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Lightning Advancements with Lyle Pratt, Founder of VIDA

Thanks to Stakwork for transcribing our Twitter Spaces.

Lyle Pratt – 00:00:06:

That we don’t even own anymore if it wasn’t free. So the fundamental problem is that access to our time and attention costs nothing as long as you know our address or our phone number, email address. And that’s a problem. There’s no market disincentives to contacting you or stealing your attention. And so the fundamental thing that Vida is trying to do is to create market disincentives to create a price signal for our time and attention and starting out, this is a consumer product where you yourself can set a market rate for your time and attention. But ultimately, as I said, I think that all network traffic will be settled in real time with Lightning and ultimately that will greatly alleviate any spam problems that we see across variety of networks.

Voltage – 00:01:09:

Awesome, thanks for the kind of the framework on how we’re going to approach Vida in terms of what your platform does now, what it’s going to do in the future. We’re on Twitter right now. We see a lot of issues with Twitter, but with your broad background and your experience, what is the biggest consumer problem that you believe Lightning can solve as far as cleaning that up since there’s such a diverse amount of spam?

Lyle Pratt – 00:01:38:

Well, I think that because Lightning exists now and because you can settle traffic in real time, it opens up a lot of new possibilities that haven’t existed before. Vida is launching with a few specific features in mind. There’s paid audio, video calls so you set your rate and somebody could pay to call you on an audio call or video call. There’s paid messages so people can pay your rate to send you a message. But there’s also live streaming so people can pay your rate in real time to watch a live stream that you’re hosting. So I sort of think of them as basic building blocks for what is possible. It’s new tools for individuals, developers and enterprises that allow us to monetize human time and attention in new ways. But there’s a lot of additional opportunities in the future that deal with sort of fundamentally approaching the same problem, which is giving people new ways to monetize their time and attention. So one thing might be using the Lightning Network to do paid real time overlays on streams. Like you could think of them as ads on live streams. There’s also ways to use the same technology that Vida is built on to settle global wholesale telecom traffic. So we’re starting sort of with some basic building blocks and trying to get the consumer flywheel turning, trying to get folks like yourself on the Vida network pricing their time and valuing their time. And I think it’s a core part of sort of what the value for value movement is among bitcoiners, which is if I’m giving you value, you should voluntarily give me value in return. And if we don’t value each other’s time, if we as bitcoiners  don’t value each other’s time, how do we value each other sort of at a fundamental level. And so I think it’s just the beginning and we’re going to see how things evolve. But it’s pretty exciting, at least to me.

Nate – 00:04:07:

It’s important for everyone to know that this works. Right now it is an alpha, but you can download the app, connect it to the desktop or the web and off you go. Right?

Lyle Pratt – 00:04:22:

Yeah. I have been in sort of roles for the past. I’m just going to backtrack a little bit, but I’ve been in roles for the past five years or so where I haven’t actually gotten to write much code. So whenever I left and sort of dove into building Vida, I’ve kind of been running at 12,000 miles an hour and staring at my computer for 12 hours a day. But all that has been successful. And then I’ve got a basic version of the product out and like you say, Nate, folks can sign up and use it. Today there’s an iOS app and Android app and a web app that it needs a lot of polish and it needs a lot of UX help. But you can see the vision and you can understand the vision and you can see where things are going. And I guess I hope that people try it out and give me feedback so that I can know where to invest time. I’m looking forward to seeing how people use it and rolling with the punches and going where the energy is there to iterate on the product. And I guess I should say behind the scenes I’m using a Voltage Lightning node. You guys really helped me hit the easy button. I don’t have a ton of experience building Lightning apps or managing a Lightning node myself, but getting up and running, I don’t know how it could have been easier, especially you, Nate, who guided me through getting my Liquidity set up properly and getting my inbound route set up. It pretty much took like an afternoon and I was ready to go and I didn’t have to think about it again.

