AIP-442: Grant Ships: Accelerating ApeCoin's Ecosystem Evolution


PROPOSAL NAME:

Grant Ships: Accelerating ApeCoin’s Ecosystem Evolution

TEAM DESCRIPTION:

Our team, the DAO Masons, is composed of seasoned Web3 professionals dedicated to advancing decentralized ecosystems. Our collective expertise spans project management, software engineering, UI/UX design, and computer science.

We originally met as core members of DAOhaus, driven by a passion for DAOs and effective governance design.

Our mission at DAO Masons is to “help DAOs win”. Like many in our space, we are eager to onboard the next billion crypto users and ensure the infrastructure is in place to support this growth.

Name Roles Relevant Experience Contact
Chris (Boiler) Outreach, BizDev, UX Research, Documentation Contributor and founder at DAO Masons, DAOhaus (Public HAUS), Metacartel, and Public Nouns. Much of my focus in Web3 has centered around grants, both in writing proposals and in evaluating and guiding grantees. Extensive IRL project experience in construction. Telegram: Contact @boilerrat
Jord Product Manager, Engineering Lead Lead developer and founder at DAO Masons, web3 developer at DAOHaus, Raid Guild Member, Builder Nouns, 5 Years Web3 Development Telegram: Contact @Jordeth
Matt (UI369) Project Manager, Game Design & UI/UX Lead, Documentation Lead Operations manager and founder at DAO Masons & DAOhaus (Public HAUS), former organizational design partner at HolacracyOne, 11 years of professional software development experience, Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science Telegram: Contact @ui369

PROPOSAL DESCRIPTION:

Grant Ships: Accelerating ApeCoin Ecosystem Evolution aka “Ape Ships” is a proposed grants funding game specifically for ApeCoin DAO in support of ApeChain ecosystem development. The Grant Ships game is an “evolutionary grants meta-framework” that lets a DAO choose multiple teams of grant allocators (aka ‘Grant Ship Operators’) who compete to best allocate funds within a given domain.

This proposal is to fund 1 round of the Grant Ships game with the option to fund future rounds if the DAO likes the program. The Grant Ships platform provides a dynamic, transparent, onchain and community-driven funding initiative customized for the ApeCoin ecosystem to strategically fund sectors critical for the growth of ApeChain. This process will help ApeCoin DAO discover and empower the best allocators and the best projects aligned with their mission.

The Grant Ships game is at its heart a smart-contract-enforced governance system for grants programs. This means that the Grant Ships game has a clear ruleset and governance pathway where every in-game interaction is backed by an onchain transaction.

ApeCoin holders are involved at key junctures to ensure appropriate voter influence on outcomes without creating voter overwhelm or fatigue. DAO Voters influence funding direction primarily through Ship Operator and Game Facilitator elections and periodic TCR-gated Ship Operator portfolio reviews — the results of which determine relative Ship funding levels going forward.

Under the hood, Grant Ships uses Allo Protocol and Hats Protocol to provide reliable and flexible funding with revokable permissions — ensuring the DAO maintains control of the funds earmarked for grant allocation. All transactions and governance actions are recorded on-chain and presented publicly, fostering an environment of transparency, accountability and trust.

Additionally, the game can be played without the competitive aspect, serving as an open, transparent grant distribution protocol. Funding can be given to any group to distribute as grants using the app, ensuring all steps are open and available to DAO members.

Grant Ships: Accelerating ApeCoin’s Ecosystem Evolution aims to create a sustainable and scalable funding model that grows with ApeChain, supporting its development into a premier blockchain ecosystem.

BENEFIT TO APECOIN ECOSYSTEM:

  • Enhanced Community Governance:

    • Voter Engagement: One of the goals of Grant Ships is to identify skilled allocators and empower them with the necessary tools to make effective funding decisions. The DAO has the opportunity to elect individuals or teams they believe will excel in these roles. A DAO vote also determines relative Ship funding levels for subsequent rounds.
      • Candidates are encouraged to self-nominate and actively campaign for their preferred roles. The election process will be facilitated through on-chain multi-choice voting, leveraging ApeCoin. To accommodate this, the creation of an additional module may be required to enable ApeCoin’s integration into the voting mechanism. The positions available for election are Facilitators and Ship Operators. Additionally, these roles may be appointed directly by the DAO’s councils if deemed more suitable for the DAO’s needs.
    • Feedback: Every in-game action is recorded onchain and can be verified by any member of the DAO. This data provides the DAO with all the information needed to make informed decisions about how to run the game (e.g. ship funding and administrator elections).
  • Targeted Ecosystem Growth:

