Nutbox × Moonbeam AMA (2021-09-22) Compilation


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Could you please introduce Moonbeam and the core team of Moonbeam briefly?

Moonbeam is basically an Ethereum-compatible, smart contract platform targeted towards Ethereum developers. It is also a parachain on Polkadot, which means it benefits from the shared security and interoperability that the Polkadot network provides.

Our aim is to provide the easiest development environment and the richest set of developer integrations on Polkadot. By making it easy for developers to build on Moonbeam, we are able to attract and onboard new and existing applications to the Polkadot ecosystem very quickly.

The Moonbeam project started with the goal to directly tackle cross-chain interoperability challenges by providing a simpler way to deploy apps to Polkadot, using a smart contract and Ethereum compatibility approach.

PureStake is the company that is running the core development of Moonbeam, led by CEO Derek Yoo. Derek and the team have extensive experience building technology companies in the web2 space and have leveraged this to excel at providing secure, reliable services to our customers.

We’re all brought together by our vision to make Moonbeam the best platform for developers and projects to build on Polkadot.

To learn more about the team, please visit:


As the earliest batch of projects built on Polkadot, why did Moonbeam choose Polkadot in the first place?

The most important reason we are building on Polkadot is the developer activity we see there. Outside of Ethereum, Polkadot is the most active ecosystem in terms of developers. Given that we are building a developer-oriented platform, we need to go to where the developers and builders are, and Polkadot offers more of a greenfield opportunity vs Ethereum, where there is a more mature and established ecosystem.

The Substrate and Polkadot technology stack was another important factor. Substrate is a Rust-based blockchain development framework that helped us build Moonbeam much faster than if we had built it from scratch. We were drawn to Polkadot based on its vision of cross chain integration.

We believe the design of Polkadot will lend itself to new kinds of natively cross chain applications in the future which we found very exciting and it was aligned with our vision of how blockchain would evolve.


What are the advantages of Moonbeam over other similar projects?

Moonbeam is designed to simplify the experience for Ethereum developers as they expand to Polkadot. Because Polkadot and Kusama use a different tech stack, and most developers are used to using Ethereum tools, integrations and frameworks - it is very easy for ethereum or evm compatible projects to leverage the existing code they have on Ethereum or other EVM compatible chains to have a Moonbeam deployment. By doing so they also get access to the Polkadot and Kusama ecosystems which offers a completely new set of users and assets for projects, along with the native cross-chain integrations that come with it.

To summarize, these points are some of the advantages:

  1. Minimal Codebase Changes: if you have an existing contract, it will work right away with no need to rewrite or reconfigure

  2. Tech stack Support: write smart contracts in Solidity or anything that compiles to EVM bytecode

  3. Developers can use existing tools and frameworks: connect popular tools like MetaMask, Remix, Hardhat, Waffle, Mars and Truffle via a complete set of Web3 RPC endpoints. They can also use well known Javascript libraries such as Web3.Js or Ethers.Js.

  4. Core Developer Integrations and overall ecosystem: integrations with the most-requested developer tools and services like APIs (The Graph, Biconomy, Covalent, OnFinality), assets (Ocean Protocol), bridges (ChainSafe, Interlay, and an NFT bridge in the works), DeFi protocols (SushiSwap, IDEX, CREAM Finance), oracles (Chainlink, Band Protocol) and many more. The ecosystem we have built is an essential component of what differentiates us from other projects. Teams that build on Moonbeam directly have access to everything they need to successfully grow their project on Polkadot and Kusama.

  5. Unified Accounts, Addresses, and Signatures: use your existing Ethereum H160 accounts & ECDSA signatures to interact with Moonbeam. This is also an important change we did in comparison to other teams on Polkadot and Kusama. We changed the underlying account and signature structure from Substrate to Ethereum so that it would create less friction for users on Moonbeam and Moonriver. Now users can simply change the network on Metamask and use is seamlessly as the would do on Ethereum. We thought that if users had to manage 2 sets of accounts and keys it would have been a less pleasant experience.


Moonriver has recently completed the deployment process and successfully launched Kusama. What is the relationship between Moonbeam and Moonriver?

Yes this is a question we receive often. Basically Moonriver is an Ethereum compatible smart contract parachain on Kusama - Moonbeam is the same as Moonriver but it's a parachain on Polkadot as opposed to Kusama. They each have the same codebase, although they are separate networks.

The relationship between Moonriver and Moonbeam will be similar to that of Kusama and Polkadot. Moonriver will serve as a place for projects to deploy their code first, under real economic conditions, before deploying on Moonbeam.

I think what Parity found was that unless there was real value at stake, you can't really test new features effectively. Users don't really care about new deployments and won't react the same way unless there is real value on the line (Governance is a good example of this). So that was the original purpose of Kusama, and now it has taken a life of its own. The Moonbeam Foundation is adopting this philosophy with Moonriver/Moonbeam.