Nate – 00:06:16:

That’s awesome. I remember that meeting and I wasn’t exactly sure what you were building, even though you told me. But seeing it now makes me really excited and I think we’re going to do a Q and A here a little bit later. But I just have to ask. So you’re talking about streaming and advertisements and I got to ask, this got my brain thinking a little bit. Could, in theory, folks that are sort of live streaming on Twitch, using an OBS broadcaster or something, use some sort of Vida widget that basically pulls people that want to advertise, right? Yeah. So people that want to advertise will go to your Vida page and book an hour time slot and put in an image or something. Obviously you have to approve the image they pay Seth and then that goes onto a widget on OBS or something. That sounds amazing.

Lyle Pratt – 00:07:10:

Yeah, well, hey man, I’m glad your mind jumped right over there to that because it’s something I’ve been working on, Vida, like I said, I’m trying to create tools for lots of different types of folks and clearly streamers is a really big market and a big opportunity to provide monetization tools too, because as of today, it’s kind of stuck, right? You have sort of advertisers and sponsors and depending on the platform like Twitch or YouTube, you have these little tips or gifts. But those platforms take a lot of that money and the innovation there is kind of stagnated. So I don’t know if anyone is familiar with platforms like Restream, which is sort of a platform that will consume a stream from OBS like you say, and then rebroadcast it to multiple platforms. Well, behind the scenes, Vida can do that out of the box. I haven’t exposed it to users, but it actually does that today. I can configure a stream, like if you’re streaming to Vida, I can configure Vida to reforward that over to Twitch as an example or bitcoin TV, right? And so once Vida is in the middle of your stream, then I can programmatically do a lot of cool stuff with your stream. Like I can display advertisements on top of it. I can display overlays that show sort of how many paid viewers are watching or how many people have submitted paid comments, pretty much anything. And so one of the things that I’m working on is essentially doing exactly like you say, giving people an API to programmatically allow overlays to be placed on top of their streams while people are watching it on Twitch or any other platform, but more importantly, provide tools for people to pay to display these things on top of your streams. And clearly there has to be some sort of approval process, but it could also be fun. You can involve your audience while they’re watching you and say, hey, if you want to post something on my stream, go here and click this button and scan this invoice with Strike and you’re good to go. So it’s a little bit fuzzy, exactly how it will work, but the underlying tech is there and it’s something I’m spending time working on and thinking about, I think.

Nate – 00:09:46:

I don’t know how many bitcoiners or whatever like go to Twitch often or anything, but I’m kind of a gamer and I think I’ll always be. And there are some times I go to Twitter to see what people are playing and stuff and I think I’ve never seen anything like that before. So I really do think that would be an innovative development and I think the incentive for big name streamers to once they learn about it or get exposed to that, I think the light bulb will go off pretty quick, honestly.

Lyle Pratt – 00:10:14:

Yeah, absolutely. And there’s opportunities for me to do things like stream forwarding for free, whereas other applications, other services charge a significant sum for it. And the reason why I can do that is because Vida is enabling new monetization tools and that’s a whole part of the vision. So hey man, I didn’t know you were a gamer, but I would love to talk to you more about this to get your perspective.

Nate – 00:10:48:

Yeah, for sure. I talked to the guy that’s Ebony a lot also about what they’re building. I really like the whole Lightning gaming thing. It’s really cool to me. Bobby, if you don’t mind, I want to jump in for another little comment here. When you log into the desktop, it shows you some pretty big names right on the front. Does this mean that these people signed up? You got Jack Dorsey and all these guys?

Lyle Pratt – 00:11:16:

Yeah.

Nate – 00:11:17:

Wow.

Lyle Pratt – 00:11:18:

Yeah they did. They logged in with their Twitter account and signed up. Jack lost his rate at the default rate, which is 2002 thousand and message. But last week I was sort of scrolling through new accounts that had signed up and I saw username Jack and I sort of did a double take and I thought to myself, wait, I only allow Twitter logins so far. So this is actually Jack. I kind of geeked out a little bit and then posted about it on Twitter because who wouldn’t? But yeah, he signed in. I sent him a message on Vida. He actually responded to me. So pretty amazing.

Nate – 00:12:02:

That’s awesome.

