My chat with Melissa of GEM | Bitcorati Q&A
ERIC: What is Gem ? What exactly does Gem do ?
MELISSA: Gem is a platform for empowering developers to build apps that give individuals control over their own money. Gem uses multi-signature transactions and bank grade security to provide a simple and scalable development platform for building secure Bitcoin apps.
ERIC: What makes Gem so unique compared to many bitcoin startups our there ? What’s your advantage over your closest competitor ( if have one) ?
- Security: Gem’s API is unmatched in its level of security and ease of use. We are ultra paranoid (and appropriately so) when it comes to security, and we’ve built a unique solution that leverages multi-signature transactions to eliminate single points of failure, and combined that with multi-factor authentication, bank-level monitoring, and fraud detection.
- Simplicity: The Gem API suite can be implemented in minutes with less than ten lines of code, and provides an out-of-the-box digital currency infrastructure that doesn’t require developers to be experts in cryptography, security, or the Bitcoin protocol.
- Scalability: Redundant infrastructure, scalable architecture, and a globally distributed deployment ensure that our platform is reliable, will support high volume transactions, and is geographically available.
ERIC: Who are team members now at this stage ? How did the team form or meet ?
MELISSA: We’re a passionate team of eight and growing. We’ve attracted team members that have deep expertise in cryptography, payments security, and defense, as well as a common mission to empower the individual. You can find more information about us at https://gem.co/about. Many of our team members had previously worked together and had a shared vision for wanting to build something that would have an impact on our future.
ERIC: So can you guess what is gem valuation at moment ? What stage is gem at in terms of investment ?
MELISSA: Gem is privately held, and we are not able to disclose the current valuation of the company. We have raised an initial $2M seed round to date, which was recently disclosed.
ERIC: Who have been helpful or instrumental for Gem in terms of mentorship , guidance , investing , or evanlegcial fan promoting?
MELISSA: We are fortunate enough to have a team of investors (see link below) who have been incredibly helpful and insightful in providing us strategic and product guidance, industry connections, and are public champions of our cause.
ERIC: Tell Bitcorati members what hope to accomplish with Gem, short and long term goals ?
MELISSA: Short term, we want to empower the next wave of tens of thousands of developers who have yet to enter Bitcoin space because it’s too complex and too difficult. We want to give them a baseline on which they can build, so they can create a wave of amazing products that will appeal to the mainstream consumer. We want to aid the achievement of widespread adoption of this technology, and we think the best way to do this is to empower the developers who are building the tools and applications that will facilitate this growth.
In the long term, we want to empower the everyday individual to take control over their own assets, and to liberate them from an antiquated banking system.
ERIC: Tell us about some of your fantastic products and services ?
Our wallet was built with a focus of making it the most secure wallet on the planet, but not at the expense of ease of use. We have very thoughtfully built in cutting-edge security elements into the product including multi-signature functionality, multi-factor authentication, and bank-level fraud monitoring and authentication. And we’ve done this while ensuring that our wallet is incredibly easy for any developer or partner to integrate. It literally takes less than 10 lines of code for a developer to integrate Gem into their product.
ERIC: Tell us about some difficulties or headache moments you had with Gem ?
The main challenge for us has been that Bitcoin is such a new technology that there are many, many features and new capabilities we would like to build into the Bitcoin ecosystem, but can’t do them all at once, so we have to stay focused on the current product and save the other exciting things for later on.
ERIC: Tell us some of your moments of happiness and joy with Gem ?
MELISSA: We’ve built a team that is incredibly passionate and enthusiastic about our mission here at Gem and it’s inspiring to work in an environment surrounded by that kind of energy. We’re all driven by the knowledge that we’re building a platform that developers will use to make digital currency accessible to everyone; a platform that developers will use to change the way the world exchanges value in ways beyond what we currently think is possible. That’s really gratifying for us.
ERIC: What have been some very diffcult choices Gem had to make for business ?
MELISSA: Making decisions around which customer needs we will tackle immediately, and which will have to wait for a later date has been and continues to be our biggest challenge.
ERIC: What are some smart and innovated business choices that Gem has made ?
MELISSA: A maniacal focus on security from the start was probably our best decision. We built a multi-pronged solution that utilizes multi-signature technology, multi-factor authentication, and bank level monitoring. All of these capabilities would be incredibly difficult for most developers or organizations, but we’ve made it easy for them to quickly add these capabilities, so they can stay focused on building their product.
ERIC: Does Gem have a website & mobile app ?
Our website is https://gem.co . At this time, Gem is not offering a mobile app, but continue to check back with us for further developments.
ERIC: What is Gem thoughts on bit license and possible more government regulations for crypto- currencies?
We are very early in the discussions around cryptocurrency and Bitcoin regulations. The beauty of Bitcoin protocol is the inherent low cost structure and transparency of this technology. Government regulations like BitLicense will continue to put both of those things at risk. It will be important for the industry to build in standard capabilities such as consumer and merchant protections to address the underlying intent of the proposed regulations; legislation and innovation will need to go hand in hand to ensure continued growth of Bitcoin adoption.
ERIC: How feel about IBM and Samsung teaming up and creating their own blockchain ?
MELISSA: Most people think about Bitcoin as a digital currency or a payment system, but in doing so, they are ignoring an even bigger innovation which is the underlying block chain technology. That IBM and Samsung are building out an internet of things platform based on this technology is exciting, and shows the appreciation companies are seeing for broader applications of a distributed infrastructure. That being said, we are completely agnostic in terms of what blockchain wins out. In fact, we’ll support every effort to replace centralized systems with distributed systems. While our focus is on Bitcoin right now, our wallet is capable of handling any digital asset.
ERIC: Lastly , feel free say whatever you want .. Go!
MELISSA: We have an incredibly dedicated, smart and passionate team building key Bitcoin infrastructure that we are convinced will empower people to take control of their money and change the way the world exchanges value beyond digital currency. What we do as a company is give brilliant minds the tools to make it easy for them to invent new ways to use the block chain to build new applications of this technology – starting with payments and evolving beyond what we can even imagine today.