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Category: Markethive

Top 10 Alternatives to Bitcoin

top 10 alteratives to Bitcoin

Top 10 Altenatives to Bitcoin

Blockchain currency is revolutionizing money. Since Satoshi Nakamoto unveiled his cryptocurrency in 2008, we’ve witnessed a proliferation of digital cash companies and codebases. Utilizing his public, distributed ledger, dozens of promising currencies have emerged. Only a select few have proven themselves as true contenders to Bitcoin, however.

Here are the top 10 altcoins on CoinMarketCap (note that the list is changing constantly, especially in the tail part, with other altcoins like MaidSafeCoin, Golem and Augur playing musical chairs with others):

ETHEREUM

J.P Morgan Chase, Microsoft and Intel allied in order to create the fiercest rival to Bitcoin in circulation today: Ethereum. The main purpose of the endeavor was to program binding agreements into the Blockchain itself. This incarnated into the now-popular smart contract feature.

Interestingly, Ethereum is not just a currency. It’s a Blockchain platform powered by the Ether cryptocurrency. The New York Times describes the technology as “a single shared computer that is run by the network of users and on which resources are parceled out and paid for by Ether.”

RIPPLE

Ripple attracted a great deal of venture capital during its inception. The Google-backed altcoin startup managed to pull in upwards of $50 mln from banking institutions, gathering an impressive $90 mln in total funding. Ripple is unique in that it allows for transacting with any unit of value, from fiat currency to frequent flier miles.

“Ripple provides global financial settlement solutions to enable the world to exchange value like it already exchanges information giving rise to an Internet of Value (IoV). Ripple solutions lower the total cost of settlement by enabling banks to transact directly, instantly and with certainty of settlement,” reads the company’s copy on their official website.

Initially a middling contender, Ripple has gained momentum in the cryptocurrency market, seeing a marked surge earlier this year. In fact, Ripple experienced a 100 percent increase in value within a 24-hour period in late March.

LITECOIN

Former Google engineer Charles Lee created this altcoin in an effort to improve upon Bitcoin. Namely, the speed to generate a new block is improved dramatically. Transactions are much faster. By the same token, however, this speed makes Litecoin’s Blockchain larger and more prone to producing orphaned blocks.

DASH

Dash, a combination of the words “digital” and “cash,” is the Internet’s cash-in-hand. Dash is quick. Its transactions are instant. “Your time is valuable. InstantSend payments confirm in less than a second,” Dash claims. By comparison, Bitcoin’s transactions can take up to an hour to process.

GPU/CPU mining is no longer cost effective. In order to mine, you’ll need specific hardware, computers known as ASICs to complete Dash’s proof-of-work puzzles.

NEM

NEM is written in Java; built on an entirely new codebase separate and apart from Bitcoin’s open-source code. There are a few other intriguing differences from Bitcoin as well. In NEM, you harvest rather than mine. It’s essentially the same as mining in Bitcoin, only that multiple people profit — albeit in much smaller quantities — from a generated block.

NEM introduced the proof-of-importance algorithm to the digital ledger. A user’s wealth and number of transactions are used to timestamp transactions.

NEM has seen rapid growth in its valuation since the beginning of 2017 as the altcoin is currently being embraced in Japan.

ETHEREUM CLASSIC

A parallel Ethereum platform exists and sustains a sizeable usership with a market cap hovering just below $430 mln.

Why do two versions of the same platform exist?

The Ethereum community fractured when a disagreement over how a technically legal theft of funds should be handled. The majority of users wished to change Ethereum’s code in order to get the lost funds back. A minority believed that Ethereum should not be tampered with or altered by third parties. Even in cases of users exploiting the smart contract feature to trick others, the Blockchain must remain “immutable.” Thus, the minority created the Classic version of Ethereum, which still survives and thrives.

MONERO

Monero is geared toward those who desire greater anonymity. The cryptocurrency allows you to “send and receive funds without your transactions being publically visible on the Blockchain.” Transactions are completely untraceable due to Monero’s leveraging of ring signatures. Unfortunately, because of Monero’s emphasis on privacy, it has seen adoption by the darknet and other criminal organizations.

ZCASH

Zcash, like Monero, offers greater privacy to users. Unlike Monero, transactions are shielded rather than made completely private. Meaning, the details of the transaction itself, such as the users involved and the amount traded, are hidden. Zcash does this by using a “zero-knowledge” proof that allows for parties to exchange funds without revealing each other’s identity.

DECRED

Decred’s primary aim is to focus on “community input, open governance and sustainable funding and development.” The currency melds proof-of-work and proof-of-stake mining algorithms to ensure a minority of users do not own the majority of the funds and that decisions are led by the community rather than a handful of developers or early investors.

PIVX

PIVX stands for Private Instant Verified Transactions. Another open-source decentralized Blockchain currency, it is built upon Bitcoin Core. Like Zcash and Monero, PIVX boasts its heightened privacy and security.

