[Discussion] Vision for BOS

Hello friends,

I’m writing this as an OG community member that has a knack for product and one too many ideas of things to build on NEAR with the ever growing set of core tech tools that are becoming available. There’s just two problems:

  1. I am overwhelmed and I don’t know where to start.
  2. I am afraid that most people are not up to date with the latest technical releases or the true potential of what can be built.
    2.1 Hypothesis: no one is tackling big hairy audacious problems because they don’t know that there is a web3 stack that can support it now.

So the purpose of this post is to start a discussion: how might we frame the entire narrative around founders:

  • Can we reverse engineer the explanation of every technical aspect from a product or real world implementation? (Concrete examples of how it looks it the real world - ideal reaction: ‘that’s cool, I want to build something that leverages that too’)
  • Can we create a visual representation: The Anatomy of a dApp for Mass Adoption so it is easier for everyone to understand how things work
  • Seriously, WTF is the BOS and why should anyone care? How is it similar / different to no code builders?

I use NoCode platforms of an example of a framework that should be considered as these platforms have done a great job a painting the full picture of all the pieces that go into making a fully functional app. There is a Figma File where I try to map what the web3/NEAR equivalent would be.

Pet Project - Decentralised Form

I just started using Fillout, a simple yet powerful form builder. I started thinking to myself - it shouldn’t be that hard to build a decentralised form builder? Similar to the Journal Idea, the path and the messaging for founders is not there.

Vision for BOS

Defi Summer was awesome. There was finally innovation around composability - Money Legos:

BOS should be coding legos: make it extremely easy for anyone to rapidly put together an MVP.

Anatomy of a What(?)

Below is an initial attempt at identifying all the Lego pieces. See Figma for an overview of the current stack looks like, and then help me identify the web3 equivalent.

No Code Analogy

Prior to my life as a full time broke cheerleader on NEAR, I spent a lot of time playing with No Code tools. Truly amazing how you can have an idea and within a few ours or days be able to ship and MVP to validate the idea. This is what the definition of success looks like for BOS.

In general, No Code platforms have three key pieces:

  1. UI/UX - most frequently used front end components that can be dragged and dropped as needed
    1.1 BOS Components(?)
  2. Database - the most basic form being a google spreadsheet or airtable. It simply maps he data on each row/cell to the specific component on front-end.
    2.1 Where does my data go on-chain? (IPFS, Arweave, Social DB, et al)
  3. Plugins - enables functionality, ranges from internal logic to third party services
    3.1 Smart contracts? Can/should each ‘plugin’ from the No Code/web2 world have a counterpart to enable same level of functionality?

Components (Front End)

See Figma for examples of the Components from popular No Code platforms.

Overall there is a sense of frustration with the Components on BOS now. The general sentiment I get from the community is that it seems simpler to just build your own application the traditional way as opposed to having to understand how BOS works and then building there.

I’m also wondering whether I can just build all the front-end of an app using these no-code tools and then use (the NEAR javascript API?) to store certain actions and information on-chain (how do Sweatcoin and KaiKai work?)

Data - Where is my information anyway?

Most people are familiar with basic interactions on-chain such as transferring or swapping tokens. But beyond engaging with a block explorer, most people don’t really know much about how information is stored, or the possibilities

Can we create frameworks that enable founders to understand the state of the tech?

  • Meta data
  • Is it possible to have applications with rich data structures (relational databases)
  • What is the Near Query, GraphQl, etc. for dummies.
  • What data is out there available to be leveraged by new apps?
    How might we cross-pollinate the existing Kai-kai and Sweatcoin users by creating special experiences targeted just to them! (on certain criteria based on on-chain data)

Data - opportunities?

How should founder be thinking about data to maximise value:

  • Data Commons: can we make a compelling case for a certain type of applications to aggregate data openly so others can leverage it and build ever more valuable applications and systems on top?
    – AI: how does a scenario where an AI model can use on-chain data (or data owned by the collective) look like?
    – Reputation?
  • Privacy/Business Models: can we make a compelling case for business models where data is crowdsourced but kept ‘private’ in such a way that can then be sold to others to be able to monetise?
    – Nearcrowd?
    – Encryption / gating
    – Tokenomics: distribution of value among contributors?


  • Hybrid apps? Near API/SDK to talk to the real world?
  • How might these ‘apps’ (plugins) be standalone projects that can be rebuilt in web3
  • How would a project of that nature benefit from transitions to web3 (tech enabled moat i…e composability).
  • Would it make sense to treat smart contracts similar to web2 Plugins - an external asset you can plug into to get desired functionality?

Closing Thoughts

Shift from developers to Founders is a subtle but important one. There is technical documentation out there that enables developers to build, but there is SO MUCH more that we can be doing to invite people to imagine what they can be building.

First step is to identify all the web2 equivalents - a simple one pager where all community members can easily understand the big picture and help us attract other founders.

Second step is to, as much as possible, align the tooling and resources to enable the ‘founder journey’

Third step would be to start pushing out the narrative, and creating spaces to discuss and nurture, the possibilities that open up when the full stack is decentralised (new business models, privacy, AI, etc.)

Looking forward to learning from others. Let’s build mass consumer applications together(ish)


First, this is poignant and well stated. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

Do you believe this is something that could be addressed with a community project? I feel like establishing this as a body of work would be super helpful in seeing it to fruition. The goal being a “paper” (for lack of a better term in my brain) that outlines a) how to upgrade the BOS to address these points and b) how to both educate and inform founders with a docs + social media + online learning plan.

What you are discussing here is important and there can be significant benefits for outlining a plan that a bunch of people can follow together towards a common goal. I personally believe that some funding to research and build this plan would be a worthy effort in the ecosystem.


@satojandro thanks for writing and posting this. I think the problems you’re calling out are right on right on the money, and we absolutely have to clarify what is BOS, what are the pieces of BOS, what is NEAR, and how they’re related. That confusion exists even within the core development team!

I’m still pretty new to BOS and NEAR, so when I want to build something I’m still reaching for web2 tools. Drawing analogies between web2 and web3-with-BOS, and talking about where it’s better (and where it’s worse!) is going to be very important for converting people like myself to build on BOS by default instead.

I had never considered BOS to be a no-code platform platform – but that’s both a interesting use case and an compelling way of thinking about the UX and value of BOS, even if it remains a code-first platform.

Anyway I don’t have much to specifically comment on, only to say once again that I broadly agree with you and am trying to collect feedback like this from here and from other sources to help reframe and clarify what we’re building and how.

Pagoda CTO


This write up is so onpoint and on the money :100::100::100::100:

Thanks for chiming in!

100% A very similar line of work is something that has been discussed with several OGs and core contributors and that we are in the process of setting up as the Mass Adoption is NEAR DAO (MAIN DAO)

We are in talks with House of Merit and will be meeting next week to explore ways of funding this. Any support, collaboration or feedback from NF would be greatly appreciated!

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Hi Eric,

Congratulations on the new role and welcome to the NEAR fam. It is great to see you active on the forum and listening to feedback from the community.

I agree. No-code may not be the ultimate goal as the use cases tend to be limited to pre-existing functionality, which may be at odds with the current stage of web3. However, it is certainly a nice example to have specially in terms of simplifying the presentation of Building Blocks, etc.

Looking forward to meeting you in person during NEARCON soon

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ClickDapp by Hackachain, Magicbuild.ai by our team, and Jutsu.ai all serve with similar goals