By Michael Li, Vice President, Data at Coinbase
Hackathons have been a long-standing and important part of Coinbase culture, as they give our engineering teams the opportunity to collaborate with one another and experiment directly with the tools that are enabling a new era of open finance.
At Coinbase, we acknowledge that Web3 unlocks a whole new realm of possibilities for developers that are largely yet to be explored. In order to pursue these possibilities confidently, engineers need to have a baseline knowledge of the ecosystem, the Web3 stack, and key smart contract concepts across different blockchain protocols.
This year, we used the time set aside for the annual Coinbase hackathon to kick off Smart Contract Hack Days to give all of our engineers a crash course in Web3 development for real-world applications.
Time to BUIDL
In December, we assigned all participants to project pods of 5–10 individuals which were led by an experienced Coinbase team member that had been through in-depth blockchain engineering training. Following a day-long crash course in Solidity (developer tools and workflow), each pod had 48 hours to build a demo that would be judged on product, engineering, and design.
Participating pods had a chance to score one of the eight awards and crypto-forward prizes. Award categories included People’s Choice (selected by the entire audience), Learning Showcase (the pod that demonstrated the most learning through working on their project), Judges Choice (overall judge favorites), Best Executed (evaluates quality, teamwork and overall execution), and Most…