Esteban Ordano Decentraland Web3 DAO Argentina Infosys Google

GRTiQ Podcast: 69 Esteban Ordano

Today I’m speaking with Esteban Ordano, Co-Founder of Decentraland, the world’s first-ever virtual world owned by its users. And as most listeners will also recognize, Decentraland has been a user of The Graph since the very early days.

Esteban is extremely smart and is highly respected in the Web3 ecosystem. During our interview, Esteban shares a fun perspective on many great topics, such as the origins of Decentraland, why he moved from working at Google in Web2 into building in Web3, the importance of decentralization, the why it often seems Argentina is one of the Web3 capitals of the world!

The GRTiQ Podcast owns the copyright in and to all content, including transcripts and images, of the GRTiQ Podcast, with all rights reserved, as well our right of publicity. You are free to share and/or reference the information contained herein, including show transcripts (500-word maximum) in any media articles, personal websites, in other non-commercial articles or blog posts, or on a on-commercial personal social media account, so long as you include proper attribution (i.e., “The GRTiQ Podcast”) and link back to the appropriate URL (i.e.,[episode]). We do not authorized anyone to copy any portion of the podcast content or to use the GRTiQ or GRTiQ Podcast name, image, or likeness, for any commercial purpose or use, including without limitation inclusion in any books, e-books or audiobooks, book summaries or synopses, or on any commercial websites or social media sites that either offers or promotes your products or services, or anyone else’s products or services. The content of GRTiQ Podcasts are for informational purposes only and do not constitute tax, legal, or investment advice.



We use software and some light editing to transcribe podcast episodes.  Any errors, typos, or other mistakes in the show transcripts are the responsibility of GRTiQ Podcast and not our guest(s). We review and update show notes regularly, and we appreciate suggested edits – email: iQ at GRTiQ dot COM. The GRTiQ Podcast owns the copyright in and to all content, including transcripts and images, of the GRTiQ Podcast, with all rights reserved, as well our right of publicity. You are free to share and/or reference the information contained herein, including show transcripts (500-word maximum) in any media articles, personal websites, in other non-commercial articles or blog posts, or on a on-commercial personal social media account, so long as you include proper attribution (i.e., “The GRTiQ Podcast”) and link back to the appropriate URL (i.e.,[episode]).

The following podcast is for informational purposes only. The contents of this podcast do not constitute tax, legal, or investment advice. Take responsibility for your own decisions, consult with the proper professionals and do your own research.

Esteban Ordano (00:18):

I think it took me like 10 to 20 minutes to be like in love with the original theme with the idea of The Graph.

Nick (00:25):

Welcome To the GRTiQ Podcast. Today I’m speaking with Esteban Ordano, co-founder of Decentraland, the world’s first ever virtual world owned by its users. As most listeners will also recognize Decentraland has been a user of The Graph since the very early days.


 During our interview, Esteban shares a very fun perspective on a lot of great topics such as the origins of Decentraland, why he moved from working at Google in web2 to becoming a builder in web3, the importance of decentralization and why it often seems Argentina is one of the web3 capitals of the world. As always, we began the conversation by talking about Esteban’s background.

Esteban Ordano (01:42):

I come from a small town inside of Argentina and in high school I did one extra year, graduated as a chemistry technician, which is actually kind of like a minor in chemistry or something like that.


Afterwards I moved to Buenos Aires where I studied software engineering at Institute of Technology called Bueno Aires, Bueno Aires Institute of Technology. Did a couple of internships in India at a company called Infosys. In the States at Google a couple of times, but decided that the corporate environment wasn’t quite for me. So I started a startup, didn’t work out for me, and then I moved on to work as a software consultant in the blockchain industry, which at the time was nearly nonexistent. But then things started to pick up and then I went full life on Decentraland.

Nick (03:00):

Well, I’m interested in this move from chemistry technician into software and technology. What was that path like for you to make that move?

