It is no doubt Grayscale’s booming popularity as a mainstream investment has caused a lot of community hullabaloo lately. As such, I felt it was worth making a FAQ regarding the topic. I’m looking to update this as needed and of course am open to suggestions / adding any questions. The goal is simply to have a thread we can link to anyone with questions on Grayscaleand its products. Instead of explaining the same thing 3 times a day, shoot those posters over to this thread.My hope is that these questions are answered in a fairly simple and easy to understand manner. I think as the sub grows it will be a nice reference point for newcomers. Disclaimer: I do NOT work for Grayscale and as such am basing all these answers on information that can be found on their website / reports. (Grayscale’s official FAQ can be found here). I also do NOT have a finance degree, I do NOT have a Series 6 / 7 / 140-whatever, and I do NOT work with investment products for my day job. I have an accounting background and work within the finance world so I have the general ‘business’ knowledge to put it all together, but this is all info determined in my best faith effort as a layman. The point being is this --- it is possible I may explain something wrong or missed the technical terms, and if that occurs I am more than happy to update anything that can be proven incorrect Everything below will be in reference to ETHE but will apply to GBTC as well.If those two segregate in any way, I will note that accordingly.
ETHE is essentially a stock that intends to loosely track the price of ETH. It does so by having each ETHE be backed by a specific amount of ETH that is held on chain. Initially, the newly minted ETHE can only be purchased by institutions and accredited investors directly from Grayscale. Once a year has passed (6 months for GBTC) it can then be listed on the OTCQX Best Market exchange for secondary trading. Once listed on OTCQX, anyone investor can purchase at this point. Additional information on ETHE can be found here.
So ETHE is an ETF?
No. For technical reasons beyond my personal understandings it is not labeled an ETF. I know it all flows back to the “Securities Act Rule 144”, but due to my limited knowledge on SEC regulations I don’t want to misspeak past that. If anyone is more knowledgeable on the subject I am happy to input their answer here.
How long has ETHE existed?
ETHE was formed 12/14/2017. GBTC was formed 9/25/2013.
How is ETHE created?
The trust will issue shares to “Authorized Participants” in groups of 100 shares (called baskets). Authorized Participants are the only persons that may place orders to create these baskets and they do it on behalf of the investor. Source: Creation and Redemption of Shares section on page 39 of the “Grayscale Ethereum Trust Annual Report (2019)” – Located Here Note – The way their reports word this makes it sound like there is an army of authorizers doing the dirty work, but in reality there is only one Authorized Participant. At this moment the “Genesis” company is the sole Authorized Participant. Genesis is owned by the “Digital Currency Group, Inc.” which is the parent company of Grayscale as well. (And to really go down the rabbit hole it looks like DCG is the parent company of CoinDesk and is “backing 150+ companies across 30 countries, including Coinbase, Ripple, and Chainalysis.”) Source: Digital Currency Group, Inc. informational section on page 77 of the “Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (BTC) Form 10-K (2019)” – Located Here Source: Barry E. Silbert informational section on page 75 of the “Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (BTC) Form 10-K (2019)” – Located Here
How does Grayscale acquire the ETH to collateralize the ETHE product?
An Investor may acquire ETHE by paying in cash or exchanging ETH already owned.
Cash: The investor pays the subscription amount in cash and the Authorized Participant will use that cash to purchase ETH.
ETH: The investor transfers the ETH to the Authorized Participant, which will contribute the ETH in-kind to the Trust.
Source: Creation and Redemption of Shares section on page 40 of the “Grayscale Ethereum Trust Annual Report (2019)” – Located Here
Where does Grayscale store their ETH? Does it have a specific wallet address we can follow?
ETH is stored with Coinbase Custody Trust Company, LLC. I am unaware of any specific address or set of addresses that can be used to verify the ETH is actually there. As an aside - I would actually love to see if anyone knows more about this as it’s something that’s sort of peaked my interest after being asked about it… I find it doubtful we can find that however. Source: Part C. Business Information, Item 8, subsection A. on page 16 of the “Grayscale Ethereum Trust Annual Report (2019)” – Located Here
Can ETHE be redeemed for ETH?
No, currently there is no way to give your shares of ETHE back to Grayscale to receive ETH back. The only method of getting back into ETH would be to sell your ETHE to someone else and then use those proceeds to buy ETH yourself. Source: Redemption Procedures on page 41 of the “Grayscale Ethereum Trust Annual Report (2019)” – Located Here
Why are they not redeeming shares?
I think the report summarizes it best:
Redemptions of Shares are currently not permitted and the Trust is unable to redeem Shares. Subject to receipt of regulatory approval from the SEC and approval by the Sponsor in its sole discretion, the Trust may in the future operate a redemption program. Because the Trust does not believe that the SEC would, at this time, entertain an application for the waiver of rules needed in order to operate an ongoing redemption program, the Trust currently has no intention of seeking regulatory approval from the SEC to operate an ongoing redemption program.
Source: Redemption Procedures on page 41 of the “Grayscale Ethereum Trust Annual Report (2019)” – Located Here
What is the fee structure?
ETHE has an annual fee of 2.5%. GBTC has an annual fee of 2.0%. Fees are paid by selling the underlying ETH / BTC collateralizing the asset. Source: ETHE’s informational page on Grayscale’s website - Located Here Source: Description of Trust on page 31 & 32 of the “Grayscale Ethereum Trust Annual Report (2019)” – Located Here
What is the ratio of ETH to ETHE?
At the time of posting (6/19/2020) each ETHE share is backed by .09391605 ETH. Each share of GBTC is backed by .00096038 BTC. ETHE & GBTC’s specific information page on Grayscale’s website updates the ratio daily – Located Here For a full historical look at this ratio, it can be found on the Grayscale home page on the upper right side if you go to Tax Documents > 2019 Tax Documents > Grayscale Ethereum Trust 2019 Tax Letter.
Why is the ratio not 1:1? Why is it always decreasing?
While I cannot say for certain why the initial distribution was not a 1:1 backing, it is more than likely to keep the price down and allow more investors a chance to purchase ETHE / GBTC. As noted above, fees are paid by selling off the ETH collateralizing ETHE. So this number will always be trending downward as time goes on. Source: Description of Trust on page 32 of the “Grayscale Ethereum Trust Annual Report (2019)” – Located Here
I keep hearing about how this is locked supply… explain?
As noted above, there is currently no redemption program for converting your ETHE back into ETH. This means that once an ETHE is issued, it will remain in circulation until a redemption program is formed --- something that doesn’t seem to be too urgent for the SEC or Grayscale at the moment. Tiny amounts will naturally be removed due to fees, but the bulk of the asset is in there for good. Knowing that ETHE cannot be taken back and destroyed at this time, the ETH collateralizing it will not be removed from the wallet for the foreseeable future. While it is not fully locked in the sense of say a totally lost key, it is not coming out any time soon. Per their annual statement:
The Trust’s ETH will be transferred out of the ETH Account only in the following circumstances: (i) transferred to pay the Sponsor’s Fee or any Additional Trust Expenses, (ii) distributed in connection with the redemption of Baskets (subject to the Trust’s obtaining regulatory approval from the SEC to operate an ongoing redemption program and the consent of the Sponsor), (iii) sold on an as-needed basis to pay Additional Trust Expenses or (iv) sold on behalf of the Trust in the event the Trust terminates and liquidates its assets or as otherwise required by law or regulation.
Source: Description of Trust on page 31 of the “Grayscale Ethereum Trust Annual Report (2019)” – Located Here
Grayscale now owns a huge chunk of both ETH and BTC’s supply… should we be worried about manipulation, a sell off to crash the market crash, a staking cartel?
First, it’s important to remember Grayscale is a lot more akin to an exchange then say an investment firm. Grayscale is working on behalf of its investors to create this product for investor control. Grayscale doesn’t ‘control’ the ETH it holds any more then Coinbase ‘controls’ the ETH in its hot wallet. (Note: There are likely some varying levels of control, but specific to this topic Grayscale cannot simply sell [legally, at least] the ETH by their own decision in the same manner Coinbase wouldn't be able to either.) That said, there shouldn’t be any worry in the short to medium time-frame. As noted above, Grayscale can’t really remove ETH other than for fees or termination of the product. At 2.5% a year, fees are noise in terms of volume. Grayscale seems to be the fastest growing product in the crypto space at the moment and termination of the product seems unlikely. IF redemptions were to happen tomorrow, it’s extremely unlikely we would see a mass exodus out of the product to redeem for ETH. And even if there was incentive to get back to ETH, the premium makes it so that it would be much more cost effective to just sell your ETHE on the secondary market and buy ETH yourself. Remember, any redemption is up to the investors and NOT something Grayscale has direct control over.
Yes, but what about [insert criminal act here]…
Alright, yes. Technically nothing is stopping Grayscale from selling all the ETH / BTC and running off to the Bahamas (Hawaii?). BUT there is no real reason for them to do so. Barry is an extremely public figure and it won’t be easy for him to get away with that. Grayscale’s Bitcoin Trust creates SEC reports weekly / bi-weekly and I’m sure given the sentiment towards crypto is being watched carefully. Plus, Grayscale is making tons of consistent revenue and thus has little to no incentive to give that up for a quick buck.
That’s a lot of ‘happy little feels’ Bob, is there even an independent audit or is this Tether 2.0?
Actually yes, an independent auditor report can be found in their annual reports. It is clearly aimed more towards the financial side and I doubt the auditors are crypto savants, but it is at least one extra set of eyes. Auditors are Friedman LLP – Auditor since 2015. Source: Independent Auditor Report starting on page 116 (of the PDF itself) of the “Grayscale Ethereum Trust Annual Report (2019)” – Located Here As mentioned by user TheCrpytosAndBloods (In Comments Below), a fun fact:
The company’s auditors Friedman LLP were also coincidentally TetheBitfinex’s auditors until They controversially parted ways in 2018 when the Tether controversy was at its height. I am not suggesting for one moment that there is anything shady about DCG - I just find it interesting it’s the same auditor.
“Grayscale sounds kind of lame” / “Not your keys not your crypto!” / “Why is anyone buying this, it sounds like a scam?”
Welp, for starters this honestly is not really a product aimed at the people likely to be reading this post. To each their own, but do remember just because something provides no value to you doesn’t mean it can’t provide value to someone else. That said some of the advertised benefits are as follows:
Access to trading within a tax advantaged retirement account
Institutions can easily and safely get exposure to crypto in a more legal-friendly manner
Ease of use for those who are not very technologically savvy
Ease of access for someone who doesn’t want to set up a Coinbase account
Perceived trust in institutional platforms over something like Coinbase or Kraken
Degen traders who just want access to the volatility ETHE provides that have no interest in crypto beyond that
So for example, I can set up an IRA at a brokerage account that has $0 trading fees. Then I can trade GBTC and ETHE all day without having to worry about tracking my taxes. All with the relative safety something like E-Trade provides over Binance. As for how it benefits the everyday ETH holder? I think the supply lock is a positive. I also think this product exposes the Ethereum ecosystem to people who otherwise wouldn’t know about it.
Why is there a premium? Why is ETHE’s premium so insanely high compared to GBTC’s premium?
There are a handful of theories of why a premium exists at all, some even mentioned in the annual report. The short list is as follows:
ETHE is NOT redeeming shares and as such doesn’t have an effective arbitrage mechanism
ETHE has a 1 year wait to be sold on the secondary market, again negating the ability to effectively arbitrage the premium
People may simply be willing to pay a premium for the benefits stated above.
Why is ETHE’s so much higher the GBTC’s? Again, a few thoughts:
ETHE hasn’t been around as long, so there is less secondary market supply to go around
ETHE was listed at an insanely high premium to begin with
ETHE might simply be more popular at the moment
Could just be sheer stupidity (investors think ETHE is a 1:1 ratio not 1:11)
Are there any other differences between ETHE and GBTC?
I touched on a few of the smaller differences, but one of the more interesting changes is GBTC is now a “SEC reporting company” as of January 2020. Which again goes beyond my scope of knowledge so I won’t comment on it too much… but the net result is GBTC is now putting out weekly / bi-weekly 8-K’s and annual 10-K’s. This means you can track GBTC that much easier at the moment as well as there is an extra layer of validity to the product IMO.
I’m looking for some statistics on ETHE… such as who is buying, how much is bought, etc?
There is a great Q1 2020 report I recommend you give a read that has a lot of cool graphs and data on the product. It’s a little GBTC centric, but there is some ETHE data as well. It can be found here hidden within the 8-K filings.Q1 2020 is the 4/16/2020 8-K filing. For those more into a GAAP style report see the 2019 annual 10-K of the same location.
Is Grayscale only just for BTC and ETH?
No, there are other products as well. In terms of a secondary market product, ETCG is the Ethereum Classic version of ETHE. Fun Fact – ETCG was actually put out to the secondary market first. It also has a 3% fee tied to it where 1% of it goes to some type of ETC development fund. In terms of institutional and accredited investors, there are a few ‘fan favorites’ such as Bitcoin Cash, Litcoin, Stellar, XRP, and Zcash. Something called Horizion (Backed by ZEN I guess? Idk to be honest what that is…). And a diversified Mutual Fund type fund that has a little bit of all of those. None of these products are available on the secondary market.
Are there alternatives to Grayscale?
I know they exist, but I don’t follow them. I’ll leave this as a “to be edited” section and will add as others comment on what they know. Per user Over-analyser (in comments below):
As asked by pegcity - Okay so I was under the impression you can just give them your own ETH and get ETHE, but do you get 11 ETHE per ETH or do you get the market value of ETH in USD worth of ETHE?
I have always understood that the ETHE issued directly through Grayscale is issued without the premium. As in, if I were to trade 1 ETH for ETHE I would get 11, not say only 2 or 3 because the secondary market premium is so high. And if I were paying cash only I would be paying the price to buy 1 ETH to get my 11 ETHE. Per page 39 of their annual statement, it reads as follows:
The Trust will issue Shares to Authorized Participants from time to time, but only in one or more Baskets (with a Basket being a block of 100 Shares). The Trust will not issue fractions of a Basket. The creation (and, should the Trust commence a redemption program, redemption) of Baskets will be made only in exchange for the delivery to the Trust, or the distribution by the Trust, of the number of whole and fractional ETH represented by each Basket being created (or, should the Trust commence a redemption program, redeemed), which is determined by dividing (x) the number of ETH owned by the Trust at 4:00 p.m., New York time, on the trade date of a creation or redemption order, after deducting the number of ETH representing the U.S. dollar value of accrued but unpaid fees and expenses of the Trust (converted using the ETH Index Price at such time, and carried to the eighth decimal place), by (y) the number of Shares outstanding at such time (with the quotient so obtained calculated to one one-hundred-millionth of one ETH (i.e., carried to the eighth decimal place)), and multiplying such quotient by 100 (the “Basket ETH Amount”). All questions as to the calculation of the Basket ETH Amount will be conclusively determined by the Sponsor and will be final and binding on all persons interested in the Trust. The Basket ETH Amount multiplied by the number of Baskets being created or redeemed is the “Total Basket ETH Amount.” The number of ETH represented by a Share will gradually decrease over time as the Trust’s ETH are used to pay the Trust’s expenses. Each Share represented approximately 0.0950 ETH and 0.0974 ETH as of December 31, 2019 and 2018, respectively.