“We believe that you have the right to exchange privately and securely, without interference from corporatocracy pressures, governmental influences, prying eyes, and nefarious individuals and movements,” PIVX contends.

PIVX is highly volatile, experiencing massive spikes in trading volume and valuation as of March of this year. Again, because of the currency’s emphasis on privacy, PIVX is susceptible to criminal activities.

Cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin and the altcoins it has spawned, may bring about a new global economy. They allow us to transact in a peer-to-peer fashion, without third-party bodies governing us. Bitcoin introduced the Blockchain, but other developers are quickly improving upon Nakamoto’s idea. Some currencies have focused on speed, as is the case with both Ripple and Litecoin. Others have honed in on privacy, currencies like Zcash going so far as making all transactions private and untraceable. Each altcoin comes with its own strengths and weakness. Surely, we’ll discover more as time goes on. For now, these 10 currencies are at the top. Their fate could turn, however, at a flip of a coin.

 

David Ogden
Entrepreneur

 

Source: cointelegraph.com

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member

Better Safe Than Sorry: Simple Effective Ways to Secure Your Cryptocoins

Better Safe Than Sorry:
Simple Effective Ways to Secure
Your Cryptocoins

  

Cryptocurrency is perhaps the safest instrument to transfer

value between anonymous parties. But storing and trading cryptocurrency can be a risky affair. As a digital crypto-asset, it does not have to worry about the many usual issues vexing paper money but faces challenges unique to fintech industry.

Storage

The most popular way of storing crypto coins is a software wallet. Digital wallets are easy to use and practical but how secure are they? If your hard-earned crypto coins are stored on your PC, then your assets are only as secure as your computer itself. Basically, protecting your software wallet is no different from safeguarding any sensitive data on your PC. You should be a bit extra paranoid when surfing the net and never store your passwords in an unencrypted file on the same machine as your wallets. Ideally, you should store your passwords offline or not store them at all (brain-wallets!) and install your wallets on a device you do not use for day-to-day browsing and downloading.

Another popular solution is Linux operating system, which is believed to be almost impervious to hackers and viruses. You don’t even have to install Linux instead of Windows, it can be booted on your PC when necessary from a USB stick. Then there is cold storage. Cold storage takes security up a few notches and basically means keeping your altcoins in an offline wallet, effectively restricting any attempts of unauthorized access to it. Cold storage wallet is usually created on a device that is never connected to the Internet, like an old offline laptop or a USB stick. Not many people know that a cold wallet can not only be maintained offline but can even be created offline. You do not need to connect the device to the Internet to install a wallet, generate keys and send the coins. Such wallets are perhaps the safest ones.

As far as offline wallets go, hardware wallets are the most convenient and secure solution. Hardware wallets are portable devices designed specifically for storing cryptocurrency. Basically, they are USB sticks with simple and secure software and several layers of cryptographic protection. Now cold storage is great for storing your assets, but sooner or later you will need to move your coins online and that is when you face some completely different security issues.

Trading and purchasing

Emerging crypto-shopping requires us to find a suitable way of keeping assets online and easily accessible. Many users create a “hot wallet” to take care of routine day to day transactions and a “cold wallet” to store the bulk of their assets, only occasionally accessing it. This approach was also adopted by many exchange websites. Even if you do not consider yourself to be a crypto-trader, at times you will need to exchange your cryptocurrency and dealing with exchanges is almost unavoidable.

Online wallets, processing systems, and exchanges all have their security issues. Professionals believe that there are a few security measures crypto-traders should be aware of when choosing what online services to use, but also to remember that certain user end measures are absolutely necessary and usually more reliable in the long run.

Svetlana Geller, CEO, says:

“Perceived safety and objective safety are two completely different beasts. Perceived safety can be reached by numerous account protection mechanisms. But in reality, this will mostly just hinder the account owner’s user experience. I believe google authenticator with just one IP in its whitelist (the VPN you use to access the exchange) will be enough. With this sort of protection, in place, your account will only be hacked if the perpetrator has full access to your PC and smartphone, which should be hard enough for an Internet-based criminal. You can slap 10 more protections on top of that but none will be nearly as effective.”

And of course, pay attention to your email’s security. “Always use unique passwords, protect your email with multi-factor authentication and so on, you know the drill”, Geller continues. “90 percent of all hacks are conducted via accessing your email and changing email in your account or attempting to recover your password. Also mind your smartphone, especially if it's Android with google authenticator installed. Ideally, you should buy a cheap smartphone specifically to be used for your financial activities and restrict your Google authenticator for exchanges to it. These two simple tricks will almost completely safeguard your assets from hacker attacks.”

