Meet our next speaker at TangleCon 2023: Sebastian Weber! Together with the team of web 3.0 experts, he advises and supports companies in successfully implementing DLT solutions. Learn more about him and what he will be talking about at TangleCon in the interview.
Please tell something about your background.
I studied Business Engineering and started working for Airbus and in the automotive industry. Besides that, I always had the hobby with DLT and wanted to pitch a project in the company to do something with that. I had a cool boss who gave me the freedom to build up a team and a project and show what is the real value that DLT can provide. That was the main question in the beginning - to spread from what hype and speculation is and what can actually be solved with the technology.
We thought about use cases and the project Chain to Bike was the result. The e-bike market is huge, especially since the Corona pandemic. We started with e-bikes because they are really expensive, but there is no regulatory around them. For example, for cars you have a certificate that you own it, checked it, did oil changes, and so on. E-bikes can also cost 15,000 euros sometimes and apparently, they have oil changes too. If you want to sell your e-bike who is proving you that it is not stolen, who is proving you that it belongs to you, that you did all the check-ups and so on. There was nothing like that, and we thought maybe we can use DLT for that. Then we started highly motivated to build up a team and knowledge. We used IOTA because we thought we will have a lot of transaction, so there is no possibility to have big fees. That were the first steps.
How did you get interested in IOTA?
I think the future will be multichain, but I wanted to specialize in one field because it is so hard to keep track of the whole DLT space. You will always have some players in a specific field that are really good in something. Maybe it is IoT transactions, maybe it is value storing or whatever. For me, it was hard to distinguish between different projects which are kind of similar and to forecast which of them will be the next leader in that field. I was pragmatic and looked at the point of IoT devices. There, the unique selling point is zero fees. I don’t know if IOTA will be the biggest project, but there will be use cases that require zero fees. That was the decision.
What are you currently working on?
We started with Chain to Bike. I hope we will have the chance to present it this year at the EUROBIKE. But because it is such a huge project with different values like digital record, transfer of ownership, proof of ownership, digital identities, etc. it brought all the core values together in one project. There were a lot of dead ends and waiting for example for the EVM or smart contracts. So, we could not develop any further.
Parallel we had other projects like Crypto-Gin which can already be achieved with the status of the technology. We worked with them for building a digital twin. With Crypto-Gin, it was cool to have a use case you can hold in the hand and look at. Customers get a gin bottle that is certified, that is authentic, and have an NFT, a digital twin, they can trade and so on. We tried to use that use case to explain what value this technology could bring.
What will you be talking about at TangleCon?
As I said in the beginning, we try to be an expert in a specific field, and we decided to go with IOTA and the needs of the industry. We realized that fees are a big thing: if you have a lot of transactions, a lot of use cases don't make sense anymore. This is a topic I will be covering. Not only in general to say fees are bad, but then go deeper. How many fees are ok, where are no fees not good? There are use cases where it would make sense to have fees, or where a use case dies with the introduction of a fee.
What is the biggest topic for you in the community right now?
The EVM compatibility is a big thing in the IOTA ecosystem. Also in the Crypto-Gin use case we build everything else but are still waiting for these features to deploy smart contracts.
Another thing, I realized more and more because we are working pretty closely with the community just to give something back and to connect, is that we are a cool and positive community, where everyone is helping each other out. We just need to get together to projects to solve problems. But we are not the best bonded community and because of this we need to work more efficient to connect each other and be stronger.
What is the biggest challenge in the industry at the moment?
Digitalization. It is hard to see that a lot of other countries can do that better than Germany. For example, Belgium and the Netherlands are pushing forward with EnergieKnip and all the cool projects there.
We get feedback from the industry that some still have to digitalize, they have to get data out of the processes. If they already do that, they are still in the phase that they need to realize that this data has value. And if that point is reached, then they can maybe think about how to store the data. But if you have no data, you don’t care about decentralization.
What are your hopes for IOTA in the future?
I think we have a huge potential in the field of green tech because we are perfectly suited for that. The next big growth is already happening in the industries in all the green tech areas. There we can support because we are low energy costs, we have no fees. We can be the perfect infrastructure for small startups to connect.
I guess the new technology won’t always come from the big players, who are slow in changing their behavior. If we can provide this infrastructure for everyone to contribute to that change, that is a huge potential for IOTA. We just need to use it.
Dear Sebastian, thanks for the interview. See you at TangleCon!