Esteban Ordano (03:09):

I’ve always been very curious about computers and programming, but in the high school I went to, I only have three choices and the chemistry has always been super interesting to me. Physics and all the natural sciences. I wanted to continue studying economics. I guess that eventually with him getting into crypto, I satisfy that curiosity. But by my last year I got a scholarship at this university, so I went for it.

Nick (03:51):

I know that Argentina has a very well-placed and engaged web3 community there. What can you share with listeners about the attitudes and opinions of the people of Argentina towards web3 and crypto?

Esteban Ordano (04:05):

I think in general, the population of Argentina is a few years ahead of the rest of the world in understanding inflation and understanding economic measures and why are they taken and how does it affect their day-to-day lives. When my parents were expecting me, there was a period of hyperinflation in Argentina, and they always told me that the moment they got their wages and they spent it on diapers because it was a good way to save. And when I was 12 years old, approximately, we had a huge devaluation in Argentina, and all of a sudden your money was worth a third of what it used to be. So all those sudden impacts on the economy alter your way of life in a very deep way. So that’s why we get a lot of cumulative knowledge and a lot of understanding of the effects, both in the macro level because you somewhat understand why those decisions are being taken.


Usually they don’t benefit you if you’re a normal person. So that was my relationship with huge economic measures being so pervasive in your day-to-day life. And that’s for most of our Argentinians, the same case. When crypto came along, we understood this a lot in a more natural way because we’re always thinking, oh, what if this happens and the government takes this decision because it will be the best for the country or wherever, but my position may not be the best in that scenario, so I better hedge my bets in this way or this other. And that combines very well with the beginnings of crypto economic thought and in general with this adversarial thinking about, well, this can blow up any moment or is this really safe? And really going into the details and understanding what’s good for you, what’s good for your society, what’s good for your environment, what’s good for everyone else.

Nick (06:52):

If we could go back in time for you personally, when did you first become aware of crypto and what were some of your original impressions?

Esteban Ordano (07:01):

I remember reading about it on Hacker News a couple of times. I think that the time it really caught my eye was when maybe there was a flashy headline saying something like One Bitcoin is now $1. That’s when I started to read the white paper, and it was very interesting. I thought that it could work, but I never thought that it was going to become popular. I thought that I had always thought that it was going to be a niche thing, but then somebody else started to mention it, how it was starting to being picked up to for, I think it was the WikiLeaks campaign or something like that. And I thought, okay, this could actually work and this could actually get adoption by a mainstream audience, not just technical minds or technical people. So I doubled down on it and found a bunch of friends from college that were also into it, and we started to explore it on a deeper level and to work with it.

Nick (08:23):

Well, prior to working with it and getting full-time into the space, you as you mentioned, worked at places like Infosys and Google, which are very well recognized names. What was the experience like for you working and being a builder at those two companies, kind of typical web2 companies and how it’s different from what you’re doing now in web3?

Esteban Ordano (08:45):

Well, for me it was a learning experience and it was only an internship, but both in Infosys and at Google, I guess that you get the sense of how it will be to be a full-time employee there. I was very curious about the emphasis about how is it to live in India. This internship was in Bangaluru and I really wanted to get to know India and this was my opportunity to go there. The amount of bureaucracy or how you get to gain or organize such a vast amount of people, and now I’m talking about both Google or Infosys, in order to align all the incentives and the will of so many people in towards a greater good has been really fascinating to, fascinating to see from the inside.

Nick (09:55):

How do you think working at those two firms informed what you want to do with your career and this move you made into web3?

Esteban Ordano (10:05):

So bureaucracy is one way to scale systems, and I thought that another way to scale societal interests towards some common objective would be automated execution of certain code. But the problem is that you cannot trust code in general because for example, I’m a huge detractor of electronic vote. I think that electronic vote takes away the democratic element of rotation. Suddenly you go from millions of people around your country from being able to audit how many votes were cast because anyone can read or do basic arithmetic, well, most of the people in the country can.


