Dfinity Offering $220M in Developer Grants for Ambitious ‘Internet Computer’ Project

Bill Mount

The Dfinity Foundation has announced a grant fund of nearly a quarter of a billion dollars to support initiatives to get more developers working on its Internet Computer and make it easier once they do so. The Internet Computer (TIC) is a new blockchain system from Dfinity that it claims […]

The Dfinity Foundation has announced a grant fund of nearly a quarter of a billion dollars to support initiatives to get more developers working on its Internet Computer and make it easier once they do so.

The Internet Computer (TIC) is a new blockchain system from Dfinity that it claims enables decentralized services at speeds familiar to internet users, by running smart contracts (called canisters) on made-for-purpose machines in data centers around the world. 

At Consensus 2021 on Tuesday, Dominic Williams, founder of the Dfinity Foundation, referred to this as a “sovereign physical layer,” distinguishing it from proof-of-stake infrastructure that runs on cloud services from companies like Amazon.

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The new fund has 200 million Swiss francs (approximately $223 million) to put to work.

“Our aim is to support the reimagination of all systems and services in new forms using smart contracts on an infinite public blockchain, and nothing else. What the world now builds to take advantage of blockchain’s new capabilities shall be an important and fascinating next chapter,” Williams said in a press release. 

Interested developers can get more information on the Dfinity website.

The fund is available for projects such as tools for developers to speed up coding, infrastructure such as oracles and block explorers, accelerators and applications that might bring in users. 

Related: Consensus 2021: Six Questions for Gartner’s Avivah Litan

During his Consensus 2021 appearance, Williams said that over 100,000 identities have already been created on TIC, and described a forthcoming social network called Distrikt.

“You’re going to see a blockchain that evolves and progresses technically far faster than blockchains have evolved and progressed technically in the past,” Williams said.

Olaf Carlson-Wee, founder and CEO of Polychain Capital, said in a statement, “What I am excited to fund is a service or product that is native to the new system rather than what feels like a porting of an application from Web 2 to Web 3.”

Polychain leads the $14.5 million Beacon Fund which also funds projects built for TIC.

As of this writing, ICP, the network’s native token, is trading at $139.36, well below the $400 it traded at early on, when it first went live on the Coinbase Pro exchange.

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