereum validators and decentralized staking pools.
Consensus Layerssz.devWebsite resources documenting and demonstrating the SSZ serialization standard, including a visualization playground and React-based SSZ implementation.
Consensus LayertPlonkChristian RechbergerResearch and development on tPlonk, a SNARK-friendly lookup based hash function.
Cryptography & zero knowledge proofsDark Forest Infrastructure and ToolingBlaine Bublitz and Jacob RosenthalContinued work on zero knowledge tooling, infrastructure and community developer support in connection with Dark Forest.
Cryptography & zero knowledge proofsBLS Global WalletJames ZakiL2 wallet contract replacing ECDSA signatures with compressed BLS signatures in optimistic rollups.
Cryptography & zero knowledge proofsC.R.E.A.M.CougerDevelopment of a protocol for secure, anonymous, and verifiable voting technology, as well as additional zero knowledge R&D and enterprise adoption efforts.
Cryptography & zero knowledge proofsCLR.fund UISpencer GrahamEnhancements to the CLR.fnd user interface, aiming to create an application that can be deployed by anyone to run their own CLR funding round.
Cryptography & zero knowledge proofsDark ForestContinued work on Dark Forest, a decentralized and persistent RTS (real-time strategy) game, demonstrating use of zk-snarks to construct “incomplete information” environments where users can keep a private state while publicly submitting verifiably valid actions. Dark Forest was created to demonstrate the capability of this framework to create complex environmental and strategic dynamics in decentralized gaming.
Cryptography & zero knowledge proofsForum Moderation with Prediction MarketsSmart contracts and automoderator bots for using prediction markets to mitigate spam in online forums.
Cryptography & zero knowledge proofsMicroMix v2AitivityExtensions to MicroMix, an ETH and ERC-20 mixer built on Semaphore, including the ability to deploy a new contract for any denomination, a mixer registry to avoid splitting liquidity, enablig layer 2 deployment, and a fully open-source and non-minified user interface.
Cryptography & zero knowledge proofsMPC Phase 2Geoff LamperdProductionizing a suite of components for browser-based trusted setup ceremonies.
Cryptography & zero knowledge proofsOptimism Security AssessmentKyle CharbonnetSecurity assessment of the Optimism codebase, resulting in a report detailling Optimism's design and code structure and pointing out security vulnerabilites.
Cryptography & zero knowledge proofsReputation Proving Service: Design and SpecificationJay GraberDesign and specification for a reputation proving service that exports cryptographic proofs of user attributes from existing sites where users have accrued reputation such as Github or Twitter, which can be verified by sites or decentralized applications.
Cryptography & zero knowledge proofsReputation Proving Service: DevelopmentRaphael RoulletDevelopment of a reputation proving service that exports cryptographic proofs of user attributes from existing sites (such as Github or Twitter) to be verified by sites or decentralized applications.
Cryptography & zero knowledge proofsRollup Block Explorer Site DesignRachel AkerleyUX strategy and UI design for a rollup block explorer dashboard, including research-informed information architecture and visual identity.
Cryptography & zero knowledge proofsRollup Diff CompressionBlagoj DimovskResearch paper and proof of concept for efficiently storing data on the blockchain while using rollups for the airdrop use case.
Cryptography & zero knowledge proofsUnirep SocialDesign a smart contract requiring users on a Unirep-based private and decentralized social media platform to risk reputation in order to post, with any post resulting in a reduction or addition of their total reputation score.
Cryptography & zero knowledge proofszk Data MarketplaceJacksoom LiuDesign for a trustless data market using a smart contract to allow encrypted data to be published for sale, while buyers can confirm authenticity using a segment of exposed data and a ZKP issued by the seller.
Cryptography & zero knowledge proofsZkopru Stress TestingStress testing, monitoring tools, CI setup and cluster testing scripts for Zkopru, a layer-2 scaling solution for private transactions using zk-SNARK and optimistic rollup.
Developer experience & toolingETH Winter Education ResourcesNick UlvenConversion of resources from the ETH Winter program, including Intro to Eth documents, mentor reading lists and quests, into a publicly consumable format.
Developer experience & toolingGASOL: Gas Analysis and Optimization ToolkitUniversidad Complutense MadridDevelopment of a super-optimizer for Ethereum smart contracts that optimizes block-by-block by searching for instruction sequences that are semantically equivalent to the original sequence in the block but consume less gas, aiming to reduce overall transaction costs and increase transaction capacity.
Developer experience & toolingSoftware Engine for Game Theoretical ModelingUniversity of St. Gallen and StateboxSoftware engine for game theoretic modelling of compositional games, e.g. auction mechanisms or governance structures, using Compositional Game Theory.
Developer experience & toolingweb3swiftUniversal library providing web3 functionalities in the Swift language, to enable building of full-featured native dApps in the Mac/iOS ecosystem.
Developer experience & toolingZkopru Ceremony Site DesignRachel AkerleyUser-friendly website design for the zkopru rollup trusted setup ceremony.
Execution LayerEIP 1559 R&DBesuCoordination of efforts to prepare EIP 1559 for adoption by core devs and clients.
Execution LayerBesuMaintenance and development on the Besu eth1 client.
Execution LayerNethermindMaintenance and development on the Nethermind eth1 client.
Execution LayerNimbusMaintenance and development on the Nimbus eth1 client.
Execution LayerOpenEthereumMaintenance and development on the Erigon (fka TurboGeth) eth1 client.
Execution LayerErigonMaintenance and development on OpenEthereum, a takeover of the Parity client.
Indirect fundingBaseline ProtocolFunding for Baseline Grants supporting research, development and adoption of the Baseline protocol, which allows businesses to synchronize their systems of record and reduce costly errors in B2B transactions.
Indirect FundingCLR MatchingGitcoinMatching funds to rounds 9 and 10 of Gitcoin's CLR grants, funding public goods in the Ethereum ecosystem.
Indirect fundingCLR.FNDDevelopment of a production-ready version of clr.fund, a decentralized quadratic funding protocol using BrightID and MACI to to enable permissionless, pseudonymous, and minimally-trustful protocol-level funding for Ethereum.
Layer 2StablePay Layer 2 SDKSDK for accepting payments and optionally converting them to stablecoins via multiple L2s with one API.
Verifiable Delay FunctionsBiprimality research paper reviewBenjamin WesolowskiDeep review of a research paper titled "Big primes make me high: New results on biprimality testing" by Dmitry Khovratovich and Mary Maller, to validate a breakthrough result in biprimality testing which could facilitate large scale RSA MPCs.

Total awarded in Q1: $5,341,000

Are you working on something you think could change Ethereum for the better? Head to our grants page to learn more about what we look for in the projects we fund.