Category Archives for "crypto"

Decentraland

Imagine a virtual world where you can buy land and create an actual business on that land.

In this virtual world, you’ll find all the same things as in the analog world around you. Homes, storefronts, casinos, music halls, art galleries, etc. You would find all that but without any bureaucracy or middle man. In essence, that is Decentraland.

Found on the Ethereum blockchain, the creators of Decentraland have set up a metaverse where users can buy plots of virtual land. What they do on that land is completely up to them.

How does Decentraland work?

A next generation social media platform, Decentraland is very similar to the game Second Life, but with some major differences.

Similar to Second Life, users operate in a virtual world and interact with other avatars. It’s mainly for fun, but money can be made as they have their own economy.

Here is where the differences begin. For one, the application is totally decentralized. Second Life or other metaverses are found on a central server that can be hacked or taken down at a moment’s notice. Certain rules must be followed that can be arbitrary since there is a central authority that makes the rules.

Decentraland, as its name implies, is decentralized as it is on the blockchain and not a central server. The users determine how the metaverse will operate.

The other major difference is how the application actually works. When you buy your land, you can build any type of application you want to on it and can upload things from off the application.

For example, if you are a musician, you can open a music hall that could feature a live stream of your performance. You could charge admission or people could buy your music to download, or both. And you would set up the payment processor yourself.

This is just one example. There are so many ways to use Decentraland.

The way it actually works is you would use Ether to buy MANA, the native coin. With MANA you would buy your land. Since it is on the blockchain there is a smart contract created with a ledger of ownership of the land.

Decentraland is mainly for entrepreneurs, creatives, students or other online communities, but it is really for anybody to use.

Since the MANA can appreciate, it is even ideal for investors to trade that have no desire to actually use the platform.

Technological advances are beginning to happen more rapidly than ever. Finally the promise of virtual reality becoming mainstream and used by the masses is not something that looks far away in the future.

The creators of Decentraland understand that more and more people, and not just gamers, will use VR on an everyday basis and want to be ahead of the curve for when it hits critical mass.

The blockchain technology has enabled this vision in ways that were simply not possible a few years ago. It has the potential to surpass even Facebook and other social media platforms.

Why just share content on a static platform with rules created by a central authority, when you could visit your friends in a virtual world and make your own rules? It’s an intriguing idea that has massive potential, both socially and economically for a lot of people.

Nucleus Vision

With more and more commerce moving online, it seems that the old Brick and Mortar stores are not long for this world.

In the old vein of “Adapt or Die”, there is a solution for retailers to stay relevant in the digital age. Nucleus Vision is an app on the blockchain that will bring traditional, analog shopping into the modern digital age.

Nucleus Vision is attempting to bridge the gap between the online and offline world by using the Internet of Things to create a contactless identification system.

How does Nucleus Vision work?

The Nucleus Vision app allows retailers to tap into customer’s data to enable a customer focused shopping experience.

Basically, what happens is that a customer who is on the app has their preferences and shopping habits saved in their personal profile on the blockchain. When the customer enters a retailer in the network, it signals to the store that they have entered and asks permission to interact with the customer.

Wait, you say. I am barraged by ads all day long. Why would I want to open myself up to a more intrusive advertising program?

Legitimate question. The way to look at it is two fold.

As you enter a store, you are there because you have a need for a specific product or service. That’s obvious. With this system, you can have a tailor made shopping experience that can have you leaving the store satisfied that you got exactly what you came for.

If that isn’t enough incentive then the fact that you are rewarded with nCash by the retailer for enabling them to use your data. nCash is the native coin used on the app that can be used to make purchases in any retailer that uses Nucleus Vision, can be cashed out for fiat currency or even traded for other crypto currencies.

It amounts to a win win for both the retailer and consumer.

Because the app is on the blockchain, you don’t have to worry that your data is being bought or sold or that sensitive information could be up for grabs by a hacker breaching the security of a central server. Every transaction is there for anybody to see which keeps everybody honest and the system trustless.

What is the Vision Behind Nucleus Vision?

The app is currently being used for retail to show that it is viable. The possibilities, however, are almost endless.

Using the same Internet of Things technology without RFID or Wifi, could see a more secure smart home or even smart city. Transportation can be improved, especially as self driven cars become more established.

Healthcare industries can be streamlined. Imagine a person having a health issue entering the emergency room at the hospital and the app communicating the problem instantly to the nurses.

Agriculture can be improved and made more efficient which could lead to millions of people having more access to food.

The Internet of Things is already being used, so it makes sense for the blockchain to make it an even more secure and efficient system.

Nucleus Vision hopes that by being an early adopter to using IoT technology on the blockchain with their own proprietary system, they will revolutionize how people and things interact with each other.

Hshare

One of the biggest advantages to using blockchain technology is the security of it. It is very difficult to hack. Where there is a weak link, however, is when moving crypto currencies to an exchange.

When one reads about a huge amount of coins vanishing or being hacked it is almost always when the money was on an exchange or in an open wallet.

Hshares recognizes the need for more security when moving money around so they devised a way to use a sidechain to run parallel to other chains like Bitcoin.

 This will make it easy to send money from one chain to another. As things stand now, blockchains cannot communicate with each other and need to use exchanges. With a sidechain they finally will be able to move around without an exchange

How does Hshare work?

Hshare, also called Hcash, is a DAO (Decentralized Autonomous Organization).

This acts as a way for blockchains to communicate with each other. In the case of a sidechain to transfer coins from one chain to another, a signal is sent from one block on one chain to another block on another giving the new block the hash information about the transaction. While doing this it also lets the main block know that the coins are there and that they aren’t being used somewhere else at the same time.

This immobilizes the coins and the information about the transaction is stored at the address on both chains where the movement took place.

The protocol for this to work is a mashup of Proof of Stake and Proof of Work. It works in the same way a PoF protocol works in the sense that blocks are mined by using computational power. In addition, though the mining goes to the witness who has not only the most computing power but the most tokens, so a Proof of Stake protocol.

