Perspective

ETF what is it and how it effects Bitcoin

An exchange-traded fund is a vehicle in which to trade a commodity or index without literally purchasing the physical good. This means you can buy or sell physical goods like crude oil without having the greasy oily barrels stacked up in your backyard next to the lemon tree. This opens up the doors for an institutional sized amount of money to be freely traded back and forth between parties. This creates a speculation market on a scale that previously was not possible.

So how does this effect Bitcoin? An argument thrown around the crypto sphere is that for Bitcoin to become mainstream and see its true potential, it needs to be accepted by “big brother” which is a governmental authority. This is what has been happening for the last year in crypto. Many big names in the industry like the Winklevoss twins who became famous for their dispute with Mark Zuckerberg over Facebook are now pushing the paperwork forward to the Security Exchange Commision which overseas the legitimacy of new assets or commodities that are proposed for mainstream trading through an ETF. Up until now every proposition from private companies to push Bitcoin into the publicly traded arena has failed. This is for some people considered to be the last step in Bitcoin going mainstream because of the safety of Institutional money (trillions of dollars) trading Bitcoin without having to worry about storing the private keys to their crypto wallets and risk making a mistake and losing their large sums of money through a typo.

Up until now the institutional money which dwarfs the current market cap of Bitcoin immensely by the trillions is being kept at bay, but for how long? There are multiple other big-name institutions applying for Bitcoin to be traded as an ETF and hence grasp its legitimacy that is recognized by a governmental authority and possibly reach prices of $100,000 per Bitcoin.

The question that is debated that overlooks all of this is, “Does Bitcoin even need this when its true reason for creation was to step over corrupt government systems anyway?”. Time will tell but the main thing to remember is that ETF or not, Bitcoin isn’t going away no matter how much world governments ignore its progression or decline its right to be traded by everyone, anywhere, freely.

CourseWork

Reflection, Course Work Blog 1

When I go to a website for a specific purpose, either to choose a product I’m wanting to buy or an article I’m interested in reading, there is nothing worse than being overwhelmed with irrelevant information to the purpose I was originally seeking.

This post in & of itself is not cryptocurrency related. I’m imagining someone who has recently subscribed to my website’s CRYPTO BLOG arriving to find this article of reflection and being rather confused. This is a small part of my blogging research for a tertiary class I am undertaking and kind of defeats the theme I was going for with the layout of the blog.

I like to have immediate information presented to me after clicking a link. That is why I have chosen a theme that hides almost everything except the blog post you are focusing on. The sidebar hides away but still presents the title BifoCrypto at the top of any page in the site to let the reader know they are still at the right location. The most likely option a reader will do is click directly on a blog post link. There is no confusing sidebar text that has to be determined not relevant or a massive menu with lots of hierarchical submenus. It is just the article with a title, some noninvasive color themes that are easy reading with an option to like, share or comment at the bottom of the post. And only then if the reader has finished absorbing the content they originally came for, they are presented with a triple line symbol in the top left-hand corner indicating there is more content if they wish to pursue it. I don’t believe in tricking people into content they do not wish to see and in my opinion has the opposite effect of annoyance/frustration. The user is always one click away from leaving your site.

This is the way I think I portray myself in the real world with an opinionated but humble persona without inforcing information onto people that do not want it. The cryptocurrency enthusiast (as I class myself), is known for this bad habit of forcing the information at any gap in the conversation, relevant or not, they usually find a way to turn any convo into a crypto rant. So if someone asks me a question about crypto I have no problem answering, but in terms of the sidebar menu theme I have chosen for this blog, I won’t continue unless genuine interest to hear more is established.

Scams

FOMO3D

The Ethereum network was created on July 30, 2015. This network created a protocol and platform to create any imaginable software application in a decentralized environment utilizing smart contracts.

