Post Blockchain Hackathon Meetup: the first results

It’s been about two months since the world’s biggest Blockchain Hackathon was held in the Big Building. But all the ideas, hard work and efforts weren’t limited to that single weekend. Behind the scenes, the track winners of the hackathon are still working hard on their prototypes and concepts to improve society with the help of blockchain innovation. On Tuesday, May 2, the first post-hackathon meetup took place in the Big Building, with the teams presenting their work so far.

The first Dutch Blockchain Hackathon last February was a big success, and also the biggest of its kind in the world. Around 400 people burned the midnight in the Big Building, trying to come up with ways to use blockchain technology to tackle pressing societal issues and take the first steps of actually creating real products and real solutions and use the groundbreaking technology to its fullest potential. Four out of five winners continued working on their idea and presented some results during the first official follow-up event:

Re-inventing Government Track

How can we make government more transparent, reliable and more efficient? Can we get rid of bureaucracy altogether, while making sure our information is totally safe?

Team It’s Time for Plan B is working on developing an open source timestamping “plug-in” for blockchain technology. This means that any piece of information added to the chain gets a timestamp that cannot be tampered with, which makes it ideal for government use, because it can be used for anything ranging from marriage certificates, legal documents and even safe electronic voting. The team is currently talking to RDW (DMV) and DUO, the student loan office to look for possibilities.

Identity Track

Trust and identity go hand in hand, because how can we verify whether someone really is who he says he is? And how can we make sure that our personal information is only accessible to the right people or institutions?

The Refugee E-dentity team built a secure online profile for asylum seekers without official documents, that makes it easy and secure to share information about identity. Organizations can see exactly which personal information has already been verified and refugees themselves can decide which organization can see what. The team presented their idea during the SXSW festival in Austin, Texas last month and is currently working on further building the platform.

International trade & entrepreneurship Track

The new Dutch DBA law for working contracts between freelancers and their clients is controversial to say the least. Contracts can be denied by the government months later, creating uncertainty, the possibility of fines and back taxes and freelancers losing contracts altogether.

Team Zissou is working on a platform for freelancers and their clients, where contracts can be immediately verified and approved, avoiding potential fines afterwards. D66 Senator Alexander Rinnooy Kan introduced the team members to State Secretary of Finance Eric Wiebes, to talk about using the platform and what the scope should be.

Energy Track

How much of the energy we use every day is really green? And what happens with the energy we don’t use? How can we promote trust and use when it comes to sustainable energy?

Team TOBLOCKCHAIN came up with Power to Share, a platform where people can share green energy they’ve produced at home with friends and have the option to share their data with energy companies. The team is currently enrolled in the Energy VentureLab acceleration program, to turn their idea into a working prototype and build a business around it.

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Prince Constantijn kicks off the Blockchain Hackathon

Prince Constantijn kicks off the Blockchain Hackathon

“Worst audience ever!” That’s how Groningen’s newly appointed Chief Digital Officer and Big Building Head Honcho Nick Stevens jokingly characterizes the applause he receives as he walks up on stage to kick off the Dutch Blockchain Hackathon. It’s exactly 1 pm, and the biggest blockchain hackathon in the world runs on a tight schedule, because there’s plenty of work to be done in the span of just one short weekend.