Exchanges

Whether you frequently trade on the exchange or simply store some of your assets there to diversify risks, it is paramount to choose an exchange that will not only be convenient but also reliable and secure. Exchanges, mostly being centralized entities, can get hacked. And often are. Moreover, they tend to sometimes dissolve into thin air along with the clients’ assets. Many times we have seen crypto-exchanges evaporating or crumbling in a matter of days. There were signs of course, but inexperienced users did not read them.

To name a few examples, the abrupt resignation of William Dennis Atwood, the sole director of MyCoin, should perhaps have sounded some alarms but in fact, it went largely unnoticed by the community. A month later the notorious Hong Kong exchange collapsed leaving behind many disgruntled users. The downfall of Cryptsy was perhaps even more predictable. For years this exchange experienced numerous technical issues and introduced questionable administration policies. Early in 2016, it proclaimed bankruptcy as a result of the hacker attack that robbed it of $7.5 mln. The court case that followed has shown that the owner has probably funneled exchange’s funds to his personal accounts too.

So what are the dark omens traders should be on the lookout for? Apparently, the crypto world is all about trust and reputation so industry celebrities and personalities with good karma in the community disengaging themselves from a project should be an alarming sign. Frequent technical issues and fishy policies are another obvious one. But as professionals say, there are just too many ways to spot a shady exchange so keep your eyes peeled for anything that seems out of place.

Geller explains:

“There are just too many ways to spot a sketchy exchange given some of them employ very unsophisticated schemes. For example, an exchange suddenly crashes during intensive BTC price fluctuations and when it’s back up clients’ orders are mysteriously fulfilled at a disadvantageous price.”

According to Geller, Bitcoin withdrawal issues are always a huge red flag too. Altcoins might get stuck for months due to faulty nodes so their mobility is really not a relevant factor, but bitcoin’s low mobility is definitely a bad sign.

She says:

"‘Transparency is not always a clear sign. There has been quite a few fairly transparent exchanges that disappeared with clients’ money. On the other hand, there are numerous non-transparent exchanges that are well-respected and reliable, like BTC-e."

Slow response to user tickets is another sign, which while not being absolutely certain should still raise some alarms if frequent enough.” Another tell-tale sign of a shady exchange is a seemingly uncontrolled influx of highly questionable altcoins. Some exchanges even get involved in ICOs and initial emission. And every time a new coin enters such exchange there will be pump-and-dump cycles which will most likely rip a trader off unless he belongs to an insider group. Exchanges with heaps of dead coins on their roster should be avoided unless you absolutely know what you’re doing. Finally, don’t put all your eggs in one basket. Sometimes bad things just happen out of the blue but at least you will be able to greatly decrease your risks by diversifying them.

Chuck Reynolds
Contributor

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member

Ripple Rising: Centralized Cryptocurrency Sees 30% Gain in One Day

Ripple Rising:
Centralized Cryptocurrency
Sees 30% Gain in One Day

Bank-friendly Ripple (XRP) still exists, to the surprise of many, the author included. Not only that, but it has continued its apparent strategic partnership initiative, partnering with Asian and Australian banks in conjunction with its stated goal of acting as a sort of Paypal mechanism for large interbank transfers. Four short weeks ago, the coin was sitting around a penny a pop. But with more enthusiasm building among traders, it has steadily risen, and today saw a spike of over 30%, rounding out just under 5 cents each.

Ripple has been getting a ton of attention

as of late, and not the negative kind like it once received for managing to get a $700,000 fine from the federal government and thereby underscoring the risk of having a known entity backing a cryptocurrency. Just a couple of examples of this are recent video in Bloomberg News and inclusion in a Bank of England program. Skepticism among more traditional cryptocurrency people still thrives. The centralization aspect and the inherent issue of being able to identify coin users as well as reverse transactions certainly is a specter of wrongdoing for many of us. But as one writer put it, “one man’s sh**coin is another man’s treasure.”

The fact that the Ripple project has continued to develop its platform and strategic partnerships continued to bring on talent, and continued to grow its community means that they are at least serious, not scammers looking for a quick buck. The “Paypal of banks” aspect is important, and paralysis in the Bitcoin community over a simple issue certainly gives any bank pause when it comes to partnering with cryptocurrencies. A recent report from IBM shows that over 90% of banks are investing in some form of blockchain technology.

Another factor of improvement for Ripple is the unofficial Swiss sector of its network. Something called PathShuffle has been introduced which aims to anonymize transactions in the same way that they are on the likes of the DASH network. Blockchain and cryptocurrencies are both very young technologies, and the future is wide open. The first mover, Bitcoin, continues to have its share of problems, and as its drama continues it becomes easier and easier to envision a future where alternatives actually stand a fighting chance. The recent, impressive success of Ethereum is one example, along with  DASH, and perhaps Ripple will be up there with them, centralized though it is, serving its own corner of the market.