This works to keep users engaged which makes validating blocks much faster than a standard Proof of Work protocol.

The biggest benefit for some to use Hshare is the fact that all information is anonymous. A major complaint about using cryptocurrencies to make payments is that whoever your paying knows exactly how much you are carrying in crypto.

With Hshares, just enough information is made available to validate the block without giving away any sensitive information. They will use zero information proofs to mask the identity of the sender and receiver through the use of advanced cryptography to verify transactions without sharing information about the transaction with miners.

The carrier of that information is the native token called Hcash. It will be used to pay for resource fees used in the network, such as deployment of smart contracts, operating and upgrading of systems (transaction fees, cross-chain data transfer fees).

Libertarians, cypherpunks and the unbanked have long been holding onto this idea of a system that can safely and anonymously run off the traditional financial grid.  If this system proves to be viable, then it will pave the way for a truly decentralized crypto currency.

SALT

SALT, Secured Automated Lending Platform, is a collateral based lending platform that lets you put up your digital assets, ie, crypto currency, in exchange for fiat currency.

Traditional lending is not only out of reach for some people, but, also not very efficient even for people who would normally qualify for a loan.

It can be difficult to secure a loan, it almost always takes too long and it usually expensive. Using the blockchain for a peer to peer lending platform solves those problems.

The loans are trustless and collateralized by using crypto as security.

How Does SALT Work?

SALT works as a membership based peer to peer lending platform tethered to the ERC-20 token on the Ethereum blockchain.

The native token is called Salt and must be purchased to become a member. There are three membership levels. Base, Premium and Enterprise.

The Base membership costs 1 Salt token per year and gives users loans up to $10,000 and terms of 3 to 24 months. The Premium membership costs 10 SALT tokens per year and gives you access to up to $100,000 and a line of credit with terms of 1 hour to 36 months. The Enterprise membership costs 100 SALT tokens. Including access to 1 million USD, with fiat currency selection and metered terms.

To borrow money, you will be matched automatically with a lender that suits your loan needs. In order to borrow the money, 125% of the request must be put up in digital assets.  If somehow you are unable to repay the loan, then your collateral is deducted from the unpaid remainder and given to the lender.

Benefits of using SALT for a loan

As I already mentioned, probably the biggest benefit to using SALT is access to capital quickly, cheaply and securely. Banks are notorious for having their central servers hacked and sensitive information about their clients compromised. The blockchain nullifies that fear.

Since it is instantaneous, it is ideal for trading when seconds count. No need to cash out your Bitcoin for a hot ICO when you can just get a quick loan.

There’s another big advantage that traditional lending institutions can’t touch. And that is the fact that if your collateral, i.e. your cryptocurrency, increases in value, you can withdraw some of the collateral or increase the principal of the loan.

How does SALT compare to EthLend or other peer to peer lending platforms?

The biggest difference the is the fact that SALT is membership based. The other difference is anybody can be a lender with EthLend where that isn’t the case with SALT. As things stand now, all loans on EthLend are in Ether where with SALT, even fiat currency can be lent and borrowed.

With either one, there is no penalty for paying a loan off early.

There is a lot to like with SALT and peer to peer blockchain lending in general, but where they are in the early stages of development, we could see some them becoming major players in the lending world.

Agrello

One of the best things about the emergence of the blockchain is how it can take expensive middlemen out of the picture. Removing gatekeepers and putting control back into individuals hands can bring the internet back to the promise it originally held.

The way that Argello has done this is to make it easy for any business, freelancer or contractor to make a customized smart contract to automate business logistics.

Making agreements that use machine reading also available to be read by humans that can be contractually binding is efficient and inexpensive.

No need for a lawyer or even a programmer to create these smart contracts.

Agrello provides an Artificial Intelligence counselor that will guide the clients through the creation of contacts and give them notifications on their legal rights and obligations.

How does Agrello work?

The Agrello Foundation has built their Dapp on the Ethereum blockchain and uses smart contracts.

By using Artificial Intelligence, a “counselor” guides the user through a series of processes to craft the agreement by providing them with the legal rights and obligations necessary for the contract to be legally binding.

The contract is then translated into a smart contract code, digitally signed and then stored on the blockchain. Since the smart contract is immutable and cannot be edited or changed in any way, it can be admitted into court proceedings. And it can also be read in plain language.

How can Agrello be used?

It can be used to create a Just in Time logistics delivery system by automating the contracts necessary along the way. Salary negotiations can be streamlined, government bureaucracy can be eradicated (in theory!) and sales agreements can all be done quickly and cheaply.

Agrello is an Estonian company and already the Estonian government is using this to create digitally signed documents to streamline their bureaucracy.

A huge benefit is also that it is borderless. Since it is in the form of a smart contract, it can be seen by everybody no matter where they are in the world. It’s trustless and transparent.

The native coin is called Delta and is based on the Ethereum ERC20 standard.

All the transactions on the platform will get put on a hash on the blockchain, so the DLT will be burnt to to do this. In addition, all the fees to create the contracts, digital signatures and the Know Your Customer services will need to be paid with the Delta coin.

Agrello also hopes to create a community of lawyers with verified legal accreditations who belong to bar associations of the jurisdiction associated with a specific contract template. These users will receive deposits of Delta to ensure that the templates they review are of the highest quality.

So many industries are being disrupted by the blockchain. It was only a matter of time before the lawyer sector followed suit.

The only thing missing at this point to become adopted by the masses in a mainstream way is the ubiquitous issue of scalability. As the Ethereum blockchain addresses that issue, we could see this taking off in a big way.

Zilliqa

There is a space race going on with regards to blockchain development.

Like during the race to be the first to go to space, different platforms are looking to be the one to solve the biggest problems with blockchain.

Anybody paying attention to the crypto space knows that speed, cost and scalability are the problems holding the blockchain back from mass adoption.

Ziliqa thinks they may have solved these issues which will revolutionize the blockchain world.

How does Zilliqa work?

Blocking off sections of the network into what’s called sharding should be able to speed up the validating process.