Ultimately we will see the ecosystems on Moonriver and Moonbeam evolve in different ways. So far we have seen a growing interest for NFTs on Moonriver, however time will tell what shape they take.


The concept of NFT is very trendy recently, we have seen that Moonbeam is very concerned with NFT, will there be any NFT explorations in the future?

I think that our objective is to create the best possible platform for developers to build on, and that includes NFT projects.

So far we have seen significant traction on Moonriver within the NFT space with projects like Zoombies and Seascape growing rapidly on Moonriver and more will follow like myNFT, Unifty, Jambb and Yuser.

myNFT will shortly be finalizing a bidirectional NFT bridge between Ethereum and Moonriver/Moonbeam that will allow for transit of ERC-721s and ERC-1155s - we expect that to accelerate the growth of the NFT ecosystem on Moonriver and Moonbeam as well.

Given the permissionless nature of Moonriver and Moonbeam, we are also seeing projects deploy without necessarily having spoken to us. Recently a community driven NFT project called Moonsama launched on Moonriver, similarly to what is happening in the DeFi space on Moonriver.

Overall we are enthusiastic about the growth of both the NFT space and the overall ecosystem of Moonriver and we have many more partnerships that have yet to deploy!


Could you please introduce Moonbeam's investment lineup and other partners? And how did these collaborations started?

Yes sure - so far Moonbeam has had 2 private investment rounds followed by a community event called Take Flight where thousands of community members participated.

Moonbeam investors include:

  • Binance Labs
  • ParaFi
  • Coinbase Ventures
  • Fenbushi Capital
  • IOSG Ventures
  • Hypersphere Ventures
  • Arrington XRP
  • HashKey
  • ​​KR1

You can find more about those rounds here:

Moonriver on the other hand, has had no investment rounds and will not have any in the future. The crowdloan was the main distribution mechanism used for Moonriver.

Separately from the investment topic, we also work closely with the Parity and Web3 Foundation teams and have great relationships with both. The strength of the teams building Polkadot, as well as those building on top of Polkadot, are what originally attracted us to this ecosystem. We began working on Kusama in mid-2019 as a validator, which allowed us to get to know the Polkadot teams well. After we came up with the idea for Moonbeam, we submitted a grant to provide the Ethereum compatibility we’d built back to the ecosystem, which we have done by contributing the EVM pallet to Frontier (https://github.com/paritytech/frontier: Ethereum compatibility layer for Substrate. ). We have also continued to work closely with their ecosystem teams to build and grow the community of developers building on Polkadot via Moonbeam.


What is the token model of Moonbeam? Will it be traded on a centralized platform?

In terms of the utility of both the MOVR and GLMR token - both have the same utility as ETH does on Ethereum — they are used as gas for smart contract execution. But it also serves additional functions that are unique to Moonriver and Moonbeam. You use MOVR and Glimmer to participate in the Moonriver/Moonbeam on-chain governance system, to propose referenda, and vote on things like protocol upgrades. You also use MOVR and Glimmer for staking, which supports the selection of collators and secures block production on the network.

Regarding the tokenomics - there are some differences between Moonriver and Moonbeam.

Moonriver has a total supply of 10 million MOVR vs. 1 billion GLMR on Moonbeam. Also the allocations are somewhat different - Moonriver is meant to be a community-led network so a large allocation of MOVR was put towards the crowdloan.

MOVR is publicly available on several centralized exchanges which you can find on Coinmarketcap (https://coinmarketcap.com/currencies/moonriver/). It is also being traded on several DEX’s on Moonriver such as Solarbeam. Many of the DEXs deployed on Moonriver did it in a permissionless fashion, so the moonbeam team has not spoken to many of these projects, so please do your own research before engaging with them.

We also expect partners like SushiSwap and CREAM Finance to deploy in the upcoming weeks.

For details on the tokenomics of Moonbeam and Moonriver you can find them here:

https://moonbeam.foundation/moonriver-token/
https://moonbeam.foundation/glimmer-token/
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How can the community participate in Moonbeam?

If people want to get involved with Moonbeam and Moonriver I would encourage them to check out our docs site: https://docs.moonbeam.network/ to learn more about our project.

In addition I would say to stay tuned in our channels for the upcoming Moonbeam crowdloan where we will be looking for community support in order to win a parachain slot in the Polkadot parachain auctions. We can share some links after the AMA is over so you can subscribe to our different channels.

If you want to help the ecosystem grow through project referrals you can directly reach out to me on telegram (@fjagosti).

Also feel free to interact with the network by participating in governance referenda, or by staking your MOVR using our dashboard: https://apps.moonbeam.network/moonriver


Walnut has been deplyed on Moonbeam testnet. What other aspects can we cooperate with in the future?

