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The Dusk Network
The Dusk Network is a privacy-oriented blockchain protocol, that anyone can use to create zero-knowledge dApps. By allowing Dusk to be openly accessible, Dusk Network aims to become the privacy infrastructure of choice for an entire ecosystem of solutions.
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MicroStrategy's $425M BTC investment thesis - "buy something that can either get cut in half or 10x"
Amidst all of the DeFi volatility, drama and excitement, Bitcoin has started to seem rather boring. Its price is more or less flat to where it was a year ago and you can’t even farm Yams with it. While some have started to view Bitcoin as a useless digital rock, someone did find an interesting use case for it. This week, more details surfaced around how MicroStrategy CEO Michael Saylor convinced the board of a publicly traded company to allocate nearly all of the company’s $500M cash position to bitcoin. Michael Saylor Saylor graduated from MIT in 1987 and founded Microstrategy at the age of 24. MicroStrategy is a “Business Intelligence” company, which basically creates software that allows companies to use their own data to drive decision making. Interesting side note - Saylor, like any good 90’s internet entrepreneur, also bought a bunch of internet domains and was the guy who ultimately sold Voice.com to Block.One (EOS) for $30M. MicroStrategy’s’ $500M Problem To most people, having $500 million in cash doesn’t sound like a problem. Up until recently, it wasn’t for large corporations either. There was a time before the ‘08 financial crisis when the risk free rate of return on cash was 5% a year. This means a company could sit on $500M, earn $25M a year for doing nothing, and have cash on hand for a rainy day. Fast forward to today, when the risk free rate of return has plummeted to 0.69% due to loose fiscal policies (money printer go BRRRR) alongside inflating asset prices, and it’s a different story. In Saylor’s own words, “we just had the awful realization that we were sitting on top of a $500 million ice cube that’s melting.” Cash is Trash So what’s a corporation to do with a $500M melting ice cube? It turns out it’s not that easy to unload half a billion dollars in a short amount of time. You could buy back half a billion of your own company’s shares. For a company like MSTR, Saylor estimated that would take 4 years. Time MiscroStrategy didn’t have. You could buy real estate. However, commercial real estate prices have collapsed post COVID while property owners still believe their assets are worth what they were in January. In other words, good luck getting a fair market price. You could buy blue chip equities. Amazon, Apple, Google, Facebook. However, your risk is symmetric. They can each fall 50% just as easily as they can go up 50%. That left Saylor with silver, gold, Bitcoin, and other alternative assets. A move the company announced it was exploring on a July earnings call. A Bold Purchase Saylor ultimately wanted something that could either get cut in half, or go up by a factor of 10. An investment akin to what buying Amazon or Apple in 2012 was. In other words, asymmetric risk. As a student of technological history, Saylor observed that the winning strategy over the last ten years has been to find some kind of “digitally dominant network” that dematerializes something fundamental to society. Apple dematerialized mobile communications. Amazon dematerialized commerce. Google dematerialized the process of gathering information. Something Saylor noted was common to all recent 10X opportunities is buying when they’ve achieved $100B+ marketcaps and are ten times the size of their next biggest competitor. As Bitcoin is the dominant digital network dematerializing money that’s 10x the size of any cryptocurrency competing to be a store-of-value (not counting ETH here), it fit the bill. Making the purchase With the thesis in place, the next thing Saylor had to do was get everyone at MicroStrategy to sign-off on the unorthodox decision. To do this, he simply made everyone go down the same Bitcoin rabbithole that most people in the industry have gone down. He made everyone at the company watch Andreas Antonopoulous videos, read The Bitcoin Standard, watch Eric Vorhees debate Peter Schiff and listen to Pomp and NLW podcasts. With no strong detractors, MicroStrategy turned to execution. They first put $250M to work purchasing 21,454 BTC in August and another $175M (16,796 BTC) in September for a total $425M and 38,250 BTC. What’s fascinating is that MicroStrategy was able to open such a large position without really moving the market or anyone even taking notice. This speaks to just how liquid of an asset BTC has become. To acquire the September tranche of BTC, Saylor disclosed that they traded continuously for 74 hours, executing 88,617 trades of .19 BTC every 3 seconds. One for the history books Skeptics noted that shares of MSTR have been on the downtrend since 2013, as the real reason behind MicroStrategy’s bold move. Regardless, the move has interesting implications for the company’s shareholders. As TBI observed, MicroStrategy is now both a software company and with ⅓ of its marketcap in Bitcoin, a pseudo Bitcoin ETF. At the time of writing, MSTR is up 20% on the week. Only time will tell if history looks back on this move as a brilliant strategic decision or a massive corporate blunder. In the short term, it scores a massive win for Bitcoin’s digital gold investment thesis. Billionaire hedge fund manager Paul Tudor Jones is in. A publicly traded corporation has made Bitcoin it’s primary treasury asset. As CFOs and fund managers around the world undoubtedly take notice, one has to wonder, who’s next? PS - I based a lot of this article on Pomp’s interview with Michael Saylor, which I recommend giving a listen. Original article Source
DITO rockets up 20%, drops 30%, then finishes flat... the Aristocrats! (Wednesday, Oct 7)
Happy Wednesday, Barkada --
The PSE closed down 28 points to 5911 ▼0.5%.
Good news! I have a couple of people who are potentially interested in sponsoring MB, so I'm excited to explore those opportunities. My goal has always been to simply be revenue neutral, and to keep MB free for everyone to enjoy. (inb4 "RAID Shadow Legends" ad) Shout-out to Christine for her suggestion to try and improve the bottom-line of MB by moving from Mailchimp to SendFox. It's something I'm going to look into, but I'm very careful about making changes. I'll have to investigate. Thanks also to Jack_ol_lantern for suggesting ways to leverage my domain to try a "roll your own" alternative, and to nikohd for suggesting I offer a bitcoin donation address. I've got lots to study this weekend! No complaints here, though. Exciting times in MB town.
[UPDATE] ABS-CBN [ABS 9.00 ▼14.93%] confirms distribution deal with Zoe TV’s rebranded “A2Z Channel”... this is just confirmation of the fire that caused the ceiling-play smoke a couple of days ago that saw the ABS stock price rise 50% intraday. According to this press release, ABS-CBN and Zoe Broadcasting Network Inc have made a deal to show “some entertainment shows and movies of ABS-CBN” on A2Z Channel 11, a newly re-branded Zoe Broadcasting Network channel that will broadcast on analog TV in Metro Manila and surrounding provinces. ABS content will start appearing on this new A2Z channel starting October 10.
MB:No details yet on what content, exactly, will be shown, but the wording of the press release is interesting. It mentions “entertainment and movies” specifically, but leaves out politically-adjacent topics like news or analysis/interview shows. The Inquirer is reporting a rumor that “It’s Showtime” and “ASAP Natin ‘To” will be part of the content to make its way to A2Z Channel 11, but that has not been confirmed. Investors will want to watch this closely to see how well ABS is able to monetize this agreement with advertising, and to see how the government reacts as more ABS content moves into this pipeline.
[UPDATE] Wild DITO CME [DITO 6.81 unch], NOW Communications [NOW 4.98 ▲13.44%], and Chelsea Logistics [C 5.90 ▼4.07%] price action in yesterday’s session... the NOW and DITO pump has been massive and constant. But this last week was especially spicy, with yesterday’s session just an absolute gong-show that caused brokerage meltdowns. DITO opened the day at P7/share, up 3% on the previous day’s close, and steadily gained to a high-water mark of P8.02/share (+18%) at around 11:45am. At 11:45am, DITO had a marketcap of P22.5bn. In the next 27 minutes, DITO would lose P7.4bn in marketcap as the price imploded to P5.38/share, swinging from an 18% gain on the day to a 21% loss. Then, over the next 30 minutes, completely erasing that loss and ending the day right where it started, at P6.81/share. 2.09 billion shares changed hands on the PSE yesterday; DITO accounted for 16% of the day’s total volume (355 million shares). The three companies combined accounted for over 28% of all shares traded.
MB:MB: The amount of market uncertainty here is incredible. Traders love it, investors hate it. DITO doesn’t even own DITO Telecommunity, or anything else of material value for that matter, NOW just diluted shareholders with a bearish low-price sweetheart deal, and Chelsea is a company of tugboats and passenger ferries that happens to own a sliver of Dennis Uy’s enigmatic telecom. NOW has a long history of playing the “press release pump and dump” game, and I can only imagine that it’s happy just to be along for the ride, fluffing feathers before a potential IPO by way of introduction. Everyone in the Philippines can sense that connectivity is a bull market, whether that be mobile data (C, GLO, TEL.... then NOW) or broadband (GLO, TEL, CNVRG)...so money just keeps pouring into telco-related stocks. And it makes sense, too, given how few options there are right now on the PSE for anything that looks both pandemic-resilient and secularly profitable. But some of these things are not like the others. Some of these things will crush it, and some will not. Be careful trading telcos that you remember whether you’re being a trader (short term) or an investor (long term). Don’t start out as a trader, forget to place stops, then wind up as an investor with an investment that’s underwater. BE CAREFUL. EDIT: Also, COL Financial, get your act together. You blew AREIT and MM, and you blew yesterday's Telecommotion. At this point, traders/investors should not make plans in reliance on COL Financial's execution of a buy or sell trade.