Chuck Reynolds
Contributor

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member

Cryptocurrency Exchange Review – Bithumb

Cryptocurrency Exchange Review — Bithumb

 

The Bithumb Exchange in a Nutshell

It is always good to learn certain countries have more exchanges than most people would give them credit for. Korea is not necessarily a region people would associate with cryptocurrency exchanges, even though there are quite a few of them active in the country. One of those platforms goes by the name of Bithumb, a platform providing Bitcoin and Ethereum trading options. As one would come to expect from a Korean cryptocurrency exchange, the platform only provides exchange appears against the Korean Won. This applies to both Bitcoin and Ethereum for the time being. Unfortunately, there is no BTC/ETH trading pair, although it is possible that may be added in the future. Then again, providing a fiat-to-crypto gateway is a good place to start as an exchange.

Based on the statistics provided by Coinmarketcap, Bithumb is generating a lot of 24-hour volume for both Bitcoin and Ethereum. To be more specific, Bithumb generated over US$44.29m worth of trading volume for the ETH/KRW pair. Additionally, the platform saw US$13.46m worth of trading volume for the BTC/KRW trading pair. Both are quite impressive numbers for an exchange a lot of people have never heard of, that much is certain. If Bithumb can keep these numbers up, they will quickly become one of the largest Asian cryptocurrency exchanges.

It is also worth mentioning Bithumb provides users with an option to buy bitcoin gift vouchers. These vouchers are denominated in the equivalent value based on the current Korean won value. It appears the minimum value for such a card can be 10,000 KOW, which translates to a value of US$8.78. A very odd number, although it will make a lot of sense for the company. Moreover, Bithumb will also purchase existing gift vouchers from customers and converts this into an appropriate bitcoin value.

Looking at the company information posted on the website, it appears the company is run by BTC Korea.com Co. Ltd. This company operates a bitcoin trading platform — this is Bithumb, evidently — headquartered in South Korea. It is difficult to find information about the people working for the company, though, as Bloomberg has no executive or board member information on their website. That is not necessarily something to be concerned about, although it is something the parent company may want to look into sooner rather than later. All things considered, Bithumb seems to be on its way to becoming a major cryptocurrency exchange in the Asian region. Although there is little information to be found about the platform, the company seems to be doing well so far. The high trading volume may raise some questions from industry experts, though. Always do your own research before trusting an exchange with your funds.

Chuck Reynolds
Contributor

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member

OneGram & Dubai Trading Platform In $0.5Bn ‘Gold-Backed’ Cryptocurrency Venture

OneGram & Dubai Trading Platform
In $0.5Bn 'Gold-Backed'
Cryptocurrency Venture

  

Islamic financial services and technology company

OneGram is partnering with GoldGuard, a Dubai-based online gold trading platform, that is building one of worlds largest gold vaults inside the Dubai Airport Free Zone, to create the first completely “gold-backed digital currency” globally. Each token represents a gram of gold and redeemable. At the company is fully compliant with Islamic finance requirements. Advisers listed include amongst others Sheikh Abdulkader Amor, CEO of Al Maali Consulting Group and an Islamic financial adviser, Adam Richard, CEO of Volt Markets, and founder of the Houston Bitcoin Meetup.

Currently the Islamic finance sector is responsible for managing around 1% of global GDP and growing at nearly 20% per year. With there being an estimated 1.8 billion (bn) Muslims worldwide according to a study in 2015 — equating to around a quarter of the global population of c.7.5bn today — OneGram is seen as a “Sharia-compliant method” for them to keep gold in a digital format that is both secure and digitally transferable, including across borders.

And, given that the number of Muslims in the world is expected to grow to 2.2bn by 2030, the new joint venture between OneGram and GoldGuard was being outlined today at The Ritz-Carlton, Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), in terms of its impact on “opening the doors for cryptocurrency trading to the Islamic world.”

Crowdsale Campaign

A maximum total of 12,400,786 OneGramCoin tokens (OGC) will be sold in OneGram’s upcoming initial coin offering (ICO) on May 21, with accounts able to be opened next week on May 8 when the gold can be purchased. At the current gold spot price, a sold out crowdsale would raise over $554 million (m), which would make it the largest cryptocurrency crowdsale goal in history.

Ibrahim Mohammed, the CEO of OneGram, commenting from Dubai said: “In recent years, the Middle East has seen incredible growth in fintech innovations including digital tokens and smart contracts.” He added: “With OneGram we are providing an opportunity for investors who care about Islamic financial markets and the security of commodity-backed investments to benefit from rapid technological advances in the blockchain industry.”

Islamic Markets & Cryptocurrency

Existing cryptocurrencies it should be noted have not been designed with Islamic markets in mind. Despite Muslims making up around 25% of the global population today, many Muslims simply cannot use cryptocurrencies due to their restricted legal status and high barriers to entry in many countries in the Islamic world.

According to OneGram, it aims to solve these issues by using blockchain technology to create a “new kind of cryptocurrency”, where each coin is backed by one gram of gold at launch. In terms of the joint venture, the team at OneGram team will manage the OGC protocol while GoldGuard will run the vault for physical gold.

