As the Bitcoin Association 2020 Bitcoin SV Virtual Hackathon submission deadline gets closer, we spoke with one more Bitcoin SV Hackathon project turned successful businesses—TrueReviews—so that we could give the audience final words of advice before they submit their hackathon projects on the August 18.
TrueReviews is an online review platform that allows users to get paid for quality online reviews. The platform uses the BSV blockchain to link reviews to existing purchases so that users can validate that online reviews are coming from real customers and not bots or individuals paid to leave fake reviews.
We had the chance to catch up with Connor Murray, co-founder and CEO of TrueReviews, to learn more about his Bitcoin Hackathon experience, hackathon obstacles, how the team overcame those obstacles, how to be best prepared for the hackathon, and what TrueReviews has in store for the future.
How did the TrueReviews team come together for the Hackathon? Did everyone already know each other?
We grew up together as three brothers. We had been working on various projects for a while and we knew the Hackathon would let us focus on something together.
How did the team come up with the idea for TrueReviews?
I had come up with the idea when traveling internationally and was frustrated at the lack of a proper incentive mechanism to review tour guides who relied on online reviews for their business.
What were the team’s thoughts when creating TrueReviews at the hackathon?
We were happy that the theme of the Hackathon fit the idea for TrueReviews so well; as soon as we saw the theme we went full steam ahead.
What obstacles did the team face at the hackathon?
The time crunch in our hackathon meant mistakes were a big time sink. We spent half the hackathon building the application one way, then decided to ultimately change course and build it a new way. This meant the code wasn’t as polished as we would have liked it.
How did the TrueReviews team overcome the obstacles that they faced?
Communicating with each other and being willing to change things was something that helped us overcome the obstacles that come from a 48-hour hackathon
What are some of the most memorable moments of the Hackathon?
Getting very little sleep
What can Hackathon participants expect in terms of experience, obstacles, judging, etc.?
We knew that the other participants were skilled and driven just like us. Hackathon participants can expect stiff competition and judging from people that truly understand what makes Bitcoin unique. If your hackathon project doesn’t make useful a unique property of Bitcoin, then the judges will see right through it.
What advice would you give participants for the ongoing Hackathon?
Don’t get stressed out and have fun. With the added time available in this hackathon, don’t cut corners!
What is the best way to prepare for the hackathon?
For a shorter hackathon, the most important thing is to be well-rested. For any hackathon, I think being willing to change course if something isn’t working is important. Oftentimes, once you are deep into a problem an outside perspective can help you get back on the right path to solving the problem.
What do you think the BSV ecosystem needs that it currently lacks?
We need more function from wallets available to application developers. Wallets currently make it really easy for application developers to use the micropayments feature of Bitcoin available to users, but we also need more complex key management available to enable really unique use cases.
What does TrueReviews have in store for the future? What are TrueReviews’ next steps?
We are developing Veritas, a hardened backend infrastructure that allows any point of sale system to link reviews to valid proofs of purchase. We are extending Veritas to be useful in situations outside of just online reviews—a simple API call will allow applications to issue and manage unique on-chain smart objects easily.
Register here before August 18 to join the Bitcoin Association 2020 Bitcoin SV Virtual Hackathon.
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