When you switch that over to an electronic voting system, all of a sudden only a few people in your country can actually audit those few people that have the knowledge to go through the source code. So go through the build process of the hardware and not even those who have the knowledge can audit the system because you have to be very careful about the chain of custody of every machine because anyone could insert a USB drive and hack the system or change it for something else, and besides you have some accessibility issues and so on and so forth.


But anyways, I think that my point is that in general, computer systems are not transparent. You cannot really know what is happening inside of the software systems that you’re using every day. Most of the times it always works. That’s the thing, but the problem is the failure most what happens when it doesn’t work or what happens when you get hacked or things like that.


So blockchains for me are a way to have transparent computing in the sense that, my computer and every computer kind of says the same version of the blockchain, the same version of the information because it’s self verifiable information. A blockchain, for example, in Bitcoin, it’s got this amount of hashing power and that hashing power is kind of like a signature for the block. What gives it its validity. So that was for me, really interesting about blockchain technology, how it can bring transparency into information systems, which is something that you don’t get internal with not even a database or software that you are currently using. You hope for the best in most cases, but you cannot really verify at the level of the CPU at the level of the memory what is going on. Maybe if you are magneto from the X-Men, you can see the atoms or whatever, but you will have to be really, really fast.

Nick (13:46):

And that transparency and validation is important in the world wide. There might be listeners that say, well, web2 is good enough, how would you explain that to them?

Esteban Ordano (13:58):

For example, going back to the voting system, our democracy depends on the transparency of that electoral mechanism. So if we are trusting the democracy of the country to a system, that system should be as transparent as possible. It could be a computational system, it could be a traditional paper and pen based system, but you want to ensure that your mechanism to decide in between all the members of society is as transparent as possible to prevent it from skewing towards one side or another. So I think that for this mechanisms of consent or coordination, it’s very useful for it to be transparent because it provides more legitimacy to the system.

Nick (15:03):

Well, I know another thing that’s important to you is this idea of malleable software was an idea that you shared before we started recording. How does that fit into all of this?

Esteban Ordano (15:13):

So my level system is a collective that is focused on having software being more useful to the user by ways of making it easily modifiable. So they have this analogy that software was becoming more and more malleable until we peaked at Excel in the mid 1990s. From then on, all software started to become more rigid and less changeable. Before then, you had most of the users knowledgeable on Unix systems, knowledgeable on source codes, but then you get all this massive inbound interest from mainstream audience and they didn’t know how to code. But most of the utility that we were got out of computational systems came from automating finance for SMBs. Small businesses and Excel or spreadsheets in general have this quality that when I share a file with you, I’m not only sharing the data, but I’m also sharing the logic of how I’m thinking about that data and I can change that logic.


I can add a column, make some extra modification to this program that is the spreadsheet and that has a lot of value. Imagine that if you could change the way your WhatsApp works or change the way the algorithm works on Twitter or Facebook or whatever social network you use. Most of the incentives in web2 are not aligned towards having you own the interface. In fact, they’re aligned against that. They are aligned towards being able to show you more ads. They’re aligned towards extracting as much information from how you use the software, which in turn also helps them to improve the way it works so that they can provide you with better software. So it’s not inherently bad that is currently this way, incentives have made it to be this way, but I think that it’s a local maximum and we can do a much better job out of using computational system, out of using information systems and social networks based on computers that provide us a lot more value in general as a society.


So yeah, my level system is kind of like that. They have a bunch of principles. Mostly your data should always be on your device and software should be as easy to change as possible and the changes that you make. It reminds me a lot to the free software movement of STAMAN in the MIT in the early 1980s, how the user should own whatever software is executing on their computer, should be aware of what is happening, how is the data being shuffled and always have the optionality to change how those information flows exist and are done. How are they useful to you?

