Talking About the OmiseGO Developer Program (ODP)  with  Pong Cheecharern

In Blog, OMG Network by OMG Network

Pong, Product Manager at OmiseGO is the person behind the OmiseGO Developer Program (ODP). Being the point person for the program, he is the first contact between Alpha testers and OmiseGO roll-outs before they are released to the public in Beta. As of March 2019, a month after ODP’s release, 100 developers have been on boarded. They are now building, testing and contributing to the improvement of the network. This month, we talk to Pong and get to know more about him and the ODP.

Question: Hi Pong! Could you tell us about yourself and your work at OmiseGO?
Pong: My name is Pong and I’m a product manager at OmiseGO. I focus specifically on the OMG Network. My responsibility is around APIs, integration libraries and bringing in real world product feedback in order to improve the quality of life for application developers that are looking to utilize our network.

Q: How did the OmiseGO Developer Program start and what prompted it?
Pong: I see the OmiseGO Developer Program as a part of the natural progression of the products we are building. Once software reaches a certain level of maturity, you will start to want usage. However, for something like the OMG Network, we can’t rely on a typical startup mantra, like Facebook’s famous “ship fast and break things”. When building a financial infrastructure, you want to be sure things will work as expected –the network handles people’s money in digital form, the network needs to be highly secure and robust. On the other hand, you need to know that the infrastructure works in the real world and is stress tested. The ODP is a means to do both. It provides information garnered from real life situations through real users. In this case developers.

Q: What does your team envision the OmiseGO Developer Program to be in the long run?
Pong: In the long run, beyond the goal post of the Public Alpha release, I see ODP as a potential sandbox for a variety of different types of early stage products. For example, during the past month, we worked on plasma-cli, a tool that enables developers to interact with OMG Network from the command line. We see it as a useful tool, yet can only approximate how developers would react to it. This is where the OmiseGO Developer Program is useful — to test and gauge reactions through real users. In the long run we see the ODP as a means to test and build solutions based on what we have on hand and ensure that there’s as little friction as possible. It is also most beneficial to developers looking at integrations in the long term. Software evolves over time, and as someone who builds on the application layer, you will want to keep your pulse on the development of the network.

Q: How does the ODP work?
Pong: Currently, we have an ODP form. The process is that first the applicants sign up for the program through the form. These applications are reviewed by the product team for consideration. The team looks at their history in development, what they are working on, and so on. This is an important step to ensure that we are on boarding developers who are serious about testing and building on the network. Once accepted, we send each batch a simple integration guide with endpoints to Ari for them to test sending transactions to. They are also invited to join a Gitter channel where they can communicate with the OmiseGO engineering team. This is currently on a rolling basis. We are also looking forward to more personal engagement with teams and individual contributors in the future.

Q: Where did most of your enlisters come from? Do you know any of their backgrounds and goals?
Pong: Currently, the majority of enlisters come from the OMG community. are web developers or dApp developers. Ideally, we want people who are looking to build applications that utilize the OMG Network. I think an early access program like the OmiseGO Developer Program would provide a lot of value to people with specific requirements for scalable payment applications.

Q: What sort of interaction do you hope to get with people who enlist?
Pong: The program is still in its early stage, but we do get decent traction. There are people that have read our guide and successfully made transactions on our Alpha release. There are a few who ran into issues or bugs, and they are very communicative and we are able to track all of the problems, which is great. In the future, I would like to identify what it is that the developers in the ODP want to build and find a way to support their needs a little more.

Q: What do you hope to learn from the ODP?
Pong: I hope we will be more informed in the future about how application developers would like to use our network, including their specific use cases. This information will certainly help create bigger and better iterations of the network. A network is only as useful as the applications running on top of it.

Q: There’s a lot of interest in what OmiseGO is doing right now and what the teams are working on. Where can people go to stay updated?
Pong: First off, for developers I think to best way to get information on our projects would be through the ODP. This way, they would get first-hand information on our products by experiencing it for themselves. Second, I would suggest that people follow us on twitter at @omise_go, read our blog and subscribe to the monthly newsletter.

***Originally published on the OmiseGO March 2019 Newsletter ***