The recent Block Chain Summit brought together some of the leading minds in the digital currency universe to yield the latest in innovative use cases for the blockchain.
There has been a noticeable decline in the number of Bitcoin conferences this year relative to last. This meetup too was less concerned about the traditional areas of consideration, such as wallets, adoption and regulation, and more about practical applications for Bitcoin’s blockchain. The summit was to feature “a set of intimate discussions highlighting critical issues and solutions and to lay out the framework for a world where humankind is fully benefiting from the amazing technology behind the Blockchain.”
In the weeks leading up to the event, it had attracted some criticism from some who felt it smelled of elitism. Bringing together both tech and non-tech minds, however, venture capitalist and co-organizer Bill Tai saw it differently, telling Wall Street Journal:
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“When accomplished people with diverse background can be placed in an unstructured environment where barriers are stripped away, the interaction that occurs allows the spontaneous and serendipitous mixing of ideas that can reformulate themselves into amazing action plans.”
Ideas that were explored included several of the “social impact” variety. Among them:
- An indelible public ledger to protect landowner’s property rights in Peru to counter competing claims for mineral exploration.
- A record of digital birth certificates, which will protect children from human traffickers.
- “Self-sovereign” digital identities.
- A framework for IBM’s vision for the Internet of Things that envisions a network of smart, interconnected devices.
- A light bulb that mines bitcoin (according to BitFury designer Niko Punin, it was created more to promote bitcoin adoption, similar to 21 Inc’s aspirations, and less to make money).
The event was hosted on Necker Island, a private island in the British Virgin Islands owned by Sir Richard Branson.