Smart contracts are a form of securing a certain routine of events at a very particular time or from a trigger that is programmatically guaranteed. This has incredibly expansive possibilities. One of these smart contracts has blown my mind on what a Ponzi scheme can achieve and openly acknowledging the fact. A Ponzi scheme is a recognized buzzword that brings thoughts of losing money and a small original group that is getting rich from the top of the scheme. Fomo3D takes this to a whole new level with the power of smart contracts in Etherum. The difference in this scenario which is utilizing smart contracts as opposed to a real-world Ponzi, is that there is no owner that can pull the plug when they have made enough money, collapsing the scheme and exit scamming all the late joiners.

The smart contract of Fomo3D at its core is a bucket of digital currency (a single Etherum address) that has no limit to how much it can contain. The idea is to have a countdown timer of 24 hours which is reset every time someone adds more (Ethereum in this case) digital currency to this address. If no one adds more Etherum to the address over the 24 hour period and you are the last one to add funds to the address when the timer hits zero, you get everything inside the address which currently sits above 10 million dollars worth! (21737 Ethereum). There is no question in what the smart contract Fomo3D is or does, as the source code for the contract is publicly visible to everyone, taking the guesswork out of when or if the creator can or will shut down the experiment. The real question is who is going to exit scam publicly first via the intended method (being last to send funds to the pot).

Ponzi

This is profoundly interesting and opens up questions of how far the experiment will go. A lot of discussion throughout the community following Fomo3D is based around this smart contract being the black hole of crypto. Theoretically, this will never be cashed out until all of the Ethereum in existence is inside the contract, as people run out of funds new people will contribute trying to claim the prize and making the pot larger and larger. Once the contract address has a majority amount of Ethereum inside the contract and it is all cashed out to a single person, (the last one to contribute funds before the timer runs out) does the currency still have value if one person owns all of it?

There are dividends based on being an earlier submitter of funds to the contract address which is paid out to the address the funds were sent from. This incentivizes speculators to contribute who are not trying to be the last contributor of Etherum to the contract address and win the whole pot.

You can see a live link to the website below which is hosting the timer countdown in real time.

http://exitscam.me/play

Utility Tokens

Oyster Protocol

I found out about the Oyster protocol in November 2017. This was another project in the crypto sphere that had me hooked very quickly. The project is based on IOTA, an alternative idea that had looked at all of Bitcoin’s shortcomings and said: “We can do it better”. IOTA works off of the premise that instead of having miners that are dedicated to confirming transactions in Bitcoin, it used instead, a method where if you want to send a transaction you had to confirm two transactions before you. This can be looked at as a sort of micro-mining. The technology that supports this system is called The Tangle which is a different go on the blockchain.

Screenshot_7

Above is a visualization of what the Tangle looks like, every transaction is linked to another.

IOTA is focusing on machine to machine communication as to send or make a transaction you do not have to pay a fee as in its opponent blockchain. This enables a world of connected devices that can communicate for essentially no cost other than to confirm two transactions before itself. This is where the wave of speculation that your fridge and microwave one day will be connected to the internet and order more bread or milk from the store before you run out. Smart automated cars that pay for fuel and drive people to destinations with a driverless taxi, these are just a couple random concepts that explore what the technology is capable of.

Aside from the groundwork of IOTA being briefly explained on a high level above, is the Oyster protocol which runs on top of the IOTA tangle. Oyster aims to solve the problem of intrusive and malware ridden ads that are ruining the user’s experience when surfing the internet. How it does this is simple yet complex in its inner workings. A website has to make an income some way to afford its existence online, and the traditional method to do this is to blast ads at the viewer through 3rd party advertising protocols. This creates massive overheads of extra bandwidth and CPU usage to display these ads on your screen. (Heres where it gets a little complex so bear with me) The Oyster solution is to have website viewers “rent out” a small portion of their devices CPU in order to find “buried” pearl which is the Oysters utility token. The token is used essentially to accommodate data storage. You buy the token PRL which allows you to upload any kind of data (images, files, videos etc.) from your computer to a decentralized IOTA Tangle as explained above. The data is split up, encrypted and placed on Broker Nodes that “mine” PRL. When you pay in PRL to have your data stored, this PRL token is split into two amounts. Half is buried in one encryption block for the Broker nodes to find and the other half is buried in a separate location for the website visitors to find. This is done via a line of code inside the website that allows a small portion of the web site viewers CPU to be utilized to “mine” this buried treasure (PRL) and the reward is sent to the website owner. The website is ad-free and the owner of the website is being paid in PRL to keep it that way.

