OpenBazaar Hackathon with Duosearch and Blockchain: Money in London

Last week a few members of our team had the opportunity to travel to London to co-host the first organized OpenBazaar hackathon along with Duosearch and our CEO, Brian Hoffman, presented the next day at Blockchain: Money.

On November 5th, the hackathon was hosted in the beautiful Canary Wharf business district at Level39, Europe’s largest technology accelerator for finance, retail, cyber-security and future cities technology companies​. The teams worked all day on their projects and we ended up with 7 demos at the end! See the summary below:

 


Oops, went off on the count, here! This was #6 and the following was #7

Again mistaken, this was #7!

The results were impressive, we were intrigued to see how many working projects the attendees produced. This kind of collaboration is an important part of the continued evolution of OpenBazaar and we are so glad to know there is such support and understanding for the project out there. Very soon will be working to facilitate more of these kinds of events!

In which places around the world would you like to see more hackathons organized?

November 6th & 7th was Blockchain: Money at etc. Venues 155 Bishopsgate, an exceptional conference venue in the heart of the city. It hosted an excellent lineup across 2 full days of thought leaders within the blockchain and financial technology space. The event had a significant focus on Bitcoin specifically within the blockchain sphere which we were pleased to see. It was great to connect with friends new and old and to support Brian’s presentation of OpenBazaar in the context of its present and evolving abilities to facilitate trade directly on top of Bitcoin.


A big thanks to Duosearch and the Blockchain: Money team for having us join them in these events and to everyone who attended either or both with us! We are excited to travel around the world and see the ways Bitcoin is being adopted and the kind of impact OpenBazaar is having for more and more people wanting to help facilitate truly free trade with no borders.

Here are a few more images of some of the amazing views we experienced around London:

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OpenBazaar Ecosystem: Bitcoin Mitchell

In these posts we take a look at some unique members of the OpenBazaar ecosystem. Today our featured shop is Bitcoin Mitchell, the OpenBazaar outpost of one of our very active community members! You can find Bitcoin Mitchell on OpenBazaar, on Duosearch and at BitcoinInformation.info

Bitcoin Mitchell Store on OpenBazaar

 

Tell us a bit about yourself?

I am Mitchell, a 22 year old IT professional with a Bachelor’s degree who is currently working as a backend developer. I’ve been into Bitcoin since 2013, but heard about it in 2012 from a friend of mine. I did look into it at the time, but downloading the Blockchain took me too long so I quit and never looked back until a year later.

When I started with Bitcoin I was a standard newbie. I didn’t know much about Bitcoin and mostly visited faucets. After a while I found out about BitVegas (now defunct) and starting going there quite often. They had the highest paying faucet at that point in time, but I usually just spent it on the games they had. My favorites were the pig races and the roulette table. I got my first 3BTC from there as there was a discussion between two people and their point of argument was that rich people could help more than poor people because they had the resources to do so. Anyway, to prove their point someone started randomly gifting people Bitcoins. Lucky me!

Around this time I started my own website named BitcoinInformation.info where I wanted to put some information about Bitcoin (I wrote it as BitCoin back then). With the Bitcoins I received I set up my first faucet, which also caused me to register my Bitcointalk account (now called Mitchell, instead of BitcoinInformation). I was the first one to offer both direct Bitcoin withdrawals and Peerbet withdrawals.

I kept the faucet running till 13 December 2013 and BitVegas ended up as a scam during the same month, which was a huge disappointment to me. I spent a lot of time there, made a few Bitcoins, helped BitVegas out with moderating and even helped build their new map. Well, such is life.

Going on, I stayed on Bitcointalk and on 07 January 2015 I became the Dutch Moderator, mostly because I happened to be quite active. Eventually I was assigned as a Patroller as well and started moderating two more sections (Project Development and Beginners & Help). Another big part of my life is my Bitcoin collection which I started on 30 September 2013. That was the day that I bought my first Bitcoin related coin, which was the Bitcoin Specie. I currently own 215 unique cryptocurrency related items of which at least 80% are coins.

