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Interviews

Interview with Enrique Alcazar Co-Founder and Blockchain Architect at NutraSign

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I had the pleasure of interviewing Enrique Alcazar, he is Cofounder & Blockchain architect in NutraSign

Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you share with us what NutraSign is?

Nutrasign is a new application that leverages distributed protocols, (IE, blockchain and IPFS) to fix some of the biggest problems food supply chain for both the user and seller:

The first one is focused around the user, and it’s food provenance, we all like to know where our food comes from, and some of us even make choices based on it, for example, you may like to buy from free-range farms. The problem is that, with the current food supply chain, that information can be easily faked, the good news is, thanks to nutrasign’s mobile app you’ll be able to scan every product you buy and see it’s full provenance.

The second one is related to every member in the chain. Currently many buyers have to trust each other on the product’s provenance, and in catastrophic events such as a product carrying a disease, it’s really hard to identify, we can barely determine the country, for example where a particular batch of peppers came from, forcing all farmers in the country to seize production, or mislabeling where they came from and expose more people to the disease. This exact example happened to Germany with some Spanish peppers which ended up not being Spanish.

Can you tell me How blockchain can improve food traceability?

Let’s say we have a supply chain with 3 participants: 2 is selling to 3, then 3 has to trust 2 with everything that happened before him, barely any information is kept right now and is not directly associated to the products.
One the only other solution would be for 2 to openly disclose all information about 1 and let 3 check that information, but that’s really time consuming and could be a horrible business decision, we propose a much better one:

Use blockchain and take advantage of its traceability and easy tokenization:
1. We create identities for all members, and every authorized participant, can create claims about them, IE: John’s farm is free range and has X license.
2. Every time a new product is created, we create a token representing it, every change made to the product is represented in the token, even morphing into new ones. IE: sugar tokens from John and lemon tokens from Ana were used by Alice to produce lemonade tokens.
3 We limit the information that we want to be accessible. IE: as a lemonade manufacturer, maybe I don’t

want the next buyer who my supplier’s are, then I can only register in that product the properties I want to expose instead of the full identity.

Will Blockchain bring trust back to the food industry?

I think it blockchain tech will bring new levels of trust to markets we are not expecting, and certainly, the food industry is one of them where we need it urgently, not only to fix all the scams that are happening right now,

but to improve our health, reduce risks, and give better visibility to all products that come from better sources.

How do you feel of being part of top 100 SouthSummit Startups finalist?

I’m ecstatic, it was a team effort, but certainty we have Abraham (Nutrasign’s CEO) to blame for this. Thanks to everyone, here we are, working on a great idea that aims to improve a part of the world for everyone, and at least for me, that’s the dream.
We are really thankful to the organization for seeing the potential of our product, and we will keep working on it to put it on everyone’s hands as soon as possible.

What are the 5 things that most excite you about blockchain and crypto? Why?

Only 5, that’s hard, I’ll go with the classics and give my own take.

  1. Scam prevention: I know this seems almost paradoxical nowadays with tons of ICOs being scams,

    but, if well used, thanks to the transparency it provides, it can clear up many processes, and you can

    be sure of who is executing them.

  2. No middle-man: For a very long time in most business we have the figure of the middle man, some

    entity that’s just putting 2 people in contact and takes a cut for it, it helps because it eases the trust, it’s easier to trust one person, but at the end of the day, that’s still one person hence a point of failure because of many reasons, one thing we can trust is code, and the more we perfect the behavior of blockchain code, the less middle man we’ll see.

  3. Global identities: wouldn’t it be nice if we owned our own identities instead of governments? Of course they and everyone could attestate things about it, but having an international identity could ease tons of things (private communication, access to resources, voting, identifying people in risk such as refugees).
  4. Decentralization of processes: From payments, to services like Uber, in some years, we’ll move to use Dapps, or at least I hope so, I think this could really help everyone, would reduce costs, give opportunities to people in risk of exclusion, delete inefficiencies… Basically just define a set of basic rules, and everyone that abides and has connection to a node can play, blockchain will make sure those rules are applied.
  5. The internet of value: This is the biggest one for me, and only enabled thanks to free micro payments: being paid for add consumption, paying to delete adds, pay tiny amounts to your favorite creators, being payed for the time you spend on your videogame… This basically means an internet where we stop being the product, instead we get rewarded for the value we contribute to the network.