Act 22 new annual compliance raised from $300 to $5000!
This was warned about when they raised the annual compliance fee from $50 to $300 in 2015, but Society leaders, as it now turns out, made a grave mistake in dismissing the concerns from the wiser posters. Objectors at the time correctly pointed out that if the $300 fee wasn't stopped, there would be nothing to stop the Puerto Rican government from ratcheting up the annual compliance fee further in the future. This is an indirect, underhanded, backdoor tax on decree holders that shows the Puerto Rican government cannot be trusted. This implies there are 2380 Act 22 Decree Holders. $11,900,000/$5000=2380. Just as the Puerto Rico government tried to circumvent getting the required approval for contracts over $10,000,000, with the Covid-19 testing kits, by instead claiming they were "purchase orders" instead of "contracts," Puerto Rico government is now sticking Act 22 Individual Investors with another $5000 tax, by raising the annual compliance "fee" from $300 to $5000, an increase of over 1500%!!! These ever higher ratcheting fees have made these programs only for the "super rich." There is no rational basis for the fee to increase by $4700 in one year. So now its $5000 to apply for Act 22, $5000 to accept Act 22, then $15,000 more annually from the $10,000 annual charitable donation and $5000 more for annual filing? That's $25,000 total in the first year, and $15,000 or more every year, something that only the "super rich" can afford. I thought The Society was going to use its unified voice to protect Act 22 people, not only represent the "super rich." How are the benefits being preserved, when instead the decree holders that are not "super rich" are being squeezed to death with soaring taxes, hidden as soaring annual compliance filing fees? What is to stop Puerto Rico politicians from raising the annual compliance filing fee to $50,000? As the fee is not commensurate with the costs to process the annual reports, it shows this is nothing but an underhanded illegal tax, disguised as a fee, mislabeled as a fee. Why should the annual filing compliance fee go up 100x in 5 years? That's egregiously unreasonable. Similar government arrogance is what killed the tax incentive program in the US Virgin Islands.
Lawsuit? Who can create a Puerto Rico charitable foundation with its mission to keep the Puerto Rican government honest? For those who are required to do the $5000+$5000 forced annual donations, a new charitable foundation should be established to promote honest government in Puerto Rico, to accept these donations.
I will be telling all my friends to not move to Puerto Rico because the government can't be trusted to honor the decrees without sneaking in underhanded, indirect taxes, that are mischaracterized as annual filing fees.
First article is somewhat inaccurate/misleading, since it applies to ALL Act 22 decree holders, not just those involved in cryptocurrency. It will harm everyone involved in the program, and deter many others from coming. Only the "super rich" will keep coming to Puerto Rico or stay in Puerto Rico. https://decrypt.co/26245/puerto-rico-new-law-crypto-tax-more-expensive New law threatens Puerto Rico’s status as crypto tax haven
Puerto Rico Governor Wanda Vazquez has signed a new law into effect that increases the yearly fee associated with tax incentives for crypto entrepreneurs.
Puerto Rico has updated the law that governs the tax incentives for crypto entrepreneurs and others.
Governor Vazquez has increased the yearly fee to qualify for such incentives from $300 to $5,000.
Local tax consultants say the new fees dissuade new crypto investment on the island, given the current state of the market.
Crypto investors and entrepreneurs looking to take advantage of Puerto Rico’s favorable tax incentives will now find it more costly to do so. Late last week, Governor Wanda Vazquez signedLaw 40-2020into effect, which made a key change to the rules that govern tax incentives for new residents. Previously, investors who moved to the island and applied for these incentives were required to pay a yearly fee of $300 for the privilege. The new law increases that yearly fee to $5,000. The Puerto Rican government expects to generate $11.9 million in fees with this rate increase in an update to what was formerly known as law 22-2012. The new legislation also provides a tax contribution reduction of 3% for those who earn $100,000 or less. "The increment in maintenance costs for the decrees raises the bar for those who take part and for potential investors looking to relocate to the island for the tax benefits,” Giovanni Méndez, managing partner at Puerto Rican tax consulting firm Geo Tax, told Decrypt. “The higher fee assumes that all of the participants are millionaires who hold fortunes with immediate liquidity. Those of us in the community know that this is not the case for a large part of investors and entrepreneurs that have relocated to the island," he said. Indeed, the fees and other requirements apply to anyone who has lived in Puerto Rico for at least six months and applies for tax relief for his or her business.
SAN JUAN—Is Puerto Rico any closer to becoming the “crypto haven” that blockchain entrepreneurs and investors once promised? The attendees of Thursday’s fourth-annual CoinAgenda Caribbean conf... NewsBusinessJaime ChaconMar 3, 2020 According to Geo Tax, the total cost of moving to the island to save on taxes includes a $750 filing fee, $5,000 special fund fee once approved, $10,000 yearly donation (split in two), plus the new $5,000 yearly fee. "Regarding investors in the cryptocurrency market, the increase in costs affects whether some will remain on the island due to the volatility of the market and changes in value,” said Méndez. “The new Incentives Code brought sections that incorporate benefits to the crypto and blockchain markets which is something positive, but it clearly contrasts with this last legislation,” he said. It’s these tax incentives that have brought entrepreneurs from across various industries, including cryptocurrency, to the US commonwealth. Co-founder of EOS Alliance Block.one Brock Pierce and gold proponent (and Bitcoin skeptic) Peter Shiff, for example, make Puerto Rico their home for at least half the year. Just last month, during the CoinAgenda Caribbean conference in San Juan, Pierce reiterated his optimism that Puerto Rico can still become the “blockchain island”—a beacon for the industry—that was once promised. NEXT... https://coingeek.com/puerto-rico-changes-gears-on-digital-currency-haven-status Business 23 April 2020 Noah Bradley 📷 Puerto Rico was once seen as a perfect location for digital currency startups. It had considerable tax incentives in place that benefited investors and entrepreneurs, which led to an increase in the development of business solutions in the U.S.-controlled territory. However, either by design or due to economic shortcomings caused by the coronavirus and other disasters, Puerto Rico needs to find new sources of revenue. As a result, a new law has been approved that will change the structure of the digital currency tax incentive programs in place. Puerto Rico Governor Wanda Vazquez approved a new law last week, Law 40-2020, that alters the way tax incentives are provided to new residents. Spanish media outletEl Nuevo Día(The New Day) points out that the previous annual fee of $300 for those who moved to the island and applied for the incentive has been substantially increased. It has now jumped up to $5,000, and is expected to generate an additional $11.9 million for the government. In addition, there is also a new tax contribution reduction equal to 3% for anyone who earns $100,000 or less. In correspondence with Decrypt, Puerto Rican tax consultant Giovanni Méndez, representing tax consulting firm Geo Tax, says, “The increment in maintenance costs for the decrees raises the bar for those who take part and for potential investors looking to relocate to the island for the tax benefits. The higher fee assumes that all of the participants are millionaires who hold fortunes with immediate liquidity. Those of us in the community know that this is not the case for a large part of investors and entrepreneurs that have relocated to the island.” Now, for anyone wishing to move to the island, the upfront expenses are much higher, somewhat negating the existing tax incentives. There is a $750 filing fee, a $5,000 “special fund fee” if the filing application is approved, a $10,000 obligatory annual contribution (with the possibility of having the fee made in two payments) and the new $5,000 fee. The structure will be detrimental to entities in the blockchain and digital currency spaces, and Méndez adds, “Regarding investors in the cryptocurrency market, the increase in costs affects whether some will remain on the island due to the volatility of the market and changes in value. The new Incentives Code brought sections that incorporate benefits to the crypto and blockchain markets which is something positive, but it clearly contrasts with this last legislation.” The changes could force many who have decided to call the territory home to pack up and look for better, cheaper alternatives. Puerto Rico has been slammed by a number of major storms in recent years that have almost decimated its infrastructure, and the U.S. has been indifferent in providing a considerable amount of relief. The weakened foundation and the new fees might be enough to thwart Puerto Rico’s plans of being a major digital currency hub. NEXT...Key part translated from Spanish... https://www.elnuevodia.com/noticias/locales/nota/wandavazquezfirmaenmiendasalareformacontributiva-2562250 imposes a contribution of $5,000, previously $300 - for the delivery of each annual report presented by the citizens benefiting from the benefits. of the Law to Encourage the Transfer of Individual Investors to Puerto Rico, previously known as Law 22-2012. That last increase will generate $ 11.9 million new, according to Soto told the press.
Weekly Update: $WIB, $VID, $CHZ on ParJar, Pynk crushes Web Summit, XIO swap bridge, Sentivate reorg... – 1 Nov - 7 Nov'19
Hi folks! We are catching up real quick. Here’s your week at Parachute + partners (1 Nov - 7 Nov'19): Three new projects and their awesome communities joined the Parachute fam this week: Wibson, VideoCoin and Chiliz. Welcome! And if you missed, we also added Shuffle Monster, Harmony and CyberFM last week. #cryptoforeveryone is getting bigger by the day. Woot woot! In this week’s TTR trivias, we had Richi’s movie quiz qith a 25k $PAR pot. Charlotte's Rebus trivia in TTR on Tuesday had 25k $PAR in prizes for 10 Qs. Noice! Jason’s creative contest for this week was #artdeadmin: “draw/paint/sketch/whatever you imagine a group of the parachute admins doing together”. Click here to check out some of the entries of the TTR Halloween photo contest from last week. Doc Victor (from Cuba) hosted a Champions League wager round in tip room. And congrats to Victor (Anox) for passing his final Medical exams. We have 2 Doc Vics now. One from Cuba and the other from *redacted*. Some of the top #artdeadmin submissions. Insane talent! Jason’s running medal collection. Say what! Andy shared the latest standings in the Parachute Fantasy Football League (#PFFL). Clinton (7-2) is on top followed by Chris (7-2) in second place and Hang (7-2) in third place. So close! As we rolled into November, Parachute crew signed up for Movember. So now we have 3 teams from the Parachute fold, doing a no-shave November for men’s health issues: Parachute (Tony, Cap, Alexis, Cuban Doc Vic, Richi), TTR (Vali, Ashok, Tavo, Alejandro, Marcos, PeaceLove) and TTR-Ladies (Mery, Martha, AngellyC, Liem, Durby, LeidyElena, Charlotte). Show them some support peeps! This is all for charity. Show them some support folks! This week’s #wholesomewed was about “your most precious possession and give us the story of why it is so precious to you”. A whole lot of $PAR was given out for some real wholesome life stories. Best. Community. Eva! Two-for-Tuesday theme for this week: colors! As always, a melodic Tuesday thanks to Gian! And thank you Borna for writing about Parachute and ParJar on the Blockchain Andy blog. <- This is where Jose creates his magic. Respect / Cuban Doc Vic’s doggo, Symba, could easily be a TTR mascot. Good boi! -> This week at aXpire there were two separate $AXPR burns: 20k of last week and 200k of this week. Last week’s news recap can be seen here. Congratulations to the team for being conferred the honour of being handed a key to Miami-Dade County by Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez at the 2019 Miami-Dade Beacon Council Annual Meeting & Key Ceremony. aXpire's disruptive solutions like Resolvr (expense allocation), Bilr (invoice management) and DigitalShares (deal marketplace) help hedge funds and PE firms scale through better profit margins. How? Read here. Did you know that the 2gether Ambassador Zone lets you customise referral messages with a #PicOfTheDay while you earn some sweet 2GT rewards? Super cool! There was an upgrade to the platform this week that might have led to a temporary deactivation in withdrawals while the update was being deployed. CEO Ramón Ferraz’s interview by BeInCrypto was released. Founder Salvador Algarra travelled to an ABANCA event for a keynote speech on Fintech innovation. Next week he will be at Rankia's Blockchain and Crypto Tech gathering to speak on "Blockchain, from predicting the future to building it". CardRates’ feature article on 2gether came out this week. The BOMBX:XIO token swap bridge went live. The swap will be open till 15th December. Plus, $XIO is now listed on DDEX and Switcheo. There were some disruptions in the bridge from time to time because of heavy traffic. Hence, the team also set up a manual swap page as an alternative solution. And please be wary of scammers posing as admins to help with the swap instructions. For any doubts, always reach out to accounts with admin tags on the official Telegram channel. The first set of incubated startups will be revealed on the 22nd of November. Ever wanted to find out about the people who frequent the BOMB token chat? Well, the BOMB Board is running a "Humans of Bomb" series to feature some of the most active members. This week, say Hello to Gustavo. Key to Miami-Dade County awarded to aXpire. Cool! WednesdayCoin’s founder Mike floated the idea of making WednesdayClub open on all days. The nature of the $WED token will not change on chain. Just that it will be usable inside the DApp everyday. What do you think? Let him know in the Reddit thread. Birdchain’s $BIRD token was listed on Mercatox this week. A new monthly referral contest was launched as well. 50k BIRD tokens to be won. Nice! Want the SMS feature to be released in your country? Start promoting! A featured article on Chainleak capped off the week perfectly for Birdchain. $ETHOS, $AXPR (aXpire), $HYDRO, $BNTY (Bounty0x) and $HST (Horizon State) were added to the eToro Wallet. The airdrops for Switch’s various token holders were distributed this week. As mentioned earlier as well, $ESH and $SDEX are revenue sharing tokens. Winners of the John McAfee contest and trading competition were announced. Congratulations! Tron blockchain support will be added to the Switch-based McAfeeDex next week. The news was covered by Beincrypto, U Today, Crypto Crunch, Altcoin Buzz and Tron’s Justin Sun as well. The Dex was featured in a Forbes article about John McAfee’s views on Libra. The latest community contest at Fantom involves writing educational articles on the platform. If you have been following Fantom developments, then this would be a breeze. Also, USD 100 in FTM tokens to be won. Sweet! Check out the cool $FTM merch on display at Odd Gems fashion. Even though these are not official gear, they have the blessings from the project. CMO Michael Chen sat down for an interview with Crypto Intelligence India to talk about the upcoming mainnet launch. The crew also appeared for an AMA with Atomic Wallet community. The latest technical update covers "Golang implementation of Lachesis consensus" or Go-Lachesis in short. Check out its demo with 7 nodes here. Parachute presentation (WIP). That’s right. 500k transactions and counting. Wow! While the Uptrennd Halloween contest got over last week, AltcoinBuzz made a friggin amazing graphic! Don’t forget to follow the Ann channel to stay up to date with the latest from Uptrennd. Founder Jeff Kirdeikis also announced that he will be working closely with PrefLogic on Security Tokens. Jeff’s interview with MakerDAO Biz Dev Gustav Arentoft came out. After some upgrades on Uptrennd, withdrawals are live again. Instead of the weekly meme contest, there was a flyer contest this week. 5k $1UP prize pool for winners. Wicked! The latest community picked TA report was on ETH. And the crew reached Malta for the AIBC Summit. More pics next week! Did you know that you can get Opacity Gift Codes for various plans at ShopOpacity.com? If not, make sure to read up on the Opacity October update. Catch up on the latest at District0x from the District weekly. The District Registry was live demo’ed. Looks cool! Hydro crew travelled to the Web Summit in Lisbon to spread word on the project. They were also represented at the Chicago fintech science fair this week. For a summary of the last few weeks gone by at Hydrogen, you can read the Project update and Hydro Labs update. We have covered most of these in previous posts. For the latest scoop on Hydro Labs, there’s always the Ann channel. Silent Notary’s Ubikiri wallet is undergoing upgrades. One of which is, wallets will be auto-named after creation. A ton more upgrades to be released. Sentivate announced a reorganisation in the company in order to devote full focus on Sentivate. The parent company will close and all resources will move to Sentivate. Here’s another use-case story to emphasise the potential of Universal Web. In the latest community vote on Blockfolio, folks voted overwhelmingly Yes on whether they would like to see more explainer articles on web tech. Also, the epic shoutout from Scott Melker (The Wolf Of All Streets) has to be the best thing ever! Updated Sentivate roadmap for next 3 months Pynk travelled to the Web Summit in Lisbon (wonder if they crossed paths with Hydro and SelfKey teams) as an official delegate of the Mayor's International Business Programme and were featured by KPMG. How to catch people’s eyes in a Summit where everyone is trying to grab your attention? With LED back packs. Genius! Such a lit idea, that even Web Summit tweeted it. Woohoo! And then they rocked a series of pitches to get to the big stage. Wins in Round 1 and quarter finals ensured an entry into the semi finals on the main stage. Click here to watch their presentation. Great job guys! Business Insider Poland included Pynk in their list of 12 Fintech companies worth following. The latest Pynk Tank episode delves into deep fakes in political advertising. One of the upcoming features on the platform will be the addition of gold to the daily price prediction tool. Pynk has "absolutely no interest in Bitcoin fanatics, ‘bagholders’ or ANYONE who mentions moons or Lamborghini’s. It’s tacky". This vibes perfectly with Parachute. Read more on Pynk's guide to becoming a super-predictor here. Horizon State announced that it will be resuming business under a new management. Welcome back! The original $HST token will not be supported anymore. The team will be looking into how the token holders are included in the new system. DENGfans, don’t forget to check the mini-projects posted by Mathew in the Telegram channel. Look up #getDENG in the channel. If you’re proficient in excel and VB, get in touch. Shuffle Monster’s $SHUF token is now listed on Dex.ag which acts as a decentralised price aggregator. CyberFM distributed the $CYFM payouts for October this week. Total payout as of 1st Nov is USD 266k+ in crypto. Say what! Pynk’s LED back packs are a stroke of genius OST’s Pepo was the 19th most popular dApp on State of the DApps last week. This week it climbed to the 16th position. Upcoming features on Pepo include video replies, threads and debates. Stay tuned! OST crew was at the Web3 UX Unconference in Toronto to talk all things UX. Next week they will be at ETHWaterloo to present and judge the UX award there. SelfKey’s $KEY token got listed on Hong Kong’s Lukki exchange. Like Hydro, the SelfKey team also attended the Web Summit in Lisbon for networking. If you were there, hope you said Hi. Ever wondered how Distributed Identity keeps your information private and safe when blockchains are supposed to be public? Click here to find out how SelfKey does this. More insight was shared into the Chainlink partnership this week by Constellation CEO Ben Jorgensen. The team attended the Air Force Space Pitch Day where it was selected to pitch the platform to attendees. Go get’em! How and why does Constellation do things? Check out the Constellation Principles. The October update for Yazom covers news such as alpha build of the app nearing completion, ongoing deal negotiation with clients etc. And with that, we close for this week in Parachuteverse. See you again soon. Ciao!
