SPOt-light #002 [AHOLY]

Todays session is with Johann, SPO of ADAHolycs [AHOLY]. He was the first responder after Stefano, the founder, pitched the idea. Let’s dive into it.

1. Hello Johann, tell us a little bit about yourself, what are your areas of expertise? (Tech, finance, other), how did you learn about Cardano and what led you to adopt the role you currently play in the ecosystem?

A: Areas of expertise:
I hold a PhD in theoretical physics and I am a researcher in the field of high energy physics. My job gives me the opportunity to meet people from different cultures, different continents and discuss and work on state of the art problems. This includes programming like Haskell (Which I learned from an IOHK member during his research career) or C++ or more sophisticated tools for Mathematics. My biggest projects are written to be executed on the super computers. Which indirectly leads to me being very familiar with running a server.

2. So from getting to know Cardano, you now are a core part of it, or as most SPO’s do, trying hard to solidify that role. How is that been going, walk us through the process if you will.

A: I started to pay attention more to the Cardano blockchain after the news that one can participate in the Proof of Stake protocol. I slowly started to do the research until finally in August I made up my mind to start a stake pool. Because of the lock down and the Christmas holidays in Europe I got plenty of time to realize the idea of launching the stake pool. My idea is to go with the waves. I have set up a pool which is conceptually easy to adopt with the flow. As long as the stake stays low my (32 GB RAM + UPS) pool guarantees to simply secure the network.
With increasing stake there is an increasing responsibility which leads to the following road map:

– Spread the relays across the homes of my friends.
– Put a passive node on a data center, which will start operating as a block producing node in case something odd happens

3. Were there any problems, obstacles to overcome on the way, and if yes, how did you tackle them, what resources did you use?

A: I am allergic to any kind of social media, so it was a real obstacle to install all this centralized tools. I gave it a try before but these social media is polarizing the community. But I think we have to go with the devil at least until we are able to trick him. Thus my first contact was not a YouTube video by another SPO promoting their pool, but the Cardano forum, where I keep actively contribute daily. The next step was joining the official telegram group to get in direct contact with awesome people. These two sources were good enough to start with setting up a stake pool. I have to acknowledge the Cardano community for being very helpful. I started with a Testnet pool which I will keep on running. That way I produced 2648 blocks on the Testnet already, performed all kinds of funny stake pool operations before applying them to the Mainnet for the real deal. One major resource I used to setup my pool the very first time was this guide:

4. So, the F2LB Initiative, its fairly new, can you tell us a little bit about it, what is its purpose and what can people do to help?

A: This initiative was launched by Stefano on the Cardano Forum. Since I am lurking there I was happy to see another topic of rich interest to me and immediately started to communicate the possibilities this initiative has. My understanding is that the delegates acknowledge pools when they have already produced blocks. Thus the idea is to help all SPO’s who participate to produce their very first block. This is the initial idea. The only difference of pool producing 1 block now is the stake. We welcome everyone who wants to ride this new wave to promote pools. You do not need to own or operate a stake pool to participate, just the passion for Cardano and a Staking wallet like Daedalus or Yoroi. Since there are no smart contracts available on the Cardano blockchain yet, we have another efficient way of participating in this initiative. We get informed via e-mail to which ticker to delegate the next epoch. Anyone who helps needs to participate and redelegate every 10 days. Which allows for all ‘just stake holders’ indirectly to be part in enforcing decentralization. All this without hurting your pseudonymous identity.

5. What is the current state of your Pool, how is it setup and are there any developments in the near future? If its a Bare metal server, include a picture, were curious how you roll!

A: I run two ‘bare metal’ pools for now; one Testnet and one Mainnet pool. The Mainnet pool is designed to produce blocks depending on the stake delegated to it. The road map is to put a redundant copy of the block producing node on the data center by the end of August or if a stake of 1 million is reached. Additional relays are launched at my friends places who live in different countries. I plan to go with 2 additional relays in Europe first, namely Sweden and Switzerland. I would like to pay them by means of ADA rewards. Thus I am waiting for a million stake. Maybe one of them decides to support ADAholycs ( already before that.

6. How much stake do you have delegated it and when can you be expected to receive the boost from F2LB? More important, what are your efforts now to make sure you attract delegates yourself?

A: I received a whopping stake of ~350k. 175 k stemming from other SPO’s and 175 k stemming from someone who is just a stake holder. I will launch promotions on Reddit. Since the delegates might be worried risking their rewards I promise to share my stakepool operator rewards with the delegates for another 8 epochs as of the time of writing.

7. What can people do when they don’t operate a pool, but do have some ADA in their portfolio’s, can you give some general recommendations? Do’s and don’ts so to speak.

A: Go for a hardware wallet. Leave the exchanges! Do NOT trust ANY giveaways. Do not give up your pseudonymous identity and mostly stake with SPO’s who are dedicated and passionate to maintain the stake pool.

8. We see a lot of Big Pool operators successfully managing multiple pools. It seems like a good idea from where most people stand. How do you feel about this and how does it affect the purpose of Cardano?

A: I think Cardano does benefit from the big pools. These big pools do attract many new delegates to leave the exchanges and stack with the Cardano stake pools. I believe that once the delegates mature they will start to care about the small stake pools. All we have to do is just educate, evolve, improve and discuss. Nothing is for free.

9. Why should people delegate their ADA to your pool, or what benefit do they get from supporting this initiative?

A: We are all early adopters. I believe the delegates will enjoy staking with ADAholycs, a pool which has a clear road map. The F2LB initiative helps to attract delegates for pools like mine. The pools joining the F2LB initiative are the ones who believe in the future of Cardano and help to build it.

10. Any final thoughts?

A: A blockchain which is an offspring of Bitcoin and Ethereum is about to triumph over all other blockchain technologies! I am very happy to be part of it before we hit the main stream. In general speaking the Cardano blockchain is built on the idea of Proof of Stake which by itself is driven by greed. Greed is commonly referred to as something negative. The goal of a stake pool operator at the time of writing is to tame the greed. The idea behind it is Game Theory. I am happy to discuss this so hit me up on the Cardano forum, F2LB discord or just stake and stay together!

Leave a Reply