Today we are talking with Konstantin Gladych who is the founder and CEO of Atomic Wallet, and co-founder and former CEO of Changelly.
- Atomic Wallet is a universal cryptocurrency wallet where you can secure, exchange and buy over 300 cryptocurrencies and tokens in a single interface.
We’d like to kick things off by asking you a couple of questions regarding your formative years.
1) Firstly, can you tell us the things which interested you the most throughout your childhood and teenage years, and what brought you the most happiness?
I basically have a design systematic thinking, and since childhood, I’ve loved designing things. First, there were construction toys, machines and simple form of aggregators, which, by building them, could develop their functionals. I really had a lot of fun seeing that all those things were whirling and moving! Then, I got my first computer, and found my interest in programming. Of course, in the beginning I only wanted to play games, but next I felt like to create something by myself. At school, we had to ‘communicate’ with computers right at the time when Internet was at an early stage of its popularity, and still to go to the web we needed to connect through modems with cables. I liked the idea that if you had followed all the algorithms, you’ve been able to see and follow conferences, download messages, and all it was in the text format without any adapting to users interfaces and etc. It was really fascinating!
2) Who were your biggest influences growing up, and why did they have such a profound effect on you?
I was always attracted to the idea of globality. The thing that you can literary open any window and talk to any person from all over the world was an actual amusement for me. So, first, I’ve learnt about this from my computer science school teachers. I think they were influencing me a lot.
3) Teenage years are often a turbulent time for many, so on this note, can you name a time which was tough for you, and how you managed to overcome it?
Well, as I have a logical mind, I could take many things much easier than my schoolfellows. Although, my friends and I had some kind of parity regarding school workload: I was in charge of all the technical and mathematical stuff while those were responsible for other disciplines. As for family issues in the adolescent age, can’t say I had some. My family has always been friendly and strong one; thus, maybe even at that age I had minor problems, but was always able to cope with them.
4) If there was some advice you could give young aspiring individuals, advice which you would really have liked to have heard yourself as a young person, what would it be?
Yes, I would definitely advise not to listen to most of the people around you! Those, who only talk, usually don’t mean anything. Just grow knowledge and develop the skills you’re interested in. Find a good teacher/guru to take after, and just follow them. For me, such people were a few programmers and basically pioneers of the technical field. The second advice, maybe to train more. 🙂
We are now going to ask you some questions which will hopefully give our readers something to go on regarding you as a person.
5) Firstly, what are the particular strengths that you feel have made you successful in your field (don’t hold back)?
First of all, persistence and pedantry. Each comma and period are important! Second, communicative skills for sure. To gather people around you, to talk to partners – you need to know how to do it.
6) What would you say is your most controversial opinion as regards to blockchain or the crypto space?
There are many blockchains, of course. As regards to Bitcoin, the most popular one, I’m confused about centralization of its mining power. To change that I think people can invest more in mining in different parts of the world. As of now, I consider that the mining farms mostly gathered in China can be a threat to the stability of the systems (forks, 51% attacks, and etc.). They should be spread all over the globe, there should be more decentralization.
7) In the course of your day you can become under the most ridiculous pressures and stresses, what is your particular way of dealing with this?
I’m used to filter the information. If I see that it’s not that important, I try not to focus on it. Also I prefer to delegate the tasks to my colleagues if I know they’re more qualified in some particular questions than me. If we talk about stressful situations, the rules are so: first, breath out, then, measure risks (mostly, risks for business), next, react with a calm mind. Don’t ever react depending on your emotions.
8) Outside of crypto/blockchain, what is your favorite thing to do?
Apart from crypto, I’m mostly interested in active sports. I really like cycling, hiking and kitesurfing.
We are now going to ask you some creative and humorous questions, and we are sure people will love to see you what you can come up with.
9) What is the most humorous thing you have seen or experienced during your time in the crypto/blockchain space?
I believe the funniest thing here is the communication with users. You often need to explain them many times the same things, then, anyway, they do everything as they prefer to and start blaming you or, oppositely, appreciating you. There were many humorous situations like that! Also sometimes it’s very funny to listen to people involved in performing at the blockchain conferences! Such a joke sometimes.
10) If you somehow managed to meet Satoshi Nakamoto (that is he is a male person in this scenario) on his deathbed, but only had time to ask him one question, what would it be? Bear in mind you don’t have much time at all, so make it a good one.
Good question! Well, I would ask him to make a transaction from the address belonged to him to prove that that person is the Satoshi Nakamoto. I actually think he’s already dead. As we know, the funds, which were mined at the beginning, are held with no movement on the blockchain. So the only way to know if Satoshi is alive is to confirm his transaction.
