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Ticketing platforms use blockchain to engage with customers post-pandemic

Will blockchain technology help revitalize the concert and event industry through customer engagement?

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The year 2020 was certainly lonely for many people around the world, as the COVID-19 pandemic resulted in the cancellation of almost all social events and gatherings. As a result, online events have become the new normal for almost every industry. While some may view this as an innovative development, many industries have struggled to exist due to a lack of ticket sales for events. 

For instance, the billion-dollar concert and event promotion industry has seen a decline in revenue at an annualized rate of 11.5%, reaching $17.1 billion in 2021. Data further shows that this decline is a direct result of the coronavirus. Despite COVID-19 vaccination rollouts, a number of major live events are still being canceled.

Blockchain for the ticketing industry

Given the current circumstances, ticketing platforms are seeking new ways to ensure revenue growth and customer satisfaction, while being able to adapt to today’s digital economy. Blockchain technology, in particular, is being leveraged by major ticketing platforms as a solution to deliver digital tickets, special offers, updates and more to event-goers.

For example, Live Nation Entertainment — one of the world’s leading live entertainment companies consisting of Ticketmaster, Live Nation Concerts and Live Nation Sponsorship — will use a blockchain network to engage, communicate and reward ticket holders moving forward.

Specifically, Live Nation SAS (France) will leverage TixTo.Me, a digital entertainment wallet created by the ticketing company FanDragon Technologies and Aventus Network, a layer-two blockchain protocol.

Alan Rakov, CEO of FanDragon, told Cointelegraph that Live Nation France wanted to find a way to retain its ticket holders, noting that the single biggest issue facing the ticketing industry in 2020 was refunding ticket holders for concerts that were canceled due to the coronavirus:

“We use blockchain to make sure we know who a ticket holder is, and then to deliver engaging messages to help them retain their ticket. We can even send ticket holders new tickets via the blockchain for when an event is rescheduled.”

Rakov explained that TixTo.Me ensures all tickets and vouchers are secured on a single platform, regardless of where they were purchased. “Blockchain is leveraged as a verification device between ticketing and fans. Fans simply enter a barcode and then we verify that information to issue a ticket on the blockchain,” said Rakov.

The Aventus Network then processes each transaction. Live Nation France is expected to deliver hundreds of thousands of tickets per year via the TixTo.Me digital wallet.

Engaging with ticket holders via a blockchain network

While innovative, it’s important to point out that using a blockchain network to issue secure, verifiable tickets is not a new development. For instance, in December 2019, Ticketmaster’s vice president of blockchain products explained how the company has been utilizing blockchain for pilot use cases.

The Union of European Football Associations, or more commonly called UEFA, also announced in February 2020 that 1 million soccer match tickets would be distributed to fans via a blockchain-enabled mobile application.

Although the concept of issuing tickets through a blockchain network has been done before, the COVID-19 pandemic has created the need for customers to retain their tickets. As such, innovations like TixTo.Me are going a step further by allowing organizations and artists to directly send ticket holders special offers, updates and engaging content to ensure retention. Rakov mentioned:

“Live Nation France can engage with their customers through brand offers and advertising, which is a big leap for the industry. We now have a whole content delivery system through a streaming ticket within a mobile app.”

In addition to Live Nation France, the Boston Symphony Orchestra, or BSO, also plans to use blockchain to enhance ticket delivery later this year. The BSO recently formed a partnership with True Tickets, a blockchain-based ticketing platform powered by Hyperledger Fabric, to create a ticket-buying experience to meet post-COVID-19 requirements.

Matt Zarracina, co-founder and CEO of True Tickets, told Cointelegraph that the solution will enable the BSO to gain better knowledge into who possesses a ticket from point-of-sale to when tickets are scanned:

“This efficiently allows the BSO to understand who actually attends a performance. This solves some of the common challenges that venues face today, including reclaiming control of tickets from the secondary market while providing better visibility into who a venue’s patrons are.”

While True Tickets’ blockchain platform will ultimately allow BSO patrons to bypass will call and physical ticket transactions, digital ticketing will also let the BSO communicate with ticket holders before, after and during events. Ticket holders will directly be informed of updated policies and procedures regarding pandemic-related protocols. The True Tickets platform will also inform individuals about plans for reopening, which is expected to happen this summer at Tanglewood, the BSO’s home since 1937.

