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The Pros and Cons of Decentralisation

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Benjamin Bateman Hacker Noon profile picture

@benjaminbatemanBenjamin Bateman

Over-opinionated hyphen-abuser, lover of words, and magical-internet-money-community-management-busy-body.

When Satoshi unleashed Bitcoin unto the world some 11 years ago, he awoke the anarchic beast of decentralisation inside of utopian daydreamers everywhere. The industry fetish for eliminating centralised authority figures may have toned down somewhat since the early cypherpunk days of the Bitcointalk forums, yet, decentralisation as a buzzword seems to bumble around more freely than Bill Cosby nowadays.

I mean, when the third largest cryptocurrency by marketcap, BNB, boasting only 21 validators, uses the D word, you have to imagine Satoshi rolling in his grave, right?

There is no doubting though, that BNB is faster and cheaper to use than Ethereum (with it’s 90k+ validators). So is this centralisation on Binance smart chain justified? Do the means give weight to the ends? There are advocates for either side of the debate, however, I’m not here to swing my personal opinion around on which is better.

I work closely with the Free TON community, a project described by more than a few people as ‘painfully decentralised’. While everything is a sliding scale (at ~500 validators we trail Eth in this department), I’m here to offer my insights into which parts of decentralisation have brought joy to our processes, and which have made me want to tear my luscious hippy hair out.

Is Decentralisation a New Idea?

In short, no. Co-operatives and credit unions have been around since the early 1800’s, and there are numerous other examples you can pluck from the air. The basic model of distributing authority and responsibility most likely predates our earliest civilisations.

So why did it take one anonymous programmer creating a trust-less form of internet money for the notion to popularise again?

One view, is that decentralisation is an antidote to the dreaded modern plague of “Oh Dear-ism”.

"Oh Dear-ism - the natural inclination to say 

'oh dear'

 when faced with news or events which otherwise might seem shocking and/or outrageous. Usually caused by an overload of conflicting information, and more often than not, intentionally propagated by agenda makers." 
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Put another way, the powers that be are often controlling both sides of the debate. And when we don’t know who or what to trust, we seek alternative methods of verifying things for ourselves (for more on ‘oh dear-ism’, check out this genius video from Adam Curtis and Charlie Brooker, with part two here).

In some extremes, this leads mindsets seen in such cult phenomena as flat earthers.

On a more modest scale, however, it seems it is leading more of us down the path of decentralisation.

What can you Decentralise?

Given the simplicity of the concept, pretty much anything. If there is someone or something making decisions, then these decision makers can be enumerated, and thus the system decentralised.

Verifying transactions, such as payments, is one obvious candidate for this. But expanding the definition of a transaction, you could include elections, supply-chain tracking, oracle data services, even web servers and data storage solutions.

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But, just because you can do something, it doesn’t mean you should!

Decentralised Governance

Free TON had this whacky idea when they launched their network. Rather than sell any coins (TON Crystals), or give them away for free, they set-up a system of meritocracy.

If you’ve read my interview with the Godfather of EMV, Phillipe Eduardo Andreae, you’ll know that meritocracy could be considered a form of representative government. As opposed to democratically elected trusted representatives though, as in a standard modern government, these representatives gain authority of voice through their actions and the value they bring to the community. Those with the knowledge and enthusiasm then become responsible for subgovernance groups in their specialist fields.

And leading nicely to the meat of our article here, some of these groups have achieved amazing things. Others have struggled to adapt standard practises they are familiar with into an efficient way of decentralised working.

The Pros

Technical developments

The contests we’ve seen for development of technical solutions have achieved impressive results. These contests bring multiple answers to the questions they pose, and judging processes (for the most part!) are smooth and efficient affairs. Criteria are quantitively assessed, leading to consistent and clear decentralised decisions.

Partnerships

Barring a couple of minor exceptions, a decentralised partnership model drives established use-case models and talented teams into the Free TON ecosystem. Hackernoon, Cointelegraph, WorldChess.com, and many other top an already impressive bill.

Rewards

At a glance, some of the contest rewards on Free TON might seem large. But, if you want to attract the best apes, you offer top bananas. Those who do the work are handsomely rewarded, and thus are incentivised to contribute more in the long term. Team work makes the dream work, right?

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The Cons

Communication

If I had a TON for every time I’ve found out breaking news as it happens, well, it’d be a lot of TON. With so many thinktanks, with various languages and technical jargon, no one man can keep up with it all.

Qualitative Metrics

Technical contests, with their technical requirements and cold-hard criteria, great. But what about contests for us creative types? How do you measure flair, style, quality of content? Sure, there are some yard-sticks which can be put into place, but there will inevitably be disagreements when the results roll in.

