Thoughts From Coinvention: It's 1993 And This Is An Internet Conference

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of attending Coinvention, a blockchain conference in my hometown of Philadelphia. I was honored to moderate a panel and to share the day with a host of interesting speakers and attendees. Congrats to the organizers for putting on a successful event!


Kevin Owocki, founder of Gitcoin, gave my favorite talk of the day


Something that continually struck me about the conference was the wide range of backgrounds and perspectives found amongst both the speakers and the attendees. There were technical talks on ownable assets in video games, a panel of legal experts led by Kevin Werbach, a "crypto comic" who told something approximating jokes, and everything in between.

The hallway track was equally diverse. On the one hand, I spent 30 minutes with an excited team who wanted to show me their DApp. They'd just published it to the Ropsten test network, and we dove into the technical details of their smart contracts. I also saw a guy wearing a light-up Bitcoin hat with a Dash tattoo on his forearm, and at the vendor booths, I passed on the opportunity to try a "Bitcoin Energy Drink" called Liquid Assets.

Why is it the crypto space seems to attract such a variety of characters?

At the after party, I sipped a beer and posed this question to the group of folks I happened to be chatting with. "Well," said one of the other attendees, "It's 1993 and this is an 'internet' conference."


If this technology is going to be half as important as some of us think it is, the whole idea of a "blockchain" or "crypto" conference may seem silly in a 5-10 years. We should expect it to attract a wide variety of people, because it has the potential to impact every crevice of the economy. 

Still, there's much work to be done until then. In the meantime, it was nice to share the day with the quixotic cast of fellow enthusiasts and early adopters. Onward!