Within these shards is the blockchain in miniature. Instead of trying to validate a block at a time, with a block needing to be validated before another can be added to it, the voting is done within the shard.

The shards also keep the blockchain from taking a linear form, so the individual shards can all have their blocks validated independently and then added to the blockchain as they reach consensus. In essence, this theoretically means that there could be an infinite number of transactions done simultaneously.

Think of it like dividing a workload. The more shards there are, the more the network divides the consensus load between shards, keeping computing demands relatively stable.

The weak link in this type of system is the fact that the nodes all need to communicate with each other to share the stored data that smart contracts need.

To get around this, Ziqila created their own programming language called Scilla that differentiates between state and function. In other words it separates the information that is being shared between the shards so they can communicate but not change states.

Right now the code is not open, but later on they plan to show the code.

How is the ZIL token used?

Like on any other platform on a blockchain a native token is needed not only to fund the project, but also to be used across the ecosystem.

ZIL is used as a mining incentive, gas for contract execution and to pay for transaction fees.

ZIL is an ERC-20 token based on the Ethereum blockchain.

So, after all is said and done, how is Ziliqa different from Ethereum? It seems Ethereum is trying to solve the same scalability issues that Ziliqa says they can fix.

The main difference is the scale of the blockchain already in existence with Ethereum. Though the team at Ethereum are working on ways to solve the problems as we speak, Ziliqa is hoping that since they are taking a novel approach that can be done faster than recreating an already existing ecosystem like Ethereum, that they will be first across the gate.

Can Ziliqa do it? They have already performed a stress test on the platform to see if they were on the right track and were able to execute almost 2,000 transactions per second. Compare that to Ethereum’s 20 or so at the current time. 2,000 sounds like a success when you compare it to Ethereum, but it pales compared to Visa’s 45,000 per second.

Until the blockchain can scale to that frequency, then mass adoption will have to wait.

Bitshares

Anytime you hear about a coin getting hacked or thousands of coins disappearing, it inevitably is because the exchange was breached. Since the blockchain is so hard to hack and exchanges are found on traditional central servers, it has become an easy target.

Bitshares is the first exchange to set itself up on the blockchain becoming a truly trustless and decentralized exchange.

The reason exchanges are not usually on a blockchain is because the verifying of blocks is painfully slow. This is especially true when talking about big Proof of Work chains like Bitcoin. Taking hours to validate a transaction could mean missing out on a hot coin as the value is rising.

BitShares is a peer to peer distributed ledger. It works with a Delegated Proof of Stake protocol. By voting for delegates or Witnesses, the validation process is streamlined.

By using the Delegated Proof of Stake (DPoS), transactions can be done quickly. Though it has yet to be tested, in theory BitShares can handle 100,000 transactions per second compared to Bitcoin’s 5 per second.

The native token, BTS, needs to be bought to act as collateral on the exchange. So, even if you are not planning to invest in BTS you need to buy some to buy whatever token you are interested in. The result is that the coin is more about using for equity than it is for use as an altcoin you would want to hold.

There are a couple of other benefits to using Bitshares as an exchange besides the trustless nature of it.

For one, you can put up any kind of asset. These assets can be used to exchange for fiat or crypto currency and since you aren’t trying to sell them can give you nearly instant access to funds. Those funds can be used to trade for other currencies on the Bitshares exchange or withdrawn.

The other benefit is the use of Smartcoins. Smartcoins are tied to fiat currencies that don’t fluctuate. For instance, the bitUSD will always equal one US dollar. Whatever the dollar is worth is what the bitUSD will be worth.

Buying Smartcoins and holding them while you wait for a dip in the market is a great way to take part in trading on an exchange without worrying about the volatility of a coin.

The last thing that sets Bishares apart from traditional exchanges is the community aspect and the democratization of it.

Delegates that have stake, ie own coins, can vote to approve or disapprove projects and decide for themselves what direction the platform should move in without a central authority involved in making decisions. Even the employees of the company have a stake in the future of it as they can propose projects and then the tokens are used to fund those projects.

The beauty of this project is the true decentralized nature of it. They didn’t just set out to create a trustless exchange, they also want to build a vision of what the blockchain can achieve by taking control away from authorities and putting it back in the hands of the people using these services. 

Cryptocurrency FAQ’s

GENERAL QUESTIONS

Q: What is cryptocurrency?

Cryptocurrency is a digital currency in which encryption techniques are used to regulate the generation of units of currency and verify the transfer of funds, operating independently of a central bank. It is currency associated with the internet that uses cryptography which is the process of converting legible information into an almost uncrackable code, to track purchases and transfers using mathematical .

Cryptography was conceived due to the imperative need for secure communication in the Second World War. It has evolved in the digital era with elements of mathematical theory and computer science to become a way to secure communications, information and money online.

The first cryptocurrency was Bitcoin (released 2009). Now that Bitcoin is becoming widely accepted as a currency, there are now more than 900 currencies in the world.

Q: What is a Bitcoin?

Bitcoins are digital money called “cryptocurrency”.

Bitcoin is the world's largest and most respected cryptocurrency and the “Grandfather” of all the various virtual currencies that are available today, which is stored electronically. It is not centrally controlled by any bank or any person, but is created through blockchains (software that solves mathematical problems) by many, many people & businesses.

Bitcoin was created in 2008 and started at less than a cent per Bitcoin and was recently trading at over $3,500 a coin. It is quickly becoming mainstream and more accepted currency in the world. There are currently Bitcoin ATM’s now being dispersed throughout the world where people can invest in Bitcoin with their cash.

One of Bitcoin’s most distinguishing characteristics is that it’s completely decentralized. Essentially its network is not controlled by any one institution (such as Federal Reserve). This makes a lot of people feel more secure due to the reason that banks or institutions won’t be able to control their currency.

Q: What is Bitcoin’s history?

