Interview With Eduard Tur, COO At Gotaki About A Decentralized Mapping System
Interview with Eduard Tur about the Gotaki Maps project devoted to the development of mapping solutions based on blockchain technology. Blockspoint finds out why the world needs alternative mapping systems.
How did you come up with the idea of building maps on blockchain?
The initial reason for creating Gotaki was the way how information is handled on the Internet. It is as crazy as you have heard. I’m talking about big enterprises and huge conglomerates like Google lurking and saving all their data about users. One of the most sensitive pieces of data they can find is your geolocation, and we wanted to make sure that this information and any personal information is not collected so users can feel more safe and secure. At the same time, the existing mapping systems are not user-friendly. There is not enough information about objects of reference and places, so our goal is to create additional, more detailed layers for open street maps.
Do you think your product will become popular?
We’ve realized that the market needs our product. People want to have a high-quality alternative. We’ve been demonstrating our technologies at different conferences, and big tech companies have asked if they could use our maps, which is amazing. Initially, we were surprised by the level of interest in our product. But the companies explained that Google maps and MapBox have been leaders in this sphere for almost 10-15 years. The quasi-monopoly they’ve established has made it difficult to create desirable partnerships because the companies are forced to provide full information about users and so on. It’s become a sort of data mafia! The industry leaders charge million dollars per day. Furthermore, as the Google Maps service keeps growing, the speed of mapping is getting worse and worse. Google is now struggling to operate all the API requests. Consequently, we decided to use our core technology and sell it as the B2B solution. We do not want to be another Google Maps − we want to create something different, something bigger, better and much more useful!
What kind of technologies do you use?
We use Plasma blockchain, a new system designed by Vitalik Buterin. It has already got a strong core of supporters in the Ethereum community, so it was easy for us to find like-minded people. Plasma is basically the concept of setting a child chain through smart-contracts. All transactions there are recorded periodically so you do not have to spend your computing power all the time. It allows the system to scale much faster. We’ve also delegated the Proof-of-Stake algorithm, which means that anyone who has a token can set up servers, nodes, or provide data to the system. The more you contribute, the more you get. You receive profit everytime people use your server or data.
What kind of information do you provide on your maps?
Our maps are oriented to consumers. It means that a user can find any service there − car rentals, hostels, restaurants, simple directions, traffic data and anything you may need. All our information will be detailed and validated. We want to develop multi-layered maps so that different companies can add specific routes or points. For example, departments of tourism can add their vision of tourist spots, which would help to develop and promote the city.
Do you have a client base?
We already have a centralized tourist travel platform at gotaki.com with proven success and a large clientele. Now we are working on the gotakimaps.com website, which is a decentralized service. It will be a service for other businesses, and we have plans to launch the beta version of our product in early 2019. In short, we are an existing business and have a strong base of clients.
Are you going to carry out an ICO to promote your project?
We are planning it at the moment, and we have issued a security token. All ICO processes are regulated by a part of our team that is based in Switzerland.
How will you monetize your business?
There will be a fixed price for each API request any company can do. The use of maps will be free for users. We want to develop maps like Waze so that a consumer got an ability to share information about roads, traffic, places and other interesting details. Users will receive tokens for data contribution. Companies and enterprises will have to pay for the use of maps, buy tokens or contribute with nodes or servers. We have a lot of ideas and are open to collaborations.