Learn Coin Protocol High Level Specification

The Learn Coin protocol enables verifiable and auditable multi-sig resumes.

This post will serve as a rolling specification. [Learn more] about this decision.

There are two major cryptographic constructs referenced in this spec.

  1. NFT-L (Non Fungible Tokens of Learning) – can be thought of as a certificate of mastering a skill. See Deep dive of the NFT-L specs.
  2. Learn Coins (ERC-20 token) – this is the medium of exchange on the Learn Coin protocol. More details about the minting process of Learn Coins can be found here.

With that, we’re ready to dive into the functioning of the economy. There are 5 stages to how the economy progresses.

1. Teacher launches a course

What :

The teacher will announce saying they are running a course. This would include information like what they are teaching, what is going to be the outcome and what is the maximum size of the class. The teacher also defines a course pool that the community can fund. A portion of this is the pay to the teacher, and the rest is a reward for the learners for completing the course.

They will also specify what NFT-Ls the learners should hold to get access to this course.

Why :

The announcement is to attract learners. They would make the course lucrative by teaching in-demand courses and keeping the class sizes small and exclusive.

Learners who hold the said NFT-L get priority access, thus the teacher is able to attract able learners to join the course.

2. Learners enroll

What :

Learners enroll by optionally staking one of the following

  1. An NFT-L from one of the pre-requisite courses
  2. Learn Coins to signal they are serious about doing this course

Why :

The larger the stake, more likely the teacher is to pick them. The teacher would want only serious learners to be a part of the course. After all, there are only a fixed number of seats in that course.

The amount the learner will stake will be based on a judgement that balances the following.

  1. The amount of money the learner is willing to risk if she/he is not able to complete the course
  2. How badly she/he wants to participate in the course

3. Community funds the pool

What :

The community members will now come forth and fund each of the courses they want to back. They may start with a small amount and top it up as the course progresses.

Why :

The members who funded the course get priority access to the learners and their performance that graduated in the course. More someone funds, the earlier they get access to the graduates as compared to the others.

Companies may use this as a hiring pipeline.

4. Course is Conducted

What :

The course is conducted using open platforms. The content like shared videos, chats etc are publicly stored on a IPFS.

Towards the end of the course, the teacher issues NFT-Ls to learners who have successfully completed the requirements.

Why :

All the courses will be auditable and verifiable. Anyone can go look up the history of an issued NFT-L to see how the learner learnt, what they did as a part of that course etc. This builds trust and punishes poorly run courses.

A curation marketplace can be set up on this data to index & search for learners based on their participation in the course, like LinkedIn skill search. This will also initiate competition among teachers to run the best course, because the better their course is run, better the search traffic and hence better their earnings.

[Coming soon: Curation Markets]

5. Interested community members notified

What :

The community members, companies including, are notified upon successful reward of the NFT-L. This is done on the application layer. The funders are notified before the NFT-L is issued on the blockchain.

Why :

This gives the funders an incentive to fund the course before it ends. So that they get access to the best graduates before anyone else. More the company is eager to hire from a particular course, more it’ll fund the course to get an edge over the others.

The time at which a funder gets access is exponentially proportional to the difference in funding amount with respect to others. More the funding, earlier you get access as compared to others.


“Doesn’t matter how beautiful your incentive structures are, doesn’t matter how smart you are, if it doesn’t agree with social dynamics – it is wrong.” – Not Richard Feynman

All of this is being put into a consumer facing product atop the above metioned specification – called Questbook. If Learn Coin is an innovation on the protocol layer, Questbook is an innovation on the application layer.

Governance & Future Work

Detailed discussion of [governance can be seen here].

Proof of stake

The protocol will be implemented using a L2 layer Proof of Stake consensus. Learn Coins will also serve as the governance token.

Todo : more details.

Open Source

All the data will be publicly available using a public git repository. Bounties made available for sourcecode contributions.

Todo : github repos

Open Data

All the data generated will be made available to watch-tower nodes to implement custom logic and innovate on the application layer.

Todo : Data structures and APIs

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