We asked the team at stake2earn, an Indexer at The Graph, for information about their team, their perspective on the work of Indexers, and their vision for the future of The Graph.
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To help individuals better understand the role of Indexers at The Graph, we interviewed the team at stake2earn (Indexer Profile and Twitter). According to their website, stake2earn is “a professional blockchain validator in POS networks, offering you complete transparency, stability, and security.”
GRTiQ: In your own words, what is the best way to explain the role of Indexers in The Graph ecosystem?
Stake2earn: From our point of view, Indexers play a really important role in The Graph’s ecosystem. Basically, Indexers are providing indexing and query processing services.
In other words: Indexers are the ones doing the hard work. Based on the deployed subgraphs, the Indexers are able to respond to queries and get paid for the process.
GRTiQ: What do you think Delegators don’t understand about Indexers and what they do?
Stake2earn: We believe that Delegators should be more aware that being an Indexer means that you have an important technical background and lots of Dev and DevOps experience. The
bigger the tech experience of an Indexer, the more stable and secure the infrastructure is.
GRTiQ: How would you describe what the daily work activities of an Indexer are?
Stake2earn: As an Indexer, you need to always stay informed about any infrastructure updates coming up and make sure that you keep your Indexer upgraded to the last version. Besides this, an Indexer should monitor daily the server logs, archive node, the indexed queries, etc.
Moreover, as an Indexer, you need to make sure that you remain competitive in the market. This means that you need to change and upgrade your strategy any time needed by setting up a different Query Fee Cut for both Delegators and the Indexer, and the Rewards Effective Cut.
GRTiQ: How would describe the way Indexers “index a subgraph”?
Stake2earn: To be honest, even for us in the tech world, it’s complicated or was complicated to fully understand it at the beginning. The Graph Network is not an easy project in terms of
infrastructure, but what makes it a good experience is the fact that they have everything documented and the community is always willing to jump in and offer support based on their experience.
We understand that for an end-user/consumer it might be hard to understand, so we will try to describe it as user-friendly as possible. A subgraph is the concept used by The Graph in order to define what kind of data their Indexers will index from Ethereum. Moreover, the subgraph is also stating how this indexed data will be stored. Once an Indexer sets up a subgraph (an entire techy mojo is happening here), this subgraph will now be part of the global blockchain data.
GRTiQ: How would you describe to a Delegator the importance of selecting a good Indexer?
Stake2earn: It’s really important to do your research before choosing an Indexer to stake with. A good Indexer might mean providing a good fee cut and being very active in the community. This is why we at stake2earn are always very transparent with anyone knocking at our door, we are offering consultancy and we communicate a lot with our Delegators and/or potential Delegators.
GRTiQ: How would you advise Delegators to go about selecting an Indexer?
Stake2earn: Always do your research and try to communicate with someone from their team to ask all your questions. We recommend making the decision taking into account the Indexer’s past experience, the other stakes they are holding, and the openness in communicating with their clients.
GRTiQ: What is your advice for Delegators who are thinking about becoming an Indexer?
Stake2earn: We encourage everyone who has a minimum technical background, the time to invest almost full-time in this, and also the willingness to always learn something new in order to maintain the infrastructure offered, at high standards.
GRTiQ: What is your method for determining your rewards parameters?
Stake2earn: As stated earlier, The Graph Network is not an easy project in terms of the technology used behind it and, for this reason, we need high-performance servers. Besides the hardware, we also need to have people involved who have an exceptional technological background. Also, for the entire thing to work, it needs to be connected to an Ethereum archive node that you either own or rent.
Taking all the above into account, the rewards parameters might fluctuate in the Indexer’s lifetime compared with the beginning. Each Indexer tries to compensate the amount of money involved in setting up his infrastructure, as well as the recurring money for business as usual afterwards.
GRTiQ: What are some of the challenges ahead for Indexers?
Stake2earn: We believe the main challenge is to keep the infrastructure up to date. You need to invest a lot of time in keeping yourself informed as well as remaining tech competitive.
GRTiQ: How do you think the Indexer role will change once the migration to the mainnet? How will this change(s) impact Delegators?
Stake2earn: The Graph is already running on mainnet; however, there will be changes in the future, such as adding new subgraphs, software updates, etc. Delegators might want to choose Indexers that have their infrastructure updated and indexing on a specific subgraph, for example.
GRTiQ: Do you think Indexers will ever specialize in any specific ways?
Stake2earn: We can’t say that at the moment, but in the future, there might be a possibility. If The Graph will integrate more subgraphs, for sure there will be Indexers specialized on a specific subgraph and others on different subgraphs.
GRTiQ: How would you describe the importance of a committed and educated Delegator Community to The Graph and, more specifically, to Indexers?
Stake2earn: Being committed and educated is an important step in all industries, not only for the crypto world. Delegators are the most important assets in the whole scheme. Without Delegators, Indexers have nothing to stake besides their own tokens, of course.
It’s really important to have Delegators with knowledge about what being an Indexer means and what Indexers do. In the end, this understanding will help create an ability to compare between Indexers and thereby promote competition, which makes you evolve and grow.
GRTiQ: When you think about the future of The Graph Protocol, what do you envision?
Stake2earn: The Graph Network has the possibility to go to the next stage and add more subgraphs and integrate others such as Uniswap, Synthetix, Aave, and so on.
Also, it would be a great milestone for The Graph Network to query the data not only from Ethereum blockchain, but also from other blockchains. This will enable the consumer to create more dApps by querying via other subgraphs.
GRTiQ: What challenges to The Graph Protocol should the Delegator community be aware of?
Stake2earn: We believe that the Delegator community should be aware that The Graph is now a hosted service with the aim to change to a decentralized service. This will be a big step but, at the same time, it might present a challenge in terms of software if you take into account that there are complex integrations to be developed.
Nevertheless, the biggest challenge might be represented by penetrating the traditional market. But we trust that The Graph will be able to customize accordingly.
GRTiQ: What’s the next big thing the Delegator community should be watching for regarding The Graph Protocol?
Stake2earn: They should watch out for the moment when The Graph integrates more subgraphs and, at that time, be ready to evaluate Indexers that are already indexing those new subgraphs.
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DISCLOSURE: GRTIQ is not affiliated, associated, authorized, endorsed by, or in any other way connected with The Graph, or any of its subsidiaries or affiliates. This material has been prepared for information purposes only, and it is not intended to provide, and should not be relied upon for, tax, legal, financial, or investment advice. The content for this material is developed from sources believed to be providing accurate information. The Graph token holders should do their own research regarding individual Indexers and the risks, including objectives, charges, and expenses, associated with the purchase of GRT or the delegation of GRT.