    • Focused Funding Rounds: This proposal describes a funding round description that instructs Ship Operators and Grant Applicants to support the growth of ApeChain by funding and creating projects that fall the following categories:
      • Infrastructure - ApeChain tools, protocols, frameworks, etc.
      • DeFi - Financial platforms and initiatives
      • Gaming - onchain game loops, NFT collections, etc.
      • Other - the unexpected and creative
    • Adaptive Domain Allocation: The DAO retains the flexibility to adjust the focus of future funding rounds based on emerging strategic needs.
    • Community Driven: The Grant Ships framework allows every DAO member to influence funding decisions without frequent votes or the need to gain massive context before every voting.
  • Competitive Excellence:

    • Performance-Based Funding: Our model incentivizes high performance among grant allocators by directly linking their funding to demonstrated impact of their grants. This meritocratic approach encourages each Ship to strive for excellence. The better the results they deliver relative to the other Ships, the more funding they receive. This encourages a continuous drive for improvement and innovation.
      • Grant allocators verify the completion of funding-related milestones through a multi-step process. Initially, projects outline their intended milestones as part of the application procedure. Game Facilitators then have the responsibility to assess and approve these milestones.
      • Once a grant is sanctioned and the project has successfully undergone KYC and consented to our compliance policy, they are required to submit detailed reports of their milestones through the App. The Ship Operator meticulously reviews these submissions to ascertain whether the reported milestones align with the approved plan.
      • Subsequent to the Ship Operator’s validation, the Game Facilitator will also validate and is authorized to release the allocated funds to the project. This systematic approach ensures that only those projects that fulfill their proposed objectives receive the funding.
      • The following screenshots are what a milestone report looks like in the app:

Screenshot from 2024-06-11 21-44-16
- Impact Measurement: Grant Ships does not evaluate impact directly, instead providing numerous onchain events detailing all activity within the grants program, which can be fed into external impact evaluation systems.
- Accountability Mechanisms: While encouraging excellence and freedom to run a Ship how operators choose, our system also has strong accountability mechanisms in place.
* Underperformance: In cases where a Ship repeatedly underperforms or fails to meet the community’s standards of integrity and impact, the DAO has the authority to defund them completely or revoke their ability to allocate funds. There is also a “flag” system in place which allows the game facilitator to take immediate action if a Ship’s actions are outside of compliance.
* Graduated Consequences: A yellow flag can be issued by Game Facilitators which acts as additional context to voters during TCR votes. A red flag is issued for obvious, repeated or intentional violations by a Grant Ship. A red flag suspends a Ship’s ability to distribute funding, until and only if, the DAO reinstates the Ship’s permissions through a TCR vote.

  • Cultural Reinforcement: By tying funding to performance and making the outcomes publicly available, we foster a culture of accountability and excellence within the DAO ecosystem. Operators are motivated not only by potential funding but also by the prestige and recognition that come from being a top-performing Ship.
  • Competitive and Collaborative: The competitive environment provided by the Grant Ships game will attract high-quality projects and allocators who are committed to the success of ApeChain. We also anticipate patterns of cooperation, skill-sharing and seeking of win/wins among ships and builders in the interest of creating something awesome as a community.

Sample portion of feed from the Grant Ships App from a live grant round

  • Documentation and Reporting: Feeds generated from smart contract data are accessible through the Grant Ships app. These feeds detail funding activities providing key metrics and insights for voters to use during decision making.

    • Compliance Policy and Attestation: Fund allocations must be approved by a Game Faciltator before they can be distributed by a Grant Ship. This provides the DAO with the option to implement policies and prerequisites for grant recipients (e.g. KYC compliance, AML procedures, etc.). This takes the responsibility and potential conflict of interest from the Grant Ship operators and lets them focus on making wise allocation decisions.
      • The duty of performing due diligence, including KYC/KYB checks, is assigned to the elected Game Facilitators. They are tasked with ensuring compliance with all ApeCoin DAO regulations. Our contracts stipulate that Ship Operators are not involved in handling grant funds; instead, a Game Facilitator is required to authorize fund transfers to grant recipients. This occurs only after verifying that all requirements have been fulfilled.

DEFINITIONS:

