I was granted the opportunity by the Uro Foundation to conduct an interview with them about Uro, their future plans, etc. As there are a lot of people with questions, I opened up the interview to the public, and asked people to send in their questions. This is an interview where the community asks the hard questions and sees them answered.
1: What are the current ongoing plans for the evolving development and implementation of URO?
a. NURO: Mobile wallet for all platforms (iOS, Android, Windows Phone, etc…) made with Intel XDK and BlockCypher. First screenshots were shown about two weeks ago.
b. Talks with additional merchants at the importer, seller and wholesale levels are ongoing and have been occurring weekly since the launch of Urocoin.
c. Prypto Cards campaign on StartJOIN is ongoing and gaining support from the public. Prypto brings easy to use “paper wallets,” which can greatly assist adoption by newcomers from outside the cryptocurrency community.
2 : Why would urea producers use a public crypto instead of a private crypto only for them? It seems hard to believe the producers will bind to the price set by day traders….
The Uro Foundation’s implementation of Uro as an open platform, open source blockchain currency is a reflection of the purpose of Uro: to be the most widely adopted token for urea trading internationally. The Foundation continues to develop an ever-expanding infrastructure around Uro so that this long-term goal is achieved. URO is also a store of value, so it can be freely exchanged with other currencies and spent without restriction. In the future, more traditional merchants will start accepting URO as a currency via payment processors or direct Uro network integration.
A “private crypto,” if such a thing is even possible, would not benefit from the vast international exchange infrastructure that is both existing and being developed by numerous companies worldwide. Additionally, such a currency would be very hard to maintain and secure, as there will not be a decentralized group of miners to perform this task.
3 : What do you see as the main challenges to adoption? (By this, I mean plans for getting more adoption of the coin by farmers and other urea traders, et cetera)
Educating farmers about the nature of digital currencies and the benefits of Uro has become one of our main areas of focus. For example, we are in the process of producing several videos specifically targeted at farmers that will explain the process of converting fiat to Uro in language that is easy to understand.
4 : How do you think the whole Uro “plan” is going so far?
I think the evolution of the Uro community has been incredible in the short three months that we have been around, and I feel extremely optimistic looking forward to all the great things that are to come.
5 : Will IPL release who won the bids and for what amount of urea they won?
I cannot make any statements on behalf of IPL.
6 : Why does GES does not promote the URO the same way INN coin did. It was published in the major financial journals in the world. That will attract the real commodity traders. Why try to attract the crypto nerds to buy?
We aim to direct our PR resources towards this section of the press in the near future.
7 : Will Nilash Nair do a Q&A or a Reddit AMA if RIVAA wins the contract?
You would have to contact GES via firstname.lastname@example.org regarding this request. I cannot speak on their behalf.
8 : When will we be introduced to other members of URO foundation. (We already know names). What are the responsibilities of each foundation member? Will there be any interview with other foundation members also? What made them join URO foundation?
The website is being revamped to find a place for this information. I would expect it to be done soon.
9: A lot of people still think Uro is a scam. What are your future plans to prove them wrong?
We have already responded to many false accusations and will not waste valuable time responding further. We are here to advance Uro.
10: Did Bohan (true-asset) get fired from GES or why is he only now putting 100% of his time in Uro? you would think such a big project he would be 100% since the start…
I did not get fired. I simply felt that, since I was spending all my time fulfilling Uro Foundation duties, that my official positioning should reflect this.
11: Why are NIERs not educating their existing customers about URO? Thats an assumption: A better question is – Are the efforts by the NIERS to educate their customers benefitting the Uro holders and day traders for the long term as opposed to any expected daily volatility on exchange prices?
Please forward your questions about other companies to them directly. I cannot speak on their behalf.
12: Are NIERs educating their existing customers? And if so, how are they doing so?
Please forward your questions about other companies to them directly. I cannot speak on their behalf.
13: Why is nearly all news regarding you and any of the NIERs non-existent?
We have been the subject of a massive and organized FUD campaign. Once this subsides and more people in the crypto-community see the legitimacy of URO, the story will be taken up by the mainstream press.
14: A ltd company is a legal entity how is it possible for a legal entity to donate millions of dollars to charity per year 5 years before it existed? (In reference to GES first incorporation date in 2008 and bold claims made on GES website about giving $3.4m usd away per year to rural farmers since 2003)
The assumption that GES started in 2008 is incorrect. For more information about the history of GES, please email them at email@example.com. I should not be speaking on their behalf.
15: Normally when a business gives vast sums to charity its for good PR since GES have had no news reports regarding the $3.4 million they give to rural farmers each year what was the business strategy behind this move?
