I wanted to attempt to tackle the equity vertical by building a decentralized peer to peer payment system specifically designed and tailored for users in Central and Latin America. A couple of weeks ago, my friends and I won the Startup Exchange Pitch Competition at Georgia Tech with this idea. We strongly believe that technologies that are widely accepted in the US need to be modified so that it can have the same widespread adoption in a different audience. By doing this we hope to close the technological opportunity gap between the US and Latin America by completing this project and pursuing similar projects.
After meeting with mentors, I decided to pivot the idea. Now instead of working like a normal peer to peer payment application that uses banks as the transfer backbone (i.e. Venmo), I decided I wanted to create a payment app that used xpring blockchain technology as the transfer backbone. This incredible open source technology opened a world of possibilities of what the app can now represent. It can now be the digital wallet of anyone and people would be willing to try it out (instead of Apple wallet for instance) because of how easy it is to send money to anyone in the network within seconds in a secure manner. This is only possible by taking advantage of the current technologies and of blockchain's ledger security protocol.
What it does
System is capable of sending money (any type of money once xpring ledger is implemented in project) to any user's wallet on network (regardless of their geographical location or bank account) within seconds.
How I built it
Implemented a standard wallet based P2P system using Java as the main coding language for the backend, using Cloud Spanner as the database of the project, and using xpring SDK to make the money transfers between the users in the network.
Challenges I ran into
Setting up the environment for xpring SDK, depositing 'fake' money into wallets for demo purposes (still working on it), and connecting the central program to the Cloud Spanner. Setting up the Cloud Spanner functionality within the code was also a really big challenge since this was my first experience with databases.
Accomplishments that I'm proud of
I'm really proud that the system was able to successfully incorporate the open source technology provided by xpring SDK to be able to complete payments between users in a seamless and most efficient manner. Even though the design around the system is still lacking (better database, UI, finishing touches on database, upload code to Google Cloud Compute Engine), I was able to overcome the biggest challenge of transfer functionality.
What I learned
How to use xpring in my application to be able to move money safely between users wallets
What's next for DecentralizedPeerToPeerPaymentSystem
Develop an app that can use this system. Create a more formal database for this system and start working on beta project.