The world’s largest Ethereum-based hackathon will take place from February 15 to 17 in Denver. Today, the creators of ETHDenver announced that nearly every aspect of the event will be run using blockchain technology.
The second annual ETHDenver event will use blockchain when submitting projects, judging and voting on projects, and performing other tasks. Guests will also access blockchain technology when applying to attend the conference. Event organizers may use multiple blockchain platforms to facilitate a smooth process.
Blockchain conferences have been criticized in the past for promoting blockchain technology without really embracing it. We’ve seen bitcoin conferences refuse to accept crypto as a payment method for tickets, for example, and few blockchain conferences use blockchain-based ticketing systems.
ETHDenver isn’t just using blockchain as a cheap trick, either: blockchain will play a crucial role in how applications are processed and how projects are judged. The event is free to attend for approved attendees, for example, but applicants can stake a certain amount of Ether to have their applications reviewed more quickly. The Ether will be released when the attendee checks into the event.
Meanwhile, the payment system used by the conference will also be based on blockchain technology. Attendees will have a unique web wallet pre-loaded with a “localcoin” called buffiDai, which is pegged to the Dai. This coin will drive the ETHDenver economy during the three-day event. The blockchain-based payment platform was created in collaboration with a number of notable blockchain startups, including MakerDAO, Status, POA Network, Solidcoin, SendWyre, and Quantstamp.
This isn’t the first time ETHDenver has implemented blockchain into the event. Last year, organizers used something called “Colorado Coin” to allow attendees to pay for food, swag, drinks, and activities. This year’s buffiDai coin will play a similar role. Vendors who accept the buffiDai coin will be able to instantly redeem the token for fiat currency sent directly to their bank accounts via SendWyre’s payment processing technology. Attendees holding buffiDai, meanwhile, can spend the token throughout the three-day event.
Attendees can hold their buffiDai tokens in their Dai wallet, a new wallet created by Austin Griffith, who serves as Director of Research at Ethereum bounties platform Gitcoin. The wallet is designed to be as easy and quick to use as possible. Attendees scan a QR code embedded on a physical coin in their swag bag. The wallet can be run directly within your phone’s native web browser. There’s no need to install a separate app. After launching the browser, you can walk up to a food truck, scan a code from the menu, and walk away with a burger.
Each buffiDai token will be worth exactly 1 USD. All onboarding will be done through scanning a single QR code. Event organizers want to help new users understand the benefits of crypto by showing them how easily it can be used as an effective payment solution.
2,000 Participants Are Expected to Attend the Hackathon
Last year, 1,500 people attended the ETHDenver hackathon. This year, organizers expect 2,000 participants.
Some are surprised that ETHDenver was able to attract more participants despite the fact we’re in the middle of “Crypto Winter”. Last year’s event was held at the peak of the bull run, just before prices crashed.
“I think the reason for that is we’re a developer-facing event, not an investor-facing event,”
said John Paller, Executive Steward of ETHDenver, in a statement to Coindesk.
ETHDenver’s organizers have also identified four main themes, including society and systems, going mainstream, business and capital 3.0, and developer tools. The themes are meant to flex the potential of blockchain technology while also showing participants what the future of crypto is going to be like.
Meanwhile, ETHDenver will also allow participants to make “art DAOs”. Blockchain scalability and interoperability platform TrueBit teamed up with MIT Media to create a physical geodesic dome that will host generative art pieces described as “art decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs)” represented by data on the blockchain. They’re described as “like artificial intelligence forms of art” built using computation power that generates images. The art DAOs will be viewable at the Art Maker Space, which was also at the event last year.
Ultimately, ETHDenver is clearly using blockchain technology as more than just a niche toy: blockchain is playing a crucial part of the event from beginning to end. From applications to event wallets to art exhibits, blockchain technology can be found at every stage of this year’s ETHDenver conference, taking place from February 15 to 17, 2019 at the Gart Sports Castle in downtown Denver.
You can learn more about this year’s ETHDenver 2019 conference here.