Bitcoin is the first implementation of a concept called "cryptocurrency", which was first described in 1998 by Wei Dai on the cypherpunks mailing list, suggesting the idea of a new form of money that uses cryptography to control its creation and transactions, rather than a central authority. The first Bitcoin specification and proof of concept was published in 2009 in a cryptography mailing list by Satoshi Nakamoto. Satoshi left the project in late 2010 without revealing much about himself. The community has since grown exponentially with all types of developers working on Bitcoin.

Satoshi's anonymity often raised unjustified concerns, many of which are linked to misunderstanding of the open-source nature of Bitcoin. The Bitcoin protocol and software are published openly and any developer around the world can review the code or make their own modified version of the Bitcoin software. Just like current developers, Satoshi's influence was limited to the changes he made being adopted by others and therefore he did not control Bitcoin. As such, the identity of Bitcoin's inventor is probably as relevant today as the identity of the person who invented paper.

Q: What is a AltCoin?

AltCoin (Alternative Coin) are the hundreds (soon to be thousands) of various cryptocurrencies currently in the world. There is a lot of competition for positioning power (just like stock market shares), but many coins are not created as part of the “struggle for power” as they serve a more humble purpose. Similar to Bitcoin, AltCoins are not regulated by any bank, just the market.

Q: Why Use Bitcoin or other Cryptocurrency?

There’s many advantages to using Cryptocurrency:

  • Quick, Easy and Convenient - You can send and receive cryptocurrency anywhere in the world at any time in a matter of a few minutes.
  • Low Fees – Normally, the fees for cryptocurrency transactions are very small. Cryptocurrency fees can fluctuate due to the dynamic fee market. In addition, some wallets will also allow you to pay a fee you’re willing to spend. With higher fees, you’ll get faster confirmation of your transactions.
  • Secure – When using cryptocurrency, users remain in control of their transactions. You’re also protected from identity theft since cryptocurrency payments can be made without personal information associated with the transaction.
  • Transparent - All cryptocurrency transactions are fully available on the blockchain for anybody to verify and use in real-time.

Q: Who controls the Cryptocurrency networks?

Nobody owns any of the cryptocurrency networks in similarity to which nobody owns the technology behind email.

Cryptocurrency is controlled by all cryptocurrency users around the world. While developers are improving the software, they can't force a change in the Bitcoin & cryptocurrency protocol because all users are free to choose what software and version they use. In order to stay compatible with each other, all users need to use software complying with the same rules. Bitcoin, for instance, can only work correctly with a complete consensus among all users. Therefore, all users and developers have a strong incentive to protect this consensus.

Q: How does Cryptocurrency work?

Cryptocurrency transactions occur between electronic Cryptocurrency wallets, and are digitally verified and signed for security. In light of the massive public ledger called the “blockchain”, users are aware of all transactions, and its history and when Cryptocurrencies were generated can be tracked.
If you send some Cryptocurrency to a friend for instance, that transaction will have three pieces of information:

  • The amount of Cryptocurrency you wish to send.
  •  The recipient’s wallet address, generated randomly and consisting of a sequence of letters and numbers – this is where you’ll be sending your funds.
  • A private key, which is also a unique sequence of numbers and letters exclusively available to you. This key will allow you to access your wallet.
  • Once a transaction is set up, it makes its way into the Bitcoin network where it awaits verification. Through the process of mining, miners use software to solve mathematical problems. Once completed, the transaction successfully moves into the blockchain.

Q: What is blockchain?

The blockchain, is a huge, shared public ledger where the entire Cryptocurrency network is situated. All verified transactions ever processed are added to the blockchain, where everyone can see information pertaining to Cryptocurrency wallets and verify their balances.

The authenticity of each transaction is protected by digital signatures corresponding to the sending addresses, allowing all users to have full control over sending bitcoins from their own Bitcoin addresses. In addition, anyone can process transactions using the computing power of specialized hardware and earn a reward in bitcoins for this service. This is often called "mining".

Q: How safe is it?

Most of the trust in Cryptocurrency comes from the fact that it requires no trust at all. Cryptocurrency is fully open-source and decentralized. This means that anyone has access to the entire source code at any time. Any developer in the world can therefore verify exactly how Cryptocurrency works.

All transactions and Cryptocurrencies issued into existence can be transparently consulted in real-time by anyone. All payments can be made without reliance on a third party and the whole system is protected by heavily peer-reviewed cryptographic algorithms like those used for online banking. No organization or individual can control Cryptocurrency, and the network remains secure even if not all of its users can be trusted.

LEGAL QUESTIONS

Q: Is It Legal?

Owning and gambling with cryptocurrencies is completely legal in most countries, however there are a few countries around the world who has prohibited their citizens to own different coins. If you are not from India or China, then you will not need to worry about any legal issues from owning the cryptocurrencies, as the rest of the world has accepted them and started to work with the virtual currency and not against it.

 Download the app’s “ETHNews” & “BTCNews” on your smartphone for updated information as soon as it comes in.

Q: Is It Safe & Secure?

Just like most other things online, cryptocurrencies are not 100% safe (but banks, stock markets and even credit cards aren’t fully safe…)  However if you protect yourself by having a difficult password you don't use many sources to login to your accounts, have a good antivirus program and take other safety precautions, then you will not have to worry about anything when you “gamble” with cryptocurrency online. The sites for utilizing cryptocurrencies take all the necessary security measures as well, to ensure that hackers and other bad people will not be able to infiltrate their system and take any funds or data.

Bitcoin, for instance, has a strong track record for security and privacy, thanks to its protocol and cryptography. With private keys, individuals’ wallets are kept secure. The only way this would not be true is if users lose this information.

Q: Hasn’t it been used for illegal activities before?

Bitcoin & Cryptocurrency is money, and money has always been used both for legal and illegal purposes. Cash, credit cards and current banking systems widely surpass cryptocurrency in terms of their use to finance crime. Cryptocurrency can bring significant innovation in payment systems and the benefits of such innovation are often considered to be far beyond their potential drawbacks.


Cryptocurrency is designed to be a huge step forward in making currency more secure and could also act as a significant protection against many forms of financial crime. In example, bitcoins are completely impossible to counterfeit. Users are always in full control of their payments and simply cannot receive unapproved charges which happens with credit card fraud.