This can be seen as a “two birds one stone” situation. People want decentralized data storage and an ad-free experience surfing the internet.

“But!” You might say “I don’t want to mine these tokens in order to see an ad-free website that’s very invasive!” Yes, that would be a valid argument if it were as expensive as what your thinking, but it isn’t. “Mining” these PRL is far less CPU intensive as running the ads that you’re claiming to prefer. Oyster aims to utilize around 5 percent or lower of the website viewers devices to make this all work. Here is a website showing this in action https://codepen.io/jet/full/QBwveW/ you can actually open up your task manager and see the processing happening on your computer. This has incredible benefits for the website owner to provide clean, ad-free content to the website user without compromising security and the incredible annoyance of picking the content out from the ads while viewing the website. The PRL token is initially going to be pegged to 64gb’s of storage space which at the moment is 10 cents, this storage is decentralized and supports unlimited downloads. Imagine Dropbox without “big brother” looking over your shoulder at your private information and at a (currently) far cheaper price tag.

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This chart is slightly out of date as the price is around 10c/64Gb per year.

You can see the comparisons in the cost of storage from the big companies like Google and Dropbox etc. As the storage peg is set at 64gb the value of that storage is also pegged. This is why it is called a “Utility token” as opposed to Bitcoin, which is primarily a store of value token.

The whole project has gone from idea to beta product in 9 months! http://www.oysterstorage.com is a live beta test of the main net, and you can upload for free until the product is fine-tuned to be worthy of purchase. http://www.oysterprotocol.com is the home page of the teams work and can provide a lot more information and links to videos and readings.

There is another aspect to this protocol wherein another token called Shell (SHL) is based around hosting applications that are written in Javascript for example. These are also decentralized concepts that will come to light further along the development path that the Oyster team has planned.

Perspective

The Hook

Every once in a while a technology or device is introduced into the world that changes everything. Having an eye for this before others wake up to the same resolution is what makes investors tick.

When I first heard of cryptocurrency It was not actually Bitcoin itself that I heard of first, It was DogeCoin. The Facebook post I saw from a computer enthusiast I was friends with read, “Dogecoin up 300 percent in 2 days!”. This got my attention and I dug a little deeper to find out that the cryptocurrency was based on a meme of a cute odd looking dog which was a Shiba Inu. The community based around this coin was like nothing I had ever discovered on the internet before. People were incredibly friendly and tipped each other micro amounts of this internet token. Even going as far as to sponsor a NASCAR driver in the united states as well as a Jamaican bobsled team. The excitement and addiction of contributing to this community was incredible, but it wasn’t the token that brought us together, it was the technology.

The ability to send microtransactions to other people around the globe was not realistic before Bitcoin changed everything. A transaction in a traditional banking environment comes with fees, restrictions and the enforcement of revealing who you are, what you are doing and with whom. This problem has been solved through blockchain technology.

Hyper-Inflation and corruption have lead to civil war in places like Venezuela where a wheelbarrow full of trillion dollar bills buys you a loaf of bread. This happens so slowly over time that people do not revolt and accept the fact that the governments they vote into power are directly stealing from your back wallet in the form of printing more cash. This dilutes the money supply to the point of $20 could buy you a trolly worth of groceries in the early nineties as compared to a few items today.

Satoshi Nakamoto created Bitcoin in 2009 it is almost 2019 and the amount of technology that has sprouted from this revolution is mind-boggling. There are billions of people around the world that haven’t the resources or access to banks that are now able to transact and trade anywhere in the world with a simple smartphone. This opens up the opportunity to become apart of something bigger for people everywhere that were once cut off from the luxuries the western world does not think twice about.

Discovering this technology has changed my life and It has changed the world, people just don’t know it yet.