Network
Launch Date
Consensus
Note
Sepolia
Oct 2021
PoW
Like-for-like representation of Ethereum
Görli
Jan 2019
PoA
Proof-of-Authority
Kiln
Mar 2022
PoS
Post-Merge (for ETH2), shadow fork of the mainnet
Kintsugi
Dec 2021
PoS
DEPRECATED, use Kiln; post-Merge (for ETH2)
Ropsten
Nov 2016
PoW
DEPRECATED, use Sepolia; the Merge to happen on Jun 8, 2022
Rinkeby
Apr 2017
PoA
DEPRECATED, use Görli and Görli Faucet
Kovan
Mar 2017
PoA
DEPRECATED, use Sepolia or Görli
List of active and deprecated Ethereum testnets, including Kintsugi.
Features
Optimistic rollup 
ZK-rollup 
Proof
Uses fraud proofs to prove transaction validity. 
Uses validity (zero-knowledge) proofs to prove transaction validity. 
Capital efficiency
Requires waiting through a 1-week delay (dispute period) before withdrawing funds. 
Users can withdraw funds immediately because validity proofs provide incontrovertible evidence of the authenticity of off-chain transactions. 
Data compression
Publishes full transaction data as calldata to Ethereum Mainnet, which increases rollup costs. 
Doesn't need to publish transaction data on Ethereum because ZK-SNARKs and ZK-STARKs already guarantee the accuracy of the rollup state. 
EVM compatibility
Uses a simulation of the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM), which allows it to run arbitrary logic and support smart contracts. 
Doesn't widely support EVM computation, although a few EVM-compatible ZK-rollups have appeared. 
Rollup costs
Reduces costs since it publishes minimal data on Ethereum and doesn't have to post proofs for transactions, except in special circumstances. 
Faces higher overhead from costs involved in generating and verifying proofs for every transaction block. ZK proofs require specialized, expensive hardware to create and have high on-chain verification costs. 
Trust assumptions
Doesn't require a trusted setup. 
Requires a trusted setup to work. 
Liveness requirements
Verifiers are needed to keep tabs on the actual rollup state and the one referenced in the state root to detect fraud. 
Users don't need someone to watch the L2 chain to detect fraud. 
Security properties 
Relies on cryptoeconomic incentives to assure users of rollup security. 
Relies on cryptographic guarantees for security. 
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HACKATHON PREPARATION GUIDE

8 Essential Tips on How to Prepare for a Web3 Hackathon

Get Tips and Tricks from Experienced Web3 Developers on Preparing for Hackathons
Last Updated:
August 3, 2022

Often hosted by blockchains, like Ethereum or Solana, or focused around specific events, like EthDenver, web3 hackathons bring together a community of developers, designers, and blockchain enthusiasts to transform innovative web3 hackathon ideas into minimum viable products (MVPs) in a short period of time.

Because hackathons are good for beginners, it's important to prepare for the event to extract the most value from the experience. This article will highlight a few preparations you can take to make the most of your experience.

Why is preparing for web3 hackathons important?

Preparing for a hackathon is important because the environment is often fast-paced, you will be using new technology, hackathons have specific judging criteria, and you will be competing against ambitious teams of builders.

Hackathons are great opportunities to learn new skills, showcase your work, and connect with other developers, but it is also competitive and often has an accelerated format. With large prize pools to incentivize participation, this environment can be difficult for beginners to adjust to.

For example, Solana Summer Camp is offering $5 million in prizes and seed funding for their hackathon happening from July 11th - August 16th, 2022, with 1000s of people participating around the world, and 100s of submissions that will be competing for top prizes.

How to Prepare for a Web3 Hackathon

First, understand the timeline of the hackathon. Many hackathons take place over the course of a weekend allowing people with full-time work schedules to participate, but some web3 hackathons last multiple weeks allowing for more substantial projects to be built.

Before you commit to a hackathon, make sure your schedule allows you to make an appropriate time and energy commitment. If you're schedule is clear, and you're determined to build something, here are the some important steps to complete in your hackathon preparation. 

1. Study the Hackathon Rules and Judges

When you visit the hackathon website, you will usually see a number of resources to help developers prepare for the hackathon including tracks, prizes, ideas, as well as the two most important areas to study: the rules and judging criteria.

Before you do anything else, make sure you have a clear understanding of what kinds of projects the organizer is hoping to see during the hackathon, who will be judging them, and what they will be looking for.

If you're planning to focus on a specific track, research the nuances and align with that specific track's key priorities.

2. Start Thinking About a Web3 Hackathon Idea

Coming up with innovative web3 hackathon ideas can be challenging, especially if this is your first time attending a web3 hackathon. During your hackathon prep, consider these strategies for brainstorming ideas before your hackathon starts:

  1. Build a solution to a problem you’ve observed personally
  2. Think about composable building blocks that unlocks new products
  3. Research lists of topics and ideas provided by the hackathon organizer
  4. Review the winners of other hackathons
  5. Find a web2 product or solution that would benefit from web3 technology

You don’t have to select which idea you’re going to build until you meet your team and start the hackathon, but these prompts can help you ideate projects before your hackathon begins.

