AMA with Raymond Laracuenta, Co-founder of WeAct

Daniel James
Daniel James
AMA with Raymond Laracuenta, Co-founder of WeAct
Table of Contents
Table of Contents

Our community manager, Moses, sat down for an AMA with Raymond from WeAct, where he posed questions from our editorial team and the community at large.

Official Channels: Website | Twitter | Instagram | Facebook

Here's what was discussed:

AMA

Moses ∞ICP:

We are happy to have you with us today in this AMA to learn more about your project; thank you so much for coming, and you are again welcome to the Dfinity Community👍 please introduce yourself to the community.

Raymond Laracuenta

Sure. I am Ray Laracuenta, the CEO and Cofonder of Oblivion Software, makers of WeAct.chat

The company is two and a half years old and is about ten people in size.

We focus on collaboration software development

Moses ∞ICP

Excellent regarding oblivion software 🤔🤔we will come to this later

Raymond Laracuenta

Okay

Moses ∞ICP

Would you mind explaining to the Dfinity community what Weact or WeActivism is all about?

Raymond Laracuenta

WeActivism is the social handle for WeAct.

WeAct is the application we have built for grassroots activism and management of volunteer or common interest groups.

Moses ∞ICP

What attracted you initially to Blockchain?

Raymond Laracuenta

We have been looking at Blockchain for several years because of its security, ability to decentralized platforms, and give community members the ability to govern and even own their platforms.

In collaboration (social and activism), we felt it was essential to provide a space where governance and freedom of expression were at the center of the design.

I believe Dfinity will accelerate the adoption of Blockchain because of its design.

Moses ∞ ICP

This comment brings me to my next question: Why did you decide to build on the Internet Computer of all the platforms you could have chosen?

Raymond Laracuenta

When  we discussed WeAct with the team at Dfinity, I said the following "We are going with Dfinity because it was the first blockchain that would provide a seamless experience to Web 2.0 users and an approachable development platform for developers."

So all the power of the platform is below the surface and does not impact the user experience.

If they want to see wallets, fine, that also works if they never want to, both with wallets.

Moses ∞ICP

Exactly brother. You are correct Dfinity is the only Blockchain doing so many outstanding kinds of stuff now more than any other blockchain platform out there.

Raymond Laracuenta

This way, Dfinity should be able to rapidly drive mainstream adoption because the applications will scale and look normal.

Moses ∞ICP

Sure, brother adoption is looking likely to explode with Dfinity

Raymond Laracuenta

We did look at other platforms, but Dfinity's roadmap aligned with what we wanted to do. Plus, they are very socially minded.

Moses ∞ICP

What makes your WeActivism marketable, and what will ensure its long-term success?

Raymond Laracuenta

WeAct is valuable, and we think it compelling because it is an all-in-one solution.

It combines chat, video calls, task & event management into one

Plus, it can communicate with Slack, Telegram, Whatsapp, and Discord to build application bridges between WeAct and all those chat platforms.

WeAct becomes the central communications hub of  organizations or groups

It will also be one of the first hybrid blockchain apps on the market

WeAct-ICP is 75% on-chain and 25% in the cloud.  The cloud portion is chat (for now).

As you know, Blockchain has a bit of latency with real-time chat

Moses ∞ICP

There are so many features that people are still not aware of in Weact, brother.

Raymond Laracuenta

So for the initial release, we are giving users real-time chat speed

But with all their information, tasks, events, etc. stored in the chain

Moses ∞ICP

Amazing 💪

Raymond Laracuenta

Yeah, we will be posting a road map on our site for WeAct-ICP soon

But if you read the features on the web 2.0 version, they will all migrate to ICP

Plus, because of how we design chat, you can communicate between groups using federation

Moses ∞ ICP

So when will this migration happen?

Raymond Laracuenta

So a climate group in London (say Extinction Rebellion) can work directly with another group in Brussels. And they can easily find each other on WeAct because of the design.

Moses ∞ICP

Okay, groups in the app can communicate with each other; that's nice

Wow 👍

Raymond Laracuenta

Groups are listed as thumbnails and are searchable like their own mini internet.

Think of each WeAct group as servers on the web.  You type a search term and find groups.

No more asking people for Discord URLs or going to websites to see if a group has a Slack space or Telegram channel.

While those products are great, we wanted something more seamless

Moses ∞ICP

Okay, that's cool, Brother

What challenges have you faced while building your company?

Raymond Laracuenta

We have been lucky to be able to bootstrap to this point. So we can move freely and experiment.

That said, I think, like most start-ups finding a good developer talent has been challenging.

