The NEO Black Sea Community hosted a hackathon and assembly at the end of September. An array of blockchain businesses, experts, academics, and policy-makers gathered for the Assembly to discuss public token sales (a.k.a. initial coin offerings [ICOs]), the use of digital assets to create economic opportunity, and future regulations, with an aim of providing attendees with new tools and the right network to create real solutions for real problems. The three-day long hackathon was oriented towards providing solutions for issues that affect Georgian people, and improving government services through smart contract use. A total prize of USD $5,000 equivalent in GAS was offered to the top three teams, with nOS matching the prize for any winning team that built a solution on the nOS platform.

Ten NEO-based projects participated in the Assembly and Hackathon, which included Alchemint, Pikcio, NEO Health, Asura Coin, iMusify, Network GURU, Guardian Circle, Spotcoin, Travala, and Effect.AI.

Participants of the three day event were able to connect with leadership and projects in order to expand the ecosystem. Mark Jeffery, co-founder and CEO of Guardian Circle told NEO News Today, “I’m from Los Angeles, which is mostly EOS country – so it was really great to meet so many NEO people in the same room. I also really appreciated the presence of Johnson Zhao, and the chance to ask him some questions.”

Matt Luczynski, founder and CEO of Travala, expressed gratitude towards the organisers of the event and satisfaction in being able to be a part of the Black Sea initiative. “We were delighted to support NEO Black Sea. The events were educational and allowed each project to add value towards each other. It’s important that we support and collaborate to broaden the ecosystem. Well done to Tim at Spotcoin for hosting such an awesome event.”

NEO Black Sea Community Assembly

The Assembly took place on Friday, September 28th, to serve as a one-day forum for partners and agencies to collaborate and share experiences in a close setting. The Assembly was comprised of NEO leadership, Georgian government officials, and various NEO-based projects, who sought to explore ideas, challenges, and collaborative opportunities.

NEO Global Development’s (NGD) general manager, Johnson Zhao, attended the Assembly that took place in Tibilisi, Georgia. On the topic of the NEO Black Sea Community, Zhao said, “It’s coming and we look forward to working with you in many different ways. Developers: Let’s build it. Let’s build something together.”

Also in attendance was Mariam Turashvili, head of project management and the blockchain project manager from the National Agency of Public Registry (NAPR). The NAPR is the first government agency that has utilized blockchain, by applying its uses to the Georgian land registry. Proclaiming the first real use case of blockchain in the public service realm, Turashvili also believes smart contracts “[address] the financial risks of the citizens during property registration process.”

NEO-based projects in attendance at the Assembly included NEO Health, iMusify, and Effect.AI. Following the Assembly, NEO Health was “able to speak to the Georgia Ministry of Health from the connections fostered at the assembly.” David Walters, CEO of iMusify, was excited “to see what is happening in Georgia, that the spark is igniting [there],” and that he sees “a good future for Georgia in general.” Chris Dawe, CEO of Effect.AI, discussed the company’s trial with the United Nations in Georgia, which was an effort to create online jobs in Effect Force for mechanical turk workers to build real-world business solutions.

Lastly, the Assembly’s project manager and head of Spotcoin’s legal department, Shorena Kikaleishvili, declared the one-day event as “a fantastic opportunity that let us connect NEO Global Development with the Georgian government, to connect NEO blockchain projects to each other, and to foster a deeper relationship between these projects and NEO’s top staff.”

To read a full account of the Assembly, visit the Blocknews Georgia article listed below:

NEO Black Sea Community Hackathon

The inaugural NEO Black Sea Community Hackathon was hosted by the Georgian American University (GAU), and supported 43 hours of coding from participants. The theme of the NEO hackathon was “Improving Government Services using smart contracts,” which sought to develop creative solutions that will make Georgian government services more efficient and cost-effective. Some examples provided in the initial briefing included addressing financial concerns, reducing wrongful manipulation or fraud, and increasing trust.

The first place winner was awarded US $2,500, the second place winner awarded US $1,500, and the third place winner awarded US $1,500 in GAS equivalent. Teams that developed their solutions using the nOS platform, were offered double prize money.

Competitors who participated in the hackathon came from a variety of locations and backgrounds. Participants included university students from San Diego State, GAU, and Georgian Technical; mining companies such as Birtvi and Golden Fleece; and, established software development teams such as Vobi and iSnipe.

The hackathon began with 13 teams, but only seven were able to finish the three-day sprint, because of what Hackathon project manager, Tatia Kakhetelidze, called “insurmountable obstacles.”

Participants used past experience as inspiration for their projects.

The San Diego State University team developed its NEO Service Hub, which took “past property fraud problems they had faced to create an immutable and transparent ownership ledger.” The Golden Fleece team “applied NEO smart contracts to university diplomas to have an irreversible proof of authenticity for the documents, all available to view online and identifiable by QR code.”

The judging panel was comprised of the following individuals:

  • Zdravko Georgiev, NEO developer from Bulgaria,
  • Yasen Mihailov, NEO developer from Bulgaria,
  • Chris Dawe, CEO of Effect.AI, and
  • Tom Zhang, an NGD software engineer from Shanghai, China.

Presentations of the participants’ final deliverables began at 4:00 pm on Sunday, September 30th. Each team was allotted 5 minutes to present their ideas, and field questions about their projects.

Overall, James Lawrence of Blocknews Georgia, found “it was hard not to appreciate the feeling of collaboration and welcoming atmosphere throughout the weekend, no one was too busy or big to explain something, and although they were competitors, you never would have guessed with the way the team’s helped each other out.”

To read a full account of the Hackathon, visit the Blocknews Georgia article listed below:

Winners of NEO Black Sea Hackathon

Spotcoin published an article highlighting the Top 3 teams.

First Place: Georgian NEO Token

The Georgian NEO Token project was focused on “a decentralized program that incentivizes tourism and encourages the world to visit Georgia.” The project incentivizes individuals to provide real-time reviews by offering token rewards to contributors. The Georgian NEO Token project used the nOS platform and received the additional reward on offer from nOS.

Second Place: People’s Voice

The second place team, People’s Voice, focused on citizen involvement and engagement in polls and referendums. The team believes “more citizen involvement via the blockchain [will] decrease the cost of referendums and increase engagement.”

Third Place: Golden Fleece

The Golden Fleece project focused on “integrating diplomas in the blockchain, [which] will help future employees ensure educational diplomas and experience are authentic.” The development team likes the NEO ecosystem because it’s “fast, cheap, and scalable.”

To read the write-up of the Top 3 teams, visit the link below: