Providing an Open Network for the Smart Economy with Neo Director Lili Zhao

Founded in 2014, Neo is an open-source community blockchain platform. Unlike other blockchains currently on the market, Neo is the most feature-complete for building decentralized applications. Neo provides the key infrastructure to power web3 and has smart contracts that enable developers to automate asset management.

At the Blockdown 2022 conference in Croatia, we interviewed Lili Zhao, the director of global development at Neo. 

Intrigued by NEO’s journey from conceptualization to market, we began our conversation by touching base on Neo’s background and its development over the last eight years:

“Neo is one of the pioneers in this space. It was created in 2014 by two juniors Da Hongfei and Erik Zhang. And for people who are new in the blockchain space, they may not have heard of us because, for the past few years, we have dedicated all our resources to building,” explained Lili.

Continuing, Lili clarified that Neo is not simply a modification or upgrade of an existing chain but rather a brand new blockchain altogether, hence the time taken to build: 

“So, in theory, it took many years to build because it’s not just an upgrade of the existing chain. It’s a completely new blockchain. And it has unique features as well, such as interoperability, decentralized file storage, decentralized identity, and Oracle’s.

Alongside these features, Neo also claims to be the most developer-friendly protocol, a statement Lili believes in and is particularly proud of:

“It took us three years to build. And from day one, we supported multi programming languages, such as C sharp, Python, JavaScript, Golang, etc. We are very much focused on this large mainstream developer pool of around 20 million-plus.”

“And we have a team in Seattle headed by a former Microsoft veteran, and he is a genius, with a brilliant mind, and he and his team are building the best tools developers can use.”

Educational launchpads are another key element of Neo’s strategy to make Neo the most accessible blockchain for developers. Currently, Neo has launched two launchpads with this goal in mind, one of which is taking place right now named Polaris:

“We’ve launched two launch pads. The first one was last year, which lasted for a few weeks. And for the first weeks of preparation, we provided educational and technical workshops and invited experienced developers in the space to provide assistance and support. 

“As we speak, we have the second launchpad going on called Polaris. So the first few weeks are our educational, technical deep dive into specific questions, for instance, file storage, Oracle, and decentralized identity.”

“Our developer community is also very supportive; if anyone has questions, they can always ask”, explained Lily.

Of course, partaking in a launchpad is one of the quickest and most effective ways you can get a blockchain project to market, but for Neo, time has been of the essence. Therefore, taking the time to build, is something they will continue to do far into the future, regardless of market turbulence:

“You know, it doesn’t matter whether the market fluctuates, that doesn’t matter to us. We are a protocol and a web platform, which is industry agnostic.”

“Our focus is on building and continuing to build, leading technology development in the space. Likewise, we want to continue to grow our ecosystem through onboarding more decentralized applications and launching more launchpads,” 

Thus, through development, Neo will continue to strategically position itself as a leader in blockchain for years to come. 

For more information about this innovative blockchain check out its website.

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