It’s important to stress why our variant of peer-to-peer technology is any good when that demo is made. Specifically, peer-to-peer now has bad connotation, and most people prefer convenience over having authority (i.e. piracy after Netflix + Spotify, the fact people still are on Instagram despite deleting Facebook). Bitcoin and Ethereum had this problem with growing the community, and I think it took a while for people to realize what really mattered was open standards and having another option for money.
The more clear the benefits are, the easier it is to win the trust of developers on the use case side, p2p payments is probably too general. Most people will compare it to their current situation as a means of evaluation, so creating p2p Venmo isn’t as exciting as say, hey you can coordinate a transfer of funds from Venmo to Square Cash using this (hypothetical example). I think cross-currency web payments is much more specific, and gets to the bottom of what people care about. p2p is a mixed bag. Doesn’t mean you shouldn’t sell the protocol as peer-to-peer, I think peer-to-peer isn’t really a use case as much as it is a design decision. It does have implications for use cases, but I think that’s where we need more specificity.
Also, depends what on you want the demos to show. Do you want to show the flexibility of the protocol more than the performance? (i.e. why is cryptocurrency exchange or ecommerce or anything better on Interledger than it is anywhere else?)
If I didn’t know anything about ILP, maybe I’d be interested in seeing the fancy ways you can program money in internet packets to do things.
However, use cases aren’t the only way to win people. You may want more protocol maximalist types too. Leverage the power of academic computer science when it comes to the Interledger protocol, because there’s so many brilliant ideas you can use as inspiration when working on it (i.e. those of the early internet, BitTorrent, make tcp fast project at Google, etc). This was at least part of my ambitions when I was proposing a new place to have conversations. Mini-talks/articles like the one you posted on switching BTP to use HTTP instead of Websockets are always cool.
Speaking events are good. I think most workshops don’t always bring in the best audience and nor do they leave the best impression. They are usually not paced well and engineers are very aware that it’s not the most efficient way to gather information. It’s the same reason why professors don’t stand up in lecture showing you how to code.
If you do want to do a hands-on format, do hackathons. ETH Denver and ETH SF are prime examples where the ETH community shines, and gets some amazing tooling and protocol designs built. Any good workshops engineers and researchers will go to tend to be a more relaxed hackathon, in the sense that they are multiple days, any lectures are computer science based and people will go into their own groups to hack on something or learn. Few examples include the IC3 Bootcamp or the RWOT workshops. This is pretty much the golden ticket to growing and sustaining productive, open-source communities.
Better talks tend to be computer science-y (i.e. talk about scaling techniques, don’t use buzzwords, leverage big ideas in systems, networking and security, keep code snippets brief) and shorter (30 minutes or under) if you’re trying to get builders excited about technology. Record these with good production quality whenever possible, it really stands out.
Talking about use cases and high level stuff without demos have the opposite effect on most people. Ideas can be good, but they are only appreciated significantly later on once implemented. Prime example is the E2E arguments paper, where most people didn’t really understand this until David Clark himself implemented it in the internet. You really have to see the benefits to get user-facing engineers, and that’s really tough without dissecting the protocol right now.
Application level examples and tutorials
Posting stuff on YouTube helps! (NEAR protocol is doing whiteboarding videos, and I think @danrobinson is doing one on Interledger). It’s also on us to speak at web and systems related conferences when possible.
Bite sized tutorials are great, so many people got on the Lightning Network because you could do stuff with a Raspberry Pi, or deploy on DigitalOcean pretty easily. Crypto enthusiasts love setting up nifty infrastructure. There was also a UI wallet available for Lightning, so it’s easier to work with, but CLI tutorials are fine. When breaking changes are made, I recommend taking stuff down if there’s no time to fix the example or tutorial, or at least marking it as deprecated. Leaving a bad impression is worse than leaving no impression imo.
When things start to pick up, we should engage mailing lists that keep track of crypto/cutting edge web related projects (i.e. Proof of Work, etc.). Or, consider having one potentially managed by Xpring, solely for Interledger project updates?
It might be worth rewriting the Interledger Protocol paper, publishing it and speaking at conferences from an academic standpoint. It’s changed so much since the last revision.
Just keep on using this forum, I think it’s an excellent way to get people excited.
A cool example of this is just being able to pay a random router that you found in an area for Wi-fi access, and you pay on a per-packet basis or something. I’d love to do this, but I wouldn’t be able to until a few months down, sadly.