Human-centric Protocol Engineer

Role Overview

Overview

We have an open position for a human-centric protocol engineer who can research, survey, design, and analyze protocols which fuse practical feasibility, cryptoeconomic security, and a deep consideration of the social and cultural contexts in which technology is used and how it affects the communities which make use of it. This role covers protocols from decentralised proof-of-humanity and decentralised UBI all the way to protocols for social key recovery and liquid democracy web-of-trust.

The primary project of Heliax is the Anoma protocol (implemented in Rust). Anoma is self-contained, self-sovereign and capture resistant, enabling private, asset-agnostic cash and private coordination among any number of parties. In addition to Anoma, Heliax works on open-source projects which are part of the Anoma ecosystem, including but not limited to research in cryptographic libraries such as the MASP, Plonk or Ferveo (written in Rust), and tools for high assurance validity predicates and arbitrary zero-knowledge circuits (Juvix, written in Haskell).

Heliax is a remote-first public goods lab which researches, develops, deploys, and maintains open-source protocols & mechanisms designed to serve the everyday needs of humanity. Using this, we build vertically integrated open-source products and networks that form coherent open systems which are capable of acting as an alternative to existing exploitative paradigms. With team members located around the world, our work culture is characterized by open-allocation, where team members have a high degree of freedom and autonomy in choosing when to work, what to work on, and whom to work with.

Responsibilities

  • Conduct research surveys of existing design approaches to protocols in the areas of human-centric interaction, e.g. decentralised proof-of-humanity, social key recovery, etc.
  • Talk directly to involved communities “on the ground” who will be using these protocols on a day to day basis and determine if the designs satisfy their needs
  • Evaluate deployed protocols and impacts thereof to assess whether protocols are serving the best interests of the communities using them
  • Analyze protocols regarding properties such as practical feasibility, user-friendliness, security, privacy, and scalability
  • Design protocols or alter protocols to satisfy desired properties
  • Fleshing out how protocols should be realized in practice
  • Assist developers in implementations of protocols

Qualifications

  • Basic understanding of blockchain technologies, cryptographic technologies, and associated research principles
  • Experience with protocol design either through published work in academia or through personal projects
  • Background in some of the following fields: applied cryptography, economics, computer security, mathematics, art, social science
  • Good communication skills (both written and verbal)

Bonus Qualifications

  • Having been involved in a project all the way from design to implementation
  • Coding skills are welcome (in particular Rust)
  • Familiarity with software architecture

Misc

  • Competitive compensation in a negotiable mix of salary and equity.
  • Remote or local (Zürich/Zug, Berlin). When remote, preferred if mostly located within (+/- 7 hours) Central European time zones.
  • Ideally someone who enjoys nature and hiking 🏔️.