Allocation
The act of setting money aside for a particular recipient, before distribution. Occurs in 3 places within the game: the allocation of funds made to the game as a whole, the split allocation made to each Grant Ship and the allocations made by the Ships for individual grant recipients.
Allo Protocol
A strategic allocation tool used for managing funds within the Grant Ships framework. [Learn more about Allo Protocol](https://allo.gitcoin.co/).
Community Voting Mechanism
Grant Ships uses a Token Curated Registry for most community decisions. We currently use Jokerace for this task and plan to integrate our own custom TCR capabilities directly within the dApp.
Distribution
The process of distributing funds to projects, carried out by Ships to Grantees from their allocated resources.
Ethereum Attestation Service (EAS)
EAS allows users to make attestation on or off chain, about anything.
Facilitators
Central role within the game charged with daily oversight and operational tasks, including approving milestones by grantees and releasing funds.
Flags
A system in which a game facilitator can issue warnings to a ship or halt its activities altogether.
Grant Ship
A "subDAO" of Ship Operators, ideally comprised of ApeCoin DAO members who are most closely connected to the DAO's requirements and culture.
Grant Ships
A decentralized, competitive framework for grant distribution.
Hats Protocol
A protocol that employs NFTs for role management, enhancing security and flexibility in governance.
IPFS
Interplanetary File System is a decentralized data storage system.
KYC,>KYC, KYB, KYT
Know Your Customer, Know Your Business and Know Your Transaction refers to processes that identify individuals using official identification documents and photos, to help with anti-sybil defense and legal compliance (e.g. anti-money laundering laws, sanctions lists, tax compliance, etc).
Milestone
A system used by Grant Ships, where grant applicants must submit proposals with clearly defined development milestones. Funds are released upon completion of these milestones, adding a layer of security for the DAO.
Ship Operators
Selected teams or individuals responsible for "manning a Grant Ship" - responsibile for distributing grants to projects within the Grant Ships program.
subDAO
A sub DAO refers to a semi-soveriegn entity within a DAO charged with making decisions within their area of expertise. In Grant Ships, a Grant Ship is a subDAO, comprised of members of ApeCoin DAO charged with awarding grants.
Token Curated Registry (TCR)
A Token Curated Registry (TCR) is a mechanism that leverages token-based incentives to maintain a list of curated items or entries. In a TCR, token holders vote on a list of items and balance their votes based on preference of choice.

To participate in the Token Curated Registry (TCR) for community decisions, token holders must adhere to the following requirements:

  • Token Ownership: There is no minimum token ownership required. Token holders can participate and vote with any amount of tokens they possess.

  • Wallet Connection: Participants must connect their wallet to interact with the TCR/App.

  • Token Type: The tokens referred to in this context are ApeCoins. However, we can use any ERC20 token, including the possibility of a new token on ApeChain.

  • Snapshot Verification: Due to the absence of the ERC20votes function in the ApeCoin contract, a merkle root snapshot is used. This snapshot stores the holders’ addresses and their respective balances on-chain at a specific point in time, ensuring accurate and fair representation in votes.

This process is designed to be inclusive and accessible, allowing for broad participation from the community in decision-making.

The Token Curated Registry (TCR) is primarily utilized for elections and determining the impact of Grant Ships at the conclusion of a round. Decisions regarding game parameters, such as the number of Ships, the funding amount per round, and the duration of rounds, are not subject to TCR voting at present. However, integrating these aspects into the TCR voting process may be considered for future implementation.

PLATFORMS & TECHNOLOGIES:

Grant Ships integrates Allo Protocol for fund management and Hats Protocol for dynamic role governance, alongside custom smart contracts to ensure security, transparency, and efficacy in grant allocation.

Allo Protocol
Developed by Gitcoin, Allo allows for secure fund allocation and distribution. Individual Ships are allocated funding for a particular grants season. These funds are redistributed as Grants, based on a Ship’s allocation decisions. Ship operators do not have direct access to funds after they are deposited into our custom Allo contract. When a Ship chooses to award a grant a Game Facilitator finalizes the allocation, and then Grant Ships are free to make distributions after successful completion of milestones.
Hats Protocol
Grant Ships has integrated Hats protocol into our allocation strategy contract to provide revocable, reassignable permissions to game participants in the form of an ERC1155 NFT known as a “Hat”. This mechanism allows the DAO itself to hold something called a "Top Hat" which grants it the right to revoke or reassign all roles beneath it. Game Facilitators and Grant Ship Operators are granted permission to allocate and distribute funds by their Hats, and those Hats are in turn managed by the DAO.

Game Facilitators are allocated Hats tokens, which endow them with specific contract permissions. These tokens are designed to be revocable and reassignable by the entity holding the ‘Top Hat’ token. We advocate for this ‘Top Hat’ token to be entrusted to the Special Council multisig, ensuring that permissions are not irrevocably tied to any single individual.
Should a Ship Operator or Game Facilitator deviate from their designated responsibilities, the ‘Top Hat’ bearer has the prerogative to execute transactions within the Hats contract to realign or rescind these permissions.

Other technologies that we have implemented and/or plan to integrate to improve the game include:

Ethereum Attestation Service (EAS)
Used to attest that Grant Ship operators agree not to fund projects aimed at avoiding legal sanctions or engaging in other criminal activities. [Learn more about EAS](https://attest.sh)
IPFS Some vital metadata from the game is stored on IPFS. [Learn more about IPFS](https://ipfs.tech)
<summary>Impact Evaluation</summary>
<br>

Grant Ships provides numerous onchain events detailing all activity within the grants program, which can be fed into external impact evaluation programs. This is a conscious decision to not directly implement impact evaluation and instead operate as a data source for whichever evaluation mechanism the DAO chooses to use.

