Tonic: Honorable mention for exciting use of Threads

winners-circle Nov 05, 2020

This week, we're kicking off a fun little blog series we're calling "The Winners Circle". We're excited to higlight some of the amazing projects that have been building on Textile products and tooling over the last few hackathons and events. We'll be hilighting teams building things for Apollo, EthGlobal, Hack the Rainbow, and elsewhere. So if you're looking for inspiration, ideas, or new teams to collaborate with, look no further than Textile's Winners Circle ­čśë.

We start off the series with Tonic, an Honorable Mention from the ETHOnline hackathon. Tonic is a DeFi app that actually works! In the words of @t_snark, who build Tonic:

Tonic is essentially a decentralized bank account. It offers fast payments, savings and investments. The account is denominated in dollars and  completely hides Ethereum from the user. The UX is designed to be like that of a web 2 challenger bank. To be clear, there is not a single interaction of the user with the blockchain, as a matter of fact the user does not own any Ether as everything is paid in USDC.

Tonic caught the eye of the Textile team during ETHOnline for its use of Threads for off-chain metadata storage, and the focus on providing a killer UX out the gate. It's not always easy to complete a hack on time during these events, let alone provide a seamless user experience on top of complex DeFi components/tools! Kudos to @t_snark for taking Tonic it so far, in such a short amount of time!

So to get a feel for the people behind the hacks, we've asked @t_snark and all our Winners Circle teams to answer a few questions about themselves and their projects. Here's what @t_snark had to say:

Where are you from?

I am based in Europe, currently writing from Belgium but I move around a couple of different countries.

How did you get interested in ETHOnline/Ethereum/IPFS?

I have been interested in Ethereum since 2015 but never really started hacking in solidity. In May this year, I randomly came across the finals of Hack Money and I felt I was missing out big times. So to accelerate my learning process, I decided to enroll in as many hackathons as I could. I also joined the Apollo Fellowship.

What got you interested in Textile?

I knew the basics of Textile from my Apollo days, so when I realized I needed some metadata persistence layer for Tonic, Textile seemed the most natural choice. The dev experience was top notch and I managed to build an MVP for a decentralized notification system and transactional/recipient metadata in just two days!

What pain point are you trying to solve with your hack?

Pain points which are slowing Ethereum adoption are alien/difficult UX (for outsiders) and transactional costs. At the product level, my pain points are the lack of yield in traditional savings accounts and the lack of good solutions for DCA on BTC.

What is your solution?

Tonic started as a challenge with myself. I wanted to see if I could build the equivalent of a challenger bank in 2 weeks. The solution is a "bank account" which looks and operates like a modern web2 banking app (i.e. Revolut), is denominated in USD(C) but is powered by the safety guarantees of Ethereum. In effect, we can replace large parts of core banking infrastructure and inefficiencies thanks to Ethereum and DeFi. Tonic can also act as a curated window into all the DeFi innovation while keeping the UX user friendly.

Why do you think developers/users might be interested in your project?

Different user personas might be interested in different aspects. For instance, people in countries with inefficient banking infrastructure might like the fast payment feature. Or for Users where savings accounts are giving real negative yield, might like the savings feature.

What are you planning to work on next? Any side-projects or technologies or things you are learning you are particularly excited about?

In regards to Tonic, I might give a stab at using Textile to build the wallet feature possibly with some sort of MFA. A possible side project I am thinking about is to write a book on a specific topic in Solidity, I am still on a learning curve so the writing would help me hone my knowledge. The goal for Q1 2021 is to settle on a project (it might be Tonic) and build a team/company around it, that's also why I am trying to meet as many interesting people as possible. Anyone reading this, please do get in touch if this piques your interest.

Where can people follow your work?

I am @t_snark on Twitter.

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