We had a phenomenal last week at PlebLab. Vibes are high coming back from TABconf. Whenever we hang out with bitcoiners in a different city, we return with much more passion and drive than when we left. Talking amongst ourselves inside the lab this past week, we realized that we all follow our dreams, not in a hunky-dory way, but in a self-actualization way. Last Friday, we accomplished another goal we had set for ourselves at the beginning of the year. We wanted to get involved with the University of Texas to facilitate the developer growth of Bitcoin in our city.
PlebLab visited The University of Texas at Austin for a Bitcoin founders discussion panel with the students at UT. Our goal was to inspire the next Bitcoin builders in our city. These students are primarily post-graduates looking to learn more about the Bitcoin space in and outside of Austin. The PlebLab crew shared insights from their journeys into the Bitcoin space, specifically how to get started building on Bitcoin in Austin.
"I landed in Austin because I knew from being on twitter that there was a huge contingent of Bitcoiners in Austin that were similar to me, they were just really enthusiastic about Bitcoin...So I think I met Kyle like maybe two days after I arrived in the U.S. and he told me about this idea for this Bitcoin incubator he was building with his friends. And we met and like the next day he just reached out and he said "all right, you got a desk you're in". So I think I was the first one into this new Bitcoin incubator, and that pretty much changed my my whole life at that stage...
That opened up so many doors and opportunities to not just be in a community of like minded people, and would be sitting beside some powerhouse developers like Super Testnet and other founders...One of the things I always say is that if you want to get into building your own business or working in Bitcoin, or you're somebody trying to figure out your skill set and getting it into Bitcoin in some way: The best way you can do that is just surround yourself by other Bitcoiners. It's all about community, it's all about getting yourself around like minded people and having those conversations where you mention your skill set, somebody else has another skill set with an idea. You come together, you sit down for an afternoon, and you just like you got an idea, you can go from there...I've certainly benefited immensely from it." - John founder of Zaprite
They each told their stories of what led them to bitcoin, how they began their journeys as founders, and even what brought them to PlebLab. They shared some key lessons they learned along the way, what challenges they are still facing, and the path they see to overcoming them. They took questions from the students, who are also aspiring bitcoin developers. We aimed to provide a well-rounded panel of speakers, as each founder held a specific personal goal and view of the space and drew upon their unique experiences.
" As I failed at startup after startup, I began to realize that part of the problem might be that I'm not networking with people, I'm not around other builders, l'm learning slower than I might around other people, maybe I can fix the problem. I'm moving to a bigger city where there are more people building... And I knew there was a bunch of Bitcoiners here in Austin. We also toured, the United States looking for a new city to live in and we had a great time here in Austin. So I moved here and tried to get around people here as much as possible and I recommend anyone who is ambitious in their career, wants to be a founder or anything, Just don't, don't go off and live somewhere and build alone. Find people who are doing things similarly enough to you and, join them, get their help." - Keyan founder of Stacker News and PlebLab.
At PlebLab we firmly believe that supporting developers is vital for Bitcoin to continue. Free and open-source development is critical to breakthroughs in Bitcoin. The FOSS ethos has aligned with our core mission at Pleb Lab since our early days. We wanted to share resources and avenues for the University of Texas postgraduate students that Bitcoin is a road worth taking.