What do you make/sell?

I’m currently selling some left over Steam gifts and Silver Wallets, which I am the official seller for on both OpenBazaar and Bitcointalk. And yes, we will be doing a Black Friday sale. 😉

Why are you selling your product on OpenBazaar?

I like getting Silver Wallets out to the masses as it’s an amazing looking coin. Also, OB seems like a platform that could get to an eBay level so I would like to be involved with it before this happens.

How has your experience been with OpenBazaar so far?

Setting up OB was pretty easy on Windows, but when I tried to migrate to a VPS I couldn’t because the DB contained absolute paths. I reported this and it was quickly fixed. After this small hiccup I setup OB on my VPS and it has been running pretty smoothly after setting up a script that checks the OB store servers and restarts it if need be.

How familiar are you with Bitcoin?

I’m pretty familiar with Bitcoin and how it works. I wouldn’t call myself an expert or even good as I don’t know the exact technical details, but I know enough to understand how it works and I’m able to explain it to others.

What changes would you like to see to OpenBazaar to make it more useful for you?

IPFS would be an amazing start same as TOR support. I’ve missed quite a few messages because of how OB currently works, so IPFS would be a great improvement. Other than that, plugins/extensions would be pretty neat. A very useful example would be Slack integration so that I can be notified on a Slack channel about a product that has been bought.

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OpenBazaar Ecosystem: Stone Banana

In these posts we take a look at some unique members of the OpenBazaar ecosystem. Today our featured shop is Stone Banana, a one-of-a-kind custom apparel shop featuring great custom artwork! You can find Stone Banana on OpenBazaar, on Duosearch and at StoneBanana.com

Stone Banana Apparel on OpenBazaar

Tell us a bit about yourself?

I’m a psych/neuroscience lab manager at Purdue by day (sanghalab.com) and an aspiring entrepreneur by night. It was less than a year ago that I realized I wanted to create my own business. Artistic design has always been an interest of mine, and I had sort of stumbled into t-shirt design around the same time I became interested in starting a business. So, Stone Banana became my first go at it!

What do you make?

Stone Banana makes graphic tees. I create the designs, sometimes starting from scratch, sometimes from my other artwork, and sometimes from the photography of others (with their permission :)) I have some other products that I’m currently designing, and hope to use the profits from t-shirts to bring these to market.

Why are you selling your product on OpenBazaar?

I use OpenBazaar because I love bitcoin and am super excited to participate in a truly open-source market. I’ve done a bit of cryptocurrency mining/trading in the past, but I never felt like I was bringing bitcoin any closer to being mainstream. Not being a coder, participating in OpenBazaar has been a way for me to help advance not only bitcoin, but the idea of truly peer-to-peer markets. (Beyond just talking to my friends and family about it!)

How has your experience been with OpenBazaar so far?

It’s been great! Of course I’m very excited for 2.0 and the features that come with it, but 1.0 has done the job of providing a fee-free trading platform that’s allowed my shop to be discovered as well as to complete many transactions successfully!

How familiar are you with Bitcoin?

Fairly familiar. I’ve done a good bit of reading and watching Andreas (among others :)) speak on the topic over the last 3 years. I’ve done some mining and trading, and pretty much been an advocate since I first found out about it! But, I’ve never actually bought anything besides other currencies and cloud mining until OpenBazaar!

What changes would you like to see to OpenBazaar to make it more useful for you?

I think the main thing for me right now would be an improved product upload interface, as well as selector options within each product such as size, color etc.

What products/promos are you featuring this season?

I have a great new design in my shop for Halloween! We’ll also be doing a 10% discount through October–then stay connected to see what I’ll be doing for Bitcoin Black Friday!

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Weekly Development Update: October 7, 2016

We wrapped up the design and are now finishing testing a product that will make setting up an OpenBazaar shop incredibly simple. We’ll release this service next week, so if you or someone you know wants to open an OpenBazaar shop, keep an eye out for that.