What are the 5 things worry you about blockchain and crypto? Why?

Unfortunately, is also hard to list only 5
1. Lies on reach: Blockchain won’t cure cancer, and neither will solve other problems some of them are

claiming to fix, there are too many people spurting lies about almost everything, and obviously, users don’t have the time to check every detail that comes out, and that leads to misconceptions about how far this tech can go.

  1. Marketing: Tons of screaming with no substance, lots of projects just “put in a blockchain” for marketing purposes. Virtually 0 times is absolutely needed, rarely is used properly and most of the time is there just for show, that only gives it bad repo.
  2. Fake know-it-alls: I’m really not sure if they like to fake it, or it’s the Dunning-Krugger effect, but I’ve met tons of people that claim to be experts and then don’t even know the most basic stuff, everyone that claims to be an expert is either a liar or one of the “creators”, an even then that’s questionable and we can see it in the:
  3. Internal wars: This is a really young tech, and doesn’t have one single leader, this results in many discussions about where should blockchain go, and right now, they are doing more bad than good to the technology.
  4. Scams: Yes, right now there are too many scams, they tend to be consequence of adding all the points, some bad apples take advantage and create scams to trick people and steal their assets, fortunately right now, there are tons of people working on fixing this.

How can our readers follow you on social media?

I don’t tend to be very active on social media, but I can be found on most places by my internet’s nickname, kikoncuo.
At the end of the day, if you want to contact me or the project the easiest thing to do would be to try @Nutrasign in the main social networks (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn)

Anthony Delgado (born February 6, 1986) is an American software developer and internet entrepreneur widely known as a professional hacker in the developer community. Anthony Delgado has won numerous hackathons sponsored by Fortune 500 tech companies like Google, IBM, Intel, Facebook and Microsoft and hosted by organizations including Rutgers University, the New Jersey Institute of Technology, the AT&T Developer Summit in New York City.

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Interviews

How Marco Cabrera Created a 6 figure Real Estate Empire in Less Than a Year

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All his life, Marco Cabrera has been an entrepreneur at heart. Ever since he was a little boy, Marco Cabrera’s mind was business oriented. He learned from a tender age to take advantage of every presenting opportunity to make some money. At some point in his childhood, he made money from his mother’s friends by offering to paint their nails for $5. When 7-year-old Marco knew that her mom’s friends used to get paid on Fridays, he realized it would not be difficult to get $5 from each of them by doing their nails on Saturdays when they came over to their house.

 

To Marco’s parents, that might have just been their kid passing time while making a few bucks to buy candy with. To Marco, however, this was the beginning of a long journey into the corporate world. It was never going to be an easy journey, especially considering that business is full of risks and an uncertain future. There was much learning to do, and Marco was ready to go all in on the lessons life was going to teach him.

 

Believing in Himself and Learning From His Mistakes

 

True to his nature as a serial entrepreneur, Marco Cabrera worked hard to the extent of setting up 5 businesses. Like any other risk-taker out there, he knew there was a chance that a few or none of the businesses would grow into huge enterprises. Even so, he was not about to stop dreaming, and most importantly, taking action.

 

In his own words, Marco says, “Some of the companies did better than others, but what mattered most to me was taking action, believing in myself and learning from my mistakes.” One such mistake he made was backing down from his dreams. Instead of pushing through with his dream of becoming the entrepreneur he was born to be, he ended up being employed. Though he was still making a sizeable income from two of his best-performing businesses, he wanted something more for himself, his wife, and two kids.

