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A MidSummer Night’s Update

July 18, 2018

Summer is flying by, or maybe it just seems that way at Fathom!
Here are some of the things we’ve been up to in the first half of July.


an open community exploring new futures for learning

We’ve been iterating on the landing page, which introduces the community and invites proposals for learning adventures. We’ve also been refining the core protocol and preparing other foundational elements that will support the playground’s launch. More news coming soon!


a decentralized system of peer assessment

The assess app is moving towards readiness for real people to start using! We’ve been refactoring all the views in the UI to match our new wireframes, using styled-components and tachyons. We did another refactor of assessment loading. And we’ve been working on ways to handle concepts – their creation, definition, display, and management. This includes ways to view concepts, via a basic concept browser, and a means of storing concept descriptions with ipfs.


a library for interacting with social data around ethereum identities

We completed a stretch of work focused on composing and styling claims for the user in a more meaningful, readable form. This involved thinking through user flows and composing different types of views for individual claims. The resulting UI starts with a gallery-type overview of all of a user’s claims, rendered as claim cards; any of them can be clicked on to bring up a detail view of the individual claim; from there the user can toggle to another view of the raw json source data for that claim. You can check out the milestone for this work here, and our retrospective here.

For our next phase, we’re adding another dimension to bridger – a public profile! Each user will have a public-facing profile, an interface for bundling together any of their claims they want to share with others. To secure, store, and broadcast these profiles around ethereum addresses, we’re changing our distributed backend from one currently using ipfs to a new architecture that’s based on dat and hyperdb. You can follow follow our work in this milestone.

Other Fathomables:

A shoutout to Alan Lu, whose stellar tutorial was a great resource on the road to implementing proxy-contracts in the Fathom-App. His work helped turn this rather complicated endeavor into a very pleasant learning experience. And as a consequence we reduced the cost of creating concepts by a factor of 10, and the costs to create an assessment by a factor of 5 (down to 12 and 20 cents, respectively).