Understand App Mining

This section explains App Mining, a program for developers. For Blockstack, App Mining is a crucial factor in the growth of both blockchain applications and users.

What is App Mining?

Traditionally the term mining in cryptocurrency refers to the process of contributing compute resources to the network and earning a reward. In the Blockstack Ecosystem, instead of just mining through computation, developers mine by building apps, and the Blockstack community funds them simply for being pioneers in the emerging Blockchain software market.

Blockstack believes app mining represents a revolution in app funding, allowing small teams to bootstrap without advertising or venture capital. Each month, qualifying apps compete for funding. Qualified apps are evaluated and ranked by expert app reviewers. The better your app, the higher payout you earn. App mining is a new mining model that is continuously evolving and improving based on community feedback.

How apps are reviewed and ranked

Blockstack uses the third-party reviewers:

  • Awario
  • TryMyUI
  • Internet Labs.

These reviewers are independent, and generally rely on their own proprietary data and insights to generate rankings.

After the reviewer-partners generate reviews and scores, Blockstack uses Z-scores and Theta scores to standardize the scores across application categories. Blockstack worked with a team of Ph.D. game theorist and economists from Princeton and NYU to put together a ranking algorithm which is fair and resistant to abuse.

Read more about how reviewers score your app and how your app ranking is calculated.

Determining how much an app is paid

For each App Mining cohort, there is a determined “pot” of total earnings that will get paid to apps. For the Alpha run, App Mining paid a total of $25,000 USD. However, in December 2018, App Mining began paying $100,000 USD each month, with earnings paid out in Bitcoin.

The top app gets paid 20% of the total pot. So, for a pot of $100k, the top app receives $20,000 USD. The next app gets paid 20% of the remaining pot. The remaining pot is $80k, and 20% of that is $16,000. This process continues until every app has been paid.

Here is a chart that visualizes the decay in rewards, depending on rank:

This first release of App Mining uses the initial version of our ranking and payout mechanism. Blockstack has taken care to be thoughtful and fair, but things may change as we learn more and get feedback from the community. Please let us know what you think by commenting in our forum or by emailing us at hello@app.co!

The ranking and payout mechanisms are under constant review and are documented at the app mining’s github repository.