MB is posted to /PHinvest every Monday and Wednesday, but my newsletter goes out daily. To stay in the loop for daily email delivery, please join the barkada by signing up for the newsletter, or follow me on Twitter.
The feasibility of using one email address per online presence with ProtonMail
In Bitcoin, the receive address reuse is a bad form for transaction privacy. Because as you use the same Bitcoin address, again and again, to send and receive bitcoins, an entity that's watching the transactions happening on chain can identify that address, cluster it, and make certain inferences that degrade the user's privacy. Somewhat similar situation also exists in email usage -- certainly of today, if not 10 years ago. Today, people use a single email to sign up to twitter, youtube, facebook, all other social media, forums, newsletters, online shopping, online comments boards, their governments' online services, and more. Using that johndoe-at-example-dot-com email address over and over, on such a diverse breadth of services can degrade that user's privacy. I am aware that some of the online services (newsletters, forums, bank account services, social media, etc.) aggregate user data, package them, and sell to advertising companies under auction. So, as a user's data switches hands as a result of this (aggregated or non-aggregated) info-share between internet services, a person who looks purposefully (intel agencies, ad companies, etc.) can deduce the online presence over this pattern of repeating email addresses. For example, John might be using his single email address for twitter, some forums and amazon. And let's say, only his amazon account is linked to his real identity. So, an entity (perhaps amazon itself) who can pull user email addresses from such diverse sources on the internet, can uncover John's real identity linked to his email address, and then his social media and/or forum posts to his real name. So, the solution to this privacy degradation is using one email address per online service. The question is: is this something feasible to do with protonmail? I am aware that generating a single, unique email address at the user's whim can be used for spam, or abuse. But I believe also the privacy gains are huge. Bitcoin wallets today generate a single and unique Bitcoin receive address for each new transaction. So, can we also have protonmail (or some other email service) that generates a new email address per online service? I know that facebook+john(-at-)pm.me, or forum+john(-at-)pm.me, etc. exist. However, by simple inspection, in these cases, it's possible to deduce the email account behind these two addresses is john(-at-)pm.me. So, this doesn't really solve the aforementioned problem. What we need is totally randomized email addresses using random-phrase-generators (like Diceware passphrases) such as: randomhorse(-at-)pm.me, or coolstaple(-at-)pm.me. Also, I am aware of the services like 33mail or AnonAddy. However, relying on an external, extra service for emails adds up to the compleity, to the attack-surface, to the overall hassle. So, the question I would like to discuss is this: is this something feasible to do with protonmail?
Century Pacific ups the Coco Wars ante against Axelum (Wednesday, August 20)
Happy Wednesday, Barkada --
The PSE closed up 88 points to 6157 ▲1.44%.
Thank you verneornitier for pat on the back, and to StefanJanobski for being a reader since before the lockdown. Remember those days? Back when it was possible to consider a packed restaurant or bar to be "great atmosphere"? That's how long they've been a reader! That seems like forever ago. Thanks also to Bien for the nice email, and to Mark for his approval of my puns. My puns! Compliments like that are going to make my hair wet... you know, because my head will get tubig.
MiddleClass ▼1.17% D30 Targets ▼0.12% Fast Food ▲0.02%
Main stories covered:
Century Pacific [CNPF 16.20 ▲1.50%] signs $50m contract with Linaco Group, a Malaysia coconut producer… the multi-year deal will expand the cooperation between the two companies that started two years ago, where CNPF produces white-label coconut products for Linaco Group, which Linaco Group then re-sells under its own branding/packaging. This is sometimes known as “contract manufacturing”, “white-label”, or “OEM” (original equipment manufacturer), but it all means the same thing: Company A makes the product and sells it to Company B, and Company B then sells the product to the public under Company B’s branding and packaging.
MB:CNPF is a recent entrant into the coconut business, but has done well for itself since doing so, supplying Vita Coco under a long-term contract, and branching out into several coconut product categories like desiccated coconut, virgin coconut oil, coconut flour, and coconut milk. CNPF appears to be the main competitor of Axelum Resources [AXLM 2.36 ▼0.84%], which recently revealed that it struggled to source coconuts during the ECQ lockdown and left many customer orders unfilled as a result of prioritizing “its most important customers”. CNPF did not make clear if it suffered from the same supply chain issues, with the underlying coconut market growing for both, it will be interesting to see how this emerging rivalry plays out.
Vantage Equities [V 1.12 ▲10.89%] profit ▲118% y/y… Q2/20 profit of P418m, up 118% from Q2/19 profit of P191m. V is an investment holding company that invests directly in stocks, bonds, and other companies. V owns a payments and remittances subsidiary that noted a 70% decrease in net income. V attributes this drop first to “stiff competition” in the remittance space, and second to the COVID pandemic. The other side of V’s business, the management of assets like stocks, bonds, or other securities, V said that it was “light already on equities” when the mid-March crash hit, so they were not impacted by the sell-off except in their mutual fund holdings. V said that their fixed income portfolio gains offset the losses from the mutual fund side, and then “were able to ride out the volatility and are now booking gains from the fixed income portfolio.”
MB: *Referring to COVID specifically, V says that it expects “assets under management to remain at these levels until there is a cure for COVID19 and we see a recovery in economic growth.” V is referring to the 6000-level of the PSE when they talk about “these levels”. Even more interestingly, V says that “with rising cases and a failure to contain the spread of the virus, there is a risk that asset prices may fall back to their lows.” V is referring to the 4500-to-5000 level when they talk about prices falling “back to their lows.” That’s something to keep an eye on. TL;DR: The market is sideways until we have a vaccine, unless virus spread continues unconstrained. Then we’ll re-test those scary lows. *
MB (1):Ok ok ok... for any of my new subscribers who were not around to read my take on V's Q1 results, you missed out on the best paragraph of MDA text that I've ever read, wherein V summarized the absolute insanity that was the social and economic context for everything that happened in Q1. It's worth a re-read so for your reading pleasure I've included it below. I just wish they'd have continued the post-apocalyptic fanfic into Q2... "The start of 2020 was not auspicious at all as first, markets were put into turmoil when Trump killed an Iranian general in a drone strike. Oil spikes 5% and USD/PHP goes from 50.60 to 51.20. Next was the Taal Volcano eruption, closing down cities as far as NCR. All of this happened in January. Also we get the first reports of a killer virus in Wuhan. This eventually spreads from China to all over the world, eventually sending the globe into lockdown. As the coronavirus spreads, US Treasury yields start falling. From around 1.8%, the 10y UST hits a low of 0.318% before eventually settling around 0.50%. The 30y UST yield hits below 1%, the first time in recorded history. Equity markets fall 3%, the worst declines since the Great Depression. The Fed has to go into crisis management and swiftly announces it will do everything to support the economy. They slash interest rates by 1%, essentially driving rates down to zero. It also promises unlimited asset purchases, with a wide scope of bonds that it can purchase, including MUNI bonds and junk bonds. Here in the Philippines NCR and Luzon is put under lockdown, with business grinding to a halt. After closing for a few days, PSE reopens and is promptly down 20% to 4000 but eventually recovers some of its losses. As liquidity becomes scarce, fixed income markets are hit hard, with banks seen liquidating their holdings. From trading at 3.125%, the benchmark 10-64 was sold to as high as 5.575 before BSP calmed markets by announcing its own bond buyback program. BSP also promptly cuts 50bp in an unscheduled meeting, and cuts RRR by 200bp. The 10-64 and bonds across the curve start being bought, with the yield down to 4.7%."
Rockwell Land [ROCK 1.55 ▲1.97%] profit ▼108% y/y… Q2/20 loss of P47m, down 108% from Q2/19 profit of P564m. Remind me if you’ve heard the one about the Manila-based real estate developer with hotel interests that had a bad time during the pandemic and lockdown. Anyway, ROCK is not particularly different from its peers in that it suffered downturns in its residential and commercial segments, but it is also worth noting that ROCK’s hotel segment was crushed by the virus and managed to turn in a P7m net loss for the quarter.
MB:The company is not in any danger, as it just concluded a P1.68bn buy-back of its seven-year bonds under a buy-back program it started 6 weeks ago. Though it’s clear that ROCK’s NCR-heavy focus, and consumption-heavy focus (hotels, cinemas, malls) hurt the company in ways that other firms which were more geographically diversified and socio-economically diversified were not.
