5 blockchain trends to watch for in 2018 | The Enterprisers Project

https://enterprisersproject.com/article/2017/12/5-blockchain-trends-watch-2018?sc_cid=7016000000127ECAAY

Few new technologies have raised as much discussion as blockchain. One reason is the controversy, concern, and perceived opportunity around blockchain-based cryptocurrencies (such as bitcoin and ether) and crowdfunding via initial coin offerings (ICOs). But what is blockchain’s role in the enterprise? 

This article gives some ideas to think about. Take those trends with grain of salt. There will be a crash ans bubble burst on blockchains in few years.

388 Comments

  1. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Hackers Exploit Drupal Flaw for Monero Mining
    https://www.securityweek.com/hackers-exploit-drupal-flaw-monero-mining

    Network attacks exploiting a recently patched Drupal vulnerability are attempting to drop Monero mining malware onto vulnerable systems, Trend Micro reports.

    Tracked as CVE-2018-7602 and considered a highly critical issue that could result in remote code execution, the vulnerability impacts Drupal’s versions 7 and 8 and was addressed in April this year.

    The flaw is dubbed Drupalgeddon3 and the patch for it only works if the fix for the original Drupalgeddon2 vulnerability (CVE-2018-7600) has been applied.

    Last month, hackers were observed targeting both security vulnerabilities to deliver a variety of threats, including cryptocurrency miners, remote administration tools (RATs) and tech support scams.

    Trend Micro now says they noticed network attacks exploiting CVE-2018-7602 to turn affected systems into Monero-mining bots.

    Reply
  2. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Brian Armstrong / GiveCrypto.org:
    Coinbase CEO debuts Givecrypto.org to provide direct funding in cryptocurrencies to people in need, says fund has raised $3.5M, aims to raise $1B over two years

    Introducing GiveCrypto.org
    https://medium.com/givecrypto/introducing-givecrypto-org-fce707da03ee

    GiveCrypto.org’s mission is to financially empower people by distributing cryptocurrency globally. We will raise funds from cryptocurrency holders, and distribute small payments to people in need around the world — all using cryptocurrency. Initial recipients will be people living in emerging markets, especially those going through financial crisis.

    The goals behind GiveCrypto.org are to:

    Help people in need by sending money to them directly
    Advance real-world usage and benefits of cryptocurrency
    Provide universal access to an open financial system

    Reply
  3. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Pavel Alpeyev / Bloomberg:
    Chat app Line will open a crypto exchange next month in Singapore, which will be available in 15 languages to users worldwide except those in US and Japan

    Line Defies Cryptocurrency Bears to Open Exchange in Singapore
    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-06-28/line-defies-cryptocurrency-bears-to-open-exchange-in-singapore

    Line Corp., Japan’s biggest messaging service, is opening a cryptocurrency exchange next month even amid Bitcoin selloff that’s fueled pessimism over the future of virtual currencies.

    The exchange, called Bitbox, will offer trading between more than 30 virtual tokens including bitcoin, ethereum, bitcoin cash and litecoin, but not fiat currencies, the Japanese company said at an annual strategy briefing in Tokyo on Thursday. The website will be available in 15 languages to users worldwide, except for those in Japan and the U.S. Bitbox will charge a 0.1 percent trading fee.

    The move into cryptocurrencies comes at a time when the industry faces increasing regulatory scrutiny and security concerns that pushed the price of bitcoin about 60 percent lower this year. Line is expanding into financial services to reduce reliance on advertising revenue and offer a way to gain subscribers in countries dominated by Facebook Inc.’s Messenger and WhatsApp.

    “The potential of these services depends largely on usage trends for Line Pay,” JPMorgan analyst Haruka Mori wrote in a report. “We expect the fintech business to substantially expand its earnings contribution” in fiscal 2022.

    Reply
  4. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Thousands of cryptocurrency projects are already dead
    https://techcrunch.com/2018/06/29/thousands-of-cryptocurrency-projects-are-already-dead/?utm_source=tcfbpage&sr_share=facebook

    Two sites that are actively cataloging failed crypto projects, Coinopsy and DeadCoins, have found that over a 1,000 projects have failed so far in 2018. The projects range from true abandonware to outright scams, and include BRIG, a scam by two “brothers,” Jack and Jay Brig, and Titanium, a project that ended in an SEC investigation.

    Obviously any new set of institutions must create their own sets of rules and that is exactly what is happening in the blockchain world. But when faced with the potential for massive token fundraising, bigger problems arise. While everyone expects startups to fail, the sheer amount of cash flooding these projects is a big problem.

    Reply
  5. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Clipboard Hijacker Malware Monitors 2.3 Million Bitcoin Addresses
    https://www.bleepingcomputer.com/news/security/clipboard-hijacker-malware-monitors-23-million-bitcoin-addresses/

    While cryptocurrency has seen tremendous growth over the past year, sending cryptocoins still requires users to send the coins to long and hard to remember addresses. Due to this, when sending cryptocoins, many users will simply copy the address into memory from one application and paste it into another application that they are using to send the coins.

