ZED August Update
I will try to keep this short and sweet, however I do personally want to make a habit of providing the ZED community with more regular updates on what we have been doing behind the scenes, away from product development. We always talk about wanting our community to come on this journey with us and it is only fair that we stay true to that notion.
The state of Non-Fungible Token (NFT) industry is, I believe, is at a very interesting intersection. Having recently raised a significant amount of capital for the business to power forward, we have noticed a lot of attention and enthusiasm from institutional investors looking into the impact that NFT projects are causing.
The benefit of this is two-fold.
Firstly, NFTs are finally beginning to be seen as a vehicle that will propel blockchain into the mainstream; something we have been bullish on from the start. Secondly, it means that more businesses and startups will continue to support the NFT ecosystem with solutions where bottlenecks currently exist.
Speaking of bottle necks (gas any one!?), it has been a very research intensive period for the ZED business as we have been heads down looking for better ways to provide a seamless and unique experience; something that our community deserves. With any new technology, research must take place before delving deep into building something for the sake of well, building something. I have made this mistake before in past businesses, however I have extremely proud of the entire development team’s poise, structure and dedication in making huge strides overcoming technical hurdles where other similar businesses have struggled.
With that said, August has seen us having regular discussions with the very friendly folks at TON, NEAR, Dapper and Matic (I’ve probably missed a few) and its been overwhelming to see how many of these well-known businesses want us to bring the entire ZED ecosystem to their infrastructure/blockchains. As well as closing our funding round and launching ZEST, both Chris Laurent and myself have spent a chunk of our time exploring what a potential partnership would look like with these heavy hitters. Having these discussions is genuinely exciting, especially when we are offered financial incentives, dedicated resources and endless support with the shared vision of seeing ZED become a truly great and enduring dApp.
What Else Can You Tell Me!?
I’m glad you asked.
We have noticed a few users in our Discord channels mentioning “why don’t we get real wagering providers to create markets and take bets on ZED races?”
why don’t we get real wagering providers to create markets and take bets on ZED races?
Truth be told, since late 2019, we have been approached by some of the biggest global wagering providers wanting to do exactly that. There has been a lot of work conducted to ensure that we satisfy all regulatory requirements in the different jurisdictions across the globe. Doing so is no easy feat as it is costly and fully ladened with what seems like, a mountain of paper work. We have to remain tight lipped about these discussions however we are looking at putting pen to paper with a very well known outfit soon.
Geoff Wellman is not only a Co Founder and Head of Product at ZED, he is also responsible for growing the development team and truly instilling a remote culture across the entire business. ZED is a team of over 25 full time individuals (nothing in ZED is outsourced) and Geoff has played a pivotal role in managing the majority of this team.
Over the course of the last few months, Geoff has entered beast mode and has been a machine juggling many different aspects of product development as well as getting his hands dirty coding alongside the team. From a technical point of view, we are traversing a very focused period of development. The development team have clear goals and clear deliverables which will translate into our community seeing a host of new features and improvements across the entire website, making ZED more fun and easier to use.
ZED’s Creative Director and Co Founder, Chris Ebeling aka “Ebs”, has centered his time around building out more 3D environments as well as experimenting with other 3D technologies such as Unreal Engine. Easter egg time, I actually spent last weekend streaming our new 3D environments in the Discord #streams channel but no one noticed 😝
A major emphasis has been placed around the optimisation of 3D races on mobile and I’m happy to report that we are seeing sensational result on older devices such as iPhone 7’s and above; check out any replay in 3D now!
For those that don’t know, ZED 3D races are built in three.js which means, the rendering of graphics is all done in-browser and in real time. The downfall of this, is that it is difficult to optimise and generally, you need a decent computer to run 3D races at 60 frames per second. We are exploring other avenues to bring true 3D graphics to ZED which is something that Ebs is undeniably passionate about; after all, he has worked on blockbuster feature animation films such as The Lego Movie and Happy Feet! You should check out some of the stuff he has worked on here.
I am extremely hyped to welcome three newcomers to ZED that will be heading up our Marketing Team; Mac, Travis, Carlos. These guys are awesome, and are really taking charge and leading the way forward. One big positive of hiring a dedicated marketing team is that it has allowed both Chris and myself to focus on the wider business. Furthermore, the recent funding ZED has received will go a long way to ignite more marketing spend and to cast the ZED and ZEST net much wider.
If you have gotten this far, thanks for reading and if there is anything else you would like to hear from the ZED team, feel free to drop your questions in Discord; we are always reading everyone’s comments!
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