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Please blockchain, prove me wrong and get your shit together in 2020

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Please blockchain, prove me wrong and get your shit together in 2020

I’ve been covering the nascent — and often weird — world of cryptocurrency and blockchain since January 2015.

During this time, I’ve seen banks dismiss the digital currency but declare their undying love for its underlying blockchain technology, and more recently open up about plans to possibly launch their own version.

I’ve witnessed the wild conspiracy theories, the proofs-of-concept, the crime, the hype — you name it, I’ve seen it, and probably even written about it.

Blockchain is clearly not the only emerging technology that’s gained momentum in recent years. Advancements in artificial intelligence or the internet-of-things, for example, have also received significant attention. But there’s something quite disconcerting about the way in which blockchain hype is portrayed. 

Ugh, the hype

We’ve often heard the line that “blockchain is a solution looking for a problem” and in a way, I have to say I agree.

The notion of decentralization definitely seemed interesting in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis as consumers rightly lost trust in the banking system. But the question I’ve been asking myself for years is: what issues, or issues, is blockchain actually trying to solve? And why?

Some of its purported use cases (voting, payments, digital ID, supply chain management, etc) amount to little more than the willingness to add a distributed and encrypted ledger where one is not actually needed. It sometimes feels like blockchain is being thrown into the mix to complicate, rather than simplify, existing processes just because it’s trendy.

Meaningless

Although perhaps the real problem is that the term “blockchain” has become so widely used that it’s become somewhat redundant.

Writing for the Verge, Adrienne Jeffries, points out that “the idea of a blockchain, the cryptographically enhanced digital ledger that underpins Bitcoin and most cryptocurrencies, is now being used to describe everything from a system for inter-bank transactions to a new supply chain database for Walmart. The term has become so widespread that it’s quickly losing meaning.”

The lack of universal definition about what constitutes blockchain technology is likely a factor that’s also contributed to its lack of adoption. On a purely simplistic note, how can we apply a solution to a problem if we’re not quite sure about what the solution actually is?

Disillusionment

According to Gartner’s Hype Cycle, blockchain is still “sliding into the trough of disillusionment,” meaning the technology is struggling to live up to the expectations created by the hype around it.

Source: Gartner (October 2019)

The Hype Cycle shows that most blockchain technologies are still five to 10 years away from having transformational impact, but if memory doesn’t fail me, this has been the case for as long as I’ve been covering the space.

I can appreciate that it may take a while for some nascent technologies to mature and find their killer app, but surely the fact that it’s taken this long for blockchain to operate freely in the wild, is indicative of its potential future success — or lack thereof.

The wrong approach

Clearly not everyone agrees with me, though.

Antoine Poirson, a partner at Antler, an early-stage venture capital firm and startup builder, still believes blockchain could make it.

“If blockchain technology has been overhyped in the past, mainly because of the hype around cryptocurrencies which rely on this technology, it does have a lot of potential,” he said.

“Allowing trust to be created in a distributed manner remains very powerful, and a lot of broader use cases have started to emerge. Blockchain technology is an enabler for business model innovation, however, until the business cases have been identified, the potential of the technology is not fully utilized,” Poirson added.

Perhaps this is the crux of the issue: maybe blockchain technology hasn’t succeeded to date because the approach hasn’t been focused or specific enough.

Desperate to improve their bottom lines, corporates have tried to leverage the technology in a bid to maximize efficiency and save costs. Banks, for example, have widely explored blockchain‘s ability to improve the post-settlement and clearing process. On the other hand, corporates are still toying with the idea of using blockchain to track the provenance of goods or improve transparency.

Something bigger

Blockchain’s purported promise is such that everyone is willingly taking a multi-faceted approach, not giving much thought to the possibility that its potential may, in fact, be limited. Or maybe blockchain is just the first iteration of something far more powerful, a base we can build on to restore our faith in decentralized systems.

I’m aware that this article will not necessarily go down well with hardcore blockchain enthusiasts, and that’s fine. But, as we enter the new year, I urge you to take a moment and think about what lies ahead. How can we make the blockchain space different in 2020, and more importantly, what’s needed to enact this change?

Earlier this year, I wrote a piece titled “Hype is killing blockchain technology.” At the time, you could argue it was my attempt to re-assess the industry following a three-year hiatus, but fast forward 10 months and not much has changed.