Each transaction of OGC generates a small transaction fee, which is reinvested in more gold (net of administration costs), and thereby increases the amount of gold that backs each OneGram. Therefore, according to the pitch, each OGC increases in real value over time, and is touted as “making OneGram unique among cryptocurrencies.”

Gold Investments & Sharia Law

Historically gold investing has been problematic under Sharia law. While there is currently limited guidance for gold coins and bars, there is virtually no guidance on gold elsewhere in the financial sector. In most cases, trading gold futures contracts is forbidden by Islamic law as gold futures contracts are not backed by physical gold and one can end up paying or receiving interest on your trading account. The upshot is that most people who wanted to buy gold as an investment have purchased gold in its physical form through for example coins or jewelry

New Standard

Things are changing though. Back in December 2016, the Sharia Gold Standard, which OneGram complies with, was introduced by the Accounting and Auditing Organization for Islamic Financial Institutions (AAOIFI), the World Gold Council and Amanie Advisors. As a result of this new standard, Muslim investors will now be able to take advantage of an increasing range of gold-backed investment opportunities, which hitherto had been non-compliant.

OneGram's ICO

The OneGram ICO will take place on the GoldGuard gold exchange, which trades and regulates precious metals, and is licensed by the Dubai Airport Free Zone (DAFZ) in the United Emirates (UAE), and one of the fast growing Free Zones in the region. The DAFZ is the governing body, which administers trade licenses and visas to international companies wanting to do business from Dubai within the Freezone. In order for investors to participate in the ICO, the initial step is to register with GoldGuard and purchase gold at live spot rates. Then the gold can be redeemed for OGC for a 10% premium.

This premium is expected as by purchasing OGC, the investor is not only purchasing an asset that offers the spot value of gold but also the future value of additional gold to be purchased from transaction fees. The ICO in OGC tokens will end when all coins are sold or after a maximum period of 120 days. If all the tokens do not sell out, there will be a new total supply of OGC equal to the amount of OGC sold in the ICO. It understood that subsequent to that no more coins will ever be issued.

At any given moment, an investor in these tokens is able to see the amount of gold backing their coin in the official OneGram wallet app and through the GoldGuard website. Your coins for gold or equivalent fiat currency can be redeemed through GoldGuard’s platform. Following the ICO, OneGram Coins can be bought and sold through any cryptocurrency exchange that lists OGC.

The Roadmap

According to OneGram’s roadmap, next month on June 30 the test network for OGC transactions is slated for launch. Following that in early July the intention is to launch multiple implementations of OneGramCoin block explorers, being described “with complete REST and WebSocket API’s, allowing our users insight into transactions propagated on the blockchain.” On August 7, the main network for OGC transactions is set to be launched, before OGCs will be distributed to investors in the ICO and listed on popular crypto exchanges on August 15.

Ibrahim Mohammed, CEO, OneGram, along with GoldGuard and leading Islamic finance scholars including Sheikh Abdelkader Amor were speaking today at a press conference hosted at The Ritz-Carlton, DIFC, to highlight the joint venture. Follow Roger, who has penned various investment stories over the years, on Twitter, LinkedIn, ForbesGoogle+. He is involved with the Campaign For Fair Finance in the UK.

Chuck Reynolds
Contributor

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member

Users of ‘Btc-e’ cryptocurrency exchange reporting spike in email phishing attempts

Users of 'Btc-e' cryptocurrency exchange reporting spike in email phishing attempts

   Bitcoin exchange 'Btc-e' was previously targeted by hackers in 2014iStock

Users of a popular cryptocurrency exchange called Btc-e are reporting a significant spike in email phishing attempts, a potential harbinger of a fresh spam or malware campaign being launched in an attempt to defraud the bitcoin community. The reports emerged this week (2 May) on the bitcoin sections of Reddit and Twitter, with many recipients posting images of the spam that appears to currently be in circulation.

The attacker is luring victims by asking them to "review attached Btc-e codes" and claiming they only have a matter of hours to redeem them. The emails contain a password and a Microsoft Word document. Sender names vary, with some to date including Pierce Cynthia and Parsons Dillon. One Reddit user wrote: "In the word document it claims to be an encrypted document (really just an image). To decrypt it you have to enter the code from the email. Once you do that it downloads a program that encrypts your whole computer."

Another claimed: "I got the same thing. Seems like btc-e.com has had a breach of their account details. [The attacker] had my email and username, passwords may have been taken too but likely hashed so it may be worth changing your password just to be on the safe side." According to one Twitter user with name "GasGeverij" — a self-described penetration tester — the slew of fraudulent emails may be part of a "well-organised spam campaign leveraging [the] new Office vulnerability bypassing Gmail and Yahoo filters". This is in reference to recent reports from cybersecurity firms McAfee and FireEye, which discovered a bug in Word that hackers could exploit by using attached documents to spread malware and exploit kits. Before a patch was released it put "millions of users" at risk.

