Request for proposals (RFPs)

As the Worldcoin ecosystem continues to expand, we support the growing community through targeted grantmaking opportunities and open calls for applications addressing specific focus areas for sustainable growth.

25k

Up to 25k WLD

01.

World ID Protocol Level

Research & Development

  • Iris Code zero-knowledge machine learning (zkML): Calculation of iris codes from images in ZK proof. Allows for self-custody upgrades of iris codes.
  • Face authentication zero-knowledge machine learning (zkML): Calculation of face embedding and comparison with the embedding from the Orb can reduce trust assumptions on the client.
  • MPC uniqueness check: Performing the uniqueness check on multiple parties increases decentralization and increases privacy for the user.
  • Merkle proof private information retrieval (PIR): Clients need to query the Merkle inclusion proof in order to generate a World ID proof. Correlation between other metadata could leak the identity of the user.
  • Mobile prover performance: World ID wallets are inclusive and support very low end devices. This could either mean improving the performance of the current library or benchmarking or implementing alternative proof systems.
  • IrisHash: Anonymizing iris codes or (face) embeddings.
  • Batch verification of World ID proofs: Aggregation of individual proofs to bring down on-chain verification costs.
  • Nullifiers for smart contract wallets: “Social recovery” for nullifiers.
  • Proof of Personhood impact research: Impact analyses on Proof of Personhood in society and recommendations to improve user safety and privacy.

Continuous Robustness

  • Hosting Indexers (e.g. Tree Availability Service): Read replica alternatives.
  • Bridges to EVM chains: World ID is deployed on Ethereum Mainnet and is bridged to Optimism. The existing state bridge relayer makes it very easy to support other EVM chains. This could entail hosting state bridge relayer or deploying verification contracts to other chains.
  • Bridges to non-EVM chains. There should also be non-EVM chains supported (e.g. Starknet). This could entail shipping support in the relayer or the verification contract on-chain or implementing completely different approaches.

Explorers and visualization

  • Merkle tree explorer. World ID already operates as a semi-zkRollup. We can embrace this further by adding a block explorer and other introspection / visualization tools of the network.
  • Orb overview / analytics. Ideally good enough for crowd sourced fraud analysis.
  • Worldcoin data dashboards / visualizations / analytics.

02.

Hardware

Orb development

  • Firmware: Similar to modern consumer electronic devices, continuous updates can improve security, functionality and stability. Concrete examples include the following:
    • Spoof detection: Continuous improvement of spoof detection algorithms can help raise the security bar
    • Orb firmware verifiability: Adding the capability for orb provenance verification through the user agent to the Orb.
  • Hardware Development: While the current version of the Orb enables the scaling of the network, future versions can improve design, hardware security and cost.
    • Industrial Design: Designing future versions of the Orb
    • Hardware security: Improving tamper mechanisms further.
  • Alternative Orb (hw + sw): Explore alternative and novel Orb designs improving on existing devices.
  • Signed camera: Open camera module for creating signed images and streams that could be used in future generations of the Orb in order to allow for further decentralization of the supply chain.

Orb supply decentralization

  • Orbs Factory and Production: Support for both new and existing factories to produce Orbs, from helping to cover initial production costs to expansion with increasing demand.
  • Distribution: Support for Orb distributors increasing the resilience of the Orb supply network.

Security Testing

To continuously improve the security of the verification of World IDs, the corresponding infrastructure (Orb hardware, Orb firmware, anti-spoofing algorithms, app, operator app) should be continuously audited.

03.

User agent

Infrastructure

  • TxSitter: Different implementations or contributions to the existing version. 
  • TxBundler: Different implementations or contributions to the existing version. Also running it as an alternative node in the context of ERC4337 bundlers.
  • Network Traffic Anonymizer: All communication between the User Agent and other services should run through network level anonymization in order to reduce the risk of metadata leakage.  

Mobile Client

  • Alternative wallets: Implementation of an independent World ID wallet implementing Wallet Kit. This could also include claiming the WLD grants.
  • Safe recovery infrastructure: On and off-chain recovery solutions for Safe smart contract wallets.
  • Wallet Kit: Contributions to Wallet Kit.

04.

World ID Applications

Voting.

Without proof-of-personhood the main decentralized voting methods are either token-based or reputation-based. Each of these creates opportunities for bad actors to game the system and gain more influence than they should. PoP allows for one-person-one-vote and quadratic voting (among others).

  • Quadratic voting. Here the deliverable is a World ID based implementation of quadratic voting. Simplest approach is sqrt(token_balance), but different cost functions and voting-specific balances are worth exploring (which is truer to the original paper).
  • Private trustless collusion resistant voting. It is surprisingly hard to build a perfect voting model, resistant to things like bribing. MACI made good progress here. How does this integrate with World ID? Note: answer could be trivial.
  • Trustless scalable voting infrastructure. The cost of participation for voting should be negligible to maximize participation. For this reason it is often done mostly off-chain (e.g., Snapshot). It should be possible to do this as an L3 using ZKPs for integrity.

Bot resistant social media.

Help reimagine social media through proof-of-personhood by designing more innovative reputation systems, spam accounts and scammers, game theory and cryptography for message authentication and privacy preservation.

Digital alternatives to advertisements.

Online marketing is currently mostly limited to advertisement. In the analogue world coupons and free samples are also popular methods. These currently don’t work online because they are easily abused by sybils. Use proof-of-personhood to solve this.

Universal Basic Income.

A key motivation for solving proof-of-personhood is to create the technical infrastructure that will enable UBI. But an effective UBI program will require sound system design. This is a very large design space encompassing many fields, including economics, politics, philosophy and sociology. The optimal end state is not clear a priori. Nor are the criteria for assessing success. Thinking from a range of disciplines, as well as experimentation, is needed to help the community have a clearer picture for where this could lead.

Governance

With World ID, we have the ability to provably move beyond simple coin voting and genuinely open up the nascent design space for novel governance systems. Through increased experimentation, we can better explore facets of community-based public goods funding, decentralized protocol development and maintenance, improved methods of privacy preservation as well as more robust DoS protection and reputation systems. We are supportive of ongoing research and the MVP implementations to explore novel and existing governance designs.

05.

Operations

Operations in the context of Worldcoin refers to the "analog world" allowing people to get their World IDs verified. A primary participant are Orb Operators i.e. independent entrepreneurs and the organizations around the world who provide Orbs in physical locations.

  • Bringing Orbs to New Countries: Using best practices from other countries, introduce Orb operations to new Operators and organizations to new jurisdictions.
  • Operator Academy: Create educational material and ongoing support to facilitate new Operator onboarding.
  • In-person Auditing: Support for detecting and preventing malicious actors.
  • Novel Tools: Improve existing hardware equipment and software tools for the global community of Orb Operators.