    Attackers recognize that users are copying and pasting the addresses and have created malware to take advantage of this. This type of malware, called CryptoCurrency Clipboard Hijackers, works by monitoring the Windows clipboard for cryptocurrency addresses, and if one is detected, will swap it out with an address that they control. Unless a user double-checks the address after they paste it, the sent coins will go to an address under the attackers control instead the intended recipient.

    This infection was spotted as part of the All-Radio 4.27 Portable malware package that was distributed this week.

    Reply
  6. Tomi Engdahl says:

    One of Facebook’s most senior engineers just became Director of Engineering, Blockchain
    https://techcrunch.com/2018/07/05/bookchain/?sr_share=facebook&utm_source=tcfbpage

    It was already known that Facebook had set up a group within the company to “explore” blockchain tech, headed up by long time Messenger chief David Marcus. However, the latest executive reshuffle appears to point to the social networking behemoth getting more serious about developing on top of blockchain technology.

    Reply
  7. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Hans Lee / Bloomberg:
    IBM secures AU$1B contract to be the central technology partner to Australian government over the next five years, providing automation and blockchain services

    IBM Lands $740 Million Deal to Supply Data Security to Australia
    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-07-05/ibm-lands-740-million-deal-to-supply-data-security-to-australia

    International Business Machines Corp. has secured a A$1 billion ($740 million) agreement to become a central technology partner of the Australian government over the next five years.

    The contract will see services such as automation and blockchain provided to federal departments including defense and home affairs, IBM’s Asia Pacific head, Harriet Green, said in an interview with Bloomberg TV on Thursday.

    IBM, which is combating falling revenues, will also create renewed platforms to protect citizens’ data while providing A$100 million in savings to taxpayers, according to government estimates.

    Reply
  8. Tomi Engdahl says:

    First-Ever Person Sentenced for Malicious Use of Coinhive Library
    https://www.bleepingcomputer.com/news/security/first-ever-person-sentenced-for-malicious-use-of-coinhive-library/

    Authorities in Japan have sentenced a man for the first time for using the Coinhive JavaScript library for malicious purposes.

    According to local news outlet Kahoku, a judge from the city of Amagasaki sentenced a 24-year-old man named Masato Yasuda to one year in prison but suspended the sentence for three years. This means the man will remain free, but if he breaks the law in the following three years, he’ll go to prison for one year.

    The accused made only $45

    Yasuda embedded the Coinhive JavaScript library inside a game cheat tool he later offered for download.

    Authorities say the tool was downloaded over 90 times and helped Yasuda make 5,000 yen worth of Monero cryptocurrency, which is around $45.

    “The defendant regretted what he did, learning information ethics and other matters,” said the judge

    Japan clamping down on the abusive use of Coinhive

    The use of the library is contentious, especially if site owners don’t request permission from users, and the library has become a favorite among malware authors who often deploy it on hacked sites.

    While Yasuda didn’t use the library on a site, he is the first ever person to be sentenced for using it.

    Other sentences are most likely to follow because last month, Japanese authorities from 10 prefectures arrested 16 individuals suspected of involvement in cryptojacking, a term used to describe the practice of secretly adding Coinhive to a site.

    Reply
  9. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Many of your thoughts on cryptosystems are not true

    The world is slowly moving towards a completely digital monetary system and cryptographic currencies have an important role in this development. The company called GlobalData reminds us that many of the allegations associated with the CRM are not true.

    In its “Cryptocurrencies – Thematic Research” survey, GlobalData says that while block logs and DLT (Distributed Ledger Technologies) play an important role in modernizing financial systems, thinking that the boulders themselves have brought tremendous savings, is an imagination.

    - Many of the arguments put forward by the crypto curators are not true. It is alleged that the crypt sword will speed up financial transactions, remove the middlemen from the deal and be free, but none of these is true, says GlobalData analyst Gary Barnett.

    Chryptovegoods are not free. At its peak, the price of a Bitcoin transaction exceeded $ 50, which was not very well matched with $ 25 groceries. Although the purchase price is about one dollar when there is no load on the web, the amount will inevitably increase as the volumes rise again.

    Still, no cryptographic currency will be accepted and exchanged widely.

    The big problem is that the crypto currencies can not be scaled. Visa system can support 24,000 transactions per second. In Bitcoin, it is difficult to access more than 10 transactions per second. The only thing close to the Visio’s readership is the Ripple

    Source: http://www.etn.fi/index.php/13-news/8177-monet-luulot-kryptovaluutoista-eivat-pida-paikkaansa

    Reply
  10. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Early uses of blockchain will barely be visible, says Hyperledger’s Brian Behlendorf
    https://techcrunch.com/2018/07/06/early-uses-of-blockchain-will-barely-be-visible/?utm_source=tcfbpage&sr_share=facebook

    The blockchain revolution is coming, but you might not see it. That’s the view of Brian Behlendorf, executive director of the Linux Foundation’s Hyperledger Project.

    much of the innovation that the introduction of blockchains are primed to happen behind this the scenes unbeknownst to most.