Lyle Pratt – 00:12:04:

Yeah. Like I said, there’s been quite a few folks that have signed up. Some of them are my friends. Jimmy Song and Robert Breedlove are our buddies. I’m a co author of thank God for Bitcoin. I don’t know if many people know that, but I worked closely with those guys as well as the other thank God for Bitcoin authors. I guess it’s been a couple of years ago now, really. Some have signed up at my prompting, but most of them just signed up. So hey man, I’m really thankful if any of you guys are listening or if you hear this in the future. Thank you so much for testing out my product.

Voltage – 00:12:45:

Yeah, quick question. So I’ve been enjoying it, playing with it and you’ve been wildly responsive to taking feedback and improving the platform. One question I had was I did message both Jack smaller and Jack and the thing I saw was they didn’t respond. What type of things can be put in place where someone is popular? They’re getting a thousand messages a day. Is it really on them to just continue to increase their rate? Or is there kind of like maybe stats are in limbo until the message is actually responded to?

Lyle Pratt – 00:13:24:

How could that be? Honestly, this is sort of a product UX thing I’m working through. I’ve thought a lot about sort of holding the sats until a response was made, but that’s pretty problematic for a number of reasons. One is that you can connect your own Lightning node to a Vida account or you can connect your own Strike account to a Vida account as another example. And the point of that is to get Vida out of the flow of funds so that Vida doesn’t have to custody user funds or sit in the middle of these transactions. So clearly if you have some sort of mechanism where you’re holding sats or refunding them if a response never happens, you’re getting into sort of technical issues because you don’t even have those funds if someone has connected a note to their account. The other thing is sort of at a broader picture is yes, it’s sort of my belief at this point in life that you shouldn’t be able to basically distract someone or notify them of anything, make their phone ring, make their phone buzz unless someone has paid for it. So with that sort of in mind, you can sort of think of a message as a little bit of a gamble, but a phone call or a video call where you only pay if the answer is a sure thing. So the route that I’m taking currently is that I’m going to publicly show the response rate or the response ratio on profiles so that you can kind of see that okay, this person only responds to two out of every ten messages that they receive or something like that. So that you as a user who’s choosing to sort of spend money to contact this person can sort of make an educated decision about that when messaging. Another thing is that the US of how notifications work if you are a user is not the best. Right? Like there’s probably holes in some I don’t know, is Mueller’s getting every one of the notifications? Does he have the mobile app installed or is he just getting email and checking them at night? I’m not really sure, honestly. So like I say, this is gonna be a core problem from a product and UX perspective that I spend a lot of time on. I’m already pulling in help in that area. So we’ll see how things evolve and roll with the punches and go from there.

Voltage – 00:16:08:

Yeah, I think it’s great to start, I actually had a call with Christopher CALICOTT who’s in the audience listening and the call sounded just as clear as my mobile phone, which was just really cool to kind of experience. The chat obviously is a little harder to miss, but it is a little harder to miss. But I really do enjoy the idea of what Nate is bringing up in terms of gaming because when I think about gaming companies. Like. I’ve been an avid gamer and I have a massive gaming collection and have since I was just like a child and the one thing I love with gaming is the community standpoint and the fact that kids can earn nowadays is wonderful. But the thing that kind of sucks in my eyes is games used to be 50 $60. Now you have to download the game for free or pay 50 $60 and then there’s hundreds of dollars in upgrades. And my math might be off, but I’ve seen how certain games you might spend upwards of $500 to $1,000 across the lifetime of owning one with all these additions and just simply being able to earn in game, earn from users, make tips and allow your personality to shine, that’s pretty cool. And I don’t know how far out that is for Lightning, just being broadly accepted under Zebedee’s working on it, but can you kind of speak more to that? Like how you’re viewing that? Maybe if you are viewing it differently than some of the other folks that are in the space trying to achieve that right now.

