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New Lands, or New Eyes? | Monthly FIRE Portfolio Update - April 2020
The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes. - Marcel Proust, Remembrance of Things Past This is my forty-first portfolio update. I complete this update monthly to check my progress against my goal. Portfolio goal My objective is to reach a portfolio of $2 180 000 by 1 July 2021. This would produce a real annual income of about $87 000 (in 2020 dollars). This portfolio objective is based on an expected average real return of 3.99 per cent, or a nominal return of 6.49 per cent. Portfolio summary Vanguard Lifestrategy High Growth Fund – $697 582 Vanguard Lifestrategy Growth Fund – $40 709 Vanguard Lifestrategy Balanced Fund – $76 583 Vanguard Diversified Bonds Fund – $110 563 Vanguard Australian Shares ETF (VAS) – $174 864 Vanguard International Shares ETF (VGS) – $31 505 Betashares Australia 200 ETF (A200) – $215 805 Telstra shares (TLS) – $1 625 Insurance Australia Group shares (IAG) – $7 323 NIB Holdings shares (NHF) – $5 904 Gold ETF (GOLD.ASX) – $119 458 Secured physical gold – $19 269 Ratesetter (P2P lending) – $12 234 Bitcoin – $158 360 Raiz app (Aggressive portfolio) – $16 144 Spaceship Voyager app (Index portfolio) – $2 435 BrickX (P2P rental real estate) – $4 471 Total portfolio value: $1 694 834 (+$127 888 or 8.2%) Asset allocation Australian shares – 40.9% (4.1% under) Global shares – 21.7% Emerging markets shares – 2.2% International small companies – 3.0% Total international shares – 26.9% (3.1% under) Total shares – 67.8% (7.2% under) Total property securities – 0.3% (0.3% over) Australian bonds – 4.5% International bonds – 9.9% Total bonds – 14.4% (0.6% under) Gold – 8.2% Bitcoin – 9.3% Gold and alternatives – 17.5% (7.5% over) Presented visually, below is a high-level view of the current asset allocation of the portfolio. Comments This month featured a sharp recovery in the overall portfolio, reducing the size of the large losses experienced over the previous month. The portfolio increased by over $127 000, representing a growth of 8.2 per cent, which is the largest month-on-month growth on record. This now puts the portfolio value significantly above the levels of a year ago. [Chart] The expansion in the value of the portfolio has occurred due to an increase in Australian and global equities markets, as well as substantial increases the price of Bitcoin. This is effectively the mirror image of the simultaneous negative movements last month. From a nadir of initial pessimism in late March, markets have generally moved upwards as debate continues about the path of a likely economic recession and recovery from Coronavirus impacts over the coming year. [Chart] First quarter distributions from the Australian and Global Shares ETFs (A200, VAS and VGS) were received this month. These were too early to fully reflect the sharp economic activity impacts of the Coronavirus and lockdown period on company earnings. Despite this, they were significantly down on a cents per unit basis on the equivalent distributions last year. Totalling around $2700, these distributions formed part of new contributions to Vanguard's Australian shares ETF (VAS). The rapid falls in equity have many participants looking forward to a return to normalcy, or at least more open to the pleasing ideas that nerves have been held in a market fall comparable to 2000 or 2008-09, and that markets now represent clear value. As discussed last month, there should be caution and some humility about these questions, if some historical perspective is taken. As an example, the largest global equity market in the world - the United States - remains at valuation levels well above those experienced in previous market lows. Portfolio alternatives - tracking changes under the surface A striking feature of the past year or so has been the expansion of the non-traditional or 'alternatives' components of gold and Bitcoin as a proportion of the overall portfolio. Currently, when combined these alternative assets form a greater part of the portfolio than at any point over the past two years. The chart below shows that since January 2019 the gold and Bitcoin component of the portfolio has lifted from around its long term target level of 10 per cent, to now make up over 17 per cent of the portfolio. In the space of the last four months alone, it has lifted from 13 per cent. [Chart] With no purchases of either gold or Bitcoin over the period, the growth in the chart is the result of two reinforcing factors: A substantial fall in the value of the equity portfolio - reaching nearly $200 000 since the recent February market peak has naturally and mathematically led to a commensurate increase the proportion of other assets. Increases in the value of gold and Bitcoin - have also played a role with a total appreciation of around $150 000 across the two assets over the past 16 months. In fact, the value gold holdings alone have increased by over 40 per cent since January last year. Further appreciation of either gold or Bitcoin prices, particularly if any further falls in equity markets occur, could easily place the portfolio in the same position as experienced in January 2018. At that time these alternative assets made up 1 in every 5 dollars of the portfolio, an unusual, and in that case temporary phenomenon. This represents a different portfolio and risk exposure than that envisaged in my portfolio investment plan. Yet, equally it is critical to recall what the circumstances would likely be for this to arise. Simultaneously high gold and Bitcoin prices are more likely to occur in a situation of severe capital market dislocation, or falling confidence. On the other hand, should confidence and equity market growth be restored, both of these portfolio components could fall back to lower levels. It is difficult to tell which state of the world will eventuate, a key reason for diversification across asset types. United States government debt is already at record levels - equivalent in real terms to levels last seen when it emerged out of the Second World War - despite no similar national effort having being undertaken. Future inflation can potentially partly manage this burden, however, the last sustained episode of persistently high inflation rates during the decade of the 1970s spelt negative real returns. Where investors expect future inflation or financially 'repressive' policies of inflation exceeding interest rates, the economic growth required to 'grow out' of debt can be affected. At this point, my inclination is to address this circumstance gradually through time by re-balancing of distributions and new contributions, rather than to realise capital gains by selling assets at one, or several, points in time. Chasing down the lines - falling average spending in lockdown Since the implementation of lockdown restrictions, average credit card expenditure has fallen by nearly 30 per cent. This has taken credit card expenditure to lower than any similar period in the past six years. Partly as a result of this - as the chart below shows - a new development is occurring. The previously fairly steady card expenses line (red) is now starting to bend down towards, or 'chase', the rolling average distributions line (in blue). [Chart] The declining distributions line is a result of some previous high distributions gradually falling outside of the data 'window' for the rolling three-year comparison of distributions and expenditure. This intriguing picture will probably change before a cross-over occurs, as lockdown restrictions ease, and as the data feeding into the three year average slowly changes over time. Progress Progress against the objective, and the additional measures I have reached is set out below. Measure Portfolio All Assets Portfolio objective – $2 180 000 (or $87 000 pa) 77.7% 104.6% Credit card purchases – $71 000 pa 94.8% 127.6% Total expenses – $89 000 pa 76.0% 102.3% Summary Last month market volatility theoretically took progress down to below most of my financial independence benchmarks on an 'All Assets' (i.e. portfolio and superannuation assets) basis. This position has reversed this month. As markets have recovered and with additional spare time in the lockdown period, I have continued to seek out and think about different perspectives on the history and future of markets. Yet it must be recognised that there is a natural limit to the utility of these ponderings. The shape of the future is always uncertain, and in this world, confident comparisons and analogies with past events can be perilous. Comparisons with past periods of financial market crises miss the centrality of government action as a causal influence on the path of virus affected economies and markets. A virus and recovery is not the same as a global financial crisis originating in housing finance markets addressed through monetary and fiscal stimulus. Most developed country governments have quickly applied the same, if not larger versions of responses as applied in the global financial crisis, a distinguishing step that also makes analogies with the great depression era problematic. Similarly, a pandemic is not hitting and interacting with the shattered economic and health systems of the 1918-19 Spanish flu. Overlaying all of this is the imperfect and partially disconnected relationship between the economy today, and equity markets that discount and focus on the future. This makes all history's lessons more than usually caveated and conditional. One avenue for managing through these times is to focus on what does not change - the psychological difficulty of accepting alterations in financial circumstances and the capacity of markets movements to cruelly surprise us in both timing and direction. One of the best texts to read to get a sense of both of these in such times is Benjamin Roth's A Great Depression Diary. This tells of the day-by-day changes observed in everyday urban life and investment markets, from the point of view of an American small retail investor living through the times. This month also saw the exciting news that Pat the Shuffler and Strong Money Australia are combining efforts to produce a new podcast. Speaking of which, Big ERN's reflections on the current implications of sharemarket market movements for seekers of financial independence have been filled with insight and wisdom. This interesting piece (video) - the latest in a 'virus' market series - from New York University's Professor of Finance Aswath Damodaran on asset performances through the past few months - is a more technical and detailed discussion of how markets have re-priced businesses and profits. Finally, the recently released Hmmminar interview series provides a more heterodox set of speakers and ideas on current markets, presented by Grant Williams. Unlike predicting the future, seeking out different perspectives on it is perhaps the easiest it has ever been in history. While it is not always possible to change the course taken, it is possible to look at the same horizon with new eyes. The post, links and full charts can be seen here.
When discussing Bitcoin in general, many people believe it’s only for those anti-government libertarians who want to engage in illegal activities, but there’s simply no truth in that statement. Bitcoin is simply a money transfer system backed by a public ledger and quantifiable technology. Have you ever used a pre-paid card? A payday loan? Or a currency exchange booth? Chances are, you have, and if so—well Bitcoin has the potential to offer a cheaper version of all of these currency services if used to its full potential. Shawn Wilkinson, the founder of Storj (a cloud storage service) advocates its massive potential especially in online microloans. He thinks that cryptocurrency as a whole has a lot of power to change the way even the most impoverished communities use money, regardless of race.
Edwardo Jackson is perhaps one of the most notable black Bitcoin enthusiasts out there. In fact, he is so passionate about the currency, he currently runs a blog called Blacks in Bitcoin. Jackson is a Las Vegas resident and professional poker player, but found his love of Bitcoin while he was a writer for Upworthy in 2013. Jackson believes Bitcoin is still in the early adoption phase and thinks that now is most definitely the time for anyone who is thinking of getting into it to buy in. Currently, Jackson has developed his own blockchain based technology known as CD3D which is a decentralized app-based token which you can use in a game where instead of betting on sports, or the outcomes of elections, you vote on actors and actresses and win money based on their box office performance. This game is still under development and you can check the CinemaDraft websites for updates on when it may be opened for play. Jackson prides himself in his Bitcoin knowledge and wishes to educate everyone about it, so much so, he even hands out his personal phone number to anyone who asks so they can call him if they have questions.
You read that right, Richard Sherman, NFC Championship playing defensive back, is a Bitcoin fanatic! Sherman was born in Compton; California and it became clear early on he was destined to be a sports player. He achieved many high school records not only in football, but also as part of his school’s track team. Sherman received a scholarship to attend Stanford university where he played on their team from 2006-2010. In 2011, Sherman was signed by the Seattle Seahawks and played with the team for many years until 2018 when he signed a 39-million-dollar contract with the 49ers. He is very public about his love of cryptocurrency and his many investments in the technology field, so much so, he even takes Bitcoin for payment in his online store for all of his Seahawks and 49ers merchandise.
Reggie Middleton is an American entrepreneur and CEO of Vertiseum. Middleton’s claim to fame began in the early 2000’s as a financial writer for the Huffington Post. In 2011, he left his job there to start his own company and blog, Boom Bust Blog. He was an early adopter of Bitcoin, citing that its ability to be quickly, and largely, transferred making it one of the best methods of currency currently on the market. He also advocates how safe and cheap it is to transfer Bitcoin as opposed to using cash or the banking system, which has many caveats and difficulties as well as rising costs. Just think, to make a transfer from one bank to the other you either need to withdraw cash and physical drive it from one bank to another to avoid massive fees. If fees don’t scare you, you can wire the money, but this still takes gas, time, and often times there are limits on the amount you can transfer. Bitcoin solves all of these problems. Middleton loves crypto currencies so much, he founded Vertiseum, an Ultracoin technology. Although the legalities of his ICO are currently under scrutiny, Middleton still stands behind his advocacy of cryptocurrencies and posts many YouTube videos educating the public on the many uses of them in everyday life. https://preview.redd.it/awat63so54851.jpg?width=1200&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=0b99941873b4cc3d57b47c9c0ab908010c3c13ae
Black Influencers to Follow
Want to learn more about Bitcoin before you dive right in? Understandable! There are many influencers of color who know a lot about the cryptocurrency world! Check out Dr. Boyce Watkins, a financial scholar who offers numerous courses in cryptocurrency for beginners as well as an internet club for investors. He also runs Financial Juneteenth, a cryptocurrency group specifically for black investors and it is currently one of the largest cryptocurrency-based communities on the internet, so make sure you pay it a visit! Lamar Wilson is another notable influencer, widely known for building his own blockchain company Hijro, as well as a cryptocurrency wallet, back before it was even cool! He contributes abundantly to the Financial Juneteenth group listed above, as well as teaches a class about investing in cryptocurrencies on the Black Business School site. Also follow Ian Balina, a man famous for his unique approach to ICO’s thanks to his analytics background and former employment at IBM. He currently leads a global cryptocurrency investor syndicate, and posts content on YouTube, Twitter, and Instagram. Balina’s content is so revolutionary that he has been featured in numerous articles in many different magazines, most notably Forbes and Huffington Post. If after following all of these people you are still a little lost when it comes to cryptocurrency, don’t worry! It’s a confusing field at first. Just remember that cryptocurrency is for everyone and it make take time to learn about the ins and outs of the high-level technology. There are many websites which offer free guides you can take advantage of to help you find your way. So, subscribe to a few of them, investigate your questions, and you’ll be a cryptocurrency pro in no time!
My Attempt at an Analogy. Feedback would be greatly appreciated.