3. Prepare Your Web3 Tech Stack

Since hackathons can take place over a short period of time, you’ll want to make sure your web3 tech stack is prepared ahead of time. This would include actions like signing up for a web3 developer platform like Alchemy, downloading desktop clients, and getting familiar with the hackathon organizer's unique tools.

Here’s a shortlist we’ve prepared of what to get ready when you’re preparing your hackathon tools:

  • Choose your Integrated Development Environment (IDE) such as Remix IDE
  • Create a GitHub repository for your hackathon code so you and your teammates can collaborate effectively
  • Signing up for a free blockchain node provider like Alchemy
  • Look into different smart contract development frameworks such as OpenZeppelin
  • Create a local testing environment such as Hardhat or Foundry
  • Get testnet Goerli tokens for deploying smart contract on a testnet  

Learn the hackathon organizer's tools

In addition to your standard tech stack, take time preparing by learning how to use. the tools the organizer wants builders to build with.

Organizers will often put together extensive documentation on the hackathon website to help people navigate the tools and information that would help new developers in the ecosystem.

Because hackathon organizers are trying to encourage building on their platforms, prioritize building applications that integrate their tools.

4. Start Building a Team

There are many ways of finding peers to work with on a hackathon project including working with organizers, accessing hackathon channels in Discord, in developer-centric DAOs, or communicating with builders talking about the event on social media.

You can also come to the hackathon with a group of people that you already know well. Since your team will be small, usually 3, 4 or 5 people, it’s best to have people who have different skill sets that will complement each other. 

5. Find Templates for Submissions and Presentations

To submit a project to a hackathon, teams will typically need to produce a write-up, video, and/or presentation that demonstrates what their project does, how it works, and make a pitch to it's importance.

Because your team will be building up until the last minute, prepare a list of previous winning submissions, presentation templates, and write-ups that can be repurposed for your team's submission. By preparing templates for your app submission, you can make a strong case for your project, and put yourself in a good position to win.

Judges often like to see things like a clear problem statement and value proposition paired with a working demonstration of your project. It’s okay to start simple, and focus on the specific problem area you're trying to fix so you aren’t overwhelmed with having to build too many features at once.

6. Take Appropriate Security Measures

While hackathons are generally friendly and safe places to build, take the proper security precautions before you arrive such as leaving hardware wallets at home, not traveling with seed phrases, and purchasing a privacy screen filter among other preparations.

Don't let a good learning opportunity like a hackathon turn into a liability.

7. Pack Your Gear

If you’re going to participate in a weekend hackathon every minute counts, and preparing all the right gear will help you make the most of your time. Make sure you have your charger, backup chargers, phone chargers, a battery bank, extension cords, power strips, and anything else to keep your tools working.

Additionally, you can prepare snacks, drinks, and other personal items that will enable you to stay focused on your work like noise cancelling headphones, your favorite hoodie, and even your favorite mechanical keyword.

8. Get a Good Night's Sleep

The last thing you need is to be sleep deprived and groggy when sprinting to turn an idea into a fundable web3 project. Get a good night’s sleep so you can be ready to enter the hackathon with a clear mind and good attitude.

At the end of the day, the goal of web3 hackathons is to learn, build something cool, and have fun. While there will be intense moments and it may get stressful, remember why you signed up and make the most of your experience.

HACKATHON PREPARATION GUIDE

8 Essential Tips on How to Prepare for a Web3 Hackathon

Get Tips and Tricks from Experienced Web3 Developers on Preparing for Hackathons

Often hosted by blockchains, like Ethereum or Solana, or focused around specific events, like EthDenver, web3 hackathons bring together a community of developers, designers, and blockchain enthusiasts to transform innovative web3 hackathon ideas into minimum viable products (MVPs) in a short period of time.

Because hackathons are good for beginners, it's important to prepare for the event to extract the most value from the experience. This article will highlight a few preparations you can take to make the most of your experience.

Why is preparing for web3 hackathons important?

Preparing for a hackathon is important because the environment is often fast-paced, you will be using new technology, hackathons have specific judging criteria, and you will be competing against ambitious teams of builders.

Hackathons are great opportunities to learn new skills, showcase your work, and connect with other developers, but it is also competitive and often has an accelerated format. With large prize pools to incentivize participation, this environment can be difficult for beginners to adjust to.

For example, Solana Summer Camp is offering $5 million in prizes and seed funding for their hackathon happening from July 11th - August 16th, 2022, with 1000s of people participating around the world, and 100s of submissions that will be competing for top prizes.

How to Prepare for a Web3 Hackathon

First, understand the timeline of the hackathon. Many hackathons take place over the course of a weekend allowing people with full-time work schedules to participate, but some web3 hackathons last multiple weeks allowing for more substantial projects to be built.

Before you commit to a hackathon, make sure your schedule allows you to make an appropriate time and energy commitment. If you're schedule is clear, and you're determined to build something, here are the some important steps to complete in your hackathon preparation. 