Lyle Pratt – 00:17:31:

Yeah, I mean, the way I look at it is that Lightning payments, especially now that we have Cash App, can scan a Lightning payment. Strike exists. Robinhood will let you scan a Lightning payment. We have to assume that PayPal is going to essentially be forced in providing the same functionality. They say they’re going to allow bitcoin withdrawals soon and so they’re going to kind of be forced into offering this functionality as well. But if you haven’t experienced how easy it is to open up your wallet, whether that’s a service like Cash App or just a native Lightning wallet and scanning something and paying for something, I mean, it’s a ridiculously simple and easy experience. And just the fact that that friction has been reduced by probably 80%, you’re going to get application developers and game developers integrated technology because the user friction is so much less than user experience is so much more. And there’s a lot of incentive from developers, application developers or game developers to integrate this tech because like you say, people are in this new world, people need new ways to monetize their time and their applications. So I sort of look at it from a big picture view. It seems inevitable to me that the wave of Lightning adoption is going to continue to build. And Zebedee and Vida and fountain and Stacker News, we’re still extremely early, but adoption is coming and I’m here for that and I’m building for that. Awesome.

Voltage – 00:19:38:

What role do you think Vida can play potentially in terms of just getting more people using a wallet or a custodian? I know you said you don’t want to be the kind of intermediary who’s custodying funds and such, but are there creative ways where if just an average user who’s not on Twitter and in our niche community wanted to use this? Do you have any creative approaches which you feel could be a tool to kind of accelerate adoption and just people interacting with bitcoin?

Lyle Pratt – 00:20:09:

Yeah, absolutely. I think Vida has a chance to be one of the killer apps of the Lightning Network. Clearly I’m going to say that because I’m building it, but I really do think that that is the truth. I guess to back up a little bit, startups are about attacking big problems. Like if you’re building a start up in a niche problem or a niche industry, you’re going to have problems. You need to be attacking really massive industries and massive opportunities. And I mean, that’s what Vida is doing. So I do fundamentally believe that Vida is going to onboard users onto the Lightning Network that wouldn’t have otherwise become a Lightning Network user, at least in this state of the world. Let’s think about, I don’t know, one of the NFL players that have recently begun taking their contracts in Bitcoin. They should have a Vida profile so that they can interact with their fans. They should set a rate to receive a message or receive a call. Maybe that rate is really high, maybe it’s $1,000 an hour for a call, but fans will spend the money to talk to them for five minutes. So what types of people will that onboard into the Lightning Network? Well, all sorts of people, like everyday people that just want to talk to their favorite NFL pro. And there’s lots of examples of other types of people like that. Right now, Vida’s, the folks that have signed up for Vida are pretty niche in the Bitcoin space. But there’s no reason for that to persist because 100 million people in the United States have Cash App and can scan a Lightning invoice now. So I think Lightning adoption is going to sort of fundamentally be a story about applications and networks that people want to interact with. And there’s lots of new applications and networks that can only exist now that Lightning exists. We keep building the products that people want and people will use Lightning to use those products.

Voltage – 00:22:39:

Yeah, just from a marketing perspective, because I’m a marketing guy. What’s really fascinating about this is there’s a culture of putting your Cash App name in your Twitter profile or on your Instagram. Like you see people do this on the internet for whatever reason, whether it be earning tips or just asking for a handout. But the other thing is, on TikTok, there’s this subculture of how to make money in this many days. Like everyone wants to know how to have three jobs and have these side hustles. And what’s really fascinating to me is everyone is an influencer nowadays. Everyone has their own personal brand and the fact that everyone has Cash App in their pocket and your application can just communicate with it so easily. There’s a massively untapped market of just people being able to monetize themselves. And I’m just curious, I know you have a lot of work to do through alpha and beta testing, but have you given any thought to that or am I just kind of jumping ahead from where you’re really focused right now?

Lyle Pratt – 00:23:42:

No, I mean, I think that you’re describing an optimal Vida customer, which is all of these people all over the world that fit the description that you just gave. And I think something that’s important about Vida and the Lightning Network is that Vida can approach and access those customers worldwide today. Right? If Vida were built on fiat rails, that would be impossible. But today, some kid who’s a Photoshop expert can receive phone calls on Vida and do screen shares on Vida and show people how to use Photoshop. I mean, take that example and stamp it out a thousand times for a thousand different use cases, and it still applies. The barriers to monetizing your time on the internet are being reduced. That’s a fundamental goal of Vida and Lightning is facilitating that eventuality. It wouldn’t be possible at the same scale without technology like Lightning and like voltage, for that matter.