ABS-CBN [ABS 7.25 ▼1.36%] unable to file Q1 and Q2 earnings reports on time… the ex-top broadcaster, owned by the Lopez Family and denied legislative renewal of its broadcast franchise by the… by Congress, disclosed yesterday that the non-renewal caused ABS’s auditor to request additional documents and extend the length of its audit. This, according to ABS, has put ABS in a position to miss the filing deadline for those quarters without incurring “unreasonable effort or expense”.
MB:Despite being railroaded out of domestic broadcasting and clearly still trying to administratively come to grips with the implications of that, ABS appears to be pivoting hard to digital, and… having some success? ABS just passed the 10 million subscriber mark for its YouTube channel, which is still the most-subscribed domestic news channel. No investor should expect some kind of Christmas Miracle here, though, as this is not like some 80s movie where a quick montage and some fighting spirit will replace the gaping hole in ABS’s revenues with an upstart digital presence. Revenue growth here will take time… and it comes with certain risks, such as how GMA’s Youtube channel was hacked yesterday to display “SpaceX Live” as its channel title and a scam bitcoin giveaway as its top video.
MB is posted to /PHinvest every Monday and Wednesday, but my newsletter goes out daily. To stay in the loop for daily email delivery, please join the barkada by signing up for the newsletter, or follow me on Twitter.
I am going to write a long article/rant against the Tether conspiracy. The reason is not that I have any vested interested, it’s not that I like the guys and secrecy of their project and it’s not that I don’t like transparency in general. But as with all conspiracy theories they need some sense of logic and I am here to provide this without insider knowledge. Just rational thinking as an investor.
What is Tether?
Tether is a *centralized* cryptocurrency run by the same people that run Bitfinex, one of the first and biggest exchanges. It’s ticker is USDT and you can find it in almost every cryptocurrency exchange. It has a price tied on the US Dollar but that is precisely the issue of the conspiracy theories. They claim that Tether is not actually tied to the dollar and that it’s value is used to prop up the value of Bitcoin. I will break down both arguments rationally.
Is it backed by USD?
First of all there is evidence form the long trial of NY attorney that is going on for ages. So let’s first understand something. Tether and Bitfinex is providing a worldwide service for cryptocurrency which is NOT legal tender in every country and has many rules and regulations. Therefore it’s totally unrealistic to think of it as a normal bank that needs to be super transparent to its shareholders. It provides a certain service to the cryptocurrency community that is supposed to not want to be traced. Now on the matter of if it is backed or not, this trial has revealed that it was indeed backed until a foreign government(s) froze part of their money supply in the order of 20% or so. After that they did a reverse ICO on Bitfinex and got the money supply they wanted. Now other reasons to debunk this theory if you are thinking straight:
It is absolutely impossible for all the cryptocurrency exchanges that deal with millions of volume to not know if something is wrong and expose themselves to systemic risk like that. It is like saying that JP Morgan doesn’t know if their Gold suppliers are scammers or not. Yes they do if they are the same suppliers for all the big banks. And in the end, if they are scammers, anyone reading this article is in no way to tell and now more about the truth.
Tether has had an audit (although not complete and controversial) that was done by a firm founded by US Federal Judges who would put their reputation in front if they were attesting to a scam. You can find the relevant article here.
Tether has kept its price peg. That is extremely important because in the open market if I know that Tether is unbacked that means that I should short sell it because the price will drop. But the price hasn’t dropped. When FUD was abundant the Bitfinex guys were actually buying their reserves on discount! That is incredible because they made money on people speculating on their reserves that they knew (I suppose!) that were there.
First of all I will start by saying that nobody knows when the Bitcoin market is going up, down or sideways. There are too many variables and unknowns even to the higher echelons of Bitcoin hodlers (see whales). As an example a Japanese liquidator was selling en masse Bitcoins in 2018 in the open market without anybody knowing it. Also, bubbles get created by pure mania. Nobody needed Tether to pump in 2017, you could go in taxis and the cab driver would tell you to buy altcoins! Nevertheless there are at least 2 opposing studies done by universities where one finds that it was indeed the culprit and the other one finds that price was irrelevant and no wrong doing. You can chose your medicine here. The fundamental fact that newbies scream about in the forums and it’s absolutely driving crazy is this: Tether is supposed to “print” more when exchanges ask for liquidity because of increased deposits. It is extremely tiring to read every day on reddit that “Tether prints another 4 million USD” kid of posts that assume that this is money that is non-existent. No, that’s not how it works. On the opposite side, Tether also burns tokens, something that very few know, realize and understand. So the act of adding liquidity is obviously correlated to the price because liquidity increases when big market movements are coming. That doesn’t and can’t prove of manipulation. There was this famous Bitfinexed account on Twitter that went silent. A guy that was obsessed for years and years with Bitfinex.
I am not saying that Bitfinex and Tether are legit. I am saying that as an investor I need to take a critical look at what’s going on and stop hearing cassandras. Yes maybe they are scammers and maybe they will default. If this happens it means that most or *all* of the cryptocurrency exchanges knew and nobody said a thing. That means that you know better than the NY attorney that confirmed they were in possession of at least 80% of their reserves and the other ones were confiscated. To make things simple, your local bank doesn’t have 80% reserves today if needed. I hope I am correct because Tether could take down the price of Bitcoin a lot if it fails but it won’t be a death blow for sure. The are other stablecoins that are gaining traction (see GUSD,USDC,DAI). P.S If you find value in what you are reading subscribe to the newsletter.
Alpha5 Futures Swaps: Creating Value in Crypto Derivatives
Crypto derivatives have come some way in a short period of time, albeit the infrastructure of the ecosystem is still largely haphazard and uncoordinated. Most exchanges experience a daily volume that equals or surpasses their Open Interest, highlighting some concern of trust, but more the lack of stickiness of capital. (Source: Coingecko.com, Date: 10th July 2020) And when it comes to actual trading, despite all the showboating, one product reigns king, the Perpetual Swap. In fact, roughly 2/3 of all BTC linear derivatives volume clears through this single product. (Source: Coingecko.com, Date: 10th July 2020) This is a problem. On one hand we speak of the evolving state of the market, but under the hood it appears, everyone is hugging familiarity. Without a developed futures curve, the ecosystem faces a lot of problems; speculators aren’t able to trade basis, lenders/borrowers must painstakingly hedge cash flows, convex products such as options are unable to be priced effectively, bond market development is delayed, and so on… The large part of the issue however is not that these futures don’t exist (they do), but that they lack liquidity. But why would anyone want to venture out to the 9-month future of Bitcoin? Is the premium fair? Is it rich? Or is it too low? Almost every active HFT trader will prefer the perpetual swap to a far-dated future. How is this solved? Futures Swaps (also known as “Futures Spreads”). Futures swaps simply represent the price-differential between two different points in time of the same underlying contract. For instance, assume the price of the September BTC future is 9,500, and the price of the December BTC future is 9,700. The fair market value of the Sep/Dec Futures swap is -200. How are they used?
Assume a trader has bought (is long) 10,000 September BTC futures contracts expiring on 25th September. As the expiry date draws closer the trader wishes to “roll” their position to the next futures contract, the December BTC futures contract expiring on 25th December. If they didn’t, the trader would lose their long position, and simply realize pnL with the close-out price as the price of expiration of the September Future. To execute the roll, the trader needs to close his/her position by selling (going short) 10,000 September BTC futures contracts, and at the same time buying 10,000 December BTC futures contracts. In the absence of an effective swaps contract, he will do this manually. The execution of the roll carries two major risks:
Significant price risk: In an attempt to simultaneously and continuously sell/buy 10,000 futures, prices may move significantly, and the available amount in any single execution may be greater in one contract than the other; it can get lob-sided.
Increased fees: Unless the trader is algorithmically managing to try and become a Maker in both instances, he/she is likely to pay 2x the Taker fee in an attempt to quickly ensure the trade amounts are equal in both maturities.
For Basis Trades
It is not necessary that in the above example the trader necessarily have a position in either contract to begin with; a roll may not be mandatory. In fact, it is entirely possible that a price-differential of $200 is attractive on its own for a trader to try and earn ‘roll-down’. If the December contract is worth $200 more than the September contract in today’s date, what is the reason? Is it simply futures interest? Is it distorted by some other risks? In either event, a savvy trader may look to bet on the convergence (or even further divergence), and this would be enabled by that single-click trade in the Futures Swap market.
What does this do for the ecosystem?
