Moscow Blockchain Hackathon Winning Team Proves the Permacoin Algorithm

News and Analysis

The team that developed infrastructure for modular blockchain systems dubbed Scorex and proved Permacoin algorithm won the blockchain hackathon in Moscow. The winning team consists of just two people, Alexander Chepurnoi, who developed NXT in 2014 and 2015, and currently develops Scorex, and M. Dmitri, who had recently found out about the blockchain technology. Apart from winning the contest to the jury’s opinion, the Scorex team also won the people’s choice award, thus receiving a doubled prize.

About Permacoin. A new Permacoin is generated when a user downloads a big data base content like digitized archives (USA Congress Library, for instance, ‘weighs’ around 200 terabytes). It is convenient, as a computer retains a reserve copy of main intellectual treasures of the humankind. The system will check the presence of data on a computer (uploading to a cloud is prohibited), and grant user a permacoin, if he or she wishes to. Permacoins may be exchanged for real money.

The event was held at HSE.lab on November 13 through 15. The contestants had 48 hours to implement their projects’ prototypes or perform one of the tasks provided by the hosting parties, being, national clearing depository, and Lykke project engaged in color coins.

Eventually there were several solutions for the depository’s task, which was a voting system of 1 votes an hour capacity. The team that created the best solution for the depository also presented their own system for corporate voting with blockchain. A young developer from Minsk who had never worked with blockchain whatsoever provided the best solution to’s task, which concerned automation of cryptocurrency balance updating.

The majority of coders at the hackathon had never worked with blockchain systems and cryptocurrencies before. However, they created interesting and solicited solutions both for traditional and cryptocurrency businesses.

Shortlisted, among others, were a play-and-learn system for kids with integrated cryptocurrency for incentivising, a bitcoin wallet posting backups into the blockchain, a tool for merchant sales control, a crypto-investment platform, and a reputation system.

“We received over 200 applications, with half of the applicants stating they had a blockchain-based concept. On the first day, there were 25 concepts, with 14 teams coming through to the finals with ready and qualitative prototypes. Attending the event, including the trainings and lectures, were 250 people. Attending the blockchain seminars we held in cooperation with QIWI before the hackathon were over 200 people during a month,” says Anastasia Turina, HSE.Lab’s Head of Prototyping Center.

Many contestants won mentoring and free consultations with payment processor QIWI, Future Fintech accelerator, and the national clearing depository. The event also included a set of seminars hosted by cryptocurrency and blockchain experts. Lykke’s Richard Olsen spoke about colored coins and the future of the blockchain technology, while Factom-winning founder of Blocknotary Igor Barinov spole about ownership registration on the blockchain. Alexander Chepurnoi, Scorex team lead, presented a seminar on private blockchain systems, and’s representative Alexander Ivanov spoke about blockchain crowdfunding, including legal matters involved therein.

Blockchain became one of the most discussed issues in Russian expert communities. Previously, Russian Central Bank stated they launched a working group to research the technology, while QIWI started developing BitRouble. Distributed ledgers became interesting to both state-run and private entities, however, the regulator’s decision remains the most important factor for blockchain’s and bitcoin’s perspectives in Russia.

“Blockchain, above all things, is an evolutionary phenomenon. However, currently the technology is at its early hype phases. In a while the hype will dissolve, many will get disappointed, and only then they will return to the blockchain tech again. There are lots of unsolved problems that eventually will disappoint many. But it’s a short-term approach. In the long run, the blockchain will change the world within next 5 to 10 years,” Georgi Chesakov, retail crediting business establisher, formerly the chairman at Tinkoff and OTP commented to ForkLog.

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