We have a great team, but it took a while to find everyone.

And of course, in start-ups raising capital is always on the horizon, and that process can be very time-consuming.

Moses ∞ICP

Getting the best hands to work with is always a difficult task brother

Raymond Laracuenta

The other is finding a message or voice that is unique

Agreed, and in the ICP space, it can be even harder

It is very new to many and takes time to master.

So we all are learning together.

Moses ∞ICP

Exactly 👍 because ICP is a new blockchain and not many know or understand it yet

Raymond Laracuenta

In fact, for us, we have worked with the CTO of Canistore Jon Green, Steven over at Toniq, and Jesse, now the leader of Portal.

They have all coded for us and been great about getting WeAct-ICP going

It is a robust & close-knit community

We also get input from Hazel from time to time

Moses ∞ICP

This comment brings me to my next question: Do you have any plans to collaborate with other projects building on the Internet Computer?

Raymond Laracuenta

If you are familiar with these developers

Yes

We will use Toniq's wallet, token and NFT tech, which are headless for WeAct ICP.

On the IC, WeAct will have a governance token and accept in-app fundraising/donations.

It will have its economy and evolve into a DAO

Moses ∞ICP

Is there a plan to tokenize WeActivism? Do you have any token sales planned for the future? If so, when? Can you give details?

Raymond Laracuenta

We will need wallets, tokens, and NFT tech for that

Yes, we are tokenizing WeAct ICP

Our white paper is 65% done, and the token distribution model is pretty set.

We will do a raise similar to Canistore in the structure; at least, that is how it is looking.

Moses ∞ICP

When will the white paper be ready?

Raymond Laracuenta

The raw version will be done in a few weeks.  Then we need to add visuals, design work, etc., to make it attractive.  :)

It will make the rounds with 5-6 investors who have asked us for this document for months in September.

Moses ∞ICP

Tell us about the team

Raymond Laracuenta

Leigh and I are analysts (current and former) from Gartner Inc

I spent over 20 years there as a VP Research Director and General Manager

My coverage area was in collaboration software design and implementation

Leigh focused on team dynamics, team culture, and the like

He is formerly from Cap Gemini, the consulting firm and an Enterprise Architect

Ben is a web and mobile developer who is a quick study on all languages

The broader team is made up of Flutter, Motoko, and Python developers

Several marketing people

And we have a team of 9 blog writers who do articles for us

Everyone is listed on the team page on our website with links to their LinkedIn profiles

I am the Product design and UI/UX, person

So I take user feedback and user research to develop the functions and experience.

Moses ∞ICP

We have a few fantastic questions from our Twitter Community. There are many, but we will choose a few for you to answer here after the AMA; in the meantime, you can slide into our Twitter page to answer a few of them too.

Raymond Laracuenta

The blog part is important because we also write about volunteerism and social cause issues.

Moses ∞ICP

One of the problems of the all-in-one platform is it's usually bulky and slow while trying to add too many functions in one. How do you make your platform simple and easy to use while still keeping the effectiveness of the main features?

By @HoangTrongNgh18

Raymond Laracuenta

Great question

We keep it lightweight by keeping the functionality approachable and straightforward.

For volunteer groups, they don't need Jira or Monday for project mgt

Or complex event management tools etc

So the key to all-in on is to keep the functions lightweight to start

And only add features when there is a clear need.

So we work hard to keep the screens simple to fill out

For many, that is initially a shock because they are so used to screens filled to all four corners with buttons, boxes, and tabs

So best of breed apps get bloated in their own right

We WeAct we will strive to keep things down to earth and approachable

Moses ∞ICP

What is the most significant difference between WeActivism and traditional social apps like Facebook and Twitter, and what are the critical features of WeActivism?

By @huynhchithong

Raymond Laracuenta

WeAct is designed for work. To get things done.  To coordinate every specific workflow and action.

Facebook, Twitter, etc., are suitable for general awareness, not so much execution.

They are also designed to distract and redirect your focus.

A quick pop into Twitter can turn into 2 hrs of timeline reading and posting.

They are designed to do that

So messages get lost, as does time.

Our features are designed to move you from talking to doing is the shortest distance possible.

Conversations can spawn tasks.

Tasks can spawn linked chat rooms.

We also will be adding Agile Meeting Management.

Where the UI leads the team from brainstorming to discussing projects all in one workflow

Moses ∞ICP

Why would activists switch to WeAct when we've previously seen grassroots activism become enormously magnified via various mainstream messaging applications or social networks, even having substantial national/international impacts?