    “For a lot of consumers, you’re not going to realize when the bank or a web form at a government website or when you go to LinkedIn and start seeing green check marks against people’s claims that they attended this university — which are all behind-the-scenes that will likely involve blockchain,” Behlendorf told interviewer John Biggs.

    “This is a revolution in storage and networking and consumers.”

    the area of online identity is particularly ripe for change. Rather than relying on central systems such as Facebook or Twitter to hold information, blockchain solutions can potentially store information more securely and with more utility thanks to self-sovereign ID systems.

    we want to see companies building services on top of this

    Reply
  11. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Parity’s Jutta Steiner says the future of blockchain is many chains working together
    https://techcrunch.com/2018/07/06/paritys-jutta-steiner-says-the-future-of-blockchain-is-many-chains-working-together/?utm_source=tcfbpage&sr_share=facebook

    Few debates can get as heated in blockchain circles as the simple question: which chain(s)? Will a single public blockchain such as Ethereum become the one chain to rule us all, or will multiple chains co-exist in the marketplace?

    Steiner has a vision of a decentralized, multi-chain future, but is also diligently building that future through new tools. Parity is spearheading a new network known as Polkadot, which is designed to create an interoperability layer between different blockchains. Unlike with a single hegemonic chain, a multi-chain network would empower developers to create application-specific chains appropriate for different types of workflows. “What we tried to do was basically come up with the most general framework,” she said. “You need different systems for different applications.”

    Connecting chains is one thing, but building them from scratch then becomes the new bottleneck. That’s where another Parity technology — Substrate — comes in handy. Substrate is a framework to make it easier to launch blockchains with proper governance from the start

    Together, these technologies and others combine into what Steiner described as Web3 — a future vision of a decentralized web built on blockchain that will empower the next generation of web users to control their data more robustly.

    Reply
  12. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Penny Crosman / American Banker:
    CipherTrace: the amount of cryptocurrencies stolen from exchanges tripled to $761M in the first half of 2018 compared to all of 2017, may reach $1.5B this year

    Crypto money laundering up threefold in 2018: Report
    https://www.americanbanker.com/news/crypto-money-laundering-rose-3x-in-first-half-2018-report

    Three times more cryptocurrency was stolen from exchanges in the first half of 2018 than all of 2017, with a corresponding boost in money laundering related to crypto, according to a report released Tuesday by CipherTrace.

    Reply
  13. Tomi Engdahl says:

    RIP “crypto”
    https://techcrunch.com/2018/07/07/rip-crypto/?utm_source=tcfbpage&sr_share=facebook

    RIP “crypto”. You had a good run.

    This week veteran cryptographer Matt Blaze, finally gave in

    So crypto.com now points to cryptocurrencies.

    Which seems a fitting moment to say RIP “crypto” as shorthand terminology for an entire domain of cryptographic work that underpins so many more things than just Bitcoin or Ether or Ripple or Litecoin or Zcash — or any of the myriad digital coins that have winked (and more recently minted) into virtual existence over the last decade or so, hoping to hit the crypto jackpot.

    Frankly this is not at all fair. But, linguistically, so it goes.

    So cryptocurrency colloquially colonizing “crypto” was really only a matter of time, given how many joules of attention-energy are being claimed and drained in its name.

    Turns out language change can have plenty to do with the price of Bitcoin.

    Crypto(currency) could ultimately even lose the ‘crypto’ prefix should the technology end up becoming so ubiquitous as to be considered synonymous with the generic term “currency

    Reply
  14. Tomi Engdahl says:

    CipherTrace Unveils Crypto-Currency Anti-Money Laundering Solution
    https://www.securityweek.com/ciphertrace-unveils-crypto-currency-anti-money-laundering-solution

    Cryptocurrency theft and its use to launder other illegal activity is booming. This has prompted the evolution of a related industry that sits on the borderline of legality (barely legal in some jurisdictions, illegal in others): cryptocurrency money laundering. The laundering of illegally-obtained money may be illegal, but the process used may not be.

    Menlo Park, Calif. startup CipherTrace is a firm founded on the need for cryptocurrency anti-money laundering (AML), blockchain forensics and enforcement solutions. It aids law enforcement and financial regulators in their investigations, helps enterprises to deploy real-world cryptocurrency transactional systems within regulations, and offers a bitcoin scam and theft asset recovery service.

    https://ciphertrace.com/

    Reply
  15. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Muyao Shen / CoinDesk:
    Token creation platform Bancor, which raised $153M in last year’s ICO, has gone offline after a security breach that successfully stole ~$13.5M worth of crypto — Token creation platform Bancor has gone offline following a “security breach” that took place Monday morning.

    $13.5 Million in Crypto Stolen From Token Platform Bancor
    https://www.coindesk.com/token-platform-bancor-goes-offline-following-security-breach/

    Token creation platform Bancor has gone offline following a “security breach” that took place Monday morning that saw the platform lose millions of dollars worth of cryptocurrency.