Published December 29, 2019 — 10:00 UTC

Published at Sun, 29 Dec 2019 10:00:20 +0000

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Blockchain

Bitcoin Plummeted $6K as Crypto Market Lost $200 Billion (Market Watch)

Following a few days of upside trading, most of the crypto market has plummeted in value in the past 24 hours. Bitcoin dumped by $6k, while ETH slumped below $4k.

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After reaching a new 3-week high at $59,600, bitcoin slumped by roughly $6,000 in a matter of hours. Most alternative coins followed suit. Red dominates the field, and nearly $200 billion were evaporated from the total market cap.

Bitcoin’s $6K Dump

Although BTC has failed to overcome $60,000, it was actually riding high in the past few days. As reported yesterday, the cryptocurrency spiked to its 3-week highest level at $59,600.

As the community started to anticipate another leg up to and above $60,000, though, the bears took control.

In the following hours, bitcoin started to lose value fast. As a result, the primary crypto fell by more than $6,000 to an intraday low of just below $53,600.

Despite bouncing off and recovering a few thousand dollars, BTC is still about 6% down on a 24-hour scale. Furthermore, bitcoin’s market dominance continues to fade away and is now down below 43%.

BTCUSD. Source: TradingView
BTCUSD. Source: TradingView

Sea of Red Among the Altcoins

The alternative coins were performing more impressively than their leader in the past few weeks. However, most of them have plummeted since yesterday as well.

Ethereum, which has been at the forefront of the altseason, registered yet another all-time high at $4,200 yesterday. However, it dumped by about $400 almost immediately to a low around $3,800. ETH has recovered some ground since then but still stands below $4,000.

Binance Coin (-5.5%), Ripple (-10%), Cardano (-7.5%), Polkadot (-12%), Bitcoin Cash (-12%), Litecoin (-12%), and Chainlink (-12%) are also deep in red.

Dogecoin continues with its slide since Elon Musk’s SNL appearance during the weekend. Another 11% dump has driven the meme coin below $0.5.

Cryptocurrency Market Overview. Source: Quantify Crypto
Cryptocurrency Market Overview. Source: Quantify Crypto

Further losses come from Bitcoin Diamond (-20%), Qtum (-18%), ICON (-17%), Ethereum Classic (-17%), OMG Network (-15%), Fantom (-15%), DigiByte (-15%), Ontology (-15%), Avalanche (-15%), EOS (-15%), and more.

Naturally, the crypto market cap also felt hard and declined by about $200 billion at one point after yesterday’s record above $2.5T. As of writing these lines, though, the metric has increased above $2.4 trillion.

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Disclaimer: Information found on CryptoPotato is those of writers quoted. It does not represent the opinions of CryptoPotato on whether to buy, sell, or hold any investments. You are advised to conduct your own research before making any investment decisions. Use provided information at your own risk. See Disclaimer for more information.

Cryptocurrency charts by TradingView.


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Source: https://cryptopotato.com/bitcoin-plummeted-6k-as-crypto-market-lost-200-billion-market-watch/

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Public Mint Partners with KIRA to Enable Cross-Chain Liquid Staking

[Press Release – San Francisco, California, 10th May, 2021] Public Mint and KIRA have announced a strategic partnership that would see Public Mint’s native tokens integrated in KIRA’s cross-chain liquid staking platform, enabling holders of Public Mint’s USD+ and MINT tokens to benefit from cross-chain DeFi opportunities while continuing to receive yield through Public Mint. […]

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[Press Release – San Francisco, California, 10th May, 2021]

Public Mint and KIRA have announced a strategic partnership that would see Public Mint’s native tokens integrated in KIRA’s cross-chain liquid staking platform, enabling holders of Public Mint’s USD+ and MINT tokens to benefit from cross-chain DeFi opportunities while continuing to receive yield through Public Mint.

KIRA is an interoperable blockchain hub that offers cross-chain liquid staking for a number of tokens. Liquid staking is an innovative DeFi primitive that tokenizes a user’s staked assets to enable seamless use in other environments. KIRA will allow users to deposit their Public Mint native assets, including the USD+ synthetic stablecoin and the MINT governance token, which will be seamlessly staked to continue to receive yield. In return, users will receive an IOU token that represents the funds locked in the platform and can be redeemed at any time for the underlying funds. Using a tokenized representation means that the underlying funds can be used seamlessly as if they were the original token, and can be put to work through other DeFi yield opportunities, effectively multiplying capital efficiency and yield.