Nick (20:33):

Esteban. One of the things that I was most interested in asking you was this journey you’ve personally made from a small town in Argentina into big companies like Google and then all the way into this entrepreneurship in web3. Why did you decide to leave working for large firms and maybe some of the security and opportunities that presented and become an entrepreneur?

Esteban Ordano (20:56):

Well, also I think that it happened. I have always been working on new things, even within these organizations or when working with private companies, I’ve always been skewed towards green grass projects or new initiatives and things like that. And I guess it’s a very personal thing for anybody. I didn’t come up with Decentraland, not with the idea or the name. I was, I always joke that I was the first follower of the idea. And I think it’s just something that kind of happens to you and if you have a really good idea or if you really want to see a change in the world, it’s sometimes both your environment and yourself that get benefit from it.

Nick (21:56):

Well, let’s talk a little bit about Decentraland. So if you can go back in time and just share with listeners the origins of the Decentraland, when the idea was born and what some of the original thinking was to launch it.

Esteban Ordano (22:08):

Yeah, so in the beginning, I remember from college, [inaudible 00:23:18] came to me and she was super excited about this idea. It was a lot fussier in the beginning. Nowadays, I don’t even remember if we wanted to do a simulation or just a very transparent second life using just a blockchain in a very decentralized way. I think it was this idea that you could pick volumes of a space and own them, and then everybody will see what you decided to put in the spaces that you own. And we started to evolve that idea into the grid, created a couple of proof of concepts, and then it sit there for a while until [inaudible 00:23:07], another one of the founders got a VR headset coded the first 3D interface to Decentraland. Up until then, it was just a 2D interface and a couple of months earlier we had gone to Burning Man and we kind of started to see how the Decentraland could be a virtual version of Burning Man, if that’s possible. And later on we started to figure out that this could actually work and decided to go full life on it.

Nick (23:50):

So are you saying part of the origin story of Decentraland is an experience some of the founders had at Burning Man?

Esteban Ordano (23:56):

I think the idea of going into this completely different world to have a reset of who you are or what are the social accepted norms to go from something completely different from your day-to-day life has a lot of value in exploring yourself and exploring your friends and community that you go with towards these experiences.


For me, one thing that I always tell is that by the third day, or fourth day in Burning Man, I had to go buy ice, which is the only thing that you can trade for money in BlackRock City. And I had forgotten where I left my money or whatever. And when I looked at those rectangles with colors and faces and then I was like, whoa, I remember this concept of money and it was a very strange moment. I had not thought it was possible to completely erase a preconception so big as money from your day to day life. And that changed the things a lot for me. And oh, going into I think it’s one of the best art expositions in the world. It’s like a gallery of things that change your perception, change the way you’re seeing life and yeah, it’s a lot of fun.

Nick (25:37):

I’ve heard a lot of interesting stories come out of Burning Man and some people it is a real change for them. Like you said, it changes their paradigm. There might be some listeners that don’t even know what we’re talking about. What is Burning Man and what was its impact on you personally outside of Decentraland?

Esteban Ordano (25:53):

For me, burning Man is an experiment on resetting certain ways from your day-to-day life, resetting some norms of your society. It didn’t start that way, but right now it’s very well established that there are these 10 principles, which is mostly some guidelines towards how to enjoy best the experience and to make the experience best, enjoy it for everybody.


And it’s very basic live no traces or be always accepting people. And the aesthetics are really, I identify very much with the aesthetics of it. It’s kind of like a Mad Max thing. I’m not enough, not well versed enough in English to explain it. I will recommend anybody to try to look at some YouTube video or something, but that that’s probably going to explain the aesthetics a lot better and to read through and the principles because it’s a very interesting social experiment and I was very fortunate to go there and is really the make me think about a lot of things in my life in a different way.

Nick (27:24):

Let’s go back a little bit to Decentraland for a moment, and for listeners that don’t know what it is or how it works, how would you describe what it is?