Futures swaps/spreads are a common product in legacy markets. At their core, their very nature drives liquidity ‘further out the curve’. When you log into a dashboard and you see a Mar 2021 BTC futures contract, it may look as if it has a lot of risk. But what if you also saw a Perpetual Swap-Mar 2021 Swap at say -400? All of a sudden that looks different; in one leg you’re effectively short Bitcoin vs. long in another. Your risk is entirely on the price-differential, and hence it’s likely to move less than just the price of Bitcoin (lower beta), encouraging you to take a view, and perhaps with greater leverage. And in doing so, you’re providing interest to a Mar 2021 BTC futures contract that may have otherwise run dry.
But these products will fall flat on their face, unless they are deployed correctly, and for that you need implied orderbooks. What this simply means is that at anytime you see a futures swap price, it is directly intertwined to the liquidity of the underlying orderbooks. Screenshot of Alpha5 interface illustrating swap prices In this example above you see a Swap Price of -516.5/-515.5. That price is actually being aggregated from two individual futures. Meaning, if you trade the swap, you trade two futures. This is key. Because what you are doing is not only providing interest in any particular maturity, but also providing liquidity. 1+1 = More. In the example in the previous section, if you traded the [Perpetual Swap — Mar 2021 Future] Swap without implied orderbooks, you simply get a ‘Mark Price’ reference at which you are marked for each individual leg of the Swap, and no individual legs need to be traded. But if that same price were implemented with implieds, you will have traded each individual leg in both orderbooks. This means the March orderbook actually was matched for a real trade against someone doing something completely different! There is beauty here because there is a non-linear building of liquidity with each additional contract. Imagine you have 3 contracts available to trade:
With implied orderbooks, you will have 3 additional contracts created (Perp-Sep, Perp-Dec, Sep-Dec), without needing any additional liquidity, for a total of 6 contracts. And the general interpolation of this would look like: https://preview.redd.it/69ckm670k1q51.png?width=1400&format=png&auto=webp&s=d3b44485bb2a9c761efcdd94c4e51e3f347f861e For every additional product that you add, you create a synergistic relationship between many more! Having Implied Orderbooks and Swap Contracts is a very powerful tool, especially in a market that is completely imbalanced with regards to where it anchors liquidity. Alpha5 is proud to be a first mover, and looks forward to helping drive liquidity for the benefit of the ecosystem. ___________________ To learn more about Alpha5 and keep up-to-date with the latest news, visit our website and sign up for our newsletter at https://alpha5.io. Follow along or contact the team with your inquiries:
I'm thinking about buying SILVER VIPER MINERALS (VIPRF). I haven't picked a price yet as I need to see it rise above the 18 day moving average line. See the chart;SMA(18);COTLC;STOSL(14,3);SRSI(14,20);MFI(14,100);SMACD(12,30,18);SMA(50)&sym=VIPRF&grid=1&height=375&studyheight=100) and see my order My last silver pick, DEFIANCE SILVER (DNCVF) which I sold a day or two ago resulted in a profit of 59.724% and held it for 27 days. I am still waiting for Bitcoin to come down to $9,000 or $8,500 as you can see on the daily and monthly charts it is trading at a top. I still think silver will come down as the charts suggest along with Bitcoin. To rationalize this to fundamental traders who are not technical traders I think the reason will be that Trump will get re-elected and will make policies or actions that will comfort those who are holding dollars but that will be a temporary thing and up again we will go in prices. See the silver daily and monthly charts. Trading is about patients and control not about how active you are. Be sure to check out my Youtube channel Twitter Trading History Newsletter archives are located at http://lists.apisbull.com/cgi-bin/dada/mail.cgi/list/activitynotices/ Main Page
Hello visitors and subscribers of scams! Here you will find a master list of common (and uncommon) scams that you may encounter online or in real life. Thank you to the many contributors who helped create this thread!
If you know of a scam that is not covered here, write a comment and it will be added to the next edition.
Caller ID spoofing It is very easy for anyone to make a phone call while having any number show up on the caller ID of the person receiving the phone call. Receiving a phone call from a certain number does not mean that the person/company who owns that number has actually called you. Email spoofing The "from" field of an email can be set by the sender, meaning that you can receive scam emails that look like they are from legitimate addresses. It's important to never click links in emails unless absolutely necessary, for example a password reset link you requested or an account activation link for an account you created. SMS spoofing SMS messages can be spoofed, so be wary of messages that seem to be from your friends or other trusted people.
The most common scams
The fake check scam (Credit to nimble2 for this part) The fake check scam arises from many different situations (for instance, you applied for a job, or you are selling something on a place like Craigslist, or someone wants to purchase goods or services from your business, or you were offered a job as a mystery shopper, you were asked to wrap your car with an advertisement, or you received a check in the mail for no reason), but the bottom line is always something like this:
The scammer sends you a very real looking, but fake, check. Sometimes they'll call it a "cashier's check", a "certified check", or a "verified check".
You deposit the check into your bank account, and within a couple of days your bank makes some or all of the funds available to you. This makes you think that the check is real and the funds have cleared. However, the money appearing in your account is not the same as the check actually clearing. The bank must make the funds available to you before they have cleared the check because that is the law.
For various and often complicated reasons, depending on the specific story line of the scam, the scammer will ask you to send someone some of the money, using services like MoneyGram, Western Union, and Walmart-2-Walmart. Sometimes the scammer will ask for you to purchase gift cards (iTunes, Amazon, Steam, etc) and give them the codes to redeem the gift cards. Some scammers may also give you instructions on how to buy and send them bitcoins.
Within a couple of weeks, though it can take as long as a month, your bank will realize that the check you deposited was fake, and your bank will remove the funds that you deposited into your account and charge you a bounced check fee. If you withdrew any of the money from the fake check, that money will be gone and you will owe that money to the bank. Some posters have even had their bank accounts closed and have been blocked from having another account for 5 years using ChexSystems.
General fraudulent funds scams If somebody is asking you to accept and send out money as a favour or as part of a job, it is a fraudulent funds scam. It does not matter how they pay you, any payment on any service can be fraudulent and will be reversed when it is discovered to be fraudulent. Phone verification code scams Someone will ask you to receive a verification text and then tell you to give them the code. Usually the code will come from Google Voice, or from Craigslist. In the Google version of the scam, your phone number will be used to verify a Google Voice account that the scammer will use to scam people with. In the Craigslist version of the scam, your phone number will be used to verify a Craigslist posting that the scammer will use to scam people. There is also an account takeover version of this scam that will involve the scammer sending a password reset token to your phone number and asking you for it. Bitcoin job scams Bitcoin job scams involve some sort of fraudulent funds transfer, usually a fake check although a fraudulent bank transfer can be used as well. The scammer will send you the fraudulent money and ask you to purchase bitcoins. This is a scam, and you will have zero recourse after you send the scammer bitcoins. Email flooding If you suddenly receive hundreds or thousands of spam emails, usually subscription confirmations, it's very likely that one of your online accounts has been taken over and is being used fraudulently. You should check any of your accounts that has a credit card linked to it, preferably from a computer other than the one you normally use. You should change all of your passwords to unique passwords and you should start using two factor authentication everywhere. Boss/CEO scam A scammer will impersonate your boss or someone who works at your company and will ask you to run an errand for them, which will usually be purchasing gift cards and sending them the code. Once the scammer has the code, you have no recourse. Employment certification scams You will receive a job offer that is dependent on you completing a course or receiving a certification from a company the scammer tells you about. The scammer operates both websites and the job does not exist. Craigslist fake payment scams Scammers will ask you about your item that you have listed for sale on a site like Craigslist, and will ask to pay you via Paypal. They are scamming you, and the payment in most cases does not actually exist, the email you received was sent by the scammers. In cases where you have received a payment, the scammer can dispute the payment or the payment may be entirely fraudulent. The scammer will then either try to get you to send money to them using the fake funds that they did not send to you, or will ask you to ship the item, usually to a re-shipping facility or a parcel mule. General fraudulent funds scams The fake check scam is not the only scam that involves accepting fraudulent/fake funds and purchasing items for scammers. If your job or opportunity involves accepting money and then using that money, it is almost certainly a frauduent funds scam. Even if the payment is through a bank transfer, Paypal, Venmo, Zelle, Interac e-Transfer, etc, it does not matter. Credit card debt scam Fraudsters will offer to pay off your bills, and will do so with fraudulent funds. Sometimes it will be your credit card bill, but it can be any bill that can be paid online. Once they pay it off, they will ask you to send them money or purchase items for them. The fraudulent transaction will be reversed in the future and you will never be able to keep the money. This scam happens on sites like Craigslist, Twitter, Instagram, and also some dating sites, including SeekingArrangement. The parcel mule scam A scammer will contact you with a job opportunity that involves accepting and reshipping packages. The packages are either stolen or fraudulently obtained items, and you will not be paid by the scammer. Here is a news article about a scam victim who fell for this scam and reshipped over 20 packages containing fraudulently acquired goods. The Skype sex scam You're on Facebook and you get a friend request from a cute girl you've never met. She wants to start sexting and trading nudes. She'll ask you to send pictures or videos or get on webcam where she can see you naked with your face in the picture. The scam: There's no girl. You've sent nudes to a guy pretending to be a girl. As soon as he has the pictures he'll demand money and threaten to send the pictures to your friends and family. Sometimes the scammer will upload the video to a porn site or Youtube to show that they are serious. What to do if you are a victim of this scam: You cannot buy silence, you can only rent it. Paying the blackmailer will show them that the information they have is valuable and they will come after you for more money. Let your friends and family know that you were scammed and tell them to ignore friend requests or messages from people they don't know. Also, make sure your privacy settings are locked down and consider deactivating your account. The underage girl scam You're on a dating site or app and you get contacted by a cute girl. She wants to start sexting and trading nudes. Eventually she stops communicating and you get a call from a pissed off guy claiming to be the girl's father, or a police officer, or a private investigator, or something else along those lines. Turns out the girl you were sexting is underage, and her parents want some money for various reasons, such as to pay for a new phone, to pay for therapy, etc. There is, of course, no girl. You were communicating with a scammer. What to do if you are a victim of