11) Can you give three policies you'd enact if you became the president of a country tomorrow?
I’m not a politician, I’m an entrepreneur, so I would probably try to give more freedom to the business section. Being particular, as I’m in crypto sphere, why wouldn’t I make Bitcoin as a second national currency? Also, would be beneficial to convert all the passports to blockchain and give people ID numbers or some chip that we can see all their transactions regarding real estate cases, the human identity, and etc. Making such things transparent will help to reduce the ‘army’ of intermediaries in a dialogue between citizens and the state. As of the third act, well, it’s very difficult to say because all countries vary a lot in the development of society. However, I would like to support the idea of automatic machines or rather self driving cars.
Communities are often an important backbone for many crypto/blockchain projects, so we’d now like to get some personal thoughts on the community side of things.
12) What do you feel makes the Atomic Wallet community unique compared to others?
As our product is the wallet, the basic thing of many of our community members’ daily life, we have a very high level of trust. And, as a result of our attempt to fulfill that given trust, we have a quite old community. I know some of the people have been with us from the beginning, so more than a year of using Atomic Wallet by now. The other detail is that our people are quite mature. Those, who use our wallet, have already reached something in their lives. They’re really grown ups.
13) Project aside, what are some other crypto/blockchain communities that you admire and why (this is not an endorsement)?
Yes, I like Monero’s community. Even though it’s a bit toxic with all the crypto anarchists and techno enthusiasts, can’t deny it’s very interesting to talk to them! Moreover, if you get recognised from those people, it means your technical level of understanding crypto sphere and blockchain is pretty high. In this sense, Bitcoin community is competitive, too. The people there are mature, they consistently work on technology and provide a good service that makes Bitcoin the great payment option. As for Ethereum, its community is quite infantile. Although, we surely need to give credits to it. The people make a huge experiment, trying to convert the main financial tools to blockchain. This is very cool!
14) What social-media platform do you like most and why, and are there any improvements which you feel can be made to these platforms for an even better community user-experience?
I use Twitter rather as a source of information, messengers to talk to friends and, yes, Instagram for photos, of course. 🙂 Also I’ve been on Linkedin for quite a long time. At first, I was using it for business purposes, and now, I’m just staying in touch with many influential people there. If to give any suggestions to improve social platforms, I would like to have much transparent rating system. Nowadays, the rating system is mostly based on the amount of connections you have, but it’s not a very strong point because anyone can just randomly add bunch of people, and that’s it. Blockchain technology would be very helpful here as it can show the authority of the person as transparently as it is.
15) With the endgame being mainstream adoption, do you think crypto/blockchain communities will still have an important role to play in a post-adoption environment?
Of course, they will. Although, I believe that the face of some communities will drastically change. For example, the developers community will be the same, it won’t grow much, but it might be divided into a few local and more centralized groups. Speculative communities will be also the same. They don’t play a crucial role in blockchains, maybe being important only as a price booster. However, mass adopted blockchain will create new large communities of people, who will use the technology. If now big blockchains have 10-20 millions people, it will increase till 100-200 millions, and all the posts about Bitcoin on Reddit will either immediately vanish or be hugely spread around.
In our penultimate section we are going to ask you a question regarding Atomic Wallet.
16) What do you feel sets Atomic Wallet apart from your competitors (that is if you have any)?
Of course, we have competitors. It’s needed to have competitors if you do business. As for our advantages, simplicity of using can be the first thing. We understand that many people in crypto are newbies. So it’s important to have a simple interface without any technical difficulties. Our second emphasis is on the reliability and stability – basic functions are needed to work properly. We try to maintain it on a high level. In the case of some issues, our support team works way efficiently. Support service is also significant because we don’t only help with problems but we educate people. We’re missionaries of mass adoption of the technology. The other strong point is that we’re completely open. Whether we tell news on our social channels, whether it’s regarding your funds. Atomic Wallet doesn’t keep users’ crypto. Your keys – your funds. I think it totally matches the basics of blockchain.
Well that just about does it, but before we end this interview we’d like to ask you for something which we believe will say a lot about your belief in the industry, and which may inspire those who are reading.
17) Can you come up with a short argument for our readers on why you feel cryptocurrency and blockchain (or just one) has a bright future?
To be honest, cryptocurrency is a very big experiment. It will be along with fiat money for a long time for sure. For example, considering Bitcoin as the global payment option (now it’s mainly used for transnational payments or investments), I can say it would be much easier to have it on the mass market than tools of governmental institutions. Although, will public blockchain be used in b2b sphere is truly a big question.
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