Recap: Dutch Blockchain Hackathon

By February 16, 2017Blog

Guest post: Chris Ferris, Head of Hyperledger Technical Steering Committee 

I had a really great time this past weekend at the Dutch Blockchain Hackathon. I had been invited to serve as a “super accelerator”, a judging role I’ll explain in a bit.

This event was billed as the worlds largest blockchain hackathon to date. It was certainly impressive in its size! There were 55 teams of 5-6 participants competing in 5 solution domain tracks (Identity, Pensions, Energy, Reinventing Government, and Entrepreneurship and Trade). Microsoft and IBM were the Technology Sponsors of the event. Interestingly, the teams were roughly evenly divided between use of Ethereum and Hyperledger Fabric in their hacks. One team even tried to use Fabric v1.0 level code however, the nature of their hack involved a function still missing from the Node.js SDK, so they reverted to the Fabric v0.6 stable release.

One of the key themes of the event was that it was intended to “accelerate” winning teams through the next stages of realizing their vision – this is where the role of “super accelerator” came in. As a “super accelerator” we were to help the winning teams with connections, insights and guidance as they sought to continue development of their solution. I had offered to help any of the teams in establishing open source governance and community building insights for their projects, and for the winning teams using Hyperledger projects, any technical expertise and guidance.

The winning teams in the Identity and Entrepreneur track both used Hyperledger Fabric in their solutions. The Identity track winning team had a very novel approach to identity rehabilitation for refugees. The Entrepreneur track focused their winning solution on a uniquely Dutch problem pertaining to freelance contractors tax and pension allocation that is mandated by a new law.

Of course, there were plenty of great ideas being implemented by non-winning teams. Lots of world-changing ideas around green energy, identity and reinventing government. The energy and excitement at the event was inspiring. I’ll leave you with a taste in a video clip assembled by the organizers.

 

 

Given the excitement, innovation and energy at this event, I a really looking forward to the Hyperleger Hackathon in Shanghai next month!