    Bancor posted on Twitter that it took its platform offline following the security incident, stating that “no user wallets were compromised.”

    “To complete the investigation, we have moved to maintenance and will be releasing a more detailed report shortly. We look forward to being back online as soon as possible.” A spokesperson for Bancor confirmed the incident when reached by email.

    Reply
  16. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Crypto and venture’s biggest names are backing a new distributed ledger project called Oasis Labs
    https://techcrunch.com/2018/07/09/distributed-ledgeroasis-labs/?utm_source=tcfbpage&sr_share=facebook

    A team of top security researchers from the University of California, Berkeley and MIT have come together to launch a new cryptographic project that combines secure software and hardware to enable privacy-preserving smart contracts under the banner of Oasis Labs.

    That vision, which is being marketed as the baby of a union between Ethereum and Amazon Web Services

    https://www.oasislabs.com

    Reply
  17. Tomi Engdahl says:

    6 open source cryptocurrency wallets
    https://opensource.com/article/18/7/crypto-wallets?sc_cid=7016000000127ECAAY

    Are you looking for a place to store and trade your Bitcoin, Ethereum, or other cryptocurrency? Check out these six open source options.

    Reply
  18. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Brexit means blockchains, lots and lots of blockchains
    https://techcrunch.com/2018/07/12/brexit-means-blockchains-lots-and-lots-of-blockchains/?utm_source=tcfbpage&sr_share=facebook

    Does Brexit mean blockchain? The UK government has published a whitepaper — some two years in the baking — where it sets out its fuzzy thinking in an attempt to move beyond two years of Brexit fudge by squashing its warring factions behind a compromise customs arrangement to try to live up to its promise of a “future relationship with the European Union”, i.e. without lashings of fudge.

    Unfortunately though, for citizen sanity, business reality, and, well, anyone not happy gambling everything on fantastically functional systems that don’t exist yet, it’s still leaning heavily on undefined technological solutions to try to make its alternative customs arrangement fly.

    Which raises the obvious question of how goods will be effectively tracked in order for tariffs to be correctly calculated and/or remitted.

    The risk of customs fraud draining EU (and/or indeed UK) coffers

    The UK’s great white hope is that cutting-edge technologies will save the day.

    The whitepaper specifically mentions the possibility of “exploring how machine learning and artificial intelligence

    But the whitepaper’s suggestive techno-solutioneering goes further — describing something that sounds suspiciously like a blockchain.

    Or, actually, lots and lots and lots of blockchains.

    Reply
  19. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Russian hackers used bitcoin to fund election interference, so prepare for FUD
    https://techcrunch.com/2018/07/13/russian-hackers-used-bitcoin-to-fund-election-interference-so-prepare-for-fud/?utm_source=tcfbpage&sr_share=facebook

    the alleged hackers paid for their nefarious deeds with bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

    It is perhaps the most popular and realistic argument against cryptocurrency that it enables anonymous transactions globally and at scale, no exception made for Russian intelligence or ISIS. So the news that a prominent and controversial technology was used to fund state-sponsored cyber attacks will not be passed over by its critics.

    You can expect bluster on cable news and some sharp words from lawmakers, who will also probably issue some kind of public denouncement of cryptocurrencies and call for more stringent regulation. It’s only natural: their constituencies will hear that Russians are using bitcoin to hack the election systems and take it at face value. They have to say something.

    But this knee-jerk criticism is misguided and hypocritical for several reasons.

    the process of laundering, after all, becomes rather difficult when there is an immutable, peer-maintained record of every penny being pushed around

    So although bitcoin has its shady side, it’s far from perfect secrecy

    it doesn’t provide much in the way of new capabilities for those who wish to keep secret their activities online.

    Reply
  20. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Coinbase gets approval from U.S. regulators to start listing tokenized securities
    https://techcrunch.com/2018/07/16/coinbase-reportedly-gets-approval-from-u-s-regulators-to-start-listing-tokenized-securities/?utm_source=tcfbpage&sr_share=facebook

    Coinbase shared big news Monday that federal regulators are allowing the popular cryptocurrency exchange to proceed with plans to sell cryptocurrency tokens that are deemed securities.

    Last month, Coinbase acquired Keystone Capital, a California-based FINRA-registered broker-dealer that operates as an alternative trading system.

    Reply
  21. Tomi Engdahl says:

    0x lets any app be the Craigslist of cryptocurrency
    https://techcrunch.com/2018/07/16/0x/?utm_source=tcfbpage&sr_share=facebook

    Centralized crypto exchanges like Coinbase are easy but expensive because they introduce a middleman. Not-for-profit project 0x allows any developer to quickly build their own decentralized cryptocurrency exchange and decide their own fees. It acts like Craigslist, connecting traders without ever holding the tokens itself.

    https://0xproject.com

    Reply
  22. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Bitcoin price passes $7K bringing all 100 top coins up with it
    https://techcrunch.com/2018/07/17/bitcoin-price-july-2018/?utm_source=tcfbpage&sr_share=facebook

    Bitcoin is moving up, and it’s taking 99 of its best friends along for the ride. In the last 24 hours, every one of the top 100 coins by market cap was in the green, with 84 of them posting gains of over 5 percent.