 

From Stable to Uncomfortable

 

Marco Cabrera might have secured a ‘stable’ job six years ago, but to him, it was the same as having given up on the dream of greatness. He wanted a life higher and beyond the corporate cubicles, he had found himself in. Marco says, “I felt like I had thrown in the towel on my dreams, and was now settling. I knew something was not right.” The discomfort he felt being in the corporate cubicles then bred the determination to leave it all for something else. He realized it was not all about the money, but about fulfillment. Then came the tall and thick wall separating him from leaping onto his destiny – fear. Marco’s vision had been somewhat blurred by the confines of the corporate job that he was terrified about failing if he dared trying reaching for his dreams. Marco Cabrera, however, knew that something had to give, and it surely did.

 

Building a Fresh Relationship With God

Having lacked the strength in him to move forward, Marco looked to God for help. He started working on his relationship with God. That is how he found the confidence, faith and drive to get to where he had always wanted to be, where he was supposed to be. He confesses, “Through Jesus Christ, I have been able to get clarity and a new focus in my life, family, and business.” During his time growing in Christ, Marco attended a seminar where he met a distinguished real estate investor, who later became his mentor. Before long, Marco, through his mentor’s coaching, was able to finally create a six-figure real estate business. Marco Cabrera finally saw and lived the reality of his lifelong dream, and it all happened within a year.

 

Unlike many who give up on their visions, Marco Cabrera did not. He finally quit his corporate job to fully become a real estate investor. Today, he closes deals worth hundreds of thousands of dollars every month without prior experience of having ever been in the real estate industry. So, what is stopping you from pursuing your dreams? Are you stuck in some corporate cubicle feeling sorry about yourself? Don’t let life beat you down. Like Marco, you can find help in Jesus and finally see the realization of your dreams.  

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Entrepreneurship

5 Things Photographers Need to Know By Jaime Flores

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Jaime Flores is a photographer based in the Pacific Northwest (PNW). He is best known for his portraits but also does a variety of different types of photography. In just a span of a year, he grew his two instagram accounts to have 10x more followers than he had we started. Before photography, Jaime was going to college with no real idea of what he wanted to do for a career. After receiving his Associate’s degree with an emphasis in business, Jaime decided not to continue school and look for something new to pursue in life. He bought his first camera in April of 2018 and quickly gained the knowledge needed in order to be commercially successful in his hometown.

At first his focus was only portraits but later on he began doing product photography, events, landscapes and more. In May of 2019 he started his own Media company called Digital Trends Media. The company provides photography, videography, graphic design, and social media management services. Jaime hopes to inspire and help others find skills that are needed in today’s world driven by social media.

 

1. Carry your camera at all times

It’s actually really important to always have your camera with you. Pretty often, people get curious and will ask you: “Are you a photographer?” or “What kind of camera do you have?”. Use that as a chance to show them your work and/or hand them a business card (you should always have some). Take your camera everywhere you go and learn to take candid photos of people out in the city, take pictures of your food/drinks, take pictures of nature, etc. This seems pointless but people are willing to buy print versions of those types of photography. Expand your skillset beyond portraits.

 

2. Leverage your personality

Don’t rely solely on your work to catch the attention of potential clients. Your work will only get you so far but you have to be willing to put your personality out there as well. If you take a look at some of the most successful and well known photographers, you’ll notice that they not only take amazing pictures but they also have huge personalities. People love to see what the person behind the camera is like.

 

3. Make your photography stand out

Editing is crucial, spend lots of time learning new editing techniques. Also, when shooting portraits, take your time and really analyze backgrounds. Take pictures from numerous angles to give your pictures unique perspectives. Combine a unique editing style with new angles/ideas, and you will gain popularity.

 

4. Youtube is your best friend

A question I get asked all the time is: “How can I get better at taking pictures?” My answer is always Youtube and practice. Of course you can pay to attend seminars and pay for online photography courses, but to me that’s all unnecessary. All the information you need can be found on YouTube for FREE. At least that’s how I learned everything I know.

 

5. Cameras don’t do the work for you

A common misconception that people tend to have is that having a good camera is all it takes to be a good photographer. Nowadays an iPhone camera is the best camera to use as a beginner. Anyone can buy the most expensive camera but it takes knowledge about camera settings in order to take the best pictures, as well as good editing skills.