EDIT: Nord is having a 75% off sale AND All plans have 30-day money-back guaranteeYou can claim that deal by using our special link! @ www.buy-nord.com NordVPN has been growing at a very fast pace since launching in 2012, and it’s now one of the largest VPN services on the market with over 12 million customers worldwide (according to NordVPN themselves). NordVPN has grown so much that it now claims to be the “best VPN service provider of 2019” but we all know that’s easier said than done, right? We needed to understand how good NordVPN really is and answer questions our readers have been asking us:
Is NordVPN safe?
How fast is it?
Does it work with Netflix?
Is torrenting and P2P allowed?
Is NordVPN easy to use?
We, therefore, tested it extensively for weeks, and in this detailed review, you will see exactly what we discovered.
But before we dive into it, let's take a quick look at NordVPN’s pros and cons: Pros
Very fast VPN speeds
Log-free & no IP, DNS & WebRTC leaks
Works with Netflix, BBC iPlayer & more
P2P & torrenting allowed on many servers
Huge server network: 5,600+ servers across 60 countries
User-friendly apps for PC, Mac, iOS, & Android with ad-blocker
Alternative VPN protocols have to be manually configured
Obfuscated servers don't always work in China
No obfuscated servers for iOS
Works with Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, Sky, HBO, Torrenting, Kodi Available on Windows Mac Ios Android Linux Price from $2.99/mo Still, want to know more about NordVPN and whether it’s the right VPN for you? We’ve carefully tested every single NordVPN app so you can rest assured that we left no stone unturned. Without further ado, let's get right into this review starting with NordVPN’s speed. Speed & Reliability Very fast speeds across the world NordVPN is a very fast VPN – as long as you connect to nearby VPN servers. It’s not the fastest VPN there is (these VPNs are currently faster), but NordVPN is still very quick and you won’t experience any speed issues. Both same-country (UK server to UK server) download and upload speeds are impressive, with minimal internet slowdown (around a 5-6% drop from our normal internet speeds). This makes NordVPN a very good choice for both streaming fans and torrenters. Speed results from our physical location in London (100Mbps fibre optic connection) to a London test server. Before using NordVPN: DOWNLOAD Mbps 94.83 UPLOAD Mbps 91.8 PING ms 3 When connected to NordVPN: DOWNLOAD Mbps 90.51 UPLOAD Mbps 86.28 PING ms 5 Download speed without NordVPN: 94.83Mbps Download speed with NordVPN: 90.51Mbps Our download speed loss when NordVPN is running: 5% As you can see, NordVPN registered very impressive speeds when we connected to a nearby VPN server. It’s less impressive – but still very usable – over long-distance connections, though. Here are the average download and upload speeds connecting out from the UK to NordVPN’s servers: USA: 47Mbps (download) & 48Mbps (upload) Germany: 78Mbps (download) & 77Mbps (upload) Singapore: 17Mbps (download) & 6Mbps (upload) Australia: 22Mbps (download) & 3Mbps (upload) Ping times are also fairly low on most of NordVPN’s servers, which is good for gaming although there are better VPNs available to gamers. Server Locations Over 5,600 VPN servers spread across 60 countries worldwide Globe with a blue flag 60 Countries Image of a city landscape 90+ Cities Image of a pink marker 5,600+ IP Addresses See all Server Locations NordVPN’s server list covers 60 countries – it isn’t the widest VPN server range we’ve seen, but it should almost certainly ensure there is a server located near you. Screenshot of NordVPN Server List in App NordVPN provides a whopping 5,600 VPN servers, none of which are virtual, with each server given a static IP address. This is the highest number of VPN servers provided by a top VPN service, which is impressive. Even better, NordVPN owns all of the servers in its network. NordVPN’s server network covers all of the popular server locations such as the UK, the US, Australia, and Canada, as well as less common locations including Argentina, Egypt, and Albania. NordVPN provides city-level server choices in five different countries, too: Australia (five locations, 200+ servers) Canada (three locations, 400+ servers) Germany (two locations, 200+ servers) India (two locations, 20+ servers) The US (20 locations, 1,800+ servers) NordVPN used to offer city-level choice in the UK (London and Manchester) but recently removed the Manchester VPN servers as “their performance was lacking.” NordVPN have added even more servers in London in order to ensure the best speeds for those located in the UK. Streaming & Torrenting An excellent choice for streaming & torrenting Thanks to its SmartPlay technology, NordVPN consistently works with popular streaming services like Netflix and BBC iPlayer. To watch Netflix, simply click on the US or UK VPN country server and the NordVPN app will automatically find the best option for you. NordVPN also unlocks loads more Netflix libraries, including Canada, Japan, France, Italy, and Germany. Not all of NordVPN’s UK servers provide access to BBC iPlayer, but a quick message to live chat will let you know which ones are currently working. That will save you the trial-and-error of testing out all of NordVPN’s hundreds of UK servers. This is a big plus, as many other VPN providers can’t unlock BBC iPlayer. Unrestricted access to streaming services doesn’t stop there. Many of NordVPN’s customers use the VPN service to stream: Amazon Prime Video Hulu HBO Sling TV Sky Now TV Torrenting Torrenting (and other P2P traffic) isn’t allowed on every single NordVPN server, but there’s still more than enough server choice to keep torrenters and Kodi streamers happy. You can torrent while connected to almost every country on NordVPN’s server list – these are listed under ‘Speciality Servers’ within in the app settings. However, the following countries do not permit P2P: Argentina Costa Rica Chile Cyrpus Egypt Georgia Indonesia Malaysia South Korea Taiwan Thailand Vietnam Ukraine United Arab Emirates If you attempt to torrent while connected to a VPN server that doesn’t support P2P NordVPN will simply re-route your traffic through a dedicated server located in either Canada or the Netherlands. With plenty of added security features – such as its VPN kill switch – and a no-logs policy, NordVPN is without a doubt one of the safest VPNs for torrenting. Fast uploads and downloads make it a great choice too. Bypassing Censorship Obfuscated VPN servers work in China intermittently Since the VPN crackdown in China, NordVPN has become a little less reliable for residents or visitors in China, but it’s still a pretty good choice of VPN. Users have reported that NordVPN’s obfuscated servers often bypass the Chinese censors, but others have experienced difficulties connecting to them. NordVPN’s obfuscated servers are spread out fairly evenly, with options in North America, North Africa, Asia, and Europe, so you shouldn’t be too far away from one. There are no obfuscated VPN servers available on the NordVPN iOS app, though, so iPhone users may struggle to connect from China without some manual configuration. See our latest VPN recommendations if you’re looking for a reliable VPN for China, or you can read our ExpressVPN review or our VyprVPN review, two of our top choices. That’s just China, though – in other high censorship countries like Saudi Arabia and Russia NordVPN remains a solid VPN choice to bypass censorship. Platforms & Devices Protect all your devices with a wide range of custom VPN apps Apps Windows Logo Windows Mac Logo Mac iOS Logo iOS Android Logo Android Linux Logo Linux Router Logo Router NordVPN has simple native VPN apps for all major operating systems: Windows macOS iOS Android Linux (yes, even Linux) If your device is not compatible with the custom apps above, you can also install NordVPN on your router. What’s more, you can use NordVPN on up to six devices at the same time using just one VPN subscription, which is one of the highest allowances we’ve seen. Games Consoles & Streaming Devices AppleTV Logo AppleTV Amazon Fire TV Logo Amazon Fire TV Chromecast Logo Chromecast Nintendo Logo Nintendo PlayStation Logo PlayStation Roku Logo Roku Xbox Logo Xbox NordVPN has an Android TV app, meaning you can use the VPN app with streaming devices such as Android TV and the Amazon Fire TV Stick without any manual configuration. In fact, NordVPN is one of the best VPNs for the Fire TV although it is not our top recommendation. If you own a Firestick and want to use a VPN app with it, take a look at our roundup of the best VPNs for Fire TV and Fire TV Stick. If you want to run NordVPN on your other streaming devices or games consoles like Xbox and PlayStation, though, you’ll need to install it at router level. It’s not too difficult and it means that all devices connected to the router will be protected. Browser Extensions Chrome Logo Chrome Firefox Logo Firefox NordVPN provides VPN extensions for Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox. These VPN add-ons encrypt your browser traffic, but protection ends there so we always suggest using NordVPN’s extensions in conjunction with the main VPN application or client. The extensions also have an in-built WebRTC leak blocker, which is an extremely useful bonus. NordVPN doesn’t yet have VPN extensions for Safari or Opera browsers. Encryption & Security Secure VPN with advanced features but lacking protocol flexibility Protocol IKEv2/IPSec OpenVPN (TCP/UDP) WireGuard Encryption AES-256 Security DNS Leak Blocking First-party DNS Supports TCP Port 443 VPN Kill Switch WebRTC Leak Blocking Advanced features Double VPN TOR via VPN Server Please see our VPN Glossary if these terms confuse you and would like to learn more. NordVPN has only one choice of VPN protocol by default, but it’s our personal favourite: OpenVPN. The iOS and macOS apps (available to download directly from the Apple App Store) run on IKEv2, though. OpenVPN provides the perfect blend of speed and security. It encrypts all your internet traffic using the ‘unhackable’ AES-256 cypher. Screenshot of NordVPN Settings Menu in App You can also use IKEv2 with NordVPN’s Windows and Android apps if you like, but it requires an extra download and a lot of advanced setup (manual configuration). The VPN kill switch feature protects your IP address in the event of a connection drop, and NordVPN’s privately owned and operated DNS servers ensure end-to-end protection. NordVPN provides Double VPN (multi-hop) and Tor over VPN (Onion over VPN) for extra encryption. As with all the VPN providers we review, we carried out extensive testing to find IP and DNS leaks when using NordVPN and we are happy to report that we found no leaks whatsoever. Screenshot of browserleaks.com test results for NordVPN Leak test results on browserleaks.com while connected to a NordVPN US server. We test from the UK. NordVPN has recently released a new technology for Linux users called NordLynx that’s based on the WireGuard VPN protocol. WireGuard is a new VPN protocol that aims to be faster and more secure than the current standards, but it’s still in development so should be considered experimental at this point. Logging Policy No-logs VPN in a privacy-friendly jurisdiction NordVPN doesn’t log your traffic or store any user logs, making it a safe and trustworthy VPN. Here’s a comprehensive list of all the information it does collect: Server loads That is the full extent of the information NordVPN collects, making it a true no-logs VPN. Server loads are monitored to maintain the optimal performance of VPN servers for users, and nothing else. Your privacy is upheld above all else, and NordVPN absolutely will not sell your personal data to any third parties. Jurisdiction NordVPN was founded in 2012 is operated by Tefincom & Co S.A. which is headquartered under the legal jurisdiction of Panama, putting it beyond the reach of US and EU data retention laws. Panama does not require VPN companies to store or report any of their data, nor is it part of any agreements that compel it to share information with other countries. Being based in Panama gives NordVPN the power to deny any third-party data requests, so there is absolutely no way that any of your online activity can be traced back to you. In 2018, NordVPN came under some heat as it was accused of not being headquartered in Panama. The reason for the controversy is that when you purchased NordVPN on Google Play Store, at the time the Seller of NordVPN was listed as CloudVPN INC. (a company registered in the US), and not Tefincom & Co S.A. It turns out that CloudVPN INC. is a payment processor and NordVPN was simply using it to handle payments, similarly to how other VPN providers use payment processing companies to manage these type of transactions. Ease of Use Quick and easy setup with simple custom apps How to Install & Set Up NordVPN Screenshot of NordVPN Download Button Downloading the software is as simple as going to Nord's website and clicking the download button for the appropriate platform. Screenshot of NordVPN Installation Progress You can check the progress of your installation here, which usually only takes a couple of minutes at most. Screenshot of NordVPN App Login Screen Once the software is installed, all that's left to do is log into the app and you're ready to go. Screenshot of NordVPN Desktop App Main Screen The main NordVPN app view with server locations to the left, which are also presented as pins on the map. Screenshot of NordVPN Specialty Servers On the left-hand side of the app, you can see the full list of server locations and speciality servers for P2P, Double VPN, etc. Screenshot of NordVPN City-Level Servers Hover over a country name and click on the three horizontal dots that appear in order to select a city-level server. Screenshot of NordVPN Connected Screen You will know when NordVPN is working because the server location you are connected to and your new IP address will be displayed at the bottom of the app. Screenshot of NordVPN General App Settings You can find the general settings by clicking 'Settings' at the top of the app. These consist of simple toggles for general settings, including the VPN kill switch. Screenshot of NordVPN Advanced App Settings Scroll down to the bottom of the settings menu to find the advanced options. After confirming that you know what you're doing, you can toggle between TCP/UDP and use obfuscated servers. The NordVPN website has comprehensive VPN setup guides for whatever platform you happen to be using, but it’s unlikely you’ll ever need them. All of NordVPN’s custom VPN apps run smoothly and are almost entirely self-explanatory. If you want to play around with advanced settings then you’re welcome to do that too – they’re clearly labelled and the app even warns you not to do so unless you know what you’re doing. Browser Extensions Screenshot of NordVPN Chrome Extension It couldn’t be much easier to set up NordVPN’s browser extensions – just go to the Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox store and download the add-on to your browser. Once you’ve logged on you can choose a server and connect. We’d recommend enabling ‘Block WebRTC’ from the settings menu to prevent any potential IP leaks. Customer Support Helpful live chat support & useful online resources 24/7 Live chat support Online Resources NordVPN provides excellent quality customer support both through its extensive knowledge base and via online live chat. Email support isn’t as good and we’ve found responses to be slow at times. There is really no reason to email customer support, though, as NordVPN’s live chat service is 24/7. Encounter any issues? NordVPN running slow, perhaps? No problem – support agents respond quickly and are extremely friendly and helpful, managing to fix most of our VPN issues within a couple of minutes. NordVPN’s troubleshooting guides are very useful, too, covering a variety of potential VPN issues and providing a range of possible solutions. Pricing & Deals Fantastic value for money on longer plans NordVPN Coupon NordVPN logo NordVPN Get 58% off NordVPN's 12-month plan TestedEnds 1 Sep Get Code10 Terms NordVPN Pricing Plan NordVPN is one of the best VPN services on the market, and it’s not very expensive at all. Also, every NordVPN price plan offers exactly the same VPN features. NordVPN costs a fairly pricey $11.95 if you pay month-by-month, but the price drops by almost half to $6.99 a month for annual plans. For the biggest savings, NordVPN’s three-year special deal costs just $2.99 per month, a saving of 75%. Monthly US$11.95/mo Billed $11.95 every month 12 Months US$6.99/mo Billed $83.88 every 12 months Save 41% 2 Years US$3.99/mo Billed $95.75 every 2 years Save 66% 3 Years US$2.99/mo Billed $107.55 every 3 years Save 75% All plans have 30-day money-back guarantee This is the best option available, $107 for 3 years coverage is unbeatable in the VPN sector. You can claim that deal by using our special link! @ www.buy-nord.com Payment & Refund Options NordVPN accepts a few different payment options, but it recently made the decision to stop accepting PayPal. The VPN service now uses Adyen for credit card payments, which it claims offers a greater level of privacy for customers due to its self-contained nature. Here are the accepted payment methods, which include some cryptocurrencies for those seeking higher levels of privacy: Credit and debit cards Direct debit Amazon Pay Bitcoin Ethereum Ripple Alipay UnionPay NordVPN no longer comes with a free VPN trial, but it does offer a 30-day money-back guarantee. You can cancel your NordVPN subscription within 30 days by contacting the customer support team through live chat. You will have to go through a troubleshooting process first, but the refund should be processed within 10 business days.