Esteban Ordano (27:33):

Decentraland is a virtual world, we say owned by its users. I will say that it’s the first completely decentralized virtual 3D experience that doesn’t require a single company to continue existing for the world to continue to exist.


So basically all the code is open source, all the important database entries are on the Ethereum blockchain or on Polygon. And most of the servers are run by the community, run by anybody who wants to run and contribute.


It’s a lot of things. I always joke that Decentraland is kind of like a buzzword project. It’s got NFTs, it’s got a DAO, it’s got a blockchain, it’s got web3, Metaverse. We are missing AI I guess and AR. But when you start to dig into it, you start to realize, oh well it’s one of the most active DAOs out there. And the kinds of questions that are being discussed in the DAO are very interesting because it’s very relatable, right?. It’s not a DeFi protocol where you are trying to adjust the interest rate of swaps. It’s whether we should have data and light in this virtual world. And there are a lot of meta governance questions as well. How many voting power should wearable NFT have compared to a Land NFT? And those are I think are the trickiest and the most important questions and the hardest to get right.


With regards to NFTs, we were cited in year C 7 21 as one of the first NFT projects. I think that we were the first year C 7 21 project that was fully compliant with the standard because it was one of the first upgradeable contracts. I’m only aware of Maker DAO being bold enough to try that before Open [inaudible 00:30:11] is standardized that. So NFTs, DAO, Metaverse, I don’t really like that word, but I guess people say that we are a metaverse and it’s decentralized because I think that’s the future of computation, that’s the future of social networks.


I think that the risks of putting all the data all together into some organizations servers, it’s a liability for them. I think they are trying to, most of the people everywhere in the world, this is a maximum of money. Most of the people are trying to do their best and I think that the way data is being handled in most of these vehicle corporations is the best that they can do actually in order to stay alive and in order to provide as much value for everybody. But it is still a risk. I think that we can do the same. We can add the same value to our society with a different distribution of information and of data in a way that is safer for everybody and in a way that prevents certain abuses of that data.

Nick (31:43):

So you mentioned you don’t particularly like the word metaverse and of course it’s getting a lot of headline attention because companies like Facebook, companies like Disney are creating metaverse like experiences. Why don’t you like that term and how would you contrast what you’re doing at Decentraland with how people understand what Metaverse even is?

Esteban Ordano (32:03):

I like the idea of Metaverse being the next stage of the internet. I like the idea of it being some 3D reincarnation of the web. I guess that’s also why it gets usually aligned with the web3 keyword or buzzword. Both web3 and metaverse are lousy definitions that generate a lot of expectation or a lot of good future positive thought in persons. I think that out of itself it’s valuable. I can definitely see how meta is getting into it or business getting into it. I think it’s awesome to have a breath of originality to have a good positive outlook towards the future and towards the future of the internet. And that’s the part that I like about Metaverse and about web3, the parts that I don’t really like are the Black Mirror risk aspects of the metaverse.


In regards web3 I really don’t like how privacy or selective disclosure is somewhat out of the picture. People talk about serial nourish proofs and about encryption or whatever. But in general, I think that we should start to build this new stage of the internet from the first principles of information was to be [inaudible 00:33:54], information wants to be free. Once I tell you something, it’s going to be really hard for you to forget about it. Consciously or unconsciously that information has entered your brain or whatever.


That is also true with regards to neural networks or AI or the recommendation mechanisms of the systems. Even if I ask you to delete my records from your database, maybe my patterns of behaviors have stayed on there and there are information that will never be completely deleted. But anyways, I think that we as a society don’t really understand all the implications of the information super highway or so I guess that’s how they called the internet in the nineties.


My grandmother was like 19 or 20 years old when Claude Shannon came up with the theory of information paper where he described what a Bit is, what’s the formula for the entropy of information. And that was way too late in the history of humankind. It’s only a couple of generations ago that it happened and nowadays, every five year old knows how many megabytes that they have to uninstall in order to download the new game that just came out or whatever. Our understanding of the accumulation of so many megabytes is it hasn’t been built on a trans generational level and we have things like the right to be forgotten and we have things like the expectation that I can ask you to delete my records from your database, and I think that they are okay as social expectations, but I don’t think that we understand how unnatural it is.


