DFINIHack Hackathon Announces Winning Internet Computer Projects

The event explored new use cases, such as a dapp that builds smart contracts from lines of code and tools for managing data and identities.

The DFINITY Foundation just completed DFINIHack, a two-day internal hackathon for projects built on the Internet Computer blockchain. The event was the foundation’s second internal hackathon, following the Tungsten Hackathon in June 2020.

DFINIHack had several goals, chief among them being:

  • Explore new use cases on the Internet Computer: As an all-purpose blockchain platform, the Internet Computer is suitable for a wide variety of use cases that have not yet been explored.
  • “Dogfood” the developer experience: We wanted to assess existing resources and documentation in order to update them and improve the developer experience.
  • Promote a builder’s culture at DFINITY: As new developers join the team, we want them to have experience building an app end-to-end on the Internet Computer.

Almost 50 percent of the entire DFINITY staff took part in DFINIHack, whether as a participant, resource, or a judge, with 18 teams participating across five different time zones. The judging panel included DFINITY’s top technical talent, including:

  • Dominic Williams — Founder & Chief Scientist
  • Jan Camenisch — CTO
  • Johan Granstrom — Director of Engineering
  • Samuel Burri — VP of Engineering
  • Paul Liu — Staff Engineer
  • Lomesh Dutta — VP of Growth
  • Igor Lilic — Senior Developer Relations Engineer
  • Carsten Jacobsen — Senior Developer Relations Engineer

Excitingly, DFINIHack delivered three overall winners as well as three runner-up projects. Here they are, in no particular order:

Winning Projects


Sidekick is a dapp running on the Internet Computer that can build canister smart contracts from a few lines of code. For example, enter:

foreign export ccall “canister_query go” main

main = putStrLn “Hello, World!”

…then click a button to compile and download a WebAssembly binary and follow the instructions to deploy to the Internet Computer.

The project was created by Ben Lynn, the “L” in BLS signatures. It also demos a puzzle maker that makes a Sokoban puzzle game, showing off a compiler that compiles a compiler that compiles to a game.

IC Vault

IC Vault ensures the secure synchronization of data between devices via the Internet Computer via end-to-end encryption (i.e., the Internet Computer cannot see any cleartext).

Team members include Yvonne-Anne Pignolet, Thomas Locher, Stefan Kaestle, Helge Bahmann, Timo Hanke, and Rüdiger Kapitza.



PrivIC (pronounced “privacy”) provides identity management on the Internet Computer.

Users can visit the PrivIC app directly to manage their identity, which consists of attributes such as name, date of birth, email, and phone number, or do so as part of the register/sign-in flow from an app. They can also grant (and subsequently revoke) the access of requesting apps to any of these attributes.

Apps on the Internet Computer can integrate directly with PrivIC to authenticate their users and request access to specific identity attributes.

Team members include Matt Grogan, Hamish Peebles, Julian Jelfs, Emma Peretti, and Jeff Anderson.

Runner-Up Projects


DeFind is a staking-based search engine. With the internet today, search engines use web crawlers to feed data into secret algorithms. For advertisers, this creates the wrong incentives — they may be incentivized to trick the web crawler with invisible text, for example, or generate fake traffic through bots. The result is that it’s hard to predict rankings for websites, and that small changes to algorithms can have devastating consequences.

The solution is a public algorithm, where advertisers, developers, and entrepreneurs can directly determine its configuration.

Team members include Nathaniel Gurian, Ryan Croote, Leon Tan, and Tommy Cao.

IC Notary

IC Notary is a timestamped notarization service that allows users to prove that they held a document (or an arbitrary file) at a certain point in time. The user can upload the file to IC Notary, and also search and download previously uploaded files.

Team members include John Plevyak, Akos Olasz, Ian Blenke, and Ognjen Maric.

IC Netboot

IC Netboot allows developers to boot a virtual machine (VM) directly from a canister, making the boot infrastructure decentralized and unstoppable. Furthermore, it can be a failover for VM data for applications like zookeeper. Lastly, this is a proof of concept for talking to the Internet computer over legal protocols like TFTP/DHCP/iPXE.

Team members include Janesh Chhabra, Khushboo Bindlish, Faraz Shaikh, Rahul Subramaniyam, and Ivan Malison.


Start building at smartcontracts.org and join our developer community at forum.dfinity.org.

DFINIHack Hackathon Announces Winning Internet Computer Projects was originally published in The Internet Computer Review on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.

Publication date: 
10/07/2021 - 18:24

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