So, what even is Bitcoin? Bitcoin (shortened as BTC) is like a book. Transactions, the transfer of Bitcoin from one address to another are the lines in the book. Each page from the book can hold thousands of lines. Anyone can hold a copy of the book, and thousands of people do so already and are called nodes. Transactions do not become valid until a page with them is added to the book. How do you add pages, or blocks, to the book? Once a page gets filled with lines, a special number is generated that depends on the transactions and the special number from the last page through an algorithm. Every line in the new page is broadcasted to everyone who wants to contribute to the making of the book. Those people are called miners. In order to add a page to the book, you have to find the special number. When you find that special number, it is verified by the nodes. The only way to try and find this special number is to simply guess and then check. The algorithm also takes into account how fast the computers can find this special number and changes its difficulty so that a page is added about every 10 minutes. The lucky miner who finds the correct special number gets a reward in the form of Bitcoin. The chance of you adding to the book depends on how powerful your computer is. Basically, everyone is guessing numbers as fast as they can until someone gets lucky. The guessing and checking is done on some form of a computer, so this reward incentivizes the book contributors to keep mining by typically covering their electrical costs. After every chapter of the book is finished, the block reward, or the reward that comes from adding a page to the book, is halved. A new chapter is made every 210,000 pages, or about every four years. With the creation of bitcoin in 2008, this block reward used to be 50 BTC. Now, it is 6.25 BTC. These block rewards are the only way that new Bitcoin is put into circulation. When you perform a guess and check operation, you currently have a 1 in 15 trillion of a chance to guess correctly. It’s no longer profitable for everyday people like you and me to mine Bitcoin. Don’t worry. There are still plenty of other currencies to mine such as Ethereum or Ravencoin. Cryptocurrencies offer several advantages over conventional money. First, they diversify your portfolio. Governments tend to just print money when it is needed, often neglecting the risks of doing so and greatly impacting the economy. In Venezuela, CNBC reported that the overall inflation rate has recently reached over 10 million percent. We tend to think that our governments are stable, which is why we trust the dollar. But what happens if the government suddenly collapses, or loses its grip on reality? All those dollars would be completely useless. This is where the promise of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin come in. By their very nature, they are decentralized which makes them immune to government manipulation. Second, Bitcoin has a finite supply; you can’t just make more Bitcoins when it reaches 21 million bitcoins because of halving the block reward. Third, the blockchain, or the book, is always available to the public. This makes Bitcoin an anonymous yet transparent network in the sense that anyone can see the transactions, but cannot actually link the addresses to anyone’s identity. Thousands of nodes have a copy of the book, and since new nodes depend on previous nodes, it is resistant to hacking. Another pro, or a con, depending on who you ask, is that Bitcoins can have any price, but no real value, since they aren’t backed by any physical asset. They are extremely volatile. A problem with Bitcoin is that it is slow at handling transactions, about 7 transactions/sec compared to a maximum of 24,000 for VISA. Another problem with Bitcoin is that it uses a lot of power, we’re talking as much as the eBay, Facebook, and Google servers combined. Since Bitcoin was the first cryptocurrency, newer ones address these problems. Cryptocurrencies can bring more transparency and accountability to the world. That is, if they are designed well. The founder of bitcoin, Satoshi Nakamoto once said, “If you don’t believe it or don’t get it, I don’t have the time to try to convince you, sorry.”
https://preview.redd.it/m24fdyf48f151.jpg?width=1280&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=5b6d4b2cff422116b29ccf07273c66f3d4629434 At these present times, everything and everyone is adapting to modern technology. From devices, diagnostic equipment, transportation, communication, research, and now to financial transactions — the convenience that the technology has brought us is indeed immeasurable. We’ve written this article with the intention of letting people realize the importance of adapting to modern technology to alleviate the current financial system, not just in the cryptocurrency field. The term “Fintech” or financial technology has been gaining more attention, and we believe that it is very important to discuss the need to educate the public on what this really means before we dive into more technical details. By understanding what fintech means, we hope that more people will realize its importance and adopt it in their everyday lives. What is Financial Technology? Fintech, a term coined for Financial Technology, is used to define the industries behind the expansion of the financial technology system across the globe. Whether in banking, insurance, mobile payments, and cryptocurrency, the term is widely used to describe the rapidly growing financial system. A lot of fintech businesses or products are created in such a way that they will connect and simplify financial transactions through the use of modern technology. There is an increase in financial access, and freedom thanks to fintech. It has helped the world change the financial system in numerous ways. Before discovering the possibility of mobile or online banking, people used to line-up in banks just to open an account. Also, e-commerce flourished thanks to fintech. The availability of mobile apps and the internet catering to various services helped not just the consumers but also the businesses to expand their options and business goals. Fintech and Cryptocurrency Fintech upgraded the traditional financial transactions. Long gone are the days when people have to keep their money physically or have to visit banks to make transactions. Everything is almost digital. Everything is also almost convenient. In this age where everything is fast-paced, people always look for “convenience” and “efficiency” in a product and service. This is where cryptocurrency has the most advantage. The technology that cryptocurrency introduced through Bitcoin showed a profound effect on the Fintech industry. Thanks to the launch of Bitcoin in 2008, it was realized that a decentralized blockchain system is possible, and it can help solve the difficulties people encounter in the traditional financial system. As a form of digital or virtual money that runs in a blockchain, cryptocurrencies help users to manage their own money easily, quickly and securely. Users can make a transaction without the need for any central authority involved. People just need to have a cryptocurrency wallet where they can make crypto transactions. The Importance of Fintech Literacy The fintech industry has made a drastic growth in the financial sector over the years. As the world keeps on innovating, people will continuously adapt to changes. The more convenience fintech brings, the more people are inclined to use it. This is why Swipe believes that it is very important for users to understand how to have the right financial behavior in this high-tech world. People find it easier to store, but at the same time, they also spend money easily with the use of the internet or mobile applications. However, products and services that can easily be bought online make it easier for consumers to develop a habit of impulsive buying. People need to realize that even though fintech helps brings more convenience, the need to control and manage their transactions is extremely important. As a multi-asset digital wallet, Swipe believes that understanding the ropes of fintech and also cryptocurrencies will lead to better asset management and spending. Having a good grasp of fintech literacy helps the users’ ability to make informed decisions about their financial behaviors. Cryptocurrency rates are very volatile. Though it can be easily bought and spend any time, a crypto user must be knowledgeable enough on when or how to invest or spend his assets. Fintech will surely dominate the financial sector in the years to come. A user needs to have an open mind to adapt to these changes and learn how to use it properly. Having adequate fintech literacy will surely help a user to have the right attitude and behavior in making financial decisions in a world that is slowly becoming more digital. --- This blog article is also posted at:https://sw.pe/blogfintechliteracy
IoT is a whole ecosystem that contains intelligent devices equipped with sensors (sensors) that provide remote control, storage, transmission and security of data. The Internet of Things (IoT) is an innovative solution in various areas such as healthcare, insurance, labor protection, logistics, ecology, etc. To unleash the full potential of using IoT devices, it is necessary to solve many problems related to standards, security, architecture, ecosystem construction, channels and device connection protocols. Today in the world, large organizations such as NIST, IEEE, ISO / IEC, and others make enormous efforts in addressing the issues of standardization, security, and the architecture of developed devices. Analysis of recent scientific research in the field of solving information security issues and data privacy of IoT devices showed positive results, but these methods and approaches are based on traditional methods of network security. The development and application of security mechanisms for IoT devices is a complex and heterogeneous task. In this regard, ensuring information security and the protection of sensitive data, as well as the availability of IoT devices, is the main purpose of writing this article. Given the above, many questions arise related to the security status of IoT devices, namely: What are the current standards and protocols for IoT? What are the requirements for ensuring information security of IoT devices? What security mechanisms do IoT devices have? What methods of testing IoT devices exist? Manufacturers and developers of IoT devices do not pay enough attention to security issues. With the development of cyber-attacks, attack vectors are becoming more sophisticated and aimed at several infrastructure elements at the same time. IoT infrastructure typically includes millions of connected objects and devices that store and share confidential information. Scenarios of theft and fraud, such as hacking and falsifying personal data, pose a serious threat to such IoT devices. Most IoT devices use the public Internet to exchange data, which makes them vulnerable to cyber-attacks. Modern approaches to information security often offer solutions to individual problems, when multi-level approaches offer increased resistance to cyber-attacks. Challenges of testing IoT devices To a request to name essential items, many would answer: food, a roof over your head, clothes … With one caveat: this was the case in the last century. Since then, the species Homo Sapiens has accumulated needs. We need automatic sensors to control the lighting, not just switches, for smart systems to monitor health and car traffic. The list goes on … In general, we can make life easier and better. Let’s try to figure out how all this Internet of things works before moving on to testing. IoT testing Content What is the Internet of Things (IoT)? Examples of IoT devices # 1) Wearable technology: # 2) Infrastructure and development # 3) Health Technologies that are present in IoT IoT Testing # 1) Usability: # 2) IoT Security: # 3) Network features: # 4) Efficiency: # 5) Compatibility testing: # 6) Pilot testing: # 7) Check for compliance: # 8) Testing updates: IoT testing challenges # 1) Hard / soft # 2) Device Interaction Model # 3) Testing data coming in real time # 4) UI # 5) Network Availability IoT Testing Tools # 1) Software: # 2) Hard: Total What is the Internet of Things (IoT)? The Internet of things (or IoT) is a network that combines many objects: vehicles, home automation, medical equipment, microchips, etc. All these constituent elements accumulate and transmit data. Through this technology, the user controls the devices remotely.
Examples of IoT devices
# 1) Wearable technology: Fitbit Fitness Bracelets and Apple Watch smart watches sync seamlessly with other mobile devices.
IoT – watches and bracelets
Itís easier to collect health information: heart rate, body activity during sleep, etc. # 2) Infrastructure and development The CitySense app analyzes lighting data online and turns lights on and off automatically. There are applications that control traffic lights or report on the availability of parking lots. # 3) Health Some health monitoring systems are used in hospitals. The basis of their work is indicative data. These services control the dosage of drugs at different times of the day. For example, the UroSense application monitors the level of fluid in the body and, if necessary, increases this level. And doctors will learn about patient information wirelessly. Technologies that are present in IoT RFID (Radio Frequency Identification), EPC (Electronic Product Code) NFC (ìNear Field Communicationî) provides two-way communication between devices. This technology is present in smartphones and is used for contactless transactions. Bluetooth It is widely used in situations where near-field communication is sufficient. Most often present in wearable devices. Z-Wave. Low frequency RF technology. Most often used for home automation, lighting control, etc. WiFi. The most popular network for IoT (file, data and message transfer). IoT Testing Consider an example : a medical system that monitors health status, heart rate, fluid content, and sends reports to healthcare providers. Data is displayed in the system; archives available. And doctors are already deciding whether to take medication for the patient remotely. IoT architecture There are several approaches for testing the IoT architecture. # 1) Usability: It is necessary to provide usability testing of each device. A medical device that monitors your health should be portable. Sufficiently thought out equipment is needed that would send not only notifications, but also error messages, warnings, etc. The system must have an option that captures events, so that the end user understands. If this is not possible, event information is stored in the database. The ability to process data and exchange tasks between devices is carefully checked. # 2) IoT Security: Data is at the heart of all connected devices. Therefore, unauthorized access during data transfer is not ruled out. From the point of view of software testing, it is necessary to check how secure / encrypted the data is. If there is a UI, you need to check if it is password protected. # 3) Network features: Network connectivity and IoT functionality are critical. After all, we are talking about a system that is used for health purposes. Two main aspects are tested: The presence of a network , the possibility of data transfer (whether jobs are transferred from one device to another without any hitch). The scenario when there is no connection . Regardless of the level of reliability of the system, it is likely that the status of the system will be ìofflineî. If the network is unavailable, employees of the hospital or other organization need to know about it (notifications). Thus, they will be able to monitor the condition of the patient themselves, and not wait for the system to work. On the other hand, in such systems there is usually a mechanism that saves data if the system is offline. That is, data loss is eliminated. # 4) Efficiency: It is necessary to take into account the extent to which the healthcare solution is applicable in specific conditions. In testing, from 2 to 10 patients participate, data is transmitted to 10-20 devices. If the entire hospital is connected to the network, this is already 180-200 patients. That is, there will be more actual data than test data. In addition, it is necessary to test the utility for monitoring the system: current load, power consumption, temperature, etc. # 5) Compatibility testing: This item is always present in the plan for testing the IoT system. The compatibility of different versions of operating systems, browser types and their respective versions, devices of different generations, communication modes [for example, Bluetooth 2.0, 3.0] is extremely important for IoT. # 6) Pilot testing: Pilot testing is a mandatory point of the test plan. Only tests in the laboratory will allow us to conclude that the system is functional. In pilot testing, the number of users is limited. They make manipulations with the application and express their opinion. These comments turn out to be very helpful, they make a reliable application. # 7) Check for compliance: The system, which monitors the state of health, undergoes many compliance checks. It also happens that a software product passes all stages of testing, but fails the final test for compliance [testing is carried out by the regulatory body]. It is more advisable to check for compliance with norms and standards before starting the development cycle. # 8) Testing updates: IoT is a combination of many protocols, devices, operating systems, firmware, hardware, network layers, etc. When an update occurs – be it a system or something else of the above – rigorous regression testing is required. The overall strategy is being amended to avoid the difficulties associated with the upgrade.
IoT testing challengesIoT testing
# 1) Hard / soft IoT is an architecture in which software and hardware components are closely intertwined. Not only software is important, but also hard: sensors, gateways, etc. Functional testing alone will not be enough to certify the system. All components are interdependent. IoT is much more complicated than simpler systems [only software or only hard]. # 2) Device Interaction Model Components of the network must interact in real time or close to real. All this becomes a single whole – hence the additional difficulties associated with IoT (security, backward compatibility and updates). # 3) Testing data coming in real time Obtaining this data is extremely difficult. The matter is complicated by the fact that the system, as in the described case, may relate to the health sector. # 4) UI An IoT network usually consists of different devices that are controlled by different platforms [iOS, Android, Windows, linux]. Testing is possible only on some devices, since testing on all possible devices is almost impossible. # 5) Network Availability Network connectivity plays an important role in IoT. The data rate is increasing. IoT architecture should be tested under various connection conditions, at different speeds. Virtual network emulators in most cases are used to diversify network load, connectivity, stability, and other elements of load testing . But the evidence is always new scenarios, and the testing team does not know where the difficulties will arise in the future.
