Frontrunning Bancor — DevCon3 (Ethereum Developers Conference) by Haseeb Quereshi
Guest Haseeb Qureshi: Poker Life Podcast
Haseeb Qureshi On Overcoming Challenges & Becoming A Top Class Developer
At the age of 16, Haseeb Qureshi began playing poker with $50 and won over $250,000 by age of 17 using game theory, risk management, behavioral economics, and data mining. He played under the stage name INTERNETPOKERS. In 2009, at the age of 19, he was ranked one of the 10 strongest online heads-up no-limit Hold'em players in the world, and netted over $1,000,000 in a year. Qureshi was sponsored by Full Tilt Poker from 2009-2011. Qureshi also privately coached many of the strongest poker players around the world, charging fees up to $1100 per hour. In August 2011, one of Qureshi's closest friends and fellow professional poker player, José Macedo, was caught stealing from friends. Qureshi tried to hide the scandal and give Macdeo a chance to pay the victims back, however the fraud ended up going public. The resulting scandal destroyed Qureshi's reputation and caused him to lose all of his sponsors.
In the year that followed, Qureshi searched desperately for what to do with himself.
He lived and worked on a farm, took a ten-day vow of silence, trained myself in meditation, taught English to refugees, went back to university finish his university degree and started writing a book.
In December 2013, he published his first book, How to Be a Poker Player: The Philosophy of Poker.
The book was a culmination of everything he learned in my career and became the #1 Amazon best-seller for poker for almost half a year. After finishing the book, Qureshi vowed to never play professional poker again and donated all of his winnings giving $75,000 in cash to charity and $500,000 worth of assets to his parents. In 2014, Qureshi began reading about the effective altruism movement and the concept of earning to give. He was inspired by organizations and researchers like 80,000 Hours and William MacAskill to go into technology entrepreneurship.
In 2015, Qureshi intensively studied programming for two weeks and applied to App Academy a leading 12-week programming boot camp in San Francisco with a 5% acceptance rate. In April 2015, he was accepted into the program and moved to San Francisco. After graduating, Qureshi worked for App Academy as an instructor. After three months, Qureshi was promoted and became the company's Director of Product. In this role, he managed the company's engineering team, developed partnerships with University of California, Berkeley and Udacity. He also created a new course, "a/A Jump Start", which generated over 400,000 in additional revenue for App Academy via student acquisition. 
In 2016, Qureshi decided that he wanted to leave App Academy and join the tech industry as a software engineer. With his unconventional background, Qureshi had a challenging job search, and ended up being rejected from over 40 companies before he ever got an interview. However, Qureshi kept going and eventually landing offers from top tech companies including Google, Airbnb, and Uber. He wrote a blog post about what happened, which went viral, being featured on Business Insider, BuzzFeed, and Yahoo! News.
Qureshi ended up accepting an offer from Airbnb, joining their anti-fraud team where he worked on mitigating payments fraud.
He learned a lot about security, distributed systems, and machine learning in adversarial environments. Qureshi found the work fascinating, learning about the payments space, and getting a deep understanding of the traditional financial system. The anti-fraud work gave Qureshi an understanding of the weakness of the traditional financial system and got him interested in cryptocurrency. In June 2017, Qureshi decided to go into the blockchain space full time and left Airbnb. He then worked on security research, consulted to a company called 21 (now Earn.com), did a lot of writing and speaking, and taught a course on cryptocurrencies at the Bradfield School of Computer Science.
In October 2017, Qureshi began to contribute to Hacker Noon and writes about blockchain and cryptocurrency. His most popular articles include "We already know blockchain's killer apps" and "Stablecoins: designing a price-stable cryptocurrency". In May 2018, he began working at MetaStable Capital as a General Partner, investing in promising blockchain and cryptocurrency projects.
Qureshi began getting involved in philanthropy in 2013 after leaving the world of poker and donating his winning. In 2014, he became a believer in the concept of effective altruism and earning to give. In August 2017, Qureshi became a member of the Founders Pledge, and publicly committed to donating 33% of his income to charity. Qureshi has also volunteered with organizations including RailsBridge, The Last Mile, National Safe Place, Interfaith Action of Central Texas, and.impact.