IPVanish is a popular VPN service particularly with Android and Fire TV Stick users, and it makes a very strong claim on its homepage – that it’s the “World’s Best VPN.” Seen this sort of statement before, right? It’s certainly one of the leading VPN providers out there, but is it really the best VPN overall? We never take a provider’s word for it, so we decided to put IPVanish to the test – a very extensive one – to see if its claims are to be believed. We were particularly keen to find out: How good is IPVanish? Is it safe to use? Is IPVanish very fast? Does it work with Netflix? Is torrenting and P2P allowed? Is it the best VPN app for Firestick? But before we answer each of these (and many more) questions, lets see the pros and cons of IPVanish VPN: Pros Cons Very impressive speeds Works with Netflix Great for torrenting & Kodi No-logs policy & no IP/DNS/WebRTC leaks User-friendly apps for PC, Mac, iOS, & Android Good server network across 50 countries Won't work with BBC iPlayer, or in China Short refund period Based in privacy-unfriendly US Desktop app could be more user-friendly Works with Netflix, HBO, Torrenting, Kodi Available on Windows Mac Ios Android Linux Price from $4.87/mo As you can see IPVanish certainly does have many strengths to shout about. It’s now time to take a very close look at the attributes and features of each IPVanish app, starting with how fast it is. Speed & Reliability IPVanish is a consistently fast VPN IPVanish is a very fast VPN service, with some of the quickest speeds we’ve seen in our tests. IPVanish didn’t slow down our connection too much, and it is more than fast enough for HD or 4K streaming. Speed results from our physical location in London (100Mbps fibre optic connection) to a London test server. Before using IPVanish: DOWNLOAD Mbps 93.76 UPLOAD Mbps 97.58 PING ms 2 When connected to IPVanish: DOWNLOAD Mbps 84.13 UPLOAD Mbps 90.33 PING ms 7 Download speed without IPVanish: 93.76Mbps Download speed with IPVanish: 84.13Mbps Our download speed loss when IPVanish is running: 10% Downloads, uploads and latency when using IPVanish are among the best we’ve seen, making this VPN a very smart choice for gamers and torrenters alike. It’s also one of the most reliable VPN services we’ve seen, providing consistently fast speeds from one test to the next. Here are the average speeds you can expect when using IPVanish to connect out to various locations around the world (from the UK): USA: 53Mbps (download) & 37Mbps (upload) Germany: 76Mbps (download) & 81Mbps (upload) Singapore: 25Mbps (download) & 2Mbps (upload) Australia: 24Mbps (download) & 6Mbps (upload) Server Locations Over 40,000 IP addresses across 77 locations Globe with a blue flag 50 Countries Image of a city landscape 77 Cities Image of a pink marker 40,000+ IP Addresses See all Server Locations IPVanish VPN gives access to more than 1,300 servers worldwide and over 40,000 IP addresses, which is one of the highest numbers of IP addresses we’ve ever seen. This means that you’re unlikely to experience VPN server congestion and slow speeds while connected to IPVanish. The 50 countries in IPVanish’s VPN server network are well spread-out, including some less common nations like Moldova and the Philippines (in addition to all the typical countries like US, UK, Canada, Australia, and more). List of IPVanish server locations IPVanish provides its customers with city-level options in the US (19 cities), UK (4), Canada (3) Australia (2) and Brazil (2). US-based users can choose from IPVanish servers in: Central – Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Jackson, Milwaukee, St. Louis East – Ashburn, Atlanta, Boston, Cleveland, Miami, New York West – Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Phoenix, Salt Lake City, San Jose, Seattle We’d love to see more city-level selections in Australia – mainly Perth which is located on the West coast – and more server options in South America, where only Brazil and Colombia are served. The high number of VPN servers in IPVanish’s network is enough to offset these minor complaints, though. IPVanish is one of the few VPN providers to own its entire (or very close to) server infrastructure, meaning they rent very few servers from third-parties. Streaming & Torrenting Excellent choice for torrenting & Netflix Despite IPVanish being one of the fastest VPNs we’ve seen, it’s just not a great VPN for streaming. Most of IPVanish’s US servers work for Netflix, although it can occasionally take a while to load, but all of its UK servers are currently blocked by BBC iPlayer and according to IPVanish they are not looking to work on fixing this. If streaming BBC iPlayer is important to you, read through our dedicated guide or take a look at our NordVPN or CyberGhost reviews, two VPN services that work well with BBC iPlayer. IPVanish has also confirmed it isn’t working with Amazon Prime Video or Hulu at the moment. Torrenting IPVanish is, however, one of the best VPN services for torrenting we’ve tested, with very fast speeds and a watertight logging policy. Torrenting is permitted on all of its servers and when we checked for IP/DNS leaks, we found none. Not to mention that it has a VPN kill switch, but more on this below. Therefore, we recommend IPVanish VPN for all P2P activity including Kodi for which IPVanish is currently the #1 VPN service. Bypassing Censorship No good for China IPVanish is very upfront in saying that the VPN service won’t work in China, despite being equipped with an array of obfuscation tools. We really appreciate IPVanish’s honesty on this topic. IPVanish also provides a useful list of other countries the VPN won’t work in: you can find this on the support section of the IPVanish website. List of IPVanish banned countries IPVanish states that it is “forbidden to do business in”: Myanmar Cuba Iran North Korea Sudan Syria IPVanish states that its domain, ipvanish.com, is blocked in: Qatar Saudi Arabia United Arab Emirates (UAE) China Kazakhstan It’s not just IPVanish’s domain that is blocked in these countries, and many users have reported that IPVanish’s apps don’t work either. If you live or are travelling to a high censorship country then we suggest you consider using VPN services like ExpressVPN or VyprVPN to bypass aggressive internet censors. Platforms & Devices Works with all major platforms & devices Apps Windows Logo Windows Mac Logo Mac iOS Logo iOS Android Logo Android Linux Logo Linux Router Logo Router IPVanish has custom VPN apps for all popular mobile and desktop operating systems so you can use them on: PCs Apple Macs iPhones Android devices You can also setup IPVanish on other devices using manual workarounds (see the ‘Games Consoles & Streaming Devices’ section below). Games Consoles & Streaming Devices AppleTV Logo AppleTV Amazon Fire TV Logo Amazon Fire TV Chromecast Logo Chromecast Nintendo Logo Nintendo PlayStation Logo PlayStation Roku Logo Roku Xbox Logo Xbox IPVanish is a good VPN to use with gaming consoles and streaming devices. IPVanish is our number 1 VPN pick for the increasingly popular Amazon Firestick, and it’s super easy to install and use. You can also use IPVanish on 10 devices at once, which is very generous (the average among the top VPN services is about 5 simultaneous connections). You can also install IPVanish on your home router so that all your internet traffic at home is protected. Browser Extensions Unfortunately, IPVanish doesn’t have any VPN browser extensions, which is a shame and one of the very few areas where it seriously lags behind its competitors. If you want to use a VPN extension with your web browser then take a look at our: Best VPN extensions for Chrome Best VPN addons for Firefox Encryption & Security One of the safest providers we’ve reviewed Protocol IKEv2/IPSec L2TP/IPSec OpenVPN (TCP/UDP) PPTP Encryption AES-256 Security DNS Leak Blocking First-party DNS IPV6 Leak Blocking Supports TCP Port 443 VPN Kill Switch Advanced features SOCKS Please see our VPN Glossary if these terms confuse you and would like to learn more. We believe that IPVanish is one of the most secure and private VPN services available. IPVanish mainly uses the OpenVPN and IKEv2 protocols and encrypts your online traffic with the ‘unbreakable’ AES-256 cipher, meaning you’re protected at all times. You can also connect using L2TP/IPsec, if you’d prefer. IPVanish has a VPN kill switch to protect your privacy in case of a connection drop, plus a host of other advanced features to secure your web browsing. This includes SOCKS5 web proxy, which masks your IP address during P2P and VoIP connections – although this doesn’t encrypt traffic. We also found IPVanish to be extremely safe, and free of IP or DNS leaks in our most recent tests: IPVanish leak test results from browserleaks.com IPVanish’s leak test results when connected to its Chicago server Logging Policy No-logs policy makes up for US jurisdiction IPVanish doesn’t collect any user data at all, making it a no-logs VPN service. Considering most VPN logging policies track at least server load or login information for maintenance purposes, this is what makes IPVanish a standout VPN for privacy. In 2016, when under previous management, IPVanish was however found to be collecting logs when it handed information over to US authorities to aid in the prosecution of a user. Since being acquired a number of times since then, IPVanish has turned things around and we have no longer concerns about its approach to user privacy. Jurisdiction IPVanish VPN was first released in 2012 by its former US-based owner HighWinds Network Group. IPVanish has since been acquired by StackPath and in 2019 by J2 Global which are both US-based companies. As you can see IPVanish is, and has always been, operated by companies headquartered in the US, which does have very intrusive surveillance laws and is a member of the Five-Eyes data sharing agreement. IPVanish being based in the US is largely irrelevant though as its no-logs policy means no identifiable information is collected by the VPN provider. Ease of Use User-friendly install with lots of advanced features How to Install & Set Up IPVanish Screenshot of the Windows download button on the IPVanish website Beginning the installation process is as simple as clicking the button to download the relevant software from the site. Screenshot of the progress of our IPVanish Windows download You can check the progress of the installation here, but it usually only takes a couple of minutes from start to finish. Screenshot of the completed IPVanish download Once the software is downloaded, you'll see this screen which prompts you to run the IPVanish app. Screenshot of IPVanish's main dashboard on its Windows app IPVanish main dashboard shows key connection info and permits server selection. We like the nice graph too. Screenshot of IPVanish's server list in the Windows app Power users will select servers from the main dashboard rather than the server list as it's a slicker experience. Screenshot of the server location filters in the IPVanish desktop app IPVanish server list view with filters - it's mostly pretty good but not as optimal as using the main dashboard. Screenshot of the advanced settings in IPVanish's desktop app IPVanish is rich with advanced settings for customizing connections and it's well laid out to boot. Nice! IPVanish’s desktop VPN apps are perfectly simple to use, even if they could do with a bit of a visual overhaul as they are starting to look a little out-dated. The advanced privacy settings are also easy to navigate, making IPVanish suited to both VPN beginners and more experienced users. The mobile IPVanish apps lack a few key features, such as the VPN kill switch, but they do still provide a very good, user-friendly experience. Customer Support Helpful support with 24/7 live chat 24/7 Email support Online Resources We found IPVanish customer support agents to be friendly and helpful no matter what we asked them about the VPN service. Thanks to a recent update, IPVanish now also has 24-hour live chat support on its website. IPVanish also has excellent email support, which provided us with impressively well-written responses, as well as an online FAQ for straightforward solutions to the most common issues. If for any reason IPVanish isn’t working properly, you should be able to fix it quickly by following these guides. Pricing & Deals Well worth it for the level of service IPVanish Coupon IPVanish logo IPVanish Get 60% off IPVanish's 12-month plan TestedEnds 22 Aug Get CodeED Terms IPVanish Pricing Plan IPVanish is reasonably priced and affordable. It is neither the cheapest VPN service, nor the most expensive. You can pay for IPVanish monthly or on an annual basis. $4.87 per month on the 12-month plan is a very good price, especially as it’s 60% cheaper than the standard one-month plan, priced at $11.99. There’s also a 3-month option for $6.75 per month. Monthly US$7.50/mo Billed $7.50 for the first month Save 38% 3 Months US$6.75/mo Billed $20.24 for the first 3 months Save 44% 12 Months US$4.87/mo Billed $58.49 for the first 12 months Save 60% All plans have 7-day money-back guarantee Payment & Refund Options The IPVanish seven-day money-back guarantee is 100% no-questions-asked and refunds your money within 10 working days. Our only issue is with IPVanish’s iOS policy – if you sign up for an IPVanish login via the iOS Store then you don’t qualify for the money back guarantee. IPVanish only accepts credit cards, debit cards, and PayPal. Unfortunately neither cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin nor international options like Alipay are currently accepted.
