NBT AG, Weeve, and JKVC take the stage during Wayra Deutschland’s visit to Factory Berlin

The intersection of IoT and blockchain is ripe with possibility. Factory Berlin’s recent IoT and Blockchain brunch explored imaginative use cases and presented startups working in that space to a growing community of people focused on innovative technologies and new kinds of business ideas. Here’s the lowdown.

New Technologies Require New Thinking

After Factory Berlin kicked off the morning welcoming their partner Wayra Deutschland, Jeff Katz (below) of JKVC took the stage. He broke down essentials of blockchain and discussed the ‘marginal improvements’ we’ve seen so far, where is it still hard to find big success stories in Industry 4.0 and the sharing economy, especially when we are still measuring GDP that excludes a lot of people. Katz urged the audience to not be dissuaded by complaints of no “killer use cases” in IoT and Blockchain, calling that a ‘failure of the imagination’.

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Instead he showed two very creative use cases: one dealing with spectrum auction where telecommunication companies have to bid for network quality. Instead of following a pattern where that bidding happens every few years and is restricted to a monopoly, he suggests a hyperlocal infrastructure provided by many and paid based on who uses it.

The second use case involved an Urban Farm based on community participation to produce food and fish in a carbon neutral way but still make money. Katz issued a call to arms, saying that “This is our generational challenge.” We need to take steps to think differently to address climate change and its impact.

Company Building in IoT & Blockchain

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Next up was Director of Blockchain Technology, Cornelius Schneider (above), from IoT & Blockchain company builder Next Big Thing AG. He encouraged people with ideas in these areas to approach him.

He explained the need to develop the building blocks of the Machine Economy, namely: IoT, decentralized tech, and Machine Intelligence as a business intelligence layer. He was honest about certain blockchain limitations saying that is precisely why we need a security layer for decentralized hardware. Here's a recap:

  • Blockchain has many positive characteristics but also limitations that require navigation;
  • This argues for a focus on a security layer for decentralized hardware. See our CTO, Jasmin Skenderi's take on that here;
  • Getting the timing right in the hype cycle matters. Don't hesitate but keep a long-view; 
  • Finding business models that fit is critical. A tech company builder's perspective can help.

Did we pique your interest in starting a Blockchain idea? Just reach out to discuss! 

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Data is the New Gold

Following Cornelius, Prof. Dr Sebastian Gajek (below), CTO and Co-founder from NBT Venture, Weeve, hopped up on the Factory Berlin stage. Weeve offers innovative ways to utilize IoT through security-by-design technology and customized solutions, operating across industry verticals of IIoT, Automotive, Supply Chain, Mobility and Logistics. Sebastian broke down challenges presented by the machine economy, mostly focusing on both security and trust. He says, “Data is the new gold, and we’ve got data coming from everywhere. All that’s left is to turn it into gold.”

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