Chuck Reynolds
Contributor

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member

Blockchain firm nChain appoints Jon Matonis as Vice President of Corporate Strategy

Blockchain firm nChain appoints Jon Matonis as Vice President of Corporate Strategy

  

Bitcoin Foundation Executive Director Jon Matonis has joined blockchain company nChain

as the new Vice President of Corporate Strategy. Matonis will be supporting nChain's business growth by developing commercial relationships, and evaluating opportunities for strategic investments and acquisitions, the release said. In this position, he will also continue providing thought leadership on blockchain technology. Recognized as a leading bitcoin researcher, Matonis is a non-executive board director for various companies in the digital currency space.

“Jon was immediately attractive to nChain. During his notable career, he has consistently led the integration of financial services and cryptography,” Arthur Davis, Director of nChain Holdings Limited, commented. “Jon's philosophy for the Bitcoin protocol and the network is fully in line with nChain's vision of on-chain scalability with decentralization, advanced native scripting for the construction of smart contracts, and a dedicated move away from monolithic software. We are excited to have Jon's deep industry experience on our team, and look forward to working with him to achieve our vision for the Bitcoin blockchain.”

Being the founding director of the Bitcoin Foundation, Matonis served as the industry's first nonprofit trade association. He also held senior roles with the Sumitomo Bank, VISA International, VeriSign, and Hushmail. Matonis created first and leading general price index for bitcoin ‘the Bitcoin Price Index (BPI)’ and enlisted seven regional chapter offices to the Bitcoin Foundation from countries such as France, Germany, and Bangladesh. “The resources and funding in place at nChain provide a unique opportunity to reshape the existing landscape of Bitcoin protocol influencers. I am excited to work with nChain to support the growth of the blockchain ecosystem for everyone's benefit,” Matonis said, accepting the new management position at nChain.

Chuck Reynolds
Contributor

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member

Venture capital 3.0: The initial coin offering explained

Venture capital 3.0:
The initial coin offering explained

Initial coin offerings are cutting out the venture capital middlemen to finance blockchain-powered software   

The venture capital community thrives on disruption.

So what happens when the tables are turned and the medicine bottle has their name on it? There's a new kid riding onto the financing block — riding roughshod across an unregulated landscape. Welcome to the world of the initial coin offering (ICO). An ICO is a hybrid: part crowdfunding, part software token, part speculation. In simple terms, an ICO is often described, somewhat inaccurately, as an IPO for cryptocurrencies.

How it works

– A tech start-up team creates an ICO using a blockchain-enabled software platform, usually open sourced.

– The platform is powered by cryptography-based software tokens — called cryptocurrencies.

– The team produces a white paper to describe its idea in greater technical depth for the cryptocurrency community to review, often supported by a prototype.

– The team then crowdfunds the building of its platform by offering the early usage of the software token — often at a discount — with these tokens usually paid for in bitcoins.

– Two Australian blockchain-powered platforms, Incent and Chronosbank, have raised more than $1 million and $7 million respectively in this way in the past six months — no venture capital firm required.

Crowdfunding vs ICO

While initial coin offerings may sound similar to a Kickstarter campaign, they do have a speculative twist. Once an ICO is completed, the stronger platforms and cryptocurrencies begin to develop material value that can be traded. Globally, there are more than 40 cryptocurrency exchanges, Poloniex.com being the largest exchange in the US. Their role is to establish a secondary market where major cryptocurrencies can be exchanged for bitcoins in an open marketplace, in a similar way to foreign exchange markets.

As a result, most cryptocurrencies have a market value that can be traded in line with the demand and supply of the cryptocurrency powering the new software platform being developed.Cryptocurrencies on the exchanges are subject to the same dynamics as equities and forex — where the core fundamentals of the cryptocurrency drive the underlying demand and the day-to-day trading actions determine its price. The total value of the global cryptocurrency markets is currently more than $US38 billion ($50 billion), with bitcoins representing the majority of that.

Powering smart contracts

Cryptocurrency's first major crowdsale was that of Ethereum in late 2014. The Ethereum software platform enables "smart contracts" to run. For example, money could be programmed to be automatically transferred once a container ship hits a certain longitude and latitude to confirm it is in Australian waters. Anyone who runs a smart contract on the Ethereum platform pays a small cryptocurrency fee to run that contract. Ethereum's initial crowdsale raised about $US18 million, although its current market capitalisation as reflected by the Ethereum price on the crytpocurrency exchanges is more than $US4 billion — a 2000 per cent increase in less than three years.