An open letter to the community - We need to put our money where our mouths are and support decentralization and dApps
Hey everyone, As I'm sure you all know full well, early adoption of crypto is primarily speculative trading, so this post is gonna focus mainly on the problems with trading in this space right now (centralized exchanges, regulations, lack of investment products, etc), and how we can shift our mindsets as a community to put our money where our mouth is and rally behind startups doing the right things (decentralized exchanges, dApps, protocols and necessary infrastructure). Why? Because for the first time in history we have a disruptive new technology that can really change the landscape in every industry imaginable, and we are at the stage where we're planting the seeds of these new products and companies, so why not support the right ones so we can realize the future we're all envisioning? I recently wrote an article on this on Hackernoon here: https://hackernoon.com/its-time-to-address-the-massive-problems-of-centralized-exchanges-ac2cfb66bef8, but I thought I'd expand on it and share my thoughts on how to move this space forward in terms of getting more dApp adoption and usage.
Who uses dApps anyways?
Blockgeeks just published a report on dApp usage for those interested, there is definitely some growth but since the bear market it has definitely tapered off: https://blockgeeks.com/guides/report-dapps-november-2018/ It's obviously nowhere near mainstream adoption, but it's a great start, so there's hope! There's definitely a ton of things that should immediately be addressed and are of high importance IMO, so I'm going to lay them out:
First, we need to address the massive problems of centralized exchanges
Bitcoin aside, the crypto space as a whole is still pretty young, the current experience of trading crypto assets is understandably a fragmented experience with scattered pockets of liquidity, and a highly technical and high friction process. But the irony is that we have the technology to avoid the security flaws that plague centralized exchanges and the adoption of crypto - decentralized trading. There are a ton of centralized exchanges available to the public today, but a much smaller subset of these exchanges are properly regulated, not to mention trustworthy and reliable. I know the pro traders out there might say, "Well DEXes aren't fast enough, or I can't run bots on them yet". That's fair, but if you want to see them succeed some day, every trade helps. If it's a trade that you think is executable on a DEX, do it there instead of on a centralized one. That's how adoption happens, one user at a time. While industry pioneers like Coinbase have pushed the space forward and newer entrants like Binance raised the bar for the alt-coin trading experience, the industry still suffers from constant hacks and malicious acts. We need to stop relying on centralized trading/hot wallets as they are huge security risks As far as we know, over $1 billion worth of crypto assets have been hacked & stolen from centralized exchanges in 2018 alone. Here's the biggest incidents in 2018:
$500 million worth of NEM stolen from Coincheck — The 2nd largest exchange in Japan
$195 million hacked from BitGrail — Italian exchange and the first to list Nano (I myself was a victim of this)
$45 million hacked from Binance — One of the largest global exchanges
$40 million stolen in Coinrail hack — A boutique exchange in South Korea
$60 million hacked from Zaif — Exchange in Japan
The root cause of this is that centralized wallets are increasingly large honeypots. The nature of a centralized exchange dictates that some trusted third party is storing the crypto assets of its users to create a pool of liquidity, this being done mostly by aggregating funds into exchange-owned digital wallets where assets from users are pooled into. Millions of people could lose not just money but also their identity and data handed over to centralized exchanges as well. While we're still in a bear market this may not happen as frequent, but it's reasonable to be expect that in the next bull-run the frequency and severity of attacks will only rise and a scenario in which an attack as widespread as the recent 50 million user Facebook hack — where both private data and money were stolen — could happen. There's already plenty of exchanges that are careless with handling user identity, handing over your personal ID is not a trivial matter and exchanges should follow the best practices to store and secure them if they're asking for them.
Second, we need clearer, more sensible regulation that fosters innovation and protects investors
This may be an unpopular opinion around these parts, but sensible regulation is good for both the industry and users, to ensure exchanges coming online meet certain requirements, so we're not operating and trading in this wild wild west of shady exchanges. People who trade today need to have a pretty damn high appetite and tolerance for risk, not to mention an acute ability to discern legitimate investments from the rampant exit scams and phishing attacks. (Just see yesterday's thread about the guy's dad who bought into Onecoin on the advice of a "friend"). The vague stance on the part of governments also means many crypto startups operate in a regulatory grey area (I have first hand experience with this working in the space). The SEC only recently clarified that they view Bitcoin and Ethereum as not a security token, meaning it wouldn’t be subject to existing securities laws. IMO the current lack of regulatory clarity has lead to a low barrier of entry for operating crypto exchanges, however this is starting to change as seen with the recent EtherDelta SEC charges, they're clearly making a statement now that you need to follow the laws when you open an exchange. But we can do better, and push lawmakers to create more defined rules that we need to play by, and at the same time educate them so they understand not just the technology, but the implications and potential use cases and how we can get there while allowing companies to innovate, new startups to rise, all while protecting consumers. That way we'll have more legal clarity as the industry matures that is business friendly.
Third, we need a more diversified set of investment products/options for crypto. More wealth generated = more growth and adoption
Up until recently, you were only able to purchase tokens on their own from an exchange. Today, we are starting to see an emergence of basic index funds such as the new Coinbase Bundle and Bitwise. It wasn’t until late 2017 that we saw the introduction of Bitcoin Futures from CBOE and CME. We expect new companies to continue entering this arena, especially crypto ETFs (ie: Bakkt in Jan 2019 maybe?), as well as other attempts at index funds or derivatives. There's a bunch of teams doing great stuff:
Bitwise - They're one of the first crypto index funds
Hodlbot - Another index fund
Shrimpy - A way to automatically invest and rebalance your portfolio
LakeProject - Working on AI driven investments that automatically build a portfolio for anyone (R&D phase)
Lastly, we need to punish greed and reward companies doing the right things
While it’s not a problem particularly limited to centralized exchanges, it’s been reported that listing a token can cost as much as $3 million. In contrast, listing a stock on NASDAQ costs $125k to $300k plus annual maintenance fees. This is just one example of the greed exhibited by those who have leverage and the middlemen who stand to profit in between (consultants, brokers, ICO firms, etc). These high fees dampen innovation as they’re too great of a cost to bear for most token/ICO projects. This is crucial for most projects as they need liquidity to bootstrap their network and to remain favourable with the community that invested in them. At least 7 of the top 10 exchangesengaging in excessive wash trading from 12x to over 100x their true volume. Foul play Plenty of centralized exchanges have been suspected and accused of wash trading (creating fake volume), insider trading, and price manipulation. High user trading fees As centralized exchanges carry more risk, and have more opaque control of their platform, they often charge higher fees compared to a decentralized exchange. Withdrawal limits Centralized exchanges impose a withdrawal limit, as a security measure to limit the amount that can be withdrawn at once. However, there’s also a misalignment of incentives, as they stand to benefit when you keep your funds locked on their platform so they can maximize trading fees There's a bunch of great projects and base layer infrastructure that people should look into and support, not just the protocols but also startups building on top of them, some of my fav protocols include:
0x Project - Powering decentralized exchanges for tokens, NFTs, etc
Set protocol - These guys are building a protocol to allow anyone to easily bundle any assets to create more sophisticated investment products
dYdX Protocol - This allows anyone to integrate margin trading and derivatives in their dApp
Dharma protocol - This protocol facilitates lending in a decentralized way
Compound protocol - A money market protocol that allows hodlers to earn interest on their tokens
Cosmos Network - Working on blockchain interoperability and tooling around Ethereum and Web3
Personally I'm working in one of the many, many startups in the space trying to build on top of these decentralized infrastructures to give everyone a more seamless experience to access, trade, and use crypto. But you can imagine how hard it is to gain any traction much less build a sustainable business especially in a bear market like this, and when everyone has either completely lost their motivation or still flocking to centralized exchanges to chase pumps knowing full well the risks and unethical practices. Cool story, what are you doing about it? I work with a team called the LakeProject, and we're a group of people that came together because we believe that decentralized platforms will address a lot of these concerns, so we're putting our money where our mouth is and building them. If you want to help or learn more about what we're doing here's our site: http://lakeproject.co. We also built our first decentralized product here which is a trading platform built on 0x: https://trade.lakeproject.co
In conclusion - Vote with your money and your time, it makes a difference
I hope this post made sense and I made somewhat of a decent case (?) on why we need to shift our mindset from simply trading and hodling to proactively choosing where to participate, what dApps to use, and which startups to support. IMHO this is key for adoption and it will seriously help startups (like ours) to grow and be able to make a difference in the industry and push forward and pioneer a new paradigm of operating a decentralized business. I think everyone in the space right now is still learning and trying to understand how that might look in the future, but the more support and usage we get, the sooner we'll learn and the brighter our future will be. If you've gotten this far, thanks for putting up with my clickbaity title and reading this thread :)
Daily analysis of cryptocurrencies 20191019(Market index 41 — Fear state)
https://preview.redd.it/o50t8itz0jt31.png?width=796&format=png&auto=webp&s=a3c936483280c2b878df98140cab14b7aef11a69 PBoC’s YI Gang Met With Bank Of England Governor, Discussing Digital Currency Citing Jin10, YI Gang, Governor of the People’s Bank of China (PBoC), the country’s central bank, has met with Mark Carney, Governor of Bank of England, to exchange views on several fields like Brexit, financial cooperation, and digital currency. COT Report: BTC Market Controlled By The Short Positions Citing the latest Commitments of Traders (COT) report on Bitcoin released by the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), Asset Managers’ accounts that reflect the buyer group witness a recovery in the long positions. Long positions of Dealers’ accounts now see an increase, which indicates that the price may reach the bottom. In general, the short positions currently controlled BTC market. #Eurasia Summit# Emin Gün Sirer: New Protocols Will Change DeFi Game And Promise Which Is Delivered In Dream Istanbul today (Oct 19) welcomes its second day of the Eurasia Blockchain Summit jointly held by Huobi and Kemer Partners. Speaking in the conference, Emin Gün Sirer, professor of Cornell University, founder of AVA Labs, co-founder of bloXroute and co-director of the Initiative for Cryptocurrencies and Contracts (IC3), talked about the three phases of the blockchain evolution and brought a gift home — AVA Private Testnet. It has a comprehensive ecosystem, including the native token, the token platform, the community governance as well as the DApp platform. “New protocols will change the DeFi game and the promise which actually is delivered in the dream. We are looking for the broad community involvement, no matter with researchers and developers or both on the platform and on the application layer,” he added. NY District Court Postpones Telegram’s TON Hearing To 2020 The United States District Court for the Southern District of New York has postponed the hearing regarding the Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) injunction filing against Telegram Open Network (TON) and its Gram token to Feb 18–19, 2020. It said: “IT IS ORDERED that Defendants shall not offer, sell, deliver, or distribute ‘Grams’ to any person or entity, until the conclusion of the hearing scheduled by the Court for February 18 and 19, 2020 (‘Hearing’), except upon further order of the Court or agreement of the parties. At the Hearing, any party may move the Court for the continuation or dissolution of this Order.”
Encrypted project calendar（October 19, 2019）
PI/PCHAIN Network:The PCHAIN (PI) backbone (Phase 5, 82 nodes, 164, 023, 802 $ PI, 7 candidates) will begin on October 19.LINK/ChainLink:Diffusion 2019 will be held in Berlin, Germany from October 19th to 20thDeepBrain Chain (DBC):19 October 2019 (or earlier) Deploy Main Chain “Deploy Main Chain,” during the third week of October.General Event (CRYPTO):and 1 other 19 October 2019Free State Blockchain “This “unconference” style event brings together some of the top financial tech innovators, researchers, company leaders, and other…”PCHAIN (PI):19 October 2019 Main Chain Voting “Main chain: Epoch 5, 82 nodes, 164,023,802 $PI, 7 Candidates, voting will start on Oct. 19th.”Nash Exchange (NEX):19 October 2019 Nash Anniversary Nash will present their work from the third quarter of 2019. Team members will be present and to answer your questions in person.
Encrypted project calendar（October 20, 2019）
GameCredits (GAME):20 October 2019 (or earlier) Mining Reward Drop GameCredits mining reward will be cut in half at block 2519999 (~October 20). This will be the 4th halvening of the GAME mining reward!Aeternity (AE):20 October 2019 Starfleet 3 App Deadline #Starfleet3 is happening in Malta and you have by October 20th to apply!FN/IPFS&Filenet:IPFS&Filenet (FN) will be launched on the UP project Filenet (FN). The UP subscription time is from 14:00 on October 20, 2019 to 18:00 on October 20, 2019.
