Trust in: Humans Weeks 1 + 2 of the Bits + Blocks Lab

Last week, while exploring identity and trust, one Bits + Blocks team headed for the Boston Registry of Motor Vehicles. The weather was cold and rainy, and the team went at noon, when they figured the RMV would be slammed. As team member Shuya Gong put it:

“What better way to understand issues around identity than to get your own identity proven and verified by the State of Massachusetts?”


Bytes for bites.

The Bits + Blocks Lab is an pop-up incubator hosted by the Harvard Innovation Lab, and created by IDEO Futures to explore the future of trust, and transaction and participation. Below is my personal story of our first interactions with Bitcoin.

Bitcoin. Global buzzword, media bully.

Personally, this was all I knew before starting the Bits + Blocks Lab. And all of a sudden, the only thing standing between us and dinner, was an unfolded origami paper with a QR code printed on it.


I promise we’re going to tip you more, we’re just out of Bitcoin.

Dinner as a social construct has become pretty normalized in our society. The system is pretty standard; come in, sit, order, eat, pay, tip, leave. Questions that don’t normally surface are “what if the price of my currency fluctuates so much that I don’t have enough by the end of it”, “what if they don’t accept this kind of currency here”, and the dark and looming “wait what if this just doesn’t work”?


i-lab VIP Team Profile: Spruce & Co

Take a moment and think about all of the places your phone has been with you today. When you woke up this morning, you may have had your device beside you in bed, brought it into the bathroom, kept it by your side at the gym and had it out with you as you were eating. Now, think about the last time you cleaned your phone? Well, the gross reality is we touch our mobile devices, on average, over 150 times each day and the average phone is 18x dirtier than a toilet seat!

Starting Spruce & Co


AdmitHub Unlocks College Admissions

AdmitHub is the first provider of massively open online college counseling (that's MOOCC with 2 Cs). Kirk Daulerio, a co-founder, is a former ivy league admissions officer and first gen college student. Drew Magliozzi, the other co-founder, is a career ed tech entrepreneur with a passion for disruptive innovation.



PolityPro - Making Every Election Matter!

PolityPro Inc. is a modern innovation of an ancient idea. As Aristotle once said, “If liberty and equality, as is thought by some are chiefly to be found in democracy, they will be best attained when all persons alike share in the government to the utmost.” PolityPro entered Harvard’s Innovation Lab during the fall of 2014, and over the course of J-term, the company has actively recruited its first cohort of candidates to join! Ultimately, PolityPro hopes to become the most robust civic tech company for local politics.


LifeGuides Helps Users Find and Get the Right Job, Provides Companies with a New Way to Recruit

LifeGuides provides young professionals with free career guides authored by mentors who have been there, done that.  The team was a resident at the i-lab last year, and has since moved across the street to become one of the first teams in the brand new Launch Lab.

The idea


Diagnostic company, Aldatu Biosciences, wins Deans’ Health and Sciences Challenge

In this year’s Deans’ Health and Life Sciences Challenge, Aldatu Biosciences, a venture created by Harvard students and researchers took home the Bertarelli Foundation Grand Prize and $40,000 in award money. 

Sponsored by deans from across the university and hosted at the Harvard innovation lab (i-lab), the challenge called for undergraduates, graduate students and postdoctoral and clinical fellows from across Harvard’s Schools to identify technologies that can be realized as implementable solutions to transform quality of care and life for populations around the world.


Making Their Mark: Winning Teams in the Dean’s Cultural Entrepreneurship Challenge Display a Diversity of Cultural Solutions to Pressing Social Needs

On Thursday, May 14, the Harvard Innovation Lab celebrated the accomplishments of six finalist teams and crowned winners of the Deans’ Cultural Entrepreneurship Challenge.  Now in its second year, the Challenge calls upon students to utilize the platform of entrepreneurship to help sustain the longevity of the arts and expand their impact on society.


i-lab Resource Spotlight: Expert-in-Residence Program

Roy Ash once said, “An entrepreneur tends to bite off a little more than he can chew hoping he’ll quickly learn how to chew it.”

With the variety of roles an entrepreneur is expected to play within a team—operations, marketing, developer, salesperson—there’s no way to always know what you’re doing. If your figurative entrepreneurial cheeks are more stretched than a hungry hamster’s, the i-lab’s Expert-in-Residence program is an invaluable resource to tap. 


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