Efficiency

The most efficient tool have the fewest moving parts and people. Increased decentralisation is almost diametrically opposed to increased efficiency. Let us not forget the tale of the tortoise and the hare though…

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But, Sir, wen new world order?

While crypto might seem an anarchist movement on the surface, dig a little deeper and you’ll realise the majority of rational thinkers understand this is a marathon, not a sprint. To rehash the Matrix cliché we’ve heard a thousand times, most people, normal people, aren’t ready to have the wool pulled from their eyes. They’ll actively stand up to fight for and protect the systems while oppress their freedoms.

So while we can’t simply unplug everyone all in one go, we can slowly but surely gives them glimpses into the world beyond the manipulation. By making decentralisation work for people, and not the other way around, we might just be on to something with this movement.

Like Infotainment?

If this is the first one of my articles you’ve come across, you might find my style a bit bizarre, but hopefully you enjoyed it.

And if you’re familiar with my previous ramblings, you’re either a fan, or a glutton for punishment.

Either which way, I’d love for you to check out my new project. It’s a podcast, and I call it NeverMind the Sh*tcoins. Available on all good podcasting platforms, episode one records and airs the w/c 12/7/21 (all being well!).

I’m pretty freaking excited about it, and to try and get you guys to share in my excitement I’m giving away $100 worth of Ethereum to someone who follows our Twitter account (winner will be chosen at random when we reach 100 followers).

What have you got to lose? Free prize draw, and a few chuckles.

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And if you think you know your crypto, and are game for a laugh, then contact me about becoming a guest on the show?

by Benjamin Bateman @benjaminbateman. Over-opinionated hyphen-abuser, lover of words, and magical-internet-money-community-management-busy-body. Read my stories

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Source: https://hackernoon.com/the-pros-and-cons-of-decentralisation-6lh356f?source=rss

Blockchain

Outplay raises USD 7.3 million to make outbound sales scalable

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4X growth in revenue since the seed fundraise with customers spread across 50+ countries

  • Series A funds raised from Sequoia Capital India

San Francisco, 21st July 2021: Multi-channel sales engagement platform, Outplay today announced its $7.3M series A fundraise from Sequoia Capital India. Outplay will use the funds raised to invest in technology and hiring exceptional talent across the globe.

Businesses today rely on a combination of inbound and outbound sales models to drive revenues. While the inbound sales process has rapidly evolved over the last 10 years, outbound sales hasn’t. Outbound sales teams typically use high-volume tactics to drive revenue. But this approach is not scalable and the revenue eventually becomes a function of the size of the outbound sales team. This is because outbound sales teams don’t have a data-driven approach for targeting prospects that are most likely to convert and end up spending time emailing or cold-calling hundreds of prospects hoping to convert a few.

Launched in 2019, Outplay is on a mission to change this by bringing predictability to outbound sales and help every salesperson talk to the right prospect at the right time through the right channel. The platform helps outbound sales teams plan, execute, track, measure and optimize interactions between companies and their prospects across multiple channels like email, phone, SMS, social media as well as live chat.

Laxman Papineni, CEO of Outplay commented, “Outbound sales teams are truly the dark horse of the sales organization – the targets are high, but the methods aren’t scientific. Outplay is committed to making outbound outreach data-driven, so that sales teams are talking only to the warmest prospects at any given point across multiple channels, optimizing time and resources. The continued partnership with Sequoia Capital India is a testament to the fact that the sales engagement space, which is poised to be a $5.59B market by 2023, is a huge opportunity for Outplay.”

With Outplay, sales managers can create data-backed sales playbooks to coach their team members and help them achieve their sales targets. The platform’s combination of automation and personalization helps teams start genuine conversations at scale, enabling them to stay on task by using multiple channels through a single interface to drive more meetings. Sales reps are thus able to build a multi-channel outreach plan for their prospects across email, phone, SMS, LinkedIn, Twitter and chat.

For example, Outplay helps sales teams engage with warm prospects by notifying them when their prospect visits their business website. Enabled by Outplay’s industry-first outbound live-chat feature, Magic Outbound Chat, the rep can initiate live chat and have a contextual conversation with the prospect. Customers have been able to qualify prospects faster and grow their pipeline by 300% using the tool alongside inbound chat.

“We continue to be very excited by Outplay’s mission of making every sales rep perform like the best rep on the team. Outbound sales needs are evolving rapidly and reps now need personalized, automated and contextual tools to drive sales which Outplay is successfully enabling. Sales reps spend an average of four hours per day on Outplay,  demonstrating the effectiveness of the product which has category-leading customer reviews. Additionally, rapid digitization due to COVID has been a significant accelerant for the business and we believe these tailwinds will continue as outbound sales becomes more digital.” Harshjit Sethi, Principal, Sequoia India

Outplay also offers support to ensure software adoption across customer teams is done within days, not weeks or months. Since the seed fundraise – USD 2 Mn from Sequoia Capital India’s Surge early this year, the company has grown 4X in revenue, 3X in team size and has customers from more than 50 countries. Outplay was a part of the Surge 04 cohort.