IoT Testing ToolsIoT and software
There are many tools that are used in testing IoT systems. They are classified depending on the purpose: # 1) Software: Wireshark : An open source tool. Used to monitor traffic in the interface, source / given host address, etc. Tcpdump : This tool does a similar job. The utility does not have a GUI, its interface is the command line. It enables the user to flash TCP / IP and other packets that are transmitted over the network. # 2) Hard: JTAG Dongle: A tool similar to debuggers in PC applications. Allows you to find defects in the code of the target platform and shows the changes step by step. Digital Storage Oscilloscope : checks various events using time stamps, power outages, signal integrity. Software Defined Radio : emulates a transmitter and receiver for various wireless gateways. IoT is an emerging market and many opportunities. In the foreseeable future, the Internet of things will become one of the main areas of work for tester teams. Network devices, smart gadget applications, communication modules – all this plays an important role in the study and evaluation of various services. Total The approach to testing IoT may vary depending on the specific system / architecture. Itís difficult to test IoT, but at the same time itís an interesting job, since testers have a good place to swing – there are many devices, protocols and operating systems. PS You should try out the TAAS format (“tests from the user’s point of view”), and not just fulfill the formal requirements. ————— Smart watches, baby-sitters, wireless gadgets and devices such as, for example, a portable radio station have long been part of everyday life. Hackers have already proven that many of these attacks on IoT are possible. Many people in general first learned about IoT security threats when they heard about the Mirai botnet in September 2016. According to some estimates, Mirai infected about 2.5 million IoT devices, including printers, routers and cameras connected to the Internet. The botnetís creators used it to launch distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks, including an attack on the KrebsonSecurity cybersecurity blog. In fact, the attackers used all devices infected with Mirai to try to connect to the target site at the same time, in the hope of suppressing the servers and preventing access to the site. Since Mirai was first published on the news, attackers launched other botnet attacks on IoT, including Reaper and Hajime. Experts say that such attacks are most likely in the future. The Internet of Things (IoT) can bring many advantages to modern life, but it also has one huge drawback: security threats. In its 2018 IOT forecasts, Forroter Research notes: ìSecurity threats are a major concern for companies deploying IoT solutions – in fact, this is the main task of organizations looking to deploy IoT solutions. However, most firms do not regularly prevent IoT-specific security threats, and business pressure suppresses technical security issues. î IoT security risks can be even more significant on the consumer side, where people are often unaware of potential threats and what they should do to avoid threats. A 2017 IoT security survey sponsored by Gemalto Security Provider found that only 14 percent of consumers surveyed consider themselves IoT-aware. This number is particularly noteworthy because 54 percent of the respondents owned an average of four IoT devices. And these IoT security threats are not just theoretical. Hackers and cybercriminals have already found ways to compromise many IoT devices and networks, and experts say that successful attacks are likely to increase. Forrester predicted: “In 2018, we will see more attacks related to IoT … except that they will increase in scale and loss.” What types of IoT security threats will enterprises and consumers face in 2018? Based on historical precedent, here are ten of the most likely types of attacks.
Botnets and DDoS attacks
Remote recording The possibility that attackers can hack IoT devices and record owners without their knowledge is not revealed as a result of the work of hackers, but as a result of the work of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA).
Documents released by WikiLeaks implied that the spy agency knew about dozens of zero-day exploits for IoT devices, but did not disclose errors, because they hoped to use vulnerabilities to secretly record conversations that would reveal the actions of alleged opponents of America. Documents pointed to vulnerabilities in smart TVs, as well as on Android and iOS smartphones. The obvious consequence is that criminals can also exploit these vulnerabilities for their vile purposes.
Spam In January 2014, one of the first known attacks using IoT devices used more than 100,000 Internet-connected devices, including televisions, routers, and at least one smart refrigerator to send 300,000 spam emails per day.
The attackers sent no more than 10 messages from each device, which makes it very difficult to block or determine the location of the incident. This first attack was not far from the last. IoT spam attacks continued in the fall with the Linux.ProxyM IoT botnet.
APTs In recent years, advanced persistent threats (APTs) have become a serious concern for security professionals.
APTs are carried out by funded and widespread attackers such as nation states or corporations that launch complex cyberattacks that are difficult to prevent or mitigate. For example, the Stuxnet worm, which destroyed Iranian nuclear centrifuges and hacking Sony Pictures 2014, was attributed to nation states. Because the critical infrastructure is connected to the Internet, many experts warn that APTs may launch a power-oriented IoT attack, industrial control systems, or other systems connected to the Internet. Some even warn that terrorists could launch an attack on iOT, which could harm the global economy.
Ransomware Ransomware has become too common on home PCs and corporate networks. Now experts say that it is only a matter of time before the attackers begin to block smart devices. Security researchers have already demonstrated the ability to install ransomware on smart thermostats. For example, they can raise the temperature to 95 degrees and refuse to return it to its normal state until the owner agrees to pay a ransom in Bitcoins. They can also launch similar attacks on garage doors, vehicles, or even appliances. How much would you pay to unlock your smart coffee pot first thing in the morning?
Data theft Obtaining important data, such as customer names, credit card numbers, social security numbers, and other personal information, is still one of the main goals of cyber attacks.
IoT devices represent a whole new vector of attack for criminals looking for ways to invade corporate or home networks. For example, if an improperly configured device or IoT sensor is connected to corporate networks, this can give attackers a new way to enter the network and potentially find the valuable data that they need.
Home theft As smart locks and smart garage doors become more commonplace, it is also more likely that cybercriminals can become real thieves.
Home systems that are not properly protected can be vulnerable to criminals with sophisticated tools and software. Security researchers are unlikely to have shown that itís quite easy to break into a house through smart locks from several different manufacturers, and smart garage doors do not seem to be much safer.
Communication with children One of the most disturbing IoT security stories came from children.
One couple discovered that the stranger not only used his monitor for children to spy on their three-year-old son, this stranger also spoke with his child through the device. Mother heard an unknown voice: ìWake up, boy, dad is looking for you,î and the child said that he was scared because at night someone was talking to him on an electronic device. As more and more children’s gadgets and toys connect to the Internet, it seems likely that these frightening scenarios may become more common.
Remote control of a vehicle As vehicles become smarter and more accessible on the Internet, they also become vulnerable to attack.
Hackers have shown that they can take control of a jeep, maximize air conditioning, change the radio station, start the wipers, and ultimately slow down the car. The news led to the recall of 1.4 million cars, but whitehat researchers, following the original exploit, said they discovered additional vulnerabilities that were not fixed by the Chrysler patch applied to the recalled cars. Although experts say the automotive industry is doing a great job of ensuring vehicle safety, it is almost certain that attackers will find new vulnerabilities in such smart cars.
Personal attacks Sometimes IoT covers more than just devices – it can also include people who have connected medical devices implanted in their bodies.
An episode of the television series Homeland attempted a murder aimed at an implanted medical device, and former vice president Dick Cheney was so worried about this scenario that he turned off the wireless capabilities on his implanted defibrillator. This kind of attack has not yet happened in real life, but it remains possible, as many medical devices become part of the IoT.
Which type of curren(t) do you want to see(cy)? An analysis of the intention behind bitcoin(s). Part 3
Part 1 Part 2 So I have been subbed to /bitcoin since it had less than two thousand subs but haven't posted there in years. I think I took a break from researching bitcoin to take a foray into the world of conspiracy around 2014 and only got back in to it around the beginning of 2017 but with a bit of sense of skepticism and cynicism about everything. I think I returned to /bitcoin around that time but there had been a rift that had emerged in the community between those that said that bitcoin was censoring any discussion around big blocks but then also just censorship in general. This lead to the formation of /btc which became the main spot for big blockers to gather to talk about protocol development. Following the fork of Bitcoin Cash and SegWit (BTC) in August 2017 the camps were further divided when the fence sitters were denied their SegWit2x compromise. Many from the fence sitters then deferred back to the incumbent bitcoin as citing muh network effect, liquidity, and hashpower while some who felt betrayed by the failure of getting S2X through went to support BCH for some attempt at on chain scaling rather than through pegged side chains or Lightning Network. Bitcoin cash initially went with a modest doubling of the blocksize to 2MB but implemented some other features like a new more rapidly adjusting difficulty algorithm to protect themselves against hashpower fluctuations from the majority chain. In about July of that year I had seen what I potentially thought was someone LARPing on /biz/ but screencapped, that segwit2x which was scheduled for november 2017 would be called off and then hashpower would switch to BCH causing congestion and chain death spiral on BTC and BCH would pump massively. I was partial to the idea as the game theory and incentives on a big block bitcoin should attract miners. About a month after SegWit2x was indeed called off while the BTC blockchain was hugely congested, BCH went through a violent pump reaching 0.5 BTC/BCH on a European exchange called Kraken while it also pumped ridiculously on American exchange coinbase. Shortly afterwards the market took a giant dump all over those people who bought the top and it has since retraced to roughly 30:1 or so now. After that pump though BCH kind of gained some bagholders I guess who started to learn the talking points presented by personalities like Roger Ver, Jihan Wu, Peter Rizun and Amaury Sechet. Craig S Wright by this time had been outed as Satoshi but had in 2016 publicly failed to convince the public with the cryptographic proof he provided. To which he later published the article I don't have the courage to prove I am the bitcoin creator. In essence this allowed many to disregard anything he offered to the crypto community though his company nChain was very much interested in providing the technical support to scale what he saw as the true implementation of bitcoin. Following debate around a set of planned protocol upgrades between a bitcoin node implementation by his company nChain and the developers of another client Bitcoin ABC (adjustable block cap), the two parties both dug their heels in and wouldn't compromise. As it became clear that a fork was imminent there was a lot of vitriol tossed out towards Wright, another big billionaire backer Calvin Ayre and other personalities like Roger Ver and Jihan Wu. Craig's credibility was disregarded because of his failure to provide convincing cryptographic proof but still people who wanted to pursue the protocol upgrades that nChain were planning (as it best followed their interpretation of the bitcoin white paper) pursued his variant, while others who followed the socia consensus deferred to the positions of their personalities like Wu, Ver, and Sechet but even developers from Ethereum and other protocols chimed in to convince everyone that CSW is a fraud. This was referred to as the hash war and was the first time that the bitcoin protocol had been contentiously hard forked. Hashpower is the CPU cycles you can commit to the Proof of Work function in bitcoin and the majority will generate the longest chain as they have the most proof of work. To win the contentious hard fork legitimately and make sure your chain will always be safe going forward you need to maintain your version of the blockchain with 51% of the hashpower on the network and force the other parties to continue to spend money on building a blockchain that is never going to be inserted in to the majority chain. As well as this you need to convince exchanges that you have the majority chain and have them feel safe to accept deposits and withdrawals so that they don't lose money in the chaos. This is how it would play out if both parties acted according to the rules of bitcoin and the Nakamoto Consensus. There was a lot of shit talking between the two parties on social media with Craig Wright making a number of claims such as "you split, we bankrupt you" "I don't care if there is no ability to move coins to an exchange for a year" and other such warnings not to engage in foul play.. To explain this aftermath is quite tedious so It might be better to defer to this video for the in depth analysis but basically Roger Ver had to rent hashpower that was supposed to be mining BTC from his mining farm bitcoin.com, Jihan Wu did the same from his Bitmain Mining Farm which was a violation of his fiduciary duty as the CEO of a company preparing for an IPO. In this video of a livestream during the hashwar where Andreas Brekken admits to basically colluding with exchange owners like Coinbase, Kraken (exchange Roger Ver invested in), Bitfinex and others to release a patched ABC client to the exchanges and introducing "checkpoints" in to the BCH blockchain (which he even says is arguably "centralisation") in order to prevent deep reorgs of the BCH blockchain. >"We knew we were going to win in 30 mins we had the victory because of these checkpoints that we released to a cartel of friendly businesses in a patch so then we just sat around drinking beers all day". By releasing a patched client that has code in it to prevent deep reorgs by having the client refer to a checkpoint from a block mined by someone who supported BCHABC if another group of hash power was to try to insert a new chain history, this cartel of exchanges and mining farm operators conspired in private to change the nature of the bitcoin protocol and Nakamoto Consensus. Since the fork there have been a number of other BCH clients that have come up that require funding and have their own ideas about what things to implement on the BCH chain. What began to emerge was actually not necessarily an intention of scaling bitcoin but rather to implement Schnorr signatures to obfuscate transactions and to date the ABC client still has a default blocksize of 2MB but advertised as 16MB. What this demonstrates for BCH is that through the collusion, the cartel can immediately get a favourable outcome from the developers to keep their businesses secure and from the personalities/developers to work on obfuscating records of transactions on the chain rather than scaling their protocol. After the SegWit fork, many from the BCH camp alleged that through the funding to Blockstream from AXA and groups that tied to the Bilderbergs, Blockstream would be beholden to the legacy banking and would be a spoke and hub centralised model, so naturally many of the "down with central banks anarcho capitalist types" had gathered in the BCH community. Through these sympathies it seems that people have been susceptible to being sold things like coin mixing and obfuscation with developers offering their opinions about how money needs to be anonymous to stop the evil government and central banks despite ideas like Mises’ Regression Theorem, which claims that in order for something to be money in the most proper sense, it must be traceable to an originally non-monetary barter commodity such as gold. What this suggests is that there is an underlying intent from the people that have mechanisms to exert their will upon the protocol of bitcoin and that if obfuscation is their first priority rather than working on creating a scalable platform, this demonstrates that they don't wish to actually be global money but more so something that makes it easier to move money that you don't want seen. Roger Ver has often expressed sentiments of injustice about the treatment of Silk Road found Ross Ulbricht and donated a large amount of money to a fund for his defence. I