Front end

Current version

  • The auto-reconnect code was removed–We may re-implement it later in a more robust manner
  • The duplicate user bug was fixed in Discover
  • The zoom and rotate buttons on the avatar in Settings/Page are disabled until one is loaded
  • Multiple minor bugs were fixed

Client commits

Back End

2.0

  • Continued work on order processing for the 2.0 server

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OpenBazaar Ecosystem: Coffee Milk Syrup

In these posts we take a look at some unique members of the OpenBazaar ecosystem. Today our featured shop is Coffee Milk Syrup and it’s pretty much what it sounds like, shop owner Adana makes her own “coffee syrup” that’s like chocolate syrup—just made with coffee! You can find Coffee Milk Syrup on OpenBazaar, on Duosearch and at CoffeeMilkSyrup.cf

 

Coffee Milk Syrup shop on OpenBazaar, decentralized peer to peer Bitcoin marketplace

 

Tell us a bit about yourself?

I make coffee syrup during the day, and I’m a writer, and a web developer at night. I’m originally from Houston, TX, though I’m currently living in Dallas.

What do you make?

I make Some Awesome Coffee Syrup. It’s similar to chocolate syrup, but it’s made with coffee, so it makes everything taste like coffee.

Why are you selling your product on OpenBazaar?

I work from home, and getting your product or service out there is hard to do sometimes. I saw OpenBazaar as a way to put myself into a market that would likely appreciate that, and that I was in full control of. I was originally with OpenBazaar when you guys first launched, and I joined in and made a quick store, and within just a few days I had my first sell. With the products that I make and sell, It’s hard to get customers without doing a lot of actual footwork: going to stores, food trucks, and vendors alike, locally. That also limited me on how I was able to sell my product and I think OpenBazaar is exactly where I need to be to get my big start with Coffee Syrup.

How has your experience been with OpenBazaar so far?

My experience has been great. I am in the Slack community for OpenBazaar and the admin, vendors, and people in general are very helpful and polite. I’ve had questions ranging from “How would I setup my name properly” all the way to “how do I migrate my OB server from Windows to Linux” and I’ve had all of my questions answered thoroughly. The community for OpenBazaar is full of great people.

How familiar are you with Bitcoin?

Quite familiar with it. I have traded across the exchanges and used bitcoin locally to buy food, or books even. I like the usability of it and of course bitcoin contracts are amazing for vendors like myself.

What changes would you like to see to OpenBazaar to make it more useful for you?

I think that implementing a similar system to “Reviews” would be nice, but have it be something along the lines of “Store Updates,” similar to “News” I suppose. This way, when a store are preparing to put items on sale, say for the Black Friday event, the customers or people that come to the store would be able to know about the sale, through looking at the updates/news tab.
This would help keep the customers in the know about products. If I only had a limited amount of items, I could make a post about how it has a limited inventory and how long the sale would last. It would help with customer questions. Any scheduled downtime could be listed there as well, as about once a week, I take my store offline for about 3-4 hours for system updates.

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OpenBazaar Ecosystem: Space for eCommerce

In these posts we take a look at some unique members of the OpenBazaar ecosystem. Today we interview a vendor selling store hosting, Space for eCommerce, who has been connected to the OpenBazaar community since the beginning! You can find Space for eCommerce on OpenBazaar at @storefore/store, on Duosearch here and on their own website at spacefore.com

Space for eCommerce on OpenBazaar

Tell us a bit about yourself?

Brian Dunbar – husband, father of five, Catholic, IT professional since 1990. The majority of my career I’ve been a systems administrator: making sure servers are up and pumping out bits. Systems administration is a speciality that rewards attention to detail and obsessive nitpicking, and I do pretty good with it.

