ARK is proud to announce our newest developer incentive program, ARK Grants. Replacing our current ‘Tier 0’ Program, ARK Grants will allow our growing community of developers to apply for funding towards ARK based Proofs of Concept, Desktop Wallet plugins, and full production-ready applications. To kick things off, 1 million ARK has been seeded into the program from our ARK Shield development fund.
Learn more about the ARK Grants program on our website: https://ark.io/grants
ARK has always placed a large focus on our community of developers. From our Development and Security Bounties to our current Tier 0 program, we have a wide range of opportunities for developers to get involved in the community and get paid to contribute to ARK. The ARK Grants program is an expansion and refinement of our current offerings and will replace the Tier 0 program with a more robust and refined structure as well as a war chest of funds to show our dedication to our community and the ARK Ecosystem.
Applicable Project Types
The ARK Grants program has been seeded with 1 million ARK tokens to spur development by the community in the following areas:
- Proofs-of-Concept. According to an Entrepreneur.com contributing article, a Proof of Concept (POC) is a ‘small exercise to test the design idea or assumption’. When diving deeper into new technologies and frameworks, these POCs serve a valuable purpose in educating developers through concrete examples. Developers who create and study POCs get a better idea of how to express their own abstract concepts programmatically. An example of a POC funded by ARK Grants is the recently released ARK Messenger, a fully autonomous and secure chat service.
- ARK Desktop Wallet Plugins. The ARK Desktop Wallet was recently upgraded with a plugin manager system. This manager builds on existing features by adding a more intuitive interface, allowing users to install, use, and update plugins. This is similar to how Google Chrome Extensions work. Ideas for plugins that improve the user experience or add new functionalities can be funded by the ARK Grants program. Interestingly enough, the Plugin Manager itself is an example of a project funded by ARK Grants!
- Production Ready Solutions. The ARK Grants program can also be used to fund or help fund full-fledged blockchain solutions that utilize ARK technology. These projects would be complete and deployed for use with either the ARK Public Network or an ARK bridgechain. They would aim to gather real users and truly show ARK technology in action. The scope and purpose of such projects can vary widely. We are looking for real use cases to shine using the ARK technology stack. If you would like to tackle a use case, consider putting together a proposal. One example of a production-ready solution is ARKTippr Tip Bot, which was initially developed by Delegate ‘Cryptology’ as a community service. Delegate Cryptology then utilized the ARK Grants program to enhance the product, opening it up to ARK bridgechains, converting the codebase to TypeScript, and enabling functionality for Twitter (initially the tip bot worked for Reddit only). ARKTippr functions very well today and is used regularly.
- Custom Project Ideas. The scope of projects that could be considered by the ARK Grants program doesn’t end with these three types. If you have an idea that doesn’t necessarily fit here, we still welcome a proposal submission. It may even include ARK Core plugins that enhance the Core itself.
It should be noted that the ARK Grants program is designed specifically for technology development. This means that only proposals involving technical deployments and usage of ARK technology stack will be considered.
Technologies & Frameworks
Developers who have an approved project in the ARK Grants program should follow best practices as established by the ARK development team. Here’s a list of our preferences (let’s call them strong preferences):
- Typescript is the preferred language if applicable.
- Utilize ARK Smart Transactions, which is the process of using the Generic Transaction Interface and Core plugins to create application logic as needed.
- The vendorField, AKA SmartBridge field, should be avoided for use in development for most cases. Instead, focus on using new Smart Transactions and custom bridgechains.
- Mobile Development should be done with Ionic or Angular.
- Some of our favorite technologies include NodeJS, VueJS, TailwindCSS, Laravel, and Electron.
For other technology considerations, please get approval before development starts.
Proposal Submission Process
Submitting a proposal to the ARK Grants program is simple. Let’s cover the steps below:
- Applicant Information. The ARK Grants program is managed by ARK.io, which is a registered business entity in France under the name ARK ECOSYSTEM, SCIC. As such, proper identity information and invoicing is a part of the process of utilizing the program. Applicants will submit an application template with information such as full name and email address, along with contact methods (Slack and/or Discord handle, GitHub information).
- Project Description and Architecture. Applicants will describe the project in a few paragraphs and include information on the architecture of the project such as frameworks, languages and custom transaction types using ARK Logic.
- Milestones. Applicants will provide a list of milestones and attach level of effort to each. Aside from applicant-provided milestones, there are two fixed milestones at the end of the list which refer to documentation and final review.
- Proposal Review & Approval. The ARK Team will assess the application and make a decision on whether to issue a grant for the project. After that, the only remaining task is to build! 70% of the approved funding for the project will be divided among the project milestones, and the remaining 30% will be released upon completion of the final review milestone.
Other Ways to Earn
The ARK Grants program is not the only way to earn ARK. There are other ways developers can get their hands on ARK tokens. Here’s a brief summary of some of the ways developers can earn ARK:
- ARK Bounty and Security program. In an open-source project such as ARK, advancing the codebase to the next level requires help from the wider community. With our Development and Security Bounty Program anyone can participate and earn rewards for contributions in ARK. The bounty program utilizes GitHub to track and manage activity, and bounties are paid out to community developers every month. Whether you solve 1 GitHub issue or 100, bounties are available. We also award ARK for reporting security vulnerabilities. Learn more at Bounty.ARK.io.
- Contests and Competitions. ARK holds contests and competitions for both developers and non-developers. Stay tuned on our Twitter, Reddit, YouTube, and this blog for updates. One example is a recently run wallet skin contest. Another contest is in the works, so be prepared!
- Forging Delegate Node. The ARK Public Network runs as a Delegated Proof-of-Stake blockchain, and some delegates are developers who use forging rewards from the network to do ongoing development work, implementing their own ideas. Launch a node, draft a proposal for the community, and campaign for votes. You could forge ARK that contributes to your development ideas and efforts. Learn more on our website’s delegate page and join the community to ask about becoming a delegate in the Slack.ARK.io #delegate channel. Many delegates are already there who can help with questions.
- ARK Community Fund. This is a community-operated fund of ARK that is managed by five community-elected board members who cycle out every six months. Something of note is that the ACF considers not only development-based proposals, but also other types which may include outreach initiatives, sponsorships, content creation, and more. ARK is not affiliated with the ACF. Learn more at *ARKCommunity.Fund.
A 1 Million ARK Grant Pool Awaits!
With the ARK Grants program now launched, we’re ready for you to take advantage of this opportunity to dive into Blockchain while earning cryptocurrency for doing so. But hurry, because if you’re reading this, that means someone else is, too. Put your creativity to the test, and let us know your best ideas on how you’d like to utilize the ARK Grants program. We promise we won’t steal them! Let’s unlock the awesome potential of blockchain-powered ideas together.
The next step for submitting an application lies here: https://ark.io/grants