The Odyssey Hackathon, the biggest blockchain hackathon on earth, is getting underway this weekend in Groningen. One hundred teams from around the world are in town to come up with innovative ways to apply blockchain technology.
Translation by Traci White
Odyssey, which was previously known as Dutch Blockchain Hackathon, has been held in Groningen since 2016. Dagblad van het Noorden reports that the 100 participating teams have 48 hours to create applications of blockchain technology for the government, various ministries, businesses and knowledge institutions.
The teams of five to six people, with support from various business partners, will be assigned one of 20 challenges to spend the weekend working on. According to the Odyssey website, this year’s tracks are fossil free future, nature 2.0, 21st century digital citizenship, retirement rethink, international travel, crisis and disaster management, inclusive banking, feeding the future, scaling ecosystems, digital nation’s infrastructure and future of cargo insurance.
The Dutch Ministry of Justice and Security will be tasking some of the teams to focus on safely sharing biometric data during international travel. One company that has been involved with the blockchain event for years, energy company Vattenfall, has tasked five of the teams with turning an electric car into a mobile steam factory. The company is also interested in seeing how block chain can be used to certify steam created from green sources.
One of the winners of the 2018 edition was a team called Bencom, and they came up with a way to evaluate the status of an energy contract, which could especially come in handy if a customer moves house or chooses to switch providers. In 2017, the winning idea was a “self-sovereign refugee passport”
Blockchain is a digital system for keeping track of online transactions, providing more transparency and accountability. One of the benefits of the technology is that it can be used and shared by a large network.