    Reply
  23. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Malta paves the way for a decentralized stock exchange
    https://techcrunch.com/2018/07/19/malta-paves-the-way-for-a-decentralized-stock-exchange/?sr_share=facebook&utm_source=tcfbpage

    AdChoices

    Malta paves the way for a decentralized stock exchange
    John Biggs
    @johnbiggs / 16 hours ago

    ferenc-horvath-678125-unsplash
    Malta AKA “Blockchain Island” has been making waves lately in the world of cryptocurrency and governance. Their latest move involves the crypto exchange Binance and the ICO builders at Neufund.

    The plan is simple: Neufund will help MSX, the Malta Stock Exchange’s skunkworks, create tokenized securities. Binance has agreed to carry these securities on its own exchange, essentially creating a straight path to regulated tokens via the already regulated Malta Stock Exchange. In short, this enables Malta to become the first country to be able to offer tokens alongside traditional equities as well as an easy way to go public in multiple ways including via ICO.

    The plan is still in the pilot stage.

    Reply
  24. Tomi Engdahl says:

    https://yle.fi/uutiset/3-10277865
    Yle Kryptolaaksossa: Esineiden internetissä jääkaappisikin tuottaa arvokasta tietoa – Tulevaisuudessa voit myydä laitteidesi tuottaman datan

    Reply
  25. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Rental attacks mean that blockchains must evolve or die
    https://techcrunch.com/2018/07/22/rental-attacks-mean-that-blockchains-must-evolve-or-die/?utm_source=tcfbpage&sr_share=facebook

    AdChoices

    Rental attacks mean that blockchains must evolve or die
    Abraham Othman
    10 hours ago

    Bitcoin Litecoin Ethereum mining
    Abraham Othman
    Contributor
    Abraham Othman is a visiting scholar in the Operations, Information and Decisions department of the Wharton School (University of Pennsylvania). He is an advisor to a number of blockchain applications including Augur, Codex, and Decent.
    Blockchain technologies have a well-earned reputation for hacking and fraud, but the recent theft of more than twenty million dollars of second-tier cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin Gold, Verge, and ZenCash was a fundamental attack on the core mechanisms that allow cryptocurrencies to function. The way that most blockchains (including Bitcoin and Ethereum) function now is called Proof-of-Work; miners must solve hard computational problems to add new blocks of transactions to the chain and the majority (i.e., 51%) of the computational power can determine what transactions appear in the public ledger.

    In May and June, these second-tier cryptocurrencies suffered from what is called a “51% attack”, where attackers rented more processing power than the honest participants of the network, enabling them to control the transaction register and engage in nefarious behavior.

    any blockchain with reasonably low transaction fees is fundamentally vulnerable to 51% attacks. The risk of these attacks was known, informally, from the earliest days of cryptocurrency, and to counter this risk exchanges do not immediately credit deposits.

    The average Bitcoin transaction fee is about a dollar; Budish suggests that these fees should be 100x higher (or more) to secure Bitcoin’s blockchain.

    why Bitcoin appears secure while other currencies are not: only a small fraction of the mining capability of the Bitcoin network is available to rent. Bitcoin remains secure because there is a great deal of scarcity in the market for latest-generation mining equipment, such as the expensive ASIC chips

    Looking at the hourly attack-rental prices on Crypto 51 (generally only a few thousand dollars) it is easy to draw the conclusion that every cryptocurrency other than Bitcoin and (perhaps) Ethereum should simply not exist because it is too easy for scammers to destabilize them.

    The threat of rental attacks means that Proof-of-Work blockchains must evolve or die. Ethereum is in the process of rolling out just such an evolution, called Casper.

    Casper would be a big change to the way Ethereum works and it faces considerable pushback from the community. To be fair, it is not a finished product yet

    Budish’s economic argument suggests that any Proof-of-Work blockchain with low transaction fees will be vulnerable to rental attacks. If blockchain technologies have a future, it will not be from Proof-of-Work.

    Reply
  26. Tomi Engdahl says:

    The blockchain begins finding its way in the enterprise
    https://techcrunch.com/2018/07/22/the-blockchain-begins-finding-its-way-in-the-enterprise/?sr_share=facebook&utm_source=tcfbpage

    The blockchain is in the middle of a major hype cycle at the moment, and that makes it hard for many people to take it seriously, but if you look at the core digital ledger technology, there is tremendous potential to change the way we think about trust in business. Yet these are still extremely early days and there are a number of missing pieces that need to be in place for the blockchain to really take off in the enterprise.

    Reply
  27. Tomi Engdahl says:

    The blockchain begins finding its way in the enterprise
    https://techcrunch.com/2018/07/22/the-blockchain-begins-finding-its-way-in-the-enterprise/

    Decentralization
    The blockchain is in the middle of a major hype cycle at the moment, and that makes it hard for many people to take it seriously, but if you look at the core digital ledger technology, there is tremendous potential to change the way we think about trust in business. Yet these are still extremely early days and there are a number of missing pieces that need to be in place for the blockchain to really take off in the enterprise.

