AIP Draft: Catapult - Process Proposal
This proposal introduces a tool (Catapult) that will help us unlock the power of the ApeCoin DAO community and put ourselves at the heart of the Web3 ecosystem.
The biggest challenge for all decentralized communities is the lack of context. Without easy ways to share who you are, what you’ve done, and to represent it to your community, it’s impossible to effectively contribute and build relationships.
Catapult resolves this, empowering the community and its members, and driving value to the ApeDAO community (and therefore to APE).
The ApeCoin DAO community is powerful.
But, we can’t access that full power without overcoming a problem that even the most respected DAOs are plagued with.
That problem is the lack of context in decentralized communities. Context is what makes everything make sense; it enables collaboration, facilitates contribution, empowers governance, and so much more.
Without it, we’re working by candlelight. The touch points between all of us here are endless, but we are not yet using the best tools and systems to unlock even deeper mechanics for value creation. Introducing true and complete context into our ecosystem can enable us to drastically change how our DAO performs, and hopefully set an example for all other DAOs to come. I believe that Catapult turns on the lights.
It’s a tool that has been built with other tier 1 DAOs, the team has proven ability to execute, and the product can help the ApeCoin community do more, together.
The Catapult product experience…
- It starts with a frictionless onboarding flow that encompasses three key elements:
- Token gate (via wallet): to ensure only verified members of the community have access
- Learn: key context shared about the DAO so new joiners can easily learn about the mission, values, governance, structure, and anything else
- Share: new joiners can add whatever context they chose to showcase to other members of the community (all but the essential fields are optional)
- This context flows into multi-faceted Web3 profiles that reflect your Web3 identity, where you contribute, and which communities you belong in without impacting pseudonymity.
- Connect Wallet: as well as ensuring that everyone who is given access is a verified member of ApeCoin DAO, this element also enables Ape’s to seamlessly use NFTs as profile pictures, as well as to reveal / hide any of the NFTs in their wallet and decide who has access.
- Social Discoverability: Ape’s can link to any social platforms they choose, in order to improve discoverability by other Apes in spaces like Twitter etc.
- Additional Wallets: all your apes in one place!
At any point, members can easily add or remove elements and modify privacy settings that control privacy and visibility.
All data displayed in Catapult will always remain 100% the property of the user. Any user can withdraw their data and take it anywhere they choose, they can also offboard at any time. Catapult will protect their right to be forgotten.
- I added the full mockup of my profile at the end of the proposal. So you have to make it all the way through to see how good they look!
- You can see who else is there, what opportunities they are open to, and learn about them. This makes it easier to start a conversation, kick off a new collaboration, and so much more.
- All of the tools used by the DAO can be accessed from one central ‘home’. This is where things get really interesting. Eventually, our ‘home’ becomes the living portrait of our DAO and where our members’ journey begins.
- In addition to existing integrations, Catapult has also made progress exploring ApeCoin DAO specific integrations, including with Ape Gazette and POAP Voting Awards, amongst others.
Some initial ideas on what this could look like (arrows to highlight):
The team is actively initiating other discussions and will share updates in the comments on Discourse.
- Members own their data and can manage their privacy throughout. As technology evolves, the team is committed to pushing towards greater decentralization.
There are multiple reasons to implement this proposal.
Beyond the fact that there is no currently existing infrastructure for Apes to identify, understand, and contact each other.
#1: Expanding engagement & participation in ApeCoin DAO
Catapult reduces friction around participation, increases awareness around the mission and activities of the DAO, and strengthens bonds between the individuals that make up our community.
Of the 307m APE in circulation, if you exclude the first 5 proposals, the average participation across the remaining 23 proposals was only 3.5m APE each, slightly over 1% of APE in circulation. Including big decisions like whether or not to stay in the Ethereum ecosystem.
We have c.50,000 members of the ApeCoin DAO community, but our highest engagement on a Discourse proposal only had 21 people commenting.
There will always be a strong core of Apes willing to go further and contribute more. But currently the broader Ape community is too dispersed with few contact points between Apes, minimal ways to organise initiatives or co-create new ideas, etc.
Solving this is key to achieving the DAO’s vision.
#2: Reducing operational workload for ApeCoin DAO
People join a DAO excited about the possibilities, but they’re quickly lost in either a lack of information or an information firehose.
To address this, community leaders often fall back on time-intensive 1:1 calls, manual entries of information, and laborious airtable / google form data capture.
