Getting to grips with Gems Alpha

Gems.org  (see our intro here) have released their alpha product to the World and can be accessed here http://portal.gems.org/login.

First things first you will need Metamask installed. Then as this is a test implementation link your Metamask to the Ropsten test network – that’s where your sample earnings will be stored.

First page is pretty simple: a slide show of 3 slides telling you about Gems and a Start button:

Click “Start” and it will tell you to log in with Metamask, so click the Metamask icon on the browser tool bar  and click “Sign” and you’ll be logged in and shown a list of sample tasks.

Click “Join” and you will be presented with a maths problem and a warning that no real Gems will be earned  (mind you if I could something for the sample tasks I’d be here all day ☺). When I first tried this I got an error at this point, told them and it was fixed very quickly – great response!

Once in you are assigned your first task – mine was calculate 0 – 4 (is this different for everyone?)

 Once you have you submitted the answer the Total Pending increments and once validated you get a the opportunity to undertake another task.

This is a very clean implementation and if they can keep the simplicity it will be an amazing application. They obviously have a very clear vision of where they want this to go, hopefully it doesn’t get cloudy. Sometimes you use an application and even in the early stages it just feels well constructed and this is the case here. From one dev to those on the Gem team well done!

It will be great to see some samples of more complex tasks. I look forward to following this project.

Gem Alpha: http://portal.gems.org/

Gems website: https://gems.org/

The articles on this site are opinions and for information purposes only.  It is not intended to be investment advice.  Seek a duly licensed professional for investment advice.

© copyright 2018 Russell Weetch

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Mechanical Turk and the Blockchain

The original Mechanical Turk was a fake chess playing automaton from the 18th century – a mechanical illusion that allowed a chess master to hide inside the machine1. The term has more lately come to mean a service that can be used to place small tasks which require human intelligence (a major use is for enriching AI data, or in China for internet censorship) – a market of employers and providers (Turkers). Amazon provide such as crowd sourcing market place through the AWS service ‘Amazon Mechanical Turkas do others such as CrowdSource and RapidWorkers3.

The market is there – a 2015 World Bank Report4 estimated that there were 500,000 workers registered with Amazon Mechanical Turk and according to Alexa.com4 the site had 750,000 unique visitors in December 2015.

One issue centres around fees – validated work costs a lot for the employer and the worker gets very little. The enabling sites charge fees of up to 40% (looking at the Amazon site, it seems a nightmare to work out5);

Secondly, validation of work can be difficult. One method is to recruit 5-15 workers for each task – a very expensive overhead.

Another issue is that the pool of labour is constrained by a huge number of people not having access to a bank account.

Gems is a new project from Rory and Kieran O’Reilly looking to improve the whole process using the Ethereum blockchain. The aim is to provide a protocol for contracting workers to perform micro tasks and a mechanism to prove validity of the work do based on a solid economic supply and demand model with no central fees.

As a protocol Gems provides the basis for others to develop dApps to run on it – that makes it a highly extensible platform.

Overall the aims of the project are:

1. Removing the middleman taking a large fee
2. Verifying accuracy of results from crowdsourced tasks
3. Supplying and building reusable interfaces
4. Removing the need for existing banking infrastructure
5. Properly incentivising and disincentivising miners and requesters

 This is a project backed by a very strong set of advisors: Biz Stone (Twitter, Medium), Joey Krug (Pantera), Ben Maurer (reCaptcha), Luis Cuende (Aragon), Joe Urgo (district0x) …. wow!

This is one to watch.
Gems.org

The articles on this site are opinions and for information purposes only.  It is not intended to be investment advice.  Seek a duly licensed professional for investment advice.

© copyright 2018 Russell Weetch

1 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Turk

2 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amazon_Mechanical_Turk

3 http://moneypantry.com/amazon-mechanical-turk-crowdsourcing-alternatives/

4 http://www.pewinternet.org/2016/07/11/the-size-of-the-mechanical-turk-marketplace/

5 https://requester.mturk.com/pricing