Interview with Alejandro Elustondo and Daniel De Michele from XDK2MAM

Some months ago I found about XDK2MAM and did some review of the project. As Founder of IOTA Latino, I was interested on what this project could enable in Venezuela and the Caribbean, where we are working hard to adopt Tangle and designing some proofs of work as we study the IOTA protocol in depth.

So I contacted Daniel De Michele and Alejandro Elustondo, from Argentina to start discussing how we could work together in the region and ended up inviting them to our next IOTA Latino Meetup in December.

This interview, the first one I am doing for IOTA Hispano, aims to get a better understanding of what this project is about and why I believe it will be important for IOTA as it will allow others to prototype IoT.
Let’s get to know the founders and their vision.

Saul Ameliach
IOTA Latino Founder

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Tell us a bit about your backgrounds and how you ended up being interested by DLTs.

Daniel: I am a self taught Fullstack Web Developer, Head of WebDev Area in the Universidad Nacional de Entre Ríos and Linux Sysop with focus in HA and webservers. I also hold a Bachelor’s degree in Labour Relations. I have been curious about technology since I got my first computer at home (i386, 1993 maybe). Started doing my first webpages in 1999 using Frontpage and soon I moved on to CGI and later PHP and Python over LAMPP stack. By this days I am transitioning to Node.js as I understand it fits better my projects needs. By 2012 I entered to the Darkweb via Tor Browser and found the Hidden Wiki. That was the start of my journey through a lot of webs that used Bitcoin as anonymous payment system. Unfortunately, it bought my first Bitcoins in 2013, when they were something like 90USD and got interested by this new online payment method immediately. Did some reading, forked a Litecoin version to create my own altcoin with educational purposes and, since then, I am convinced about the impact DLTs will have in the future.

Alejandro: My interest in technology started when I was a kid. When I was 12 (2005) my older brother bought the book of B.W. Kernighan & D.M. Ritchie called ‘The C programming language’, which I began to read. As I finished every chapter my interest in the world of programming got bigger and bigger. The following year I entered a technical secondary school specialized in computing and I got my Computers Technician title. I remember that in 2015 I was studying Computer Security (a subject) and in one of the classes they tried to explain the operation of Bitcoin. Because of this, I started researching about blockchain until one day I found IOTA.
I am currently finishing my Systems Engineer degree at Universidad Tecnológica Nacional (UTN) and work as a software developer for C & S Informática which is an Argentine Software Engineering company.

What were your initial thoughts when you first heard about IOTA and the Tangle?

Daniel: I still remember the day IOTA got listed in Finex and came up in the Coinmarketcap top 10. I headed to their website to found that this guys were aiming to be the backbone of IoT. Knowing the scalability limitations blockchain has as data structure first thing I thought was “yeah, right …” Then I read a bit more, ended up trying to grasp Popov’s whitepaper and concluded that, if this was possible the potential could be huge …

Alejandro: The first time I heard about IOTA was due to a practical job that I had to deliver at the University. The only premise of the work was that it should be traceable with the possibility of replacing the fiat money, so I started researching and looking for alternatives to blockchain and I came across the IOTA whitepaper, written by Dr. Popov. After running into the whitepaper I was totally fascinated, so I proposed myself to explain it because at that time (September 2017) there was no documentation in Spanish regarding IOTA and its operation. It was just at that moment in where I met Carpincho (Daniel) who was just starting Iota Hispano and offered him my work so that it could be available to the Hispanic community.

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