We’re excited to share with you our updated roadmap leading up to the launch of the Presearch mainnet, later in 2021.
Before we continue, we wanted to thank our amazing community members for supporting us through the launch of the decentralized search engine testnet as we move toward going live with mainnet. We appreciate all of your input and contributions to help improve the platform.
You can read our May 2021 development progress update to learn what our small but mighty dev team has accomplished over the last 4 months.
The Road Ahead
In order to realize the mainnet launch vision, we have a number of important systems that need to be revamped, as well as some improvements to implement before we can push all of Presearch’s growing traffic to a user-node-powered network that provides fast, reliable, high-quality results to searchers.
There will be some UI improvements along the way, as well as a transition to the Presearch.com domain. Web3 wallet functionality and a token bridge to combat high Ethereum gas costs. We’re finally reworking the user levels (RVS) system that so many of our members dislike (understandably), and we’re setting ourselves up to reduce the withdrawal threshold and make it easier for people to withdraw PRE. Node operators will likely notice better response times due to a number of factors, including regional gateway servers, and higher, more consistent rewards as the network goes live and nodes begin handling the project’s growing production traffic.
It’s a lot of work, but we’ve got it mapped out, our team is committed and growing - we’ve added new dev team resources at the start of May, and we’re planning to add additional dev resources in the coming months - and with our invaluable community members to support us (thank you!), we feel confident about what we can do over the next 4 months.
To learn about the specific projects we’re undertaking; what they entail, and why they matter, please read on…
Due to the complexity of setting Presearch as your default search engine on mobile, we have decided to launch iOS and Android mobile browser apps. This will significantly enhance the mobile search experience, and also incorporates some great privacy-preserving and ad blocking features that greatly improve the browsing experience, reduce battery consumption and save you time while you surf the web. The iOS version is available on Testflight already, and the Android version is now in development. We expect to have both in app stores in June.
With the incredibly high Ethereum gas fees associated with blockchain transactions (today the cost to send a PRE transfer reached $65), it’s become uneconomical for the project to cover gas costs for on-demand transfers. The current manual mechanism of enabling users to expedite withdrawals by sending gas payments, confirming via email, etc., is archaic and not the experience we want for our members. By implementing web3 functionality, users will be able to request a withdrawal, connect their MetaMask wallet (or other web3 wallet) and pay the fees directly, eliminating the project as a bottleneck that hampers the experience of earning, purchasing and withdrawing PRE from the platform.
Replace Reward Verification System (RVS)
The current RVS System is outdated and no longer reflects our best thinking on how to combat abuse. The current ‘User Level’ system compares each users’ search patterns to known patterns of those who search solely to accumulate tokens, and then assigns a confidence score (user level) to their account. This score then determines how many PRE are required for a user to be able to withdraw their PRE tokens.
The new model will be more of a passive model, focused on limiting the potential liabilities using mechanisms that are less subjective and are also more difficult to automate against. Combined with the Search Rewards 2.0 initiative, this should result in a system with minimal to no friction for normal Presearch users going forward.
The primary objectives of these changes are to mitigate against abuse while maintaining a positive relationship with our members.
Search Rewards 2.0
The current rewards system has been engaging, but is vulnerable to abuse and necessitated the development of the Rewards Verification System (RVS) that is one of the biggest causes of negativity around the project. Additionally, because it is a per-action reward model, it incentivizes people to search more (and even enter bogus queries at times), which is not ideal from an audience quality standpoint. The current model also does not reward those who are taking extra initiative besides just searching.
The new model is being designed to overcome these challenges by paying active users a base reward, and we are looking at ways that we can enable users to level up to increase their reward potential by staking tokens, referring others to the project, staking keywords, and operating user nodes amongst other things.
This should also help solve some challenges with the referral system and how we reward those who refer new members to Presearch, as we won’t require the same lengthy delay to prove that a user is a genuine referral.