Voltage – 00:25:00:

That’s really cool. And again, from a marketing standpoint, I just think about everyone has Cash App. If you’re a content creator and you want to monetize and not have to do it through, let’s say, PayPal or whatever transaction module you’re using, you could, on your landing page, say, hey, if you want to contact me, download Vida Pay with your Cash App with Bitcoin, and I’ll immediately join you. And people could really build a very creative funnel. I’m almost tempted to try it myself and just to, like, give some knowledge to people who need it, but I just see this as being incredible. And another question for you. If you’re working to build this in a noncustodial way, tell us a little bit about how this aligns with just kind of sovereignty and autonomy. Dig more into how you’re not the custodian and just how this long term can just really empower individuals, where it just reduces middlemen and just a lot of this red tape and bureaucracy we see in just monetization models right now.

Lyle Pratt – 00:26:00:

Yeah, well, by default, if you just land on a Vida page, let’s say, to watch a stream, and you log in with Twitter for the first time and you fund your account, you scan the QR code with Cash App, Vida is going to be a custodian in that situation. However, the important thing is that Vida gives you options. Like Vida lets you connect your account to Strike. Vida lets you connect your account to your own node via an L and Bits connection. Something I’m working on is a Vida account connecting to your swan Bitcoin account. So I think the important thing is giving your users options to not use you as a custodian and encouraging them to do so, encouraging them to use their own node or connect Vida account to a custodian that they’ve already given their information to. One of the big problems is that in order to use this service, I have to sign up and give them all my information. In order to use that service, I have to sign up and give them all my information. In order to use this one over there, I got to sign up and give them all my information. That creates problems and it expands the surface area that somebody can attack and steal your identity or your info. So allowing users to sort of choose how they want a service to interact with their Lightning wallet, whether that’s a custodian wallet or a self hosted node that they operate themselves, I think it’s really important. I guess another thing I think is important is giving people tools to monetize their activity, whether that’s a phone call or a message or a live stream on their own domain, on their own platform. So like with Vida, I don’t care if someone is watching a Vida stream from the Vida live website or if they’re watching a Vida stream from your own personal domain. I don’t care because my incentives and Vida’s incentives are to increase network usage, right? So it opens up a lot of potential and possibilities where Vida can offer embeddable widgets that you can just paste on your own website to facilitate live streaming. That still works in exactly the same way it would in Vida, where people have to scan an invoice and pay to watch your stream or pay to chat with you or whatever. But it doesn’t have to be on the Vida Live website because Vida I’m trying to build a network that anyone can interface with or interoperate with, and that includes allowing other people to build applications on top of Vida. The Vida Android and iOS app will not be the only applications that exist that can interface with the Vida network. I’m kind of going down rabbit hole here, but I hope you’ll forgive me. Vida under the hood is built on the same open standards that global telecom networks are built on. And I guess to sort of put it simply, what that means is anyone today can build an app on Vida. Maybe you build an app that is better for a particular streaming niche or has some particular functionality that the official View client doesn’t have. Well, you can build it and offer it to users. And something that I’ve been spending a lot of time on is the Vida Citadel program, which basically is a program to try to incentivize network growth. And the way it works is any fees that Vida collects from usage of the network we basically just give back to the users. And the way it works today is if you’re the first person that I contact. So let’s imagine I sign up to watch your stream and you’re the first person that I pay to watch on Vida. Well, you’re going to get a portion of any network fees that I generate, whether that’s receiving or sending in the future. So it’s sort of an affiliate or referral program that’s built directly into the network in order to increase network growth as much as possible because we want this value for value economy to grow as much as possible. I guess I’ll pause there since I’ve been running my mouth.