It’s kind of like saying, okay, from New York to Washington, gravity will not exist. And then you see all these people walking around as if gravity was there anyways and you’re like, oh yeah, I’m following the Gravity rules even though it’s not required I do it anyways, or something like that. I don’t think it’s a good analogy. It’s a backwards in some way, but my point is that the natural laws of information go directly against certain uses and certain habits that we have as a society and it’s going to take a while to figure out better social agreements that are closer to the natural laws of information.

Nick (37:13):

You mentioned Black Mirror Risks. I’m not sure I’m familiar with what is meant by that. What is that?

Esteban Ordano (37:18):

Black Mirror is a TV show originated in the UK. It’s a TV show about-a science fiction TV show miniseries. In each episode they pick a subject and they go really deep into it. I think one of my favorite ones is the third episode In the first season, you should binge-watch it one a night is more than enough to take away your sleep.


One of these, I think it was in the later seasons, they explore the idea of living in a completely virtual world and they go really deep into things like, oh, what happens if we have a credit social scoring system? And they show this story of a woman that starts with a really high social scoring system that would allow her to do everything or whatever. Then her score starts to drop and all of a sudden she sees all the backside of the system that was maintaining her privileged way of life. And I think it’s scary how much of that is already happened. So they has already been happening for a couple of decades. It shows that right now in that TV show, they make an app out of that and it’s very graphic and a very well done [inaudible 00:39:04] story.

Nick (39:38):

Let’s go back to Decentraland  a little bit here in The Graph. So Decentraland was one of the first projects for me as I got involved in The Graph ecosystem that I became aware of as a user of The Graph and subgraphs. So how would you tell that early history about that relationship between Decentraland and The Graph?

Esteban Ordano (40:00):

I think it took me 10 to 20 minutes to be in love with the original team with the idea of The Graph. I always had the concept of how you need some indexing system solution. How you need to get all the information from the blockchain and rearrange it in a way that allows you to have better user experiences. At Decentraland we have our own Indexer like custom code. We have many headaches because of that custom system. And when I heard about The Graph and how they were not only solving it for one team but for everybody, I thought that was going to be amazing and it’s really more than meeting the expectations that I had even with all the decentralization ethos that we always had on [inaudible 00:41:02] So we were one of the first adopters of The Graph and it was really awesome to see it come to life.

Nick (41:12):

How would you describe specifically for listeners how Decentraland uses The Graph?

Esteban Ordano (41:17):

So Decentraland uses The Graph to make our user experience faster. Same as with so many other web3 decentralized applications. Usually the way that information is stored on the blockchain is not the optimal way in which you can query it. So The Graph is useful for fetching who the owner of a every land parcel release where you also using The Graph to verify that you own the wearables that your avatar is wearing. So all the wearables in the center and are NFTs that are based on polygon. And we also use The Graph to make the marketplace experience a lot faster. We coded our own marketplace that that’s because we launched it almost at the same time as Open Sea. In that marketplace we were running our own Indexer, we were coding our own Indexer and we’ve always wanted to not run that server and to have that be a decentralized service that any user could run. So The Graph is essential for many pieces of Decentraland and for it to work correctly.

Nick (42:46):

For listeners that may not understand, how important is The Graph as a solution for builders like you? People with a vision for a project or adapt, they want to create and they have an infrastructural solution like The Graph to use ?

Esteban Ordano (42:59):

The graph is so important to Decentraland that I think it will be harder to recover from The Graph like suddenly disappearing, which when we get to the full decentralization stage, we are going to be safe from that. I think that the Decentraland foundation can cease to exist right now and Decentraland will continue to work, but some of the servers that are being run by Edge and Old Northern Edge are a bigger centralization point of failure than the Decentraland team itself. So it’s super critical and super important for Decentraland and I’m really looking forward for the decentralization of that.


