A few similarities I've noticed between the Lunar New Year and the cryptocurrency space:
1. Both involve people exchanging currency with one another.
2. Red is a prevalent color.
3. Both use the moon as a standard of measurement.
So, you can begin to see why I thought it'd be a no-brainer to celebrate the new year by spinning up burner wallets containing about $1 each, with my friend JZ, to distribute to our TD community. Sort of like a digital crypto version of the red envelope.
Here's where I note that just because something is a no-brainer does not mean that it is easy.
Trying to get this giveaway up and running was as enjoyable as, I dunno, getting a root canal. It was painful. And it took a long time. But instead of writing out all my grievances, I've decided to illustrate them. Here's what a bit of the miserable journey looked like, with pictures!
At a very high level, I was converting $25 worth of BTC I already have into DAI so these xDAI burner wallets could work.
The first step was converting my BTC to ETH (so I could purchase DAI). Sounds like it should be easy, right? Wrong.
When JZ and I went to move BTC we realized the BTC wallet hadn't been updated for a while. But, when we did decide to update, we were conveniently redirected to...a phishing site.
Don't see it? Here let's zoom in.
To the untrained eye, both red circles seem to be circling the same thing. They're not.
The URL has a capital "i" which looks like a lowercase "L" to spell out "ELECTRUM"- which is the client we were trying to update. Fortunately, we caught it in time. But others, like this guy who lost $42k, haven't been so lucky👇
I guess the lesson here is to always double, triple, quadruple check URLs. Even when - especially when - you're redirected to them.
Fast forward a few steps, after trading my BTC for ETH I then connected to Radar Relay to wrap my ETH so I could get DAI.
Ah, the necessary evil that is Metamask.
All I have to say about step 2 is I created a custom RPC and tried sending 4 transactions to the xDAI wallet.
And they all failed.
JZ and I couldn't get any of the confirmations to go through so we spun up a new wallet.
I should also probably mention that, for reasons I do not understand nor have taken the time to Google, DAI is displayed as ETH in Metamask. So $25 worth of DAI shows up as 25 ETH (roughly $3k USD).
Steps 3-6 are grouped because they all went like this for the most part
We decided to abandon everything we'd worked on before and purchase new DAI as well as start a completely fresh wallet. We repeated steps 1-6 and finally:
The big takeaway
Crypto UX has a long way to go. Groundbreaking, I know. When people say crypto UX is bad, though, it's usually said with contempt. To explain away why there are dramatic drop off rates. Or why people haven't even begun to use a product to even drop off in the first place.
But I mean crypto UX is bad in amazement.
It's really this bad and still has users! It still has people who need it as a store of value. It still has people playing with it and building on it. Even with all this friction.
And that kinda makes me, I don't know, hopeful?
If you've made it this far, JZ and I did get the wallets up successfully. For the next 24 hrs, we'll be dropping trivia questions on our company twitter here. The answers can be used as passwords to unlock $1. The first person who types in the answer, gets the dollar. We'll be doing 25 of these between today and tomorrow.
And here are instructions on how to claim money from your "red envelope."
On that note, happy Lunar New Year 🐷
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