Standard Grant: SiaLearn

Introduction

Project Name: SiaLearn
Name of the organization: Dapp Mentors Ltd.

Project Description:

Problem Statement
A consistent issue across various blockchain networks is the lack of comprehensive developer education, which includes video courses, article-based tutorials, and hands-on training. This deficiency hinders developers from effectively building within the ecosystem. Unfortunately, the Sia network is no exception, with a scarcity of educational resources felt across YouTube and many developer communities. Our team experienced this firsthand when integrating with the Renterd API, struggling to find the guidance we needed.

We initially encountered significant challenges when integrating and interacting with the Renterd API, spending a considerable amount of time to determine the optimal integration approach. The process would have been much smoother with a video tutorial guiding us through the steps. Now, we want to create such a resource to spare new developers the difficulties we faced, making it easier for them to integrate the API into their platforms.

Our Solution
To address this gap, we propose SiaLearn, a developer educational program designed to provide comprehensive, evergreen training courses and resources for building on the Sia network.

Program Features
SiaLearn will offer:

  • A series of long-form and high-impact developer training courses (evergreen content).
  • Freely available video tutorials on YouTube and other developer communities.
  • Hands-on approach with open-sourced real-world example projects.
  • Emphasis on user-owned data and privacy in web3 development.
  • Online learning combined with hands-on development through real-world projects and Hackathon competitions.

Course Projects Scope
We are aiming to launch this SiaLearn with the four projects below which we believe will help developers quickly build upon the Sia ecosystem:

  1. VidTV Project: A video streaming platform that once developed and translated into a course will help developers understand how to integrate an application with Sia Renterd infrastructure.

  2. DiscoBot Project: A discord bot that will provide real-time information on the condition of a user’s data, it will report if someone just viewed or downloaded a file, and it will also provide Renterd storage contract information such as balance. This will provide a practical tutorial on how bots can be used to enhance user experience and analytics in the Sia ecosystem.

  3. X-cend Project: A project devising a means to seamlessly transfer user-owned data from Google Drive to Sia Renterd. This will educate developers on how to move bulk data from one platform to another, providing another means for them to perform file transfers on the Sia Network.

  4. NFT Breeding Project: A project to create a Child NFT by combining traits from Parent A and Parent B, with digital art stored on Sia’s decentralized network. This project showcases how developers can integrate Sia’s ecosystem into their web3 apps, promoting understanding and innovation.

Curriculum Structure
Our program will follow the structure below:

  • Introduction: This module introduces Sia, highlights its unique features, and emphasizes the importance of user-owned data. We’ll also invite learners to join our Hackathon challenge, where they can put their skills to the test and innovate on the Sia network.

  • Ecosystem Walkthrough: This module will walk developers through the various Sia services, including Hostd and Renterd, and concludes by presenting the Sia Renterd API documentation.

  • Environment Setup: This module will guide Windows and Mac OS users on setting up their development environment for the project, including instructions for running Renterd on Mac, Windows, and Docker-compose.

  • Course 1: This course is based on Project 1, and will guide the learner step-by-step on how to build a streaming platform where they can both upload and stream videos from their user interface.

  • Course 2: This Project 2 based course will instruct the user on how to integrate a bot into their Sia-based application and will provide an easier pathway for people who intend on monitoring other aspects of their Rented service.

  • Course 3: This course teaches developers how to create a practical solution using Project 3 as a foundation. Developers will learn how to build a cross-platform data transfer app, migrating from centralized storage providers to the decentralized storage of the Sia Network.

  • Course 4: This course will speak more to the web3 developer teaching them how to create an NFT Breeding dApp that utilizes the Sia Network for decentralized storage. The codebase for this course will be the Project 4.

  • Conclusion: This module will provide a closing remark for the program series. It will also re-echo the invitation to our Hackathon challenge and refer developers to the Sia discord server thereby enhancing community engagement, collaboration, and promotion.

Target Audience
SiaLearn is designed for developers with basic blockchain knowledge, dApp builders, and those aspiring to build decentralized storage-based applications. The program will provide video courses and written tutorials specifically targeting the Sia ecosystem, catering to developers at various skill levels.

