The IOHK Summit 2019 was on April 17th and April 18th in Miami Beach, Florida.
IOHK is a technology company that aims to utilize peer-to-peer innovations to empower the three billion people without access to adequate financial services. Founded in 2015 by Charles Hoskinson and Jeremy Wood, IOHK has funded and facilitated high levels of collaboration between academia and business, and most notably, applied blockchain in several unique ways across its projects. Today, IOHK stand as a decentralized company with over 200 employees and contractors around the world.
IOHK has three core products:
- Cardano – IOHK’s marquee product. Cardano is a proof-of-stake blockchain platform based on peer-reviewed research.
- Daedalus – a fully-featured wallet client for ada holders to store their tokens.
- Ouroboros: the cryptographic algorithm that powers Cardano.
The goal of the IOHK Summit was to promote community engagement, networking, and to connect IOHK’s over 200 decentralized employees under one roof in the beautiful and sunny Miami Beach.
The event included speakers from various parts of the industry, featuring IOHK CEO and co-founder Charles Hoskinson, Cardano’s Senior Product Manager, IOHK’s Director of African Operations John O’Connor, Chairperson of the Cardano Foundation Nathan Kaiser, and the Founder and CEO of Wolfram Research Stephen Wolfram.
IOHK also highlighted the Shelley development release of Cardano. Named after Percy Bysshe Shelley, the Romantic poet and author of Ozymandias, the Shelley development phase aims to send the message that when building an empire, the creators must be mindful of leaving a good legacy. This is known to be the “decentralization phase” for Cardano.
If you missed the event, you can catch the full Day 1 and Day 2 live streams:
Jon Woodard, CEO of Wolfram Blockchain Labs (WBL), has been exploring potential areas of collaboration with IOHK. “I was inspired by the IOHK Summit — Charles Hoskinson, Jeremy Wood, and their team are focused on providing research-based solutions for the construction of the Cardano DLT and helping those solutions advance the world,” comments Jon. “Their work stands in stark contrast to companies that talk about innovation as almost a sort of zero-sum competitive game.”
Eddie Garcia, CEO of a dApp building on Cardano called Gig, spent much of the event meeting members of the IOHK and Cardano community. “It wasn’t your average Crypto-conference or Blockchain event where everyone is talking about the price of Cryptocurrencies- it was really all about science and technology and specifically about the development of Cardano,” notes Eddie. “For us building a dApp on Cardano, it was really cool to meet the key players of this community in person and share ideas.”
IOHK Summit 2019 wrapped up with a show by Creedence Clearwater Revisited and the Steve Miller Band, two phenomenal bands if I must say so myself.
The closing of the event echoed common sentiments I picked up throughout the two days:
- Openness and accessibility – For many, this was the first time meeting the IOHK and Cardano teams, and key players, the dozens of usually nameless and faceless brains behind the polished products we know, were given a spotlight to demonstrate what they’ve been working on. Even in the closing event, Charles Hoskinson, the former CEO of Ethereum and Founder of IOHK on the Forbes Crypto Rich List with an estimated net worth of $500 – $600 million, was bouncing around to make sure everyone was having a good time.
- A focus on the classics – As a music geek myself, I try to understand the psychology of what certain projects would bring to their events. Creedence Clearwater Revisited and the Steve Miller Band are old school cool, which aligns with IOHK’s vision to build something that stands the test of time.
Overall, it’s great to see companies like IOHK host events that connect their teams and eager developers into the ecosystem.