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Mozaic Diaries #1

Chapter 1 : Meet the Team

Four years ago, the story of Mozaic and our crypto journey began in a familiar yet remarkable place – a sleek, towering complex of glass, concrete, and steel overlooking million-dollar yachts, with the iconic sails of the Sydney Opera House only a few clicks away.

Far removed from the puzzling, highly experimental world of “smart contracts” with their infinite machinations and a boatload of technical world salad jargon (immutable, trustless; trusted, configurable – upgradable/non-upgradable; pls make it stop), a few of us had been working as senior derivatives traders by day at a proprietary trading firm for a few years. However, by night, we tirelessly worked to solve an in-house problem of our own:

"We aimed to achieve sustainable yield generation through programmatic liquidity strategies, which independently assessed the ebbs and flows of the market with little to no human intervention. We felt there was an in-house need to automate this process, and so our choices took us down some interesting and unexpected roads."

*with a few speed bumps along the way, but we’ll get to that later.

Our personal journey and ambitions for this pet project led us to focus more on pushing personal trades and volumes rather than just the trading desks we worked at. We worried that our superiors would be upset if they found out. However, after they discovered our efforts, much to our surprise, they were very supportive of our endeavors. Our CEO even joined us as one of the strategic advisors. (Thanks, Brendan.)

One of our key goals during the interview process was to establish a cohort of talented and highly experienced individuals from diverse backgrounds, each bringing their unique expertise to our shared mission: making Mozaic a premier composable liquidity layer for sustainable yield generation. Our aim was to optimize returns for our users by leveraging advanced artificial intelligence algorithms (AI) and cross-chain interoperability using LayerZero technology. It sounds like a mouthful, doesn’t it? Well, you can call it an AI-Fi protocol because, in this industry, narrative sells like hotcakes.

And this marks our introductory session – a quick "behind-the-scenes" sneak peek into our kitchen with all the chefs who’ll make it happen. Let’s meet the team, shall we?

Chief Executive Officer

From his humble beginnings as a gold miner in the Australian Outback to becoming a senior derivatives trader at Star Beta Australia within a few years, Calum has stayed true to his Aussie roots and never shied away from a challenge....

  • From earning a bachelor's degree in electronics and electrical engineering to working in gold mines with grueling 12-hour shifts that would make Peter Schiff proud, to navigating a world of sophisticated software programs, a dizzying maze of data, and complex mathematical models for predicting market movements and making split-second decisions, Calum managed to develop deep technical and financial acumen. He traded commodities, equities, futures, and currencies, and tested, designed, and implemented bespoke risk management strategies.

  • Transitioning into the world of cryptocurrencies was a natural progression for Calum. Back in 2020, he was trading hundreds of millions in notional volume through cryptocurrency futures contracts, all while innovating and developing cutting-edge algorithmic yield strategies for crypto-specific products.

"Calum led his experienced cohort in developing the Archimedes AI over a span of years, setting the baseline for the community-owned Mozaic Protocol, which launched in August 2023. He will continue to spearhead the protocol's decentralization efforts moving forward."

He definitely knows a thing or two about playing long-term, positive-sum games in the infinite gold rush of selling shovels.

AI Specialist & Advisor

Greg Tanaka is an industry veteran with decades of experience in engineering, specializing in machine learning and AI. He has a strong background in product management, business development, and operations, and has worked across various domains, including SaaS, cloud computing, and computer vision. His expertise spans multiple continents, including Asia, Europe, and North America....

  • As a Caltech & UCB senior alum, Greg holds numerous patents and currently serves as a chief executive officer of Percolata, a forecasting-as-a-service (FaaS) company that raised a $10M Series A from investors like Google Ventures, Andreessen Horowitz, and Menlo Ventures. For over 12 years, Percolata has specialized in highly accurate machine learning forecasting (weather patterns, shopping data) and IoT-enabled services.

  • When Greg and his team aren't placing in the top 5% of some of the most prestigious forecasting competitions in the world (Kaggle, 2020), he enjoys spending time with his family and serving as a local statesman in the City of Palo Alto, CA, where he has held multiple administrative positions over the years.

"An entrepreneur, researcher, engineer & statesman in his own right - he's truly one of a kind."

Suffice it to say, there aren’t enough superlatives to describe the breadth of expertise, deep knowledge, and practical skills that Greg possesses, along with the immense value he brings to the table.