Through the integration with KIRA, Public Mint assets can be connected to a number of other blockchains supported by the network thanks to its Interchain Exchange Protocol (IXP). This further enhances Public Mint’s vision of interoperability, adding to the existing native bridge with the Ethereum blockchain.

“We’re excited to be partnering with KIRA to further connect the Public Mint blockchain with the wider crypto ecosystem,” said Paulo Rodrigues, CEO of Public Mint. “KIRA’s liquid staking ability will vastly increase capital efficiency and attract more liquidity to Public Mint’s Earn program. We expect to see even more use cases for USD+ and MINT deriving from this integration in the future.”

“Building a truly inclusive and capable DeFi ecosystem is what KIRA stands for, which is why we designed our cross-chain liquid staking system,” said Milana Valmont, CEO of KIRA. “Partnering with Public Mint furthers that vision to bring KIRA to the widest audience possible, especially given their focus on users who are not too crypto-savvy.”

Public Mint is a complete platform for synthetic fiat that is fully collateralized, regulated and FDIC-insured, running on a fiat-native blockchain. The platform is designed to be fiat-friendly, allowing non-crypto users to earn significant yield on their assets without exposing themselves to the complexity and volatility of cryptocurrencies. The EARN program is Public Mint’s yield aggregation platform, containing strategies that combine yield opportunities from both DeFi and more traditional cryptocurrency lending, commonly referred to as “CeFi.” EARN will be available from Q3 through the Public Mint mobile wallet app, complete with a native fiat-to-crypto rail, as well as with USDC bridged from the Ethereum blockchain.

About Public Mint

Public Mint bridges the worlds of traditional fiat with the innovative world of crypto. It offers a complete platform for synthetic fiat, regulated and fully collateralized with funds held on deposit with FDIC-insured financial institutions.

Public Mint offers a fiat-native blockchain, APIs and web components, open and ready for anyone to build fiat-native applications and accept credit cards, ACH, wire transfers, and more — no bank accounts needed.

About KIRA

KIRA is the first decentralized network that enables market access to any digital asset in the crypto ecosystem. Users can earn block and fee rewards from staking any digital asset on multiple chains at the same time, while maintaining full liquidity and custody over their funds, whether trading on KIRA or using other DeFi apps simultaneously.

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Source: https://cryptopotato.com/public-mint-partners-with-kira-to-enable-cross-chain-liquid-staking/

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Blockchain

Public Mint Partners with KIRA to Enable Cross-Chain Liquid Staking

[Press Release – San Francisco, California, 10th May, 2021] Public Mint and KIRA have announced a strategic partnership that would see Public Mint’s native tokens integrated in KIRA’s cross-chain liquid staking platform, enabling holders of Public Mint’s USD+ and MINT tokens to benefit from cross-chain DeFi opportunities while continuing to receive yield through Public Mint. […]

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Published

on

[Press Release – San Francisco, California, 10th May, 2021]

Public Mint and KIRA have announced a strategic partnership that would see Public Mint’s native tokens integrated in KIRA’s cross-chain liquid staking platform, enabling holders of Public Mint’s USD+ and MINT tokens to benefit from cross-chain DeFi opportunities while continuing to receive yield through Public Mint.

KIRA is an interoperable blockchain hub that offers cross-chain liquid staking for a number of tokens. Liquid staking is an innovative DeFi primitive that tokenizes a user’s staked assets to enable seamless use in other environments. KIRA will allow users to deposit their Public Mint native assets, including the USD+ synthetic stablecoin and the MINT governance token, which will be seamlessly staked to continue to receive yield. In return, users will receive an IOU token that represents the funds locked in the platform and can be redeemed at any time for the underlying funds. Using a tokenized representation means that the underlying funds can be used seamlessly as if they were the original token, and can be put to work through other DeFi yield opportunities, effectively multiplying capital efficiency and yield.

Through the integration with KIRA, Public Mint assets can be connected to a number of other blockchains supported by the network thanks to its Interchain Exchange Protocol (IXP). This further enhances Public Mint’s vision of interoperability, adding to the existing native bridge with the Ethereum blockchain.

