Priorities from the 2022 Ecosystem Offsite
by Foundation Team on October 12, 2022

On September 19, 2022 we held the first Stacks Offsite with builders from the ecosystem to talk through technical priorities, share opportunities, and discuss the known challenges within the roadmap. The goal was to bring together a diverse group of builders to outline common priorities, and build working groups and a public roadmap to share with the community.

Separately, we conducted a far-ranging survey from over 50 companies building on Stacks to guide the discussions that took place at this year’s offsite. This survey addressed technical improvements, ideas, and growing the overall ecosystem. We’ll be sharing more information about these results and, as always, invite you to be a part of upcoming feedback sessions.
Why it matters
The discussion was organized for both in-person and remote contributors to surface and sort the highest priorities in a decentralized manner and produce actionable recommendations (not steps) for the community.
The big picture
Stacks is a decentralized ecosystem that relies on various contributors to make improvements and upgrades. The best way to move large, ambitious upgrades forward is by creating cross-community working groups to lead large scale initiatives and creating public accountability to the community. The largest priorities are spelled out below and have clear plans of action.
As a community, we identified three priorities:
Speed and Scalability Improvements
Bitcoin Write
Bitcoin NFTs
Five working groups were established to focus on these decentralized priorities.
Faster L1 Working Group

Working on design scope and working on a proposal to improve speed and hit target confirmation times in the next 3-6 months. Design work prioritized second to Stacks 2.1 upgrade work. Scoped plan and SIP will be presented to the community when complete.

Non Custodial BTC on Stacks

The lack of a stateful smart contract system on Bitcoin necessitates the construction of systems in which a representation of locked Bitcoin is traded within a separate smart-contract-powered blockchain. This working group aims to design (and potentially implement) a trustless and reliable 2-way peg between Bitcoin and Stacks.

Bitcoin NFTs

Determining market demand for minting, claiming, and transferring of NFTs with Bitcoin. In parallel, working on technical requirements for additional BTC NFT functionality.

GTM Non Custodial Bitcoin

Scoping customer interest, market competition, and requirements. Focus on potential partnerships that enable more applications built on new bitcoin write capabilities.

Marketing & Comms
Folks in the community are looking for a roadmap and how to understand future of Stacks. Focus on creation of and delivery of key communications materials for broader narrative as well as new initiatives.

  • Brittany Laughlin, Stacks Foundation
  • Claire Topalian, Stacks Foundation
  • Public Group Link
Going deeper
To read more about the key objectives for our top 3 priorities, click into each below.
Speed & Scalability Improvements
The objective for prioritizing Speed & Scalability Improvements is to reduce transaction confirmation latency. High prioritization especially for those serving application and infrastructure builders was considered within these discussion topics:
  • Target 10-15sec confirmations or less on mainnet.
  • Enable speed without federation or decentralization trade offs.
  • Microblocks are a potential solution with more development.
  • Subnets address performance and allow long term scaling, especially for application specific. Going live in Q1 2023. Test net already live for builders.
  • Speed and scalability enable more advanced applications built on Stacks.

Note: Subnets test is currently live. Open to anyone. Led by Hiro Systems. More information here.
Bitcoin Write
The objective for prioritizing Bitcoin Write is to enable more native Bitcoin use cases by solving Bitcoin write. High prioritization especially for defi applications, STX holders interested in market differentiation was considered within these discussion topics:
  • Bitcoin read possible with Stacks, Bitcoin write possible but through a bridge.
  • More native support opens new defi and utility applications for Bitcoin holders.
  • sBTC or “sugarBTC” nicknamed synthetic Bitcoin asset in development.
  • Addition of a USD stable asset with good liquidity would enable more use cases once sBTC is live.
  • Technically feasible to resolve bitcoin write, so the focus is now on resourcing to ship it faster.
  • Zest Protocol is focused on bringing in more institutional bitcoin into Stacks ecosystem, so sBTC would be complementary.
  • Solving Bitcoin write is a huge differentiator for builders choosing between chains.
  • Unlocking $400B+ of locked Bitcoin value is a large opportunity for builders.
Bitcoin NFTs
The objective for prioritizing Bitcoin NFTs is to bring more BTC functionality to NFTs. High prioritization especially for NFT creators, NFT infrastructure providers and wallets was considered within these discussion topics:
  • Technical viability for more BTC functionality for NFTs.
  • Support BTC NFTs that enable BTC crowdfunding, DAO compatibility, and trading support.
  • Stacks NFTs have organic traction within the Stacks ecosystem, however Bitcoin has 1000x the capital market (funding for founders) and 2000x the unique # of wallets (distribution for founders) as Stacks.
  • Bitcoin is not easily programmable so it is not often used to mint or fundraise.
  • NFTs are fastest growing category on Stacks
  • Large interest in .btc domains that is pushing more infrastructure development.
Fun fact
There were other topics surfaced relating to the top three priorities, or had working fixes in progress including Miner incentives, increased liquidity, evm compatibility, SIP-10 infrastructure, and a general ask for more resources for builders. Each has an existing team working on the topic or an open SIP proposal in progress. If not, the remaining topics were tabled for later prioritization, providing an opportunity for the broader community to contribute feedback or consider submitting an open SIP proposal.
The bottom line
What lies ahead for Stacks and the Stacks Roadmap is up to the community. The technical ideas that will ultimately get implemented go through the Stacks Improvement Proposals (SIPs) process. The SIP process relies on community contributions, feedback, and voting to accept new ideas into the technical roadmap. The ideas shared above will be published for community review so everyone has the space to add more ideas, further refine the scope, and understand the proposals together.
What's next?
Given the strong attendance in September and interest in future offsites, we aim to support at least two offsites next year. The working groups, focused on the three priorities, will provide the closest opportunity to work toward solving these challenges.
Final thoughts
There’s high value placed on working in public so the discussion items, action items, and priorities are showcased within this update, including ways everyone in the community can contribute to these shared goals. We’re grateful to the 25+ attendees who represented 14 companies in the ecosystem, including participants from Gamma, Stacks Ventures, Trust Machines, Mechanism, Hiro Systems, Xverse, CityCoins, ALEX, Arkadiko and Stacks Foundation.
Get involved
Stay up-to-date on the blockchain upgrades by attending the weekly Blockchain calls here. Please add updates related to your work on Stacks and you can contribute to the ongoing roadmap below.

Drop in your email to stay in the loop on Stacks Foundation news