It’s so great that The Graph source code is open. That anyone can run and now we’re looking into having every Catalyst, that’s the name that we have for Decentraland content servers. Like anyone who runs a Catalyst will-we’re exploring the idea of they also running a graph [inaudible 00:44:14] so that we start to decentralize and improve the resilience of the system.

Nick (44:21):

What’s your long-term vision for Decentraland? What do you hope that it accomplishes in the world?

Esteban Ordano (44:26):

The mission of Decentraland is to find new economically sustainable ways to power the social networks and the information systems of the future.


I think we are almost at the peak of the advertising revenue model and how it provided us with a lot of value and I think that we can do a lot better than placing ads on everything. I think that similarly to The Graph, the solutions got an element of micropayments and the solutions got an element of curation of the best solutions. The and IA, you can make some parallels between how the [inaudible 00:45:21] stack model is gaining a lot of traction. You can make parallels with how many newspapers have started to switch from paywalls and advertising towards the subscriber model. And I guess that’s the system of interrelations and how we as a society get our news or get our information shifting towards somewhat healthy. But that’s my moral conviction. That advertisement as the blood that makes your product work is probably not enough

Nick (46:08):

For listeners that want to participate in Decentraland to get started in building, what’s the best path to do?

Esteban Ordano (46:15):

First try it out. We have a browser version, we’ve got a desktop version for Windows. Mac version is in beta. If you go to or GitHub, you can probably find where the binary for Mac is. Our documentation is out there and maybe showing our discord or forums and start to get together and meet new people, which is why we started all of this

Nick (46:49):

Esteban, I think the last question I want to ask you is pointing back to something you just said about the importance of decentralization. As you know, some people view the web3 stack is being required to be fully decentralized and there’s others that back off that argument a little bit and say some of it will be decentralized, some of it won’t. Where do you come in on that debate?

Esteban Ordano (47:10):

I think it’s really important that users or organizations have the optionality of running the servers themselves. Whenever you have an information flow that has to happen outside of hardware that you control, you are giving away a control point or a checkpoint or a critical part of the processing of that information to some other party that may not be there tomorrow. So we’ve seen this with a lot of games that were on the cloud and now you cannot play. We’ve seen that with, I don’t know, Google reader for RSS or all the different softwares that have been on the cloud in the past. The fact that you are renting for it to work, it is necessarily inferior to having the ability to run it yourself, to having control over why it works and how it works and the optionality of potentially running it yourself. It’s already a huge game changer.


It’s not like you can run your own Amazon Web Services in your house, but you can run your own The Graph Indexer in your house. Not that you do necessarily, but the optionality of having that control is very empowering for the user. It allows you to, even if this company that is providing you the service shuts down or goes bankrupt, that your business is not going to be in endangered because nobody’s going to be able to run that server that software anymore because it’s closed off. Where even worse than being closed software, it’s behind the firewalls of the company that provides you with that server. So I don’t necessarily tie this two web3, but I think it’s a critical piece for everything blockchain related, for everything that is about the security of your information that is about the availability of the system.


I think the data locality and software locality is one of the key ingredients of the software of the future. And web3, if it’s not runable in your computer, then somebody’s got power over you that well, we might as well go back to web2 because everything works super fine anyways.

Nick (50:21):

Well Esteban, I really appreciate you taking time to answer these questions. We’ve now reached a part in the podcast where I’m going to ask you the GRTiQ 10. These are 10 questions I ask each guest of the podcast every week to help listeners learn something new, try something different or achieve more. So are you ready for the GRTiQ 10?

Esteban Ordano (50:39):

Yes, I’m ready.

Nick (50:51):

What book or articles had the most impact on your life?

