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Varun Kumar, CEO of Hashflow, on Decentralized Exchanges, AI, and the Future of ETH | Ep. 185

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In an exclusive interview with cryptonews.com, Varun Kumar, CEO of Hashflow, talks about the current state of crypto, growing decentralized exchanges, and the next steps for Ethereum. 

About Varun Kumar

Varun Kumar is the Co-Founder and CEO of Hashflow, a decentralized exchange designed for users to trade seamlessly across chains while offering zero slippage, improved pricing, and MEV-protection. Varun Kumar is the brains behind Hashflow, having previously served as an aerospace engineer.

Founded in 2019, Hashflow aims to connect institutional market makers to traders using a request-for-quote (RFQ) model as opposed to automated market makers (AMM). In turn, traders and liquidity providers gain enhanced efficiency, security, valuation and products previously impossible in DeFi.

Varun Kumar gave a wide-ranging exclusive interview which you can see below, and we are happy for you to use it for publication provided there is a credit to www.cryptonews.com.

Highlights Of The Interview

  • OpenAI’s GPT-3 Chat – a true game changer that will also impact the crypto industry
  • Current state of crypto – bad actors are gone and people have been red pilled
  • DEXs over CEXs – user experience and convenience are key growth factors
  • HashFlow – a decentralized exchange with less slippage
  • Ethereum – what’s next for ETH? Was the merge actually successful?

 

 

 

Full Transcript Of The Interview

Matt Zahab
Ladies and gentlemen, welcome back to the Cryptonews Podcast. We’re buzzing as always, and today we have a guest whose company is absolutely tearing it up right now. We’d love to see it. Today we have Varun Kumar, the co-founder and CEO of Hashflow, a decentralized exchange designed for users to trade seamlessly, across chains. Pumped to have this guy on very pleased to welcome Varun Kumar to the Cryptonews Podcast, Varun. Welcome to show my friend. 

Varun Kumar 
Thank you for having me, Matt. Excited to talk about the life I’ve had life. 

Matt Zahab 
You on to man, I’m pumped to have you on I think a good place to start would be the news of the last week. And that was shot from the ChatBot from GPT-3 and the team at OpenAI. It literally took Twitter by storm, not just Twitter. I even saw a good old LinkedIn post many LinkedIn posts about it. And honestly, they weren’t too cringy either. They were actually sort of comical unless of the I woke up this morning. And my dog took a dump. And I looked at his dump and created my new company was less of that, you know, cringe bullshit was actually quite nice. But what’s your whole take on GPT-3 AI this new ChatBot, you know, people are saying and it’s going to take over the world? What’s your two cents on it? 

Varun Kumar 
I think I’m a big fan. Right? So it’s already got over 1 million like daily active users since it got released last week. Since I think. Generally, I think I’m a big fan of like both GPT-3 chat, the ChatBot as well as the regenerator part, I’ve been seeing a show of people experimenting with like giving AI the cues and AI basically generate art or text or anything. But firstly, I was like, Okay, this could actually, maybe who knows, in the future, all these Tweets you’re seeing will no longer be written by people, it will be written by AI, there was already a job for making the trends. So like, we actually had an active role for social media person, then we’ll go Wait, do we need to hire a social media person now? Can we just tell the GPT-3 to generate the Tweets in the style I want? I think that could be really interesting. So generally, I think I’m actually quite excited. And I think this could really disrupt or make the work really easy for companies that are looking to generate like writing good blog posts and just creating content, I think it’s a good news for people who are looking to create content. But I think the interesting thing is like, would that actually also result in many people who actually have the jobs? Would they be taken away from them? Or how would you feel you’d have to compete with an AI to create like more banger memes or banger Tweets? 

Matt Zahab 
Definitely a bad day to be a copywriter. Like I’ve been playing around with it nonstop. And even the ability to just be like write me a 500 word article on like ETH, or Bitcoin or Hashflow or whatever, and it bangs it out. It’s so clean, and it also gives you a stencil. You know, like it’s pretty crazy. And then the going rates like 10 cents a word for most legit publications 1000 word article 200 bucks. 

