8 Things You Missed at EthDenver [LITE]
The best things that happened at one of the biggest Ethereum events
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Dear Bankless Nation,
ETH Denver just wrapped up.
Over 12,000 people came to Denver to participate in the hackathon, attend the talks, meet other like-minded people, and go to parties.
It was, by far, the biggest ETH Denver ever.
ETH Denver 2018 had 3,000 people (ETH price $600, post-ICO mania)
ETH Denver 2019 had 4,500 people ($100 ETH, deep bear market)
ETH Denver 2020 had 6,000 people ($300 ETH, right before March Covid crash)
ETH Denver 2022 has 12,000 people ($3,000 ETH, after 2 yrs of growth)
After arriving at the venue and seeing how many people had come to check out the conference, I had a small ‘oh shit’ moment with regards to how many new people were at the conference.
Ethereum has grown so large…would the 2018-2020 ETH Denver vibes that I loved so much still be there?
Would so many new entrants and new projects change the culture of ETH Denver to something I wasn’t used to?
Will it still be the same ETH Denver that I knew and loved?
The answer: Absolutely yes. The ETH Denver vibes that I fell in love with back in 2018 had scaled beautifully.
The ETH Denver culture wasn’t diluted; it was amplified.
For those of you that missed ETH Denver, have no fear. We’ll get you downloaded on the best talks and the hottest gossip.
We’ve curated a list of talks and panels for you to listen to, as well as a list of my takeaways from the event.
Must Watch ETH Denver Panels
Here’s my curated list of the talks that I thought were some of the best talks at the conference.
You can find ALL of them on the ETH Denver youtube, and there are so many hidden gems in there, it’s worth surfing through.
1. Steps to the Digital State & Open AMA - Vitalik Buterin
I think the ‘Digital State’ is just another word for the metaverse. If we’re building a new world, I’m so grateful Vitalik is helping us understand how to build it in ways that will be long-term sustainable and inclusive.
He also talks about Denver’s increasingly critical role in building out Web3!
2. Web3 in politics and Lobby3 - Andrew Yang
This talk was not a part of the scheduled programming. That’s because Andrew Yang just decided to show up at ETH Denver. Andrew recently announced Lobby3, which is a new political organization that leans into the best properties of Web3 to help coordinate effective pro-crypto lobbying in Washington.
Andrew reveals an incoming executive order out of the Biden administration charging various agencies with producing clarity and legislation to help regulate the Web3 industry.
That sounds scary, but it’s also an opportunity!
Tune into the talk to hear what Andrew has to say!
3. The Off-Chain Internet - Evin McMullen
Evin McMullen has completely Disco-pilled me🕺 💊.
The world of decentralized identity is a tough nut to crack, and I think she’s cracked it. On-chain NFTs are a dead-end for self-sovereign identity in the metaverse. “Who you are” as an identity is not something openly viewable by everyone with an internet connection, like how your Ethereum address is.
Instead, decentralized identity is going to be built by off-chain verifiable credentials.
Get Disco-pilled by watching her talk at ETH Denver🕺 💊
4. The Road to Ethereum 2.0 - Panel
MacKenzie Sigalos, Cayman Nava, Alex Stokes, and Preston Van Loon is an all-star lineup.
MacKenzie is new on the scene to me. I met her at the conference after someone informed me about a new CBNC crypto reporter on the scene who had a deep understanding of this industry who knew how to ask the right questions.
She moderates an all-star panel of Ethereum builders who all unpack the nuances of “the road to Ethereum 2.0” (although remember, the ETH 2.0 nomenclature is deprecated; it’s sadly a really sticky meme)
5. Ethereum PoS and Our Solar Punk Future - Danny Ryan
In this talk, Ethereum researcher Danny Ryan focuses on the transition to Proof of Stake.
This talk is split into two halves:
A technical explanation of what does and does not change in PoS
A comparison on PoS vs PoW security and an illustration of the fundamentals about who PoS is theorized to be so much stronger than PoW
Especially on the heels of Lyn Alden recently tweeting what is, in my information, misinformed about PoS, this part of the talk was a great resource to easily illustrate the strengths of PoS that are a far better justification than what Lyn Alden stated on Twitter and her blog.
6. Transcending Individualism and Collectivism - Erik Voorhees and Kevin Owocki
Kevin Owocki and Erik Voorhees, both Coloradans, sometimes get into Twitter spats about debates over public goods.
We took the crux of their argument to a main-stage conversation (moderated by yours truly 💁♂️)
7. Crypto is Here to Set You Free - David Hoffman
Self-shill on this one; this was my talk!