The Wild West

There are also many cryptocurrencies that have failed to perform, with the likes of AnarchistsPrime and Mustang coin languishing with market caps below $US4000. Also, because the cryptocurrency space is unregulated, it has the cavalier, Wild-West attitude reminiscent of the early days of the internet. It is not for the faint-hearted, with scammers preying on the naive and greedy. The regulators are lurking, with space slowly exhibiting almost self-regulated change — seeking to avoid the regulatory traps that could be waiting further down the track.

One step ahead of regulation

Cryptocurrencies can appear to look and act in a similar way to equities, by having a secondary marketplace and an expectation of growth. So instead of being labeled as ICOs, many developer teams are now beginning to re-label their crowdsales as "token sales", emphasizing cryptocurrency representing an intrinsic part of the software platform itself, rather than just a speculative investment. Often a prototype is built prior to the token sale to reaffirm this new label.

Initial coin offerings are a growing form of venture finance that could have major implications for the way entrepreneurs approach a venture capital. It is an area of high risk, both financial and regulatory, that is not for the faint-hearted or uninformed but does offer a significant financing alternative for entrepreneurs to explore. Tim Lea is chief executive of Verecitum.io, a blockchain platform that incentivizesrs from the film and television industry discover and report pirated examples of each other's work. They will be paid in Vents, a cryptocurrency Mr Lea will launch with a $US5 million initial coin offering in the second half of 2017.

Chuck Reynolds
Contributor

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member

Bitcoin soars Above $1,400

Bitcoin soars above $1400

Bitcoin Soars Above $1400

The price of bitcoin has bulldozed its way to a new historic all-time high on the Bitstamp Price Index (BPI) as the trading value of the cryptocurrency scaled beyond $1,400.

Bitcoin prices are now trading at previously uncharted levels as the value of the cryptocurrency reached a high of $1,425 on Bitstamp on Monday. The previous high of $1,350 registered on March 10 amid heightened traders’ interest in the lead-up to the SEC decision about a bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF).

Since the turn of 2017, bitcoin’s value has now risen by over 42%.

The latest surge in prices is a part of a continuing bullish trend that began in last quarter of 2016. The value of the world’s most prominent cryptocurrency struck a significant milestone on January 1 when prices struck $1,000. Within days, bitcoin made history and reached gold parity. That early momentum has stuck through what has been a dramatic four months since the turn of the year.

The crackdown led by the People’s Bank of China, the country’s central bank, remains the single largest negative driver in prices throughout January and February. Prices fell as low as $750 on January 12th, before recovering.

In March, the anticipation of the SEC’s decision toward a bitcoin ETF drove prices to hit an all-time BPI high of $1,350. The federal agency’s rejection sent prices tumbling below $1,000 in a sharp fall to a low of $891 before bouncing back to begin a bullish price trend in April.

April began with bitcoin gaining recognition as a legal method of payment in Japan. The legislation has led to retailers making notable moves toward accepting the cryptocurrency. As many as 260,000 Japanese storefronts will be enabled to accept bitcoin as payment by this summer. Emerging markets such as Russia and India have significantly changed their previously hardline stance with bitcoin, with authorities now talking about regulating (and acknowledging) the cryptocurrency. The last week of April also saw the SEC announce its decision to review its rejection of the bitcoin ETF application filed by the Winklevoss brothers. News of the review, it appears, has helped bitcoin’s bull run step up a gear. A week later, bitcoin is now trading at historic highs.

A protocol upgrade with Litecoin is among a number of factors that have contributed to the wider cryptocurrency market also making marked gains. Ethereum, the second most prominent cryptocurrency after Bitcoin, struck a new all-time high today and is now valued at $7 billion in overall market capitalization.

 

Global average prices struck a high a historic high of $1,433.81, according to data from BitcoinAverage.

David Ogden
Entrepreneur
 

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member

TradeCoinClub

TradeCoinClub

I have been laying low a bit lately while searching out and researching the best stuff online today, trying to fully and carefully apply whatever wisdom I’ve gained in some 13 years of working in this minefield.  And… I am SO happy to have MAJOR News for you! THIS may well be the best I have found, perhaps ever….

BITCOINS, YES –

Most knowledgeable online workers now prefer to use Bitcoins in business, for many very good reasons. Among the most knowledgeable, many have been looking for a TRADING PLATFORM for CRYPTOCURRENCIES and using Bitcoin, but there has not been anything genuine to date.  THAT HAS NOW CHANGED. 

WE CAN NOW –

–>> PASSIVELY EARN FROM FULLY AUTOMATED TRADING OF THE TOP TEN CRYPTOCURRENCIES.

–>> LEVERAGE BITCOIN AND EARN DAILY PASSIVE BITCOIN.

–>> DIVERSIFY PASSIVE BTC EARNINGS IN A POWERFUL NEW WAY.

–>> ACTIVELY EARN STILL MORE BTC BY REFERRING TO THE PLATFORM.