In addition to these more technical changes, we are working on ways to make rewards even more engaging to keep Presearchers interested in earning rewards.
After hours of research into the options to facilitate token withdrawals through side chains and token bridges, we are preparing to implement a token bridge using Binance Smart Chain to enable the project to tap into low fees, an active community of developers, and alignment with the Ethereum blockchain toolset, not to mention the growing BSC DeFi opportunities open to any projects who integrate on that chain.
This will open up the doors for the project to support multiple chains, and we envision someday having versions of PRE on several major blockchains that enable the project to align with multiple large communities of supporters associated with each chain’s ecosystem.
Practically speaking, when a user looks to process a withdrawal or deposit, they will choose which chain they would like to use and will be provided with the appropriate information to complete their transaction, similar to how many exchanges now support multiple chains for common tokens like USDT and USDC.
Smart Node Routing Based On Performance
In order to put production traffic on the testnet (or user nodes in production), we need the ability to keep the end-user experience fast and stable. To do this, we need to use our measurements of node reliability to route to the best nodes to enhance the customer experience. We will also implement an ability for different nodes to handle different search providers to avoid “all or nothing” or “partial results” scenarios we sometimes have today which reward some failure scenarios and occasionally penalize nodes doing more work. Ultimately, the goal is to optimize both the value of the work done by each node and the quality and speed of the end-user experience.
Begin Testing Production Traffic On User Nodes
Once the Smart Node Routing is in place, we’ll begin shifting some traffic from the current centralized mainnet network over to the decentralized user nodes to identify potential issues and load test the node network. This testing will be an iterative process as we gear up for the final mainnet launch.
Presearch Engine Autoscaling
We have some remaining work to finalize to ensure fully-automated management of web servers and rebalancing of nodes and gateways based upon traffic and failure/recovery scenarios. This work will automate away the most annoying and repetitive ops and on-call work that slows the dev team down every week, and it will enable the network to scale automatically without any manual intervention by the Presearch dev team.
In order to make the platform faster for global users, we need the ability to have distributed nodes that node operators can connect to, minimizing latency between servers and providing faster responses to searchers.
All traffic currently runs through a single gateway location in North America, which impacts performance for other international users. Additionally, it does not facilitate searchers maintaining their searches within a single country or region, which would be ideal from a legal and privacy standpoint.
Finally, we want a geographically decentralized network of nodes, but currently node operators outside of North America see much higher latency on their nodes and are penalized. With the rollout of geographically-distributed gateways, we will overcome all of these obstacles to provide optimal in-region node operator and searcher experiences.
Launch Of Presearch.com Domain
This update will see us migrate from the current Presearch.org domain name to the more marketable domain name, Presearch.com. This should help the project significantly as it will continue to build our credibility while minimizing traffic loss due to people not remembering that it’s a .org instead of a .com.
Integrate Engine Into Presearch.com And UI Streamlining
This project involves migrating the Presearch Engine search results page from the current standalone engine.presearch.com domain to the same presearch.com domain that searches originate on. At the same time, we will introduce additional subdomains for account management (account.presearch.com) and token management (wallet.presearch.com), as well as standardize the platform navigation and ensure that all common elements are consistent in look and language.
Migration Of User Nodes To Mainnet
After we’ve completed tests of all new systems and confirmed that traffic shifted over to user nodes is performing as expected, then we’ll be ready to migrate all users, including those currently using Dsearch.com, over to the newest version of Presearch, powered by decentralized user nodes.
Mainnet will officially be launched!
We are so excited to get mainnet out, and it will be the culmination of years of hard work and tons of community support!
What Comes Next After Mainnet?
Once we’ve launched on mainnet, then we’ll move on to some more really exciting projects to help us grow the network, improve the user experience, and continue to build out the decentralized search platform and indexes. We’re excited to also share this longer-term roadmap with you in an upcoming post!
Thanks to our community members for your support. It is appreciated!