How Ethereum Hackathons are Drastically Improving Blockchain Systems

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Since mid-2017, Ethereum hackathons have been held in many major cities across the globe, to encourage the development of decentralized applications (dApps) and blockchain-based systems.

ETHGlobal, the biggest Ethereum hackathon organization to date, has played a key role in facilitating the growth of the Ethereum open-source developer community, providing technical workshops, educational talks, and resources to hackers that participate in events to develop applications.

Most recently, ETHBerlin, described by many hackers as the most successful Ethereum hackathon to date, saw the emergence of a wide range of innovative projects like a game of Battleship using SNARKs and a prototype of Sharding coded by well respected Ethereum researcher Vlad Zamfir.

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Hackathons are Changing the Sector

Linda Xie, a prominent investor in the cryptocurrency sector acknowledged for her work as the co-founder of Scalar Capital and advisor to 0x, has been involved in ETHGlobal hackathons since its first hackathon on Oct. 13, 2017, at Waterloo, Canada.

At ETHBerlin, which gained significant media coverage due to its efforts to solely rely on decentralized applications (dApps) and Ethereum-based solutions to facilitate activities at the event such as live streaming, ticketing, and hotel booking, developers from both the local community in Germany and many other countries participated in the hackathon to build products on the blockchain.

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Xie stated that she was taken aback by the level of activity in the cryptocurrency community in Berlin, which primarily focuses on building products and collaborating with other developers. She also emphasized that her favorite project from the event was Ethstonia Identity, a product that allows Estonian e-Residency ID card holders to sign Ethereum transactions using their cards.

“Among the 8 winning projects, my favorite was Ethstonia Identity. It allows people to use their Estonian e-Residency ID card to sign Ethereum transactions. You can actually transact on the blockchain using a government issued ID which can be useful for signing legally binding contracts,” Xie explained.

Andreessen Horowitz co-founder and levendary venture capital investor Ben Horowitz said at TechCrunch Disrupt that there is more developer activity in crypto than in anything the firm has seen since the Internet.

Currently, the cryptocurrency market and blockchain technology are still at their infancy. Infrastructure to support institutional investors is just being created and scaling solutions to expand the capacity of base protocols like Ethereum are showing significant process.

Xie said:

“While it is clear we are still in the early stages of building, I have enjoyed watching the developer community grow and progress through each event.”

Building Interconnectedness

It is important, as Gnosis creator Martin Koppelman stated, for developers to continue creating dApps that rely on each other to build interconnectedness amongst decentralized systems, as systems like 0x Protocol and Augur have done with their platforms and partner applications.

“And as a next step, the number to look out for is DAPPs that seamlessly interact with each other and draw a benefit from being on the same platform. As a side effect, ultimately the price of ETH will then be a function of the demand for the use of applications in this reliable, open, and interlinked environment,” Koppelman noted.

Hackathons will play a vital role in helping developers create dApps with interconnectedness and streamlining the process of kickstarting projects which otherwise might not be experimented with due to lack of opportunities and resources.

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