Concerns regarding consumer privacy

Although a number of major ticketing platforms have begun leveraging blockchain, concerns around data privacy remain. This shouldn’t come as a surprise, though, as data privacy laws remain fragmented, while new technologies, such as blockchain networks continue to be targeted by sophisticated hackers.

Alan Vey, co-founder and CEO of Aventus Network, told Cointelegraph that FanDragon ensures that there is a cryptographic link to each digital ticket, along with proof of association with each user in the FanDragon system. However, no personally identifiable information is present in the blockchain’s public domain.

Rakov further remarked that FanDragon is compliant with the General Data Protection Regulation in the European Union and that the platform itself does not sell tickets. “Different companies sell their own tickets; we just deliver these. We don’t have any transactional level data.” Echoing Rakov, Zarracina noted that True Tickets neither captures nor stores personally identifiable information from venue partners or clients.

Moreover, platforms such as TixTo.Me and True Tickets may very well enable a new era of digital ticketing. According to Rakov, Live Nation France is currently using TixTo.Me, and the company plans to incorporate new features to meet Live Nation’s ongoing needs.

Zarracina further shared that True Tickets’ venue partners have gone from seeing the company’s service as “nice to have” to a requirement due to the pandemic:

“While the doors have been shut on the majority of live events, there has been an acceleration in technological and digital transformation behind the scenes. We have a number of new partners that we will announce this year, adding to a roster of venues that are working with True Tickets.”

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Source: https://cointelegraph.com/news/ticketing-platforms-use-blockchain-to-engage-with-customers-post-pandemic

Blockchain

Surveying the Privacy Landscape – How do different Privacy Implementations compare?

In this article, I will discuss my views on the existing privacy technology in use in the cryptocurrency space. Since several projects have a primary focus on privacy, I will explain the various privacy technologies, which will help in understanding the route Decred has taken and I will advocate we take. A second article will … Continued

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In this article, I will discuss my views on the existing privacy technology in use in the cryptocurrency space. Since several projects have a primary focus on privacy, I will explain the various privacy technologies, which will help in understanding the route Decred has taken and I will advocate we take. A second article will follow that goes into more detail on how Decred plans to approach privacy. The projects I will cover here are:

Note that I will only be discussing the on-chain privacy technologies used in each of these cases, not the entire project. At the end of the article, I have assembled a table comparing the various projects and technologies they use.

Motivation

Decred has primarily focused on governance since its launch in February 2016, but after making substantial progress on the governance front, the time has come to begin adding privacy features. While privacy is certainly a separate subdomain from governance within the space, privacy connects very directly to the core tenets of Decred: Security, Adaptability, and Sustainability.

By giving our users added privacy, we enhance their and the project’s financial security. Additional privacy features can be added with the consent of our stakeholders in an incremental fashion, allowing Decred to adapt to a changing technological landscape as necessary. Giving our users privacy also makes the project substantially more resilient against malicious actors, magnifying its sustainability in the longer term.

Context

All existing cryptocurrency privacy technology can be distilled down to “math tricks”. Less reductively, several subdomains of mathematics exist that are dedicated to understanding how to efficiently prove certain statements whilst obfuscating much of the data used to prove that statement. Several techniques from these subdomains have been carefully applied to blockchain technology to create the systems in production today. I will be discussing these techniques, their applications, their constraints, and their failure modes.

Monero

Monero’s privacy makes use of a combination of technologies, ring signatures and confidential transactions, which they refer to as RingCT. The combination of these techniques creates strong privacy guarantees, with some caveats. RingCT is required for all transactions on the Monero network.

Ring Signatures

Ring signatures were the basis of the CryptoNote protocol that spawned Bytecoin and Monero. The main utility of ring signatures is that they prevent passive adversaries from tracing the origin of transactions by creating plausible deniability about the unspent transaction outputs (“UTXOs”) used to fund the transaction, e.g. a typical transaction will show 11 sets of input UTXOs, but only one of those sets contains the real input UTXOs. Ring signatures allow an external observer to verify the signatures are from one of the sets of UTXOs, but not which set. Currently, Monero uses a multilayered linkable spontaneous anonymous group (“MLSAG”) signatures, and they will likely be updating this to a new more compact version, called “CLSAG”, in the near future.