About Outplay

Outplay is a multi-channel sales engagement platform that ensures outbound sales teams deliver the most powerful message at the perfect time in the buyer journey through the right channel. With features like dynamic sequencing, magic outbound chat and detailed analytics, Outplay gives sales development representatives (SDRs) and business development representatives (BDRs) the right signals so they only work on the warmest prospects across multiple channels like email, phone, SMS, LinkedIn, Twitter and Chat.

Source: Platodata Intelligence

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Blockchain

BNY Mellon Joins State Street Into Crypto Trading, Backs Pure Digital Trading Platform

The oldest bank of America, BNY Mellon has recently joined State Street and other banks in their foray into backing crypto trading platform Pure Digital.

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The oldest bank of America, BNY Mellon, has recently joined State Street and other banks in their foray into backing crypto trading platform Pure Digital. In accordance with the report shared by the Financial Times, the recent move of backing Pure Digital shows the surging interest of custody banks in cryptocurrencies from their clients.

BNY Mellon Backs Pure Digital Crypto Trading Platform

BNY Mellon made an announcement today that revealed it is going to join State Street Corporation and other banks in backing the Pure Digital crypto trading platform.  

Lauren Kiley, the CEO of Pure Digital, gave details about the recent move and said:

“We have spoken to all the top-tier banks, but we think custody banks were some of the first to see demand, so they are now more advanced.”

Apart from BNY Mellon and State Street, there are other four banks on the list which have extended support for the crypto trading platform but have refused to disclose their identity, and hence their names are not yet known.

In addition to this, the Global Head of Foreign Exchange at BNY Mellon, Jason Vitale, laid an emphasis on the future of digital assets and said:

“Digital assets are only going to become more embedded in global markets in the years ahead, and this collaboration accords with BNY Mellon’s wider strategy to develop a digital asset capability for clients across the entire trade life cycle.”

Crypto Market Sentiment Index Hits One-Year Low

The Fear and Greed Index, a market sentiment indicator popular with the traders in the market, has shown a value of 10, which marks the lowest value in the year 2021.

Even though Bitcoin managed to gain some dollars after witnessing a heavy sell-off, which was possibly caused by the B-Word conference that will involve a discussion between Jack Dorsey, Elon Musk, and Cathie Wood, the index did not respond as expected. 

Well, there is a positive side of this news too, as the last time when the Fear and Greed Index was close to 10, it was when the previous bull run started.

READ  BTC Network Activity Reaching All-Time High as Halving Approaches

#BNY Mellon #Crypto Market Sentiment Index #Crypto Trading #Pure Digital #State Street

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Source: https://www.cryptoknowmics.com/news/bny-mellon-joins-state-street-into-crypto-trading-backs-pure-digital-trading-platform

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Blockchain

As Banks Begin to Embrace Blockchain, Cross-Chain Interoperability Will be Vital to Mass Adoption

The post As Banks Begin to Embrace Blockchain, Cross-Chain Interoperability Will be Vital to Mass Adoption appeared first on Coinpedia – Fintech & Cryptocurreny News Media| Crypto Guide

Back in September 2017, JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon ridiculed Bitcoin, calling it a fraud “worse than tulip bulbs.” For the uninitiated, he was referring to the 17th century Dutch tulip market bubble, one of the craziest bubbles in recorded history. Fast forward a few years, JPMorgan and other banking giants have been dipping their …

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Back in September 2017, JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon ridiculed Bitcoin, calling it a fraud “worse than tulip bulbs.” For the uninitiated, he was referring to the 17th century Dutch tulip market bubble, one of the craziest bubbles in recorded history.

Fast forward a few years, JPMorgan and other banking giants have been dipping their toes in the blockchain world. Blockchain enables the untrusted parties to securely transact without middlemen that add to the cost and slow down the transaction speed. Thanks to the self-executing smart contracts, it offers a simple and secure way to establish trust in a transaction. 

Can’t afford to get left behind

It’s not just network efficiency or cost savings that attract banks to blockchain. Blockchains can dramatically improve the security of digital transactions and remove the potential for errors, confusion, and fraudulent transactions

Blockchain and the distributed ledger technology (DLT) are disintermediating the key services that banks provide such as payments, clearance & settlement systems, fundraising, borrowing, lending, customer KYC and fraud prevention. They help simplify the movement of money and sensitive data across the globe.