Encrypted project calendar（October 21, 2019）
KNC/Kyber Network:The official online hackathon of the Kyber Network (KNC) project will end on October 21st, with more than $42,000 in prize money.Horizen (ZEN):21 October 2019 Sidechains Alpha Release Horizen releasing the alpha version of industry first decentralized and unfederated sidechains.Horizen (ZEN):21 October 2019 Updated Whitepaper Horizen releasing an updated whitepaper.Kuverit (KUV) :IDAX will list #Kuverit (KUV) and open trading for KUV/BTC trading pair. is going to be listed on 21 Oct, at 10:00 am (UTC+8).
Encrypted project calendar（October 22, 2019）
ZRX/0x:The 0x protocol (ZRX) Pantera blockchain summit will be held on October 22.Locus Chain (LOCUS):22 October 2019 Public Test Begins Public test runs for three days from October 22nd to October 24th.IOTA (MIOTA):22 October 2019 EclipseCon Europe Next week, join Lewis Freiberg, our Director of Ecosystem, to learn how to build an ecosystem around IoT focused distributed ledgers.
Encrypted project calendar（October 23, 2019）
MIOTA/IOTA:IOTA (MIOTA) IOTA will host a community event on October 23rd at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles with the theme “Connecting the I3 Market and Experiencing Purchase and Sales Data.”BTC/Bitcoin:The WBS World Blockchain Summit (Middle East) will be held in Dubai from October 23rd to 24th.Cardano (ADA) and 1 other:23 October 2019 WBS Dubai “One of a kind gathering of 500+ curated & pre-qualified investors, CEOs, CIOs, CTOs, Heads of Blockchain, Chief Digital OfficersCloakCoin (CLOAK):23 October 2019 (or earlier) CloakCoin Competition “CloakCoin competition : solve the CloakCoin ENIGMA transaction, 3rd round.”Loom Network (LOOM):23 October 2019 Singapore Meetup “Unstack the Stack Series: Loom Network” from 6:30–8:30 PM (SST).
Encrypted project calendar（October 24, 2019）
BCN/Bytecoin:Bytecoin (BCN) released the hidden amount of the Bytecoin block network on October 24.Horizen (ZEN):24 October 2019 Weekly Insider Team updates at 3:30 PM UTC/ 11:30 AM EDT: Engineering, Node network, Product/UX, Helpdesk, Legal, BD, Marketing, CEO Closing thoughts, AMA.ANT/Aragon: Aragon (ANT) Aragon Network will hold the theme “DAO: ICO and DeFi next step” in Hong Kong on October 24th?DATA/Streamr DATAcoin:Streamr DATAcoin (DATA) Streamr Network Technology Exchange and Project Development Conference will be held in London on October 24th.Lisk (LSK):24 October 2019 Coding Workshop — Berlin “During this workshop you will acquire the skills to create custom transactions with the Lisk Alpha SDK using Node.js.”
Encrypted project calendar（October 25, 2019）
ADA/Cardano:Cardano (ADA) The Ada community will host a community gathering in the Dominican Republic for the first time on October 25.Crypto.com Coin (CRO):25 October 2019 Live AMA with CEO “Live AMA with our CEO@Kris_HKon@cryptocom’s Twitter next Friday, 25 October, 11AM HKT.”
Encrypted project calendar（October 26, 2019）
KAT/Kambria:Kambria (KAT) Kambria will host the 2019 Southern California Artificial Intelligence and Data Science Conference in Los Angeles on October 26th with IDEAS.BTC/Bitcoin:CoinAgenda Global Summit will be held in Las Vegas from October 26th to 28thHorizen (ZEN):26 October 2019 (or earlier) ZEN 2.0.19 Upgrade Zen 2.0.19 upgrade at block #610000, which is expected around October 26.
Encrypted project calendar（October 27, 2019）
ICON (ICX):27 October 2019 Money 20/20 USA Event Money 20/20 USA in Las Vegas from October 27–30.
Encrypted project calendar（October 28, 2019）
LTC/Litecoin:Litecoin (LTC) 2019 Litecoin Summit will be held from October 28th to October 29th in Las Vegas, USABTC/Bitcoin:Mt.Gox changes the debt compensation plan submission deadline to October 28ZEC/Zcash:Zcash (ZEC) will activate the Blossom Agreement on October 28thStellar (XLM):28 October 2019 Protocol 12 Upgrade Vote Horizon v0.22.0 has been released, which supports Protocol 12. This gives everyone ample time to prepare for the Protocol 12 upgrade voteCelsius (CEL)and 3 others: 28 October 2019 Litecoin Summit “…The Litecoin Summit offers two fun, jam-packed days with something for everyone.”
Encrypted project calendar（October 29, 2019）
BTC/Bitcoin:The 2nd World Encryption Conference (WCC) will be held in Las Vegas from October 29th to 31st.ICON (ICX):29 October 2019 Decentralization “As a result, the decentralization schedule of the ICON Network has been changed from September 24, 2019 to October 29, 2019.”Ark (ARK):and 10 others 29 October 2019 WCC 2019 Second annual Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Technology event, World Crypto Conference (WCC), October 29th — October 31, 2019.Insifa (ISF):29 October 2019 Prototype Alpha “We from Insifa have decided to be more open. Our Prototype will be developed in scrum. This means new releases every two weeks.”
Encrypted project calendar（October 30, 2019）
MIOTA/IOTA:IOTA (MIOTA) IOTA will host a community event on October 30th at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles on the topic “How to store data on IOTA Tangle.”TRON (TRX):30 October 2019 SFBW19 Afterparty “TRON Official SFBW19 Afterparty from 7–10:30 PM in San Francisco.”Horizen (ZEN):30 October 2019 Horizen Quarterly Update Join our first Quarterly Update on October the 30th at 5 PM UTC/ 1 PM EST. Deeper look into Engineering, BD, Marketing, and more.Aeternity (AE):30 October 2019 Hardfork “The third hardfork of the æternity Mainnet is scheduled for October 30, 2019.”Valor Token (VALOR):30 October 2019 Transaction Fees Resume “It’s September and the SMART VALOR Platform is still waiving transaction fees for all members, until October 30th!”Aragon (ANT):30 October 2019 Singapore Meetup “Aragon on DAOs and DeFi” from 6:30–8:30 PM.Kambria (KAT):30 October 2019 Outliers Hashed Awards Outliers Hashed awards from October 30–31.Ethereum Classic (ETC):30 October 2019 Cohort Demo Day “ETC Labs hosts it’s 2nd Cohort Demo Day. Learn about the companies and project being accelerated through the Ethereum Classic ecosystem.”
Encrypted project calendar（October 31, 2019）
Spendcoin (SPND):31 October 2019 (or earlier) Cross Ledger Mainnet “Cross Ledger Mainnet Release and SPND Token Swap,” during October 2019.Spendcoin (SPND):31 October 2019 (or earlier) Blkchn University Beta “Blockchain University Beta goes live,” during October 2019.Stellar (XLM):31 October 2019 (or earlier) Minor Release “We will have 6 Minor Releases in 2019; one each in February, March, May, June, August, and October.”Bitcoin SV (BSV):31 October 2019 (or earlier) BSV Conference Seoul No additional information.Seele (SEELE):31 October 2019 (or earlier) Public Network Mainne launch has been moved to Oct 31 .Howdoo (UDOO):31 October 2019 (or earlier) Howdoo Live on Huawei Howdoo begins its exciting partnership with Huawei with listing as a featured app starting in October.Chiliz (CHZ):31 October 2019 (or earlier) App Soft Launch Soft launch of Socios App by end of October.Dent (DENT):31 October 2019 (or earlier) Loyalty Program “Afterburner loyalty program launch for all 21,6 Million mobile #DENT users will be in October!”IceChain (ICHX):31 October 2019 (or earlier) Wallet Release IceChain releases wallet during October.Chiliz (CHZ):31 October 2019 (or earlier) New Partnerships New sports and new teams joining Socios (+more updates and events) will be announced in the upcoming weeks.Horizen (ZEN):31 October 2019 Weekly Insider Team updates at 3:30 PM UTC/ 11:30 AM EDT: Engineering, Node network, Product/UX, Helpdesk, Legal, BD, Marketing, CEO Closing thoughts, AMA.PCHAIN (PI):31 October 2019 (or earlier) New Website No additional information.IOST (IOST):31 October 2019 (or earlier) New Game on IOST “Eternal Fafnir, a new role-playing game developed by INFUN is coming to you in Oct.”
Encrypted project calendar（November 1, 2019）
INS/Insolar:The Insolar (INS) Insolar wallet and the redesigned Insolar Block Explorer will be operational on November 1, 2019.
Encrypted project calendar（November 6, 2019）
STEEM/Steem:The Steem (STEEM) SteemFest 4 conference will be held in Bangkok from November 6th to 10th.
Encrypted project calendar（November 8, 2019）
BTC/Bitcoin:The 2nd Global Digital Mining Summit will be held in Frankfurt, Germany from October 8th to 10th.
Encrypted project calendar（November 9, 2019）
CENNZ/Centrality:Centrality (CENNZ) will meet in InsurTechNZ Connect — Insurance and Blockchain on October 9th in Auckland.
Yesterday, there was a downside extension in bitcoin below the $8,000 support area against the US Dollar. BTC price traded to a new monthly low at $7,915 and settled below the 100 hourly simple moving average. Recently, there was an upside correction above the $8,000 level. Moreover, the price recovered above the $8,020 level, plus the 23.6% Fib retracement level of the last decline from the $8,386 high to $7,915 low. However, the upward move was capped by the $8,100 and $8,120 resistance levels. Besides, the price failed to test the 50% Fib retracement level of the last decline from the $8,386 high to $7,915 low. As a result, there was a fresh decline below $8,020. The price is now accelerating declines below the $8,000 level. It even broke the last swing low at $7,915 and traded to a new monthly low near $7,850. Review previous articles:https://firstname.lastname@example.org Telegram： https://t.me/Lay126 Twitter：https://twitter.com/mianhuai8 Facebook：https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100022246432745 Reddi：https://www.reddit.com/useliuidaxmn LinkedIn：https://www.linkedin.com/in/liu-wei-294a12176/
My Entrepreneurial Journey from McDonald's burger flipper to Investment Adviser
I started at McDonald's when I was 17 years old in the hopes of saving up and buying a car. Sadly, this was just about my only significant financial goal for the next 10 years of my life outside of trying to save up for an ounce to save on weed money. I did what most a lot people seem to do today, live life by the minute. I watched tons of shows and put thousands of hours into video games. I worked as little as possible. I'd snicker at everyone and have my stupid little lines when people would point out my lack of career progress. "I work to live, not live to work, man!" In my entire 10 years at McDonald's, I had a surprising amount of opportunity for advancement. I met my best friend here, we started the same week and forged our friendship on the heat of the grease traps, side by side. The difference was, he actually had a little bit of ambition. Within a year, he was technically my boss as a crew chief. Not much responsibility, not much of a pay raise either, but he proved himself. Within another year he was a shift manager. I was making $7.35 because minimum wage had just gone up. So, after 2 years, I was still only making minimum wage. He had a $2 an hour raise and was up to $9.50 or so. No big deal I told myself, it's not worth the hassle and who wants to work 40 hours a week at a bullshit job anyway? This would continue to be a pattern. Every year or other year he would get some sort of promotion, and I would stay exactly where I was. He was an assistant manager making $36k annually, then a store manager making $50k after bonuses. He had finally made it I thought. He'd come in and everyone would try to look busy, and I'd just watch him walk back to the office while scraping the grease off the grill for the millionth time. I still continued to delude myself into thinking I was happy as I raced home as soon as possible after a 3-hour shift so I could get back to doing pretend work in my virtual escape. We still got along great, even hung out after work sometimes still. But his next promotion brought him out of the store and we lost touch around this time. As an area supervisor his pay went up considerably, I never asked what exactly, but he had a company car, and all the benefits you can shake a stick at. Meanwhile, it'd been 8 years or so and I was barely making $8.50 an hour and working 20 hours a week still.
The Bitcoin Bubble
Then I got my first break seemingly on a whim in mid-2017. I had been following Bitcoin off and on for years and noticed somewhat early on it was taking off. I started working a few more hours just so I could buy more bitcoin. I bought a total of about $1,000 and made over 10x that. Then I invested in some smaller alt-coins at the right time and made another 10x. For the first time in my life, I experienced financial success. Video games no longer mattered; I had found a new game and it was a lot more rewarding. I spent all my free time researching investment strategies for cryptocurrency. Then it all came crashing down. So I had made capital gains of over $100,000. Awesome right? Well, it would have been if I hadn't lost half of it thinking the market would pick back up. And you owe taxes on the full gains even if you lose half of it. You might think still have about $50k, and I would have if I hadn't spent all but about $5,000 on renting a nice house, weed, prostitutes (I'm not even proud of this, if you'd seen the quality in my area you wouldn't be either), clothes, and the beefiest home computer money could buy. I had made $100,000 in the matter of a couple of months, I went a little nuts okay? So $5,000, that's plenty to pay your taxes right? At my current financial status, I'd be homeless in 3 months because my rent was way more than I could afford. I had some work to do. Making money on cryptocurrency investments was seemingly over, so I looked to traditional investments. I opened a Robinhood account and was doing okay. It's very different from the wild days of Bitcoin though, no 1,000% gains in a matter of weeks. I was lucky to get 5%, and my McDonald's wages were laughable as always. This just wasn't going to cut it, at this rate I'd be in jail in a couple of years for not paying taxes… So I had a new set of skills, maybe I could take advantage of it. I was actively making money on investments and I had learned so much in the last year about investing. I was much more familiar with the jargon and I could actually hold a conversation about the subject. I knew more about investing than anyone else I knew personally, at least. Then I took these skills and did some research for jobs in my area on this job search site. I was amazed to see the kind of salary I could get with some of the skills I had been working on.
Senior investment support specialist $120k salary
Wealth management client service leader $95k
Associate Wealth Management Advisor $80k-$100k.