this scam: Stop picking up the phone when the scammers call. Do not pay them, or they will be after you for more money. Phishing Phishing is when a scammer tries to trick you into giving information to them, such as your password or private financial information. Phishing messages will usually look very similar to official messages, and sometimes they are identical. If you are ever required to login to a different account in order to use a service, you should be incredibly cautious. The blackmail email scam The exact wording of the emails varies, but there are generally four main parts. They claim to have placed software/malware on a porn/adult video site, they claim to have a video of you masturbating or watching porn, they threaten to release the video to your friends/family/loved ones/boss/dog, and they demand that you pay them in order for them to delete the video. Rest assured that this is a very common spam campaign and there is no truth behind the email or the threats. Here are some news articles about this scam. The blackmail mail scam This is very similar to the blackmail email scam, but you will receive a letter in the mail. Rental scams Usually on local sites like Craigslist, scammers will steal photos from legitimate real estate listings and will list them for rent at or below market rate. They will generally be hesitant to tell you the address of the property for "safety reasons" and you will not be able to see the unit. They will then ask you to pay them a deposit and they claim they will ship you the keys. In reality, your money is gone and you will have no recourse. Craigslist vehicle scams A scammer will list a vehicle on Craigslist and will offer to ship you the car. In many cases they will also falsely claim to sell you the car through eBay or Amazon. If you are looking for a car on Craigslist and the seller says anything about shipping the car, having an agent, gives you a long story about why they are selling the car, or the listing price is far too low, you are talking to a scammer and you should ignore and move on. Advance-fee scam, also known as the 419 scam, or the Nigerian prince scam. You will receive a communication from someone who claims that you are entitled to a large sum of money, or you can help them obtain a large sum of money. However, they will need money from you before you receive the large sum. Man in the middle scams Man in the middle scams are very common and very hard to detect. The scammer will impersonate a company or person you are legitimately doing business with, and they will ask you to send the money to one of their own bank accounts or one controlled by a money mule. They have gained access to the legitimate persons email address, so there will be nothing suspicious about the email. To prevent this, make contact in a different way that lets you verify that the person you are talking to is the person you think you are talking to. Cam girl voting/viewer scam You will encounter a "cam girl" on a dating/messaging/social media/whatever site/app, and the scammer will ask you to go to their site and sign up with your credit card. They may offer a free show, or ask you to vote for them, or any number of other fake stories. Amateur porn recruitment scam You will encounter a "pornstar" on a dating/messaging/social media/whatever site/app, and the scammer will ask you to create an adult film with hehim, but first you need to do something. The story here is usually something to do with verifying your age, or you needing to take an STD test that involves sending money to a site operated by the scammer. Hot girl SMS spam You receive a text from a random number with a message along the lines of "Hey babe I'm here in town again if you wanted to meet up this time, are you around?" accompanied by a NSFW picture of a hot girl. It's spam, and they'll direct you to their scam website that requires a credit card. Identity verification scam You will encounter someone on a dating/messaging/social media/whatever site/app, and the scammer will ask that you verify your identity as they are worried about catfishing. The scammer operates the site, and you are not talking to whoever you think you are talking to. This type of scam teases you with something, then tries to make you sign up for something else that costs money. The company involved is often innocent, but they turn a blind eye to the practice as it helps their bottom line, even if they have to occasionally issue refunds. A common variation takes place on dating sites/dating apps, where you will match with someone who claims to be a camgirl who wants you to sign up for a site and vote for her. Another variation takes place on local sites like Craigslist, where the scammers setup fake rental scams and demand that you go through a specific service for a credit check. Once you go through with it, the scammer will stop talking to you. Another variation also takes place on local sites like Craigslist, where scammers will contact you while you are selling a car and will ask you to purchase a Carfax-like report from a specific website. Multi Level Marketing or Affiliate Marketing You apply for a vague job listing for 'sales' on craigslist. Or maybe an old friend from high school adds you on Facebook and says they have an amazing business opportunity for you. Or maybe the well dressed guy who's always interviewing people in the Starbucks that you work at asks if you really want to be slinging coffee the rest of your life. The scam: MLMs are little more than pyramid schemes. They involve buying some sort of product (usually snake oil health products like body wraps or supplements) and shilling them to your friends and family. They claim that the really money is recruiting people underneath you who give you a slice of whatever they sell. And if those people underneath you recruit more people, you get a piece of their sales. Ideally if you big enough pyramid underneath you the money will roll in without any work on your part. Failure to see any profit will be your fault for not "wanting it enough." The companies will claim that you need to buy their extra training modules or webinars to really start selling. But in reality, the vast majority of people who buy into a MLM won't see a cent. At the end of the day all you'll be doing is annoying your friends and family with your constant recruitment efforts. What to look out for: Recruiters love to be vague. They won't tell you the name of the company or what exactly the job will entail. They'll pump you up with promises of "self-generating income", "being your own boss", and "owning your own company." They might ask you to read books about success and entrepreneurs. They're hoping you buy into the dream first. If you get approached via social media, check their timelines. MLMs will often instruct their victims to pretend that they've already made it. They'll constantly post about how they're hustling and making the big bucks and linking to youtube videos about success. Again, all very vague about what their job actually entails. If you think you're being recruited: Ask them what exactly the job is. If they can't answer its probably a MLM. Just walk away.
You should generally avoid answering or engaging with random phone calls. Picking up and engaging with a scam call tells the scammers that your phone number is active, and will usually lead to more calls. Tax Call You get a call from somebody claiming to be from your countries tax agency. They say you have unpaid taxes that need to be paid immediately, and you may be arrested or have other legal action taken against you if it is not paid. This scam has caused the American IRS, Canadian CRA, British HMRC, and Australian Tax Office to issue warnings. This scam happens in a wide variety of countries all over the world. Warrant Call Very similar to the tax call. You'll get a phone call from an "agent", "officer", "sheriff", or other law enforcement officer claiming that there is a warrant out for your arrest and you will be arrested very soon. They will then offer to settle everything for a fee, usually paid in giftcards. [Legal Documents/Process Server Calls] Very similar to the warrant call. You'll get a phone call from a scammer claiming that they are going to serve you legal documents, and they will threaten you with legal consequences if you refuse to comply. They may call themselves "investigators", and will sometimes give you a fake case number. Student Loan Forgiveness Scam Scammers will call you and tell you about a student loan forgiveness program, but they are interested in obtaining private information about you or demanding money in order to join the fake program. Tech Support Call You receive a call from someone with a heavy accent claiming to be a technician Microsoft or your ISP. They inform you that your PC has a virus and your online banking and other accounts may be compromised if the virus is not removed. They'll have you type in commands and view diagnostics on your PC which shows proof of the virus. Then they'll have you install remote support software so the technician can work on your PC, remove the virus, and install security software. The cost of the labor and software can be hundreds of dollars. The scam: There's no virus. The technician isn't a technician and does not work for Microsoft or your ISP. Scammers (primarily out of India) use autodialers to cold-call everyone in the US. Any file they point out to you or command they have you run is completely benign. The software they sell you is either freeware or ineffective. What to do you if you're involved with this scam: If the scammers are remotely on your computer as you read this, turn off your PC or laptop via the power button immediately, and then if possible unplug your internet connection. Some of the more vindictive tech scammers have been known to create boot passwords on your computer if they think you've become wise to them and aren't going to pay up. Hang up on the scammers, block the number, and ignore any threats about payment. Performing a system restore on your PC is usually all that is required to remove the scammer's common remote access software. Reports of identity theft from fake tech calls are uncommon, but it would still be a good idea to change your passwords for online banking and monitor your accounts for any possible fraud. How to avoid: Ignore any calls claiming that your PC has a virus. Microsoft will never contact you. If you're unsure if a call claiming to be from your ISP is legit, hang up, and then dial the customer support number listed on a recent bill. If you have elderly relatives or family that isn't tech savvy, take the time to fill them in on this scam. Chinese government scam This scam is aimed at Chinese people living in Europe and North America, and involves a voicemail from someone claiming to be associated with the Chinese government, usually through the Chinese consulate/embassy, who is threatening legal action or making general threats. Chinese shipping scam This scam is similar to the Chinese government scam, but involves a seized/suspicious package, and the scammers will connect the victim to other scammers posing as Chinese government investigators. Social security suspension scam You will receive a call from someone claiming to work for the government regarding suspicious activity, fraud, or serious crimes connected to your social security number. You'll be asked to speak to an operator and the operator will explain the steps you need to follow in order to fix the problems. It's all a scam, and will lead to you losing money and could lead to identity theft if you give them private financial information. Utilities cutoff You get a call from someone who claims that they are from your utility company, and they claim that your utilities will be shut off unless you immediately pay. The scammer will usually ask for payment via gift cards, although they may ask for payment in other ways, such as Western Union or bitcoin. Relative in custody Scammer claims to be the police, and they have your son/daughtenephew/estranged twin in custody. You need to post bail (for some reason in iTunes gift cards or MoneyGram) immediately or the consequences will never be the same. Mexican family scam This scam comes in many different flavours, but always involves someone in your family and Mexico. Sometimes the scammer will claim that your family member has been detained, sometimes the scammer will claim that your family member has been kidnapped, and sometimes the scammer will claim that your family member is injured and needs help. General family scams Scammers will gather a large amount of information about you and target your family members using different stories with the goal of gettimg them to send money. One ring scam Scammers will call you from an international number with the goal of getting you to return their call, causing you to incur expensive calling fees.
