Cointelegraph was on hand May 31–June 1 in Vienna for the Central European Bitcoin Expo, for which Cointelegraph was a media partner.
With about 200 attendees, 14 exhibitors and 29 speakers, the atmosphere was casual and open; it made people more approachable than at larger such conferences. “The great news is that everyone enjoyed the conference, and it was also a proof of how important these events are and why they should be held,” organizers said in a statement.
Speakers at CEBE 2014 included Richard Stallman, David Johnston, Adam Vaziri and Charlie Shrem (speaking via webinar from New York).
Saturday’s talks and presentations focused more on specific topics such as Bitcoin in Europe, China and the US. Representatives from a number of companies presented their ideas on Bitcoin’s usefulness as a payment system, its future, and what it can do for charities and nonprofits.
Sunday got off to a late start thanks to the previous night’s party. Talks and presentations Sunday veered more toward the scientific and technical.
“CEBE was a great experience, set in the prestigious location of the Vienna University of Technology,”
said itBit’s Antony Lewis, who participated in an investment panel discussion Sunday afternoon.
“Vienna was an appropriate place to have the first Central European conference as the home of Austrian Economics, a school close to the heart of many virtual currency advocates. I loved the friendly and collaborative atmosphere, the accessibility of participants and speakers, and the smashing Bitcoin Party on Saturday evening. I am already looking forward to the event next year — who knows what it will bring!”
“It was exciting to see so many faces in Vienna, especially the teams who are giving birth to Bitcoin 2.0 like Counterparty, Ethereum, and Mastercoin,”
said Joel Dietz, who launched the crypto-crowdfunding platform Swarm there.
The content was brillant, it was fascinating to meet European counterparts and it was impressive to observe the gradual evolution of conference material since last year from bitcoin as a disruptive payment system and international medium of exchange to bitcoin 2.0 as the total disruption of financial services via decentralisation.
The organizers did a very good job to bring together the most important Bitcoin experts and entrepreneurs from Continental Europe.
CEBE 2014 was a great conference! The contrast between the classical architecture of the university and the hyper modern ideas of the cryptocommunity was really inspiring!
Dr. Richard Stallman
CEBE2014 was smaller than other conferences I have been to, but more more... "personal" I guess. Smaller conferences tend to mean that all the attendees, whether it's just someone new of the street, or someone considered a celebrity in the bitcoin world, are much more approachable, and making high profile contacts is much easier. The conference went very well in my opinion, and if there were any issues, the organizers did a great job at making them invisible. Being small, it was also much more flexible, accommodating schedules and the realization that not too many people showed up in the early morning by shifting all the speakers forward an hour. All in all, it was a pretty good experience.