    Suffice it to say that it has caught the fancy of major enterprise vendors with the likes of SAP, IBM, Oracle, Microsoft and Amazon all looking at providing some level of Blockchain as a service for customers.

    Reply
  28. Tomi Engdahl says:

    How to price cryptocurrencies
    https://techcrunch.com/2018/01/22/how-to-price-cryptocurrencies/?utm_source=tcfbpage&sr_share=facebook

    Predicting cryptocurrency prices is a fool’s game, yet this fool is about to try. The drivers of a single cryptocurrency’s value are currently too varied and vague to make assessments based on any one point. News is trending up on Bitcoin? Maybe there’s a hack or an API failure that is driving it down at the same time. Ethereum looking sluggish? Who knows: Maybe someone will build a new smarter DAO tomorrow that will draw in the big spenders.

    So how do you invest? Or, more correctly, on which currency should you bet?

    From the acorn of Linux an open-source forest bloomed. But there was one clear problem: You couldn’t make money from open source. You could consult and you could sell products that used open-source components, but early builders built primarily for the betterment of humanity and not the betterment of their bank accounts.

    Cryptocurrencies have followed the Linux model almost exactly, but cryptocurrencies have cash value. Therefore, when you’re working on a crypto project you’re not doing it for the common good or for the joy of writing free software. You’re writing it with the expectation of a big payout. This, therefore, clouds the value judgements of many programmers. The same folks that brought you Python, PHP, Django and Node.js are back… and now they’re programming money.

    Reply
  29. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Polina Marinova / Fortune:
    Source: Bitmain plans to file for an IPO soon; the company booked $1.1B in net profits in Q1 2018 and is raising new funding that would value it at ~$14B — The co-CEO of Bitmain Technologies, the world’s largest cryptocurrency mining company, recently revealed plans to conduct …

    Scoop: Bitcoin Mining Company Bitmain Hit $1.1 Billion in Profits in Q1 2018
    http://fortune.com/2018/07/30/bitmain-valuation-profits/

    The co-CEO of Bitmain Technologies, the world’s largest cryptocurrency mining company, recently revealed plans to conduct an initial public offering in Hong Kong, or in an overseas market with U.S. dollar-denominated shares. The IPO would give early investors, including Sequoia Capital and IDG Capital, an opportunity to cash out.

    Reply
  30. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Ian Allison / CoinDesk:
    IBM and CLS debut LedgerConnect, a blockchain platform for financial services firms, nine of which are using the proof of concept, including Barclays and Citi — Even private and permissioned blockchains need to build ecosystems and achieve network effects, just like their permissionless, public counterparts.

    IBM and FX Giant CLS Team Up to Launch Blockchain App Store for Banks
    https://www.coindesk.com/ibm-barclays-and-citi-team-up-to-launch-blockchain-app-store-for-banks/

    Reply
  31. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Traders Are Talking Up Cryptocurrencies, Then Dumping Them, Costing Others Millions
    https://news.slashdot.org/story/18/08/05/2046237/traders-are-talking-up-cryptocurrencies-then-dumping-them-costing-others-millions?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Slashdot%2Fslashdot%2Fto+%28%28Title%29Slashdot+%28rdf%29%29

    Dozens of trading groups are manipulating the price of cryptocurrencies on some of the largest online exchanges, generating at least $825 million in trading activity over the past six months — and hundreds of millions in losses for those caught on the wrong side, according to a Wall Street Journal analysis.

    A pump-and-dump scheme is one of the oldest types of market fraud: Traders talk up the price of an asset before dumping it for a profit and leaving fooled investors with shrunken shares.

    https://www.wsj.com/graphics/cryptocurrency-schemes-generate-big-coin/

    Reply
  32. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Dean Takahashi / VentureBeat:
    Hedera Hashgraph raises $100M via private ICO to build what it claims will be much faster and more secure distributed ledger technology than current blockchains — Move over blockchain. Hedera Hashgraph has raised $100 million via a future token sale from institutional investors in a bid …

    Hedera Hashgraph raises $100 million for fast and secure blockchain alternative
    https://venturebeat.com/2018/08/01/hedera-hashgraph-raises-100-million-for-fast-and-secure-blockchain-alternative/

    Move over blockchain. Hedera Hashgraph has raised $100 million via a future token sale from institutional investors as it seeks to create a new commerce network based on its “hashgraph consensus” technology. That’s a fancy term for a new distributed public ledger that the company says can function much faster, more securely, and at a larger scale than current blockchain technologies.

    The Dallas, Texas-based company will use the money from its public sale of future tokens to accelerate development of key services to be provided by Hedera. The company says the amount of money raised shows how much potential it has to change the internet as we know it and overcome the obstacles that have stopped cryptocurrency and blockchain from disrupting the world’s financial systems.