JokeRace
We use JokeRace for our token curated voting and we are currently designing an integrated voting mechanism for the future. Note: We are currently phasing jokerace out in favour of our own TCR protocol, which enables us to integrate in game voting directly into the dApp.
The Graph and/or GoldSky
We currently use the Graph and GoldSky for our Data indexing services switching between them based on which is working better at the moment. Used for data indexing services. [Learn more about The Graph](https://thegraph.com)
Fractal ID

How The Game Works

A game of Grant Ships begins when a game facilitator initiates a round by depositing funds into the Grant Ships contract (this is our custom implementation of the Allo protocol contracts). If “Ships” have not already been established, the DAO will go through the process of selecting which Ships will be allocated funding to distribute as grants. We will be able to aid in this process as well through the implementation of a TCR vote.

Once the Ships are established, they will be ready to go. The DAO will also decide on the length of the round, but during this time, the Ships will determine which projects they will allocate funding to. Each winning applicant will then go through the KYC process (unless this is not a requirement for the DAO). If everything checks out and the game facilitators do not see any other glaring red flags, funds will then be distributed to the grantee. Our current funding strategy only enables “milestone”-based funding. With that, projects submit their milestones in the Grant Ships app, and funding is allocated based on the successful completion of milestones.

At the end of a funding season, all Ships are evaluated. A round report will be made by the facilitators, reporting all the Ships that have been awarded grants. There will also be interviews and observations made, and a full report made to the DAO. The DAO can use this information to determine which Ships were best at supporting impactful projects for Ape Chain.

As the next season begins, the DAO will have this information to determine the ratio of funding for each Ship. Thus, high-performing Ships should receive increased funding, while poor-performing Ships would receive less funding. The DAO may even consider replacing Ships at this point.

Security: Ensuring the safety of funds within the Grant Ships contract involves several layers of security and compliance measures. Although Game Facilitators have significant influence over fund allocation, they do not physically manage the funds. The DAO employs its standard procedures to transfer funds into the contract, ensuring that once deposited, no individual can distribute funds at will.

The grant distribution process is as follows:

  1. Ship Operators propose fund allocations by signaling in the app a project has been accepted for a grant.

  2. Game Facilitators review and either approve or reject the project and its milestones (example, if a project is out of scope for the round, they can reject the grant at this stage).

  3. Upon completion of a grant milestone, Operators signal the completion, facilitators review the milestone and upon acceptance, funds are transferred to the grantee.

These actions are governed by Hats tokens, which symbolize permissions and can be revoked if necessary. For the implementation of the AIP, we propose a direct deposit of 450,000 Ape Coin into the Grant Ships contract, which is a specialized version of the Allo Protocol contract, tailored to meet our specific requirements.

STEPS TO IMPLEMENT:

  1. Custom App Development & Audit (Week 1-6)
  • Details: We are working on our live beta test sponsored by Arbitrum DAO. We anticipate some needed changes to the core contracts after the test. This is also an opportunity to make minor customizations needed for the ApeCoin round and to perform a final audit before launch.
    • Cost: $40,000 (including $20,000 for the audit)
    • Personnel: Jord and Matt (development team), external auditors
    • Platforms: GitHub, Forge
    • Projected Start Date: Week 1
    • Projected End Date: Week 4
Click here for proof of Arbitrum participation

This is our weekly Dev Log that we posted to the Arbitrum Governance Forums.

Grant Ships: Weekly Dev Log - #27 by UI369 - DAO Grant Programs - Arbitrum

Just to be clear, our funding to build Grant Ships came from Pluarality Labs. Plurality was awarded grants from Arbitrum with the mandate to develop a “pluarlistic” grants program, of which we were part of.

This is the link to the proposal that led to our development grant AIP - 3 Non-Constitutional - Fund the Grants Framework Proposal Milestone 1

The following is the contract we signed between UIHumanics (The LLC owned by one of our members) and the Arbitrum foundation:

GrantShips-Share-Repo/The_Arbitrum_Foundation_-_Grant_Agreement_PL_Grant_Recipients_Grant_Manager_Recipient_-_UI_Humanics_LLC.docx_-_Complete_with_DocuSign_The_Arbitrum_Foundati-2-2.pdf at main · DAOmasons/GrantShips-Share-Repo · GitHub

