Insightful look into the state of things in Ethereum 2.0, as Matt and Dan from Kyokan present their findings from interviewing 5 implementation teams, then outline some of the key problems and proposed solutions.
Superb post by Hector Rosekrans, drawing parallels between the control of commerce in the high seas and the centralizing forces in the digital commons, and how Bitcoin is giving humanity a weapon to take on that power for itself.
The BitTorrent sale on Binance launchpad earlier this year gave birth to the latest craze: IEOs, initial exchange offerings. With trading volumes and fees down the sink, exchanges seem to have found another revenue line to milk. In this post TE old friend Derek outlines his views on why they are interesting, but probably not a big deal.
Excellent observation on the current state of defi, by Alex Evans of Placeholder: "protocols that concentrate liquidity into a smaller number of markets and assets [eg Maker, Uniswap] have thus far had a much smoother path to adoption" compared to those that require a discrete counterparty for each trade (e.g. 0x, Dharma).
Stefano had the pleasure of judging the NuCypher hackathon hosted by CoinList last week, and rarely been so excited about a new technology.
Big disclosure up front: Stefano has been an investor in NuCypher since 2016 through one of his funds and is also a direct personal investor. Yannick is also a direct investor.
Proxy re-encryption feels like magic. The ability to encrypt once and decrypt on an individual basis just by issuing a new decryption key and not having to re-encrypt everything enables so many novel new use cases.
One of my favorites was "thisfeedisalwaysforsale", which implements a harberger tax on top of a stream of data. Anyone can buy access to the stream of data and pay a tax on it depending on the price it sets, and anyone can buy it and take it away from them.
With NuCypher we finally have the ability to run such a scheme in a fully decentralized way where the contract would be issuing and revoking decryption keys to the buyers, with absolutely no risk of double-dipping by previous buyers.
DAIhard is a new crypto-to-fiat, trustless Localbitcoin clone built on Ethereum.
It works with any fiat currency, and in the style of new players like Ramp Network, is completely decentralized (vs Localbitcoin).
While Ramp tries to solve the runaway-with-the-money problem with Open Banking apis, DAIhard uses collateral.
Both the buyer and seller commit the same amount of collateral to the trade - but the twist is that there is no oracle nor third party to settle the trade. It's all based on incentives.
The transaction flow works like this: - Seller locks DAI amount in a contract - Buyer locks 1/3rd of the amount, in DAI, in the same contract as collateral - Buyer sends fiat to the seller with whatever payment method they agreed on (usually cash or bank transfers so as to not be reversible) - Now, the Seller has two options: release the funds to the Buyer, or Burn both her funds and the Seller's collateral. If they didn't receive the money, they can decide to burn both their own money as well as the deposit of the seller. If they did receive the fiat, then they'd just release all the funds to the Seller.
This strikes me as a terrible incentivization scheme for the following reasons: - if the Seller doesn't receive the fiat, then essentially she has lost his money. The whole system needs to be designed to minimize or eliminate the possibility of this happening, and it isn't. - if the Seller receives the fiat, she has absolutely no incentive, other than being a decent human being, to not burn her capital and the stake from the Buyer.
This could have been so much better with just a few tweaks:
- Seller locks in 2x DAI - Buyer locks in 2x DAI (1/3 DAI is way too low of an incentive). - Seller can then decide if they want to release capital to Buyer and get back the 1x DAI deposit
In this scenario, I think that the burning mechanism would really rarely have to be used, as the stakes are much higher for the Seller as they would also be burning their additional collateral.
Still not ideal in a scenario where it could be proven that the fiat was never transferred, but hey - it's an early approach.
This is clearly the path for future decentralized fiat-to-crypto exchanges.
We'd be really interested in seeing more approaches here.
FUN FACT: the unkillable exchange had a major bug that would let anyone get the collaterals. -.-
We may have missed this one from back in December, but featuring now as someone resurfaced it this week in conjunction to their testnet launch. Algorand got its 9-digit ecosystem fund, called Algo Capital.
The interesting bit: Algorand is one of the LPs in Algo Capital, and Algo Capital was the lead investor in Algorand's latest funding round. 🤯
Blockdeamon, the developer of managed node deployment middleware tools for multiple blockchains, has raised a round of undisclosed size led by Lerer Hippeau, with participation from existing lead investors Comcast Ventures and Boldstart and new investors Coinfund, Republic Venture and CRCM Fund.
Flexa has raised $14M from Pantera, Nima, 1kx and Access Ventures through a private token sale for Flexacoins.
The Flexa team is building the infrastructure and application to drive retail payment adoption of cryptocurrencies, and the Flexacoin is an ERC20 token that will be used to stake value for merchant payment processing.