Varun Kumar 
Crazy good. Like, I also divided poetry. It was like, feeling like, I blinked my eyes. And I was like, Wait, this is actually quite good. And I’m like, okay, maybe this is gonna be really exciting. So I’ve gone down the rabbit hole, I’ve been playing with that for the last like 48 hours. And I’m like, this is just blowing my mind. So I’m a big fan. 

Matt Zahab 
The thing that again, I wish I had the bandwidth and the skill set to take advantage of this. But you’re a coder, you know how to your developer. And I’ve seen people put in like, is this what are they right? They’d be like, hey, Is this legit? Or is this clean? Or what errors are in this subset of code? And then they copy and paste that and, and the ChatBot would literally like give the right code? Like that’s absolutely bonkers. That’s insane. That’s probably going to change a lot of coding jobs as well.

Varun Kumar 
Absolutely. I think Balaji had a pretty interesting, I forgot the Tweet where he talked about this on how the future of code like AI, you can just tell the AI to even like write stuff and give it the prompt on what you want. And it’ll generate out for you. And I saw that, this another close to the day where there was a trading strategy in Python. And then they just gave AI that prompt to write a trading strategy to do X. And they just wrote a Python script to do exactly that. And that was fascinating. So I think this is just the beginning right which is exactly why I’m okay. This is like going to be really exciting to see where this goes in the next few years. 

Matt Zahab 
Yeah, heck, I can add software engineer to my, to my LinkedIn bio now just ask, just ask OpenAI. It’s pretty crazy. One thing that I don’t like about it is the censorship. Now, this is obviously a very sticky subject to discuss. But what’s the right play here? Like? Do we want to have AI censorship? Do we want to make it a wild west like, and I’m not talking censorship in regards to sort of what it’s building, but just the topics that it can discuss are the topics in which it can bang out a bunch of text war, if you played around with that at all, like no political figures, no religion, there’s a whole lot of stuff that you really can’t ask it. Or you need to find a better way, you need to find better inputs and variables and queries to give it to the OpenAI, the GPT-3 for it to then give you the answer that you want, what’s your two cents on that. 

Varun Kumar 
Just really, genuinely fit in the boat that censorship is an insult to intelligence, or it’s just so generally I’m like, let’s not censor anything, and let the creativity flow. And because the moment you say, we can censor x is just over time, that demand is only going to keep going up. And at some point, you will just be like, Okay, let’s censor everything. That’s basically how it’s like giving power to that part of the state. Why they were you start with something small. And over time, it just grows. And then you basically have, like, basically, that slavery wherever you’re serving the state. Right. So that being said, there’s also things like having child pornography is likely not a good idea. So I think, is actually just a way to make it fair. So that’s were you draw that line. So I think that’s what it comes down to. 

Matt Zahab 
Who gets to draw that line? Right? 

Varun Kumar 
Yeah, I mean, some things are like logical, right? Like you know, child pornography is bad. Like, you know, you don’t need an objective debate to see whether it’s a good thing. No, because you’d know it’s bad, right? So you don’t need a person to defy that, which I feel like that is something that could just come by default, but the same time. That’s the things like writing some controversial piece about what you may think, is a conspiracy, but may not be a conspiracy, that’s like, that doesn’t need to be censored, right? So you can basically take liberties in terms of expressing opinions about subjects that other people may disagree with that, so that certain things where you can you, everyone can objectively agree that this is bad, right? And you don’t need to explain that to somebody. And like, let’s say child pornography is a prime example of something that no one is going to debate and say, No, that that’s a good thing. So things like that, you can by default, just does not have them. But besides that, I don’t think that there’s anything that is opinion based, I don’t think should be censored. 