This isn’t effective, doesn’t scale, and it won’t work for ApeCoin DAO.
Catapult ensures that each (verified) new member of the DAO has a seamless and effortless onboarding. The platform guides new joiners to the right starting point(s) without manual intervention from DAO organisers.
#3: ApeCoin DAO can take its place at the heart of Web3 and shape foundational infrastructure for DAOs
One of ApeCoin DAO’s core missions is to push culture to the metaverse and ensure that Web3 is built in an accessible and responsible manner.
Catapult is already working with leading DAOs like Index Coop and Aragon, and is in discussions with a number of other Tier 1 DAOs (to be announced in November).
ApeCoin DAO can take its place at the heart of Web3 and shape infrastructure that will be relevant to every single DAO and decentralized community.
The Catapult platform is built using node.js for the backend and next.js for the frontend. The team are excited about the future of decentralized databases, and monitor their progress closely. However, for now they are using Firebase for privacy and security reasons.
Otherwise the only things worth mentioning are:
- Integrations - this can range from Discord, Discourse, Coordinape, Snapshot, etc. The goal is to make the end-user experience as seamless as possible whilst contextualising all the information that is needed onto a platform.
- Analytics - tools like Posthog and Intercom enable them to support members, monitor and track against KPIs, and improve and iterate into a better platform.
Catapult will be responsible for providing all labor and have agreed to do this at their own expense.
I propose to bring together a steering committee of ApeCoin DAO members (‘Proposal Steering Committee’) to provide input and review.
The committee would consist of, but would not be limited to the following Apes:
- Lior.eth - founder Eden Block & Mutant Cartel, Proposal Lead
- Ben Mayor White
- Red Hat
- Jason Ball
Rav, Greg, and the Catapult team are backed by key founders and investors across Web3 including Blockchain Capital and Eden Block (the root of my connection with the team).
That is because they understand DAOs and they have a team that can execute quickly and to impeccable standards.
Rav was a Bain strategist and EMEA Lead in Facebook, and Greg holds a PhD in Maths/Computer Science from the University of Cambridge. Greg has been thinking deeply about privacy and Web3 reputation since 2017 and has been mentored by some of the world’s leading experts in cryptography and computer science.
Across the team they have co-created a field in mathematics, built the largest decentralised newsroom in the world, built state of the art machine learning algorithms, developed award-winning video games controllers, published many papers in many journals, built and sold companies in Mongolia and Singapore, pushed the frontiers of social fintech in India and automated derivatives trading (and that’s just the fun stuff!)
Recent backers of Catapult:
The full platform could be deployed across the full DAO within 12 weeks.
Timeline & Milestones
The key milestones and timings for this project that we suggest working towards:
- Target start date: 21st November
- Target rollout decision: 16th January
- Target deployment by: 13th February
Some of the KPIs Catapult will be tracking to define and assess ongoing milestones are (non-exhaustive):
- Number of members onboarded
- Profile completion / usage
- Profile views by each member
- Number of connections made on Catapult
All the above are used to assess engagement on the platform, to guide iterations, and ensure it is as useful as possible to ApeCoin DAO members.
Catapult will contribute 100% of their time and labour at zero cost to ApeCoin DAO.
However, we do request an allocation of 10,000 APE for member onboarding incentives.
The full allocation would be used to incentivise members to go through the onboarding flow, which helps everyone learn more about the DAO (including basic structure, mission, values, governance, and more), build their profile, and take their first steps towards broader participation and connection in the DAO.
We are proposing that the first 5,000 members who go through this flow will each receive 2 APE.
Catapult will also provide other incentives at its own cost. This will include, for example, POAPs for early members — which the team intends to form part of future reward programs.
Catapult is a fast-growing startup backed by some of the most influential builders and investors in Web3. This team is here to ship something important for the greatest DAO in Web3. As such, I propose we shape the best tool for the DAOs of Web3 alongside this team. I see this as an incredible way to create value for our community, and greatly improve the UX of our engaged members. Onboarding into the ApeCoin DAO should be the clearest, most efficient onboarding in Web3. And for existing DAO members, we should make their experience one to remember - and an engagement worth keeping. I’m proud to propose working with a product as powerful as Catapult, and to help in the shaping of it alongside the Catapult team and the Ape Cohort mentioned above.
Full Profile Mockup