initially got in to bitcoin seeking out the Silk Road and though I only wanted to test it to buy small quantities of mdma, lsd, and mescaline back in 2011 there was all sorts of criminal activity on there like scam manuals, counterfeits, ID, Credit Card info, and other darknet markets like armoury were selling pretty crazy weapons. It has been alleged by Craig Wright that in his capacity as a digital forensics expert he was involved with tracing bitcoin that was used to fund the trafficking of 12-16 year olds on the silk road. There have been attempts at debunking such claims by saying that silk road was moderated for such stuff by Ulbricht and others, but one only has to take a look in to the premise of pizza gate to understand that there it may be possible to hide in plain site with certain code words for utilising the market services and escrow of websites like the silk road. The recent pedo bust from South Korea demonstrates the importance of being able to track bitcoin transactions and if the first thing BCH wanted to do after separating itself from Satoshi's Vision and running on developer and cartel agendas was to implement obfuscation methods, this type of criminal activity will only proliferate. Questions one must ask oneself then are things like why do they want this first? Are some of these developers, personalities and cartel businesses sitting on coins that they know are tarnished from the silk road and want to implement obfuscation practices so they can actually cash in some of the value they are unable to access? Merchants from the silk road 1 are still being caught even as recently as this year when they attempted to move coins that were known to have moved through the silk road. Chain analytics are only becoming more and more powerful and the records can never be changed under the original bitcoin protocol but with developer induced protocol changes like Schnorr signatures, and coinjoin it may be possible to start laundering these coins out in to circulation. I must admit with the cynicism I had towards government and law enforcement and my enjoying controlled substances occasionally I was sympathetic to Ross and donated to his legal fund back in the day and for many years claimed that I wouldn't pay my taxes when I wanted to cash out of bitcoin. I think many people in the space possess this same kind of mentality and subsequently can be preyed upon by people who wish to do much more in the obfuscation than dodge tax and party. Another interesting observation is that despite the fact that btc spun off as a result of censorship around big block scaling on bitcoin, that subreddit itself has engaged in plenty of censorship for basically anyone who wants to discuss the ideas presented by Dr Craig Wright on that sub. When I posted my part 2 of this series in there a week ago I was immediately met with intense negativity and ad hominems so as to discourage others from reading the submission and my post history was immediately throttled to 1 comment every 10 mins. This is not quite as bad as cryptocurrency where my post made it through the new queue to gather some upvotes and a discussion started but I was immediately banned from that sub for 7 days for reason "Content standards - you're making accusations based on no evidence just a dump of links that do nothing to justify your claims except maybe trustnodes link (which has posted fabricated information about this subreddit mods) and a Reddit post. Keep the conspiracy theories in /conspiracy" My post was also kept at zero in bitcoin and conspiracy so technically btc was the least censored besides C_S_T. In addition to the throttling I was also flagged by the u/BsvAlertBot which says whether or not a user has a questionable amount of activity in BSV subreddits and then a break down of your percentages. This was done in response to combat the "toxic trolls" of BSV but within bitcoincashSV there are many users that have migrated from what was originally supposed to be a uncensored subreddit to discuss bitcoin and many such as u/cryptacritic17 has have switched sides after having been made to essentially DOXX themselves in btc to prove that they aren't a toxic troll for raising criticisms of the way certain things are handled within that coin and development groups. Other prominent users such as u/jim-btc have been banned for impersonating another user which was in actual fact himself and he has uploaded evidence of him being in control of said account to the blockchain. Mod Log, Mod Damage Control, Mod Narrative BTFO. Interestingly in the comments on the picture uploaded to the blockchain you can see the spin to call him an SV shill when in actual fact he is just an OG bitcoiner that wanted bitcoin to scale as per the whitepaper. What is essentially going on in the Bitcoin space is that there is a battle of the protocols and a battle for social consensus. The incumbent BTC has majority of the attention and awareness as it is being backed by legacy banking and finance with In-Q-Tel and AXA funding blockstream as well as Epstein associates and MIT, but in the power vaccum that presented itself as to who would steward the big block variant, a posse of cryptoanarchists have gained control of the social media forums and attempted to exert their will upon what should essentially be a Set In Stone Protocol to create something that facilitates their economic activity (such as selling explosives online)) while attempting to leverage their position as moderators who control the social forum to spin their actions as something different (note memorydealers is Roger Ver). For all his tears for the children killed in wars, it seems that what cryptoanarchists such as u/memorydealers want is to delist/shut down governments and they will go to any efforts such as censorship to make sure that it is their implementation of bitcoin that will do that. Are we really going to have a better world with people easier able to hide transactions/launder money? Because of this power vacuum there also exists a number of different development groups but what is emerging now is that they are struggling for money to fund their development. The main engineering is done by self professed benevolent dictator Amaury Sechet (deadalnix) who in leaked telegram screen caps appears to be losing it as funding for development has dried up and money raised in an anarchist fashion wasn't compliant with laws around fundraising sources and FVNI (development society that manages BCH development and these donations) is run by known scammer David R Allen. David was founder of 2014 Israeli ICO Getgems (GEMZ) that scammed investors out of more than 2500 Bitcoins. The SV supported sky-lark who released this information has since deleted all their accounts but other users have claimed that sky-lark was sent personal details about themselves and pictures of their loved ones and subsequently deleted all their social media accounts afterwards. There are other shifty behaviours like hiring Japanese influencers to shill their coin, recruiting a Hayden Otto that up until 2018 was shilling Pascal Coin to become a major ambassador for BCH in the Australian city of Townsville. Townsville was claimed to be BCH city hosting a BCH conference there and claiming loads of adoption, but at the conference itself their idea of demonstrating adoption was handing a Point of Sale device to the bar to accept bitcoin payments but Otto actually just putting his credit card behind the bar to settle and he would keep the BCH that everyone paid. In the lead up to the conference the second top moderator of btc was added to the moderators of townsville to shill their coin but has ended up with the townsville subreddit wanting to ban all bitcoin talk from the subreddit. Many of the BCH developers are now infighting as funding dries up and they find themselves floundering with no vision of how to achieve scale or get actual real world adoption. Amaury has recently accused Peter Rizun of propagandising, told multiple users in the telegram to fuck off and from all accounts appears to be a malignant narcissist incapable of maintaining any kind of healthy relationship with people he is supposed to be working with. Peter Rizun has begun lurking in bitcoincashSV and recognising some of the ideas coming from BSV as having merit while Roger has started to distance himself from the creation of BCH. Interestingly at a point early in the BCH history Roger believed Dr Craig Wright was Satoshi, but once CSW wouldn't go along with their planned road map and revealed the fact he had patents on blockchain technology and wanted to go down a path that worked with Law, Roger retracted that statement and said he was tricked by Craig. He joined in on the faketoshi campaign and has been attempted to be sued by Dr Wright for libel in the UK to which Roger refused to engage citing grounds of jurisdiction. Ironically this avoidance of Roger to meet Dr Wright in court to defend his claims can be seen as the very argument against justice being served by private courts under an anarchocapitalist paradigm with essentially someone with resources simply being able to either flee a private court's jurisdiction or engage a team of lawyers that can bury any chances of an everyday person being able to get justice. There is much more going on with the BCH drama that can be explained in a single post but it is clear that some of the major personalities in the project are very much interested in having their ideals projected on to the technical implementation of the bitcoin protocol and have no qualms spouting rhetoric around the anti-censorship qualities of bitcoin/BCH while at the same time employing significant censorship on their social media forums to control what people are exposed to and getting rid of anyone who challenges their vision. I posit that were this coin to become a success, these "benevolent dictators" as they put it would love their new found positions of wealth/dominance yet if their behaviour to get there is anything to go by, would demonstrate the same power tripping practices of censorship, weasel acts, misleading people about adoption statistics and curating of the narrative. When the hashrate from Rogers bitcoin.com minging operation on BCH dropped dramatically and a lot of empty blocks were being mined, his employer and 2IC moderator u/BitcoinXio (who stepped in to replace roger as CEO) was in the sub informing everyone it was simply variance that was the reason when only a few days later it was revealed that they had reduced their hash power significantly. This is not appropriate behaviour for one of the primary enterprises engaged in stewarding BCH and encouraging adoption nor is the inability to be accountable for such dishonest practices as well. It seems bitcoin.com treats btc as their own personal spam page where Roger can ask for donations despite it being against the sub rules and spin/ban any challenge to the narrative they seek to create. Let's see how the censorship goes as I post this around a few of the same places as the last piece. Stay tuned for the next write up where I take a deep dive in to the coin that everyone doesn't want you to know about.
Cryptocurrency - is this the end game for fintech?
Blockchains, sidechains, mining - terms in the private world of cryptocurrency keep accumulating by minutes. Although it sounds unreasonable to present brand-new monetary terms in a currently elaborate world of financing, cryptocurrencies use a much-needed option to among the greatest inconveniences in today's cash market - security of deal in a digital world. Cryptocurrency is a specifying and disruptive development in the fast-moving world of fin-tech, a significant action to the requirement for a safe legal tender in the days of virtual deal. In a time when offers are simply digits and numbers, cryptocurrency proposes to do precisely that! In the most basic kind of the term, cryptocurrency is a proof-of-concept for alternative virtual currency that guarantees protected, confidential deals through peer-to-peer online mesh networking. The misnomer is more of a home instead of real currency. Unlike daily cash, cryptocurrency designs run without a main authority, as a decentralized digital system. In a dispersed cryptocurrency system, the cash is released, handled and backed by the cumulative neighborhood peer network - the constant activity of which is called mining on a peer's maker. Effective miners get coins too in gratitude of their time and resources used. The best cryptos to mine are always changing so insure you do your due diligence and figure out what is the best fit for you. When utilized, the deal info is relayed to a blockchain in the network under a public-key, avoiding each coin from being invested two times from the very same user. The blockchain can be considered the cashier's register. Coins are protected behind a password-protected digital wallet representing the user. Supply of coins in the digital currency world is pre-decided, without adjustment, by any private, companies, federal government entities and banks. The cryptocurrency system is understood for its speed, as deal activities over the digital wallets can emerge funds in a matter of minutes, compared to the conventional banking system. It is likewise mostly irreparable by style, additional strengthening the concept of privacy and getting rid of any additional opportunities of tracing the cash back to its initial owner. Regrettably, the prominent functions - speed, security, and privacy - have actually likewise made crypto-coins the mode of deal for many unlawful trades. Similar to the cash market in the real life, currency rates change in the digital coin community. Owing to the limited quantity of coins, as need for currency boosts, coins pump up in worth. Bitcoin is the biggest and most effective cryptocurrency up until now, with a market cap of $15.3 Billion, catching 37.6% of the marketplace and presently priced at $8,997.31. Bitcoin struck the currency market in December, 2017 by being traded at $19,783.21 per coin, prior to dealing with the abrupt plunge in 2018. The fall is partially due to increase of alternative digital coins such as Ethereum, NPCcoin, Ripple, EOS, Litecoin and MintChip. Due to hard-coded limitations on their supply, cryptocurrencies are thought about to follow the very same concepts of economics as gold - cost is figured out by the minimal supply and the changes of need. With the continuous variations in the currency exchange rate, their sustainability still stays to be seen. As a result, the financial investment in virtual currencies is more speculation at the minute than a daily cash market. In the wake of commercial transformation, this digital currency is an important part of technological disturbance. From the point of a casual observer, this increase might look amazing, threatening and mystical at one time. While some financial expert stay hesitant, others see it as a lightning transformation of financial market. Conservatively, the digital coins are going to displace approximately quarter of nationwide currencies in the industrialized nations by 2030. This has actually currently produced a brand-new property class along with the standard worldwide economy and a brand-new set of financial investment lorry will originate from cryptofinance in the next years. Just recently, Bitcoin might have swum to provide spotlight to other cryptocurrencies. However this does not signify any crash of the cryptocurrency itself. While some monetary consultants focus over federal governments' function in breaking down the private world to manage the main governance system, others demand continuing the existing free-flow. The more popular cryptocurrencies are, the more analysis and policy they draw in - a typical paradox that bedevils the digital note and wears down the main goal of its presence. In any case, the absence of intermediaries and oversight is making it extremely appealing to the financiers and triggering everyday commerce to alter significantly. Even the International Monetary Fund (IMF) fears that cryptocurrencies will displace reserve banks and worldwide banking in the future. After 2030, routine commerce will be controlled by crypto supply chain which will use less friction and more financial worth in between highly skilled purchasers and sellers. If cryptocurrency desires end up being a vital part of the existing monetary system, it will need to please extremely divergent monetary, regulative and social requirements. It will require to be hacker-proof, customer friendly, and greatly secured to provide its basic advantage to the mainstream financial system. It needs to protect user privacy without being a channel of cash laundering, tax evasion and web scams. As these are must-haves for the digital system, it will take couple of more years to understand whether cryptocurrency will have the ability to take on the real life currency in complete swing. While it is most likely to occur, cryptocurrency's success (or do not have thereof) of taking on the difficulties will identify the fortune of the financial system in the days ahead.
A very big thank you to everyone who participated in FinNexus’s first ever AMA session in the Wanchain Telegram! We were very pleased with the level of enthusiasm from AMA participants! We’re sorry to say that we weren’t able to answer every single question as we received close to 80 questions, and many of them were similar. However, we did our best to identify all the unique questions and answer them all as fully as possible. We have also selected the top ten 🏆🏆🏆winning questions🏆🏆🏆 of the AMA who’s askers will be receiving $20.00 worth of FNC each at the Wanchain address they submitted after the token generation event scheduled in January. (Feel free to ask any other questions in response to this post!)