Matt Zahab 
Well said, let’s jump into Crypto here and the current state of the market, by the time this episode airs, it will be very early ish to mid December around, you know, December 8, December 10 kind of thing. We just had the FTX fiasco about, you know, close to a month ago, we’ve had just a horrendous year through and through mind you a lot of incredible companies have been built. But for the most part, it’s been a bit of a rough year, and definitely an uphill battle for everyone in the Space. Now, one of the good things that has happened is consumers have finally understood the importance of decentralized exchanges, your keys are not your keys, not your coins, moving things offline, and just how centralized exchanges really are just no bueno as a whole. Really, the only purpose you should ever use them for is just really to onboard you know, Fiat to Crypto and otherwise, get it off, do your own thing. And this is obviously done extremely well for Hashflow as you guys are one of the leading indexes decentralized exchanges in this Space. But before we get into Hashflow, what’s your take on the current Crypto market? Do we have a positive year ahead? Do we have another year of a bloodbath? What do you think’s going to happen over the next 12 months? 

Varun Kumar 
So it’s hard for me to say what’s going to happen obviously, and anything I’m saying is basically just an opinion right? Just I don’t want anyone to take that as a signal. 

Matt Zahab 
Not financial advice, just an opinion. 

Varun Kumar 
Not a financial advice exactly. But I think on one hand short term is really bad like FTX par ing down 3AC Terra wasn’t like good for anyone right? Lots of people lost money. But at the same time, I also think that long term is good for the Space because many bad actors are gone at this point and I think it also red pilled many people in the sense that previously the things that they took for granted like them openly seeing how pretty much censorship to your media and everyone how they could basically that the system is working against the people and they could see it in like, you know, a nice they were basically despite what everything happened with FTX. They may or may not be very many consequences for the people involved. Like Sam or whatever right? He says so and which is kind of well, people seeing this corruption because they will see corruption in front of their eyes, I think it’s actually a good thing, who’s going to make many consumers a lot more alert and just see through the system for what it is. Right. So. And I think that’s a good thing. And also, I think that is going to, like you said, many retail or not, I don’t know what retail actually with many people have actually realized the importance of self-custody, and learning and making sure, you know, the, or going back to the philosophy of not increasing, not your keys, not your Crypto and so on that being said I still don’t think that the battle is completely won. Because many people still don’t understand Crypto, and many others still would rather just put money in a centralized exchange. And it’s easy. It’s convenient. 

Matt Zahab 
It’s easy. It’s convenient. That’s the right word. So it’s a cakewalk. It’s like, yeah, it’s such a treat to use, until you know that they could fuck you at any different time. 

Varun Kumar 
Which is where I think what could happen is you could use centralized venues as a way to do Fiat on ramps and off ramps. And then once you’ve done that, go and use a DEX. But I don’t think that’s the cleanest way to do it. Because if you’re going to go on Coinbase, or any centralized venue to trade, and the UX is so good, then there is very little incentive for user to leave their platform. Right. So I think what really needs to happen, and this applies to Hashflow as well, is that we need to work to make the DEX experience much better than it currently is, like, you know, yes, we can just connect your wallet and do your swag. But if you think about anytime, there’s like a bull run or massive retail rob rush into Crypto, that gas fees are gonna spike up like, you know, we’ve seen where last November paying like nearly $700 in gas. And that’s not something your average retail would want to do. They want more consistency; they want more convenience. Right. And I don’t think $700 in fees is convenience. So I think what we need to do is focus on the UX and basically build products that actually can compete with the centralized experience. Because I think right now, the big value proposition for DEX is you don’t you maintain your anonymity. So no KYC and you get to maintain your custody. And perhaps you get to trade some longtail assets that cannot be traded on centralized venues, especially during bull markets. But I’m not sure that’s enough. Right. So I feel like the value proposition needs to be such that you can also compete on the rates, you can actually compete on just overall UX which I think there’s a lot of work to be done. But it’s doable. I think that’s the challenge. And I think if we can nail that down, then I think it’s going to be much easier to onboard new set of users directly into DEX and I think that’s gonna be the next set of challenges and see how we tackle that would be really interesting. 