  1. Community Engagement (Week 1-3 concurrent)
  • Details: Engage the community and recruit initial Ship operators. This is time spent where we really push the program out and start building buzz around the upcoming grant round. Most important at this stage is surfacing people interested in being Ship operators.
    • Cost: $10,000
    • Personnel: Chris and Matt (community managers)
    • Platforms: Discord, Twitter, Telegram, Community forums
    • Projected Start Date: Week 1
    • Projected End Date: Week 3
  1. Ship Operator Voting (Week 4-5)
  • Details: This is the first opportunity for the DAO to decide on who will fill the Ships as operators. Potential Ship operators make their applications on the Grant Ships app, for the DAO to see. The applicants will then be put up for a vote. DAO members may use their ownership of $APE to distribute the proportionate amount of votes to the applicants they feel will be best at distributing funds as grants.
    • Personnel: DAO Masons’ facilitators, Ape Coin DAO
    • Platforms: JokeRace, with intention to replace with our own in TCR solution
    • Projected Start Date: Week 4
    • Projected End Date: Week 5
  1. Ship Operator Training (Week 6)
  • Details: We require about 3 days to show the operator teams how to use the App and what functions they will be required to perform.
    • Cost: $5,000
    • Personnel: DAO Masons’ trainers, Ship Operators
    • Platforms: Grant Ships dApp, Discord for calls
    • Projected Start Date: Week 6
    • Projected End Date: Week 6
  1. Game Facilitation (Week 6-20 - 15 weeks)
  • Details: We will operate as Game Facilitators and would like to train 1-2 ApeCoin members to operate as Game Facilitators, so that ApeCoin can choose to autonomously run Grant Ship rounds in the future if it chooses. It is not the intention of DAO Masons to have our involvement be a requirement to play, in fact it is our goal to create a decentralized game, able to stand on its own.
    • Should the ApeCoin DAO lack an established process for selecting representatives, we suggest implementing a DAO-wide nomination and voting system to elect Game Facilitators. Alternatively, the DAO may opt to assign individuals to these roles from their councils. These Game Facilitators are given a Hats token which grants them contract permissions.
  • Bug Fixes, Support, Quality Assurance** These activities are throughout the duration of the project.
  • Grantee Review This includes performing KYC/KYB checks,
    • Cost: $20,000
    • Personnel: DAO Masons’ trainers, selected ApeCoin members
    • Platforms: Grant Ships dApp, Discord for calls
    • Projected Start Date: Week 6
    • Projected End Date: Week 20
  1. Game Round Begins (Week 7-18 - 12 weeks)
  • Details: After Ship Operators are selected and trained, we suggest a 3 month funding round. This round would be broken down as follows:
    • Week 7: Ships marketing for the upcoming round and soliciting project applications.
    • Weeks 8-9: Grant applications, recipient selections, and initial allocations
    • Week 10-18: Project work, milestone submissions, and fund distributions
    • Week 19: DAO Vote on relative performance of Grant Ships
    • Cost: $20,000 (excluding grant allocation funds)
    • Grant Allocation: 450,000 $APE distributed during this phase (150,000 $APE per Grant Ship)
      • Note: In previous rounds Ship operators have been paid from these funds for their services. The DAO can control the amount or percentage each ship can use to pay the operators.
    • Personnel: DAO Masons’ facilitators, Ship Operators
    • Platforms: Grant Ships app, Discord for calls, Community forums
    • Projected Start Date: Week 7
    • Projected End Date: Week 18
  1. Program Evaluation (Week 19-20 - 2 weeks)
    • Details: Assess program impact and consider running a second round, using the DAO’s vote to determine relative funding levels of Ships.
    • Cost: $10,000
    • Personnel: DAO Masons’ evaluators
    • Platforms: Grant Ships app, Community forums
    • Projected Start Date: Week 19
    • Projected End Date: Week 20

Total Timeline: 20 Weeks
Start Date: Within two weeks of AIP approval.

DAO Masons High-Level Deliverables:

  • Custom App Development
  • Contract Audit (outsourced)
  • Priority front-end feature request and bug fix service
  • Game Facilitator and Operator training and onboarding
  • Ongoing support for 20-week program
    • QA
  • Game Facilitator service including:
    • Grant Ships contract configuration & deploy
    • Game configuration & launch
    • Applicant screening w/KYB, KYC, AML, etc.
    • ApeCoin-specific policy compliance
  • We are also willing to rebrand the game as Ape Ships for the DAO and can use Ape aligned branding.

REPORTING EXPECTATIONS:

We will provide a weekly DevLog (admittedly, being human we may miss one or two but will always catch up) to share progress with the community. Within the DevLogs we will report on what part of the timeline we have worked on during this period.
In addition, we will maintain near-constant communication and support via Telegram or other social media platforms. We have allocated time in our proposal to create detailed reports. We are accustomed to posting our devlogs in forums and can continue this practice or adopt another format preferred by the DAO.