TOP TEN QUESTIONS:
1.🏆 What’s special about Finnexus vs. others in the space? @oluap5773 Our closest competitors are traditional financial institutions which offer low risk, non blockchain based stable return and fixed return products. Our other competitors would be platforms such as Binance and Compound which offer centralized or decentralized stable return products based on crypto lending businesses. FinNexus has a unique focus on assets with real value built on blockchain infrastructure, which is rare in our other DeFi projects. Unlike Binance and Compound whose stable return products are based on crypto lending businesses, the assets we issue include those based on both real world and crypto businesses, which gives users access to reliable assets which are not correlated with the performance of crypto markets. And unlike traditional institutions, all our products are built on blockchain, which enables them to make use of all the blockchain’s advantages. 2. 🏆 What do you think of the future of DeFi in this space? @salmanmbstu96 Our expectation of the future DeFi is mainly on the application level rather than a technical one.
Borrowing and Lending cannot be everything about DeFi. The growth of the DeFi should be largely diversified to other assets and business models.
The risks in the DeFi world is similar, in other words, most of the DeFi models are facing the same systematic risks, which are with high risk and high expected return characteristics. In cases when the bitcoin collapses, every businesses and scenarios will be affected. This is not healthy.
The DeFi applications are not so user-friendly. One has to take some time to learn how to deal with one decentralized product.
A leading project in the future should have the ability to solve the problems above. Blockchain is a great technology, while the combination with finance cannot avoid the basic logic and be isolated from the successful scenarios and models we built. Different models here mean different application scenarios in the financial world, like the equity rights, debenture rights, derivatives or other beneficiary rights. The centralized or decentralized cannot be questions like yes or no. During the process of development, there may be something in between. On one hand it is built in a decentralized way and smart contracts are triggered automatically; while on the other hand, it is adapting the realistic that some parts of transactions or measurements must be under centralized regulations. We would like to call it Open Finance, as it is open to both the crypto assets on the blockchain, and the assets off the chain while restructuring their parts in a decentralized way. In the future, we believe that there will be leading projects, that can bridge the blockchain technology and real world assets, diversify the systematic risks while attracting more users, and be user friendly that the nonprofessional may easily operate. 3. 🏆 Give me reason’s why should I invest in #FinNexus? @cryptococuk01 I hope you read the write paper of FinNexus and got understandings on what FinNexus is about to do. FNC will be the sole token in the FinNexus ecosystem. It is a kind of hybrid token, like a utility token but also benefiting from FinNexus development. FinNexus will work as the financial product supermarket, Broker, Investment Banker or something alike. It will gain revenue directly from its operations. Holders of FNC is eligible to the following rights or benefits (will be explained in details on the FinNexus official websites): 1)Rights of higher rate of returns on tokenized products; 2)Rights to invest in tokenized products with lower cost; 3)Benefits on the discount on the transaction commissions; 4)Derivative rights, like early settlement, resale or interest swaps; 5)Rights to interact with WAN; 6)Benefits on the FinNexus’ development; the revenue of FinNexus is from: Underwriting; Investment banking; Market making; Transaction commissions; Investment in tokenized products. 4. 🏆 How can FinNexus goal be explained in layman’s terms? @iamthethirdkind You can actually get a clue from the project’s name ‘FinNexus’. The name is quite straightforward. FinNexus is the combination of the words ‘Finance’ and ‘Nexus’. It means financial connections. I will explain that in 3 aspects:
To asset owners
Finance here includes the ‘traditional’ and the ‘decentralized’ and traditional finance is only traditional compared to DeFi. Here FinNexus is aiming at providing a solution, which we call it a protocol, where one can link the traditional financial world with the blockchain technology in an efficient, transparent and feasible way. For example, one with assets that have good expected cash flows will find a way to easily tokenize the assets on FinNexus.
To users FinNexus will act as a financial product supermarket. Right now, the DeFi world has a problem that almost all of the crypto assets or financial products bear the same systematic risks, which means when the Bitcoin price collapses, every kind will join the plummet and even the financial models will cease to be valid. One of the reasons is that all assets are purely crypto-born. Moreover, the crypto interface is not so easy for a nonprofessional to operate. FinNexus’ goal is to provide diversification and convenience with assets of real value. Users will be able to invest in assets with various risks and returns here, and can easily choose to their preferences like in a supermarket.
FinNexus is concentrating in the application level, with the help of the two initiators. It will not operate or manage assets directly and will act as a channel or a hub, where supplies and needs are paired, while in later stages, it will strive to build the protocols or standards for all of these tokenizations and transactions. 5. 🏆 What are tokenized digital assets in FinNexus? How is it different from current digital assets? @hg144 The FinNexus team have done researches on the tokenization of real world assets. Right now, only a few groups like the credit assets, supply chain finance or other sub-dividable beneficial rights seem most feasible. These tokenized products may bear characteristics like equities, debentures, derivatives or other beneficiary rights. The noticeable differences lie in the nature of the products. The returns are from the cashflow of the real world assets, rather than mining, staking, speculating, etc. FinNexus combines the decentralized and centralized means. The tokens have advantages on chain, while the product design and disclosure draw lessons from traditional finance. Apart from that, there will also be products totally on chain, triggered by smart contracts, like crypto futures, options, and ETFs, with user-friendly interfaces. 6. 🏆 What are the advantages and disadvantages of FinNexus when developing in a large market like China? Do you have plans to develop other regions? @hiampluto Advantages: (1) The blockchain industrial environment and public opinion guidance has changed since China’s President Xi Jinping recent announcement. The word blockchain has been mentioned in social media time and time again, and almost everyone is trying to find out what it is. President made it clear that the country would encourage enterprises applying the technology into real world scenarios. (2) China has the largest population and made great technological progress over the last decade. Blockchain projects, communities, exchanges, token funds, medias, and other participants have established a complete and dynamic ecosystem. FinNexus is easy to access to these resources. (3) Financial market in China has been making great progress, which provides FinNexus with adequate talents, financial products and potential users. (4) The two initiators Wanchain and SuperAtom (incubated by Cheetah Mobile) are all based in China. They both give FinNexus big financial, human-power and community support, with minimum communication cost in the same city. Disadvantages: (1) Activities like ICOs or other forms of public fund-raising are still restricted; (2) The government’s attitude towards the security-like tokens and tokenization is still not clear; (3) Language and time zone discrepancy may cause difficulties. FinNexus is aiming to build a global open finance protocol. Blockchain should be boundless, and so will be our users and assets. Our first product’s basic asset is in SE Asia. We are now building teams, grouping communities, and recruiting regional ambassadors. Also, we are making continuous and effective interactions with the global communities of Wanchain and Bitrue. 7. 🏆 FinNexus’s team consists of experienced and brilliant individuals. What made them to unite together and work in unison for the fulfilment of it and how does it act as an advantage compared to other projects in terms of brainstorming and guidance? @cryptollll Though key members of FinNexus team seem to have different educational backgrounds or working experiences, we come together with the same beliefs and goals. The same purpose has united us together and after grinding-in over one and a half years, we are working together energetically and harmoniously, which provides a foundation for the success of FinNexus. It is not the first time we work together and we knew each other with for long time. The details of resumes are on the website. 8. 🏆 Many blockchain projects and companies focus on making very complex systems, say they will revolutionize the society, and help the unbanked. Since you work directly in the area, how realistic do you think such statements are? @lucbazanse The team has been working together for more than a year already. FinNexus is a project at the layer 3 level in the blockchain system, targeting at the application usage. The team believes that no matter how innovative or revolutionary a new technology is, if it fails to be conveniently applied in everyday use or have efficient or cost-saving solutions to users, we cannot call it a successful technology. Therefore, we will build our application on top of the successful public chains and concentrate in providing financially practical and risk diversified products and user friendly applications. We doubt that the unbanked can be helped by a complex system. Unbanked group of people usually exist in the less developed regions that lack basic infrastructure. They may not well educated or lack the basic understanding of the technology or even ideas of modern financial or banking system. Therefore, the application is most important. A successful project should provide them with friendly interfaces and convenient accesses, aiming directly to their basic needs, no matter how complex or innovative the technology is. That’s what FinNexus is trying to do, to provide what is needed the most in a simple and understandable way. 9. 🏆 Which way you will offer token sale? We create a new way of the token sales together with launching our products. FinNexus’ will issue its CFNC (convertible FNC), which gives holders the right to convert into ABT in the conversion period. The holders of ABT are eligible to the benefit with an annualized rate of return at over 10%. ABT is called the Asset Backed Token in general, in specific, the return of the token is backed by the consumer loan assets in Indonesia, with the originator SuperAtom, which is initiated by the NYSE listed company Cheetah Mobile, as the basic asset. It has a traditional hierarchical design and the ABT is the token in the senior tranche. The details will be disclosed in the Offering Circular on the FinNexus website later. We strongly recommend the interested blockchainers to check the details on www.finnexus.io 10. 🏆 Can you tell more about road-map for future developments? @toanphamhd In phase one, before the end of 2019 or early in 2020, FinNexus is introducing ICTO, combining the fund raising process with its products. Instruments with the essentials of ABT are likely to be one of the major products offered to users, with different systematic risks from the crypto assets. Before the first quarter of 2020, other products like the borrowing and lending, hedging, ETF and staking are likely to be issued, as well as the other schemes of the ABT products. FinNexus will also cooperate with at least three of the token exchanges, crypto wallets or other channels as the sale portals. In phase two, before the end of 2020, FinNexus will search for the qualified assets globally and combine the blockchain technology with the real world application scenarios in vaster occasions. And FinNexus work with other mainnet projects to launch its new products and interactions with the chain tokens. Moreover, FinNexus will facilitate the trade of the ABT and other similar products on the OTC market. The experience of the traditional financial market shows that the OTC transactions of these products have even higher volume than the bidding mode in the exchanges. In the third phase, in three years, FinNexus’ goal is to build an open finance protocol. This protocol is established on Layer 3, targeted on the application level. It will provide the basic standard for the tokenization and transaction for all types of assets, both in traditional finance and in the crypto world. All assets that provide future returns will be programmable with blockchain in the future and FinNexus is defining a protocol that provides the standards and convenience in realization. Different assets may apply to various requirements in details, but the common language lying in is what FinNexus is chasing for. While in the coming days, we would expect 1) the release of the detailed conversion and subscription rules on the website; 2) the release of the ABT offering circular to give a detailed explanation on the risks and returns; 3) setting the timetable for offering and listing of FNC.