Digging My Way Out of this Hole
It took me a few weeks to put this together in my head. At first, I thought "Okay, I'll go to Community College and then transfer to the university and in a few years I can get one of these trainee positions at Wells Fargo." Then I remembered Uncle Sam was lingering overhead with the $20k that I owed him. I didn't have time to do things the right way. So I did things a different… way. I planned it all out. I got my Master of Finance degree in about 2 weeks for $180 from this company that prints diplomas. I was actually really impressed by the quality and customization options. They pretty much put whatever you tell them you want on it, so I made sure to do some research and put something that will hold up to a little scrutiny. I really considered just making a website for a private university, so I put together a limited budget and a list of things I'd need and went to have a few web designers bid on it. I was informed by a really nice team that this wasn't really a possibility since getting a .edu site isn't going to work. I was pleasantly surprised because if the tables were turned, I can't say I wouldn't have tried to milk me for every dime I had. I spent all my free time taking courses on Skillshare and read some highly recommended books from Charlie Munger that I found on /investing. I was absolutely determined to pass myself off as someone who had years of education and experience in the field. I even watched the movie "Catch Me If You Can". Then I shifted my focus, I was sure I had the basic know how to pass myself off as an "expert". Now I needed to just wow them into not digging too deep. I needed to have a stellar resume, knock their socks off in the interview, and the part I hadn't figured out yet believable references. I used this site to make a really nice looking resume. I didn't hold back on my qualifications either. I was going all out and presenting myself as the perfect candidate, well deserving of the position and the salary it commands. The professional references problem was actually the biggest wall I hit. At first, I thought I could have my friends do it, but they're all a bunch of McDonald's lifers like me and it would be immediately obvious they weren't the executives they were supposed to be. I thought about having my area supervisor friend help, but he'd only be 1 guy and we weren't as close anymore. It's actually asking a lot of people. Then I found a site that does exactly this as a service. I was skeptical at first, thinking they probably weren't native English speakers, or wouldn't sound any more professional than my friends would. So I reached out and asked if we could do a call to get a feel for them. They gave me the number, a US number I might add, and I called. A young woman picked up and answered "Office of Mr. Suchandsuch, how can I help you?" I smiled ear to ear, I knew then and there I might just be able to pull this thing off! I finally felt confident about it all and I really needed this confidence boost, because I was about to be sitting in a room with lifelong professional investors and convince them to give me a hundred grand a year when I spent the night before cleaning puke in the bathroom at the McDonald's across town. So to give myself the best chance, I knew I was going to have to apply to a lot of places. I submitted my resume for over 50 different positions and I got interviewed at well over half of them. I halfway expected to not get any calls at all, I thought "Surely it can't be this easy to become an executive investment consultant." So I rented a nice suit for all the days I was interviewing, I actually had a hard time keeping track of which places I had to be at and when. One day I went to 4 different interviews. I rented a nice suit and hoped no one would see me get out of my 20-year-old beater car. I interviewed at banks, investment firms in tall buildings, and even remotely for smaller angel investment groups. Then it happened. I got my first conditional job offer. I was already thinking about how I could negotiate the salary while I was reading the offer then it hit me like a sack of bricks. "This conditional job offer is extended to Gary Newman, it's contingent upon the candidate successfully passing the background check. Background information such as criminal and driving history, plus credit reports for some jobs will help to determine if the candidate is qualified to do the work." My stomach sank, I'm going to jail, "There's no way I'm going to get a job or pay all these taxes." I told myself. My first thought was to run, the guy from Catch Me If You Can managed to stay on the run for years and years, no that's stupid. Don't fold your hand just yet. Only one so far has said anything about a background check. So I called them and withdrew my application explaining I had taken another offer that I couldn't pass up. They understood, and I hoped they wouldn't take it any further. So for every place that said anything about a background check, I just withdrew my application and thanked them for their time. It was far from a perfect solution, but my back had been against the wall for so long now I was starting to get used to it. I wondered if all this effort was for nothing, I was so stupid for not thinking about background checks. Surely all of them would do them, right? They're cheap and it weeds out little scumballs like me.
Laziness Creeps Up Even the Tallest Towers
Lucky for me I was wrong. Not even half of the companies I applied for did background checks or if they did, they didn't do it very thoroughly. I was flabbergasted. So I negotiated with the 6 job offers I ended up with, out of over 50 that I applied to. I was very happy with the numbers, especially with the salary I was being offered. I negotiated up to $105,000. Not bad considering the year before I had pulled in a whopping $7,000. I saved as much as I could and worked as hard as I could. This whole experience had taught me so much. With enough effort, it's pretty incredible the kinds of things you can pull off. I still sweat every day thinking someone is going to find out and I'm going to lose it all even though it's been over a year. I just tell myself all I can do is work hard and try to be so valuable that they won't care if they ever do find out. And who knows? Maybe this writing thing will help me write a book while I'm in prison. For now though, when the couple of closest friends who know the story of how I went from a burger flipper to an investment executive overnight ask me how Vandelay Industries is? I tell them in my best Costanza impression: "I can't complain!"
It can be very time consuming to keep up to date on a single blockchain project let alone multiple ones. If you just heard about NEO a few weeks ago it would be impossible catch up on past occurrences due to high volume of Reddit posts and articles made on the project. I’m going to try and simplify the past, present and future as much as I can into one well thought-out post. I hope I can be helpful to anyone who has been investigating like myself. I will include sources with all of my research. https://imgur.com/a/NBI7S (img for mobile backround) Key notes from the White Paperhttp://docs.neo.org/en-us/ Digital Assets Digital assets are programmable assets that exist in the form of electronic data. With blockchain technology, the digitization of assets can be decentralized, trustful, traceable, highly transparent, and free of intermediaries. On the NEO blockchain, users are able to register, trade, and circulate multiple types of assets. Proving the connection between digital and physical assets is possible through digital identity. Assets registered through a validated digital identity are protected by law. Digital Identity Digital identity refers to the identity information of individuals, organizations, and other entities that exist in electronic form. The more mature digital identity system is based on the PKI (Public Key Infrastructure) X.509 standard. In NEO, we will implement a set of X.509 compatible digital identity standards. This set of digital identity standards, in addition to compatible X.509 level certificate issuance model, will also support Web Of Trust point-to-point certificate issuance model. Our verification of identity when issuing or using digital identities includes the use of facial features, fingerprint, voice, SMS and other multi-factor authentication methods. Smart Contracts The NeoContract smart contract system is the biggest feature of the seamless integration of the existing developer ecosystem. Developers do not need to learn a new programming language but use C#, Java and other mainstream programming languages in their familiar IDE environments (Visual Studio, Eclipse, etc.) for smart contract development, debugging and compilation. NEO's Universal Lightweight Virtual Machine, NeoVM, has the advantages of high certainty, high concurrency, and high scalability. The NeoContract smart contract system will allow millions of developers around the world to quickly carry out the development of smart contracts. Economic Model NEO has two native tokens, NEOand NeoGas NEO represents the right to manage the network. Management rights include voting for bookkeeping, NEO network parameter changes, and so on. The minimum unit of NEO is 1 and tokens cannot be subdivided. GAS is the fuel token for the realization of NEO network resource control. The NEO network charges for the operation and storage of tokens and smart contracts, thereby creating economic incentives for bookkeepers and preventing the abuse of resources. The minimum unit of GAS is 0.00000001. Distribution Mechanism NEO's 100 million tokens are divided into two portions. The first portion is 50 million tokens distributed proportionally to supporters of NEO during the crowdfunding. This portion has been distributed. The second portion is 50 million NEO managed by the NEO Council to support NEO's long-term development, operation and maintenance and ecosystem. The NEO in this portion has a lockout period of 1 year and is unlocked only after October 16, 2017. This portion WILL NOT enter the exchanges and is only for long-term support of NEO projects. The plans for it are as below: ▪ 10 million tokens (10% total) will be used to motivate NEO developers and members of the NEO Council ▪ 10 million tokens (10% total) will be used to motivate developers in the NEO ecosystem ▪ 15 million tokens (15% total) will be used to cross-invest in other block-chain projects, which are owned by the NEO Council and are used only for NEO projects ▪ 15 million (15% total) will be retained as contingency ▪ The annual use of NEO in principle shall NOT exceed 15 million tokens GAS distribution GAS is generated with each new block. The initial total amount of GAS is zero. With the increasing rate of new block generation, the total limit of 100 million GAS will be achieved in about 22 years. The interval between each block is about 15-20 seconds, and 2 million blocks are generated in about one year. According to this release curve, 16% of the GAS will be created in the first year, 52% of the GAS will be created in the first four years, and 80% of the GAS will be created in the first 12 years. GAS will be distributed proportionally in accordance with the NEO holding ratio, recorded in the corresponding addresses. NEO holders can initiate a claim transaction at any time and claim these GAS tokens at their holding addresses. Consensus mechanism: dBFT The dBFT is called the Delegated Byzantine Fault Tolerant, a Byzantine fault-tolerant consensus mechanism that enables large-scale participation in consensus through proxy voting. The holder of the NEO token can, by voting, pick the bookkeeper it supports. The selected group of bookkeepers, through BFT algorithm, reach a consensus and generate new blocks. Voting in the NEO network continues in real time, rather than in accordance with a fixed term. Cross-chain assets exchange agreement NeoX has been extended on existing double-stranded atomic assets exchange protocols to allow multiple participants to exchange assets across different chains and to ensure that all steps in the entire transaction process succeed or fail together. In order to achieve this function, we need to use NeoContract function to create a contract account for each participant. If other blockchains are not compatible with NeoContract, they can be compatible with NeoX as long as they can provide simple smart contract functionality. Cross-chain distributed transaction protocol Cross-chain distributed transactions mean that multiple steps of a transaction are scattered across different blockchains and that the consistency of the entire transaction is ensured. This is an extension of cross-chain assets exchange, extending the behavior of assets exchange into arbitrary behavior. In layman's terms, NeoX makes it possible for cross-chain smart contracts where a smart contract can perform different parts on multiple chains, either succeeding or reverting as a whole. This gives excellent possibilities for cross-chain collaborations and we are exploring cross-chain smart contract application scenarios. Distributed Storage Protocol: NeoFS NeoFS is a distributed storage protocol that utilizes Distributed Hash Table technology. NeoFS indexes the data through file content (Hash) rather than file path (URI). Large files will be divided into fixed-size data blocks that are distributed and stored in many different nodes Anti-quantum cryptography mechanism: NeoQS The emergence of quantum computers poses a major challenge to RSA and ECC-based cryptographic mechanisms. Quantum computers can solve the large number of decomposition problems (which RSA relies on) and the elliptic curve discrete logarithm (which ECC relies on) in a very short time. NeoQS (Quantum Safe) is a lattice-based cryptographic mechanism. At present, quantum computers do not have the ability to quickly solve the Shortest Vector Problem (SVP) and the Closest Vector Problem (CVP), which is considered to be the most reliable algorithm for resisting quantum computers. Reasons for choosing dBFT over PoW and PoS: With the phenomenal success of Bitcoin and its increasing mainstream adoption, the project’s unbounded appetite for energy grew accordingly. Today, the average Bitcoin transaction costs as much energy as powering 3.67 average American homes, which amounts to about 3000 times more than a comparable Credit Card settlement. This mind boggling amount of energy is not, as it is commonly believed, being wasted. It is put to good use: securing the Bitcoin network and rendering attacks on it infeasible. However, the cost of this security mechanism and its implications for an increasingly warming and resource hungry planet led almost the entire crypto industry to the understanding that an alternative has to be found, at least if we’re interested in seeing blockchain technology gaining overwhelming mainstream adoption. The most popular alternative to PoW, used by most alternative cryptocurrency systems, is called Proof-of-Stake, or PoS. PoS is highly promising in the sense that it doesn’t require blockchain nodes to perform arduous, and otherwise useless, cryptographic tasks in order to render potential attacks costly and infeasible. Hence, this algorithm cuts the power requirements of PoS blockchains down to sane and manageable amounts, allowing them to be more scalable without guzzling up the planet's energy reserves. As the name suggests, instead of requiring proof of cryptographic work, PoS requires blockchain nodes to proof stake in the currency itself. This means that in order for a blockchain node to be eligible for a verification reward, the node has to hold a certain amount of currency in the wallet associated with it. This way, in order to execute an attack, a malevolent node would have to acquire the majority of the existing coin supply, rendering attacks not only costly but also meaningless, since the attackers would primarily harm themselves. PoS, as well as PoW, simply cause the blockchain to fork into two alternative versions if for some reason consensus breaks. In fact, most blockchains fork most of the time, only to converge back to a single source of truth a short while afterwards. By many crypto enthusiasts, this obvious bug is very often regarded as a feature, allowing several versions of the truth to survive and compete for public adoption until a resolution is generated. This sounds nice in theory, but if we want to see blockchain technology seriously disrupt and/or augment the financial sector, this ever lurking possibility of the blockchain splitting into two alternative versions cannot be tolerated. Furthermore, even the fastest PoS blockchains out there can accomodate a few hundred transactions per second, compare that to Visa’s 56,000 tx/s and the need for an alternative becomes clear as day. A blockchain securing global stock markets does not have the privilege to fork into two alternative versions and just sit and wait it out until the market (or what’s left of it) declares a winner. What belongs to whom should be engraved in an immutable record, functioning as a single source of truth with no glitches permitted. After investigating and studying the crypto industry and blockchain technologies for several years, we came to the conclusion that the delegated Byzantine Fault Tolerance alternative (or dBFT) is best suited for such a system. It provides swift transaction verification times, de-incentivises most attack vectors and upholds a single blockchain version with no risk of forks or alternative blockchain records emerging - regardless of how much computing power, or coins an attacker possesses. The term Byzantine Fault Tolerance (BFT) derives its name from the Byzantine Generals problem in Game Theory and Computer Science, describing the problematic nature of achieving consensus in a distributed system with suboptimal communication between agents which do not necessarily trust each other. The BFT algorithm arranges the relationship between blockchain nodes in such a way that the network becomes as good as resilient to the Byzantine Generals problem, and allows the system to remain consensus even if some nodes bare malicious intentions or simply malfunction. To achieve this, Antshare’s version of the delegated BFT (or dBFT) algorithm acknowledges two kinds of players in the blockchain space: professional node operators, called bookkeeping nodes, who run nodes as a source of income, and users who are interested in accessing blockchain advantages. Theoretically, this differentiation does not exist in PoW and most PoS environments, practically, however, most Bitcoin users do not operate miners, which are mostly located in specialized venues run by professionals. At Antshares we understand the importance of this naturally occurring division of labor and use it to provide better security for our blockchain platform. Accordingly, block verification is achieved through a consensus game held between specialized bookkeeping nodes, which are appointed by ordinary nodes through a form of delegated voting process. In every verification round one of the bookkeeping nodes is pseudo-randomly appointed to broadcast its version of the blockchain to the rest of the network. If ⅔ of the remaining nodes agree with this version, consensus is secured and the blockchain marches on. If less than ⅔ of the network agrees, a different node is appointed to broadcast its version of the truth to the rest of the system, and so forth until consensus is established. In this way, successful system attacks are almost impossible to execute unless the overwhelming majority of the network is interested in committing financial suicide. Additionally, the system is fork proof, and at every given moment only one version of the truth exists. Without complicated cryptographic puzzles to solve, nodes operate much faster and are able to compete with centralized transaction methods. https://www.econotimes.com/Blockchain-project-Antshares-explains-reasons-for-choosing-dBFT-over-PoW-and-PoS-659275 OnChain It is important to note the technical difference between Onchain and NEO. Onchain is a private VC-backed company with over 40 employees. NEO is a public platform with different community-led groups contributing to this public project. There exists NEO council comprised of the original NEO creators, employees from Onchain, full time NEO council members and there is also the first Western based group called City of Zion. This confusion is likely the source of the rumour about Antshares and Alibaba having a connection. Onchain and NEO are separate entities who are intimately related via cross-chain communications and similar designs. Onchain, a Shanghai-based blockchain R&D company, first started developing Antshares in February of 2014 which will eventually become the foundation of DNA. Onchain was founded by CEO Da HongFei and CTO Erik Zhang in response to the attention from private companies garnered by the development of Antshares, China’s first public blockchain. In contrast to the weeks-old start-ups launching ICOs that is happening currently in the blockchain world, it took them 22 long months of R&D to even begin providing services to their first customers. Finally, in April 2016, the first whitepaper on consensus protocol from China was born — the dBFT (delegated Byzantine Fault Tolerance) protocol. 2016 was a busy year for Onchain and they really picked up the pace that year. Other than continuing the development of Antshares, brushing shoulders with Fortune 500 companies, Onchain became the first Chinese blockchain company to join Hyperledger — an open source blockchain project started by the Linux Foundation specifically focusing on the development of private and consortium chains for businesses. It is here where the Da HongFei and Erik Zhang, entered the hyperbolic time chamber that is now known as Fabric, a platform by Hyperledger for distributed ledger solutions, and has consequently helped them to develop many aspects underpinning the design of DNA. In June of 2016, during the first of many future partnerships with Microsoft China, Onchain founded Legal Chain specifically targeting the inadequacies of the digital applications within the legal system. In 2005, (Digital Signature Act) was passed into national law which permitted an effective digital signatures to gain the same legal rights as a real signature. In company with Microsoft China, they are also aiming to integrate the technology with Microsoft’s face and voice recognition API function to kick start this digital revolution within the legal system. At the same time, a partnership was formed with FaDaDa, a third-party platform for electronic contracts that has processed over 27 million contracts to date, to provide secure evidence storage with DNA. If that’s not enough, they were also voted as KPMG’s top 50 Fintech Company in China and established a relationship with the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry which led to the recent tour to Japan. Finally, at the end of 2016 they announced a partnership with Alibaba to provide attested email service for Ali Cloud with Legal Chain where it provides a proof-of-existence for a blockchain-powered email evidence repository for enterprise-level use. Fosun Group, China’s largest private conglomerate, have recently invested into Onchain in order to apply DNA across all of its businesses. Currently, Fosun International has a market cap of 102.98 billion dollars on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange and that is only its international branch. The role of Onchain so far is reminiscent of Ethereum’s EEA in addition to a stronger emphasis of governmental cooperation. Onchain has identified the shortcomings of present laser focus of hype on public platforms such as NEO and Ethereum and addressing that with DNA. DNA envisions a future where a network of assorted, specifically designed blockchains serving private enterprises, consortiums, government and the public communicating with each other forming an interconnected blockchain network. This is the goal of DNA — infiltrating every little inefficient niche that had no better alternatives before the invention of blockchain. What is especially critical to remember during this explosive time of hype driven partly by the obscene degree of greed is that not every little niche that blockchain can fill will be holding its own little ICO for you to “go to the moon on your rocket powered lambos”. Some of those efficiencies gained will simply be consumed by companies privately or by public systems such as the legal system. https://hackernoon.com/neo-onchain-and-its-ultimate-plan-dna-4c33e9b6bfaa http://www.onchain.com/ https://github.com/DNAProject/DNA https://siliconangle.com/blog/2016/10/20/onchain-partners-with-alibaba-for-blockchain-powered-email-evidence-repository/ https://www.reuters.com/article/us-fosun-blockchain/chinas-fosun-invests-in-local-version-of-bitcoin-tech-blockchain-idUSKCN1B30KM City of Zion (CoZ) City of Zion (CoZ) is a global community of open source enthusiasts, with the shared goal of helping NEO achieve its full potential. CoZ primarily operates through the community Slack and CoZ Github, central places where the community shares knowledge and contributes to projects. CoZ is neither a corporation, nor a consulting firm or a devshop / for-hire group. Members https://imgur.com/a/Gc9jT CoZ aims to be low barrier of entry, the process is straightforward:
Join the channel #develop.
