Thorchain, a standalone blockchain for decentralized crypto trading, is set to go live Tuesday, potentially lubricating the gears of a global $2 trillion market six months into a bull run.
Three years in the making (a lifetime in crypto), Thorchain works a lot like other automated market makers (AMMs) such as Bancor and Uniswap, but with an important difference: it enables trades of real cryptocurrencies from completely different blockchains – not “wrapped” or synthetic versions. With each new blockchain that can trade over Thorchain, the so-called “chaosnet” expands.
“April 13 is delivering on the initial promises of the white paper: Delivering on a multichain chaosnet,” Chad Barraford, the technical lead at Thorchain told CoinDesk in a phone call. “You’ll be able to swap freely from one chain to another, one asset to another.”
If it works as intended, users will be able to make such swaps with real currencies (not an ersatz version like wrapped BTC on the Ethereum network) and without having to trust an intermediary. AMMs have been the leading kind of decentralized exchange (DEX) that are key to the decentralized finance (DeFi) boom on Ethereum, the second-largest blockchain.
Bringing trustless trading to many of the biggest chains while skipping the friction of making a copy of a coin on one chain seems likely to drive a lot of
AppSwarm to Launch Blockchain Research Lab in Tulsa and New York – MarTech Series
Blockchain could play an important role in future agriculture and food security – The Conversation CA
Global food supply chains proved brittle during the COVID-19 pandemic, leading for calls to boost the resilience of global food supply chains through improved efficiency in production, distribution and consumption of nutritious food. How could technologies like blockchain that provide data to producers, distributors and consumers be part of the solution?
Big data applications may present opportunities to address inefficiencies from farm to table and improve global food security.
Blockchain, a linked decentralized database that stores auditable data throughout entire supply chains, may change the game for food producers across the globe.
With global-scale food systems such as seafood, nearly 40 per cent of which is traded globally, data transparency and traceability through technologies like blockchain are important for socially and environmentally conscious decision making and to facilitate trust among stakeholders.
Blockchain technologies can be used to consolidate information on the quality of the seed, track how crops grow and record the journey once it leaves the farm. In Canada, for example, Grain Discovery – an online blockchain marketplace – is an example of data being leveraged by those involved in the food system to grow and market globally competitive crops.
Coinbase’s Lofty Valuation Might Erode as Crypto Markets Mature – The Wall Street Journal
Cryptocurrency giant Coinbase Global Inc. is gearing up for what investors expect to be a blockbuster stock-market debut, though doubts persist about its lofty valuation.
Coinbase plans to go public Wednesday through a direct listing on the Nasdaq Stock Market . The company, which runs the largest U.S. exchange for bitcoin and other digital currencies, could achieve a bigger market capitalization than any of the world’s traditional exchange operators. But it faces a number of threats, including competition in the fast-evolving cryptocurrency industry, that could undermine its stock price in the long run.
Based on the price of Coinbase shares in private-market trading earlier this year, the company is worth $91.5 billion on a fully diluted basis, securities filings show. And Coinbase reached that valuation even before releasing blowout results for the first quarter, when it benefited from a huge rally in the price of bitcoin.
During the first three months of 2021, Coinbase attracted 13 million new users and estimated it generated earnings of $730 million to $800 million on revenue of $1.8 billion. Even at the lower end of that earnings range, that’s more than twice its profit for all of last year.
The Role of Blockchain and Decentralization in the Digital Economy – hackernoon.com
Blockchain is a key emerging technology in realizing the full potential of the digital economy along with other emerging technologies and paradigms such as 5G, IoT, Cloud, AI, etc.
Blockchain is very interesting in and of itself however, because of it’s potential not only technology-wise but economics-wise.
How Blockchain Disrupts Governance Models
Blockchain disrupts many economic models we have today such as shareholder capitalism in US and social-market models such as in China. Especially Public Blockchains which are open-source and hybrid or decentralized which disrupt organization models we have today with steep hierarchies to more flatter organizations and as we change the dynamics from few larger firms to more smaller firms. This is a key impact in moving from shareholder capitalism to multi-stakeholder capitalism during Industry 4.0 and the 4th Industrial Revolution as we move from the Industrial Economy to the Smart Economy.
Public Blockchains have mainly been associated with cryptocurrencies only, however they are much more expansive than just cryptocurrencies. Public Blockchains that can onboard millions of open-source developers successfully are resulting in innovation in the way organizations are built, in the way financial services are offered and in the way employees and community members collaborate to more flatter, decentralized, digitized and open-source mechanics.
What’s the Deal with Crypto Art? – JSTOR Daily
The whole subject of crypto technology can seem surreal, esoteric, almost comically futuristic. So when a digital file built on blockchain technology sells at auction for $69.3 million in cryptocurrency, it’s no surprise that some people are baffled.
That’s what happened with Everydays: The First 5000 Days, by digital artist Beeple. The work is a collection of pixels, made unique, and therefore valuable, by a “non-fungible token” (NFT). This new artistic frontier is all built on blockchain, writes Amy Whitaker, an academic who specializes in the intersection of art and economics. In a 2019 literature review, Whitaker considered the huge potential for blockchain technology to bring radical change to the art industry.
In the late 1980s, Whitaker writes, cryptographer Stuart Haber and physicist Scott Stornetta created a chain of records, called a blockchain, to function as a tamper-proof ledger of time-stamped information. The technology creates a decentralized database, so the job of record-keeping no longer needs to fall on one specific body or government.
Most people learned about blockchain because of Bitcoin, a decentralized and denationalized currency that officially launched in 2009. “Although blockchain goes well beyond cryptocurrency as a tool…Bitcoin illustrates the wildly unpredictable trajectory of the invention in its early days,” writes Whitaker.