Cryptocurrency transactions are irreversible and immune to fraudulent chargebacks. Cryptocurrency allows currency to be secured against theft and loss using very strong and useful mechanisms such as backups, encryption, and multiple signatures.


Some concerns have been raised that Cryptocurrency could be more attractive to criminals because it can be used to make private and irreversible payments. However, these features already exist with cash and wire transfer, which are widely used and extremely established. The use of Cryptocurrency will undoubtedly be subjected to similar regulations that are already in place inside existing financial systems, and cryptocurrencies are not likely to prevent criminal investigations from being conducted.


In general, it is common for important breakthroughs to be perceived as being controversial before their benefits are well understood. The Internet is a good example among many others to illustrate this.

Q: Are Cryptocurrency Sites Regulated?

Most cryptocurrency sites are not regulated by any regulatory authority like the gambling industry is.

However, this is simply due to the fact that the regulatory authorities do not support sites that only accept the virtual currencies, making it impossible for them to actually become regulated. There are some sites that accepts regular funds as well as cryptocurrencies, who all have licenses to operate in the respective markets. Many businesses, especially online business such as Amazon are now accepting Bitcoin which will likely be followed by other forms of cryptocurrency.

Q: What are the cryptocurrency & taxes involved?

Bitcoin and other cryptocurrency is not a fiat currency with legal tender status in any jurisdiction, but often tax liability accrues regardless of the medium used. There is a wide variety of legislation in many different jurisdictions which could cause income, sales, payroll, capital gains, or some other form of tax liability to arise with Bitcoin, but at this current time, there is none.

Q: How about consumer protection?

Cryptocurrencies are freeing people to transact on their own terms. Each user can send and receive payments in a similar way to cash but they can also take part in more complex contracts. Multiple signatures allow a transaction to be accepted by the network only if a certain number of a defined group of persons agree to sign the transaction. This allows innovative dispute mediation services to be developed in the future. Such services could allow a third party to approve or reject a transaction in case of disagreement between the other parties without having control on their money. As opposed to cash and other payment methods, cryptocurrency transactions always leaves a public proof that a transaction did take place, which can potentially be used in a recourse against businesses with fraudulent practices.

It is also worth noting that while merchants usually depend on their public reputation to remain in business and pay their employees, they don't have access to the same level of information when dealing with new consumers. The way cryptocurrency works allows both individuals and businesses to be protected against fraudulent chargebacks while giving the choice to the consumer to ask for more protection when they are not willing to trust a particular merchant (since the transaction is one time and instant).

ECONOMY QUESTIONS

Q: Is it anonymous?

Cryptocurrency  transactions are not tied to any personal information which allows users to protect their privacy. However, since all cryptocurrency transactions are public knowledge and permanently on the blockchain, other users can see the activity associated to a particular wallet address—hence not being 100% anonymous. Most people don’t look into this even though it’s possible to. It is highly recommended to only use cryptocurrency addresses once to avoid your identity being revealed either through a specific purchase or other means.

Q: What are the advantages of cryptocurrency?

  • Payment freedom - It is possible to send and receive cryptocurrency  anywhere in the world at any time. No bank holidays. No borders. No bureaucracy. Bitcoin allows its users to be in full control of their money.
  • Choose your own fees - There is no fee to receive cryptocurrency, and many wallets let you control how large a fee to pay when spending. For instance, higher fees can encourage faster confirmation of your transactions. Fees are unrelated to the amount transferred, so it's possible to send 100,000 bitcoins for the same fee it costs to send 1 bitcoin. Additionally, merchant processors exist to assist merchants in processing transactions, converting cryptocurrency to fiat currency and depositing funds directly into merchants' bank accounts daily. As these services are based on cryptocurrency, they can be offered for much lower fees than with PayPal or credit card networks.
  • Fewer risks for merchants - Cryptocurrency transactions are secure, irreversible, and do not contain customers’ sensitive or personal information. This protects merchants from losses caused by fraud or fraudulent chargebacks, and there is no need for PCI compliance. Merchants can easily expand to new markets where either credit cards are not available or fraud rates are unacceptably high. The net results are lower fees, larger markets, and fewer administrative costs.
  • Security and control - Cryptocurrency users are in full control of their transactions; it is impossible for merchants to force unwanted or unnoticed charges as can happen with other payment methods. Cryptocurrency payments can be made without personal information tied to the transaction. This offers strong protection against identity theft. Cryptocurrency users can also protect their money with backup and encryption.
  • Transparent and neutral - All information concerning cryptocurrency supply itself is readily available on the blockchain for anybody to verify and use in real-time. No individual or organization can control or manipulate the cryptocurrency protocol because it is cryptographically secure. This allows the core of cryptocurrency to be trusted for being completely neutral, transparent and predictable.

Q: Can I make money with it?

Yes you absolutely can!
However, you should never expect to get rich with cryptocurrency or any emerging technology, even though other’s have proven systems that can help you increase your profits from $10k to six or seven figures. Everything has a trial period before it’s fully tested its limits. Bitcoin, for example, has been around long enough to know it will be here for a very long time, if not permanently. Major companies such as Amazon, WordPress, Reddit and many others accept Bitcoin as well as many physical store locations. There are now Bitcoin ATM’s being distributed throughout the world which will likely follow with other commercially viable coins such as Ethereum, which is quickly gaining ground.

Cryptocurrency is a growing space of innovation and there are business opportunities that also include risks. There is no guarantee that Bitcoin, in particular (or other cryptocurrencies) will continue to grow even though they have developed at a very fast rate so far. Investing time and resources on anything related to cryptocurrency requires entrepreneurship, education and consistency.

There are various ways to make money with cryptocurrency such as “sitting” on your investment, mining, trading, affiliates, sales, speculation or running new businesses. All of these methods are competitive and there is no “guarantee” of profit. It is up to each individual to make a proper evaluation of the costs and the risks involved in any such project.