RUNNER UP QUESTIONS
11. What is the current development progress of the project, and when is the main online release? @btc4life76 The first product will be released together with ICTO process, details of which you may check on the FinNexus website. Right now, the product is under the final stage of development and the team are working on the necessary information disclosure materials and the design of tokens on Wanchain. The planned release time will be before the end of this year or early next year. 12. “What are the recent change in high-level strategy in product design and development? How will it help the #FinNexus to move further with the safest & fastest Blockchain technology?” @ahmetumit08 FinNexus is a project built on layer 3 and concentrates on technological application. ‘We are the portal to the users and we need to make it simple, convenient, understandable and transparent’. The advantage does not lie in the sophistication of the underlying technology, but in the application level. To establish an Open Finance Protocol, FinNexus has to move earlier and faster than the others, and at present, it is the first in the industry to put forward this concept. In product development, we will make each code be used in real use case and keep improving in practice. In the beginning, we will built a layer 3 for assets tokenization and distribution, fee and interests distribution, buying and withdrawing. Users (business users) do not need to connect public chains, but use our SDK or API to interact with different chains. Recently we are focusing on protocols with smart contracts that asset tokenization could be easily deployed by FNX layer 3. And then we will focus on the protocol of decentralized token distribution. That means anyone who wants to sell assets tokens in FinNexus only need to download our SDK or connect our API. 13. How many different types of assets can be expected in the first quarter of 2020 . What will be the jurisdiction of assets and how will FinNexus avoid people from holding assets from restricted jurisdictions? @anon As a project incubated by SuperAtom, the UangMe assets will work as an initiator, and it has the potential of the amount of 100M USD. In the meantime, similar assets in Malaysia are under discussion. In addition, there will be other types of products the users may expect in the first quarter of 2020, like crypto borrowing and lending products, easy-operating crypto-currency derivatives, ETF products, staking related products, etc., and they are all under development right now. We have a legal team that help us deal with the jurisdiction issues. We will monitor the changing legal environment around the main countries and regions. KYC procedures are necessary for avoiding investors from holding assets from restricted jurisdictions. 14. How FinNexus and Wanchain both can get benefitted using each others protocol? @salmanmbstu96 FinNexus is the layer 3 which can make users, especially business users, to use Wanchain easily in financial aspects. And FinNexus focuses on different assets, that could grant Wanchain with more applications to run. In most of financial scenarios, multi-coin will be used, so we can use the cross-chain protocol of Wanchain. If Wanchain protocol is like a highway road, FinNexus protocol is working as an assembly line. 15. What do you think about Defi Landscape right now? @paraphan1992 Now, many DeFi projects are limited to the products and applications with the pure crypto assets. They can be highly decentralized and automated, but is it enough? 1) Borrowing and Lending is the first natural DeFi application scenario and contributes to over 90% of the application scenarios. It cannot be everything about DeFi. The growth of the DeFi should be largely diversified to other assets and business models. 2) The risks in the DeFi world is similar, in other words, most of the DeFi models are facing the same systematic risks, which are with high risk and high expected return characteristics. In cases when the bitcoin collapses, every businesses and scenarios will be affected. This is not healthy. Tokens transactions with high risks and the relating credit activities cannot be the whole world of DeFi. FinNexus is trying to introduce financial products with different types and levels of risks and expected returns, to enrich the products desperately needed in the industry. 3) The DeFi applications are not so user-friendly. One has to take some time to learn how to deal with one decentralized product. FinNexus aims at providing something that is transparent with the information needed for the investors to make judgment while easy to handle. Right now, Maker is trying to move to Multi-Collateral Dai (MCD), a big step to make the DeFi model richer and healthier. Also they introduce Dai Savings Rate (DSR), which may have the potential to be regarded as one of the standard rates. In the future, we may witness wider real world assets and application scenarios in DeFi and that is the path that DeFi is bound to follow. 16. Can FinNexus support smart contracts? @btc4life76 The answer is yes, smart contracts will play important roles in the FinNexus products. The first phase of products will be built on Wanchain and according to the ICTO rules, the ABT conversion and the future payment of principal and interest of ABT will all be supported by smart contracts. Again, for details of ICTO please check our website. In later phases ,we will develop other products based on ETH or other chains according to the users’ requirements and asset characteristics; and smart contracts will be richer and more diversified. 17. Why do we need DEFI? What is the new thing that DeFi bring to us? Was your project born for that? @oluap5773 A: The decentralized blockchain technology needs application scenarios, and the finance needs the innovative technology to solve its own problems, thus here comes the merge of the two. Bitcoin brings the blockchain technology into our sight and until now, it has 70% of the total value of crypto assets. Bitcoin is born to facilitate the financial transactions and most of the project henceforth cannot be isolated from the financial fields. There is an inevitable bond since the birth of the technology, and finance is always the natural experimental field of blockchain. The problem of information asymmetry is always puzzling investors and regulators. Most of the solution came from a centralized way from the authorities before, while the result was much diversified among regions. With the emergence of blockchain, it provides an alternative solution to this long-lasting issue. It is trustworthy, non-modifiable and self-proved. Moreover, it is bondless and anti-authorized, which can largely reduce the cost of international transactions while enhancing the efficiency. The technology is self-organized, decentralized and automated. DeFi has the potential to change the governance structure and investment behavior in the financial world. Tens of years ago, the internet has brought finance efficiency and popularization. Today blockchain is about to change the financial system again. It introduces the participants into a new territory that is bondless, decentralized, trustworthy, and equal. It will largely decrease the cost of centralized supervision, the risk of information asymmetry and the barrier among economic entities. Many business formats will change concerning the technology, including the economic entities, governance authorities, market intermediaries, exchanges and the transaction behavior of investors. For example, in the future, it is expected that the basic bookkeeping of a business entity will be on blockchain, and all of the operational activities like procurement, production, sales, inventories, invoices, taxations, employments, etc., will be dealt with and recorded in a decentralized way. Therefore, the auditors’ jobs are shifting from the bookkeeping test of accuracy to the verification of the validity of the chain. Of course, FinNexus is born to be part of the big change, and we strive to be one of the driving forces of the financial decentralization progress. The goal of FinNexus is to build an Open Finance Protocol. The protocol is like a channel or a standard, to allow all kinds of assets, whether decentralized or centralized, whether with characteristics of equity, debenture, derivative or other hybrid, to find its path towards tokenization with the blockchain technology. By maintaining the basic business logic and learning from the traditional financial model, FinNexus will combine with the advantages of the blockchain technology, to make investors truly benefit from decentralization. 18. Which target users does FinNexus aim to serve? Will its technology be easy for participants to use but still ensure open, transparent and equal way? @paraphan1992 FinNexus aims to serve those who know blockchain and have invested in crypto assets or DeFi products, those who know real world investment but little about blockchain, and those who know little about crypto assets or financial investment but interested in the blockchain technology and curious on the virtual assets. The meaning of ‘Nexus’ has many parts, and one is to make connections with different market participants. FinNexus will work through protocols and try to act as a channel. In future stages, it will make connections with the OTC markets providing fiat and crypto currency exchanges. Through these protocols, non-crypto users will be able to invest in the FinNexus products. As FinNexus is built on Layer 3, the protocol will be built combining the decentralized and centralized solution. User-friendliness is a must. By means of easy interfaces, full information disclosure and integrated protocols, users with various degree of knowledge and different risk tolerance are able to get their suitable investment, easily and transparently. whether decentralization or centralization, are means not targets. Openness, transparency and equality are necessary to lower credit risks in financial activities. The subscription, transaction, interaction and distribution of financial products will be on chain in a decentralized way, implemented by smart contracts; while the information disclosure, real assets collateral and basic assets operation will be off chain in a centralized way. FinNexus protocols will work to achieve such goals.
https://medium.com/@quizas_869/20-reasons-why-cryptocurrencies-are-worthless-b38f34e4d6b3 1)Private keys are being bruteforced as we speak. Quintillions entries a second. When they’ll have enough bitcoins under control , they can move them all at once instantly.(At least 45,000 ETH are known to have been stolen this way for now through ethereum bandit)SHA 256 is too old , bitcoin is 10 years old , it is not secure enough , quantum computing can break it. 2)It is possible to change the code anytime and change the total supply or anything. DASH did it : they reduced the total supply from 84M to 18.9M a few years ago. They could also increase it to 999 Trillions if they wanted to so that millions of DASH are mined every week. 3)You can also fork bitcoin anytime and start over the pyramid scheme from 0. (BCH , BSV , BTG , LTC , BCD ETC etc) 4)And that’s if people don’t find a way to create an infinite amount of coins to sell on exchanges.. it happened with monero , stellar , bitcoin , zcash , zcoin , eos , etc.. proofs : “Bitcoin , Coindesk : “The Latest Bitcoin Bug Was So Bad, Developers Kept Its Full Details a Secret”an attacker could have actually used it to create new Bitcoin — above the 21 million hard-cap of coin creation — thereby inflating the supply and devaluing current bitcoins.” Stellar : “Stellar Inflation: Glitch Leads to 2.25 Billion Extra XLM Printed” Monero : “A bug in the Monero (XMR) wallet software that could enable fake deposits to exchanges has been recently brought to public attention through a Medium post” Zcoin : Forged coins were created, but not exceeding 1% of the circulating supply. We will release further details on exact numbers when Sigma is released. EOS : “Hackers Forge Billion EOS Coins to Steal Real Crypto From DEX “ Zcash : “Zcash Team Reveals It Fixed a Catastrophic Coin Counterfeiting Bug” etc.. 5)Segwit , and especially Lightning network is a very complex technology and it will inevitably have flaws , bugs , it will be exploited and people will lose money. That alone can cause bitcoin to drop very low levels. 6)Then miners will be losing millions everyday so they will stop mining , blocks will be so slow , almost no transaction will come though , and bitcoin will probably not have enough time to reach the next difficulty adjustement. This is reffered to as a death spiral. Then every crypto even those with no mining involved will crash hard. 7)Many crypto wallets are unsafe and have already caused people to lose all their investment , including the infamous “parity wallet” 8)It is NOT trustless. you have to trust the wallet you’re using is not just generating an address controlled by the developper , you have to trust the node the wallet connects to is an honest node , you have to trust a Rogue state or organization with enough computing power will not 51% attack the network. etc.. 9)Bitcoin is NOT deflationary. Bitcoins are created every blocks (roughly every 10 minutes) and you wil be dead by the time we reach the 21 million current hard cap. 10)Bitcoin price is artificially inflated by Tether Other major non-technical problems : 11)It’s an energy waste , an environmental catastrophy 12)The only usecases are money laundering , tax evasion , gambling , buying on the dark net , evading sanctions and speculation. 13)Governements will ban it if it gets too big , and they have a big incentive to do so , not only for the obscure usecases but also because it threatens the stability of sovereign currencies. Trump could kill bitcoin with one tweet , force fiat exchanges to cease activity. 14)Most cryptos are scams , the rest are just crazy speculative casino investments 15)Think of any amount you hold in ethereum as a gift card to use smart contracts on the ETH blockchain. Ridiculous. You’d rather hold a wal mart gift card or even better simply cash. 16)It is pyramidal : early adopters intend to profit massively while last comers get crushed. 17)The very few stores accepting bitcoin always have the real price in the local currency , not in bitcoin. And prices like 0.004563298 BTC are ridiculous ! 18)About famous brokers listing bitcoin : they only want to give people an opportunity to short it , and make money on it as brokers do. 19)People say cash is backed by nothing and losing value slowly , and yes it is very flawed , but there is a whole nation behind it. The governement the police the taxes etc. Cryptos are so much worse it’s printed out of thin air we could change the algorythm of bitcoin to instantly mint an infinite amount of bitcoin , it is technically possible.. 20)Everybody in crypto think they’re smart traders and that there will be a new bullrun and that then , they will sell. But because everybody thinks it will happen , it won’t. The truth is past performance doesn’t indicate future performance and it is absolutely not guaranteed that there will ever be another bullrun. 21)Also BTC went from about $0.003 to the price it is today , so don’t think it’s cheap now. 22)There is no recourse if you’re scammed/hacked/made a mistake in the address etc. No chargebacks 23)In case of a financial crisis , the speculative assets would crash the most and bitcoin is far from being a non speculative safe heaven ; and governements might ban it to prevent fiat inflation to worsen. If prices would rise , whales stuck with cryptos would dump and cause an immediate huge drop. 24) Having to write down the private key somewhere or memorize it is a security flaw ! It’s insane to think a system like this will gain mass adoption. 25) The argument saying governements can not ban it because it is decentralized (like they banned drugs) doesn’t work for cryptos. First , drugs are much harder to find and much more expensive and unsafe because of the ban , and people are willing to take the risk because drugs are probably the best feeling in the world , but cryptos are nothing it’s all virtual. If crypto is banned , value will drop too much , you can’t sell it for fiat without risking jail , and goodluck to find a buyer. Fiat exchanges could close. Banks could terminate every crypto related bank account. And maybe then the mining death spiral would happen and kill all cryptos. 26) Crypto doesn’t exist. It’s all virtual. It’s like buying air. It’s just virtual collectibles generated by a code. 27)The overwhelming majority of crypto holders are buying it because they think they will be able to sell it to a higher price later. This is clearly the greater fool theory. updating..
Where is the resistance to changes that affect miners? Why is everyone just capitulating without a fight?
I don't get it. I seriously don't. Why is everyone just rolling over regarding the drop from 3 ETH to 2 ETH? Why is everyone accepting PoS as inevitable, or even the ice age? Remember when "authorities" tried and raise the block size on bitcoin? Remember UASF? The people revolted, gave the authority the finger, and the biggest names in crypto, the ones trying to drive the future of the project towards their interests found out they didn't have the control that they thought they did, because that's how a decentralized system works. And here everyone is, treating the whims of Vitalik as the word of god? Why? Everyone's just blindly following their "roadmap." Why? I didn't have any input in their roadmap. How about fuck their roadmap instead? How about everyday miners built ETH up to what it is today, and we steer it in a direction that keeps it that way instead of handing it over to large mining farms? How about we pressure pools, who have just as much to lose, not to accept the hard fork that's "set in stone?" Is there really consensus? Is it even a democracy? Was there a vote to reduce the block size that I wasnt aware of? Was there a vote for the difficulty bomb, or PoS? Ultimately we're the ones that run the blockchain, right? Why take orders from them? Isn't this like the entire point of blockchain, that there needs to be consensus? I certainly don't agree with the direction things are heading. So I'm declaring right now, that if this reduction to 2 ETH per block goes through, I'm done mining ETH. As an individual, that's all I can do until some large stakeholders in ETH mining step up to the fucking plate and stand against the powers that be and organize a resistance. I'd very very very much prefer it if there was an organized resistance to this change. A change that threatens literally everyone here. It's not too late. I mean come on, there are million dollar businesses at stake here. Where are you guys? Get together and show the people a better alternative, and they will support you. It is not as hard to block a hard fork as you think. Fuck all these EIPs. Just get the pools together and just say no, we're not upgrading. We're just not. Start a campaign to help the everyday miner understand how they're about to get boned, but there's still a chance to stop it. This will cost you far less than you stand to lose if it goes through. A loosely organized collection of bitcoin users were able to blockade a change that by and large the mining community wanted. They did it against the will of the people actually physically running the network. That's how hard it is to change a blockchain. Imagine how much easier it would be for the miners themselves to stop dead in it's tracks something so blatantly against their interest. It's very difficult to push a decentralized network in a certain direction. It's very, very easy to stop it from moving in any direction. The status quo protects the interest of miners. It's orders of magnitude easier to stop this change than it is for it to go through. That's the reality. Maybe you don't realize how much power you have as a miner. You have a lot. You can stop this. It wouldn't even be hard. So why do you just allow an engineer to dictate the future of your business, your livelihood? Or even your hobby? He doesn't own Ethereum. He doesn't own your business. He doesn't own your rig. He doesn't own anything. You don't need to accept it. Stand up and fight, before it's too late. Who cares how influential they are. We've got the high ground here, it should be an uphill battle for them. We own the land, and they're telling us how its going to work from the outside? Give me a break.