OVERALL COST:

Total amount requested from the ApeCoin Ecosystem Fund = 550,000 $APE.

Item Amount Details
Grant Allocation 450,000 $APE 150,000 $APE per Grant Ship
Program Development, Training & Management 100,000 $APE Service provided by DAO Masons

:open_book: Documentation & Info

:hammer_and_wrench: Tools & Apps

:robot: Development

:speaking_head: Social & Media

:date: Planning

:books: Content

3 Likes

This was our appearance on the Green Pill Podcaast!

1 Like

Hey Grant Ships team! :wave:

Thanks for putting this back up! I’m happy to see other teams proposing alternative platforms for funding quality ideas! I’ve long been of the position that we aren’t really a “DAO” until we democratize access to capital, and unfortunately (despite my best efforts) our AIP process became slower and even more burdensome for authors this year.

I hope Grant Ships can serve as a fun additional pathway for APEs with good ideas. :slight_smile:

4 Likes

Hello, Matt here with the DAO Masons team. Thanks for the invite to continue the conversation, you guys have been great. I wanted to emphasize a few key points from the original post.

  1. Previous Thread: The previous forum post that Chris linked has a lot of great Q&A on it that is worth looking at for additional context.

  2. Primary Benefit to ApeCoin: The main benefit I see for ApeCoin DAO using Grant Ships is speed through delegation. You can use it to target multiple smaller projects without doing an AIP for each one. Grant Ships is a governance system for grants disguised as a game. So if you fund it and authorize this ruleset for handling grants, you’ll have trusted teams within your DAO distributing funds in no time - securely, transparently and with functional accountability.

  3. Beta Test: We are currently running our beta test, distributing 90,000 ARB for “Gaming in Arbitrum”. Scoping out our beta test (and potentially getting involved) would be a good way to understand what Grant Ships is offering. That 90K is available to anybody building games and game tooling on Arbitrum, so if that’s you… https://app.grantships.fun

  4. Ape Ships Test Container: We set up an “Ape Ships” instance of Grant Ships on Arb Sepolia testnet as a demo. Feel free to click around and submit whatever you want there. If you’d like Operator permissions just let me know and we’ll assign you a Hat so you can see how that part of the app works. https://ape.grantships.fun/

We’re excited about what we’ve built here because it really does solve a specific pain that we’ve felt in every DAO we’ve been in (How to give solid, quick, accountable grants?) and we’re getting good feedback and momentum from the community. It would be really awesome if this is a fit for ApeCoin and I hope we can find a win/win so you can put it to good use and have the support for ApeChain infra there when you need it.

Our proposal is here as a starting point, please share your questions/concerns and we’ll do our best to accomodate. Thank you!

2 Likes

Thanks for the comment @Amplify
I really want to emphasize that a major part of the funding in this proposal goes directly back into the community through projects that build on Ape Chain. The rest of the funding would be deployed to build a customized version of the Grant Ships dApp and in making the application as robust as possible.

2 Likes

Hi @boiler,

The community feedback period for your proposal would be ending in roughly 24 hours.

  • If you’re content with the feedback received, your next steps are to finalize your proposal using the AIP Draft Template.

  • A moderator will reach out to the author to finalize the AIP Draft. Upon receipt of the final Draft, we will review and provide instructions on the next steps.

  • Are you ready to proceed to the next phase or do you wish to extend community discussion for another 7 days?

We look forward to hearing from you.

-@Facilitators

This topic was automatically closed after 7 days. New replies are no longer allowed.

Hi @boiler,

Thank you for your ideas [and the ApeCoin DAO community for the insightful discussions].

A moderator will reach out to the author to finalize the AIP Draft using the appropriate template.

  • Once the AIP Draft is confirmed by the author and meets all DAO-approved guidelines, it will receive an AIP ID number and move forward for Draft Analysis Review.
  • @boiler please see your messages for the next steps.

Follow this Topic as further updates will be posted here in the comments. In accordance with DAO-approved guidelines, if the author does not respond within 30 days, the proposal will be automatically transferred to the Withdrawn category, and the author can re-submit the idea.

-@Facilitators

1 Like

Hi ApeCoin DAO Community,

@boiler has completed editing their AIP Idea to be their AIP Draft.

This proposal has been assigned the AIP ID Number 442.

Follow this Topic as further updates will be posted here in the comments.

Kind Regards,

-@Facilitators

We are just about wrapped up with round 1 of our beta grant round on Arbitrum, supporting the gaming domain, which ran for about a month. Funds are already in the hands of 8 out of 9 winning projects, with one being delayed for incomplete KYC. I know some people get frustrated with that sometimes, and I agree, KYC can be a thorn and antithetical to decentralization/privacy. I hope this is an issue we can all overcome as a community.

