What is Worldcoin? ChatGPT's Sam Altman's Ethereum-based crypto venture
Worldcoin, the controversial iris-scanning cryptocurrency venture led by ChatGPT's Sam Altman has teamed up with Ethereum Layer 2 Optimism.
The San Francisco-based project, established in 2019 as a prototype for powering universal basic income, has announced an operational shift by transitioning from Polygon to Ethereum's Layer 2 Optimism.
Worldcoin's applications, including the World App wallet and World ID — a privacy-focused decentralised identity protocol enabling sign-ins to various platforms like websites, mobile apps, and web3 dApps — are slated for migration from Polygon (MATIC-USD) to Optimism.
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This move is a part of a larger partnership with the Ethereum-based Optimism Collective. Ethereum Layer 2 Optimism (OP-USD) is a technology that increases Ethereum's transaction speed and lowers transaction fees.
"With more than 1.6 million sign-ups in beta and 500,000+ monthly active World App users, the deployments on the Optimism mainnet will expand access and help Worldcoin reach a values-aligned ecosystem of developers and users," the Worldcoin Foundation said in an announcement.
World ID & World App are coming to the @OptimismFND Mainnet 🔴https://t.co/0utgzeWihY
— Worldcoin (@worldcoin) May 11, 2023
What is Worldcoin?
Worldcoin is backed by venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz and co-founded by OpenAI chief executive Sam Altman. It is meant to help the world adjust to the possibility of mass-unemployment brought about by AI automating away millions of jobs.
It aims to create a global digital currency that is distributed to everyone in the world as a universal basic income.
However, to gain access to the new cryptocurrency and its monetary system, users must scan their iris — controversially giving Worldcoin access to potentially billions of individual biometric data profiles from across the planet.
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The iris scan is meant to ensure that people only receive their designated distribution.
“Worldcoin is building the world’s largest identity and financial network as a public utility, giving ownership to everyone,” he project said.
The Worldcoin Foundation added: "We aim to create universal access to the global economy regardless of country or background, accelerating the transition to an economic future that welcomes and benefits every person on the planet.
Worldcoin is not available to use at present, it is still in its development phase.
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