Ethereum. Before I explain why, I need you to understand something. Bitcoin and Ethereum are at two completely different stages within their potential. They also do not share the exact same mission; therefore, you do have to understand their differences to form an opinion about which one has the biggest use. Before we look at the coins in detail, let's start with the potential ROI (100% = 2x Original Investment). Bitcoin’s current market cap is $193,165,354,468 in order for you to make 100% this number would need to double to just under $400 Billion. Ethereum’s current market cap is $44,715,990,083 , roughly 1/5th of Bitcoins. In order for you to make 100%, the price would need to increase to just under $90 Billion. - This is obviously more probable. This will not serve as the only variable in making a decision, we now need to break down their uses and differences. Bitcoin What is Bitcoin? A purely peer-to-peer version of electronic cash would allow online payments to be sent directly from one party to another without the burdens of going through a financial institution. Digital signatures provide part of the solution, but the main benefits are lost if a trusted party is still required to prevent double-spending. We propose a solution to the double-spending problem using a peer-to-peer network. The network timestamps transactions by hashing them into an ongoing chain of hash-based proof-of-work, forming a record that cannot be changed without redoing the proof-of-work. The longest chain not only serves as proof of the sequence of events witnessed, but proof that it came from the largest pool of CPU power. As long as honest nodes control the most CPU power on the network, they can generate the longest chain and outpace any attackers. The network itself requires minimal structure. Messages are broadcasted on a best effort basis, and nodes can leave and rejoin the network at will, accepting the longest proof-of-work chain as proof of what happened while they were gone. Peer-to-Peer (P2P): is a technical way of saying computers (peers) that are connected together via the internet. Timestamps: are a sequence of characters that identify exactly when a certain event occurred, giving the exact time and date. Hashing: is the process of compacting large quantities of data into smaller fixed sizes. Proof-of-work: is the verification that the individual peer created the said hash Nodes: are computers that are connected to the blockchain Bitcoin is a first generation cryptocurrency, that was created in 2009 with the intention to become the currency of the internet. Its Applications Safe Haven Being that billions of people are under the control of a broke economy or volatile dictatorship, Bitcoin is beginning to become a medium in which people within underdeveloped countries feel as a more secure place to store their value. Remittances The current operation costs roughly $600B annually, all at the expense of separated families. Bitcoin can now serve as a tool that operates the exact same way and only costs 1/10th of the price. A transaction on the Bitcoin network also processes faster therefore giving the people a strong reason to make the switch. Currency Bitcoin is recognized as an asset, but can also be identified as an efficient currency in which people can buy and exchange with. With this being an application of Bitcoin, as the market continues to decrease in volatility, the use for Bitcoin will increase within businesses and everyday people that transact on a daily basis. These are just a few, but for the sake of answer length, let’s move onto some of the scalability issues with Bitcoin that hinder my decision of choosing Bitcoin over Ethereum. Bothering Issues with Bitcoin Energy A study from Digiconomist found that each transaction on the Bitcoin blockchain uses 236 KWh worth of electricity, this amount is enough to power 8 U.S households for an entire day. Scalability Energy consumption will hinder the scalability issues of Bitcoin, however the other issue that arises with POW mining is that with the increase in cost associated with mining BTC it is less economical to mine Bitcoin. This would limit the distributed nodes (miners) globally and allow a larger percentage of control to the dominant mining pools / farms. This would lead to a more centralized blockchain, where they can change the rules of BTC as they please. The supply of Bitcoin is finite, capped at 21 million. Eventually (currently predicted for 2140) Bitcoin's supply will run out. Once this happens, miners will no longer receive rewards for completing blocks but instead will be given fees. The fees will be drastically high in relative terms, and people will stop using the blockchain. Also, if miners decide that this is uneconomical for them to process the transactions and use their computing power elsewhere the speed of transactions for Bitcoin will drastically slow down, rendering one of the fundamental values of a Bitcoin (speed) useless. Blue chip Companies This is more so for all cryptocurrencies, but Bitcoin in particular. It’s not a matter of if but a matter of when a blue-chip company such as Facebook, Amazon or Google decides to implement their own cryptocurrency. Another possibility is a potential ‘world coin’ which global governments will all agree on using, this may seem unrealistic but it is definitely not impossible and many benefits would arise from having such a currency. Quantum Computing Bitcoin is said to be Quantum resistant, on the whitepaper it mentions that: ‘To compensate for increasing hardware speed and varying interest in running nodes over time, the proof-of-work difficulty is determined by a moving average targeting an average number of blocks per hour. If they're generated too fast, the difficulty increases.’ This may seem quantum resistant but it is important to understand that the difficulty is changed every 10 minutes and this is more than enough time for QC to mine all of Bitcoin’s remaining coins. Bitcoin Bubble The last point of this section is to recognize that the Bitcoin bubble could pop loud enough to crash the market. Due to a whole lot of hype, and even more speculative and uneducated buyers, Bitcoin could face a peak in which a simple spark Ethereum What is Ethereum? Ethereum is an open source platform with the mission to build and inspire next-generation decentralized applications. In other words, the applications being built on the Ethereum network would have no middle men. Users are able to interact safely with social and financial systems to transact peer to peer, therefore opening a new realm of opportunity within decentralized development on specifically the exchange of value. Like the Bitcoin network exchanges Bitcoin, applications within the Ethereum network would exchange ETHER. Therefore, making the Ethereum network have its own digital currency or, cryptocurrency that these decentralized applications would run on. On the Ethereum network, developers are able to build these decentralized applications simply, within this seemingly complicated new technology. Think of it as Shopify or Volusion, these are centralized networks in which users/developers can build e-commerce stores more efficiently and cost effectively. Ethereum is similar in this aspect, the network was essentially created to assist and fuel the growth of decentralized blockchain applications within its network. Smart Contracts Now, what Ethereum is based on, is a thing called “Smart Contracts” Developers are extremely excited about this tool, a smart contract is similar to how it sounds, it’s a digital contract that self-executes… Think of it as a virtual vending machine. A smart contract is a digital contract between two people in which the technology or tool handles the management, performance, enforcement and payment of the agreement. The smart contract has its own digital bank account of ETHER and settles once the product is received or the service is completed therefore greatly improving the efficiency of data tracking, payment processing and user friendliness of each decentralized application. Let’s dive into an example Music The first age of the internet brought quite a bit of disruption to the music industry… Idk if you knew, but if you we’re a songwriter 25 years ago and produced a hit song that got a million singles you would acquire royalties of up to $50,000. Now if you were to produce a hit song that gets a million streams you don’t get $50,000, you get $45… Enough to cover the first round at the bar. In result, musicians are now finding other ways to produce revenue with their music. One being the utilization of a blockchain ecosystem like Ethereum. Music applications are now being built for musicians to reclaim their content, smart contracts are being implemented into the music itself, therefore the music protects the intellectual property rights of the artist. You want to listen to the song? It’s free… or maybe a few micro pennies to download. You want to put the song in your video or movie? Make it your ringtone? These each cost a different price and presented at the point of purchase would be its underlying IP rights for the use of that piece of music. Musicians are absolutely hyped about this because now, the song becomes a business. It’s out there on this platform marketing itself, protecting the rights of the author and because the song has a payment system; in the sense of a bank account, all of the money then flows back to the artist, and they control the industry rather than these powerful intermediaries. This concept could apply not only to just songwriters but any creator of content, from art, to inventions, to scientific discoveries or the work from independent journalists. There are endless industries in which people do not gain fair compensation in which the underlying technology of Ethereum could benefit in a big way. Other examples: · A smart contract can be created to pay a worker for every hour they work, they log their hours on the blockchain and then after verification the funds are instantly transferred to them · Buying goods internationally can be tracked and verified – reducing fraud. · Property buying can be facilitated through the contract · Every industry that has a contract in place will be able to use the blockchain of Ethereum It is also worth noting that Ethereum is also a lot quicker than Bitcoin, average block time being 15 seconds for Ethereum opposed to 10 minutes for Bitcoin. Personally, I am invested into both. If I HAD to choose, like I said it would be Ethereum simply because of where it is now in comparison to its potential as well as its very transparent, direct, opportunistic mission towards the hosting of decentralized blockchain applications.
Dear Reddit community, Following our announcement for DTube v0.9, I have received countless questions about the new blockchain part, avalon. First I want to make it clear, that it would have been utterly impossible to build this on STEEM, even with the centralized SCOT/Tribes that weren't available when I started working on this. This will become much clearer as you read through the whole wall of text and understand the novelties. SteemPeak says this is a 25 minutes read, but if you are truly interested in the concept of a social blockchain, and you believe in its power, I think it will be worth the time!
I'm a long time member of STEEM, with tens of thousands of staked STEEM for 2 years+. I understand the instinctive fear from the other members of the community when they see a new crypto project coming out. We've had two recent examples recently with the VOICE and LIBRA annoucements, being either hated or ignored. When you are invested morally, and financially, when you see competitors popping up, it's normal to be afraid. But we should remember competition is healthy, and learn from what these projects are doing and how it will influence us. Instead, by reacting the way STEEM reacts, we are putting our heads in the sand and failing to adapt. I currently see STEEM like the "North Korea of blockchains", trying to do everything better than other blockchains, while being #80 on coinmarketcap and slowly but surely losing positions over the months. When DLive left and revealed their own blockchain, it really got me thinking about why they did it. The way they did it was really scummy and flawed, but I concluded that in the end it was a good choice for them to try to develop their activity, while others waited for SMTs. Sadly, when I tried their new product, I was disappointed, they had botched it. It's purely a donation system, no proof of brain... And the ultra-majority of the existing supply is controlled by them, alongside many other 'anti-decentralization' features. It's like they had learnt nothing from their STEEM experience at all... STEEM was still the only blockchain able to distribute crypto-currency via social interactions (and no, 'donations' are not social interactions, they are monetary transfers; bitcoin can do it too). It is the killer feature we need. Years of negligence or greed from the witnesses/developers about the economic balance of STEEM is what broke this killer feature. Even when proposing economical changes (which are actually getting through finally in HF21), the discussions have always been centered around modifying the existing model (changing the curve, changing the split, etc), instead of developing a new one.
You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.
What if I built a new model for proof of brain distribution from the ground up? I first tried playing with STEEM clones, I played with EOS contracts too. Both systems couldn't do the concepts I wanted to integrate for DTube, unless I did a major refactor of tens of thousands of lines of code I had never worked with before. Making a new blockchain felt like a lighter task, and more fun too. Before even starting, I had a good idea of the concepts I'd love to implement. Most of these bullet points stemmed from observations of what happened here on STEEM in the past, and what I considered weaknesses for d.tube's growth.
The first concept I wanted to implement deep down the core of how a DPOS chain works, is that I didn't want the token to be staked, at all (i.e. no 'powering up'). The cons of staking for a decentralized social platform are obvious: * complexity for the users with the double token system. * difficulty to onboard people as they need to freeze their money, akin to a pyramid scheme. The only good thing about staking is how it can fill your bandwidth and your voting power when you power-up, so you don't need to wait for it to grow to start transacting. In a fully-liquid system, your account ressources start at 0% and new users will need to wait for it to grow before they can start transacting. I don't think that's a big issue. That meant that witness elections had to be run out of the liquid stake. Could it be done? Was it safe for the network? Can we update the cumulative votes for witnesses without rounding issues? Even when the money flows between accounts freely? Well I now believe it is entirely possible and safe, under certain conditions. The incentive for top witnesses to keep on running the chain is still present even if the stake is liquid. With a bit of discrete mathematics, it's easy to have a perfectly deterministic algorithm to run a decentralized election based off liquid stake, it's just going to be more dynamic as the funds and the witness votes can move around much faster.
NO EARLY USER ADVANTAGE
STEEM has had multiple events that influenced the distribution in a bad way. The most obvious one is the inflation settings. One day it was hella-inflationary, then suddently hard fork 16 it wasn't anymore. Another major one, is the non-linear rewards that ran for a long time, which created a huge early-user advantage that we can still feel today. I liked linear rewards, it's what gives minnows their best chance while staying sybil-resistant. I just needed Avalon's inflation to be smart. Not hyper-inflationary like The key metric to consider for this issue, is the number of tokens distributed per user per day. If this metric goes down, then the incentive for staying on the network and playing the game, goes down everyday. You feel like you're making less and less from your efforts. If this metric goes up, the number of printed tokens goes up and the token is hyper-inflationary and holding it feels really bad if you aren't actively earning from the inflation by playing the game. Avalon ensures that the number of printed tokens is proportional to the number of users with active stake. If more users come in, avalon prints more tokens, if users cash-out and stop transacting, the inflation goes down. This ensures that earning 1 DTC will be about as hard today, tomorrow, next month or next year, no matter how many people have registered or left d.tube, and no matter what happens on the markets.
NO LIMIT TO MY VOTING POWER
Another big issue that most steemians don't really know about, but that is really detrimental to STEEM, is how the voting power mana bar works. I guess having to manage a 2M SP delegation for @dtube really convinced me of this one. When your mana bar is full at 100%, you lose out the potential power generation, and rewards coming from it. And it only takes 5 days to go from 0% to 100%. A lot of people have very valid reasons to be offline for 5 days+, they shouldn't be punished so hard. This is why all most big stake holders make sure to always spend some of their voting power on a daily basis. And this is why minnows or smaller holders miss out on tons of curation rewards, unless they delegate to a bidbot or join some curation guild... meh. I guess a lot of people would rather just cash-out and don't mind the trouble of having to optimize their stake. So why is it even a mana bar? Why can't it grow forever? Well, everything in a computer has to have a limit, but why is this limit proportional to my stake? While I totally understand the purpose of making the bandwidth limited and forcing big stake holders to waste it, I think it's totally unneeded and inadapted for the voting power. As long as the growth of the VP is proportional to the stake, the system stays sybil-resistant, and there could technically be no limit at all if it wasn't for the fact that this is ran in a computer where numbers have a limited number of bits. On Avalon, I made it so that your voting power grows virtually indefinitely, or at least I don't think anyone will ever reach the current limit of Number.MAX_SAFE_INTEGER: 9007199254740991 or about 9 Peta VP. If you go inactive for 6 months on an account with some DTCs, when you come back you will have 6 months worth of power generation to spend, turning you into a whale, at least for a few votes. Another awkward limit on STEEM is how a 100% vote spends only 2% of your power. Not only STEEM forces you to be active on a daily basis, you also need to do a minimum of 10 votes / day to optimize your earnings. On Avalon, you can use 100% of your stored voting power in a single mega-vote if you wish, it's up to you.
A NEW PROOF-OF-BRAIN
No Author rewards
People should vote with the intent of getting a reward from it. If 75% of the value forcibly goes to the author, it's hard to expect a good return from curation. Steem is currently basically a complex donation platform. No one wants to donate when they vote, no matter what they will say, and no matter how much vote-trading, self-voting or bid-botting happens. So in order to keep a system where money is printed when votes happen, if we cannot use the username of the author to distribute rewards, the only possibility left is to use the list of previous voters aka "Curation rewards". The 25% interesting part of STEEM, that has totally be shadowed by the author rewards for too long.
STEEM has always suffered from the issue that the downvote button is unused, or when it's used, it's mostly for evil. This comes from the fact that in STEEM's model, downvotes are not eligible for any rewards. Even if they were, your downvote would be lowering the final payout of the content, and your own curation rewards... I wanted Avalon's downvotes to be completely symmetric to the upvotes. That means if we revert all the votes (upvotes become downvotes and vice versa), the content should still distribute the same amount of tokens to the same people, at the same time.
