When Bitcoin was launched in 2009, Dr. Gavin James Wood, the co-founder of Bitcoin’s biggest rival Ethereum, was knee-deep in the computer visualization of music and wholly uninterested in the hype around cryptocurrency. By the end of 2013, the British programmer had 15 years of open-source coding experience (and had been coding for 25 years of his 33), and came across Jonny Bitcoin and Vitalik Buterin. Jonny hoped Wood’s coding experience would help Buterin transform Ethereum from a white paper to a fully functional blockchain. His hope bore fruit and within weeks Wood joined Buterin in Miami to write the PoC-1 of Ethereum and present it in the North American Bitcoin Conference in January 2014.
Six months after the conference, the founders met in Zug, Switzerland to officially found Ethereum. During that time, Dr. Wood was busy ideating and putting down the groundwork of the smart contract language Solidity, writing down the first formal specification of any blockchain protocol, the Yellow Paper, and shaping other similar blockchain-based infrastructures.
Two years into his role as chief technology officer of Ethereum, Dr. Wood and Ethereum alumna Dr. Jutta Steiner founded Parity Technologies to develop core blockchain infrastructure for Ethereum and other Web 3.0 networks. Wood’s vision far surpassed average cryptocurrencies and relied on blockchain infrastructure to decentralize the web, precipitating a new wave of technological evolution. So naturally, someone who had a penchant for designing his own complicated board games in his youth jumped at the chance to disrupt the current centralized node-based software application status quo by launching Parity Technologies and Web3 Foundation.