Olga Ukolova was our guest in this week’s episode of the Relai Bitcoin Session. Olga gives her perspective on what is to come for Bitcoin.
The conversation between her and Julian focuses on the benefits of the Bitcoin network, especially as a blockchain that can be built on. She also talks about the RGB protocol, a project that she and her team are currently working on to enhance the Bitcoin network.
You can view the episode here:
Or you can tune in on AnchorFM.
The Main Takeaways
From her experience working on blockchain-powered solutions, Olga has found that Bitcoin is the best blockchain to work on.
A neuroscientist by training, Olga got into Bitcoin while in university as she wanted to make a livelihood for herself. At that time, she became an engineer, rose to become a project manager then later joined a team that was building a censorship-resistant distributed system using AI. This was back in 2007.
How Did Olga and her Team Get Into Bitcoin?
In 2017, Olga and her team started exploring blockchain as a solution to base their AI system on. At that time, she had only heard of Bitcoin during the Russia-Ukrainian war of 2013-2014, where Bitcoin was providing a safe and efficient way to send and receive money when on the war front.
As a starting point, the team decided to build on the Ethereum blockchain with the hope that it would be scalable and provide the resources that they needed. More than half a year later, they understood that they were spending more time fighting bugs on Ethereum rather than working on their own project.
“Ethereum lacks a couple of very important and core principles for example; confidentiality, scalability and privacy. We could not find this on Ethereum so we understood that we needed to switch otherwise the project is doomed.”
The team saw that the Ethereum blockchain did not align with the principles of their project, which included bringing sovereignty to AI agents. They also realized that the time that it would take for the Ethereum blockchain to evolve to meet their needs would be too long.
With this realization, they switched to RSK, a project which uses the Bitcoin blockchain while providing a smart contract layer for the development of decentralized applications. This also didn’t work out, however, since the team ended up contributing a lot of time to building RSK instead of their own project. At this point, they learned about RGB.
Bitcoin is the most secure and least complicated blockchain, and there are numerous second layers being built on top of it. RGB is both a second and third-layer technology. Bitcoin can be scaled and developed further by these layers.
Olga’s team jumped into the development of RGB because they saw that the potential and idea of the technology were solid. They also understood that could be the layer that they needed for their AI-related project and any other project that they were to build. RGB will also be able to help with rights management eg. Bear Rights Management, AI computations, and in huge amounts of use cases where companies will need to manipulate company assets or shares.
RGB has been in development for the past two years and is planned to be released by the end of 2021.
“Now we actually can say that we finally have something even more robust, even more scalable and even more usable on Bitcoin with RGB”
When it comes to Bitcoin as a community, Olga notes that it is different from many other cryptocurrency communities. This is mainly because Bitcoin has sovereignty by giving power/jurisdiction to an individual, especially when it comes to controlling money, as compared to many others which are often more socialist.