But don’t worry! We’re putting together a full course about how to properly invest in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies to help you constantly boost your earning potential! (As I’ve been writing this blog, I’ve earned over $100 with crypto-inflation).

Q: Why does cryptocurrency have value?

Cryptocurrencies have value because they are useful as a form of money. Cryptocurrency has the characteristics of money (durability, portability, fungibility, scarcity, divisibility, and recognizability) based on the properties of mathematics rather than relying on physical properties (like gold and silver) or trust in central authorities (like fiat currencies / stocks & bonds).


In short, cryptocurrency is backed by mathematics. With these attributes, all that is required for a form of money to hold value is trust and adoption. In Bitcoins case, this can be measured by its growing base of users, merchants, and startups. As with all currency, Bitcoin's value comes only and directly from people willing to accept them as payment.

Q: What determines a cryptocurrencies price?

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The price of any particular cryptocurrency is determined by supply and demand. When demand for cryptocurrency increases, the price increases, and when demand falls, the price falls. For instance, there are only a limited number of bitcoins in circulation and new bitcoins are created (minted) at a predictable and decreasing rate, which means that demand must follow this level of inflation to keep the price stable.

Because cryptocurrency is still a relatively small market compared to what it could (or will) be, it doesn't take significant amounts of money to move the market price up or down, and thus the price of a bitcoin is still very volatile.

Q: Can cryptocurrency become “worthless”?

Essentially, yes. But it’s highly unlikely that it will happen anytime soon. It’s rapidly expanding every single day and some of the largest conglomerates in the world are currently accepting it. This means more stability and with more stability becomes a constantly inflating price.

History is littered with currencies that failed and are no longer used, such as the German Mark during the Weimar Republic and, more recently, the Zimbabwean dollar. Although previous currency failures were typically due to hyperinflation of a kind that cryptocurrencies makes impossible, there is always potential for technical failures, competing currencies, political issues and so on. As a basic rule of thumb, no currency should be considered absolutely safe from failures or hard times. The cryptocurrency, Bitcoin, has proven reliable for years since its inception and there is a lot of potential for it to continue to grow. However, no one is in a position to predict what the future will be for Bitcoin.

Q: Is Cryptocurrency a bubble?

A fast rise in price does not constitute a bubble. An artificial over-valuation that will lead to a sudden downward correction constitutes a bubble. Choices based on individual human action by hundreds of thousands of market participants is the cause for bitcoin's price to fluctuate as the market seeks price discovery. Reasons for changes in sentiment may include a loss of confidence in AltCoins, a large difference between value and price not based on the fundamentals of the cryptocurrency economy, increased press coverage stimulating speculative demand, fear of uncertainty, and old-fashioned irrational exuberance and greed.

Q: Is Bitcoin or other cryptocurrency a Ponzi scheme?

Absolutely not!
A Ponzi scheme is a fraudulent investment operation that pays returns to its investors from their own money, or the money paid by subsequent investors, instead of from profit earned by the individuals running the business. Ponzi schemes are designed to collapse at the expense of the last investors when there is not enough new participants.

Cryptocurrency is a free software project with no central authority. Consequently, no one is in a position to make fraudulent representations about investment returns. Like other major currencies such as gold, United States dollar, euro, yen, etc. there is no guaranteed purchasing power and the exchange rate floats freely. This leads to volatility where owners of bitcoins can unpredictably make or lose money. Beyond speculation, cryptocurrency is also a payment system with useful and competitive attributes that are being used by thousands of users and businesses.

Q: Doesn't Bitcoin unfairly benefit early adopters?

Some early adopters have large numbers of bitcoins because they took risks and invested time and resources in an unproven technology that was hardly used by anyone and that was much harder to secure properly. Many early adopters spent large numbers of bitcoins quite a few times before they became valuable or bought only small amounts and didn't make huge gains.

There is no guarantee that the price of a bitcoin or any other cryptocurrency will increase or drop. This is very similar to investing in an early startup that can either gain value through its usefulness and popularity, or just never break through. Bitcoin is still in its “infancy”, and it has been designed with a very long-term view; it is hard to imagine how it could be less biased towards early adopters, and today's users may or may not be the early adopters of tomorrow. 

Q: Won't the finite amount of bitcoins and other AltCoins be a limitation?

Bitcoin is unique in that only 21 million bitcoins will ever be created. However, this will never be a limitation because transactions can be denominated in smaller sub-units of a bitcoin, such as bits - there are 1,000,000 bits in 1 bitcoin. Any AltCoins can be divided up to 8 decimal places (0.00000001) and potentially even smaller units if that is ever required in the future as the average transaction size decreases.

Q: Won't Bitcoin and other cryptocurrency fall in a deflationary spiral?

The deflationary spiral theory says that if prices are expected to fall, people will move purchases into the future in order to benefit from the lower prices. That fall in demand will in turn cause merchants to lower their prices to try and stimulate demand, making the problem worse and leading to an economic depression.

Although this theory is a popular way to justify inflation amongst central bankers, it does not appear to always hold true and is considered controversial amongst economists. Consumer electronics is one example of a market where prices constantly fall but which is not in depression. Similarly, the value of bitcoins has risen over time and yet the size of the Bitcoin economy has also grown dramatically along with it. Because both the value of the currency and the size of its economy started at zero in 2009, Bitcoin is a counterexample to the theory showing that it must sometimes be wrong.

Notwithstanding this, Bitcoin is not designed to be a deflationary currency. It is more accurate to say Bitcoin is intended to inflate in its early years, and become stable in its later years. The only time the quantity of bitcoins in circulation will drop is if people carelessly lose their wallets by failing to make backups.

With a stable monetary base and a stable economy, the value of the currency should constantly go up in value. However, many other AltCoins are currently in the system and being created which adds more power to the stability of cryptocurrency being around for awhile if not it being the new main source of currency in the not-so-distant future.

Q: Isn't speculation and volatility a problem for Bitcoin?

This is a chicken and egg situation. For bitcoin's price to stabilize, a large scale economy needs to develop with more businesses and users. For a large scale economy to develop, businesses and users will seek for price stability. This is actually happening as you read this...