Matt Zahab 
How do you make a better user experience? Like, obviously, it’s a hell of a lot harder or easier said than done, excuse me. But you sort of talked about, you know, user experience as a whole the UI, the UX, the slippage, the gas fees, everything it needs to look, play, and feel like a centralized exchange, but it’s truly a decentralized exchange, but what sort of key areas you really need to focus on and really need to be almost perfect for that user experience to be similar to a centralized exchange. 

Varun Kumar 
Yeah, o I think one of the things is like certainty, right? If I’m seeing pricing Coinbase an app on a select, swap five, ETH coin, Coinbase gives me a rate. And I know that’s what we’re gonna get, like, why sees? You know, I’m gonna get what I see, there’s not that many surprises, there’s not going to be like, Oh, wait, something went wrong, right. So you almost always are guaranteed to receive what you’ve been promised. And I think that’s one of the big things. That’s a starting point, obviously, I think, which is kind of where we were like when you say no slippage on Hashflow, and so on, what we really mean is, if you’ve been promised that you’re going to receive 10 ETH for your 1000 USDC, then that’s what you’re going to receive like, you wouldn’t be frontline. You wouldn’t be sandwiched, attacked or anything else, that doesn’t matter what size you’re trading, you’re going to be guaranteed that execution right so that’s like a big deal. Because for small trades may not make sense. But if you’re trading large amounts and getting a good price, and also making sure that trade actually goes through without any surprises or being fun drum by enemy bot or something else is actually probably, you know, not something more sophisticated trader would be a fan of. So I think having those kind of guarantees, it actually makes the UX around trading a lot better. But then also, I think gas fees having like, you know, they go into Coinbase, there is no concept of gas fees, because you’re not really trading on chain, right? Like you’re basically trading against a centralized database. But at the same time, not having to pay gas is a good thing. And most average users don’t care about gas wanting to go to a DGN trading on Robinhood, they just want to do swaps, or trades, and they don’t need to worry about these extra things. And the moment on DEX, they have to think about these things. They just scares people away. So now, using our TOS will make gas a lot cheaper. But at the same time, I’m not sure if that’s like the final destination, right? So because even if you go with L2 routes, then you have to build a UX around how do you onboard people to help you it’s like, maybe you have to use some kind of a bridge mechanism. 

Matt Zahab 
Worst experience, there’s no worse user experience than using bridges. It’s that they’re all terrible. 

Varun Kumar 
So technically, I think you can replicate the centralized exchange experience, because you go and deposit on your Coinbase, and then you see a balance, and then you trade. And you can apply a similar UX for L2 onboarding where people deposit their ETH on Mainnet. And then what they see on the UX on the app is the L2 balance and then all trades happen on L2, and only when they want to exit is when they receive, you know, they can go back to virtual funds. And that’s when you bridge back to the L1, except for using optimistic roll ups the exit times that like a week, but that’s not good. That was the key roll ups are coming up soon. And I think that should speed up the exit times. But then we also built a pretty neat cross-chain solution that allows people to exit instantly from L2s for a nominal trading fee, which was actually solve that problem to a large extent. But still, I think these are some UX challenges right around like user onboarding. And then not to mention that most of the retail doesn’t own Crypto, while it’s at least a new ones. They have the Chase debit card, and they’re trying to link that to Coinbase to buy their first Crypto. And I think as a result, if you’re running a DEX, you can do Fiat onboarding, but then you’ll have to do KYC and other things. And if you don’t want to do that, and if you’re relying on a centralized venue to be your Fiat on that front partner, then you’re also losing your users to that exchange. So that’s the tricky part, specifically, which is you know, how do you maybe you can figure out Fiat on ramps on DEXs, without sending your users to some other venue to do get Fiat first or Crypto first? Or I don’t think they have a clear answer in terms of how we’re going to solve that. But that’s a problem we’ve been thinking about deeply in terms of how do you build UX that is very similar to what people have been used to like your Robinhood’s in the Coinbase of the world, but at the same time, it also preserves the permission less nature of decentralized trading, that doesn’t put people’s funds at risk, and allows for seamless trading of you know, any assets of course, they can change. Right? So that’s basically what they’ve been like focused on nailing down I think got, hopefully we’ll get there they have coming up coming months. 

