My Cryptolina Experience
As a young blogger in the Bitcoin world, my job consists of a lot of waiting. Waiting for that dude to email me back, waiting for my articles to be published so I can get paid, just waiting.
A few weeks ago while waiting, however, I got an interesting email.
My friend John Scianna hit me up one night, telling me we’re going to Cryptolina, the first ever bitcoin conference in the Carolinas.
The brief message read “Yo K Cruz we goin’ to Cryptolina in North Carolina with the College Cryptocurrency Network”.
TheCollege Cryptocurrency Network (CCN) is a student advocacy and outreach group that brings together students, staff, faculty, and other interested parties to promote education on blockchain technologies on college campuses. It was founded by University of Michigan students Jeremy Gardener and Daniel Bloch.
My friend John Scianna also informed me that MerchantCoin sponsored a mansion for the CCN to stay in for the weekend in North Carolina. I didn’t need much convincing.
I got online and purchased my ticket. I took the plane and slept the whole flight. After the flight, I Google Map’d the mansion address and looked for bus routes. The closest bus would leave me about 6 miles from the lavish crib. I decided to walk it.
While walking in the hot sun it hit me: wait, why not hitchhike? I put one thumb up.
About 3 minutes later, I got a tap on my shoulder. It was a dude who saw me “thumbing it”, as he said. I accepted his ride without any reluctance and during the ride, we spoke about bitcoin, life, and other cool stuff. It turns out this old dude was from my hometown.
I got to the house and began relaxing from there. I was the first one to arrive out of the big group that crashed at the mansion. The first thing I did was take a nap, a nice one. A few hours later I was awoken by different members of the CCN. These guys are pretty awesome
I met both cool and smart friends from all over the United States and even connected about potential business projects. After mingling with my new homies, I began preparing myself for the Conference going on the next day.
During the conference I watched cool talks and networked a tonload, the stuff I always do. You should see me in action.
I saw a lot of talks from many different individuals from different fields in the bitcoin ecosystem. I listened to riveting talks about everything from breakthroughs in bitcoin security, to Venture Capitalists, as well as a spine-tingling talk from Edmond C. Moy, the 38th Director of the US Mint Department.
Edmond Moy was in office when the decision to bailout the banks in the 2008 financial crisis was made. He disagreed with it at the time, in hindsight saying that what the banks needed was competition; he proclaimed that this is what bitcoin is here for. During the talk, I remember looking at the members of the CCN in head-nodding approval. After his speech about the future of money, he stood around and talked to us for about half an hour, being kind in his suggestions and advice to us youngsters.
The college community in general is important for the bitcoin world because its inherent ambition forges new friendships and new ideas. The relationships formed within this network will create many companies and projects in the economy. This ultimately creates a good labor pool for emerging Bitcoin companies to hire from.
One indirect consequence of this new economy is students dropping out of college because in the Bitcoin world, college means close to nothing. It’s all about the skills you bring to the table.
These guys (including myself) are smart, young, and a lot of times get stuff done quicker than older folks, and have a quicker way of doing it. There is, however, a shortage of women in the bitcoin community, but let’s save that for another article.
Nonetheless, we are the future.