At least 2 of the funded projects are newly deployed projects on Arbitrum, so even though the amounts we were able to grant were relatively small, we were able to provide valuable impact. I think this is an accomplishment our team is particularly proud of.

I would also like to report that development on our in house TCR implementation is progressing at breakneck speed. This will enable us to have in-app token weighted, multi choice voting. Our entire team comes from the DAO Haus team so we are well experience in this realm.

With that addition, the Grant Ships App allows grant issuers a complete in-app, on-chain, grants solution. We still have to go off-app for KYC. We also ask people to make an attestation to compliance using the Ethereum Attestation Service and as part of KYC we have projects retweet something. As we add improvements to the app, we hope to automate even some of those steps as well, as much as possible.

2 Likes

Hi ApeCoin DAO Community,

Our team has reviewed and discussed @boiler’s AIP Draft and have sent a list of initial questions. We await answers.

Follow this Topic as further updates will be posted here in the comments.

Kind Regards,

-@Facilitators

1 Like

Hi ApeCoin DAO Community,

@boiler has responded to our questions and has provided consent to share them in this forum for the community.

Click here for Q&A with @boiler

1. “The DAO has the opportunity to elect individuals or teams they believe will excel in these [allocator] roles.” Please outline the proposed election process, including voting strategy, for each of the various roles.

Candidates are encouraged to self-nominate and actively campaign for their preferred roles. The election process will be facilitated through on-chain multi-choice voting, leveraging ApeCoin. To accommodate this, the creation of an additional module may be required to enable ApeCoin’s integration into the voting mechanism. The positions available for election are Facilitators and Ship Operators. Additionally, these roles may be appointed directly by the DAO’s councils if deemed more suitable for the DAO’s needs.

2. The Ape Foundation, which is responsible for custody of the DAO’s assets, does have a KYC/KYB process for the DAO’s grant recipients. Who would be responsible for conducting the KYC/KYB for the winning applicants as described in your proposal?

The duty of performing due diligence, including KYC/KYB checks, is assigned to the elected Game Facilitators. They are tasked with ensuring compliance with all ApeCoin DAO regulations. Our contracts stipulate that Ship Operators are not involved in handling grant funds; instead, a Game Facilitator is required to authorize fund transfers to grant recipients. This occurs only after verifying that all requirements have been fulfilled.

3. Your team “would like to train 1-2 ApeCoin members to operate as Game Facilitators.” How would these ApeCoin members be selected?

Should the ApeCoin DAO lack an established process for selecting representatives, we suggest implementing a DAO-wide nomination and voting system to elect Game Facilitators. Alternatively, the DAO may opt to assign individuals to these roles from their councils. These Game Facilitators are given a Hats token which grants them contract permissions.

4. How do you plan to ensure the safety (both the technical safety and resilience as it relates to local tax regimes) of the funds entrusted to a game facilitator, who would be responsible for “depositing funds into the Grant Ships contract?”

Ensuring the safety of funds within the Grant Ships contract involves several layers of security and compliance measures. Although Game Facilitators have significant influence over fund allocation, they do not physically manage the funds. The DAO employs its standard procedures to transfer funds into the contract, ensuring that once deposited, no individual can distribute funds at will.

The grant distribution process is as follows:

1. Ship Operators propose fund allocations by signaling in the app a project has been accepted for a grant.

2. Game Facilitators review and either approve or reject the project and its milestones (example, if a project is out of scope for the round, they can reject the grant at this stage).

3. Upon completion of a grant milestone, Operators signal the completion, facilitators review the milestone and upon acceptance, funds are transferred to the grantee.

These actions are governed by Hats tokens, which symbolize permissions and can be revoked if necessary. For the implementation of the AIP, we propose a direct deposit of 450,000 Ape Coin into the Grant Ships contract, which is a specialized version of the Allo Protocol contract, tailored to meet our specific requirements.

https://docs.allo.gitcoin.co/

5. “Grant Ships uses a Token Curated Registry (TCR) for most community decisions.”

a.) What are the requirements for token holders to participate? Please include details regarding the registration process, whether a wallet connection is required, minimum token ownership, which tokens are being referred to, and any other relevant details.

To participate in the Token Curated Registry (TCR) for community decisions, token holders must adhere to the following requirements:

  • Token Ownership: There is no minimum token ownership required. Token holders can participate and vote with any amount of tokens they possess.

  • Wallet Connection: Participants must connect their wallet to interact with the TCR/App.

  • Token Type: The tokens referred to in this context are ApeCoins. However, we can use any ERC20 token, including the possibility of a new token on ApeChain.

  • Snapshot Verification: Due to the absence of the ERC20votes function in the ApeCoin contract, a merkle root snapshot is used. This snapshot stores the holders’ addresses and their respective balances on-chain at a specific point in time, ensuring accurate and fair representation in votes.