Matt Zahab 
The no KYC for decentralized exchanges is such a big value prop, I would say it’s probably value prop numero uno, like, there’s really nothing but you know what I mean? Like, that’s why people use them. Is that not true? 

Varun Kumar 
I will say so. I mean, for many reasons, right, are so especially people who care about privacy, and if the whole idea of Crypto or one of the big propositions of Crypto is, you know, separation of money and the state and you don’t want your state to spy on you, or to basically track your, you know, you’re in any capacity, or you use money as a leverage to keep your slave basically, in that sense if people who care about privacy for them using a DEX or the big propositions of using DEX is not having to give the information to anyone, right, so, in which case, adding KYC to your DEX kind of goes against why these people trade. But that being said, I don’t think KYC is inherently a bad thing because knowing who your Counterparty is, incentivizes many market makers for the Counterparties to give you better rates because they know who they’re trading against. And they know the flow is not toxic, which means they can price the assets much better, much more favorable to the trade taker. It also obviously helps with removing any toxic flows incoming right, so those are some of the good things. And then also I think it’s going to look into things like lending or uncollateralized lending or partial collateralized lending, that the knowing who the Counterparty is and being able to assess the default risk. I think KYC and knowing what the Counterparty is primarily or some kind of on-chain identification is actually not a bad thing. Right. So the likely is a practical way to do it. But I just don’t know in the current paradigm. If you add KYC to a DEX, I’m not sure if it makes it any better than Coinbase or anything else. Like, you know, in a world where everyone has KYC, including DEXs and centralized exchanges. What makes a DEX better, is really the million-dollar question, right? So one could argue that non custody is a good is a big deal. But I’m uncertain about how many users really care about custody, then, some users may want someone else to manage their money, in which case, what else could be done at the DEX level that makes it really compelling for people to use the DEX over a centralized venue is something we need to figure out what. 

Matt Zahab 
Well said folks are gonna take a quick break, and we get back we’re gonna give a bunch of time to Hashflow again, which is absolutely making waves and tearin’ it up. But first, we got to give a huge shout out to PrimeXBT, who have been using for an absolute hot minute. We love them. They are a robust trading system for both beginners and professional traders. It doesn’t matter if you’re a rookie or a vet, you can easily design and customize your layouts and widgets to best fit your trading style. PrimeXBT also running an exclusive promo for listeners of the Cryptonews Podcast. Use the promo code CRYPTONEWS50. That’s CRYPTONEWS50 all one word to receive 50% of your deposit credited to your trading account, again that as CRYPTONEWS50, to receive 50% of your deposit credited to your trading account. And now back to the show with Varun. Let’s get into Hashflow. Why wouldn’t we give me the elevator pitch? What do you guys up to right now? You guys are absolutely tearing it up you and then we’ll get into some of the AVAX specific stuff, some of the AVAX and ETH specific stuff. Crazy numbers crazy AVAX volume on Hashflow. But before that, give me a 32nd elevator pitch on Hashflow. 

Varun Kumar 
Well, simple purchase via a decentralized exchange that allows users to trade any asset across any chain by simply connecting a wallet, or it’s just I think that’s the general pitch. And yeah. 

Matt Zahab
Like a cleaner UNISWAP with less fees and slippage. 