Online shopping scams
THE GOLDEN RULE OF ONLINE SHOPPING: If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Dropshipping An ad on reddit or social media sites like Facebook and Instagram offers items at huge discounts or even free (sometimes requiring you to reblog or like their page). They just ask you to pay shipping. The scam: The item will turn out to be very low quality and will take weeks or even months to arrive. Sometimes the item never arrives, and the store disappears or stops responding. The seller drop-ships the item from China. The item may only cost a few dollars, and the Chinese government actually pays for the shipping. You end up paying $10-$15 dollars for a $4 item, with the scammer keeping the profit. If you find one of these scams but really have your heart set on the item, you can find it on AliExpress or another Chinese retailer. Influencer scams A user will reach out to you on a social media platform, usually Instagram, and offer you the chance to partner with them and receive a free/discounted product, as long as you pay shipping. This is a different version of the dropshipping scam, and is just a marketing technique to get you to buy their products. Triangulation fraud Triangulation fraud occurs when you make a purchase on a site like Amazon or eBay for an item at a lower than market price, and receive an item that was clearly purchased new at full price. The scammer uses a stolen credit card to order your item, while the money from the listing is almost all profit for the scammer. Instagram influencer scams Someone will message you on Instagram asking you to promote their products, and offering you a discount code. The items are Chinese junk, and the offer is made to many people at a time. Cheap Items Many websites pop up and offer expensive products, including electronics, clothes, watches, sunglasses, and shoes at very low prices. The scam: Some sites are selling cheap knock-offs. Some will just take your money and run. What to do if you think you're involved with this scam: Contact your bank or credit card and dispute the charge. How to avoid: The sites often have every brand-name shoe or fashion item (Air Jordan, Yeezy, Gucci, etc) in stock and often at a discounted price. The site will claim to be an outlet for a major brand or even a specific line or item. The site will have images at the bottom claiming to be Secured by Norton or various official payment processors but not actual links. The site will have poor grammar and a mish-mash of categories. Recently, established websites will get hacked or their domain name jacked and turned into scam stores, meaning the domain name of the store will be completely unrelated to the items they're selling. If the deal sounds too good to be true it probably is. Nobody is offering brand new iPhones or Beats or Nintendo Switches for 75% off. Cheap Amazon 3rd Party Items You're on Amazon or maybe just Googling for an item and you see it for an unbelievable price from a third-party seller. You know Amazon has your back so you order it. The scam: One of three things usually happen: 1) The seller marks the items as shipped and sends a fake tracking number. Amazon releases the funds to the seller, and the seller disappears. Amazon ultimately refunds your money. 2) The seller immediately cancels the order and instructs you to re-order the item directly from their website, usually with the guarantee that the order is still protected by Amazon. The seller takes your money and runs. Amazon informs you that they do not offer protection on items sold outside of Amazon and cannot help you. 2) The seller immediately cancels the order and instructs you to instead send payment via an unused Amazon gift card by sending the code on the back via email. Once the seller uses the code, the money on the card is gone and cannot be refunded. How to avoid: These scammers can be identified by looking at their Amazon storefronts. They'll be brand new sellers offering a wide range of items at unbelievable prices. Usually their Amazon names will be gibberish, or a variation on FIRSTNAME.LASTNAME. Occasionally however, established storefronts will be hacked. If the deal is too good to be true its most likely a scam. Scams on eBay There are scams on eBay targeting both buyers and sellers. As a seller, you should look out for people who privately message you regarding the order, especially if they ask you to ship to a different address or ask to negotiate via text/email/a messaging service. As a buyer you should look out for new accounts selling in-demand items, established accounts selling in-demand items that they have no previous connection to (you can check their feedback history for a general idea of what they bought/sold in the past), and lookout for people who ask you to go off eBay and use another service to complete the transaction. In many cases you will receive a fake tracking number and your money will be help up for up to a month. Scams on Amazon There are scams on Amazon targeting both buyers and sellers. As a seller, you should look out for people who message you about a listing. As a buyer you should look out for listings that have an email address for you to contact the person to complete the transaction, and you should look out for cheap listings of in-demand items. Scams on Reddit Reddit accounts are frequently purchased and sold by fraudsters who wish to use the high karma count + the age of the account to scam people on buy/sell subreddits. You need to take precautions and be safe whenever you are making a transaction online. Computer scams Virus scam A popup or other ad will say that you have a virus and you need to follow their advice in order to remove it. They are lying, and either want you to install malware or pay for their software.
Chinese Brushing / direct shipping If you have ever received an unsolicited small package from China, your address was used to brush. Vendors place fake orders for their own products and send out the orders so that they can increase their ratings. Money flipping Scammer claims to be a banking insider who can double/triple/bazoople any amount of money you send them, with no consequences of any kind. Obviously, the money disappears into their wallet the moment you send it.
Door to door scams
As a general rule, you should not engage with door to door salesmen. If you are interested in the product they are selling, check online first. Selling Magazines Someone or a group will come to your door and offer to sell a magazine subscription. Often the subscriptions are not for the duration or price you were told, and the magazines will often have tough or impossible cancellation policies. Energy sales Somebody will come to your door claiming to be from an energy company. They will ask to see your current energy bill so that they can see how much you pay. They will then offer you a discount if you sign up with them, and promise to handle everything with your old provider. Some of these scammers will "slam" you, by using your account number that they saw on your bill to switch you to their service without authorization, and some will scam you by charging higher prices than the ones you agreed on. Security system scams Scammers will come to your door and ask about your security system, and offer to sell you a new one. These scammers are either selling you overpriced low quality products, or are casing your home for a future burglary. They ask to enter your home While trying to sell you whatever, they suddenly need to use your bathroom, or they've been writing against the wall and ask to use your table instead. Or maybe they just moved into the neighborhood and want to see how you decorate for ideas. They're scoping out you and your place. They want to see what valuables you have, how gullible you are, if you have a security system or dogs, etc.