Ring signatures take a very narrow approach towards addressing the tracing of transactions on a blockchain. By obfuscating which inputs are used in a given transaction and the signature for those inputs, the ability to deterministically link transactions is broken. Ring signatures do exactly what they need to do and no more. The mathematics and code involved are of moderate complexity, using straightforward primitives and comprising a few thousand lines of source code. The size of the signatures scales linearly in the number of inputs for MLSAG signatures and logarithmically for CLSAG. Ring signatures, along with the rest of elliptic curve cryptography (“ECC”), depending on the discrete logarithm problem (“DLP”) being hard, i.e. unsolvable at the current time, and if DLP is broken, ring signatures can be undone to reveal the actual sender. A notable drawback of ring signatures is that it is not possible to prune the blockchain or otherwise create a snapshot of the UTXO set because it is not possible to determine which transaction outputs are spent and which are not. This is reflected in recent work to have each full node store only 1/8 of all historical transactions.

Confidential Transactions

Confidential transactions (“CT”) were proposed by Greg Maxwell as a method to obfuscate the amounts used in Bitcoin transactions. This is achieved by using Pedersen commitments, verifying the sum of the commitments to zero, and including range proofs that each output commitment corresponds to a positive amount. The range proofs are low-complexity zero-knowledge proofs (“ZKP”). In the context of RingCT, an additional modification must be made to maintain untraceability for the sender, but this modification, which involves commitments summing to a non-zero scalar, is not relevant to understanding the properties of CT. Monero’s first implementation of CT was based on the original work by Maxwell, but they have recently deployed a significantly more efficient implementation, called Bulletproofs, proposed by Bünz et al. Use of Bulletproofs substantially reduces the size and improves the scaling of the range proofs.

CT is similar to ring signatures in that it is a narrow approach to addressing obfuscation of transaction amounts. When Monero was launched, it implemented the CryptoNote protocol, which did not include transaction amount obfuscation, so transactions had amounts with fixed denominations that could be analyzed by passive observers. CT added the amount obfuscation that Monero was missing, which substantially improved its privacy. Like ring signatures, the security of CT depends on DLP being hard, which is expected because it depends on ECC. Unlike ring signatures, CT cannot be undone by breaking DLP because Pedersen commitments are a perfect hiding and computationally binding scheme. The perfect hiding property means that a set of many points, an amount and a blinding factor, in this case, map to the same commitment, so even if you can break DLP, you cannot determine which pair of points mapped to that commitment. Computationally binding indicates that an attacker who can break DLP can generate amounts and blinding factors that map to a given commitment, but that do not match the input amount and blinding factor. While perfectly hiding commitments are great for privacy, even in the case an attacker can break DLP, they are also necessarily risky because an attacker who can break DLP can create stealth inflation, due to the commitments being only computationally binding. The mathematics in the original CT proposal from Maxwell is of moderate complexity, but the more space-efficient Bulletproofs are of moderate-to-high complexity. The source code to implement Bulletproofs is a few thousand lines long, uses straightforward primitives, and synthesizes those primitives in a novel fashion.

Zcash

Zcash’s privacy uses ZKPs to obfuscate both the sender and the amount for transactions. The specific type of ZKP used is a zero-knowledge succinct non-interactive argument of knowledge, called a zk-SNARK. This system guarantees substantial opacity and requires users to opt-in to use it. There are both transparent and shielded transactions in the Zcash network, where shielded transactions are the ones that are protected by zk-SNARKs. As of Q2 2018, approximately 3.6% of all ZEC was stored in shielded addresses.

zk-SNARKs

The use of zk-SNARKs in a cryptocurrency context was proposed in the Zerocash paper by Ben-Sasson et al in 2014, and that paper was the basis for Zcash. zk-SNARKs allow for the creation of succinct transactions that have their inputs, amounts, and recipients completely obfuscated. The obfuscation of the transaction data is achieved by constructing arithmetic circuits that can be efficiently verified by 3rd parties without seeing the transaction data, and these circuits are the payloads of shielded transactions. Fully shielded transactions’ inputs are effectively indistinguishable from each other, meaning that the anonymity set for a particular transaction is the entire shielded segment of the UTXO set.