Fork or create a project.
Publish as open source.
After a couple of contributions a CoZ council member will invite you to the proper channel for your contributions.
Receive rewards and back to 3.
Unit testing - Ongoing effort to implement code coverage for the core Integration testing - Tools for automated testing, performance metrics and functionality validation on private test nets Continuous integration - Automated multi-platform testing of all pull requests at GitHub. Deployment pipeline - Automated tools and processes to ensure fast and reliable updates upon code changes New C# implementation (NEO2) - Improve code quality, speed & testability Roadmap https://imgur.com/a/4CDhw dApps competition https://cityofzion.io/dapps/1 10 prizes of 1350 GAS, with 500 GAS to be used for smart contract deployment. Currently 19 dApps registered. Deadline is 16 of November 11:59 EST. https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/0B4wu5lNlukwybEstaEJMZ19kbjQ Traveling August 8th to August 12th: From August 8th to August 12th, 2017, the NEO core team, led by founder & CEO Da Hongfei will travel to Japan to explore the forefront of Japan's Blockchain innovation. This trip represents the first in a series of trips around the world with the goal to foster international cooperation's and to keep up with the fast pace in Blockchain innovation. Starting in Japan, the NEO core team will visit famous local Blockchain research institutions and active communities to engage in bilateral communication. NEO will meet with Japanese tech-celebrities to gain insights about the latest developments in the Japanese Blockchain and digital currency community. Additionally, Japanese local tech media will conduct an interview allowing NEO to present its development status and its latest technological innovations. https://www.reddit.com/NEO/comments/6ry4s9/japan_the_neo_core_team_starts_out_on_an/ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SgTQ32CkxlU https://www.reddit.com/NEO/comments/6ssfx1/neo_meetup_in_tokyo_august_10th_2017_2100h/ 19th August, 2017 Blockchain X Series - NEO example applications 20th August, 2017 NEO and Microsoft Azure host a blockchain programming training in Shanghai 23rd August, 2017 INNOxNEO Blockchain Open Nights: 2nd Meeting 24th August, 2017 NEO Meetup in Taipei https://www.reddit.com/NEO/comments/6wbebneo_taipei_meetup_long_post/ 13th September, 2017 INNOxNEO Blockchain Open Nights: 3rd Meeting 14th September, 2017 NEO Shanghai Meetup with NEO team 24th September, 2017 NEO Blockchain Programming Day - Hangzhou Station 27th September, 2017 INNOxNEO Blockchain Open Nights: 4th Meeting 27th September, 2017 First London NEO Developer Meetup! 4th October, 2017 First San Francisco NEO Developer Social! 14th-16th October, 2017 GNOME.Asia Summit 2017, Chongqing, China 21st October, 2017 NEO JOY, Exploring Blockchain application, Nanjing, China 26th October, 2017 Inaugural Global Fintech & Blockchain China Summit 2017 Networks proves itself with the first ICO ICOs, on other platforms such as Ethereum, often resulted in a sluggish network and transaction delays. While NEO’s dBFT consensus algorithm is designed to achieve consensus with higher efficency and greater network throughputt, no amount of theoretical calculations can simulate the reality of real-life conditions. --Key Observations-- Smart Contract Invocations: A total of 13,966 smart contracts invocations were executed on the NEO network over this time period, of which, nearly all called the RPX smart contract method mintTokens. A total of 543,348,500 RPX tokens were successfully minted and transferred to user accounts, totalling 10,097 smart contract executions. Refunded Invocations: A total of 4182 refund events were triggered by the smart contract method mintTokens. (Note: RPX has stated that these refunds will be processed within the next two weeks.) Crowdsale statistics: A successful mintTokens execution used around 1043 VM operations, while an execution that resulted in a refund used 809 VM operations. Within the hour and six minutes that the token sale was active, a total of 12,296,409 VM operations were executed. A total of 9,575 unique addresses participated in the RPX ICO. Half of these, approximately 4,800 unique addresses, participated through CoZ’s Neon wallet. The top 3 blocks with the most transactions were block 1445025 (3,242 transactions), block 1444902 (2,951 transactions), and block 1444903 (1609 transactions). Final Thoughts At the moment, the consensus nodes for the NEO network are operated by the NEO Council in China. By Q1 2018, NEO Council aims to control less than two-thirds of the consensus nodes. We are pleased to note that the NEO network continuted to operate efficiently with minimal network impact, even under extreme network events. Block generation time initially slowed down to 3 minutes to process the largest block, but quickly recovered to approximately 25 seconds. Throughout the entire RPX ICO, consensus nodes were able to achieve consensus and propagate new block transactions to the rest of the network. In closing, while we consider this performance to be excellent, NEO Council and City of Zion areworking closely together on upgrades, that will increase the throughputs of the NEO network. Hyperledger Members and governance of Hyperledger: Early members of the initiative included blockchain ISVs, (Blockchain, ConsenSys, Digital Asset, R3, Onchain), well-known technology platform companies (Cisco, Fujitsu, Hitachi, IBM, Intel, NEC, NTT DATA, Red Hat, VMware), financial services firms (ABN AMRO, ANZ Bank, BNY Mellon, CLS Group, CME Group, the Depository Trust & Clearing Corporation (DTCC), Deutsche Börse Group, J.P. Morgan, State Street, SWIFT, Wells Fargo), Business Software companies like SAP, Systems integrators and others such as: (Accenture, Calastone, Credits, Guardtime, IntellectEU, Nxt Foundation, Symbiont). The governing board of the Hyperledger Project consists of twenty members chaired by Blythe Masters, (CEO of Digital Asset), and a twelve-member Technical Steering Committee chaired by Christopher Ferris, CTO of Open Technology at IBM. http://www.8btc.com/onchain-hyperledger https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hyperledger “As a leading open-source contributor in China’s blockchain community, Onchain shares the same values as the Linux Foundation and the Hyperledger project intrinsically. We believe international collaboration plus local experience are key to the adoption of distributed ledger technology in China; we are also very excited to see other Chinese blockchain startups join Hyperledger and look forward to adding our combined expertise to the project.” Da Hongfei, Founder and CEO of Onchain https://hyperledger.org/testimonials/onchain Important Articles Distribution technology DNA framework went through the national block chain standard test On May 16th, the first China block chain development competition in Hangzhou announced that Onchain, became the first through the national standard test block system. http://www.51cto.com/art/201705/539824.htm?mobile Da Hongfei and OnChain working relationship with Chinese Government https://finance.sina.cn/2017-04-13/detail-ifyeifqx5554606.d.html?from=wap http://www.gz.chinanews.com/content/2017/05-28/73545.shtml The Chinese government is reportedly preparing to allow the resumption of cryptocurrency trading in the country in the coming months, with the required anti-money laundering (AML) systems and licensing programs in place. https://coingeek.com/cryptocurrency-trading-poised-to-make-a-return-in-china-report/ Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry - Working with OnChain and NEO http://www.8btc.com/onchain-ribenjingjichanyesheng Notice NEO will be invited to attend the INNO x Austrade China-Australia chain high-end exchange AUSTRADE - The Australian Trade and Investment Commission is the official government, education and investment promotion agency of the Australian Government https://mp.weixin.qq.com/s/LmXnW7MtzOX_fqIo7diU9A Source for NEO/OnChain Microsoft Cooperation: http://www.8btc.com/onchain-microsoft Da Hongfei quotes
"There is no direct cooperation between Alibaba and NEO/Onchain, other than their mailbox service is using Law Chain to provide attested email service. In terms of Microsoft, yes we have cooperation with Microsoft China because NEO is built with C# and .NET Core, and NeoContract is the first in the world to support writing smart contract with C#"
"We have pretty good communication with government, with regulators. They don't have any negative impression with NEO and they like our technology and the way we deal with things. Regulation is not an issue for us"
“Before they started cleaning up the market, I was asked for information and suggestions” “I do not expect the government to call me in the short-term and say, ‘Let’s use NEO as the blockchain technology infrastructure of China.’ But in the medium term? Why not? I think it’s possible.”
https://medium.com/@TheCoinEconomy/neo-founder-da-hongfei-advised-china-on-ico-exchange-ban-says-govt-4631b9f7971 -Upcoming Roadmap- Decentralization of consensus nodes ▪ P2P Network optimization (2017Q4) – Network optimizations to ensure fast block generation after decentralization. ▪ Voting Algorithm Optimization (2017Q4) – Adjustments in voting algorithm to prevent identified attack vectors. ▪ Candidate List Website (2018Q1) – Published list of candidates so that voters know who they are voting for. ▪ NEO Council Consensus Node < 2/3 (2018Q1) – NEO Council shall operate less than two thirds of consensus nodes by the end of quarter 1, 2018. Universal Data Format for Wallet/Node Prog. ▪ NEP2 – Private Key Encryption/Decryption (2017Q4) - Method for encrypting and encoding a passphrase-protected private key. ▪ NEP3 – Universal Data Format (2017Q4) – Standard data format to allow easier wallet and node programming. https://neo.org/en-us/blog/details/65 Promotion/Ecosystem ▪ Globally Legal Token-raising Framework (2017Q4) – Following government interest to regulate ICO’s, NEO will complete a framework to raise tokens legally in all major markets by the end of 2017. ▪ NEO DevCon 1 (2017Q4) – First NEO Development Conference! More details at later date. ▪ CoZ Funding (2017Q4) – Continuous funding plan for CoZ covering next 5 years. ▪ Seed Projects (2017Q4) – First seed projects to be cross-invested with the dedicated NEO pool. https://neo.org/en-us/blog/details/65 https://github.com/neo-project Repositories - 14 People - 5 Contributors- 12 https://github.com/CityOfZion Repositories - 35 People - 14 Contributors- 22 https://github.com/DNAProject/DNA Repositories - 4 Contributors - 17 Donations welcome: ASdNxSa3E8bsxCE9KFKBMm3NA43sYJU9qZ
The entire Bitcoin network now consumes more energy than a number of countries, based on a report published by the International Energy Agency. If Bitcoin was a country, it would rank as shown below. If Bitcoin was a country, it would rank as shown below. Bitcoin’s price volatility surged in March, rising sharply as the digital currency suffered severe losses amid a widespread sell-off in assets. Bitcoin Plus has one million coins in circulation, in comparison to 21 million Bitcoins. It has a much faster block processing time and can handle eight times more transactions than Bitcoin. Mills highlights the Bitcoin Plus annual commitment of 20 percent until all 1 million coins are staked. Risk Factors” in the Annual Report on Form . 10-K. for the year ended December 31, 2019, filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on March 20, 2020 (the “Annual Report”). 2020, which consisted of the net realized and unrealized loss on investment in Bitcoin, plus the Sponsor’s Fee of $11,793. Net assets increased to A traditional self-directed IRA through Kingdom Trust, for example, comes with a $225 annual account cost, plus a 0.25% holding fee, which is capped at $1,500 a year.
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