I no longer recall how I heard about OpenBazaar. I had a few days of downtime over the Thanksgiving holiday in 2015. I installed the prototype, played around with testnet. That software, the constant and excellent progress, the folks working for OB1, and the investment they’d attracted, convinced me that OpenBazaar has real potential. Like this;

  • The last thirty years have demonstrated that cheap, de-centralized and open will beat closed, centralized and expensive.
    • There used to be a plethora of network protocols – ways of connecting computers. Token Ring, ARCNet, and many others. Ethernet came along and was (then) inferior to everything else on the market. It was cheap. It was not owned by IBM: anyone could build an ethernet network card. Now, ‘ethernet’ is synonymous with ‘network’. Nobody uses anything else.
    • CompuServe, BIX, AOL, DELPHI, Prodigy used to be ‘the’ way to go online – you paid up each month, logged into a walled garden and did your thing with the community. The world wide web came along and … they are no more.

Examples are legion, I need not belabor the point. They have one thing in common. They were closed and expensive and are now in the museum next to the apatosaurus skeleton.

OpenBazaar is cheap, decentralized and open.

The lesson is clear.

What do you make?

I provide managed hosting for open bazaar stores. I’ll keep the stores running, backup on a regular basis, update when required, and whatever fiddly bits are needed to keep the store online and visible. My market are shop owners, business guys, regular folks who want to sell their goods, and leave the ‘IT stuff’ to the professionals.

Why are you selling your product on OpenBazaar?

It is, basically, a space that is under-serviced by guys like me. Market opportunity! I hope to become one of the go-to guys for hosting, and leverage that into other services in the OB space.

How has your experience been with OpenBazaar so far?

Pretty good, thanks for asking.

There are issues – but there are always issues with software, and the OB1 team is kicking ass on bugs. And they’re busy in active development for OpenBazaar 2. I’ve taken it for a spin and it’s going to be a tremendous improvement on the current Open Bazaar.

How familiar are you with Bitcoin?

I’d heard of Bitcoin but prior to last year I’d never done anything with Bitcoin.

Which is odd, I suppose, because politically I’m Anarcho-Capitalist. I should be thinking about it night, and day.

What can I say – I’m a busy guy. It simply hadn’t come up.

Now .. I’ve got a side project for getting involved with bitcoin mining, and I’m plotting how to get a zcash mining farm up and going … it’s a good life, if you don’t falter.

What changes would you like to see to OpenBazaar to make it more useful for you?

I have a few suggestions. All of them will have to be addressed in order for OpenBazaar to be useful in the long run.

  • Multiple Users and roles
    • Eventually, an actual business with multiple users is going to use OpenBazaar. Those guys operate with multiple people, who have different roles. They’ll demand accountability, and role separation. This isn’t just those guys being anal, but in many cases required by law or auditors.
  • Credentials
    • The credentials are in plain-text configuration file, which value is stored in a database. This works, and it’s reasonably secure. I understand why it’s that way. But we can do better!
  • Failover
    • I want to put a load balancer in front of an OpenBazaar store, running on multiple servers. Downtime for one server does not mean downtime for the store.

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Giveaway: Win 1 of 3 Copies of “The Internet of Money” by Andreas Antonopoulos

 

AndreasBookLast week we were excited to hear Andreas Antonopoulos – security expert, author and Bitcoin evangelist – announce his new book for sale on the Joe Rogan Experience podcast!

(ICYMI here it is: Andreas Antonopoulos Introduces Joe Rogan to OpenBazaar)

Now can find The Internet of Money on his OpenBazaar store–AND for the next week you can also enter to win one of 3 copies that we are giving away! Just check out your options for entering below. You can comment on Twitter & Reddit once per day for the next week to gain even more entries! Winners will be announced next Thursday, September 22nd.

(This giveaway is US only. Sorry international friends; we are working up policies to be able to include you in future giveaways!)

 

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

If you have a book – or anything else – that you’d like to sell for Bitcoin, try out OpenBazaar. If you need help, join our Slack community and let us know.

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