zk-SNARKs are an incredibly broad tool which can be brought to bear on a wide variety of problems, e.g. access control, voting systems, and generic record keeping. While zk-SNARKs are a very powerful tool that can be applied in a wide variety of scenarios, they have a substantial cost in terms of complexity. The mathematics that supports zk-SNARKs has high complexity and require the use of less common primitives. In order to create a zk-SNARK in Zcash, one must take the transaction information and “compile” it into an arithmetic circuit, which is both computationally intensive and requires a few tens of thousands of lines of code. Beyond the amount of code being used to create the circuit, this code requires non-trivial amounts of domain knowledge to effectively audit. A more concrete constraint of zk-SNARKs is that they require a trusted setup phase to generate parameters for the network, and if the trusted setup phase information is compromised by a malicious actor, they can silently forge coins while leaving existing shielded transactions unaffected. An attacker that can break DLP has a similar power to forge coins, but they can only view transaction amounts and memos, not the senders and receivers. Due to the opacity of shielded transactions, pruning can only work on the transparent segment of the Zcash chain.

Grin/Beam

Grin and Beam both implement the system proposed in the Mimblewimble (“MW”) paper by Tom Elvis Jedusor in July 2016. The MW approach to privacy is to restructure blockchain transactions such that they can be aggregated into blocks, obfuscating the senders and receivers within every block, where amounts are obfuscated using CT. MW privacy applies to all transactions.

Transaction Aggregation

The MW paper proposes restructuring blockchain transactions such that entire transactions can be directly combined. This ability to aggregate is based on substantially altering the way transactions are signed, then using the fact that signatures can be added together to get a valid signature on the aggregated transaction. Blocks mined using this system consist of a single large aggregated transaction, with its amounts obfuscated. Any adversary attempting to historically analyze such a blockchain would only be able to observe the large aggregated transactions that made up each block, which provide plausible deniability regarding senders and receivers.

Transaction aggregation makes use of a common ECC tool, signature aggregation, in a novel way, so it is a broad tool being applied rather narrowly. The mathematics behind signature aggregation is very straightforward and used extensively with ring signatures and CT. The signature algorithm and code to aggregate transactions is a few thousand lines or less and uses common primitives. Despite the utility derived from transaction aggregation, the modifications to the signature algorithm, the inability to use transaction scripts, and changes to the transaction creation process are substantial, so they are unlikely to be integrated into other existing Bitcoin-based blockchains. Once blocks are mined, the included transactions have been aggregated, but prior to being mined, miners and other nodes on the network can see the individual transactions that have been published before they are aggregated. An adversary that closely monitors the transactions being published on the network could use that information to link transactions that cannot be linked by looking at mined blocks. Since MW uses CT directly, an attacker that breaks DLP could silently forge coins, but not undo previous aggregations or reveal amounts. An additional benefit of using MW is that it is built to prune very easily, substantially reducing the storage footprint of full nodes.

Bitcoin

Bitcoin does not implement any substantive privacy features in Bitcoin Core beyond being able to manually select input UTXOs, but an alternative Bitcoin wallet, Wasabi Wallet, does implement privacy features. Wasabi Wallet makes use of a Chaumian CoinJoin process for privacy. Privacy with Bitcoin requires users to opt-in.

Chaumian CoinJoin

Through the application of blind signatures, Chaumian CoinJoin creates plausible deniability regarding the ownership of mixed coins. The CoinJoin process involves a server merging several transactions into a single transaction, giving some on-chain privacy to the participants, but the server can see where funds originate and where they were sent. By using blind signatures, it is possible to obfuscate which outputs link to which set of inputs, preventing the server from linking inputs to outputs. This mixing process occurs episodically, triggered either by a timer or a participation threshold.

The use of blind signatures for the CoinJoin process is a narrow application of a straightforward cryptographic technique. The mathematics behind blind signatures are both low complexity and well-studied, requiring a few hundred lines of code or less to implement. In order to ensure outputs are indistinguishable, several output denominations are used. Since amount obfuscation is not supported in Bitcoin, passive analysis can be used to link inputs and outputs via partial sums, which leads to the need to handle change carefully. The privacy gained from using the blind signature process depends on being able to connect to the server at least 3 times per mix via different network paths, which uses the integrated Tor support in Wasabi Wallet. While Tor provides a decent amount of network privacy, Tor was not designed to thwart a global passive adversary, e.g. NSA, so the privacy gain is dependent on who your perceived adversaries are. An attacker that breaks DLP can impersonate the server, forge signed output addresses, steal input UTXOs, deanonymize mixes from the point they start their attack, and generally force the server to cease operation, but such an attacker cannot deanonymize prior mixes. Chaumian CoinJoin causes no problems with pruning.