Begging With a Purpose "I just need a few more dollars for the bus," at the bus station, or "I just need $5 to get some gas," at a gas station. There's also a variation where you will be presented with a reward: "I just need money for a cab to get uptown, but I'll give you sports tickets/money/a date/a priceless vase." Three Card Monte, Also Known As The Shell Game Unbeatable. The people you see winning are in on the scam. Drop and Break You bump into someone and they drop their phone/glasses/fancy bottle of wine/priceless vase and demand you pay them back. In reality, it's a $2 pair of reading glasses/bottle of three-buck-chuck/tasteful but affordable vase. CD Sales You're handed a free CD so you can check out the artist's music. They then ask for your name and immediately write it on the CD. Once they've signed your name, they ask you for money, saying they can't give it to someone else now. Often they use dry erase markers, or cheap CD sleeves. Never use any type of storage device given to you by a random person, as the device can contain malware. White Van Speaker Scam You're approached and offered speakers/leather jackets/other luxury goods at a discount. The scammer will have an excuse as to why the price is so low. After you buy them, you'll discover that they are worthless. iPhone Street Sale You're approached and shown an iPhone for sale, coming in the box, but it's open and you can see the phone. If you buy the phone, you'll get an iPhone box with no iPhone, just some stones or cheap metal in it to weigh it down. Buddhist Monk Pendant A monk in traditional garb approaches you, hands you a gold trinket, and asks for a donation. He holds either a notebook with names and amounts of donation (usually everyone else has donated $5+), or a leaflet with generic info. This is fairly common in NYC, and these guys get aggressive quickly. Friendship Bracelet Scam More common in western Europe, you're approached by someone selling bracelets. They quickly wrap a loop of fabric around your finger and pull it tight, starting to quickly weave a bracelet. The only way to (easily) get it off your hand is to pay. Leftover sales This scam involves many different items, but the idea is usually the same: you are approached by someone who claims to have a large amount of excess inventory and offers to sell it to you at a great price. The scammer actually has low quality items and will lie to you about the price/origin of the items. Dent repair scams Scammers will approach you in public about a dent in your car and offer to fix it for a low price. Often they will claim that they are mechanics. They will not fix the dent in your car, but they will apply large amounts of wax or other substances to hide the dent while they claim that the substance requires time to harden. Gold ring/jewelry/valuable item scam A scammer will "find" a gold ring or other valuable item and offers to sell it to you. The item is fake and you will never see the scammer again. Distraction theft One person will approach you and distract you, while their accomplice picks your pockets. The distraction can take many forms, but if you are a tourist and are approached in public, watch closely for people getting close to you.
dxDAO aims to power DeFi protocols through decentralized governance
I found this article on internet. It's repost of it to help educate people about all DXDao advantages: These are positive and necessary steps for DeFi. The new governance structures are intended to help coordinate across community stakeholders and make better decisions. These dynamics are influenced by the issues covered in Dose of DeFi, but I believe they deserve their own focused analysis. Govern Thisaims to educate token holders and make them better voters. Emphasis will be placed on specific governance proposals and relaying community governance discussions on forums and weekly calls. Governance is a coordination technology that has helped countries and companies build more than the sum of their parts. Blockchains are also a coordination technology, but for computers, not humans***.*** Govern Thiswill track the development of the melding of these two over the coming years. Like governance,Govern Thisis a work in progress. I would appreciate any feedback on format, topics covered or any other suggestions to make the newsletter better. Just hit reply. The first issue ofGovern Thisis below. Pleaseclick here to subscribe. Thanks for reading, Chris 📷 dxDAO aims to power DeFi protocols through decentralized governance Gnosis launched a long-awaited DEX last week with batched auctions for low-liquidity trade pairs. The front-end, Mesa.Eth.Link is owned and operated by dxDAO, a decentralized collective that hopes to power other DeFi protocols. While dYdX does not have any specific governance plans (yet), this tweet from dYdX founder Antonio Juliano is a common approach to governance. 📷Antonio Juliano @AntonioMJuliano3) 0x should focus less on governance in the short term. It’s way more important to first build something with a large amount of adoption that’s worth governing December 6th 2018 3 Retweets62 Likes The tweet at the end of 2018 was in response to 0x and its native token, ZRX. The project was popular but the token had no use case outside of governance. This governance strategy – build now, decentralize later – is widely accepted in the space and is perhaps best exemplified by the A16Z’s Jesse Walden’s post, “Progressive Decentralization: A Playbook for Building Crypto Applications”, which the A16Z-backed Compound has essentially implemented (more in the section below). dxDAO, on the other hand, maintains that decentralization must come at the beginning or else the core team and investors will have an outsized influence on the project in formal (token voting) or informal ways (dictators for life). Background dxDAO was launched in May 2019, spun out of a collaboration between Gnosis and DAOstack over managing the DutchX platform. dxDAO’s key governance design is separating financial rights to the DAO (DXD) from voting power over the DAO (Reputation). It used an Edgeware-style lock drop to distribute reputation to stakeholders in May of last year. Any user could lock up ETH or an accepted ERC-20 for a month and receive Reputation, which are voting rights in dxDAO, even though it is not a token and cannot be transferred. Over 400 unique Ethereum addresses participated in the distribution scheme. Gnosis went through a pretty extensive process in July 2019 to “step back” from its involvement in the DAO, and since then, the community and dxDAO have aligned behind a mission of “putting the ‘De’ in Decentralized Finance”. Following on last week’s launch of Mesa.ETH.Link, dxDAO is conducting a fundraiser or (“DAICO”?) to help fund its new slate of DeFi products, including a prediction market platform (Omen) and a privacy-centric DeFi dashboard (Mix). Project launch is typically when a project is most centralized. Execution is hard and direction and accountability are important. dxDAO’s approach will be an interesting counterexample to the “decentralize later” trend and may provide insight into new governance strategies. Click here for more information about the dxDAO fundraiser. Here’s what is on the dxDAO docket this week:
There are no explicit plans yet, but the widely held assumption is that the COMP distribution will be determined by the interest earned and paid by users on the protocol since its inception. This is a clever way that only incentivizes more use of the protocol and is hard to game because interests accrues over time. But the question still remains, what will the COMP community look like and what values will it espouse? Can emergent cultures arise out of Silicon Valley too? Here’s what is on the Compound docket this week:
Governance AMA with Compound CEO Robert Leshner - Robert answered a variety of questions on ETH2.0 (staking yield is of great interest), Chainlink (Compound’s oracle system is better), contentious forks (Compound would signal a preference on chain) and how Covid-19 changed his mind about remote work. They also announced…
Proposal: Add USDT Support – announced on the AMA, USDT was approved by Compound users in a poll last September but had yet to be included. The proposal to add the largest stablecoin in the world is the first test for the new governance portal. (Very) notably, the proposal does not allow USDT to be used as collateral, as Compound currently does with wBTC. It’s not clear if Compound wants to be in the largest stablecoin market or not and underscores the governance challenges of straddling both worlds.
Head of Community Rich started off with a new meme for governance: the path from intent to implementation, discussing how forums, polls and other initiatives are designed to capture the intent of the community, and then “empowered people” are tasked with implementing that, foreshadowing upcoming changes.
Half of the call was devoted to the addition of WBTC as collateral with representatives from WBTC, Bitgo and CoinList in attendance. CoinList’s WBTC announcement gives WBTC the type of liquidity needed for Maker’s auctions (“can redeem WBTC in less than 2 minutes and burn less than that”). Most of the discussion revolved around the circular loop from BTC->DAI in times of high volatility. While there was some concern that WBTC liquidity was dependent on acceptance as Maker collateral, most on the call seemed to support the addition. The strongest support seemed to come from the Maker Foundation’s market making team, who is reportedly the largest market maker for WBTC. There’s more in the Maker forum thread.
State of the peg – Vishesh’s overview (graphs can be seen here) showed that the peg had come down to $1.01x area but most of the discussion was around the debt ceiling. At the time of the call it was 4 million away from its 90m debt ceiling. Vishesh advocated for a more programmatic lifting of the debt ceiling. Update: Dai hit the 90m debt ceiling Friday evening ET. Should help the peg.
Single Collateral Dai shutdown – the process has begun. A poll passed with May 12 as the official SCD shutdown. Just yesterday, an executive just passed yesterday to make the MKR oracle fee-less, which will help with migration. Many in the community think the migration of debt from SCD will do more than enough to restore the peg. 13 MIPs and 2 sub proposals – Core to the new Maker governance process is the “Maker Improvement Proposals (MIPs), which are modeled off of BIPs (for Bitcoin) and EIPs (for Ethereum). The two sub-proposals are to appoint the Smart Contracts Team and assign Charles St. Louis as the MIP editor. The 13 MIPs are listed below:
By and large, the MIPs codify many of the informal Maker governance processes. There is currently a request for comments period (MIP forum) and there will be an informal poll on Monday, April 27 on whether to proceed with the 13 MIPs and 2 sub proposals. If it’s a “Yes”, than an executive for an official ratification vote would start on May 1 and lasts for 4 days. If it passes, the official governance cycle will begin and the rest of the MIPs will likely be approved from May 4 – 6. Other Governing Things
Synthetix trials incentivzation program to encourage ETH shorts to balance debt position Link
PieDAO community call on audit and post imBTC actions Link
Coinbase Custody double downs on DeFi governance Link
Terra considers punishing validators that don’t vote Link
0x governance proposal to decrease epoch length to 7 days Link
That’s it! Feedback definitely appreciated. Just hit reply. Written in Brooklyn where it rained all day. No euchre today, but yesterday was epic. Govern This is written byChris Powers. Opinions expressed are my own. All content is for informational purposes and is not intended as investment advice.
