An Ethereum-based noncustodial margin trading platform powered by Compound and Uniswap, to go long/short ETH and ERC20 tokens.
Opyn is yet another classic example of the power of protocol modularity in defi. All a user needs to do to take a short position on a token for example is to provide DAI as collateral. Opyn in the background borrows the token on Compound and sells it for DAI on Uniswap. Liquidations are managed by the Compound protocol below certain collateralization ratios, while Opyn extracts a small fee (on top of the Uniswap fee that is passed through to users). Opyn went live on mainnet last week.
There are several other margin trading products built on Ethereum, however Opyn appears to be the first to be powered by an external lending protocol (i.e. Compound). h/t @tstyle11
A decentralized margin lending and trading platform.
Built on the bZx protocol, Fulcrum is an application for tokenized margin lending and trading. It currently supports lending, leveraging and shorting of ETH, wBTC, ZRX, KNC, BAT, REP, DAI and USDC, and according to the team already has $750,000 in lending liquidity.
The interesting thing here is that both margin loans and positions are tokenized into newly minted ERC-20s: itokens for loans and ptokens for positions (similarly to Compound cTokens). This opens up a vast degree of flexibility for users to do a host of different things. The tokens can be sold on both centralized and decentralized exchanges, bundled into ETFs, used as collateral for loans (just the itokens), or for exiting a loan / position.
Fulcrum is the latest example of a growing number of consumer-facing applications built on several layers of decentralized infrastructure. The complexities of the architecture are obscured from the end-user, who can leverage features uniquely enabled by decentralization through a clean and intuitive interface.
Analytics interface for comparing interest rates across open finance.
This was released a couple weeks back under a new and improved interface, but still worth a mention considering the rising number of lending protocols in the space. The bloqboard team originally built this as an internal tool, before deciding to release this to the wider public. Currently, the product supports Compound, Maker and Dharma with view to add more protocols in the future.
Tools like Loanscan are important to give users maximum transparency and allow for data-driven decision making. We definitely need more products like this.
A Chainlink oracle to pull data from Google’s cloud onto public smart contract blockchains
Google announced an integration with Chainlink, an oracle provider, to develop middleware in order to connect Ethereum to its enterprise cloud data warehouse. Through a Chainlink oracle, a smart contract can fetch data from an on-chain query to a data warehouse like Google’s BigQuery.
One of the biggest challenges in crypto remains how to get external data on-chain (oracle problem). Trade-offs between trustlessness and efficiency need to be made, with this particular approach compromising on the former to optimize the later.
Google envisions a future where applications will be built on a hybrid cloud-blockchain infrastructure, with smart contracts delegating to cloud resources for some of the heavy lifting.
It’s really interesting to see the different approaches large tech incumbents are taking with regard to crypto. While some are taking the route of building their own permissioned systems, others, like Google, are building infrastructure to connect to open networks.
Pocket Network is a trustless API layer for every blockchain.
The problem of serving blockchain data via API is a major centralizing force in many different dapps, so services like this one can help decentralize that a bit by aggregating the demands from many different dapps and using network incentives for providing real data.
The "Minimum Viable Pocket (MVP)"(see what they did there) launched about 6 weeks ago.
An open source mixer for mobile-friendly private transfers on Ethereum.
Only last week we featured Vitalik's specs for an ETH mixer. It looks like the Argent Labs team had been working on something similar behind the scenes, picking up on some early work by barryWhiteHat:
"users can deposit notes of 1 ETH into a mixer smart contract and withdraw them later to a different account by only providing a Zero-Knowledge proof (zkSNARK) that they previously deposited a note into the mixer, without revealing from which account that note was sent."
Layer 2 protocol for privacy preserving smart contracts on Ethereum.
Enigma released its Discovery testnet, which allows developers to write privacy-preserving smart contracts that don't reveal the identity of participants and can encrypted data as inputs.
Privacy-preserving smart contracts address major usability problems like commit-reveals and front-running attacks, which many projects in the space are suffering from, as well as enabling entirely new applications. So it's super exciting to see more of this tech becoming available and usable.
The team at Computable Labs have dropped a new paper last week on "Fair value and decentralized governance of data", outlining their proposal for a protocol to power a decentralized data marketplace for intelligent agents. The paper focuses on the economic and governance framework behind the protocol. Testnet is expected in the coming week and we look forward to learning more about this approach.
Institutional-grade platform to securely transfer digital assets.
Fireblocks came out of stealth mode last week, unveiling its solution for securely moving digital assets between wallets and exchanges, and a whopping $16M Series A round. Fireblocks implements a non-custodial hot wallet with a MPC-based distributed key scheme in isolated chip-sets across both Fireblocks’ cloud servers and users owned secure mobile enclaves.
The infrastructure stack for institutional investors continues to grow and improve.
Open-source proposal to bootstrap a resilient alternative to centralized networks for essential communication.
Global Mesh Labs has been set up as a subsidiary of GoTenna to incubate the Lot49 open-source protocol that one of their engineers (Richard Myers) has proposed. The Lot49 protocol builds on the Bitcoin Lightning Network to incentivize data delivery in a global decentralized mesh communication network, using micro-payments to incentivize people to provide coverage and capacity.
This is God's work to free us all from centralized carriers and ISPs controlling the delivery of *80 billion messages a day*. 🙏 One paper we look forward to reading up.
A decentralized wireless telecommunications network with a crypto-powered economic layer.
Speaking of disrupting legacy carriers, Helium came out this week with a big Series C raise ($15M from Multicoin, USV, Khosla, etc) and more details on what they've been working on. Helium has been around for a while (founded in 2013, raised $40M+ befire), but now seems to have found a new business model for its technology (essentially commodity hardware based on open-source software) with a blockchain that permissionlessly rewards hotspot operators with crypto on a on a per-byte basis.
The vision is to finally enable global scale IoT economy (starting with scooter co Lime) with a cost structure and incentive system that the AT&Ts and Vodafones of the world can't even start competing with.