Article coming on Wednesday.
8. How to Contribute to DAOs - Tracheopteryx
Trach is years ahead in his thinking about how DAOs will eventually become organized.
He had an additional talk that I can’t find, but this one is also very good.
Bonus: The top 5 conference conversations
ETH Denver isn’t just talks! It’s also off-stage vibes, gossip, and announcements!
Here we’re the hotly discussed topics at ETH Denver!
1. Vitalik became a Bufficorn
ETH Denver’s mascot is the magical Buffy the Bufficorn. He’s there every year!
As you could imagine, being Vitalik at an Ethereum conference is pretty overwhelming. Everyone wants to talk to you, and some people just don’t understand that it’s not👏appropriate👏to👏pitch👏Vitalik Buterin👏your👏project👏👏👏.
So in order to escape the onslaught of attention, he decided to be the mascot!
I actually think this is a great symbol of Vitalik’s migration from being deeply involved with Ethereum protocol development to more higher-level philosophy and soft-touches to Ethereum’s progress.
Vitalik’s new role in Ethereum?
Being a meme-cheerleader 🤣
We’re in the future now. Your wealth is no longer in the hands of people who wear suits and ties. It’s now in the hands of a savant wearing a bufficorn suit.
2. Devcon 7 Announced
Devcon 7 was formally announced—October 11-14th in Bogota, Colombia.
3. MakerDAO became cool again
MakerDAO threw its first party ever.
After years of being constrained by the centralized Maker foundation (which was dissolved last year), the full potential of the DAO side of MakerDAO is slowly rearing its head.
MakerDAO has, hands down, the most committed and brightest builders in the org. They were hamstrung by the legal and compliance side of the centralized Maker Foundation, but no longer!
Maker threw a sick party inside of a Church-nightclub, and everyone was raving about it. People at ETH Denver were in agreement, and I’m calling it here:
Maker is cool again.
3. Alt L1s buying love
Many other L1s had a presence at ETH Denver. I met team members from the Avalanche ecosystem, Solana swag was everywhere, and Algorand had their own venue.
Harmony injected an insane amount of cash into both sponsoring ETH Denver, and flying in deadmau5 to DJ their party, drowning out the other events that happened that night.
This isn’t anything new; we see this every single Ethereum conference. There was significant controversy from Devcon 5 in Osaka after many Ethereum community members expressed frustration that the main stage was always talks about non-Ethereum blockchains (at an Ethereum conference), while the Ethereum talks were pushed out to the side-stages and smaller rooms.
There was definitely some of that at ETH Denver. But as NLW said after Devcon 5: “It’s become clear that Alt L1’s are asking the Ethereum community for legitimacy”. It’s been this way for years, and ETH Denver was no exception.
4. Bankless Merch EVERYWHERE
I’d say about 5% of people wore some sort of Bankless Merch. The Bankless collegiate hoodie was very popular. The ultrasound summer tee-shirt was a hit.
But the real winners were the DAO Punks. The tee shirts were EVERYWHERE and were a hot topic of conversation. They’re all DAO Punk shirts, but none of them are the same ;)
5. A lot of Bankless listeners think I’m Ryan
Every once in a while, I’d walk by a Bankless listener and they’d shout out to me “Hey Ryan, I love the podcast!”.
I’ve never been more insulted in my life.
ETH Denver 2023
The biggest takeaway from ETH Denver is: we’ve outgrown the Sports Castle venue.
There were 4 additional venues that also hosted talks, and it still wasn’t enough. There were 2+ hour lines to get into the main venue, which left many people very jaded about the event.
Next year, we need a new venue. At this rate, ETH Denver 2023 will be a 20,000 person conference.
Hello Denver Convention Center?
This is what adoption looks like.
I hope to see you all next year.
Scan this section and dig into anything interesting
Market numbers 📊
ETH dumps -11% to $2,608 from $2,934 last Monday
BTC slumps -12% to $37,270 from $42,630 last Monday
BED sinks -10% to $95 from $106 last Monday
DPI slips -7% to $163 from $175 last Monday
GMI drops -17% to $61 from $74 last Monday
DeFi TVL tanks -15% to $71B from $84B last Monday
L2 TVL rises +1% to $5.9B from $5.8B last Monday
DAI stability fee on ETH holds at 2.00%
Market opportunities 🤑
Alpha Leaks & Yield Farming 🌾
What’s new 🗞️, what’s hot 🔥, & money reads 📚
WHAT I’M & WHAT YOU’RE DOING
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