Purple Press Developer Dispatch 02
Welcome to the second edition of Purple Press! In this edition, we're serving up a tantalizing spread of all things ETHGlobal Tokyo, with highlights from the hackathon and an exclusive interview with a solo hacker, who bagged the coveted Polygon bounty. Plus, we're diving deep into Polygon zkEVM, exploring some noteworthy projects, and uncovering a few slick new tools to add to your crypto arsenal. This is a blog version of a bi-weekly newsletter that you should definitely subscribe to.
So, sit back, pour yourself a cold one, and let's begin!
Builder’s Buzz, Sushi, and SWAG at ETH TOKYO
From April 14th to 16th, hackers, mentors, judges, builders, and volunteers from around the world converged on the Toranomon Hills Forum for ETHGlobal Tokyo, marking the first major ETHGlobal conference of 2023. With 1070 hackers from 59 countries, all vying for their share of the $375,000 USD prize pool, it was a battle of wits, innovation, and sheer determination. Across 22 workshops and 9 talks, the builders unleashed a wave of energy that lit up Tokyo like a neon sign.
Polygon Labs was a “Presenter partner” tier sponsor, giving away $20k in prizes, and led by oceans404.eth and sushikev.lens. Polygon Labs had 4 prize tracks: 3 high-quality tracks (X-Chain hack with zkEVM, Identity hack with Polygon ID, Public Goods hack with Gasless/Batched transactions); and 1 “pool prize” track for Web3 beginners.
The challenge of problem-solving and the allure of bounty drove footfall, but delicious sushi, piping hot ramen, and heaps of SWAG clinched the deal.
Polygon stole the show with a whopping 138 out of 310 total projects being built on chain. 🔥 The quality of these projects was exceptional, and involved some crazy hacking chops and out-of-the-box thinking.
We had the chance to catch up with a solo hacker who achieved an impressive feat: bagging the Polygon bounty with his Polygon zkEVM implementation. In this exclusive interview, he shared his insights and experience with us.
Kanishk Khurana is a Fullstack Web3 Developer who's passionate about Solidity, frontend frameworks, and building communities. He's a Developer Relations Engineer at Lumos Labs, a hackathon geek, and winner of the Polygon and Scroll bounties at EthTokyo. Kanishk loves mentoring students and spreading blockchain awareness. Whether he's at a tech meetup, attending a hackathon, or advocating for technology, he's always happy to chat with fellow developers.
Coding isn’t just a skill, it’s a superpower.
ETH Tokyo Project:
Project link: https://ethglobal.com/showcase/axel-0j1yc
Q: Tell us about your developer's journey so far?
A: My journey started back in 8th grade when I discovered QBasic, and I was hooked from then on! My passion for building amazing things drove me through high school, where I competed in my first Toyota hackathon. Despite not taking home the trophy, I never lost my love for development. Now, I'm a full-stack Web3 developer with an insatiable hunger for learning. I've built some interesting projects over the years, including winning the Polygon bounty at ETH Tokyo and creating an AR-powered mobile app that won the Grand Finalist Award at the Smart India Hackathon. But my learning journey is far from over. I'm always on the lookout for new skills and technologies to master. Right now, Docker, Hyperledger, and React Native are at the top of my list of skills to acquire.
Q: What inspired you to participate in EthGlobal Tokyo?
A: Well, I've been a hackathon enthusiast for quite some time now. And after missing out on ETH India last year, I was determined not to let another opportunity slip by. When I heard about ETH Tokyo this year, I knew it was my chance to rub shoulders with some of the best devs from around the world and learn from them directly. I was hungry for exposure to new ideas and perspectives, and Tokyo offered the perfect platform for that. Plus, let's be real, who wouldn't want to explore such a vibrant and exciting city, while they're at it?
Q: Talk to us about the project that bagged the Polygon bounty at EthGlobal?
A: My project was called Axel. The idea behind Axel was to create a platform that connects developers with clients and starts streaming payments as soon as the work begins. So, picture this — a developer wants to participate in a hackathon and needs some extra funds to do so. With Axel, they can take up some work and ensure that they're receiving a continuous stream of payment for the time they spend working. It's a win-win situation for both the developer and the client! To bring Axel to life, I used Superfluid for streaming and connectivity, and Polygon zkEVM Mainnet Beta as the backbone for the entire project. With P2P trading, it's not uncommon for bank accounts to get locked if they're trading with a non-verified, non-government authority. But with Polygon zkEVM, you don't need to know the specifics of the trading account, and you can rely on zero-knowledge to create a steady stream of transactions.
Q: What was that one idea that got you hooked on Polygon zkEVM?
A: What I find so powerful about using zk as a technology is the fact that it allows me to hone in on the exact information that's relevant to me, without getting bogged down by all the irrelevant details and miscellaneous specifics. With zk proofs, I can ensure transaction validity and safeguard funds, which creates trustlessness and security in the system.
Q: How has your experience been building on Polygon protocols?