No payment windows
Steem has a system of payments windows. When you publish a content, it opens a payment window where people can freely upvote or downvote to influence the payout happening 7 days later. This is convenient when you want a system where downvotes lower rewards. Waiting 7 days to collect rewards is also another friction point for new users, some of them might never come back 7 days later to convince themselves that 'it works'. On avalon, when you are part of the winners of curation after a vote, you earn it instantly in your account, 100% liquid and transferable.
Unlimited monetization in time
Indeed, the 7 days monetization limit has been our biggest issue for our video platform since day 8. This incentivized our users to create more frequent, but lesser quality content, as they know that they aren't going to earn anything from the 'long-haul'. Monetization had to be unlimited on DTube, so that even a 2 years old video could be dug up and generate rewards in the far future. Infinite monetization is possible, but as removing tokens from a balance is impossible, the downvotes cannot remove money from the payout like they do on STEEM. Instead, downvotes print money in the same way upvotes do, downvotes still lower the popularity in the hot and trending and should only rewards other people who downvoted the same content earlier.
New curation rewards algorithm
STEEM's curation algorithm isn't stupid, but I believe it lacks some elegance. The 15 minutes 'band-aid' necessary to prevent curation bots (bots who auto vote as fast as possible on contents of popular authors) that they added proves it. The way is distributes the reward also feels very flat and boring. The rewards for my votes are very predictable, especially if I'm the biggest voter / stake holder for the content. My own vote is paying for my own curation rewards, how stupid is that? If no one elses votes after my big vote despite a popularity boost, it probably means I deserve 0 rewards, no? I had to try different attempts to find an algorithm yielding interesting results, with infinite monetization, and without obvious ways to exploit it. The final distribution algorithm is more complex than STEEM's curation but it's still pretty simple. When a vote is cast, we calculate the 'popularity' at the time of the vote. The first vote is given a popularity of 0, the next votes are defined by (total_vp_upvotes - total_vp_downvotes) / time_since_1st_vote. Then we look into the list of previous votes, and we remove all votes in the opposite direction (up/down). The we remove all the votes with a higher popularity if its an upvote, or the ones with a lower popularity if its a downvote. The remaining votes in the list are the 'winners'. Finally, akin to STEEM, the amount of tokens generated by the vote will be split between winners proportionally to the voting power spent by each (linear rewards - no advantages for whales) and distributed instantly. Instead of purely using the order of the votes, Avalon distribution is based on when the votes are cast, and each second that passes reduces the popularity of a content, potentially increasing the long-term ROI of the next vote cast on it. GraphIt's possible to chart the popularity that influences the DTC monetary distribution directly in the d.tube UI This algorithm ensures there are always losers. The last upvoter never earns anything, also the person who upvoted at the highest popularity, and the one who downvoted at the lowest popularity would never receive any rewards for their vote. Just like the last upvoter and last downvoter wouldn't either. All the other ones in the middle may or may not receive anything, depending on how the voting and popularity evolved in time. The one with an obvious advantage, is the first voter who is always counted as 0 popularity. As long as the content stays at a positive popularity, every upvote will earn him rewards. Similarly, being the first downvoter on an overly-popular content could easily earn you 100% rewards on the next downvote that could be from a whale, earning you a fat bonus. While Avalon doesn't technically have author rewards, the first-voter advantage is strong, and the author has the advantage of always being the first voter, so the author can still earn from his potentially original creations, he just needs to commit some voting power on his own contents to be able to publish.
ONE CHAIN <==> ONE APP
More scalable than shared blockchains
Another issue with generalistic blockchains like ETH/STEEM/EOS/TRX, which are currently hosting dozens of semi-popular web/mobile apps, is the reduced scalability of such shared models. Again, everything in a computer has a limit. For DPOS blockchains, 99%+ of the CPU load of a producing node will be to verify the signatures of the many transactions coming in every 3 seconds. And sadly this fact will not change with time. Even if we had a huge breakthrough on CPU speeds today, we would need to update the cryptographic standards for blockchains to keep them secure. This means it would NOT become easier to scale up the number of verifiable transactions per seconds. Oh, but we are not there yet you're thinking? Or maybe you think that we'll all be rich if we reach the scalability limits so it doesn't really matter? WRONG The limit is the number of signature verifications the most expensive CPU on the planet can do. Most blockchains use the secp256k1 curve, including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Steem and now Avalon. It was originally chosen for Bitcoin by Satoshi Nakamoto probably because it's decently quick at verifying signatures, and seems to be backdoor-proof (or else someone is playing a very patient game). Maybe some other curves exist with faster signature verification speed, but it won't be improved many-fold, and will likely require much research, auditing, and time to get adopted considering the security implications.
In 2015 Graphene was created, and Bitshares was completely rewritten. This was able to achieve 100,000 transaction per second on a single machine, and decentralized global stress testing achieved 18,000 transactions per second on a distributed network.
So BitShares/STEEM and other DPOS graphene chains in production can validate at most 18000 txs/sec, so about 1.5 billion transactions per day. EOS, Tendermint, Avalon, LIBRA or any other DPOS blockchain can achieve similar speeds, because there's no planet-killing proof-of-works, and thanks to the leader-based/democratic system that reduces the number of nodes taking part in the consensus. As a comparison, there are about 4 billion likes per day on instagram, so you can probably double that with the actual uploads, stories and comments, password changes, etc. The load is also likely unstable through the day, probably some hours will go twice as fast as the average. You wouldn't be able to fit Instagram in a blockchain, ever, even with the most scalable blockchain tech on the world's best hardware. You'd need like a dozen of those chains. And instagram is still a growing platform, not as big as Facebook, or YouTube. So, splitting this limit between many popular apps? Madness! Maybe it's still working right now, but when many different apps reach millions of daily active users plus bots, it won't fit anymore. Serious projects with a big user base will need to rethink the shared blockchain models like Ethereum, EOS, TRX, etc because the fees in gas or necessary stake required to transact will skyrocket, and the victims will be the hordes of minnows at the bottom of the distribution spectrum. If we can't run a full instagram on a DPOS blockchain, there is absolutely no point trying to run medium+reddit+insta+fb+yt+wechat+vk+tinder on one. Being able to run half an instagram is already pretty good and probably enough to actually onboard a fair share of the planet. But if we multiply the load by the number of different app concepts available, then it's never gonna scale. DTube chain is meant for the DTube UI only. Please do not build something unrelated to video connecting to our chain, we would actively do what we can to prevent you from growing. We want this chain to be for video contents only, and the JSON format of the contents should always follow the one used by d.tube. If you are interested in avalon tech for your project isn't about video, it's strongly suggested to fork the blockchain code and run your own avalon chain with a different origin id, instead of trying to connect your project to dtube's mainnet. If you still want to do it, chain leaders would be forced to actively combat your project as we would consider it as useless noise inside our dedicated blockchain.
Another issue of sharing a blockchain, is the issues coming up with the governance of it. Tons of features enabled by avalon would be controversial to develop on STEEM, because they'd only benefit DTube, and maybe even hurt/break some other projects. At best they'd be put at the bottom of a todo list somewhere. Having a blockchain dedicated to a single project enables it to quickly push updates that are focused on a single product, not dozens of totally different projects. Many blockchain projects are trying to make decentralized governance true, but this is absolutely not what I am interested in for DTube. Instead, in avalon the 'init' account, or 'master' account, has very strong permissions. In the DTC case, @dtube: * will earn 10% fees from all the inflation * will not have to burn DTCs to create accounts * will be able to do certain types of transactions when others can't * * account creation (during steem exclusivity period) * * transfers (during IEO period) * * transfering voting power and bandwidth ressources (used for easier onboarding) For example, for our IEO we will setup a mainnet where only @dtube is allowed to transfer funds or vote until the IEO completes and the airdrop happens. This is also what enabled us to create a 'steem-only' registration period on the public testnet for the first month. Only @dtube can create accounts, this way we can enforce a 1 month period where users can port their username for free, without imposters having a chance to steal usernames. Through the hard-forking mechanism, we can enable/disable these limitations and easily evolve the rules and permissions of the blockchain, for example opening monetary transfers at the end of our IEO, or opening account creation once the steem exclusivity ends. Luckily, avalon is decentralized, and all these parameters (like the @dtube fees, and @dtube permissions) are easily hardforkable by the leaders. @dtube will however be a very strong leader in the chain, as we plan to use our vote to at least keep the #1 producing node for as long as we can. We reserve the right to 'not follow' an hardfork. For example, it's obvious we wouldn't follow something like reducing our fees to 0% as it would financially endanger the project, and we would rather just continue our official fork on our own and plug d.tube domain and mobile app to it. On the other end of the spectrum, if other leaders think @dtube is being tyranical one way or another, leaders will always have the option of declining the new hardforks and putting the system on hold, then @dtube will have an issue and will need to compromise or betray the trust of 1/3 of the stake holders, which could reveal costly. The goal is to have a harmounious, enterprise-level decision making within the top leaders. We expect these leaders to be financially and emotionally connected with the project and act for good. @dtube is to be expected to be the main good actor for the chain, and any permission given to it should be granted with the goal of increasing the DTC marketcap, and nothing else. Leaders and @dtube should be able to keep cooperation high enough to keep the hard-forks focused on the actual issues, and flowing faster than other blockchain projects striving for a totally decentralized governance, a goal they are unlikely to ever achieve.
A lot of hard-forking
Avalon is easily hard-forkable, and will get hard-forked often, on purpose. No replays will be needed for leaders/exchanges during these hard-forks, just pull the new hardfork code, and restart the node before the hard-fork planned time to stay on the main fork. Why is this so crucial? It's something about game theory. I have no former proof for this, but I assume a social and financial game akin to the one played on steem since 2016 to be impossible to perfectly balance, even with a thourough dichotomical process. It's probably because of some psychological reason, or maybe just the fact that humans are naturally greedy. Or maybe it's just because of the sheer number of players. They can gang up together, try to counter each others, and find all sorts of creative ideas to earn more and exploit each other. In the end, the slightest change in the rules, can cause drastic gameplay changes. It's a real problem, luckily it's been faced by other people in the past. Similarly to what popular and succesful massively multiplayer games have achieved, I plan to patch or suggest hard-forks for avalon's mainnet on a bi-monthly basis. The goal of this perfect imbalance concept, is to force players to re-discover their best strategy often. By introducing regular, small, and semi-controlled changes into this chaos, we can fake balance. This will require players to be more adaptative and aware of the changes. This prevents the game from becoming stale and boring for players, while staying fair.
Death to bots
Automators on the other side, will need to re-think their bots, go through the developement and testing phase again, on every new hard-fork. It will be an unfair cat-and-mouse game. Doing small and semi-random changes in frequent hard-forks will be a easy task for the dtube leaders, compared to the work load generated to maintain the bots. In the end, I hope their return on investment to be much lower compared to the bid-bots, up to a point where there will be no automation. Imagine how different things would have been if SteemIt Inc acted strongly against bid-bots or other forms of automation when they started appearing? Imagine if hard-forks were frequent and they promised to fight bid-bots and their ilk? Who would be crazy enough to make a bid-bot apart from @berniesanders then? I don't want you to earn DTCs unless you are human. The way you are going to prove you are human, is not by sending a selfie of you with your passport to a 3rd party private company located on the other side of the world. You will just need to adapt to the new rules published every two weeks, and your human brain will do it subconsciously by just playing the voting game and seeing the rewards coming. All these concepts are aimed at directly improving d.tube, making it more resilient, and scale both technologically and economically. Having control over the full tech stack required to power our dapp will prevent issues like the one we had with the search engine, where we relied too heavily on a 3rd party tool, and that created a 6-months long bug that basically broke 1/3 of the UI. While d.tube's UI can now totally run independently from any other entity, we kept everything we could working with STEEM, and the user is now able to transparently publish/vote/comment videos on 2 different chains with one click. This way we can keep on leveraging the generalistic good features of STEEM that our new chain doesn't focuses on doing, such as the dollar-pegged token, the author rewards/donation mechanism, the tribes/communities tokens, and simply the extra exposure d.tube users can get from other website (steemit.com, busy.org, partiko, steempeak, etc), which is larger than the number of people using d.tube directly. The public testnet has been running pretty well for 3 weeks now, with 6000+ accounts registered, and already a dozen of independant nodes popping up and running for leaders. The majority of the videos are cross-posted on both chains and the daily video volume has slightly increased since the update, despite the added friction of the new 'double login' system and several UI bugs. If you've read this article, I'm hoping to get some reactions from you in the comments section! Some even more focused articles about avalon are going to pop on my blog in the following weeks, such as how to get a node running and running for leadewitness, so feel free to follow me to get more news and help me reach 10K followers ;)
The Bitcoin difficulty chart provides the current Bitcoin difficulty (BTC diff) target as well as a historical data graph visualizing Bitcoin mining difficulty chart values with BTC difficulty adjustments (both increases and decreases) defaulted to today with timeline options of 1 day, 1 week, 1 month, 3 months, 6 months, 1 year, 3 years, and all time Why Bitcoin Difficulty is Important for Miners. While most everyday Bitcoin users don’t pay much attention to the current difficulty, it’s an extremely important number in the Bitcoin mining community. When someone is pointing their hashing power at the Bitcoin network, the difficulty basically gives them an idea of how quickly they’ll be Everyday a fixed supply of new coins gets created, and a varying percentage of that gets redistributed to the rest of the Bitcoin economy. Since miners are the only natural suppliers of Bitcoin, and the largest cohort of consistent sellers, profit margin is a key factor in determining the supply side dynamic. The Bitcoin network changes its mining difficulty every 2,016 blocks, roughly every two weeks, in order to keep the average block production interval at every 10 minutes. The network difficulty for the Bitcoin network spiked over 9.8% on Monday bringing the difficulty to its highest point ever. The record high of 17.35 trillion makes it much harder for bitcoin
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