Dash

Dash implemented a privacy feature in their Dash Core Wallet, called PrivateSend, in 2014. PrivateSend is a distributed CoinJoin process that uses multiple rounds of mixing. Privacy with Dash is an opt-in process.

PrivateSend

The CoinJoin process has already been covered in the section about Bitcoin, but a similar process is used in Dash. The PrivateSend CoinJoin process involves masternodes merging several transactions into a single transaction, giving some on-chain privacy to the participants, but the masternode executing a given CoinJoin can see where funds originated and where they were sent. Users can specify 4-16 rounds of this mixing, to increase the size of their anonymity set.

PrivateSend is a less private version of Chaumian CoinJoin, albeit with additional rounds of mixing. Distributed CoinJoin is a very narrow tool, meant to obfuscate the origin of coins on-chain, but not obfuscate the senders and receivers from the masternodes that perform each CoinJoin. The algorithm for CoinJoin is straightforward, low complexity, and can be implemented in a few hundred lines of code. It is difficult to estimate how much anonymity is afforded by the PrivateSend process, as there have been claims made that a few large mix participants for this process could effectively deanonymize the CoinJoins. In the event that an attacker can break DLP, they can impersonate arbitrary masternodes, potentially deanonymizing CoinJoins from that point forward, but this would leave prior completed CoinJoins unaffected.

Conclusion

Since it is easy to get lost in the details, a table comparing the privacy features of these projects is shown below. After covering the privacy features of several other major cryptocurrency projects, you are now in a good position to understand Decred’s unique approach, which will be outlined in the next article.

infographic


After Years of Secret Work, Decred Adds a New Feature: Privacy

Since 2016, Decred has worked to implement systems that make it a superior long term store of value. The ledger is hyper-secure, project-level decisions are made by coin holders via Politeia, and the Treasury supports development by paying people for their work.

With these core foundations set, Decred now turns its focus to privacy features that will enhance its users’ financial security and make Decred more sustainable.

Links: 

Jacob’s 2015 post on the challenges with Bitcoin: https://blog.companyzero.com/2015/11/bitcoins-biggest-challenges/

Placeholder VC on why it invested in Decred: https://www.placeholder.vc/blog/2018/5/12/decred-investment-thesis?rq=decred

Smith and Crown’s Decred report: https://sci.smithandcrown.com/research/decred-report

Voting in Decred: https://storage.googleapis.com/smithandcrown-asset-engine-prod/images/voting-cycle.original.png

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Disclaimer: CryptoCanucks.com is not intended to provide tax, legal or investment advice, and nothing on CryptoCanucks.com should be construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any asset by CryptoCanucks.com or any third party. You alone are solely responsible for determining whether any investment, asset or strategy, or any other product or service, is appropriate or suitable for you based on your investment objectives and personal and financial situation. You should consult an attorney or tax professional regarding your specific legal or tax situation.

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Source: https://cryptocanucks.com/surveying-the-privacy-landscape-how-do-different-privacy-implementations-compare/

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Mining Bitcoin: How to Mine Bitcoin

Introduction to Bitcoin Mining Mid-19th century California gold miners were called “forty-niners” after the year 1849, but this rush actually spanned from 1848-1853; it took five years for a quarter-million people to flood the state in search of “free wealth”. Satoshi Nakamoto first published the white paper on cryptocurrency back in 2008, and Bitcoin was … Continued

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Introduction to Bitcoin Mining

Mid-19th century California gold miners were called “forty-niners” after the year 1849, but this rush actually spanned from 1848-1853; it took five years for a quarter-million people to flood the state in search of “free wealth”. Satoshi Nakamoto first published the white paper on cryptocurrency back in 2008, and Bitcoin was launched in 2009. Today, in 2019, there are at least a million bitcoin miners around the world. A single bitcoin (or “1 BTC”) is worth almost $10,000, give or take a few hundred dollars, and there are around 1,800 new bitcoins mined every day, meaning there’s a whopping $18,000,000 being ‘created’ every day.

