About KPL | Writing | Contact | Twitter | Linkedin

Hey, I'm KPL


I Build Decentralized Stuff

• A Brief Intro •

Hey! I'm Kirsten Pomales Langenbrunner (AKA KPL).

These days I spend most of my time building tools for work sovereignty at TalentLayer.

I've built a few companies (see below). I help a few projects with governance, partnerships, and process design. If you want to collab, DM me on Twitter to chat.

I've been featured as a lecturer on blockchain governance and ecosystem design by INATBA (European Commission blockchain association), The IEEE, Fedex Institute of Technology, Hyperledger Foundation and others.

Magyar vagyok. Ha magyar vagy, legyünk barátok!!! Soy puertorriqueña, pero mi español es muy malo. Probablemente pediré hablar inglés. Mein Deutsch ist jetzt schlecht (habe ich in den letzten Jahren nicht gesprochen), aber ich liebe die Sprache und werde sie bald verbessern.

Currently traveling the world with my husband Joey.

• Favorite Quotes & Other Thoughts •

"Knowledge is power. Information is liberating. Education is the premise of progress, in every society, in every family." - Kofi Annan

"The thought of being a creature of the present and the past, troubled me, and I longed to have a future—a future with hope in it. To be shut up entirely to the past and present is abhorrent to the human mind; it is to the soul—whose life and happiness is unceasing progress—what the prison is to the body.” - Frederick Douglass

“The argument for liberty is not an argument against organization, which is one of the most powerful tools human reason can employ, but an argument against all exclusive, privileged, monopolistic organization, against the use of coercion to prevent others from doing better.” ― Friedrich Hayek

My most fundamental belief is that humans are autonomous; that is, they are able to take action to impact their environment and circumstances. Anything can be done by anyone with enough willpower and grit. We make our own reality.

The future is decentralized and will be characterized by mass crypto adoption, flat organizations, and voluntary governance.

Those who can self-teach will inherit the earth.

• Building Tools for Sovereignty•

Over the coming decades, blockchain technology is poised to enable an entirely new sort of freedom for people globally.

Freedom /ˈfriːdəm/

a. The quality or state of being free: such as the absence of necessity, coercion, or constraint in choice or action

b. Sovereignty; Work Sovereignty, Financial Sovereignty, Geographic Sovereignty

To obtain freedom, we need to have sovereignty; ultimate and un-confiscatable authority over ourselves. The ability to make decisions for ourselves, free of coercion.

Sovereignty can be broken down into three pillars: financial sovereignty, work sovereignty, and geographic sovereignty.

Financial sovereignty is having control over your own savings and investments, free of centralized intermediaries. Cryptocurrency and decentralized finance are the tools that have allowed for the realization of financial sovereignty.

Without sovereignty of finances, centralized intermediaries such as banks, nation-states, and corporations can confiscate wealth for any reason.

Work sovereignty is having control over how you make income to the extent that your earning ability is resilient amidst outside forces. This is made possible when one’s reputation, built over time, is trusted by enough people to make finding new work easy.Unfortunately, reputation is hard to scale; it's only been possible to scale reputation beyond Dunbar’s Number through "trusted" (centralized) intermediaries.

Without sovereignty of work (facilitated by reputation), the ability to acquire new work whenever you please, nation-states, employers, and job platforms can coerce you by rescinding work permits, firing or threatening to fire you, or banning you from job platforms. I am currently working on this problem area, applying blockchain technology to the sovereign reputation issue: TalentLayer.

Geographic sovereignty is having the ability to easily change your physical location. Moving jurisdictions allows you to evade war, censorship, and coercion and go where you are treated best.

Geographic sovereignty is enabled by work sovereignty and financial sovereignty. Having sufficient savings and ease of making more income lowers the switching costs associated with moving jurisdictions. In the direst situations, people will free their geographic area with nothing in order to stay alive - but the lower the switching cost between jurisdictions the less coercion and negative situations people will put up with.

With the ability to assuredly generate income (work sovereignty), store wealth (financial sovereignty), and physically move to optimal places (geographic sovereignty), true freedom can be recognized. Coercion and manipulation of people with all three becomes extremely difficult.

This is what we're shooting for. This is the future we are building.

• Prior Lives •

Co-Founded NFT SDK & API ("21 - "22)

Co-founded and now advising FACINGS, an NFT gamification tooklit and API. Built our international team, forged our go-to-market partnerships, and took the company to the kick-off of our seed round.

Enterprise Blockchain Stuff + Governance Research ("19 - "21)

Consulted on enterprise DLT projects (weaning suits onto blockchain via private permissioned consortium networks). Co-led the IEEE's Blockchain Governance Research Working Group for two years. Was a part of Gitcoin KERNEL Block 3.

More Startups ("18 - "19)

Co-founded a few software startups including a data aggregation tech platform and an influencer marketing marketplace. Stumbled onto the capabilities of Ethereum smart contracts & pivoted to build blockchain-based tech (most important new tech of this century, IMO).

PHP Winter (Winter "18)

Taught myself PHP and built basic webapps on freelance contracts. Eventually realized I like building companies more than building code myself.

Public Policy Coalition Building ("16 - "19)

Managed grassroots coalition building and community education for a few public policy organizations working on reducing government cronyism. Realized that it's hard to change the momentum of government, corruption is rampant, and I can make a bigger impact building around the system via innovating technology. Was a participant in Atlas Network's Leader Lab.

Dropped Out (Winter "16)

Studied towards a computational linguistics degree for about 8 months. Dropped out when I landed a full-time job in public policy.

Early Startups + Public Forums ("14 - "15)

Co-founded an online public speaking courseware startup. Helped coordinate and moderate public forums on international current events, business, and tech issues at the City Club of Cleveland.

Archeology Intern ("13)

Classified bone fragments from dig sites and illustrated biological specimens (1, 2, 3) for the Cleveland Museum of Natural History's Archeology and Paleontology Department. Realized I didn't want to be an archeologist.

• Need Some Help? •

I'm happy to help folks trying to get into Web 3 get connected with the right orgs. If that's you, DM me on Twitter.

• Recentish Writing •

I sometimes write and talk about blockchain ecosystem design, stakeholder engagement, governance, and other topics.