1. Study the Hackathon Rules and Judges

When you visit the hackathon website, you will usually see a number of resources to help developers prepare for the hackathon including tracks, prizes, ideas, as well as the two most important areas to study: the rules and judging criteria.

Before you do anything else, make sure you have a clear understanding of what kinds of projects the organizer is hoping to see during the hackathon, who will be judging them, and what they will be looking for.

If you're planning to focus on a specific track, research the nuances and align with that specific track's key priorities.

2. Start Thinking About a Web3 Hackathon Idea

Coming up with innovative web3 hackathon ideas can be challenging, especially if this is your first time attending a web3 hackathon. During your hackathon prep, consider these strategies for brainstorming ideas before your hackathon starts:

  1. Build a solution to a problem you’ve observed personally
  2. Think about composable building blocks that unlocks new products
  3. Research lists of topics and ideas provided by the hackathon organizer
  4. Review the winners of other hackathons
  5. Find a web2 product or solution that would benefit from web3 technology

You don’t have to select which idea you’re going to build until you meet your team and start the hackathon, but these prompts can help you ideate projects before your hackathon begins.

3. Prepare Your Web3 Tech Stack

Since hackathons can take place over a short period of time, you’ll want to make sure your web3 tech stack is prepared ahead of time. This would include actions like signing up for a web3 developer platform like Alchemy, downloading desktop clients, and getting familiar with the hackathon organizer's unique tools.

Here’s a shortlist we’ve prepared of what to get ready when you’re preparing your hackathon tools:

  • Choose your Integrated Development Environment (IDE) such as Remix IDE
  • Create a GitHub repository for your hackathon code so you and your teammates can collaborate effectively
  • Signing up for a free blockchain node provider like Alchemy
  • Look into different smart contract development frameworks such as OpenZeppelin
  • Create a local testing environment such as Hardhat or Foundry
  • Get testnet Goerli tokens for deploying smart contract on a testnet  

Learn the hackathon organizer's tools

In addition to your standard tech stack, take time preparing by learning how to use. the tools the organizer wants builders to build with.

Organizers will often put together extensive documentation on the hackathon website to help people navigate the tools and information that would help new developers in the ecosystem.

Because hackathon organizers are trying to encourage building on their platforms, prioritize building applications that integrate their tools.

4. Start Building a Team

There are many ways of finding peers to work with on a hackathon project including working with organizers, accessing hackathon channels in Discord, in developer-centric DAOs, or communicating with builders talking about the event on social media.

You can also come to the hackathon with a group of people that you already know well. Since your team will be small, usually 3, 4 or 5 people, it’s best to have people who have different skill sets that will complement each other. 

5. Find Templates for Submissions and Presentations

To submit a project to a hackathon, teams will typically need to produce a write-up, video, and/or presentation that demonstrates what their project does, how it works, and make a pitch to it's importance.

Because your team will be building up until the last minute, prepare a list of previous winning submissions, presentation templates, and write-ups that can be repurposed for your team's submission. By preparing templates for your app submission, you can make a strong case for your project, and put yourself in a good position to win.

Judges often like to see things like a clear problem statement and value proposition paired with a working demonstration of your project. It’s okay to start simple, and focus on the specific problem area you're trying to fix so you aren’t overwhelmed with having to build too many features at once.

6. Take Appropriate Security Measures

While hackathons are generally friendly and safe places to build, take the proper security precautions before you arrive such as leaving hardware wallets at home, not traveling with seed phrases, and purchasing a privacy screen filter among other preparations.

Don't let a good learning opportunity like a hackathon turn into a liability.

7. Pack Your Gear

If you’re going to participate in a weekend hackathon every minute counts, and preparing all the right gear will help you make the most of your time. Make sure you have your charger, backup chargers, phone chargers, a battery bank, extension cords, power strips, and anything else to keep your tools working.

Additionally, you can prepare snacks, drinks, and other personal items that will enable you to stay focused on your work like noise cancelling headphones, your favorite hoodie, and even your favorite mechanical keyword.

8. Get a Good Night's Sleep

The last thing you need is to be sleep deprived and groggy when sprinting to turn an idea into a fundable web3 project. Get a good night’s sleep so you can be ready to enter the hackathon with a clear mind and good attitude.

At the end of the day, the goal of web3 hackathons is to learn, build something cool, and have fun. While there will be intense moments and it may get stressful, remember why you signed up and make the most of your experience.

ALCHEMY SUPERNODE - ETHEREUM NODE API

Scale to any size, without any errors

Alchemy Supernode finally makes it possible to scale blockchain applications without all the headaches. Plus, our legendary support will guide you every step of the way.

Get started for free
Supernode footer
ALCHEMY SUPERNODE - ETHEREUM NODE API

Scale to any size, without any errors

Alchemy Supernode finally makes it possible to scale blockchain applications without all the headaches. Plus, our legendary support will guide you every step of the way.

Get started for free
Supernode footer