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  33. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Soundcloud on the blockchain? Audius raises $5.5M to decentralize music
    https://techcrunch.com/2018/08/08/audius/

    Soundcloud on the blockchain? Audius raises $5.5M to decentralize music
    Josh Constine
    @joshconstine / 56 minutes ago

    Audius Blockchain Music
    Audius wants to cut the middlemen out music streaming so artists get paid their fair share. Coming out of stealth today led by serial entrepreneur and DJ Ranidu Lankage, Audius is building a blockchain-based alternative to Spotify or SoundCloud.

    Users will pay for Audius tokens or earn them by listening to ads. Their wallet will then pay out a fraction of a cent per song to stream from decentralized storage across the network, with artists receiving roughly 85 percent — compared to roughly 70 percent on the leading streaming apps. The rest goes to compensating whoever is hosting that song, as well as developers of listening software clients, one of which will be built by Audius.

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  34. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Ethereum’s falling price splits the crypto community
    https://techcrunch.com/2018/08/13/ethereums-falling-price-splits-the-crypto-community/?utm_source=tcfbpage&sr_share=facebook

    Crypto bloodbaths have become fairly common in 2018 — mainly because of the insane growth in 2017

    this is a major test for Ether — the token associated with the Ethereum Foundation that is the second largest cryptocurrency by volume — has been on a downward spiral with little sign of change.

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    Crypto bloodbaths have become fairly common in 2018 — mainly because of the insane growth in 2017 — but we’ve not covered them all because they are so numerous and often include so-called ‘flash crashes’ or small drops, but the fall happening today is worth noting for several wider reasons.

    Primarily that’s because this is a major test for Ether — the token associated with the Ethereum Foundation that is the second largest cryptocurrency by volume — has been on a downward spiral with little sign of change.

    Ether, which is the preferred platform of choice for most developers building on the blockchain, is down nearly 17 percent over the past day. That’s erased billions of dollars in paper (crypto) value as the bear market for cryptocurrencies continues to pull markets south.

    The drop also marks the first time ever that the price of an Ether has fallen below its valuation over one year: one Ether is worth $266 right now at the time of writing, versus $304 on August 14 2017.

    Just looking at Coinmarketcap.com this morning, all but two of the top 100 tokens are down over the last 24 hours with many losing 10-25 percent of their value over the past day. Bitcoin, too, has dropped below $6,000, having topped $8,000 for a time last month.

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  35. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Coinbase acquires Distributed Systems to build ‘Login with Coinbase’
    https://techcrunch.com/2018/08/15/login-with-coinbase/

    Coinbase wants to be Facebook Connect for crypto. The blockchain giant plans to develop “Login with Coinbase” or a similar identity platform for decentralized app developers to make it much easier for users to sign up and connect their crypto wallets. To fuel that platform, today Coinbase announced it has acquired Distributed Systems, a startup founded in 2015 that was building an identity standard for dApps called the Clear Protocol.

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  36. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Data centers used for bitcoin mining
    https://www.csemag.com/single-article/data-centers-used-for-bitcoin-mining/d610d7308374bde1b8b2c6fff8564134.html?OCVALIDATE=

    Data centers used for bitcoin mining have significant differences from their commercial data center counterparts.

    Defining bitcoin mining and mining data centers

    At a high level, the secure hash algorithm (SHA) is a function that is used to validate bitcoin transactions and ensure the security for the bitcoin network’s public ledger, also known as the blockchain. The speed at which bitcoins are mined is measured in hashes per second. The servers used in mining (referred to as “miners” or “mining servers”) bundle recent bitcoin transactions into “blocks,” then work to solve cryptographic problems to help validate each block, making sure the ledger entries are accurate. These cryptographic problems are where the mining servers and data centers come into play. Solving these problems requires heavy-duty computational power operating for long periods of time.

    The bitcoin network pays bitcoin miners for their time, effort, and financial investment by releasing bitcoins to those who contribute the needed computational power to validate the transactions. The greater computational power a miner has, the greater the portion of compensation—this is the overarching driver for why individuals and corporations are building megawatt bitcoin mining data centers, either to be used by themselves or for paying customers who then have access to mining servers without having to make major capital investments in information technology (IT) and facilities. In either scenario, minimizing first costs and ongoing energy costs is critical to maximizing return on investment (ROI).

    Fundamentally, a mining data center shares the same basic design and operational principles as other types of data centers: Power is brought to the building and distributed to the equipment, air-distribution systems maintain the required environmental conditions, and the building provides protection from outside conditions and security from external threats. Although on a deeper level, there are significant differences to data centers that are used for mining than their commercial data center counterparts. This divergence is readily seen in the examination of the following categories:

    Impacts of mining server design
    Data center structure and envelope
    Cooling and air distribution
    Energy use and efficiency.

    Analyzing the data on the growth of bitcoin from 2014 to 2018 indicates a tremendous growth in mining activities. This is an important indicator of energy use linked to mining operations. The growth of mining (and energy use) has been extremely strong from 2014 to 2018, and trend analyses show a continued positive, aggressive growth.

