Skip to main content

First prize winner at PolkaWorld Hackathon 2019

· 5 min read

PolkaWorld Hackathon 2019 is the world's first substrate developer competition co-hosted by Polkaworld, Polkadot, and Web3 Foundation. The event was held in Hang Zhou, China, for two days, from September 21st to 22nd.

Developers and innovators from New Zealand, Australia, Beijing, Shanghai, and Hangzhou formed 20 teams, hacked for 36 hours, to develop and create innovative prototypes with Substrate.

Castor Network Pitch 1
Castor Network Pitch 2

Prize Pool#

The total prize pool is worth 385,000 RMB.

  1. First prize (1 team): 140,000 RMB + PolkaWorld Incubation
  2. Second prize (2 teams): 70,000 RMB + PolkaWorld Incubation
  3. Third prize (3 teams): 30,000 RMB + PolkaWorld Incubation

Additional prizes:

  • Crowd’s Choice Award (1 team): a bonus worth 5000 RMB
  • The Most Innovative Project Award (1 team): a prize of 5000 RMB
  • The Most Practical Project Award (1 team): a bonus worth 5000 RMB


  • Dr. Gavin Wood - Co-founder of Polkadot; Founder of Web3 Foundation; CWO and Chairman of Parity Technologies; Co-founder of Ethereum and former CTO of the Ethereum Foundation; author of the Polkadot White Paper and the Ethereum Yellow Paper
  • Tang Wei - Parity Software Engineer
  • Nicole Zhu - Parity Software Engineer
  • Alistair Stewart - Web3 Foundation Lead Researcher
  • Guanghua Guo - Co-Founder of ChainX
  • Bin Lu (咕噜) - Founder of Bihu
  • Ming Zong - Chief Investment Officer of HashKey Capital
  • Jocy Line - Founder of IOSG Ventures
  • Wenbo Yu - Executive Director of Fenbushi Capital
  • Yanfeng Chen - Co-Founder of LongHash
  • Sota Watanabe - Founder of Stake Technologies
  • Antoine Najjarin - Founder of Speckle
  • Xiliang Chen - CTO of Laminar and Polkadot Ambassador
PolkaWorld Judges 1
PolkaWorld Judges 2
PolkaWorld Judges 3

ps. A huge thank you to all the judges above who gave meaningful comments and suggestions to the participating teams in this Substrate Developer Contest.

Day 0: Preparation#

After submitting our applications and got admitted, contestants were given 21 days to prepare for the hackathon. After a lot of brainstorming and discussions, our team, A.T.Dot, decided to develop a content co-creation platform using Substrate tackling the following pain points:

  1. Content Bottleneck: Quantity, Quality, and Coordination
  2. Content Creators are taken advantage of by centralized platforms:
    • Distribution channels are controlled by large centralized businesses.
    • The vast wealth generated by Web2 is not fairly distributed.
  3. Lack of a value loop between original work creators and derivative work creators.

Day 1#

Registration and Hacking#

I arrived at Hang Zhou on the morning of 21st September and met up with my teammates at the hotel prepared by the event organizer. We then headed to the event site together and started hacking.

During the day, three workshops were given by the Web3 Foundation and Parity Tech engineers on the following topics:

  1. Building a private blockchain with Substrate
  2. PoW Consensus on Substrate
  3. Web3 Foundation Grants
Castor Network Pitch 1
Castor Network Pitch 2

Sleepless night#

We found countless bugs, and it was annoying. We didn't sleep at all and spent the whole night till morning debugging. Luckily, we did clear all the major bugs in time.

Day 2#

Pitching Castor.Network#

I represented A.T.Dot and pitched our project Castor Network. In short, Castor Network is a blockchain built with Substrate that focuses on the co-creation of content and providing a win-win situation for participants through a value loop.

We try to:

  • Increase content quantity by reducing content censorship and providing decentralized distribution channels
  • Increase content quality through content curation from communities
  • Increase content coordination by incentivizing creators to co-create, cite and build on previous work through crypto-economics
  • Protect intellectual property rights by providing the ability to trace content and find relationships between them

Pitch Deck: Download


Castor Network Pitch 1
Castor Network Pitch 2

Winning first prize#

Due to the overall completeness of the project and excellent onstage performance, our group won the first prize award. The prize was awarded by Dr. Gavin Wood, Co-Founder of Polkadot.

Receiving First Prize Award 1
Receiving First Prize Award 2
Receiving First Prize Award 3
Receiving First Prize Award 4
Me and Dr. Gavin Wood