“Take Nothing for Granted. Risk is Subjective,” Economist Mario Alves | Hacker Noon


The Tech Industry’s Greenest Awards. Public Nominations Are Open. Voting Starts Aug 13.

In the last couples years, Mario Ribeiro Alves created Portugal’s Blockchain Center, founded TAIKAI, AND got nominated for a 2020 Noonie for considered contributions to the INNOVATION category here at Hacker Noon.

With thanks to our 2020 Noonies partnersSustany Capital.TECH DomainsGrant for the WebSkillsoftFlipside CryptoUdacity, and Beyondskills.

1. Which 2020 Noonie/s have you been nominated for?

Hacker Noon Contributor of the Year – INNOVATION

2. Tell us a bit about yourself.

Economist by trade, technologist by heart. Worked at PwC and as Investment Banker. Helped startups fundraise and blockchain companies to design token incentive models.

In 2017 created Blockchain Center Portugal, a Portuguese blockchain community and in 2018 founded TAIKAI, with the vision to change the way companies build products crowdsourcing highly skilled teams and individuals.

3. Tell us about the things you make / write / manage / build.

EllisX is the first B2B platform that matches startups with media and event organizers based on mutual interest.

We help early-stage companies connect with people who want to tell their stories, while helping talented people build targeted and meaningful relationships with one another.

4. What are you most excited about right now?

A topic I’ve been exploring for quite some time: tokenization and how it can create the right incentives for people, in a fair and decentralized way.

Since I created TAIKAI: how the virtual hackathon model is changing the way companies and other organizations innovate and how teams can interact.


5. What are you worried about right now?

How technology is being used to create more and more products that make humanity more isolated and distanced from reality, making human interaction less frequent.

Technology should bring people closer and humankind even more knowledgeable, not less.

6. What’s the most useful advice you’ve ever given somebody?

Take nothing for granted. Risk is completely subjective. You can work at a big company from 9 to 5 and still fail. It is by doing things with passion that is going to lead you into a happy and impactful life.

7. How has the pandemic changed your life and/or career?

The pandemic is a black swan event that affects the whole world. Instead of focusing on the downside of things, I’ve focused on the upside. Personally, it has led to spending more time with my family, working remotely and enjoying more the small things life has to offer.

Career-wise, I had to accelerate the digitalization process of our product. For a long time, I’ve been advocating that online hackathons are the future and now it is the present. I’ve just been trying to take every opportunity to make organizations see that this is a time to innovate, not to stand down and wait for this whole situation to blow.

8. If we gave you $10 million to invest in one thing right now, where would you put it?

Financially speaking, I’d invest all in Bitcoin. Now more than ever, it is one of the few assets I trust. However, I could also do great things if I could invest that money into TAIKAI.

9. What’s an opinion you have that most people don’t agree with?

Success is subjective and is not necessarily correlated with being rich. Managing your time successfully is far more powerful than having monetary wealth because it allows you to spend more time doing the things you truly care about.

10. Which apps can’t you live without?

Slack, Twitter and WhatsApp.

11. What are you currently learning?

New ways of how token incentives might be used for gamification.

With gratitude to Hacker Noon’s 

2020 Noonies Partners: Sustany Capital.TECH DomainsGrant for the WebSkillsoftFlipside CryptoUdacity, and Beyondskills.


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