TCC: WHAT IT IS —

Trade Coin Club is an offshore registered company offering an automated trading platform for major cryptos.  Management is international and highly qualified. TCC trades in cryptos with licensed software that performs many millions of trades per day in ten of the major cryptocurrencies like Litecoin, Dash, BTC, etc. TCC itself works entirely with Bitcoins.

Globally in the launch and pre-launch in different regions. The company is full-function and earning and paying now.  This Site is sophisticated and well developed already and fully activated. TCC is uniquely well positioned in a high-demand global niche.  It is super-attractive for builders and leaders as well as for those who simply want to remain passive and leverage their Bitcoins into ever larger numbers.   Miners too will find it a highly attractive diversification that will likely earn a lot more strongly for them.

BENEFITS — PASSIVE:
Recent member reports indicate “trading” profits of around 20% monthly — in dynamic rising Bitcoins!  Set it and let it run.  Those returns are substantially better than “mining”.

ACTIVE:
Members who refer receive 10% on both levels one and two, and lesser amounts down to as many as 8 levels.  Plus referrers can earn 8 to 10% daily from a binary structure too.  And there are MORE referral bonuses. It’s rich, but it is also very smart.
Compounding of one’s choice of all or some earnings is available. Withdrawal of earnings is on demand.

Ride the BTC Rise: 
We are working 100% in Bitcoin, so as BTC rises we enjoy the full benefits of its rise — to who knows what heights!  This is in contrast to some online options that actually work in dollars and only use BTC for pay in’s and out’s.  In this as BTC rises your dollar based payout in BTC falls.

GUIDANCE —

It is scant on the site at the moment, as it is so early in the life of TCC, so the guidance to signing up, getting set up and earnings, etc., is currently best obtained in Youtube videos and not so much in the back office… as yet

Learn more:
TCC Details and OVERVIEW Videos and PDF –

TCC Presentation and background by boss, Joff Fortune, short, 20 min:  https://youtu.be/NiI7Joi_kag

TCC office in Belize: https://youtu.be/JHEDZ3PXx5Y

TCC PDF manual:  http://dreameagles.info/TCC/TCC_Manual_2-23-17.pdf

My personal advice is to dig in and enjoy these resources.  But do not get bogged down and too delayed in your explorations.  There can be good benefits to making your move quickly.  Be sure to have some Bitcoins, and a wallet to use for business.  I am personally using Coinbase and Blockchain as my bitcoin processors.  There are several choices.

How to Proceed —
Let’s keep this smooth and simple and let the videos take care of the heavy lifting.  Use them to ease your way and to avoid simple errors.

Cost Notes:
Joining is free, so you can do that immediately. Minimum to participate actively is 0.30 BTC (0.25 plus a one time 0.05)  Other entry levels are at 1 BTC and the highest at 5 BTC from which one will earn the most the fastest.

Referring?  Edit this info page if you wish with your reg link.  Duplicate the process of sharing these resources if you decide to build teams, pass these instructions on.  (Note: You need to be upgraded to at least the lowest Apprentice level package to refer.)

REGISTRATION LINK -> https://office.tradecoinclub.com/register/chuck 
Be sure your sponsor is listed as: Chuck

INSTRUCTIONS VIDEOS, use these as detailed guides, follow these.

1. SIGN UP PAGE:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p8dFkcWlEF4&feature=youtu.be&hd=1

2. BUY YOUR PACKAGE:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LPnZaKO4mnA&t=633s

3. HOW TO ACTIVATE YOUR WEEKLY AUTOMATIC TRADE:
 https://youtu.be/sneX_yRH8Og

BECAUSE OF LEGAL DEPARTMENT RECOMMENDATIONS, WE MUST NOW SET OUR TRADES EVERY WEEK. PLEASE MAKE SURE TO LOGIN EACH WEEK BETWEEN SUNDAY 4PM PST AND MONDAY 3:59PM PST TO RESET YOUR TRADES ACTIVATION.

4. SUBMITTING DOCS CORRECTLY:

 (AT YOUR CONVENIENCE)  documents can be submitted later but before requesting withdrawals.
https://youtu.be/zVAM7jDlwOk

5.  Refer if you wish. 
Edit this email to make it your own, with care to the signup link, and share it with your favorite contacts and friends.

6.  WHY IS THE EXCHANGE RATE WALLET ONLY SHOWING HALF OF YOUR DEPOSITS?
https://youtu.be/E8D4MhTmowA

7.  HOW TO COMPOUND YOUR EARNINGS.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4mHr6jcHIfw&t=370s

8.  More info:
 http://www.tradecoinclub.info

9.  ENJOY A BETTER LIFE IN A RICHER WORLD. 

Once again…

REGISTRATION LINK -> https://office.tradecoinclub.com/register/chuck
Be sure your sponsor is listed as:  chuck

P.S. keep this page for future reference and edit it to suit your needs.  Thank you. 

Chuck Reynolds
Contributor

Alan Zibluk Markethive Founding Member