 

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Entrepreneurship

There are 4 Ways to have Fun All Summer Long

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Three Connecticut friends transformed a dream into a booming business. While watching sports one night, something sparked their creativity and they realized that there was a gap in the sports industry. After conducting additional research, they found that they truly had an original idea, so they came together and created the blueprint for their game, and within a year, a prototype was born! Now there is a new way to enjoy summer sports whether you’re on a beach, at a picnic, gym, or park. This four- way intersecting volleyball net has all the fun of a traditional volleyball game but with a unique twist and a brand-new set of game rules.  

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The real final four.

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The World’s First 4-Way Volley Ball Net

Chris Meade, the co-founder of CrossNet recounts the journey of creating the world’s first 4-way volleyball net when the idea was only in its infancy. “A prototype that was created and tested on a beach in the summer of 2018 gained lots of attention. It went from the four of us playing and having a good time to 25 people waiting in line and me not even getting to play my own game at the beach. As soon as that happen, we knew we had a great game.”

Success Doesn’t Happen Overnight

In most cases, success doesn’t happen overnight, and this was definitely the case for the Connecticut trio, they attribute their success to creating a clear set of game rules for their users, implementing strong branding techniques, and utilizing social media to build brand awareness and outreach. “We were three kids from a farming town in Connecticut. We had an idea and we were able to make it come to life, and now we’re being played in over 500 gym classes across the world. You can also find their products in some of the world’s top retail stores like Walmart, Target, Academy Sports and Outdoors, Amazon, and many more.

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The best place to meet your friends is at the net.

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New-Found Freedom

Meade enjoys the life that entrepreneurship has awarded him. Since the business has taken off, he’s able to reclaim his time, energy, and life back. When asked how has entrepreneurship improved his life, he had this to say: “I have more flexibility! “Nothing is worse than going to a job everyday and working for somebody to improve their business. Everyday I wake up and ‘think how do I improve my business?’ Which is a direct impact on my life and the life that I live.”

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Spike what? CROSSNET!

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Changing the Game of Outdoor Sports

Meade is proud of the success and attention that the CrossNet game has gained since it’s release in June 2017, he also mentions that the sports industry has plenty room for innovation, yet, despite the passing of time, the industry lacks fresh innovation, until now! “The outdoor game and sports market is a very boring industry, and I mean that in the sense that no innovative outdoor game products really came out to the market. Our parents and their friends have been playing corn hold, Frisbee, and basketball outside for the last 100 years. There’s only so many times [that a new outdoor game is developed] and becomes a game changer, and we’ve brought in a four-way volleyball net, four-square combined, and a new game of CrossNet.”

CrossNet Brings Value to Players

CrossNet is a unique game that brings value to anyone who is willing to take part in the sport. Families can enjoy this game at a picnic, or at the beach. Physical education instructors can use this game as a pre-workout tool or as a fun workout for students. Even professional athletes can find ways to enjoy this game. Its versatility and easy game rules makes this a suitable activity for anyone to enjoy. Meade says “Leisure players can now play volleyball in a one-on-one setting. Children and young adults who are looking to learn the basic skills of volleyball can now play with select friends. It’s also a great warm-up and skill and development tool as well.

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Sunset CROSSNET in Australia. (via @nbva.manly)

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Here’s to the Future!

Chris Meade is a young 26-year-old who has successfully traversed the world of business and entrepreneurship. Together, him and his friends were able to take an idea, and turn it into profit. As a piece of advice to young aspiring entrepreneurs, he says “Have a concrete idea and run it by your peers. Don’t give up! It’s been over two years in the making and we went from a company that celebrated one sale a day, to now making the news in Minnesota were sport anchors are taking our game out of the box and showing the entire state of Minnesota.”

For business inquiries and questions, Chris Meade can be reached at [email protected].

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The Disrupt Podcast tells the stories of the world top entrepreneurs, developers, creators, and digital marketers and help empower them to teach others the skills they used to grow their careers, chase their passions and create financial freedom for themselves, their families, and their lives, all while living out their true purpose. We recognize the fact that most young people are opting to skip college in exchange for entrepreneurship and real life experience. This Podcast is designed to give them a taste of that.

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