Large banks have now become far less hesitant to experiment with blockchain. According to a Global Blockchain Survey conducted by Deloitte, more than 95% of the participant banks said they would make at least some investment in blockchain or DLT.

Blockchain today is a lot like the Internet of the 1990s. Organizations reluctant to understand and exploit its capabilities will likely be left behind. It is disrupting almost every industry, including banking – just like the Internet disrupted many in the 1990s.

Embracing blockchain

A growing number of banks have joined blockchain consortiums such as the Hyperledger project and R3 to advance the global blockchain adoption. 

Banks joining different consortiums highlights the facts that there is no standardized implementation of blockchain technology.

There are hundreds of public, private, and consortium blockchains deployed around the world. Even if a bank is part of a consortium, it won’t be able to communicate or exchange information with banks outside the consortium. 

Today, blockchains exist in isolation. They might not gain mainstream acceptance until users are able to seamlessly access value and utility across the entire ecosystem. End users cannot be locked into a single blockchain or standard.

Cross-chain bridges would drive the future adoption

Cross-chain platforms provide interoperability between two relatively independent blockchains. They allow the siloed networks to speak to one another and exchange information. 

Given that banks are building their Dapps on different blockchains, they would rely on cross-chain platforms to talk to one another. Projects like Wanchain have been building cross-chain bridges to connect the different networks to help blockchain reach its full potential.

Earlier this year, Wanchain launched the world’s first BTC-ETH direct bridge. It already offers decentralized bridges connecting Bitcoin, Ethereum, Wanchain, EOS, Binance Smart Chain, Litecoin, and XRP Ledger. 

Wanchain’s cross-chain bridges use unified decentralized collateral pools maintained by its Storeman Group. When a user initiates a cross-chain transaction, the Storeman Group locks the original asset on the origin blockchain before minting a new token, pegged 1:1 to the original asset, on the destination chain.

Any blockchain – whether public, private or consortium chain – can easily integrate with Wanchain to establish connections between different ledgers and perform low-cost inter-ledger asset transfers.

Wrapping it up

The number of blockchain projects is growing rapidly as developers keep coming up with innovative ways to leverage blockchain’s capabilities. There are a wide variety of blockchain ecosystems such as Ethereum, Cardano, Polkadot, Solana, and others – each with their own set of advantages. It’s highly unlikely that there will be a single perfect blockchain platform that all the world’s banks could use to build their Dapps. 

Cross-chain interoperability solutions like Wanchain enable the transmission of the world’s digital assets and data between various isolated blockchain networks in real-time. Truly decentralized and open finance must be connected to make banking services fast, secure, and affordable.

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Source: https://coinpedia.org/news/banks-begin-to-embrace-blockchain/

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Blockchain

MATIC Price Back In Action, $15 Target Set For Polygon By EOY!

matic stable

The post MATIC Price Back In Action, $15 Target Set For Polygon By EOY! appeared first on Coinpedia – Fintech & Cryptocurreny News Media| Crypto Guide

The crypto space was flowing through immense negative sentiments in the past couple of weeks where many assets plunge with a massive margin. The constant rejections of Bitcoin prices at $40K initially and later at $35K had shaken the space. Therefore other popular tokens like Litecoin price, XRP price, MATIC price, etc also suffered more …

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The crypto space was flowing through immense negative sentiments in the past couple of weeks where many assets plunge with a massive margin. The constant rejections of Bitcoin prices at $40K initially and later at $35K had shaken the space. Therefore other popular tokens like Litecoin price, XRP price, MATIC price, etc also suffered more than 60% drop from yearly highs. While the other assets follow an unhurried race, Polygon price takes a gigantic long jump.

The MATIC bulls entered the ring right in time and ease the accumulated selling pressure. The price has experienced an extreme drain off in the last trading day, that it was on the verge to mark the lowest levels that the mid-may crash. However, the asset retraced like a giant accumulating more than 30% gains.

maticprice

The price was following a descending channel where-in each attempt to break the channel resulted in lower lows. The extreme sell-off that initiated since the beginning of July compelled the price to break the lower support levels. However, the fresh surge kept the hopes of a notable surge above $1 alive.

As mentioned in the chart, the Polygon price needs to clear the upcoming barriers at $0.85, $0.97 and finally at $1.06. This would confirm the uptrend into a substantial bullish trend which may also push the price above the ATH. With a notable rebound, the targets remain unchanged or can say escalated. A popular analyst, CyrilXBT predicts a $15 target for MATIC price by EOY.

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Source: https://coinpedia.org/latest-post/matic-price-back-in-action-15-target-for-polygon-price/

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