Nate – 00:30:38:

That’s awesome. I actually have a question from the audience. How do I find creators on the platform? Is the idea that I’d find them on like through Twitter? I did not see a search on the site.

Lyle Pratt – 00:30:53:

Yeah so the search currently only shows if you’re logged in. So log in with Twitter and you can see the search at the top of the header. More generally, honestly Discoverability is extremely lacking right now. The Discoverability features to sort of let you find folks to talk to just yesterday or maybe the day before yesterday, they’re all running together now. I added a bunch of top profiles sorted by Twitter followers on the homepage so you can see some of the folks that have signed up. But yeah, Alpha Software needs a lot of work in the area of profile discovery. Currently if you have a Vida account you need to shield it to your audience so that they will contact you on it. I guess with one final sort of note about that is there is a Twitter DM bot where if you enable it. Anyone that tries to DM you will see sort of a welcome message that says basically hey. I don’t often respond to DMs from folks that I don’t already follow but if you want to get my attention then you can click here and message me here for a small fee. So there’s going to be a lot of new things added over the coming weeks that facilitate discovery and sort of facilitate getting the word out that your Vida profile exists and all those are sort of in the works.

Nate – 00:32:28:

Yeah, I mean we can go on and on about all the cool ideas I think we can add to it. I was just thinking about oh it’d be cool to have like little sub communities how you pick like your little tags.

Lyle Pratt – 00:32:40:

Absolutely.

Nate – 00:32:41:

Like really fun stuff like that.

Lyle Pratt – 00:32:43:

Yeah, I mean speaking about the topics so when you make a Vida profile you have an opportunity to put in topics that you think people will want to talk to you about. And I think that this is actually a really important part of the Vida network because when you’re building a network endpoint discovery is really important. You need to be able to find endpoints on the network that you are interested in interfacing with. In this case people you’re interested in talking to or contacting. And the topics are an important part of that because basically the way it works is as you communicate with people on Vida or as they communicate with you on Vida you’re accruing points in the topics that you have on your profile. So some portion of those points is accrued actually when the interaction happens but then most of them are accrued sort of a day later. Is currently how it works. The next time they log in they’re going to see a little notice that say, you recently spent some sats interacting with Bobby. What did you guys talk about? And you can pick one of the topics and basically what happens is the stats that were spent in that interaction with you get allocated to you on that topic in the form of points. So the topic scoring system is essentially sat under the hood. What does that mean? It means that as people use Vida, Vida is sort of building out this index of expertise and experience across a wide variety of topics. But as you say, Nate, there’s a lot that can be done with those topics as well. Like a lot of sort of more public social features that can be built on top of those topics. Like for example, if we were live streaming those spaces right now and you went to the Bitcoin topic, you would see it at the top of the page. That’s something that’s coming soon. Public sort of questions that you might ask an influencer, those will show up under topics. So that rabbit hole goes very deep and I’m excited about some of those features that are coming down the pipes there.

Nate – 00:35:02:

Yeah, that might be cool too if there was like a question board where it’s like I’ll pay 2000 to anyone that can answer this question or something like that maybe.

Lyle Pratt – 00:35:12:

Absolutely.

Nate – 00:35:15:

Cool. Do you want to open it up? Anybody? If you want have any questions, raise your hand and then we’ll bring you up. Time is going by fast, man. We’re going to have to catch up in Austin here.

Lyle Pratt – 00:35:28:

Heck yeah, for sure. I’m ready. Austin is the place to be. If you’re a Bitcoinner, that’s pretty much what’s happening.

Nate – 00:35:37:

Yeah. But Bobby, I know your mind is blown right now.

Voltage – 00:35:46:

Yeah, I’m just thinking about the awareness that simply needs to be created because anyone can use it currently. It’s just helping them understand and I’m just thinking about making a video, kind of expressing it. I’m trying to get better at TikTok not only for like voltage and making awareness around Lightning, but even like personally just learning these like new social channels and playing with new products and I just think this is something literally everyone can use. And I know you’re making leaps and bounds weekly, improving the dashboard, but I can just definitely see this as an empowering tool for anyone and everyone and I’m just excited for people outside of Bitcoin to use it and to execute a phone call and get paid. That’s got to be exciting for someone who’s not used to playing with Bitcoin apps and services and stuff.