Not bad for ten years. No wonder everyone wants to learn how to mine bitcoin.

A Brief History on Money

Cryptocurrency is math that can be used as money.

Money is, fundamentally, an accounting of debt; you owe someone for a good or service, and giving them money erases that debt. Banks are giant ledgers, accounting for every transaction – when you paid for your coffee, this “ledger” sees that you lost $2 and the coffee shop gained $2.

Paper dollar bills do not record this specific transaction – who lost and who gained those $2 – but they act as evidence of a transaction having taken place at some point. In fiat currency, a state is the ultimate arbiter or holder of all the debts – and the one that mints, or makes, the currency in the first place. They account for how much currency they put out, and approximately how much is present now; the only road bump being that they do not know every transaction in between.

In cryptocurrency, no one person or entity controls a central ledger, because this “ledger” is effectively on every computer connected to the network of that currency; everyone has it. Since each unit of the cryptocurrency is composed of math, as opposed to physical substances like paper or gold, this math effectively records every transaction

So Where Does it Come From?

Fiat currencies are “made” (or rather, minted) by states, and accounted for by banks, but these currencies are often directly or indirectly made from precious metals that are mined from the Earth – which is why so many people flooded California in the mid-19th century. Minting is a middle step between the mining and the currency.

Cryptocurrency cuts out that middle step; bitcoin is “minted” and made from BTC mining.

If bitcoin is commercialized math, then mining is the process of solving all its equations. A common, yet accurate, joke explanation is, “imagine if you could solve puzzles, then use those solved puzzles as money”. Bitcoin is that, but on a much larger and astronomically more complex scale; bitcoin mining is both the process of solving puzzles, and the process of verifying other solves puzzles.

That said, these “puzzles” (called “blocks” in BTC mining) are operating on a very complicated scale. BTC mining is basically the process of racing to correctly the correct number out of 115,792,090,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 possible options – and doing so hundreds, thousands, maybe even millions of times a day. This takes some pretty hefty computing power.

How to Mine Bitcoin

Despite a lot of chatter about bitcoin mining software, it is really a matter of hardware; software is just the most accessible way to access this hardware.

“Winning” or solving – and receiving payout for – is a combination of computational power and a bit of luck. If you accomplish this, you can get about 12.5 bitcoins, though starting in 2020, that will become 6.25. The number of bitcoins you receive for solving a block cuts in half every 210,000 blocks – which is roughly every four years, since the blocks get more and more complicated over time. This will keep going until 21 million bitcoins have been mined, a cap built into the system. There are currently only 3.17 million bitcoin left to be mined.

How to Mine Bitcoin in the Hard(ware) Way

There are two types of “miners” you can buy: application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) or graphics processing unit (GPU). These are not only very expensive to buy, but they also take up a lot of electricity and require a powerful network connection. This is why mining calculators exist – these are various apps and sites into which you can input details on your miner, your power cost, and your network cost, to figure out how much profit (if any, even) you will turn.

It is usually pretty low, and these days, mining with your own hardware is only really advised for people who already happen to have lots of hardware and great network on hand, and would not need to go out of their way to get those.

That just leaves…

How to Mine Bitcoin With Bitcoin Mining Software

At 12.5 BTC per block, when bitcoins are worth $10,000 each, that’s $1,250,000 on the line every time you are competing with other miners to “guess the right number” first. This takes far more computer power than most people can afford on their own.

As such, the most common way to get in on BTC mining is to join a collective of miners and “rent” the mining tools – known predominantly as cloud mining.

The biggest advantage is that there is a much lower barrier to entry when you cloud mine bitcoins. The biggest disadvantage is that instead of getting the reward all to yourself, you are splitting those bitcoins with other people, and typically a lot of them. Winning a million dollars doesn’t mean as much when you’re splitting it with a million people.

Step 1: Choose Your Wallet

Before you start working for a job, you want to know how you will be getting your pay. By the same token, before you start mining for bitcoins, you should know where you will keep your bitcoins once you earn them.

Online wallets are typically the most convenient, and easiest to use. They are also typically the most efficient for actually using your bitcoins to purchase goods and services, and you will have your bitcoins even if you lose all your devices. That said, this does put you in a similar position with a bank. If the host is experiencing heavy traffic or DDOS attacks, you may not be able to access your funds, and if they are hacked, you can lose your bitcoins entirely.