Goals and Impact
By combining online learning with hands-on development through real-world projects and Hackathon competitions, SiaLearn aims to equip developers with the skills to build decentralized storage-based applications that promote user-owned data. By bridging the learning gap in Sia development, SiaLearn will foster a collaborative community driving ecosystem growth, ultimately empowering developers to build innovative solutions on the Sia network.

Project Beneficiaries:

The beneficiaries of this project are multifaceted:

  • Developers: By providing comprehensive training and resources, this program will empower them to acquire new skills, stay up-to-date with the latest technologies, and unlock new growth opportunities.

  • The Sia ecosystem: By bridging the learning gap and fostering a collaborative community, SiaLearn will drive ecosystem growth, increase adoption, and strengthen the Sia network, attracting more users, developers, and partners.

  • Users: As more developers build innovative applications, users will have access to a wider range of decentralized storage solutions, enhancing their overall experience and providing them with more control over their data.

  • Sia: By investing in developer education and ecosystem growth, Sia will further establish itself as a leader in the decentralized storage of the blockchain space, demonstrating its commitment to the community, promoting user-owned data, and setting itself up for long-term success.

  • Sia Marketing Team: The Sia marketing team can always refer to this program’s (SiaLearn) resources as a practical example when engaging with the developer community.

How does our project serve the Foundation’s mission of user-owned data?

The SiaLearn project serves the Sia Foundation’s mission of user-owned data in several ways:

  1. Empowering developers: By providing comprehensive training and resources, SiaLearn enables developers to build innovative decentralized storage-based applications that prioritize user-owned data.

  2. Promoting decentralized storage: SiaLearn focuses on decentralized storage solutions, which allow users to maintain full control over their data, aligning with the Sia Foundation’s mission.

  3. Fostering a community: SiaLearn creates a collaborative community of developers, encouraging the development of user-centric applications that prioritize data ownership and privacy.

  4. Education and awareness: By educating developers about the importance of user-owned data, SiaLearn raises awareness about the significance of data privacy and security, furthering the Sia Foundation’s mission.

  5. Innovative solutions: SiaLearn encourages developers to build innovative solutions that prioritize user-owned data, driving innovation and adoption of decentralized storage solutions.

Grant Specifics

Project Budget:
We are requesting $33,700 $27,700 for 4 months, to be disbursed in line with the milestones outlined below. This budget will cover the following costs:

  1. Team salary for open-source project development: $16,000

    • This will cover the salaries of developers working on the open-source project, which is the core of the SiaLearn initiative.
  2. Team salary for content production: $10,000

    • This will cover the salaries of the lead course instructor, video production, and editors working on video tutorials, and graphic illustrations.

    • This will also cover the costs of creating written tutorials, including writer fees, editing, and proofreading.

  3. Hackathon challenge: $3,000

    • This will cover the costs of organizing and promoting the hackathon, including prizes and marketing expenses.

    • This Hackathon will commence at the launch of the program which will not only bolster our efforts to promote the Sia ecosystem but also encourage greater community engagement.

  4. Promotion & marketing efforts: $3,000

    • This will cover the costs of promoting the project, including social media advertising, content marketing, and community engagement.
  5. Additional setup items: $1,000

    • This will cover the costs of creating in-studio promotional materials, such as Sia picture frames, T-shirts, Merch, and other swag.
  6. Extra WIndows PC: $700

    • This will cover the cost of an extra Windows computer to illustrate project setups on an operating system other than Mac.

Project Milestones:
The first milestone shall be paid on approval to enable us to begin work. Here are the project’s milestones for a total of 4 months (May 30th to September 30th, 2024):

Milestone 1: Course Project Development (1 Month and 2 weeks)

  • This phase covers the design, development, testing, deployment, and hosting of the four projects, which include the X-cend, VidTv, DiscoBot, and NFT Breeding projects.

  • Each project will progress through the following stages: UI/UX design to match the Sia branding style, full software development, bug testing, deployment to test server for live demonstrations, documentation creation, and open-source release on GitHub.

Milestone 2: Content Development & Production (1 Month)

  • This encompasses the transformation of the projects into video, including video recording and editing, along with any necessary adjustments and reshoots.

  • This also includes the transformation of the videos & projects into article tutorials, including article writing and editing, along with any necessary adjustments.