    Mining server design

    Two major considerations when investing in mining servers is the first-cost per hash and the electrical efficiency stated in watts per hash. Higher-performing computers have higher hash rates, providing greater computational power to the mining operation. In contrast to enterprise servers, miners are designed to accomplish only one task-mining. Currently, a common type of architecture used for mining servers is based on the application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) chips, often referred to as system on a chip (SoC).

    When developing a cooling system strategy, an important consideration is that miners can operate with inlet conditions of 80 to 90°F and10% to 80% non-condensing relative humidity. A powerful mining server can have an electrical demand of 1,400 W or more, dissipating the equivalent quantity of heat to the data center. To minimize the possibility of server failure due to high interior temperatures, some of the server manufacturers include a controller that varies the speed of the fan in the server, the voltage, and clock speed of the machine based on the temperature. Additionally, the larger cross-sectional area of the miner allows for better airflow across the ASIC chips, enabling effective heat dissipation. Being able to take advantage of these higher operating temperatures, which can reduce or eliminate the requirements of the cooling system, is a central organizing principle for mining data centers. The extent of the reduction of cooling equipment is dependent on the size, location, and physical characteristic of the data center building.

    Typically, mining data centers use buildings that are constructed of lightweight materials-including the exterior walls, roof, and windows—such as a storage facility or warehouse. This construction is akin to a Level 1 basic facility as defined in the Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA) 942 Standard. A Level 1 basic facility has the least resiliency of the four levels in terms of systems reliability, handling extreme weather events, security, and many other criteria.

    A Level 1 basic facility data center will have little or no redundancy in the cooling systems. Lower reliability systems do not use redundant equipment, such as pumps, chillers, and air-handling equipment. In this scenario, mechanical rooms are smaller because there is less equipment. This “found” space will be used for mining servers, which is advantageous for the mining operation but increases the required power and cooling capacity.

    Cooling and air distribution

    In a traditional data center, the servers are mounted in a cabinet or rack that secures the server in place, allows for cable management, and aids in airflow. In a mining data center, the servers are mounted on industrial shelving units, allowing for quick replacement in case of server failure. This shelving arrangement offers cost advantages for procuring the products and labor to install the shelving.

    One of the advantages of using the industrial-type shelving to hold the computers is the openness of the installation. The miners are placed on the shelving in a manner that permits the air to flow above, below, and on both sides. In this arrangement, there is no formal airflow management, such as a hot-aisle/cold-aisle configuration; the air temperature entering the servers is nonhomogeneous and will vary greatly.

    In data centers, the cooling systems are among the most expensive and energy-hungry (behind the servers). Since this is the case, reducing or eliminating components like chillers, cooling towers, pumps, piping, and ductwork will reduce or eliminate most of the cooling system. Reducing the use or eliminating these systems will also address the first-cost and energy-cost issues. Since the primary job of the cooling system is to keep the IT equipment operating at a prescribed temperature and moisture level, easing the indoor environmental requirements of the servers (for example, allowing them to operate at a higher internal temperatures) will reduce energy consumption and, in some cases, reduce the size of the cooling systems.

    As previously mentioned, the mining servers can operate with air temperatures ranging from 80 to 90°F and beyond. If the outdoor air is approximately equal to the maximum allowable server temperature, no mechanical cooling is required. Therefore, the data center’s geographic location and the server’s maximum operating temperature must be taken into consideration in tandem; cooler locations and hotter server operating temperatures will have the lowest energy use, while the hottest locations and lowest server temperatures will use the most energy

    Energy efficiency for mining operations

    Figure 3: Performing lifecycle cost analysis for different cost and/or energy reduction strategies produces valuable data as to which strategy will yield the greatest TCO reduction compared to the base case. Courtesy: Bill KosikEnergy use is a primary concern for mining operations. If operating costs are higher than what is needed for a favorable financial return on the mining operation, the business model will be a non-starter.

    Unlike enterprise servers where it is difficult (if not impossible) to draw a one-to-one correlation between server energy use and financial return, this correlation is readily obtainable from mining operations.

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  37. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Blockchain Data Network Could Boost Manufacturing
    https://www.medicaldesignbriefs.com/component/content/article/mdb/insider/32791?utm_source=TBnewsletter&utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=20180816_Medical_MM_Newsletter&eid=376641819&bid=2208536

    Researchers are proposing the creation of a public, open-source network that uses blockchains — the technology behind cryptocurrencies — to share verifiable manufacturing data. The system could be used as a peer-to-peer network that allows companies to find small- and medium-sized manufacturers that are capable of producing specific components on a reliable basis.

    Their approach, called FabRec, would allow companies to automatically report about their manufacturing activities: which machines are being used, what materials they are working with, raw material inventory levels, whether the work is being completed on time, and so oN.

    “Because these updates are automated, users can be fairly certain that the information is accurate,”

    To demonstrate the viability of the concept, the researchers created a publicly-accessible, prototype network that currently accepts input from a handful of machines. The network shows that the concept is viable, but the next step would be to establish agreed-upon protocols with participating manufacturers

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