There are many ways to do things and there is not only one “correct” way. If you want a more detailed answer to this question, please contact GES at firstname.lastname@example.org.
16: The news section of GES has 3 pages of stories that should each attract interest from global journalists. Why did the Uro Foundation Twitter account deem it necessary to quote a science blog from 2012 that thanks them for an image they pulled off your site as a source of legitimacy?
In hindsight, that tweet was unnecessary, but since it had no offensive or incorrect content, no removal action was taken.
17: As we all are aware that RIVAA has made a trade with URO for Urea. They are already aware of the whole process and there is no need to convince them any more. So, even if they do not win any tender even in the coming year, they can buy a lot of UROs at a great discount > 95% to 50% now. They can quote tender the next season when IPL issues tenders. Or, they can sell urea to those who won the tender at a lesser price. What could be the reason the URO foundation is not able to convince them to do so?
The question makes an assumption of the business plans for RIVAA and the Uro Foundation for which I am unable to comment. However, if I wanted to buy Uro, I would plan to buy it at the lowest possible cost, with patience.
18: Confidence is key to winning this fight. Why do you let idiots dictate the tone of the discussion? After a bold start, you leave a vacuum for them to fill. Initial confidence built by learning of the players involved in Uro, is easily damaged when these players stay in the background. It is as though they are not really involved or are hedging their bets in case it does not work out. Why is Nilesh not on camera talking about it?
I have maintained a presence on IRC, Twitter and the forums throughout, but I understand your point and we have plans to initiate a full PR campaign.
19: Why does the Uro Foundation need the Prypto Scratch Cards, when their plan is to get the urea to the farmers , and the farmers get it off the resellers?
The StartJOIN campaign to get Prypto for Uro is an initiative of getprypto.com and does not directly involve the Uro Foundation. However, I only see positives with Prypto – its an easy to use and durable “paper wallet.” It is good to have additional, useful infrastructure that can assist in increasing adoption of Uro outside the cryptocurrency community.
20: A question about the thought that went into the emission rate and other parameters. Was a particular model used? What is needed for URO to be sustainable?
1 million units was agreed upon as a manageable amount after months of discussion amongst the companies in conjunction with the Foundation. The release period over 6 months ensures that the currency units would not be held by only a few people that found out about Uro and mined in the first few weeks, and a 10% per annum growth rate was the lower bound of our market projections, but growth will eventually slow after say, a decade, hence the constant 100K additional units per year long term release schedule, which represents a decreasing percentage increase in supply each year. The system has long term sustainability as there are no more block halvings in the long term.
21: Are there any plans to make a publication in a urea related magazine? something like this: http://www.bcinsight.com/
We are shifting PR focus to target trade journals, and will be communicating with the editors at BCInsight, as well as various other publishers.
22: How come http://www.gescommodity.com/index.html has a redirect to http://greenearthsystems.com.au/category/news-press/? On any page that you leave from the main website it goes to that page and it always goes to the news section!
I think they did the redirection because people were confused about the outdated and messy web presence GES had. This is what happens when old websites go unmaintained. The original authors have moved on, so it is hard to patch up issues in a short period of time. If you want more detail about the scenario, you would have to contact GES via email@example.com.
23: Why does True-Asset avoid real questions ? Makes it look like he is hiding something…
I try to answer all questions openly, but I also have to respect the legal conditions that are inherent in the business transactions of the other companies and individuals involved with URO.
24: When did True-Asset start working for GES? Records from last year show he was working for another company?
If the other company you refer to is TruHD, then, as I have already explained weeks ago, TruHD is a GES subsidiary.
25: It’s clear from Australian government records Nilesh is in the winding up stage of insolvency proceedings from Impact Security Systems. Why is he unable to pay off his Australian creditors but able to subsidise 100’s of millions of dollars worth of urea to customers?
Please direct this question to GES via firstname.lastname@example.org. I should not answer questions on behalf of other people or companies.
26: Why does this GES employee look far more like the guy pictured at the trade fair than you? http://www.picpaste.com/jinsol_kim-2s9V5T0x.jpg
I don’t think he does.
27: What spooked Jeremy Ross (aka Jebus911)? He was the head pr guy and should’ve known the most about Uro besides you. Was there a falling out of sorts?
Jebus911 helped us a lot and we highly appreciate all the effort that he put in. I believe certain mistakes that I made on Twitter caused him to dissociate himself from Uro – which he has the full right to do so.
28: How come Bohan looks a lot younger in the picture where he is wearing the red shirt vs during the video of the google hang out after the dump?
Tired people look older.
