One theme that I’m paying particular attention to in 2021 is the cross-collaboration between different projects and teams within Ethereum. We’re already seeing a lot of this play out with the emergence of sub-ecosystems in DeFi such as the “ycosytem” which is a collaboration between yEarn and a bunch of other DeFi apps.
DeFi’s superpower is in its composability - that is, the ability for all different types of money legos to talk to and interact with each-other. But what if we extended this to the teams building within Ethereum? What new powers could we unlock? Well, turns out, quite a lot that wouldn’t be possible in siloed ecosystems.
I think the best example of this is the Iron Bank from Cream. What the Iron Bank allows for is protocol to protocol zero collateral lending meaning that a protocol like yEarn or Alpha Finance can borrow assets from Cream without having to overcollateralize. This is possible because Cream can trust the the yEarn protocol itself will pay back the assets that it borrows. Of course, to make this all work requires the coordination and cooperation of the yEarn, Cream and Alpha Finance teams.
We can extend this even further and take a look at some collaborations in the layer 2 space. The obvious one that comes to mind is Synthetix’s close relationship with Optimism and being the first app to launch on the Optimistic Ethereum network. Then, we can look at the Layer-2 committee that Loopring and DeversiFi have created which will act as a working group between the 2 teams (and possibly others later). There are other collaborations that I could list here but I think you get the point!
I like to think of Ethereum as a game with a very deep skill tree. As we progress through the game, we unlock different and more advanced skills but only after unlocking the prerequisite skills. I would consider the “cross-collaboration” skill something that the ecosystem has unlocked recently but it had a bunch of per-requisite skills that needed to be unlocked first - namely, we needed to unlock a critical mass of builders, apps that people actually wanted to use, launch the relevant DeFi money legos (stablecoins, money markets, exchanges etc) and DeFi in general needed to go from being viewed as a fad to something serious.
There are still many skills left for the Ethereum ecosystem to unlock and I think that many of them will require this deep cross-collaboration between projects. I don’t believe that each project becoming a walled garden or siloed off from each other project will work at all and I’m glad that even though Ethereum is now as big as a major corporation, it doesn’t feel like one.
Have a great day everyone,
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All information presented above is for educational purposes only and should not be taken as investment advice.