A: Building on Polygon is a breeze. Unlike most protocols, Polygon provides top-notch documentation and user-friendly tools that make it easy to deploy on the network. As someone who has been building on Polygon for over a year now, I can attest that it's one of the most advanced and developer-friendly networks out there. The tech is cutting-edge, with new tools and features being added every 6 months. Plus, the community is incredibly supportive and helpful, with developers and DevRels alike always willing to lend a hand. Plus, Polygon Labs also encourages the community to create helpful documentation, which can help to save hackers in clutch situations.
Q: What do you think are the biggest hurdles for developers, and how can they be overcome?
A: From a hackathon perspective, I believe that providing developers with more use case-driven technical content that helps them understand how to build on the network, in real-time, is crucial. Another challenge for most hackers is ideation. Coming up with a useful and novel idea can be extremely difficult. To help with this, Polygon Labs could provide a base of innovative ideas that can be built with Polygon zkEVM, Polygon ID, and SDKs, which would be an excellent starting point for developers to create remarkable projects.
Q: Finally, what is your #1 tip for aspiring Web3 developers?
A: I’d say, making the transition from Web2 to Web3 is much easier than making a direct jump to Web3. For aspiring Web3 developers, I would recommend focusing on developing a solid foundation in both frontend and backend development. Understanding MERN (MongoDB, Express, React, Node.js) is essential for building blockchain applications that are both user-friendly and scalable, and then, take it from there.
Deep Dives 📚
For our first deep dive, we're focusing on Polygon zkEVM Mainnet Beta, a popular topic at the ETHGlobal Tokyo hackathon. Whether you're new to the space or an experienced developer, Polygon zkEVM is definitely worth exploring. There is an abundance of videos, tutorials, documentation, and threads spread across the Web, but we've handpicked some of the best ones for you. So let's dive in!
1/ Get Started!
If you're new to Polygon zkEVM and want to learn more, check out the ultimate starter kit in the thread below.
2/ Build your dream project
Whether you want to build a dApp, an NFT project, or a DAO on Polygon zkEVM, we've got you covered.
To build a dApp, check out the reference implementation below.
For NFT projects, here's a guide to get you started.
And if you're interested in building a DAO, bookmark this thread.
3/ Bridge your assets
Want to bridge your assets between Ethereum and Polygon zkEVM? Check out the zkEVM bridge in the Polygon Wallet Suite. It's available for both Mainnet Beta and Testnet.
How it works:
To bridge an asset from Ethereum to Polygon zkEVM,
- Lock the asset in Ethereum using the bridge.
- The bridge contract will mint an equivalent value of the asset on Polygon zkEVM.
- Claim the equivalent value minted asset on Polygon zkEVM.
For a step-by-step guide on how to bridge assets from Ethereum mainnet to Polygon zkEVM Mainnet Beta and vice versa, check out the guide ⬇️.
A range of UI/UX changes have been made to make bridging smoother and much more efficient.
3 Projects on Polygon zkEVM to watch out for
If you're interested in novel implementations of Polygon zkEVM, you'll want to check out these projects.
Native DeFi projects
Clober and D8X are two innovative decentralized exchanges that are leveraging the unique capabilities of Polygon zkEVM to provide new levels of performance and functionality. Clober is the only fully on-chain order book DEX on EVM, while D8X is an institutional-grade perpetual futures DEX that uses advanced derivative pricing and risk management techniques.
Uniswap DAO has recently approved a governance proposal to deploy Uniswap's v3 on Polygon zkEVM. Uniswap V3 is a decentralized exchange (DEX) protocol that enables users to swap tokens and is one of the most widely used decentralized finance (DeFi) applications within the Ethereum ecosystem.
Biconomy, a leading provider of blockchain infrastructure solutions, brings Account Abstraction to Polygon zkEVM Mainnet Beta. With support for gasless transactions, ERC20 gas payment, session keys, fiat on/off-ramp, and batched transactions, Biconomy's SDK is an essential tool for developers looking to build scalable and user-friendly applications on Polygon zkEVM.
Tools we discovered this Week:
Current Web3 testing options are full of limitations and risks. From content leaks to smart contract exploits, major reputational challenges exist in both quality assurance and consistent delivery. StealthTest provides a comprehensive toolset for battle-testing rich Web3 experiences, setting new industry standards for quality assurance, security, and compliance.
The process of allowlisting today has some inefficiencies. For context, enforcing allowlists at the smart contract level usually requires an attestation of some sort (digital signatures or Merkle proofs) to be passed by the user. Spearmint is a free and automated web3 allowlist platform for community founders (e.g., NFT creators) and prospective members (e.g., NFT collectors).
We hope you enjoyed today's edition of Purple Press. Subscribe to our newsletter, tune into the Polygon Labs Blog and check out our social channels to stay up to date on the latest from the Polygon ecosystem.
Together, we can build an equitable future for all through the mass adoption of Web3!