[Surprise AMA 10/30/2021 (From Ethiopia)](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L5au7JEPMaM).
This is not a 100% accurate transcription and it is not complete. I tried to summarize some of the more interesting notes from the most recent AMA Charles did. If I quote something, I tried to get it right, but I may have misspelled something or misheard, so I do not guarantee perfect accuracy here. Anyway, I think I got the gist of it. I tried to keep it focused on questions that were about the state of Cardano, the vision for scaling Cardano, digital economics. I didn’t focus on more personal or off-topic stuff. There’s a long discussion about Shibu Inu, Doge coin, and I didn’t feel like taking notes on this.
**General State of the Union**
* Alonzo Hard Fork September launch was a great success, and October was about adding in a lot of features.
* Final stages of a Plutus application back-end (PAB). Transitioning from low-level Assembly language of Plutus to high-level applications like Sundae Swap and Meld are going to start deploying soon. Estimates PAB to go live, best estimate around November, but stuff happens.
* Babbage hard fork between November 2021 and February 2022 – going to be a boatload of changes and optimizations. Basically the first wave was about correctness, and now they are going to focus on optimizations for scalability and real-world deployment. There is a layered execution strategy with Cardano.
* John Woods (lead technical architect of Cardano, https://ie.linkedin.com/in/johnalanwoods) is focused for the next 6 months on optimization of performance, more throughput and scaling up systems parameters. Specifics are things like “k”, the blocksize, reducing the memory footprint (perhaps by 50%), how the data structures work in the system, UTXO-HD (hybrid storage of memory and hard drive), script compression.
* Other parties are going to come in and optimize the Haskell code. Everything was first written for correctness, now they are focusing on optimization and scalability.
* Another layer of workstream is Mithril (https://iohk.io/en/research/library/papers/mithrilstake-based-threshold-multisignatures/). Light client solution with full node security.
* Another layer is improving the performance of Daedalus and also adding in light client support on the IOHK end. As well as improving the light client ecosystem.
* One of the most anticipated is the Hydra workstream. Goal is to have something by Q1 (first quarter of 2022?) that is a good beta, that can be attached to commercial partners like DEXes to see how one can offload traffic onto the Hydra Network for payments and for smart contracts.
* Mamba – hoping for something developers can experiment with as early as January. Mamba adds in EVM (Ethereum Virtual Machine) support.
* Yet another thread is standards for verifying smart contracts and their correctness.
* Digital Identity – full prism integration into Cardano stack. This has been underway due to the Ministry of Education deal, the Boost mobile deal, etc.
* The dApp store is another thread that is going on, so on and so forth.
* 300-400 people are working on all of these things.
* IOHK foundation announced a $25 million budget for 2022.
* EMURGO (https://emurgo.io/) is trying to launch at least a $100 million fund that is Africa focused to start building out an ecosystem there.
* Catalyst – 150 proposals were funded in the 6th round, largest one yet. $8 million Fund 7 starting in November.
* A lot of social media criticism regarding the price. There’s usually a big buildup and a big drawoff. Charles says he doesn’t care and isn’t focused on that. Charles doesn’t understand market swings, and stays focused on technical development.
* “Every single metric of Cardano is looking real strong.”
* Africa tour – overwhelming demand in e-governance and identity.
* Met up with a lot of startup accelerators that want to build up on Cardano.
* Anticipates dozens of deals coming from this Africa tour. The bottleneck is not having enough bandwidth to handle everything.
* Zanzibar is launching a nation scale ISP with Cardano at the bedrock of it that will cover 1.8 million people. Expects a 12-to-24 month timeline in terms of rollout. Believes that what they do in Zanzibar will transfer over to many other nations.
* People are already writing Solidity code that can be fueled and powered by Ada (mentions dsSpark – https://dcspark.io/).
* Over last 2 months – tens of thousands of NFTs been issued.
**ERC-20 Cardano Converter**
* SingularityNet is in the process of migration
* Two targets for ERC-20: one is the main chain, the other is Mamba
* More resources will be invested in the ERC-20 team
* ERC-20 to native asset standard, first example of this is going to be Singularity Net. This will be a case-study and they will work backwards to a more generic framework for it.
* Long-term goal is automation and bridging, moving and wrapping assets.
* Commercial tool that allows people to migrate to Cardano ecosystem, and there is a collection of competencies there.
* Huge amount of work is going into Hydra
* High commercial priority. Important that they can offload the traffic onto Hydra.
* You need to segregate the traffic for microtransactions.
* But still a bit of research going on, but converging to a good idea of a “1.0”
* A project by COTI, not technically from IOHK.
* IOHK philosophy is to develop something, open-source it, and let other people develop their own competing implementations of it.
**New light wallet from IOG**
* Very high priority
* Mithril will launch with light wallet, so you get full node security with it
**FUD about increasing block size doesn’t really increase amount of plutus smart contract per block**
* Charles says this is a lie. If you increase the amount of storage a block has, you can of course increase the amount of scripts in that block. There are some limitations about amount of computation per block, but it’s a very complex situation. For what it is worth, IOHK wrote a blog post about this: https://iohk.io/en/blog/posts/2021/09/10/concurrency-and-all-that-cardano-smart-contracts-and-the-eutxo-model/.
* Seems like Charles big vision here is that the eUTXO model is massively parallelizable because there will be a massive amount of outsourcable computation: “3-5 years into the future 99% of computing will be done off-chain, and checked with proofs on chain.”
* The scaling model: “As long as you have a proof that the out-sourcable computation was done correctly, that’s all that matters and that’s what checked on chain. You have a scarce resource on-chain, and unlimited, distributed resources off-chain. That’s the model that makes sense.”
* “You’re boiling the ocean if you are chasing global state.”
**How many transactions per second**
* Average transaction (subjective what this means) of 50-100 per second for an average crypto you are doing okay for daily volume. Nice to get core chain to 500-1000 TPS.
* Getting beyond 500-1000 for any sharded architecture is not going to happen. 50K TPS is centralizing or batching/rolling-up, effectively doing Layer Two (which is the spirit of Hydra).
* Charles doesn’t think there is a TPS problem. Or rather it’s the wrong question, Charles thinks in terms of “what is the off-chain, what is the on-chain?” and how do you check correctness.
* Charles thinks TPS is a useless in practice and is just a marketing metric. A dump-truck has 1000 horsepower, but it’s completely different than a coating stick (not sure about this transcription).
**Paper wallet with staking capability**
* Charles is very big on this one, it’s a priority for him.
**IOHK is not the ecosystem**
* IOHK is independent from projects like Sundae Swap. Charles does not know the deadlines of all of these various projects. I guess he is getting flooded with these types of questions.
* Charles reiterates there will only ever be 45 billion ADA. Does not believe in modifying the monetary policy. No one can change it.
Charles references when Stellar burned their reserve supply and it didn’t do anything for the underlying price.
**Plutus Dev Accreditation System**
* Thinking about developing some sort of accreditation system
* Hired 8 companies to just write a bunch of code for them. They also viewed these companies as training the trainers.
* Continue to grow Plutus Pioneers program
**Can hydra heads/channels talk with each other?**
* Does it make sense to have everything go through the main chain or to have a synchronized Layer 2 setup? Charles believes in synchronized Layer 2 with Hydra.