So how does a JPG come to hold value as an artwork? The question can be
China’s bitcoin mining is threatening its climate change targets, study says – CNBC
Technicians make repairs to bitcoin mining machines at a mining facility operated by Bitmain in Ordos, Inner Mongolia, China, on Friday, Aug. 11, 2017.
Qilai Shen | Bloomberg | Getty Images
China could end up exceeding its emissions reduction targets as a result of carbon-intensive bitcoin mining, according to a study published this week.
Some 75% of the world’s bitcoin mining is done in China, where there is cheap electricity and relatively easy access to manufacturers who make specialized hardware, according to the study. As a result, the nation’s bitcoin carbon footprint is as big as one of its ten largest cities, the paper claims.
Unlike most forms of currency — issued by a single entity like a central bank — bitcoin is based on a decentralized network and needs to be “mined.”
This takes place when bitcoin transactions, recorded on a public ledger called the blockchain, are “verified” by miners. These miners run purpose-built computers to solve complex mathematical puzzles that effectively allow a bitcoin transaction to happen; the miners then receive bitcoin as a reward.
This mining on computers uses vast amounts of electricity, especially when conducted on a large scale.
The research on China’s mining activities — published by peer-reviewed journal Nature Communications on Tuesday — was conducted by academics from the University of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Tsinghua University, Cornell University and the University of Surrey.
It comes despite rhetoric from China that it is keen to become
How Cardano Makes Decentralization and Blockchain Easily Accessible – InvestorPlace
Cardano (CCC:ADA-USD) is built upon the idea of decentralization. This is a core tenet of blockchain. Decentralization is central to the idea of blockchain technology, and central to the argument for why people should care about blockchain, and thus Cardano.
Cardano has just managed to decentralize one of three important elements of its ecosystem. Let’s look at why that’s important, and talk about the remaining elements to be decentralized.
Decentralization at Cardano
One of the underlying arguments in favor of blockchain technology is that decentralization is achievable. Indeed, decentralization leads to power by the people, and ostensibly for the people.
The same argument in favor of decentralization applies to Bitcoin (CCC:BTC-USD). Yet, there is a big difference between the degree of centralization between Cardano and Bitcoin in their block production.
Cardano relies on stake pool operators to control block production on its network. The important news here is that Cardano’s 2200 stake pool operators are fully decentralized. In and of itself, this news is fairly difficult to work with. Because blockchain technology and terminology remains so nascent, this kind of news is difficult to comprehend. Fortunately, we can make a pretty good comparison with Bitcoin.
85% of Bitcoin block production is done by the network’s 10 most influential pools. Unfortunately this leads to a situation in which smaller stakes often have no choice but to lend their computing power to the large pools. The large pools
NFTs Are Hot, But Patchwork of Laws, Rules Needs Watching – Bloomberg Tax
Non-fungible tokens, known as NFTs, have become the latest craze in the digital asset space. Leveraging the same blockchain technology that powers popular virtual currencies such as Bitcoin and Ether, issuers are creating digital assets intended to serve as unique electronic certificates of ownership of intangible digital assets, such as digital art, music, sports memorabilia, or of tangible real-world collectibles.
Like traditional virtual assets, NFTs are digital tokens primarily issued on public, or decentralized, blockchains. They can be bought and sold in peer-to-peer transactions or through physical or decentralized platforms. They are often designed as so-called “smart contracts” that are programmed to automatically perform certain functions, such as forwarding a portion of each resale price to the original artist.
Transactions in NFTs are validated through a consensus mechanism that helps to ensure that each NFT is authentic and not an unauthorized copy. Unlike traditional virtual assets, however, each NFT contains unique information and cannot be directly substituted on a like-kind basis with other NFTs, as can Bitcoin with other Bitcoin or, in the real world, dollars for dollars.
NFTs can be electronically traded in a game by the participants first assigning a value to an NFT and exchanging like-valued NFTs for one another.
A Regulatory Patchwork and Unclear Laws
Collectors are buying and reselling NFTs with a fury. From a market capitalization of $41 million as recently as 2018, NFTs grew to a market capitalization of at least $338 million in 2020 and are on pace to substantially exceed that
SEC’s Focus On DeFi Is Made Clear Through Its Suit Against LBRY, Inc. – Lexology
On March 29, 2021, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission filed a complaint against LBRY, Inc., a decentralized blockchain company that operates a content sharing application. The SEC alleges that starting in 2016 and continuing through the present, LBRY sold more than 13 million digital asset securities called LBRY Credits to investors (some in the U.S.) in exchange for U.S. dollars, bitcoins, and other consideration. The SEC claims that LBRY Credits constitute investment contracts under the Howey Test, which LBRY failed to register as securities in violation of Sections 5(a) and 5(c) of the Securities Act of 1933. This appears to be the first Section 5 case against an issuer of a token on a decentralized platform, signaling the SEC’s focus on decentralized finance, or DeFi.
In its complaint, the SEC claims that LBRY Credits are nothing more than investment contracts: individuals and entities purchased LBRY Credits for U.S. dollars, bitcoins, and other consideration; LBRY Credit holders invested in a common enterprise; and LBRY Credit holders expected a profit from LBRY’s efforts. The SEC also claims that the LBRY Network may not be as decentralized as LBRY claims, arguing that:
- LBRY maintains managerial and entrepreneurial control over the LBRY Network;
- LBRY continues to control its software code for its applications and the protocol;
- LBRY continues to unilaterally make strategic and managerial decisions about the future of the LBRY Network; and
- LBRY continues to unilaterally decide how to allocate the capital and resources it has pooled from investors to grow the Network.
Shortly after the