Hardware wallets are the opposite extreme. As physical objects, are completely offline, and thus cannot be hacked or otherwise remotely attacked. As long as you have your hardware wallet and a device to access it with, you will be able to access your funds. But what you gain in remote security is lost in personal security; if you lose your device or it’s physically stolen from you, you lose your bitcoins.
The middle-ground between these is “software wallets” or “desktop wallets” (though these can also be mobile apps). These are on your local device, so even if exchanges go down or are attacked, you still have your bitcoins, and the only way you can lose them to remote exploitation is if you, the specific individual, are targeted and hacked, which is very unlikely. But, it can still be used to conduct transactions and otherwise go online as necessary. That said, this is also vulnerable to loss if you lose your physical device (i.e. if someone steals your computer).

Step 2: Find Your Cloud

Mining companies are the computing clouds or collectives of miners. While joining such a company might be couched in terms of renting the hardware, another way to look at it might be that you are investing.

The amount you invest, or the rate at which you rent, is known as a “mining package”, which you pick once you join a mining company. You can also invest ahead of time in new technology that will be coming out at a later date. That said, investing in something that doesn’t exist yet is always a heavy risk.

There are many sites in which you can find comparisons between companies, including user ratings and reviews. Be careful with the
reviews – while they can be insightful, many are also full of people attempting to get new ‘recruits’ specifically with referral codes, which will net the refer-er a small bonus or profit.

Step 3: Pick Your Pool

A “pool” is basically the team of miners that you choose to join up with, and contribute your invest or computing power. If you are just starting out mining bitcoins, you should start by joining an “older” (or rather, more established and vouched-for) pool, and perhaps one with lower fees. The payout or profit from these will usually be on the low side, but they are also less risky.

As you get the hang of bitcoin mining and learn how pools work, you can start venturing out to other pools that aren’t as established and carry higher risks, but also higher rewards.

Buy Bitcoin, Ethereum, XRP, and other cryptocurrencies on Coinsquare, the world’s home for cryptocurrency.


Coinsquare

Source: Coinsquare: Mining Bitcoin: How to Mine Bitcoin

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Source: https://cryptocanucks.com/mining-bitcoin-how-to-mine-bitcoin/

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Palantir Now Accepts Bitcoin, Mulling Investment: Report

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The information on or accessed through this website is obtained from independent sources we believe to be accurate and reliable, but Decentral Media, Inc. makes no representation or warranty as to the timeliness, completeness, or accuracy of any information on or accessed through this website. Decentral Media, Inc. is not an investment advisor. We do not give personalized investment advice or other financial advice. The information on this website is subject to change without notice. Some or all of the information on this website may become outdated, or it may be or become incomplete or inaccurate. We may, but are not obligated to, update any outdated, incomplete, or inaccurate information.

You should never make an investment decision on an ICO, IEO, or other investment based on the information on this website, and you should never interpret or otherwise rely on any of the information on this website as investment advice. We strongly recommend that you consult a licensed investment advisor or other qualified financial professional if you are seeking investment advice on an ICO, IEO, or other investment. We do not accept compensation in any form for analyzing or reporting on any ICO, IEO, cryptocurrency, currency, tokenized sales, securities, or commodities.

See full terms and conditions.

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Source: https://cryptobriefing.com/palantir-now-accepts-bitcoin-mulling-investment-report/

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VulcanVerse’s Marketplace Volume Triples from $5m to $15m, $20M Giveaway to Follow

Press Release: Newly-launched decentralized gaming platform, VulcanVerse, offers $20m giveaway as volume on its in-game marketplace triples.  11th May 2021, Cardiff, United Kingdom – Decentralized gaming platform, VulcanVerse is launching into the online gaming world, with record growth in users following a successful token sale.  The gaming platform is positioning itself as a pioneer in […]

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Press Release: Newly-launched decentralized gaming platform, VulcanVerse, offers $20m giveaway as volume on its in-game marketplace triples. 

11th May 2021, Cardiff, United Kingdom – Decentralized gaming platform, VulcanVerse is launching into the online gaming world, with record growth in users following a successful token sale. 

