- Geo seeks to fix a ‘fundamentally broken’ internet by building systems that promote verifiable information, says Tal
- Tal recently stepped down as CEO of Edge and Node, the company behind the 2018 launch of decentralized indexing protocol The Graph.
A co-founder of blockchain-oriented startup The Graph is preparing a so-called knowledge organization application and corresponding Web3 browser with the aim of “building a new Internet”.
Yaniv Tal told Blockworks that 2023 should be the “breakthrough year” for Web3 – a space he says needs more tools to ensure auditability and security before it can really take off.
Geo, Tal’s next app, seeks to use encryption tools to organize public information into a decentralized knowledge graph. The company is ready to gather blockchain data and develop a navigable user interface accessible to everyone.
Tal is leading the charge on Geo after being part of the team that created The Graph – a decentralized protocol for indexing and querying blockchain data – in 2018. The development team responsible for The Graph was renamed Edge & Node , with Tal as CEO.
He stepped down as chief executive earlier this month to start the new business. Brandon Ramirez, who had worked as head of research and product at Edge & Node for two years, replaced Tal as CEO.
A front-end application, Geo is set up to leverage The Graph for data indexing, but will operate as a separate business.
“What I realized was that The Graph itself was really a central part of this [Web3] infrastructure layer, but we needed something else to access this global decentralized knowledge graph,” Tal said. “What it does is it sets standards for people to describe the shape of the data they want to organize, to actually add data, and to come to consensus on that data.”
A crucial application for Web3
The internet is “fundamentally broken,” Tal said, adding that users are now forced to trust the server and the website they’re on.
Venture capitalists such as a16z, BITKRAFT Ventures, and 1k(x) have recently hired investors to focus on web3-focused ventures as industry startups continue to spark intrigue.
“There are a lot of people who are excited about Web3, but in our mind, Web3 still doesn’t exist,” he said. “What you need is something like a real Web3 browser that gives you the benefits Web3 is supposed to give, and that’s verifiability.”
His new company intends to launch Geo Genesis – the knowledge graph offering – in the coming weeks, before making its Web3 browser widely available.
“There are established institutions — whether universities or large corporations — that we rely on today to tell us who to trust,” Tal said. “Really, we’d like to create better tools for communities to self-organize and for meritocracies to form where people can rise to the top of those meritocracies based on their contributions.”
Crypto players in the broad sense and DeFi in particular, such as DAOs and protocols, are likely to be among the most common early adopters, Tal said.
These communities could use Geo, for example, to curate lists of fraudulent DeFi projects by coming up with their own sets of standards and maintain those registries in a decentralized way, the founder added.
Geo also intends to become the system of record in other sectors, such as health and politics.
The company, which has a team of five and plans to hire front-end engineers, is focused on setting up governance and reputation systems. Tal said that “experts” in health, for example, could gain power within these systems based on the content they contribute.
“People may have different claims about which supplements are good to take or which type of exercise routines work best for different muscle groups,” he says.
Municipalities could also use Geo to organize data that could ultimately help shape public policy, Tal added.
“We would like cities to start adopting this technology to help capture government data, so that we can have a common set of facts that we use when trying to make policy decisions, while allowing people to actually capture their public policy positions and then hopefully structure arguments and debates,” he said.
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