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Holochain Workshop Pittsburgh

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Carnegie Mellon University

5000 Forbes Avenue

Pittsburgh, PA 15213

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Event description


TL;DR: Build a distributed app prototype in a weekend!

Familiarize yourself with a new coding paradigm and learn tools for the rapid development of distributed applications. Holochain is a massively scalable, inexpensive post-blockchain framework for writing dApps. Join co-founder Arthur Brock and members of the Holochain team for this workshop, where you will:

  1. Be introduced to the Holochain project

  2. Learn about use cases, design dApps and form project teams

  3. Attend sessions on Holochain architecture, design principals, alternative crypto currencies, and other "how-tos" of dApp creation

  4. Build a dApp prototype, with hands-on assistance from Holochain developers

  5. Present your project and learn how to continue your development on Holochain


  • Friday Nov 2; 7:00PM—9:30PM

  • Saturday Nov 3; 10:00AM—6:00PM

  • Sunday Nov 4; 11:00AM—6:00PM

Note 1: Friday's session is free and open to the public, and intended for a more general audience. Please arrive between 6:45 and 7:00 pm. Your registration helps us plan appropriately.

Note 2: Tickets are required for Saturday & Sunday -- the fee goes toward food and materials. If the ticket price is a barrier, please contact us for support. Students tickets are free.

Note 3: If you're coming for Saturday & Sunday, Friday evening's session is required.

Note 4: Lunches and light snacks will be provided. Please bring a reusable water bottle and anything else you need to be comfortable during the event.

Why build decentralized applications?

Imagine a world where everyone can interact with no central power in the middle. Imagine a world where we can build a local and global sharing economy (cars, homes, tools, learning...), where everyone can play and contribute to the decisions. A world where we can build sustainable currencies, with no central authority that could sooner or later dictate the rules. A world where we can design thriving economies. This world will run on distributed apps, or dApps. Open source, completely distributed, dApps allow direct peer-to-peer interactions and have evolutionary implications for social coordination.

Holochain enables distributed networks with user autonomy built directly into its architecture and protocols. Data allows the remembering of our lived and shared experiences. Distributing the storage and processing of that data will change how we coordinate and interact. With digital integration under user control, Holochain liberates our lives from centralized control over our choices and information.

Join Holochain co-founder Art Brock and the Holo team for a weekend of training and hands-on support in Holochain architecture, design principles, and app development tools with plenty of work in teams to build distributed software applications.

How to Prepare

Read this overview of Holochain by Moritz Bierling:

Check Out Our Developer Documentation:

Download Holochain:

Read our white papers:

Join the Pittsburgh Chatroom and Meetup group and start meeting the locals:

Get excited:

  • Start thinking about what you want to create

Hackathon Structure

Project co-founder Arthur Brock will introduce people to building in the Holochain framework. We encourage people to come with distributed app ideas. Experience with either JavaScript or Lisp will be helpful, but not mandatory.

Friday evening

  • Includes an introduction to the technology from Arthur with Q&A, followed by an introduction to rapid application development (RAD) tools. This session is free and open to the public. Snacks provided.

Saturday & Sunday

  • Periodic learning sessions alternate with time for hands-on learning. Attendees collaborate on prototype projects closing with a show and tell on Sunday afternoon. Lunch and dinner are provided on Saturday, lunch only on Sunday, and snacks throughout the weekend.

We’re all learning together -- our job is to support you in going as far as you can from where you’re starting.

Location, Transportation

Details TBA... Look to this event page or for an email we send out a week before the event.


Do I need to be a programmer to attend?

Yes and no. This is a workshop for programming distributed apps, however, the schedule is open to first time devs. Holochain is so easy to code on that even new (highly motivated) programmers have built dApps at one of our weekend workshops.

Can the app I want to make be built on Holochain?

The answer is almost certainly yes. Nearly any app can be built on Holochain and in many cases Holochain offers you affordances that other distributed architectures don’t.

I still feel skeptical. What do you say to that?

Good! You should feel skeptical! We’re making some serious claims. Come and see for yourself.

Part of Holochain Week Pittsburgh

Learn more about the week's events, including a seminar on collective intelligence and a panel discussion on the future of wealth and money here.

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Carnegie Mellon University

5000 Forbes Avenue

Pittsburgh, PA 15213

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