29: How did GES entrust a potential million dollar project to only one guy who couldn’t maintain a professional google-hangout?.
PR is not my area of expertise (particularly after only three hours sleep!), but I do not believe that is reflection of my overall capability as lead developer of URO.
30: So does 1 uro really equal to 1 mt urea? How is this so? Who is providing the urea?
The Urea sellers that have ratified the Uro Protocol have agreed to supply urea at 1 metric tonne for 1 Uro, subject to the conditions of the protocol, and are fully capable of fulfilling the orders via their international network of Urea suppliers.
31: When will Uro “go to the moon”, and when it does, will we have a moon crater named “Uro”?
We have no extraterrestrial projects planned at this time. However, Urocoin holders are free to spend their money on whatever they want. This is the beauty of an open platform, open source decentralized currency that is traded on the open market.
32: Last question : Why does Uro need a whole new coin instead of using Bitcoin or become a sidechain?
I do not myself fully understand the potential vulnerabilities of side-chain protocols, so I cannot personally vouch for them. Also, the current Bitcoin network is limited to about 7 transactions per second, which I believe is a major issue going forward, with all manner of side-chain products being deployed on top of the Bitcoin blockchain.
Bitcoin’s core technology, which is what we are using, has suffered a number of vulnerabilities and recovered. At this stage (after 5 years of attacks), we feel that all the major problems with Bitcoin Core have more or less been resolved. This is why we are deploying this technology for Uro, because Uro is a long-term currency with the need for tested and proven long-term technology. I cannot say the same for the side-chain protocols, simply as a result of their young age and my own lack of understanding of their inner workings.
The Economics of Uro
Uro is a commodity-backed currency pegged to the value of 1 metric tonne of Urea.
Holders of 12,500 URO can swap them for a 1
2,500 metric tonne shipment of bulk Urea N46 fertilizer from participating merchants like GES, CTC, CCL and UTI. This is exactly the same as the Velocity Frequent Flyer Program, which permits holders to swap 125,000 Points for a 15,000 mile business class flight from participating merchants like Virgin, Etihad, Delta and Air NZ.
URO is as simple as that. This simplicity is what makes URO so powerful and elegant as a fast and efficient solution for purchasing Urea without waiting weeks and incurring massive fees to get traditional financial instruments issued by international banks.
Just like you can hold on to your Velocity Frequent Flyers Points until you are ready to redeem them for a flight, you can hold on to your URO until you need your Urea. Unlike Velocity Frequent Flyers Points however, URO units never expire. This allows you to buy URO when the cost is low, and exchange it for Urea when the price is high. In this way, farmers can hedge against the risk of not being able to afford fertiliser if Urea prices suddenly skyrocket, like they did in late 2008 from the $300 range to the $800 range.
URO is also a store of value, so you can freely exchange it to other currencies and spend without restriction. In the future, more traditional merchants will start accepting URO as a currency via payment processors or direct Uro network integration.
Uro Implementation: Neutrality, Decentralization and Legality
Just like the Velocity Frequent Flyer Program was initially spearheaded by Virgin back in 2005, Uro was created in collaboration with GES. Just like Virgin saw the need to neutralize and separate Velocity Rewards Pty Ltd by 2010 from VIrgin Blue in order to attract Etihad, Delta and Air NZ onto the same points platform, GES realised that to grow Uro to its maximum potential, a separate Uro Foundation was needed to attract other Urea sellers like UTI, CCL, CTC and many more to come.
The Uro Foundation’s implementation of Uro as an open platform, open source blockchain currency is a reflection of the purpose of Uro – which is to be the most widely adopted token for Urea trading internationally. The Foundation continues to develop an ever-expanding infrastructure around Uro so that this long term goal is achieved.
Because Uro is a long-term international payment settlement system, but also a commodity currency that will eventually see very high volume trading due to its pegged nature, we wanted a fully decentralized platform that is resistant to single-point vulnerabilities (like a single hash function being compromised) that also has the maximum safe transaction speed. This is why we choose a 3 minute block time and the multi-algorithm X11 proof-of-work system.
Finally, we have been criticised for not starting Uro with an IPO of the tokens at the reference pegged value. However, we have precisely chosen not to do this due to the possible legal issues revolving around securities issuance in various nations. In the same way that Velocity Frequent Flyers Points are released via “flying miles,” Uro is released via “mining power and time” by the network organically. We are simply adopting long standing legal precedents to provide a sound foundation for launching Uro. In summary, we did not go with Mastercoin or Counterparty as both require the Foundation to issue what may be classified in the future as “securities” or “investment contracts” at a defined price, which can open up the Uro Foundation to a range of possible legal ramifications.