Proposal for Summer Program


Skynet and Sia are intrinsically linked. Every app and user on Skynet is directly using the Sia network. Every file uploaded uses more available storage and creates new contracts, but more importantly pushes us closer to a digital world where privacy is respected and censorship is defeated.

Growth for the Skynet developer ecosystem supports more builders using, understanding and leveraging Sia as a foundational layer for web3, and Skynet usage moves Sia and the ideals of decentralization forward. Additionally, apps on Skynet grows Skynet and Sia usage into user communities that would not otherwise find or need these protocols.

For this reason, Skynet Labs is requesting $250,000 in siacoin from the Sia Foundation to fund a Summer Program targeting open-source developers.


The goal of the Summer Program would be to encourage and provide guidance to developers looking to build applications on Skynet. We’ve had success in seeing MVPs come out of hackathons, but we’d like to extend this success by creating a space for teams to give additional attention to their ideas, allowing projects to mature to a level that meets the needs of more users.

By directly funding individuals and creating a peer community for support and accountability, we believe that a 12 week program will seed multiple high-quality projects in the ecosystem with a momentum that can support continued development.

Summer Program

Skynet Labs will set up, promote and oversee a 12 week summer program to incentivize Skynet app development. Participants will develop their skapp over this three month period. Skapps can fulfill any criteria that betters the distributed storage ecosystem.

With a goal of 25 participants, each project will join a weekly meeting with other project teams to present their work and progress to the group. The Skynet team will be available for the duration of the project to provide insight and direction.

The participant’s goal at the end of 12 weeks is to create a functioning Skynet app that fills a new niche in the Skynet ecosystem. These apps will be open-source to support additional development and will be encouraged to build with and expand on Skynet Standards to support interoperable data across Skynet.

Development time will last from June 1 to August 31, 2022.


April - May 2022 :

  • Secure funding from Sia Foundation and finalize design of the Summer Program
  • Announce program and launch campaign calling for applicants

June-August 2022 :

  • Builders engaged in the Summer Program
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Thanks for the proposal, Manasi. This all looks pretty reasonable to me. I’ll convene the Foundation board shortly so that we can discuss the proposal and make a decision. In the meantime, two questions:

  • Can you describe how the funds will be used in a bit more detail? Specifically, how much is going to the app builders, and how much to Skynet Labs?
  • Will the app builders be required to open-source all their code? To adhere to the Foundation’s Charitable Purpose, it’s important that our funds are directed towards projects that benefit everyone.

Great to hear that and happy to answer any additional questions.

  1. Funds will be used 100% to incentivize builders i.e. all of it will go as grants to the developers in the program
  2. Yes! All our previous hackathons have required builders to open source their code and this program will be no different

Look forward to the decision by the board and getting this program rolled out!

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Excited to share the halfway point progress on the 12-week Summer Developer Program. This inaugural cohort consists of 23 active developers with diverse technical and geographic backgrounds working on projects across the gamut.

A few key highlights:

  • The program boasts developers of all levels of familiarity with web3 and all levels of programming skills. We’ve introduced several developers entirely new to web3 to the Sia & Skynet ecosystem and also provided an opportunity to continue development on old projects for existing community devs
  • Classic Skynet apps such as MARStorage, SkyDrop, appear alongside completely novel use cases that our ecosystem is seeing for the first time. We’re seeing developers opt to build storage applications, messaging platforms, dance skapps, SDKs, portal management software, decentralized social networks, indie gaming platforms, and sensitive (PII) data retrieval protocols
  • We have already hosted over 20 hours of scheduled programming, which included 5 workshops, 6 hangouts, and 5 presentation sessions with high attendance despite extreme timezone differences
  • A few of the projects have reached significant stages of maturity in their development and are capable of giving more sophisticated demonstrations and proofs-of-concept
  • All-in-all, developers have reported that the level and pace of the program have been extremely helpful to their building efforts

The developer program marks astonishing growth and unprecedented innovative creative work made possible by the Sia Foundation’s grant funding. With that, we’re planning a Developer Open House on July 20th (Time TBD), where developers from the cohort will have an opportunity to share their work thus far. We invite members of the Sia Foundation and those in the community to join us and see for yourself the wonders our community developers have made possible in just a few short weeks.

This first-of-its-kind developer program for the Sia and Skynet ecosystem has been designed, managed, and administered by Skynet Labs. We have learned a lot in the process. And this summer developer program has helped us establish procedures and frameworks in place for future successful programs.

Once again, thanks to Sia Foundation for making this program a reality. More exciting updates to come as the program progresses!

Our developer program has officially come to a close with a grand success. With the assistance of the Sia Foundation, Skynet Labs was able to successfully disburse the program grant (over 53 million Siacoin) to more than 20 developers and provide funding for their full-time creative work in the ecosystem. A review of the final products of our developers is available here:

Skynet Labs hosted internal workshops, produced well-attended public-facing social events, and facilitated weekly presentations where developers assisted and workshopped each other’s ideas. In feedback collected through surveys, the culture of the developer program was consistently remarked upon by developers as the program’s most exciting and enjoyable feature. Simply put, developers appreciated, that despite the differences in time zones and projects, they were a part of an active community of engaged members developing the ecosystem.

Skynet labs’ closure was inevitably a difficult hurdle to overcome. The activation caused by programs such as these which reward our most diligent developers has the ability to produce a resilient community that extends beyond the life of an entity.

Shoutout to our Dev Rel team – KagemniKarimu and Daniel Helm for making this inaugural program successful!