Varun Kumar
Oh, I wouldn’t even say that. I think UNISWAP is again, a pretty good product, right? So I would think of Hashflow as a improvement on the UNISWAP design, in the sense that you as a trader, you have more guarantees around your trade, like you don’t experience slippage in the sense that you basically receive what you say, right? You don’t run into any risks of being front run of insanity attacked by anybody. You can do interesting things like cross native cross chain swaps, we can trade between any chain natively without using leverage. And more importantly, you can price any asset class that is not limited to stable coins, or spot. Right. So these are basically where I think it’s a improvement on the other AMM design more broadly. Instead of using on chain pricing, we’ve been using off chain pricing, where can I take the market makers, and as a result of the design, you get all these ancillary benefits. 

Matt Zahab 
So you guys are really just a big old wholesaler? 

Varun Kumar 
Oh yes. I think we don’t sell it. Maybe we just we just aggregate sellers. We just bringing sellers and buyers together. 

Matt Zahab 
You’re an aggregate wholesaler who gives darn good prices, with very little slippage and very clean UX. The website, it is absolutely stunning. For the listeners, guys, go check out this website. It’s one of the cleanest websites I’ve ever seen in my life. Not even just Crypto specific, like literally all websites as a whole. Who’s your front end Dev? Like who came up with this? It’s so friggin clean. There’s I don’t even think there’s like 500 words on the website. And it literally explains everything like walking through the story. Did you have any impact on this? How much time and effort you guys put into the website? And how did you get it to come out is such a freaking clean product. 

Varun Kumar 
So I think the general philosophy I have around the product is everything is about telling a story. Storytelling basically makes or breaks anything. Right? So and less is more right? So like how do you tell what communicate the message you want to convey in the least possible words. And I think that’s something I usually think about a lot. Like anytime I write something about, can I trim down further and how do I say the same exact thing in less words? I say I think and I’ve been like you know, just forcing myself to write copies again and again. So that was a lot of iterations in terms of revising copies, but also for design and finance. I think we have to have the best, you know, people on the team like that one up I find leads like Brent. He was at Pinterest for like four years as a staff engineer/entry managers. And he pretty much did build the entire website on his own. So there was there was including the application. And the main websites is pretty much everything you see on the site into the app, like Brent pretty much wrote the entire 100% of the code, or like himself, so it was actually pretty, solid. And then for design, well, I think for the person, we have John. He used to be at Facebook or Meta for like, seven years in the Oculus team. And then he started jamming on this a year and a half ago. And then when they find less, there’s just you know, he got Redfield into joining the Crypto he was talking to John Okay, so if you want to try this Crypto thing, he’s a guy, I don’t understand Crypto, but surely he’s a contractor for like a month. See this actually my thing? And then a month and a half later, he’s like, Okay, I think this is only Okay, so you’re gonna leave Facebook, then he’s like, yes. Okay, great. So I think half our team, pretty much we post all the smartest engineers, and designers from Facebook and Airbnb. 

Matt Zahab 
Just smart. Just going down the website, landing page, super clean black writing, white background, the future of trading begins here, trade any asset on any chain in seconds, no deposit, no BS, there’s literally pretty much only one call to action, which is launch app, which is exactly what you want. You click it, boom, the app comes up. And then again, what’s the biggest part of anything? You know, Robert Cialdini persuasion, Pre-Suasion, you need social proof. You guys have the 10 billion plus and total volume with six massive coins/ecosystems on there. Just trade no BS, no deposits, no commission, no surprises. I’m going to steal your website. I’m letting you know right now that I’m taking this stencil for some of my clients. This is absolutely brilliant. Just well done. 

Varun Kumar 
Like they say imitation is the best form of flattery. I would also say via the websites I’m a big fan of is Stripe. I think it’s not just me, I think most designers use Stripe as the gold standard. And I think Stripe did a phenomenal job in terms of the attention to detail they have on the left side, like literally every little like to kind of pixel I think every little interaction and movements is just so well thought out. I think I’m like you. I mean, I used to like Stripe old website more than the new one. Like when they had like the little spinning gear, and then you know, it returned and it was really beautifully done. Right? You say I think that’s it Stripe is like one of the best things to happen in design Space, like just so, I would highly recommend checking that out if you haven’t. 