The gaming platform is positioning itself as a pioneer in NFT-based gaming, an area that has recently seen a huge surge in interest as a result of the wider NFT-mania that permeated the cryptocurrency market earlier this year. VulcanVerse expects to capitalize by converting this newly-found interest in online gaming into increased adoption for its own unique virtual world. 

With that aim, VulcanForged, the project behind VulcanVerse, has made several integrations with other blockchain-based platforms, including Polygon (formerly Matic), to broaden its reach. The team recently completed a sale for the platform’s native token, PYR, aimed at stimulating activity in its in-world marketplace. VulcanVerse wants to establish itself as a leader in decentralized gaming.

VulcanVerse In Demand 

Indeed, both have increased demand for VulcanVerse’s fantasy platform. PYR completed a successful token sale just over three weeks ago which led to a threefold increase in the volume from $5 million to $15 million on the platform’s marketplace, Vulcan Marketplace. The marketplace, which allows users to trade NFTs used in the fantasy game, is now one of the top five NFT marketplaces in the cryptocurrency space as a whole. 

As well as arctic as the native currency for the Vulcan Marketplace, PYR is also a utility token that can be used for staking, fee settlements, DeFi game launchpads, platform pools, and play-to-earn benefits as well as discounts for items on the Vulcan Marketplace. PYR is now available on Uniswap and Quickswap DEX.

In addition to sound economic performance, both for PYR and the platform’s own marketplace, VulcanVerse’s team has been pushing ahead with a number of integrations to sure up the platform’s infrastructure, as well as attract new users. The team has partnered with several leading blockchain platforms, Arkane Network and Polygon. The most recent Polygon partnership sees PYR launched on the Polygon network via an adapted version of the network’s Plasma feature, a layer two solution that aims to fix Ethereum’s scalability issues. The objective is to ensure VulcanVerse’s infrastructure can handle any increased output generated by an expected influx of users as the game expands as well as gain support from more established projects.

In a bid to incentivize even more growth, the VulcanVerse team is conducting a $20m PYR giveaway, the details of which can be found here

Navigating the VulcanVerse

As well as good macro-performance, VulcanVerse’s gaming world is a carefully scripted and rich environment itself. Land is integral to the in-world gameplay, with users able to buy plots of 20×20 square meters to build on or sell later at a higher price. Although new users can explore the universe without owning land, certain features of play are only available to landowners in order to encourage the evolution of the environment through building. 

Each plot of and the tools used to build on land are associated with specific “levels” all themed after Greek mythology. Users unlock these levels in gameplay, with each new level producing higher-value land and a more complex set of building tools.

As well as land, the VulcanVerse hosts NFT-based creatures called Vulcanites. Each Vulcanite is unique, has a tailored lore and set of skills that can be upgraded. They can be used to forage materials, compete for exclusive NFTs during treasure hunts or participate in community-led mini-games and side-quests. To balance world-building and interactivity, they provide benefits for their owners and help them level up but cannot be used to negatively affect others (e.g. they cannot attack players unless it’s part of an event). 

Vulcanites can be traded as 2d game cards on the VulcanMarketplace where users can browse other users’ Vulcanite stats. 

About VulcanVerse

VulcanVerse is a virtual world set in the Greco-Roman era. It is a stand-alone game that uses blockchain technology to enable users to truly own their land and assets. Its detailed lore is written by the authors of Fighting Fantasy, a series of successful single-player role-playing gamebooks created by Steve Jackson and Ian Livingstone. Additionally, the virtual world boasts complex gaming tools and multiplayer game-playing functionalities. 

VulcanVerse is blockchain-based, with key items in the virtual world existing as NFTs on a purpose-built blockchain. Its virtual world can be accessed via a downloadable application that recently became available on Google’s Play Store. 

The team behind the virtual world consists of a number of veteran online gaming developers and enthusiasts, selected from a wide cross-section of gaming companies including Vulcan Forged, Serv Reality, Spark Labs, and Fabled Lands Ltd.

For more information on how to become part of the VulcanVerse, visit their website here.

VULCANVERSE is the source of this content. This Press Release is for informational purposes only. The information does not constitute investment advice or an offer to invest. 

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Source: https://bitcoinist.com/vulcanverses-marketplace-volume-triples-from-5m-to-15m-20m-giveaway-to-follow/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=vulcanverses-marketplace-volume-triples-from-5m-to-15m-20m-giveaway-to-follow

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