Milestone 3: Content Release & Promotion (1 Month)

  • Promotion is important to us in this program, we want enough developers to see these courses, that’s why we are self-promoting them on X-Twitter and LinkedIn.

  • This phase covers the promotion of the playlist video FREE on our Dapp Mentors YouTube channel.

  • Also, it includes the publishing of article versions on developer communities like Dev.to, Hackernoon, and Medium.

Milestone 4: Hackathon Support, Mentorship, & Mentorship (2 Weeks)

* As earlier stated, we are also Introducing a Hackathon at the launch of this program which will not only bolster our efforts to promote the Sia ecosystem but also encourage greater community engagement.

* This Hackathon will involve developers building and submitting projects based on Sia ecosystem integration.

  • The project will also utilize the Discord server for ongoing mentorship, guidance, and support for learners.

Potential risks of the project:
Two potential external risks we consider are:

Risk 1: Inadequate promotion and marketing efforts

  • Potential risk: Inadequate promotion and marketing efforts can lead to a lack of visibility and engagement with the developer community.

  • Mitigation plan: To address this risk, we have allocated a significant budget and time frame for promotion and marketing efforts.

Risk 2: Inadequate support for developers

  • Potential risk: Inadequate support for developers can result in frustration and dissatisfaction with the SiaLearn program.

  • Mitigation plan: To combat this risk, we have already established:

    • A dedicated Discord server for learners to connect, ask questions, and receive support.
    • A responsive dev team is available to address any technical issues or concerns.
    • A comprehensive resource library, including documentation, tutorials, and code samples.
    • Ongoing feedback collection and improvement of support resources to ensure learner satisfaction.

Why Us?

Our core team members include me Darlington Gospel, the Founder and CEO of Dapp Mentors Ltd, a company at the forefront of the Web3 space. With over 8 years of experience in software development, I’ve specialized in blockchain technology since 2020.

My expertise covers Blockchain and Fullstack Software Development, Technical Instruction, and Content Creation. I run a blockchain and web3 channel called Dapp Mentors. I’ve authored over 40 articles, developed premium courses, and published a book on Smart Contracts, web3, and DeFi, significantly contributing to the educational landscape.

I’ve led projects like Dapp Mentors Academy and am spearheading the development of a decentralized educational platform (peoplelearn.io). My passion for education and technology, especially in Blockchain and AI, drives my professional journey.

Additionally, I’ve had the privilege of collaborating with the ICP DFINITY Foundation and The Sia Network, contributing to their ecosystems and furthering my understanding of blockchain technology.

The team is further strengthened by Ebenezer Enietan who is a seasoned tech leader with over 15 years of experience in software development, blockchain consulting, and tech education. His expertise in Solidity, React.js, Node.js, and SQL, combined with his leadership roles at White Creativity and GeNext Logistics, positions him to contribute significantly to this program.

Also, Princess Uhiene is a skilled frontend developer, project manager, and technical writer with a strong background in React.js, Next.js, and TypeScript, making her an ideal candidate to help us manage this project and ensure we meet deadlines. Her dedication to our company and experience in project management align well with the project’s goals of creating developers’ empowerment content.

Development Information

Will all of our project’s code be open-source?
Yes, all project code will be open-source and made available on GitHub.

Do we agree to submit monthly progress reports?
Yes, we agree to submit monthly progress reports in the forum.

Contact info:
Email: contact@dappmentors.org

Any other preferred contact methods:

Forum: @DappMentors
Discord: Daltonic
LinkedIn
X-twitter
YouTube
Website

Thanks for your new proposal to the Sia Foundation Grants Program. The committee is requesting some additional information.

  • The Foundation isn’t interested in conducting a hackathon via the Grants Program currently. Please remove this item.
  • The Foundation does not fund marketing initiatives. Please remove this item.
  • Can you provide specific examples of previous video content that are similar to what you want to create for this grant proposal?

Once the above is provided the committee can re-evaluate this grant.

1 Like

Thanks, @steve! We’ve updated the proposal as requested, removing Hackathon and marketing expenses. We’ve also included multiple example videos below showcasing similar works and our expertise in this project area.

We have many more videos, but these examples should be enough for what the committee has requested.