Matt Zahab 
Did you guys design for mobile or desktop? Like did you optimize one over the other? 

Varun Kumar 
Oh, so the application is primarily optimized for the desktop. And people can access it on mobile, and it works fairly well on mobile too. But we’ve been thinking about, like just building a native mobile that just works and designed for mobile users. Because I think the way if you think about it, if you want to onboard the next 35 users, I think mobile is going to be playing a big role in doing that. But obviously, there’s a bunch of other interrelated things that we need to do first before we venture into mobile. But I think that’s something we have been thinking about, and we’ll be on the right path. 

Matt Zahab 
Walk me through this crazy influx of Avalanche aka AVAX volume that you guys have had over the last couple of months. Like is there a reason for why so much AVAX has been traded on Hashflow?

Varun Kumar 
Super short answer is we have better rates than everybody else. So that’s a big one. 

Matt Zahab 
That will usually do the trick. The Big Three, right? Whenever anyone buys anything, first you have price, then you have service, then you have expertise. 100 times out of 100 to get the best price boom, get more people in the door. Sorry, continue.

Varun Kumar 
With that being said, I think the reason I say we have better rates is because I think the best way to see is how is your market share compared to others on DEX aggregators, and I think 1INCH is probably the biggest tax aggregator at the moment. And we usually see a bunch of the trades come through us, right, so we have a pretty big market share 1INCH, and I think that kind of tells us that you know, there’s this volume, anatomy, it’s a pretty competitive compared to some of the other similar DEX out there, right. But I also think, for the last few months, there’s been a massive influx in just the market for our growth in our Avalanche ecosystem itself, which is like, independent of Hashflow, right, I think Avalanche in general as well, over the last few months, I’ve seen a lot of growth in that ecosystem. And I think that could also be another contributor to why the volumes of AVAX went up significantly over the last few months, the combination of growth on a mass itself combined with us just offering more competitive rates for people to come and trade. 

Matt Zahab 
Why is AVAX picked up steam over the last two months, so they don’t anything special on Twitter, I’ve seen a bunch of stuff but like devs are working hard, blah, blah, blah, but like, you know, what the heck does that mean? Is there any reason for that? 

Varun Kumar 
I don’t know. Exactly, to be honest, why, but they have been shipping a bunch of things like they talked about the AVAX subnets, and then there is like new protocols coming up on AVAX that have been deployed. And then there’s I think they’re also getting into this AAA game that I think some of it, Luigi DeMeo was talking about, that it’s going to be built on AVAX. And this can be leveraging NFT markets. This is I think they’re also getting into gaming. So there’s a bunch of things happening there. But I don’t know the specifics of what caused the search unnecessarily. But that being said, there is a bunch of innovation in AVAX. There are strong teams, so I think, and their product is pretty good. Like I’ve never had any trouble with the chain. So I think that all in all, I think they’ve been doing pretty well. I would say though, that there’s a long way to go in that sense, because Ethereum is still the king. And I think especially when you talk about DeFi, I think Ethereum and DeFi like they basically go hand in hand. But it’s just I think, Ethereum still has the biggest market share for DeFi. And Solana has had the narrative like NFT’s in gaming are going to be on Solana since I think. And they’re still going at it since I think that’s interesting. I haven’t found what’s that AVAX narrative, yet. I don’t know what that AVAX narrative is going to be? Yes, in the next year or two. That being said, they hopefully get tech and I think they have the right people to build. So I’d be very curious to see AVAX. Lance in the CF narrative.

Matt Zahab 
It’s good point about the narratives to just sort of fortifying your point about everything is storytelling it you know, every ETH has its story, Bitcoin has a story and Solana has its story, Matic has its story, but you’re right about AVAX, I don’t really know what their narrative is, what the gen pop thinks of them, and what their ETHOS. But let’s go back to ETH for a sec, you have some really interesting points about Ethereum network upgrades and their implications for the future of sort of the numero uno Altcoin, which you’ve discussed many times and the meaning of the Shanghai Hard Fork. What does this have in store for the future with Ethereum? And how successful was the merge? Was it as successful as the media talked about? Tell me more about this.