This process is designed to be inclusive and accessible, allowing for broad participation from the community in decision-making.

b.) Which community decisions would not entail the use of this TCR?

The Token Curated Registry (TCR) is primarily utilized for elections and determining the impact of Grant Ships at the conclusion of a round. Decisions regarding game parameters, such as the number of Ships, the funding amount per round, and the duration of rounds, are not subject to TCR voting at present. However, integrating these aspects into the TCR voting process may be considered for future implementation.

6. Regarding “Hats Protocol,” it’s been said that “this mechanism allows the DAO itself to hold something called a ‘Top Hat’ which grants it the right to revoke or reassign all roles beneath it.”
Given that the DAO is comprised of its various token-holders, how would management of this “Top Hat” and its permissions be exercised in practice?

Game Facilitators are allocated Hats tokens, which endow them with specific contract permissions. These tokens are designed to be revocable and reassignable by the entity holding the ‘Top Hat’ token. We advocate for this ‘Top Hat’ token to be entrusted to the Special Council multisig, ensuring that permissions are not irrevocably tied to any single individual.

Should a Ship Operator or Game Facilitator deviate from their designated responsibilities, the ‘Top Hat’ bearer has the prerogative to execute transactions within the Hats contract to realign or rescind these permissions.

7. With respect to Performance-Based Funding, how do grant allocators verify that funding-related milestones are successfully completed?

Grant allocators verify the completion of funding-related milestones through a multi-step process. Initially, projects outline their intended milestones as part of the application procedure. Game Facilitators then have the responsibility to assess and approve these milestones.

Once a grant is sanctioned and the project has successfully undergone KYC and consented to our compliance policy, they are required to submit detailed reports of their milestones through the App. The Ship Operator meticulously reviews these submissions to ascertain whether the reported milestones align with the approved plan.

Subsequent to the Ship Operator’s validation, the Game Facilitator will also validate and is authorized to release the allocated funds to the project. This systematic approach ensures that only those projects that fulfill their proposed objectives receive the funding.

The following screenshots are what a milestone report looks like in the app:

Screenshot from 2024-06-11 21-44-16

8. Your Overall Cost section contains a line of 100,000 $APE for “Service Provided by DAO Masons.” Who would be the initial recipient(s) of this portion of the grant? It would be relevant to the grant agreement process if this proposal is approved.

We are a team of three working on the project with one designer as required for custom app design. Facilitators trainees will also be paid from this sum.

9. One of your stated Deliverables is “Custom ‘Ape Ships’ branded front end deploy (see ape.grantships.fun),” which contains a broken link. Does this page currently exist? If so, please provide an updated URL.

We’ve made a lot of updates since that was originally created, including the voting module. We would actually like to remove that from the AIP, as our actual app has real data from our current grant round on Arbitrum. It is more useful for demonstration purposes. We could bring it back upon request. With that said, we are also willing to rebrand the game as Ape Ships for the DAO and can use Ape aligned branding.

10. Please provide proof, and/or other relevant details, for your approved sponsorship from Arbitrum.

This is our weekly Dev Log that we posted to the Arbitrum Governance Forums.

Grant Ships: Weekly Dev Log - #27 by UI369 - DAO Grant Programs - Arbitrum

Just to be clear, our funding to build Grant Ships came from Pluarality Labs. Plurality was awarded grants from Arbitrum with the mandate to develop a “pluarlistic” grants program, of which we were part of.

This is the link to the proposal that led to our development grant AIP - 3 Non-Constitutional - Fund the Grants Framework Proposal Milestone 1

The following is the contract we signed between UIHumanics (The LLC owned by one of our members) and the Arbitrum foundation:

GrantShips-Share-Repo/The_Arbitrum_Foundation_-_Grant_Agreement_PL_Grant_Recipients_Grant_Manager_Recipient_-_UI_Humanics_LLC.docx_-_Complete_with_DocuSign_The_Arbitrum_Foundati-2-2.pdf at main · DAOmasons/GrantShips-Share-Repo · GitHub

11. Do you provide consent to apply updates to the relevant areas of your proposal based on your responses to the questions above?

Yes

12. Do you provide consent to share these questions and answers with the community in this forum?

Yes

Edits have been made to this Topic, by the author, by the author’s request, or with the author’s consent. You can click the Pencil icon at the top of the post to see these edits.

A DAR package is being worked on and upon completion this AIP will move into Administrative Review. Follow this Topic as further updates will be posted here in the comments.

Kind Regards,

-@Facilitators

Hi ApeCoin DAO Community,

We have sent a list of follow up questions to the author.

Follow this Topic as further updates will be posted here in the comments.

Kind Regards,

-@Facilitators

This sounds great, and incentivizing the build is the best way to get traction.

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