The weather was getting really hot in Madrid, and as much as we wanted to go out after so many months of confinement, we were better at home protecting ourselves from the merciless sun. The first prototype of Smartists was nearly ready when I wrote my monthly summary of our progresses for my team. I checked our roadmap and I considered it may need some refreshing.
In the Blockstack community, I was proposed to apply to the KERNEL program. I found it so appealing that I decided to apply despite my technological limitations. When I received the invitation to join as a fellow I was as excited as humbled. Now that we are facing the last days of the program, I can tell that this is being a unique learning experience for me, and it has provided such good advices and tools to help on my way to develop Smartists! I am deeply grateful to the organizers as well as to those in the Blockstack community who proposed me this wonderful adventure.
Some wonderful projects were presented and have been developed during the program, but at my stage I decided to take the learning track and concentrate in the workshops, the wonderful curated materials offered weekly in the KERNEL community page, as well as the extraordinary fireside chats. I cannot help leaving here my favorite one with Juan Benet.
We have been using Notion for organizing the week, Airmeet for events and sitting on tables for insightful group conversations, as well as Slack for following-up. A few of us come from different blockchain ecosystems, yet Gitcoin and Ethereum are hosting the program. For this reason it has been also very interesting for me, because so far I confess I was never really attracted by the Ethereum blockchain approach.
Ethereum · Vision & Culture
Now I am understanding much better how Ethereum envisions the opportunities blockchain technology offers. I also see how Ethereum is trying to build a culture, with some shared beliefs... In KERNEL we were proposed excellent curated materials for insightful reflections beyond technology itself. I heard some repeated expressions and some of the commented readings made me wonder about this space of debate with so many likeminded people. As a writer I know how words can be really powerful and define mindsets. Words influence and in this context they can have actual consequences in the way Dapps are built to provide services, and how business models are shaped.
When going back to Blockstack in Discord during these weeks I realized how this is such a very different community. So far, I haven’t seen Blockstackers especially interested in building a culture, not that we don't like swags and take very much care of the brand (the community is actively participating in the rebranding right now). However, this is a fairly technical community, with very unique individuals. In the Blockstack Forum, I have had the chance to read a few contrasting opinions on general matters from members who expressed themselves freely, and this was so refreshing! I must say that in Blockstack it is rare to go beyond technological matters, and I actually believe that, as blockchain technology is going to affect most aspects of our lives and the way we communicate with each other, it is good that some philosophical questions are reflected and discussed by developers. Maybe this is something to learn from KERNEL: exchanging views from different backgrounds can foster creativity, which is essential in these times.
Stacks Ecosystem · Mission & Vision
Blockstack is a mission and vision driven ecosystem and the Stacks Foundation is taking the original PBC project to the next level in order to further the mission of building a user owned internet.
As an Internet user I see Technology as a means for human beings providing unprecedented experiences, although I still see that unique human experiences usually go far beyond technology. I also understand that we are walking a path where physical and digital experiences may at some point blend in phygital experiences. Therefore, in such scenario, I deeply hope that human individuals will keep the right to choose freely, and decide what everyone considers better. In that sense, now more than ever, I am happy to be in the community fighting for the fundamental rights of users on the web.
This summer I have heard a lot about Privacy and Freedom in KERNEL and also in the Blockstack community, although I see those terms can have different meanings in every ecosystem. Therefore, developers in every ecosystem have different ways to put blockchain at the service of users. Personally, I feel it is a privilege and a responsibility to participate in this moment and help build the web3 as a user owned internet - not only as a Blockstack evangelist, but as a DApp designer.
As you can imagine, all these recent learnings, my readings and reflections have made of my quiet summertime weeks an actual brain-stormy time. Hopefully my KERNEL experience will bring new good ideas for Smartists. Now, my prototype needs some improvements before turning into an mvp, so our roadmap will be refreshed accordingly.
I am very excited about the new course to come. See you!