Nate – 00:36:34:

Well, that’s the thing, right? You don’t even have to tell people it’s Bitcoin, you just tell them you strike and it’s just like.

Voltage – 00:36:44:

Yeah, that’s true. I think I made $2.0.47 so I’m on the come up. Guys like look out.

Nate – 00:36:51:

I like how it shows you, like, who the top earner is. Like, right now, it says Jack is the fourth top earner. Like Jack Dorsey on Vida. I wonder who the first is.

Lyle Pratt – 00:37:00:

Yes, it’s probably me from all the testing I’ve done.

Voltage – 00:37:04:

You’ll be number one.

Lyle Pratt – 00:37:05:

I need to demote myself there on the leaderboard. Listen, sign ups were turned live a month ago today, actually. I was, like, scrambling to get the sort of initial version of the product out before bitcoin 2022 so that I can talk about it to folks while I was there. So it’s only been a month. There’s been a lot that has changed and improved over the month. There’s going to continue to be a lot of stuff that gets added month over month. Currently, it’s just me, but I’m bringing other folks on the team, really good folks that know how to build products like this and know how to scale organizations that build products like this. Anytime you see Vida crosses your attention span, check in and see what’s new. I really do think that Vida can help facilitate the growth of bitcoin and Lightning in general. People need real applications that provide real utility to their lives. And sort of the net that Vida casts over the market is very wide ranging, and I need folks like you guys to kind of be champions. And hopefully the Vida Citadel program sort of helps incentivize folks to do that and be champions of the network. Absolutely.

Nate – 00:38:54:

Yeah, that sounds really cool.

Voltage – 00:38:56:

So I guess one last call. Are there any questions? If anyone wants to jump up and ask, feel free. If no one raises their hand in the next couple of minutes, we could talk also a little bit just about Lightning as a whole island, like, maybe outside of your product a little bit. What’s your view on just everything going on with Taro and just different things? Where is your kind of had been focused? What’s catching your attention with everything in Lightning right now beyond the product?

Lyle Pratt – 00:39:25:

Yeah, I don’t know. I guess perhaps this is an opportunity for me to sort of back up a little bit on what caused me to start thinking about in the first place. So in 2018, when the initial versions of the Lightning Network were being released and becoming real, I happened to be working on a project inside of my previous employer’s network to cut fraud and spam. They were having a lot of fraud and spam problems. If you don’t know much about telecom, basically, if somebody gets access to your network, they can run up millions of dollars in fraud costs in a matter of hours. It’s a really difficult problem to solve. In fact, it’s such a difficult problem, there’s like a $40 billion dollar a year kind of problem and telecom fraud globally. So at the time, I was building some machine learning tools to identify this fraud in the network and spam in the network very quickly so that we could turn it off. And at the same time, I’m like absorbing Lightning podcasts and anything I can about Lightning. And it was just sort of obvious that if we could settle the value of the traffic in real time, that a lot of this would go away. Not all of it would go away, but a lot of it, a lot of the fraud and spam would simply disappear because the incentives are better aligned for the participants in the network. And I think over time, all telecom traffic will be settled in real time over Lightning. I mean, that’s probably I don’t know, might sound like a ridiculous thing to say, but I think it’s the truth. And the reason is because there’s not technology that exists that can do with that. They can do that at the scale that global telecom markets and networks operate at. You can’t settle global telecom on salana. Salana is supposed to be fast or whatever, but it would crumble in the face of traffic volumes like we’re talking about here. So if you just sort of think about that single use case of global telecom, right, and the traffic being settled over the Lightning Network, you realize that massive amounts of liquidity are going to have to flow into the Lightning network to facilitate that. So we’re just at the very beginning. But it’s absolutely true to say that Lightning enables use cases that never existed before, possibilities that never existed before. You guys have probably heard of Http 402, which is the Http code that is per payment required. The same code exists for Sip 402 payment required. When these networks were originally getting built, everybody thought we would have real time digital payments on the Internet, but we didn’t until just a couple of years ago. Just a few years ago. And it’s going to change the world. So I guess to say that, to put it mildly, I’m very bullish on Bitcoin and the Lightning Network in general because it solves problems that can’t be solved in the other way.

