JB is lead developer at Kleros. An engineer with a strong background in business and technology, he is currently leading the development efforts for Kleros 2.0.
This is part of a series of articles "Meet the Team" where you can learn more about the members of the team that is building Kleros.
Hi JB, tell us a bit about your background... How did you start working in technology?
I'm originally from France and, as far as I can remember, I have always been involved with computers and with building stuff. When I was in middle school, I had a very old computer that I got from my father. It was with a monochrome monitor running MS-DOS without Windows.
In high school, I got some electronic lab equipment (oscilloscope, function generator, UV light and etching solution to make printed circuit boards) to build robots. My first languages were QBasic and Pascal.
Since the early days, it was quite clear for me I would become an engineer. So I joined an engineering school.
While I was studying, I participated in an exchange program in South Korea for a semester and ended up staying there for two years. After graduation, I decided to stay in the Asia/Pacific region. I worked for trading companies and then also lived for while in the Netherlands.
In 2011, while I was living there, I was hired by a Hong Kong fund to build quantitative trading strategies. That's what I was doing before joining Kleros.
And how was your first contact with the blockchain?
I started following blockchain around 2013. The technology blew my mind and I saw its potential fairly quickly. When Ethereum launched, it was fairly easy for me to relate to it because of its programmability. So I started teaching myself Solidity in 2017.
The first time I heard about Kleros was in the summer of 2020. Back then, I was seriously wondering if Ethereum would survive. Most people were thinking of blockchain almost exclusively from a DeFi perspective.
After working for so long in trading, it was refreshing to see that Kleros had a non-finance use case.
I was also impressed by the credentials of the project, the fact that it was endorsed by the French government and the European Union. By looking at the white paper, one could see that the project had a strong academic background.
By then, I was having doubts about crypto. The ICO period had been very misleading for many people and I was wondering whether the space had been captured by opportunists. So, when I saw that Kleros was hiring I sent my application.
It was the only crypto project to which I applied.
What is your position at Kleros?
I'm lead developer and currently mostly busy with Kleros 2.0. I coordinate a team of developers who are specialized in different aspects of the stack. And also with our research team to have our research transformed into specs for our products.
What do you like to do in your free time?
For years, I used to go to the gym everyday. I also like contact sports like Krav Maga, Muay Thai and MMA. Also swimming and going to the beach on weekends. And trail running and spartan races. This is a kind of obstacle race that requires lots of body strength as it includes rope climbing and carrying heavy objects.
How do you imagine the future of Kleros?
Full of integrations and cross-chain. I imagine it will be the first name people associate with dispute resolution and curation. I would be very proud if Kleros and the different products in its ecosystem can provide enough rewards for participants to make a living from their work in the protocol.
If people around the world can make a living from being jurors in Kleros, by curating profiles in Proof of Humanity, by translating texts in Linguo or working in other Dapps from the ecosystem, this would mean we have built something useful for the world.
Want to get in touch with JB? Following him on Twitter! @JayBuidl