On Monday the 26th of February we organized our first Blockport Community Meetup at the Tech-Hub TQ (our office) in Amsterdam. It was a great evening where we shared our progress and took the chance to interact with the community on a personal level.
We recorded all the talks held on the evening so that all of you who couldn’t make it to the venue don’t have to miss out.
During the meetup there were five talks, which ended with an Ask me Anything (AmA) where everyone had the opportunity to ask questions. This article summarises each of the individual talks and shows you the starting time in the video respectively.
Kai Bennink — Co-Founder & Chief Strategy
Kai Bennink, Blockport’s co-founder and driver of strategy, opened up the evening with a warm introduction that included some insight to the crypto universe as a whole, as well as some insight into the backstory and mission behind Blockport, whereby a strong emphasis was made on the “social” aspect of the platform, and on the “knowledge-sharing” capacities that Blockport facilitates.
Kai’s talk starts at 00:00
Sebastiaan Lichter — Co-Founder & Chief Product
Second in the line-up of speakers was Blockport’s other co-founder and Bennink’s partner Sebastiaan Lichter, who shed some light on the technical foundations of the platform. Sebastiaan began by addressing what a “decentralized hybrid architecture” means, as this type of architecture is key to the Blockport platform.
With a “hybrid decentralized architecture”, Sebastiaan explains, Blockport combines the best of two worlds, namely the worlds of centralized exchanges, and decentralized exchanges. He concludes that Blockport attempts to incorporate the pros of both systems into one, whilst ultimately leaving the cons behind. Specifically, this is done by keeping investors’ funds decentralized on the Blockchain, but facilitating trades through a fast, centralized system.
Sebastiaan’s talk starts at 04:30
Zowie Langdon — CTO
The third speaker for the evening was Zowie Langdon, Blockport’s CTO and product visionary.
After outlining the history of the Blockport idea and the process of technical validation that was required to actually conceptualize the Blockport platform, Zowie emphasized the role of collaboration that was required for Blockport’s development. Hereby, he notes how a distinctly large degree of his time and effort had to go into the process of building a company culture, recruiting developers and maintaining equilibrium on a people front, alongside actual coding and developing.
More importantly, in looking forward at the near future and with a focus on the technical aspect of the platform, Zowie notes that some minor adjustments have been made to the roadmap and trajectory of the product’s development.
Specifically, in looking at Blockport’s integrations with external exchanges, which have proved to be relatively challenging, the team has decided to move the development and integration of its internal exchange forward in the timeline, enabling users to trade on Blockport itself sooner than planned, some exciting news for investors!
In answering the rhetorical question of “how the Blockport development is going right now”, Zowie happily remarks that Blockport now got a team of 19 developers, noting how fast the recruitment process is going and how they’ve smartly collaborated with remote developers all around the world, saving Blockport immense time over the past few months.
With an active Slack channel and the building of an open, honest and value-driven dev- culture, the development of Blockport is certainly “on track”.
Zowie’s talk starts at 08:00
Spiros Mantadakis— Chief Design
Spiros begins his talk with an introduction to the various “assumptions” that had to be made not only when conceptualizing Blockport, but also whilst designing the Alpha version of Blockport. “Luckily”, Spiros notes, “most of our assumptions were correct”, meaning that the development and processes behind Blockport were able to continue in line with the roadmap.
In further discussing the design approach to Blockport and the strategy behind it, Spiros discusses how, from a UX perspective, the platform isn’t solely intended for beginner traders, nor is it solely intended for experienced traders. Rather, he emphasises, the Blockport platform is intended for both, allowing young and old, clueless and experienced traders to easily and smoothly experience Blockport’s “social trading” phenomenon.
In discussing Blockport’s approach to design, a strong emphasis is made on the inclusive nature of designing, whereby not only Blockport team members, but community members too are included in the iterative design process, resulting in an interdisciplinary approach that often sees final versions being pushed out sooner rather than later.
Spiros provides a sneak-peek preview into what the new Blockport platform itself will look like. Without giving too much away, his preview showed great insight into the minimalistic, straightforward and simple nature of the new Blockport platform. You can see one of the snapshots below.
Spiros’s talk starts at 28:45
Pascal van Steen — Head of Growth
In first looking at the Blockport marketing strategy itself, Pascal outlined the value of culture in Blockport’s marketing approach, strongly emphasizing the role of a “fail forward” approach, whereby failure is embraced, as long as it is failure in the right direction and that it is eventually built on by success.
Similarly, Pascal notes the value of testing in Blockport’s approach, highlighting the role of not overspending on a particular channel or campaign without having adequately tested it first.
From the point of execution, Pascal also offers a look at the different tools required to successfully launch the token crowdsale, which is worth noting sold out in 12 minutes. From Linkedin automation tool Ducksoup to Facebook ads, various strategies were used to grow the Blockport Telegram community from a few hundred to 14000.
Lastly, in looking ahead, Pascal highlights the role of certain product-marketing components within the Blockport app itself, such as a referral program, and emphasises the role of Branding and PR in leading up to the full platform release in Q1 of 2019!
Pascal’s talk starts at 37:00
After Pascal’s talk the Meetup opened up to the crowd with an “Ask Me Anything” fireside chat.
The AmA starts at 44:00