Voltage – 00:43:24:

Mike Drop. I just shared a tweet from Michael Levin, I had to find it from almost a year ago, but he dives into detail about the 402 component you just mentioned, which I’d frankly never heard of. And that blew my mind. And the fact that that’s there kind of waiting. It sounds like Lightning could directly solve that problem and still in that void. Could you maybe dig into the detail of that a little bit for those who are not familiar?

Lyle Pratt – 00:43:51:

Yeah, I mean, when the Http spec and when the spec zip is just a protocol, kind of like Http, but for voice over IP or video over IP communication. So when those specs were created, everyone sort of thought there would be an easy way to do it. But there wasn’t until Bitcoin was invented. And then until Lightning Network wasn’t invented, it didn’t become feasible until then. So Michael is absolutely right. The opportunities are massive, and developers like me and like the folks at Amboss, like the folks at Voltage and Stacker News and Fountain, I mean, people are just beginning to take advantage of these technical capabilities and just to sort of address what he’s saying. And actually, I’m thinking of a tweet that Michael also posted earlier today, which was sort of about the liquidity requirements that are going to be required in the Lightning Network and the interest rate that you can earn today by providing liquidity in the Lightning Network, like the fact that interest rates for channel capacity are so high today. What does that tell you about the market? It tells you that there is a lot more demand for liquidity and channel capacity that exists today. So much demand that I think, according to his tweet that I saw earlier, it’s like 20% Apr now. There’s a bunch of caveats around that. But my point is that the Lightning network is growing quickly. It’s not going to slow down. Massive amounts of bitcoin are going to have to move into the Lightning Network to facilitate the transactions that are going to occur from all of these new use cases that are being unlocked in http 402 and applications being built around that are sort of the tip of the iceberg.

Voltage – 00:46:01:

Pretty incredible stuff, man. This is a great way to end the day. It gets me really excited because we get to see a little perspective beyond what you’re doing now, what can come in the future, insights into what’s going on with Telecom, and it’s exciting stuff, man. We really appreciate you taking time and just chatting with us and taking a little bit today.

Lyle Pratt – 00:46:21:

Yeah, no problem. I’ve enjoyed it. I look forward to doing more of these and appreciate the opportunity. Thanks for inviting me on. Like I say to everybody here in the audience, voltage has been great. Highly recommend their service. They make it easy even for dummies like me and check them out, especially their flow product for inbound liquidity. Like, if you run a Lightning node at home and you need inbound liquidity, you can get it in like, 2 seconds using their product just to piggyback.

Nate – 00:46:56:

Onto that real quick. Mike Levin from Lightning Labs also tweeted that the bid side of Lightning pool is kind of going crazy lately. So if you run a routing node that’s on LND, consider selling some liquidity, it’s really not too hard to do, and the network needs it right now.

Lyle Pratt – 00:47:18:

Absolutely.

Nate – 00:47:21:

But yes. Thank you for your time and telling us all about what you’ve been building for a while now. It’s really great to see it.

Lyle Pratt – 00:47:31:

Yeah, I’ve enjoyed it. I’m probably going to drop off here. It’s my brother in law’s birthday, and I need to head over there and wish him a happy birthday.

Voltage – 00:47:44:

All right, man. Have a wonderful evening. And everyone here, we’re going to be doing these as often as we can. On Wednesdays, we’re lining up some guests like Stephan Libertas. Coming up, Max and Stacey. Jeff Booth working on getting Samson Mao and a lot of other guests. So if there’s anyone you would love to just kind of have us talk with and dig deep, feel free to DM us. Otherwise, Stay Tuned. We’ll be doing this on Wednesdays and everyone have a lovely

Lyle Pratt – 00:48:18:

you.

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