Esteban Ordano (50:55):

Just started with a huge one. One single article or book. I think it would be, the [inaudible 00:51:06]. There are many different translations. I like one more than the others, a woman called Ursula. But there are a lot of great books that I will hate to not mention, like the Selfish Gene, the Sovereign Individual [inaudible 00:51:25] Operating Manual for Spaceship Earth. Many more, many. There are many books that I enjoyed and I came back to them after a few years and it’s kind of like a relationship in some way.

Nick (51:40):

Is there a movie or a TV show that you think everybody should be required to watch?

Esteban Ordano (51:47):

I wouldn’t require or force anybody to watch one movie, but I really like the theme on Mr. Robot, although I think it’s a TV show and it’s a little slow for times. And the last time that I remember that the movie made me cry was when I was watching a movie called Cinema Paradiso. It was really touching.

Nick (52:18):

If you could only listen to one music album for the rest of your life, which one do you choose?

Esteban Ordano (52:23):

This is, there’s an Argentinian Rock musician called Luis Alberto Spinetta.. He was way ahead of his time and the music that he played, it’s mostly unknown at in the global scene, but probably because of the cultural isolation from the political scene of Argentina in 1970s. He had a band called Invisible and it was, it’s a masterpiece.

Nick (52:56):

Esteban, what’s the best advice someone’s ever given to you?

Esteban Ordano (52:59):

Breathe. That breathing is the only act that happens involuntarily, but you can make it be as voluntarily, voluntarily as you like. And so even when you think you have no choice, you can always come back to your breath and retake voluntarism and retake the consciousness and the agency of doing things.

Nick (53:33):

What’s one thing you’ve learned in your life that you don’t think most other people know yet?

Esteban Ordano (53:38):

I’m a fan of a concept that the world needs more generalists and less specialists. I think that just knowing three or four principles from most disciplines gets you so much further ahead and you can mix and match things from different disciplines. And that holistic understanding has a lot of compounding effects.

Nick (54:06):

What about life hacks? Is there a life hack you’ve discovered for yourself?

Esteban Ordano (54:09):

Life is too short to spend, it’s surrounded with people you don’t like and I am super surprised about how many people don’t apply that to their work lives

Nick (54:24):

Based on your own life experiences and observations, what’s one habit or characteristic that you think best explains people finding success in life?

Esteban Ordano (54:33):

Showing up. I think it was with Woody Allen said, oh, he, he’s not in favor. I think he got canceled or something, but that doesn’t like inverse ad hominem. That doesn’t make this less true.


Showing app is 80% of success and you should always leave some slack room for randomness in your day-to-day life for things to happen. Just show up and go the extra mile too

Nick (55:11):

And the last three questions, Esteban or complete the sentence type questions. So the first one is, the thing that most excites me about web3 is

Esteban Ordano (55:19):

The thing that most excites me about web3 is that it inspires people to reclaim computability over their own data to make computer systems and social networks more humane and more social, less so mediated by corporations.

Nick (55:44):

And how about this one? Complete the sentence. If you’re on Twitter, then you should be following

Esteban Ordano (55:48):

Willie Wortheimer. I think that’s the funniest account that I’m following. But [inaudible 00:55:56] and Santi Siri are great philosophers and Visioners.

Nick (56:01):

And the final question, I’m happiest when ?

Esteban Ordano (56:05):

I’m happiest when I ship software or products and things that are useful for people with the realization of all the patterns in which I thought this was going to be helpful for somebody and actually seeing that happen. Yeah, it’s makes me so happy.

Nick (56:37):

Esteban Ordano, thank you so much for taking the time and being so generous in answering these questions and introducing more listeners to Decentraland and some of these important thoughts you shared here. If listeners want to follow you or the work you’re doing at Decentraland, what’s the best way to stay in touch?

Esteban Ordano (56:52):

Well, until we get better decentralized alternatives. I’m on Twitter @eordano or on Discord at the Decentraland Discord. You can find it on the Decentraland dot org or [inaudible 00:57:07]



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