By @Greyhair_08

Raymond Laracuenta

Good questions

I think the answer to that is context.

Mainstream messaging apps are good at chatting but not knowledge management.

Have you tried to find things on active chat channels?

So while you can communicate on chat apps, the transfer of knowledge, especially to new members, is sometimes flawed.

With social causes, you want depth of knowledge to capture & share best practices in a hub and across hubs.

Moses ∞ICP

What Will WeActivism implement apart from blockchain tokenization, a greater range of new features, and the use of Artificial Intelligence to make the edition and publication of content more didactic? or will it be the same as those used in conventional ones?

By @DngGiaPhong2

Raymond Laracuenta

Mainstream social chat apps are not wired for that use case.  Their goal is to get as many daily active users (DAUs) as they can.

They are not as focused on specific use cases, so they are generalized, sometimes too much

Moses ∞ ICP

**The floor is open now guys drop your question to Raymond**

🔥🔥tiger🔥🔥

Where does the project name come from? What does it mean for you, and why did you choose that name for your project?

Raymond Laracuenta

Tokenization for WeAct will open up many unique ICP features

AI/ML to match people's skills with projects or groups

AI tools that will help you chose groups that align with your style & focus

🔥🔥tiger🔥🔥]

The bear market will not be easy for a new project to survive. We have seen so many projects failed to survive in the bear market. Have you thought about this? What are the plans for surviving the bear market?

Raymond Laracuenta

The bear market as in crypto or the economy?

The lovely and scary part of activism is the causes are all in some form of high pressure or crisis state.

Take climate, for instance. Climate groups have been fighting for remediation for 40 years, and the climate numbers are all pretty bad.

So we can help them raise the bar on their execution ability when it comes to changing laws and the behavior of 100s of millions of people.

Which is need to combat climate change

So we think our focus will insulate us to a degree

Dfinity also indexes the cost of IC cycles, so price swings in ICP are less impactful

Again the cool thing about Dfinity tech it's not 100% tied to ICP coin pricing

Karma ∞

When are you having your token sale?

Raymond Laracuenta

Hopefully in Q4

It will depend on legal review and building up a pre-sale investor interest.

WeAct-ICP will be open to the community in late September

Assuming we don't hit any technical issues or bugs

It will run on IOS, Android, and a browser all at the same time

And we are using a neat Single Sign-On approach that removes the need for a Yubikey

And the need to authorize every device and browser you use

Our SSO generates a secure token to get you an Internet ID if you don't have one and logs you in

If you have an Internet ID, you log in with that

You will also be able to log in with your Google or Apple IDs if you prefer

Moses ∞ICP

So you mean to say internet identity will work fine without the need for a Yubikey?

Raymond Laracuenta

Yep

We designed something with the team over at Torus with input from Toniq

We are working with Toniq on their use of Torus

We think the SSO experience will open Dfinity to even more users

Who have not idea what a Yubikey is

And I don't want to, lol

Also, in Q4, we will be putting out a new UI for WeAct, which will blow people away - we hope.

Very modern with a nordic vibe :)

If you are interested in being an early WeAct-ICP tester, fill out the information form (Contact Us)

And in the meantime, download the current client to kick the tires

We can use the feedback

Create some groups, play around with them and look for me there

I can help you figure things out

Moses ∞ICP

Before you go, can you drop your website and all social media handles?

Raymond Laracuenta

Sure

weact. chat

@rlaracue on all social platforms

@weactivism on all social

We are also on Tik Tok and Snapchat

Moses ∞ICP

Great 👍

Raymond Laracuenta

You are welcome, and please (everyone) feel free to reach out to me directly at any time.

I am happy to answer more questions and take your design input

Remember WeAct will become a DAO, and you guys may be owning and running it someday

Moses ∞ICP

Amazing 👍love that

Raymond Laracuenta

If you want, we can also connect this TG group to WeAct

It would be fun for you to see how it works

people can chat with each other from either platform in a shared room

on WeAct

Moses ∞ICP

Wow, that will be nice to have Dfinity Community on weact why not

Raymond Laracuenta

We can chat about this offline

But yeah, it is pretty cool to experience it

Moses ∞ICP

Yes, brother, I will get to you after the AMA

Raymond Laracuenta

Okay

Moses ∞ICP

Thanks once again for your time, brother 👍

Raymond Laracuenta

Well, thank you so much for your thoughtful questions

I value them all

You are most welcome!

Moses ∞ICP

It is our pleasure, brother 👍 thanks, bye

Raymond Laracuenta

Bye!

Reach Raymond here:

Twitter


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