Varun Kumar 
Yeah, for sure. I think much was one of the most successful, if not one of the biggest events in the Ethereum ecosystem, right? So definitely say, it was like, very successful. Like, don’t let the price be the detrimental side, you know, that because many people look at the price they go, which happened with the price didn’t change. But I’m like, I don’t think price. I mean, price important, obviously. But at the same time, I don’t think that defines the tech, and the research that they’re in foundations, putting into building these things myself. And they’re still, you know, so that part hasn’t changed. They’ve never changed, it was always there. And I think, and they’ve they continue to innovate. So I would say merge was one of the most successful things Ethereum has done. Right. So and with Shanghai Hard Fork, I think were the key and interesting things that’s gonna come out of that is until now, people have been staking that ETH for the for the PoS chain. But I think the idea is like after the Shanghai Hard Fork, people will be able to withdraw their state assets for the Beacon chain. So that’s going to be one of the exciting things for developers to come out of that. And then there’s also talks about the V1 of product bank Sharding, they implemented. And then also, there’s been talks about the gas becoming much more cheaper by implementing the Blobs or roll up technology. So I think, at the moment, it’s unclear of what are the EIP proposals that will go through the Shanghai Hard Fork or the Shanghai upgrade? But I think the key one that most people have been talking about is the ability to virtual their assets or state assets and Beacon chain. I think that’s definitely going to be part of it. What others are going to be in that upgrade? Is TBD. I think Team Viko had a pretty interesting Tweet because of what would go through. So I would recommend I can send you a link to that later. But I think they had a pretty good detail in terms of what you could expect from the Shanghai upgrade. But I think that’s all I know at the moment. But there’s like seven or eight VIPs that should be part of this upgrade. So there’ll be a big one. 

Matt Zahab 
Love that, Varun. Thanks, man. Great episode. I know we’re already past time, we have to wrap up. What a treat really appreciate you coming on man. And we’d love to meet you in person one day. Until next time, can you please let our listeners know where they can find you and Hashflow online. And on socials? 

Varun Kumar 
For Hashflow on Twitter it’s just @hashflow. That’s the handle. So super clean out there. Like there’s just no underscores anything? And then hashflow.com is the website that should have all the social links available. And my personal handle is @GandalfTheBrown on Twitter. 

Matt Zahab 
So funny, what’s the story behind that? 

Varun Kumar 
So I used to be into gaming, and I was a big fan of Counter Strike Condition Zero, back in the day in early 2010, and whatnot. And that used to be my handle in there so the joke was basically about at that time, my handle was @GandalfTheWhite. And then someone was like, ah, but you’re not white. I’m gonna get it so I actually began to brown and that’s kind of how I changed my handle to @GandalfTheBrown that I think that stayed there. And then that became a joke and then became my online plan go for literally every other platform and now basically, my GitHub is @GandalfTheBrown. 

Matt Zahab 
It’s you alter ego. 

Varun Kumar 
So yeah, it’s my alter ego now. I think that’s kind of how I you know, that happened. That was a little backstory behind @GandalfTheBrown. 

Matt Zahab 
Love that man. What a treat. Thanks again for coming on and can’t wait for the next one. Thanks Varun. 

Varun Kumar 
Of course. Thank you Matt. 

Matt Zahab 
Folks, what an incredible episode with Varun Kumar co-founder and CEO of Hashflow dropping knowledge bombs left right and center. If you guys are doing trades, obviously go check them out decentralized, no KYC and the cleanest in the Space, if you enjoyed this one and I hope you did please subscribe it would mean the world to my team and I, and speaking of the team love you guys and listeners, you’re the GOAT. Keep on drilling those bags keep on staying healthy, wealthy and happy bye for now and we’ll talk soon.

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