Fortunately, volatility does not affect the main benefits of Bitcoin as a payment system to transfer money from point A to point B. It is possible for businesses to convert bitcoin payments to their local currency instantly, allowing them to profit from the advantages of Bitcoin without being subjected to price fluctuations.

Since Bitcoin offers many useful and unique features and properties, many users choose to use Bitcoin. With such solutions and incentives, it is possible that Bitcoin will mature and develop to a degree where price volatility will become limited.

Q: What if someone bought up all the existing bitcoins or other cryptocurrencies?

Only a fraction of bitcoins & cryptocurrencies issued to date are found on the exchange markets for sale. Cryptocurrency markets are competitive, meaning the price of an crypto coins will rise or fall depending on supply and demand.

Additionally, new AltCoins will continue to be issued for decades to come. Therefore even the most determined buyer could not buy all the bitcoins in existence. This situation isn't to suggest, however, that the markets aren't vulnerable to price manipulation; it still doesn't take significant amounts of money to move the market price up or down, and thus Bitcoin remains a volatile asset thus far.

Q: What if someone creates a better digital currency?

It’s possible as Bitcoin was the first of it’s kind and now there are over 900 AltCoins on the market. The pioneer usually sets the ground while the rest follow in pursuit trying to be “bigger and better” than the originator.

For now, Bitcoin remains by far the most popular decentralized virtual currency, but there can be no guarantee that it will retain that position. There is already a set of alternative currencies inspired by Bitcoin. It is however probably correct to assume that significant improvements would be required for a new currency to overtake Bitcoin in terms of established market, even though this remains unpredictable. Bitcoin could also conceivably adopt improvements of a competing currency so long as it doesn't change fundamental parts of the protocol.

TRANSACTIONS

Q: Where Can I Play?

There are many different poker, casino and sports betting sites that accept cryptocurrencies as a payment method. We have found the best and most trusted sites on the internet, which you can find in our Games section, where you'll also find all the relevant information you need, before you start to play.

Q: Why do I have to wait for confirmation?

Receiving notification of a payment is almost instant with any cryptocurrency transfer. However, there is a delay before the network begins to confirm your transaction by including it in a block.

A confirmation means that there is a consensus on the network that the cryptocurrencies you received haven't been sent to anyone else and are considered your property.

Once your transaction has been included in one block, it will continue to be buried under every block after it, which will exponentially consolidate this consensus and decrease the risk of a reversed transaction.

Each confirmation takes between a few seconds and 90 minutes, with 10 minutes being the average. If the transaction pays too low a fee or is otherwise atypical, getting the first confirmation can take much longer. Every user is free to determine at what point they consider a transaction sufficiently confirmed, but 6 confirmations is often considered to be as safe as waiting 6 months on a credit card transaction.

Q: How much will the transaction fee be?

Transactions can be processed without fees, but trying to send free transactions can require waiting days or weeks (because resources are being used such as manpower, computer power and electricity). Although fees may increase over time, normal fees currently only cost a tiny amount. By default, all Bitcoin wallets listed on Bitcoin.org add what they think is an appropriate fee to your transactions; most of those wallets will also give you chance to review the fee before sending the transaction.

Transaction fees are used as a protection against users sending transactions to overload the network and as a way to pay miners for their work helping to secure the network. The precise manner in which fees work is still being developed and will change over time. Because the fee is not related to the amount of bitcoins being sent, it may seem extremely low or unfairly high. Instead, the fee is relative to the number of bytes in the transaction, so using multisig or spending multiple previously-received amounts may cost more than simpler transactions. If your activity follows the pattern of conventional transactions, you won't have to pay unusually high fees.

Q: What if I receive cryptocurrency while my computer/phone is powered off?

No worries. The cryptocurrencies will appear next time you start your wallet application. Cryptocurrencies are not actually received by the software on your computer, they are appended to a public ledger that is shared between all the devices on the network. If you are sent bitcoins when your wallet client program is not running and you later launch it, it will download blocks and catch up with any transactions it did not already know about, and the bitcoins will eventually appear as if they were just received in real time. Your wallet is only needed when you wish to spend bitcoins.

Q: What does “synchronizing” mean? And what does it take so long?

Long synchronization time is only required with full node clients like Bitcoin Core. Technically speaking, synchronizing is the process of downloading and verifying all previous Bitcoin transactions on the network.

 For some cryptocurrency clients to calculate the spendable balance of your AltCoin wallet and make new transactions, it needs to be aware of all previous transactions. This step can be resource intensive and requires sufficient bandwidth and storage to accommodate the full size of the block chain. For cryptocurrencies to remain secure, enough people should keep using full node clients because they perform the task of validating and relaying transactions.

SECURITY

Q: Do Sites Need My Personal Documents?

Some sites do, some don't. Since cryptocurrencies has been created to promote being anonymous, many sites do not want your personal data or your personal documents, but simply lets you play on their site and withdraw without having to provide anything. Other sites prefer to run it more like the classic gambling site, where you will have to fill in your personal details and then submit documents, however this is very rare.

Q: Are There Any Restrictions?

There are no restrictions to who can sign up and play on the sites that are cryptocurrency only, besides the fact that they also believe that you have to be 18 years old in order to gamble online. No matter if you are from China, USA or South Africa, you can play on cryptocurrency gambling sites as long as you are over 18 years old.

Q: Can US Players Use Cryptocurrencies?

Yes. There are no laws against any cryptocurrency in the states and there are several large Bitcoin businesses running successfully as well. You can simply mine your own coins or you can purchase them through a cryptocurrency base, it is all up to you.

Q: Does Any Site Offer Bonuses?

Yes, there are several sites offering deposit bonuses when you deposit using your cryptocurrency. For poker the most common thing is to get some sort of rakeback deal, while casino and sports betting sites offers instant deposit bonuses when you join their room, providing you with a larger chance of winning a large prize.

Q: How Long Does a Deposit Take?