He is truly one of the industry’s top powerhouse titans in the fields of the Internet of Things (IoT) and machine learning. Greg has been instrumental in developing our Archimedes Artificial Intelligence (AI) model, which serves as the basis for the Mozaic protocol since its inception.

Yes, he is HIM. With a stellar resume, deep expertise, and a highly approachable and kind demeanor.

Lead Engineer

Tom is one of our key fullstack and smart contract engineers, with over a decade of experience in shipping products in both the Web2 and Web3 industries. Simply put, he is an engineering wizard with deep technical expertise. He has successfully built Internet of Things (IoT) devices, artificial intelligence models, pipelines, complex large-scale web applications, mobile apps, and has helped grow startups and development teams.....

An innately curious and creative soul, his career took an interesting turn of events:

  • From building cool and complex primitives in the early stages of his career, such as a fun Internet of Things (IoT) tabletop simulator game using 3D-printed pieces with RFID tags, Tom has shown his engineering prowess.

  • He has taught at web development bootcamps and served as the Chief Technical Officer and Founder of the software development agency Trinity Tech in Amsterdam. At Trinity Tech, he built and led teams to ship consumer web and mobile apps, as well as AI pipelines, for various startups and multinational firms.

  • Tom successfully exited as the CTO and founder of the $50M fintech startup Pitchdrive, which connected a highly curated list of portfolio companies and partners to early-stage startups, securing lightning-fast venture capital funding using data-driven insights from their proprietary growth scoring and benchmark engines (Current AUM ~100M). He scaled Pitchdrive from a single-man operation in an apartment to an international team of 15+, fundraising multiple investment rounds, and overseeing product and business development along with all essential responsibilities as the lead-in-charge.

  • His current Web3 and AI endeavors include developing an on-demand personalized chat therapy service via an emotionally intelligent AI companion (Ori), writing secure and gas-efficient smart contracts, and developing single sign-on (SSO) authentication modules. He is also involved in creating on-chain economies, enabling gasless transactions, facilitating on-ramp/off-ramp integrations, and delivering a variety of bespoke solutions.

"Tom's deep technical expertise & business acumen makes him a perfect fit for us in leading in our core technical product offerings, as well as lend our CEO a useful hand in business development & operations processes as well."

While Tom certainly relishes the challenge of solving complex technical problems with his peers, he enjoys spending his downtime hiking in green spaces or playing various sports.

AI Specialist

Sam brings a plethora of industry experience spanning over two decades as a data scientist, quant researcher, and machine learning specialist across the globe. His humble beginnings, driven by curiosity, led him to open his first online trading account at the age of 16 while helping a friend run a cyber-cafe during the summer holidays. While playing car racing games with others, he couldn't help but notice a group of older retirees engrossed in online trading. This moment sparked his imagination, igniting a long and fascinating career at the intersection of finance, academia, and technology that he still enjoys to this day, ultimately leading to his transition into the world of Web3....

  • While his first creation was an interactive NFL game simulator, merging his love of sports with the digital realm, he quickly transitioned from software engineering to the fast-paced world of algorithmic trading as a quant researcher and data scientist. Working for a London hedge fund for half a decade, he contributed to its growth from $300 million to over $1 billion in assets under management (AUM).

  • Despite being an IIT-K alum and having a successful tenure at a hedge fund, his thirst for knowledge never waned. He embarked on academic research for another five years, completing his PhD in Information Systems from The University of Texas at Dallas, with a focus on blockchain technology and artificial intelligence. His unique blend of expertise in data science and machine learning proved extremely useful in the Web3 space. He developed pricing models for NFTs, deep learning-based image similarity detection models, transaction classifier graphs for regulatory and compliance reporting, agent-based and Monte Carlo simulations for risk evaluation, and prototyped risk models for credit and insolvency risk based on user transactions and social network graphs.

"A Swiss knife of talent and creativity with unique fintech expertise in both Web2 and Web3 domains, he often finds solace after work with robots, nature, and yoga retreats. He will be lending his expertise with Archimedes AI for our upcoming vaults."

He's co-authored research papers, secured grants for AI applications, and advised startups in the fintech and AI space. Sam serves as an adjunct professor at Northeastern University and San Jose State University, where he shares his expertise and inspires the next generation. His work and insights have also been featured in new-age books like "Digital Fortunes: A Value Investor's Guide to the New Economy.”

Smart Contract Security Specialist

Hamed discovered his passion for blockchain technology while searching for a topic for his bachelor's project in 2014. Immersing himself in cryptography, virtual machines, and hash chains, he developed a fully functional experimental cryptocurrency as the culmination of his degree....

