On April 4th, NEO Global Development (NGD) held its first workshop in Zurich, Switzerland at the Swisscom Blockchain office. Lili Zhao, director of NGD’s Swiss office, hosted the event while neow3j co-founder Dr. Guilherme Sperb Machado (Guil), and NEO developer Rendong Liu conducted the workshop.

The event provided an introduction to digital assets on NEO and had over 20 participants. Lili began the evening by introducing the NEO ecosystem in three components: infrastructure (consensus nodes, full nodes, and tools), entities (NEO foundation, NGD, NGC), and communities. When speaking about the NEO community, Lili commented proudly, “Rumour has it that NEO has the best community. Well sometimes rumors are true.’’

Lili finished by highlighting various dApps built on the NEO blockchain and invited participants to explore the ecosystem further and join the community.

Guil then introduced the UXTO (Unspent Transaction Output) account system on NEO. After outlining a scenario that included a series of transactions, Guil demonstrated how to set up a NEO PrivateNet and neo-scan to explore the UTXO system further. He used neow3j to explain how a raw transaction is composed, signed, and validated by the network.

Rendong, who had freshly arrived from the airport, then discussed digital assets on the NEO blockchain. In his presentation, Rendong spoke about some of the challenges faced when using UTXO assets and the benefits of using the account model on which NEP-5 assets are based. Rendong outlined the structure of NEP-5 tokens and demonstrated a transfer using a wallet and neon-js on the NEO MainNet.

The workshop came to an end with a light-hearted game to demonstrate a simple form of delegated Byzantine Fault Tolerance (dBFT), the consensus mechanism used by the NEO blockchain.

The dBFT-inspired simple game worked as follows: two groups were formed with Lili and Guil acting as the “speaker” of each group. The speakers randomly wrote down a number between 1 and 10 and asked their respective group members to do the same. Each group was then halved, with the half holding numbers closest to the speaker remaining in the game. This was intended to demonstrate consensus and the game was repeated until one member remained in each group.

Istvan Balogh, senior iOS engineer, and Ionut Scirlet, SAP solution architect at the Swiss Post were the two randomly selected NEO winners and were awarded 5 NEO each, with Istvan sharing 2 NEO with another participant.

The workshop is being followed by a three-day NEO developer training event hosted by the Swisscom Blockchain Academy from Monday, April 8th through Wednesday, April 10th. The focus of the multi-day training is on how to develop smart contracts and dApps on the NEO blockchain.