Depositing with any cryptocurrency takes between 10 minutes to a little over an hour, depending on which wallet you are using and how fast the transaction can be approved in the server. In rare cases deposits has been taking longer, but in general it is very fast. Should you encounter that a deposit is not credited to your account within a couple of hours, then try and contact the site as there might be some sort of error.

Q: How Long Does a Withdrawal Take?

Withdrawal timeframes depends on the site on which you are withdrawing from. The cryptocurrency system will take up to a couple of hours to process the money to your wallet, once the site has send it, but first the site you are playing on will have to process it. Usually you will receive your money within 24 hours as most sites process cash outs instantly.

Q: Are There Any Fees With Cryptocurrencies?

Yes and no. This all depends on which wallet you are using and which cryptocurrency you are sending. Should you use the official wallet of the cryptocurrency, there are usually no fees attached to sending money to a site or to another wallet, however if you use one of the large cryptocurrency wallets where you can buy and sell different cryptocurrencies, there is usually a fee of 0.20% of the amount you are sending to a site or another person.

Q: Is It Possible to Buy Less Than 1 Coin?

Yes it is. Since the different coins all have different values, it has been made possible to buy fractions of a coin, fitting the amount of money that you want to spend. To give you an example, if 1 Bitcoin is worth $4,000 and you want to buy for $400 worth of Bitcoins, you will receive 0.10BTC, which you can use to pay for goods, services, gamble or simply just to invest. The same goes for all other cryptocurrencies, making it possible for everyone to participate in the industry.

Q: Where can I buy Bitcoin, Ether and other cryptocurrency?

Use the following options to get Cryptocurrency:

  • Online Exchanges and Wallets – New to cryptocurrency? There’s a variety of exchanges and wallets that you can find, depending on your needs. Many exchanges and wallets will store amounts of digital and/or fiat currency for you – a lot like a regular bank account.
  • LocalBitcoins.com – You can search for individuals selling Bitcoin in your area. It’s easy. Simply enter the amount you wish to acquire, send the trade request and send your payment to the seller.
  • Face to Face – You also have the option of getting bitcoins in person. If you want anonymity or don’t want to deal with banks, simply acquire Bitcoin via a face-to-face transaction with a local seller.
  • Selling Goods in Exchange for cryptocurrency - Similar to barter trade, you can actually exchange goods that you own for cryptocurrency. It’s another quick and convenient way of getting more of the digital currency.
  • Bitcoin ATM - you can withdraw or deposit bitcoins using Bitcoin ATM machines near you.
  • Mining - You can also be awarded bitcoins as a miner—once you’ve verified transactions and they’ve been added to the public ledger, also known as the blockchain, you’ll be given bitcoins for your service.
  • As for paying for your bitcoins, you can use anything from hard cash, credit and debit cards to wire transfers, or even other cryptocurrencies.

Q: Where can I store my Bitcoin, Ether and other cryptocurrency?

Personally I use Exodus, because it’s been around awhile and is very trusted by users. I may move my wallet to an interface that allows wallet holdings, payout and trading, however.

Each time you move your wallet, it takes electricity, manpower and computer software, so there’s always a fee, so move it as little as possible.

The most secure way to store your CC (cryptocurrency) is with a physical wallet.

Q: How can I send & receive cryptocurrency?

Using your wallet, you can send and receive cryptocurrency using QR codes or personalized coded addresses.

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**ALWAYS MAKE SURE that you get the address correct when sending or receiving or your cryptocurrency could be gone forever...

Q: Where can I trade Bitcoin, Ether & other cryptocurrency?

The best place for this, in my opinion, is Poloniex, which is the world’s largest crypto exchange. There are specific strategies I’ll get into, in future posts about how to invest your cryptocurrency to make a MASSIVE profit!

Q: Where can I spend my cryptocurrency?

There’s plenty you can do with your CC. Spend them online or in actual stores across a variety of industries – including travel, hospitality/hotels, etc.

Q: Where can I Sell Bitcoin & other cryptocurrency?

There are three main ways to sell Bitcoin:

  • Direct Trade — The first method involves a direct trade with another person, or using an intermediary to enable the transaction, such as LocalBitcoins.com.
  • Exchanges — Use an online exchange to trade into their preferred currency, instead of another individual, to sell bitcoins.
  • Peer-to-Peer Trading— This method allows Bitcoin owners to sell their bitcoins for goods by selling them to individuals who wish to acquire cryptocurrency.

Q: Are there any transaction fees?

Normally, Bitcoin transactions have low fees. These fees fluctuate and depend on the dynamic fee market. To speed up your transactions, you can pay a certain Bitcoin fee.

MINING QUESTIONS

Q: What is Cryptocurrency mining? Where can I mine Bitcoin and other alt coins?

Bitcoin mining primarily involves adding previous Bitcoin transaction records to the blockchain. The people involved are called miners; their job is to confirm the transactions to the network by solving mathematical problems using a software, as well as work towards using the blockchain to distinguish legitimate transactions and ensure that double spending does not occur. Double spending is when the same Bitcoins have been used twice.

 The main goal of mining is to ensure security within the Bitcoin network. As a secondary goal, mining is also used to introduce Bitcoins into the system. As an incentive, miners get paid in Bitcoin for their services.

Tips, Tricks & Tactics

  • Remember the old saying, don’t keep all your eggs in one basket? Well, that applies to cryptocurrency as well. Make sure that your CC isn’t all kept in the same wallet. It’s always advisable to use multiple wallets to ensure your anonymity. Or get a physical wallet to store your CC in.

  • You should also consider using different kinds of wallet options such as desktop, mobile, web and hardware. It’s best to have a wallet that also shows graphs of how the market is moving so you can quickly make moves if you must.

  • If you’re using an exchange like Coinbase, avoid storing your cryptocurrency in an exchange wallet. Simply move your funds to a personal wallet.
  • Keep your private information, such as your private key and mnemonic key, in a safe place. Don’t forget to continuously generate new wallet addresses and use them only once.
  • Use two way or two factor authentication when accessing your wallet. This verifies your identity and enhances your wallet’s security.
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