  • After graduation, Hamed worked on various projects for four years, including developing cryptocurrency teller machines, NFT platforms, trading bots, and cryptocurrency-friendly payment gateways. He also designed and implemented analytics services for mobile game developers, mentored developers, and restructured in-house CI/CD pipelines to automate deployment processes. These experiences led to his first role as a core blockchain developer, where he orchestrated the design and implementation of a microservices-centric cryptocurrency trading platform. During this time, he also created an authenticity certification and trading platform for handwoven carpets and other priceless artifacts using blockchain technology.

  • After learning about the infamous DAO hack and other smart contract vulnerabilities, Hamed was drawn to blockchain security. He decided to dedicate his master's studies to this pursuit, starting his postgraduate studies in Information Systems Security at Concordia University, Quebec, focusing on the automated verification of smart contracts via symbolic execution and fuzz testing. For the past couple of years, Hamed has been working as a blockchain security researcher and smart contract security auditor at Oak Security, closely working on EVM-based contracts, Solana smart contracts, and Cosmos SDK modules.

"He will be our in-house lead for enhancing the security and development efforts of the smart contracts and AI modules for our automated yield farming vaults. In addition to his role, he will coordinate with external security auditors and partners, such as Hypernative Labs."

Currently, he is studying zero-knowledge proofs and their applications in blockchain scalability, making his experience invaluable.

Strategic Advisor

Brendan is an industry legend with multiple decades of C-suite experience in insurance, tax, investment management, sustainable energy solutions, and proprietary trading....

  • From working at Zurich Insurance Group as a tax manager, he quickly learned the ropes and rose to lead the tax division at investment management firm AMP Capital, one of Australia's largest retail and corporate pension providers for almost half a decade, followed by a promotion as it's acting Chief Financial Officer (CFO) in 2020.

  • A Chartered Accountant (CA) and Commodities Trading Advisor (CTA) by trade, Brendan ventured into the sustainable energy business for a short while, before leading our cohort of derivative traders as the Chief Executive Officer at Star Beta Australia. Star Beta and Star Beta Technologies is one of Australia's leading proprietary trading and investment management firms which deals with multiple asset classes such as futures, stocks, bonds, commodities and currencies, and is one of the world's leading cryptocurrency trading desk operations employing more than 200 full-time traders.

"He has been one of our earliest supporters since the inception of the Archimedes AI model during our time at Star Beta. Brendan continues to offer financial, operational, and strategic advice."

We are eternally grateful for the expertise and value he brings to the table.

The emergent markets of cryptocurrencies, smart contracts, and decentralized finance stand at a crossroads today. They are caught in an eternal struggle between the infrequent but bright opportunities and the immense technological, financial, and regulatory challenges that lie ahead. The goal is to bring these innovations to the general masses in a secure and reliable way while finding the correct product-market fit in the process..

We understand the highly reflexive and self-cannibalizing forces at play within the industry. While blockspace for consumer DApps is abundant, there are not enough DApps to fill it. The market is dominated by unsustainable ponzinomics farms and celebrity meme-coins, and the risk of smart contract code exploits remains high. Additionally, corporate malfeasance by trusted intermediaries, such as LUNA and FTX, has resulted in billions of dollars in lost wealth and a significant erosion of social trust.

We do not believe in judging the free market for the choices it makes. However, we strongly support the ethos of open-source innovation within permissionless markets. We believe that sustainable, decentralized yields without trusted intermediaries are a reasonable goal, irrespective of market cycles, for both retail and institutional clients. We are fully committed to delivering trustless, permissionless, and self-custodial yields on our "progressive path" of decentralization, while abstracting away unnecessary UI/UX complexities to provide a unified consumer experience.

We haven't reached where we are today in the world of decentralized finance on our own. We stand on the shoulders of giants who came before us. We would like to extend our gratitude to the countless mentors, advisors, strategic partners, and former and current employees who have been a part of our journey.

"There's so much more to come"

In the upcoming few weeks, we will be publishing a series of blog articles describing our protocol roadmap, security improvements & reflections on past events, publish a technical paper on our proprietary AI model and provide more in-depth insights into why AI-Fi makes sense.

Mozaic is not just a narrative to us, it's a way of life and endeavor we believe will revolutionize the way automated yield farming is conducted, making it more efficient, accessible, and profitable for users. Stay tuned for more updates as we continue to develop and make waves in the DeFi space.

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#cryptocurrency#defi#yield farming#blockchain#ai#finance
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