“We’re excited to be partnering with KIRA to further connect the Public Mint blockchain with the wider crypto ecosystem,” said Paulo Rodrigues, CEO of Public Mint. “KIRA’s liquid staking ability will vastly increase capital efficiency and attract more liquidity to Public Mint’s Earn program. We expect to see even more use cases for USD+ and MINT deriving from this integration in the future.”

“Building a truly inclusive and capable DeFi ecosystem is what KIRA stands for, which is why we designed our cross-chain liquid staking system,” said Milana Valmont, CEO of KIRA. “Partnering with Public Mint furthers that vision to bring KIRA to the widest audience possible, especially given their focus on users who are not too crypto-savvy.”

Public Mint is a complete platform for synthetic fiat that is fully collateralized, regulated and FDIC-insured, running on a fiat-native blockchain. The platform is designed to be fiat-friendly, allowing non-crypto users to earn significant yield on their assets without exposing themselves to the complexity and volatility of cryptocurrencies. The EARN program is Public Mint’s yield aggregation platform, containing strategies that combine yield opportunities from both DeFi and more traditional cryptocurrency lending, commonly referred to as “CeFi.” EARN will be available from Q3 through the Public Mint mobile wallet app, complete with a native fiat-to-crypto rail, as well as with USDC bridged from the Ethereum blockchain.

About Public Mint

Public Mint bridges the worlds of traditional fiat with the innovative world of crypto. It offers a complete platform for synthetic fiat, regulated and fully collateralized with funds held on deposit with FDIC-insured financial institutions.

Public Mint offers a fiat-native blockchain, APIs and web components, open and ready for anyone to build fiat-native applications and accept credit cards, ACH, wire transfers, and more — no bank accounts needed.

About KIRA

KIRA is the first decentralized network that enables market access to any digital asset in the crypto ecosystem. Users can earn block and fee rewards from staking any digital asset on multiple chains at the same time, while maintaining full liquidity and custody over their funds, whether trading on KIRA or using other DeFi apps simultaneously.

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Source: https://cryptopotato.com/public-mint-partners-with-kira-to-enable-cross-chain-liquid-staking/

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Rari Capital Will Reimburse Hack Victims with $26 Million From Developer Fund

After suffering pool exploit, core developers of Rari Capital will reimburse hack victims with up to $26 million worth of RGT.

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DeFi protocol Rari Capital plans to reimburse its affected users after a hacker managed to exploit its liquidity pool, draining 10 million worth of Ethereum (ETH) – around 60% of users’ funds.

Jai Bhavnani, Rari Capital CEO, said the protocols’ core contributors have agreed to return 2 million of their $RGT —which was initially allocated for developers as an incentive— back to the DAO and reimburse impacted users.

According to a postmortem, the attacker drained the pool by taking a flash loan from the exchange dYdX to deposit ETH and make repeated withdrawals. The protocol will prevent deposits and withdrawals in the same block to avoid these flash loan attacks.

ETH Pool Exploited

The Rari Capital Ethereum Pool transfers ETH into Alpha Finance’s ibETH token. However, developers were not aware of a function in the ibETH token that could artificially inflate its value. The attacker took advantage of that function, manipulating the contract to withdraw more funds than deposited. He stole 2600 ETH of the Ethereum Pool, according to David Lucid, Rari Capital’s lead developer.

Rari Capital is still discussing proposals via community calls. The first security measure is to require all upcoming protocols the company integrates with to review their integrations, stating that protocols “know the code they wrote better than anyone else.”


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As for auditing, the company is waiting for an audit with OpenZeppelin and plans to enlist other auditing firms rather than Quantstamp.

DeFi Hacks on the Rise

Rari Capital is the latest DeFi hack. The Rari Governance Token (RGT) tumbled 50% following the news, going from $18 to $8. However, the coin managed to recover to $12 at the time of writing.

There have been numerous attacks in the DeFi space recently. As reported by CryptoPotato, at least $50 million disappeared from Uranium finance in an apparent hack. However, most users in the crypto community speculate of a possible rug pull.

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Source: https://cryptopotato.com/rari-capital-will-reimburse-hack-victims-with-26-million-from-developer-fund/

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