One of the best parts about traveling for conferences, especially ETH concerts, is that every region has a different idea of what it means to build.
ETHBarcelona really created their own space. Aside from some Spanish flavor, there was a big focus on inclusion and spirituality. ETH Barcelona felt like that was a very good intro to what being inside crypto should be like—making things better and building for the good of the world.
It felt like a celebration, with an incredible whimsical, quirky vibe that elevated the conference.
In this post we’ll go into some of the amazing people we see, the biggest themes and of course the hackathon that ended with a nice surprise.
Web3 Brands IRL
As always, one of the greatest parts of the conference was meeting some amazing builders in life—many with products that members in our team and community use personally (and for hackathons). Here are some of the peeps we had the pleasure of running into in Barcelona.
While there are plenty of tools that add new capabilities and use-cases, Scroll is all about compatibility for things that already exist. Scroll is a zkEVM-based zkRollup on Ethereum that enables native compatibility for existing Ethereum applications and tools. In other words, builders get the best of building in the world of Etherum—but bigger and faster.
(We’re pretty hyped on zK as well. Check out this tutorial from Kelly Kim and how to mint an NFT with zKSync and Pinata.)
We had a great time chatting with the Scroll team about the zK space, and all the things we knew (and didn’t know) about Spain. Super cool peeps. We even got to use Scroll in our hackathon project! More on that later.
Domains are the first impression a user will have with you. ENS makes that impression one worth remembering. Ethereum Name Service (ENS) is a decentralized and open-source technology that provides a naming system that allows people to map human-readable names like “myname.eth” to machine-readable identifiers like Ethereum addresses. They make it easier to interact and search for dapps and wallets, and ultimately, use the blockchain.
We had a blast meeting up with their team, playing a few games, and finding some “whoa the world is weirdly small” connections.
It’s no secret that web3 is heavily male, and heavily dominated by English-first projects and companies. Cryptonikas is one of the organizations that knows the world is much bigger than that—and they’re taking action.
Cryptonikas is a DAO focused on getting more representation into web3, specifically women and the Spanish speaking community. Gi, Nairobi, and Yisbel joined Cripto Willy for an amazing talk on onboarding LATAM women into web3. And not just an overview of the problem—they presented real solutions and opportunities to get involved.
The ETH Barcelona Hackathon
Building can be intimidating. And when it is, when a hackathon feels like advanced builders are the only ones welcome, newer builders don’t feel comfortable to really be creative and really take risks and make mistakes. ETHBarcelona was the exact opposite of intimidating.
The interaction between the builders and the sponsors was incredible. Whereas other conferences are more spread out, having everyone basically in one area made everyone accessible. When there was a problem with a tool, you could just walk up and ask them.
And even though it was laid back and felt like more play than work, there was some serious building going on. Ourselves included.
Springer: Web3 Couchsurfing For The Vibe Economy
Led by our developer evangelist Kelly, Pinata’s hackathon team set out to solve a problem many conference goers continue to deal with: finding a place to sleep. AirBNB and hotels simply don’t offer the same opportunity for long-term connection, not to mention the skyrocket in prices anytime there’s an event in town.
SPRINGER enables travelers to find places to stay during events and conferences. They browse by event and then can filter available listings based on shared values. Apes can stay with apes, regens with regens, solar punks with solar punks, etc.
Here’s how Springer works:
When the host lists an available space, they stake a small amount of USDC to guarantee the place exists. The host will receive this stake back at the end of the stay. If the guest shows up to the property and it is not as shown, they provide photo evidence and the case is reviewed by the DAO for compensation.
When the guest makes an application to stay with a host, they stake a predetermined amount of USDC to guarantee their stay. After the stay is finished, the host will receive the USDC as compensation for the accommodation.
Once the stay is finished, both guest and host can leave reviews about each other with comments.
And surprise—while there were tons of amazing projects competing in the web3 social track, Springer took home the victory! 🎉
Like most hackathons our build time was fun, chaotic, and an incredible opportunity to use some amazing tools, including Scroll, Safe Wallet, and of course, Pinata Cloud.
ETHBarcelona 2023 was an incredible celebration. From the music, to the art and the colors, everything was focused on creativity. Really embracing the idea of making something that could change the world, or at least, how we interact with it and with each other.
Above all, it was great to see that the spirit of building is still thriving. From non-technical builders, to artists, to developer legends, everyone coming together to enjoy a few days together around a shared experience…well, it just doesn’t get much better than that.
As always, happy pinning. And happy building.