I think there will be many opportunities to collaborate - given that Walnut has already deployed on Moonbase Alpha I would say the next step would be to have a Moonriver deployment!

Once that happens and users on Moonriver and Moonbeam get to know Walnut, there can be other initiatives we can work on together such as end-user product demos and so on.

Looking forward to working more closely with Walnut in the months to come!


What is the future roadmap for Moonbeam? Can you give a brief introduction?

For now our focus is to make Moonriver as stable and safe as possible. Secondly we want to continue to grow the ecosystem on Moonriver in the weeks and months to come - there is still a lot of potential for growth.

I would say the next major milestone will be to win a parachain slot on Polkadot and follow a similar launch process as we did on Moonriver (https://moonbeam.network/networks/moonriver/launch/).

After Moonbeam is effectively launched we will aim to grow it similarly to what we’re doing with Moonriver.

Exciting times ahead for sure!

The Moonriver launch process follows the model created by Kusama to gradually introduce functionality to the network as stability is confirmed.


I want to know what makes this project stand out, what makes it different from other projects that might be similar. Also, what is your maximum potential? And what are the outstanding features of your Project and how do you attract customers?

I think what makes us stand out vs. other projects on Polkadot/Kusama is that we're going all in on Ethereum compatibility, whereas other projects have different things in the works. Also the ecosystem we've built on Moonbeam is different from any other project on Polkadot or Kusama.

I can compare us to 2 other popular projects on Polkadot - Acala and Astar:

Regarding Acala - Acala’s evm is an extension to their substrate based defi suite. It allows the use of eg solidity smart contracts create apps that compose with the core acala defi apps and kusama / polkadot based assets on their chain. But they do not support the full web3 rpc so you can’t port existing dapp front ends and users will not be using MetaMask as the wallet. This is different from the moonbeam idea where we have created a full ethereum like environment, changed our underlying accounts to be ethereum like, and have full web3 rpc support. This allows for direct backend and front end ports of existing dapps, gives us better compatibility with existing ethereum tooling and infrastructure, and lets end users stay in MetaMask.

The other significant difference is that acala has built in defi functionality whereas moonbeam is just a platform and all functionality, defi and otherwise is provided by other teams deploying their protocols on top. My personal view is that acala will be like terra, and will be able to offer a great defi UX by optimizing the entire chain for their use cases. I see moonbeam as something more like polygon or bsc where we strive to be the best developer platform we can be with maximum compatibility with existing tools, and focus on ecosystem vs our own products.

Regarding Astar - I think the main difference between Moonbeam and Astar is specialization.

Shiden (Astar on Polkadot) has opted to offer a wide range of options including support for the smart contract programming language ink! which is native to substrate.

Moonbeam is solely focused towards improving and specializing in an Ethereum compatibility feature set, along with being a developer-centric platform. This includes adding tools like Solidity based smart contracts, Metamask, Truffle, Remix, Hardhat, a fully functional EVM, web3 RPC's and even a unified accounts feature that makes accounts and keys Ethereum-like on Moonbeam to reduce friction for EVM compatible projects to deploy on Moonriver and Moonbeam. We've also worked very hard to build a well-rounded ecosystem of projects that helps create a network effect on Moonriver and Moonbeam.

Another difference between our projects is that Plasm also offers L2 solutions on their chain whereas we currently do not.

The way we see it, while it is true that L2 implementations could perhaps offer more scalability, for projects that will need said scalability we think it would be more practical for them to have their own parachain since it would give them full control over the implementation, it's optimizable for various uses cases, and they would be able to benefit from the cross-chain interoperability that being a parachain offers, something that isn't as clear with L2's. There is a current lack of clarity regarding interoperability between different L2 solutions that has fragmented that market.

Having said that, both Astar and Astar are good projects with a competent team and we're happy they are on the Kusama and Polkadot ecosystem.

I recommend you to do your own research in terms of what projects you want to support!


Partners are very important for every project today, may I know which partners you have now? and which partners in the future you will be heading to?

yes i think our ecosystem is one of our greatest strengths. Many projects are implementing EVM compatibility functionalities, however the ecosystem itself is much more difficult to replicate.

You can find a list of our partners here: https://moonbeam.network/community/projects/

That list gets updated on a weekly basis - so we have many partnerships to follow.


What are the benefits of taking part in your project ecosystem? I am an investor. Do you have liquidity mining or single side staking after launch?

yes we are planning on having a liquidity incentive program on both Moonriver and Moonbeam. Details are yet to be announced however the moonbeam foundation does want to incentivize activity on its networks.

Please stay tuned for news around the liquidity programs!


Compiled by:

Sook Jin Goh,
Nutbox Ambassador for Malaysia,
Director at Nanyang Global Scientific Research Centre

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