We’re seeing a bunch of interesting Rust blockchain and crypto projects, so this month the “Interesting Things” section is loaded up with news, papers, and project links. This month, Elrond, appeared on our radar with the launch of their mainnet. Although not written in Rust, it runs Rust smart contracts on its Arwen WASM VM, which itself is based on the Rust Wasmer VM. Along with NEAR, Nervos, and Enigma (and probably others), this continues an encouraging trend of blockchains enabling smart contracts in Rust. See the “Interesting Things” section for examples of Elrond’s Rust contracts. Rust continues to be popular for research into zero-knowledge proofs, with Microsoft releasing Spartan, a zk-SNARK system without trusted setup. In RiB news, we published a late one-year anniversary blog post. It has some reflection on the changes to, and growth of, RiB over the last year. The Awesome Blockchain Rust project, which is maintained by Sun under the rust-in-blockchain GitHub org, has received a stream of updates recently, and is now published as the Awesome-RiB page on rustinblockchain.org. It’s a pretty good resource for finding blockchain-related Rust projects, with links to many of the more prominent and mature projects noted in the RiB newsletter. It could use more eyes on it though.
What’s It Good For?. Lane’s take on the blockchain tech: “blockchain is very good at a narrow set of applications and pretty bad at just about everything else. When you get past the hype, it’s really just a slow, expensive, distributed, permissionless, append-only ledger, nothing more and nothing less.”
rust-fil-proofs. The Filecoin Proving Subsystem (or FPS) provides the storage proofs required by the Filecoin protocol. It is implemented entirely in Rust, as a series of partially inter-dependent crates – some of which export C bindings to the supported API.
Shuffler uses StarkWare’s VeeDo VDF to seed a seedable RNG, and shuffle a randomisable list of items.
6 Products To Earn Free Bitcoin With A Whoosh - By Lightning Network
How to earn free Bitcoin as normal users, when mining is too demanding? Actually, there’re simple ways to earn Bitcoin little by little. With these 6 products below, you’ll find it’s just a piece of cake to earn Bitcoin. Even though it might only be a few Satoshis each time, many a little makes a mickle. Besides, all the products mentioned in this article are powered by Lightning Network with an instant payment feature, which means you don't need to wait in line for your payment to proceed. *Lightning Network adds another layer to Bitcoin’s blockchain and enables users to create payment channels between any two parties on that extra layer. These channels can exist for as long as required, and because they’re set up between two people, transactions will be almost instant and the fees will be extremely low or even non-existent.
Get Bitcoin Tips from Social Media
Tippin Want to show your crypto love to a brilliant tweet? Or do you feel your own tweets deserve more than likes? With Tippin, you can tip the tweets you love with Bitcoin, as well as get tips from others. Simply add the browser extension, then you are all set to send and receive Bitcoin tips on Twitter. The browser extension adds a lightning icon on every tweet, so you can reward or get a reward with it. Sats4Likes It’s super easy for Twitter addicts to earn Bitcoin with Sats4Likes! Complete tasks such as Twitter likes and RTs, follow Twitter accounts, and you can claim tasks for Satoshis. There’re also tasks on Google, YouTube, or other channels.
Get Answer Get Answer is much like Quora, but with Satoshi rewards. You can earn by providing the best answer to a question. The rewards of a question are set by whoever asks that question. Y’alls Y’alls is a pay-to-read forum based on Lightning Network. Here you can write articles and get Bitcoin rewards from your readers! Besides the reading fees, you might also receive “Reaction” emojis for your articles, which will also bring you rewards. What a fun way for readers to show their attitudes!
Small Tasks, Easy Earn: Microlancer Pick up some micro-freelancing tasks in Microlancer, complete it, and earn a bit Bitcoin! The tasks range from “say hello”, “sign up”, “subscribe” to “set up Bitcoin nodes”, so there’s something for everyone to complete and earn! It builds a gig economy for freelancers based on blockchain. Bitcoin Crowdfunding: Tallycoin The Tallycoin platform makes it easy to contribute to community projects or start your own fundraising in Bitcoin payment! It requires 0 fees, so every satoshi donated to you belongs to you. It’s even more convenient if you plug in the Tallypay on your own website. It allows you to accept donations from your website by just copying and pasting 2 lines of code. One Satoshi a time, step by step, one day you might build Rome! Search "Lightning Network" on dapp.com, you will see the bitcoin products there. Read full article 👉 https://www.dapp.com/article/6-products-earn-you-free-bitcoin Don't forget to subscribe to our newsletter, we'll introduce more interesting products.
THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN PALM BEACH CONFIDENTIAL and CRYPTO INCOME QUARTERLY (aka: tech royalties)
the TL;DR is that if you want to share either of these publication / services with me and a few others contact me at [[email protected]](mailto:[email protected]) REVIEW OF BOTH PALM BEACH CRYPTO PUBLICATIONS: This will be a brief overview of the difference between the two Palm Beach Group Cryptocurrency Publications. The first publication is called the Palm Beach Confidential. This is the original crypto newsletter dating back to the beginning of 2016. During that year Teeka Tiwari made incredible calls on buying ETH at $9 and later Ant Shares (now NEO) at just 13 cents. Both went up to $1,400 and $250 respectively. Lives were changed almost overnight with these incredible gains if you just piggybacked his advice. So why another crypto publication called the Crypto Income Quarterly? Isn’t the Palm Beach Confidential enough for such a niche market as cryptocurrency investment? I don’t think it is. Let me explain the two publications in some detail so that you can decide what is best for you. THE PALM BEACH CONFIDENTIAL: The Confidential is more for the investor that wants to buy and hold projects with the expectation that they will increase in value over time. Think similar to buying Amazon stock many years ago. Except with crypto sometimes buying a certain threshold of tokens or coins actually give you access to services and privileges. This is how crypto investments differ greatly from traditional investments. You have some coins which are aiming to be only a better MONEY (imo probably the most important use case). Think Bitcoin BTC here or Monero. It tries to do one thing and do it well. Other tokens unlock access to investment information and signals, or access to lower rates on loans, or give you cash back for using their crypto credit card. These are only a few of the more simple examples of the capabilities of tokens/coins through something called; smart contracts. There really is no limit to what tokens/coins combined with smart contracts can do. As you can imagine this makes investing in these projects all the more difficult to assess because of all the moving parts and various a capabilities and privileges unlocked by each coin (or aka: token). By the way; “coins” usually do one thing (again think Monero / Bitcoin as money) where as “tokens” usually sit on top a smart contract platform like Ethereum and give more leeway to get creative with - tokens are also not usually trying to emulate money, although it’s possible that these too could be seen as a type of currency. Confused yet? lol. Stay with me here! If you were to go to coinmarketcap.com you will see a listing of currently over 2,000 coins and tokens or: projects. Now how can you possibly sift through this information alone and assess the quality of the projects or the teams involved. How much time and study and research would it take you to even have a shot at picking winners in this complex space? This is where the Palm Beach publications come in. The Palm Beach Confidential is more hands on and a bit of hand holding - and imo better for novice crypto investors. Note I didn’t say novice investors - I said novice crypto investors. I would never say it’s a publication for crypto noobs, but it is more newbie friendly. Most of the coins are pure investments. You buy / you hold / you sell sometime in the future or you ride it to incredible gains and beyond. Each of these coins or tokens is usually trying to solve a complex problem. The Confidential include the monthly flagship newsletter which usually has at least one new coin pick backed with incredible work and research analyzing all aspects of the project, the need and future demand for the token, the problem it solves, the team involved and the partnerships they have lined up or pending. It’s a treasure trove of fundamental information that any aspiring venture capitalist should have. They also provide buy/sell alerts on short term ideas (not too many of these unless in full bull run) and tell you when to cash out some of your profits when certain profit objectives are reached. Teeka calls this ‘skimming some cream from the top’. As a trader I use the Confidential to help me make buy and sell decisions. But I still wouldn’t label it as trading services - it’s more geared towards investors. In 2019 and 2020 Teeka has been absolutely killing it with his picks. He came out with the first 5 coins to 5 million report and then recently the final 5 coins to 5 million and now also added; The 2020 Phenomenon playbook. The coins in these reports are crushing it with gains of 800% and 1200% - the numbers just don’t lie. Teeka gets some flack online for being an over the top salesman - and I have to agree he’s sometimes over the top. But let’s face it, so are these gains. So from a subscriber’s perspective, the only people hating on Teeka are the ones without these reports and the gains they deliver. This much I can assure you! CRYPTO INCOME QUARTERLY: aka: TECH ROYALTIES The Crypto Income Quarterly is the newest Palm Beach crypto publication which started in the beginning of 2019. The reason it exists is because crypto is so complex and certain tokens and coins not only grant special access to services and discounts etc, but they provide income! That’s right many coins now are paying 9% - 40% dividends (or as Teeka calls them “tech royalties”) on simply putting the coin in a wallet and holding them. This process of locking up your tokens for a certain period of time is called “staking”. In a world of negative interest rates there is no incentive to save. But in the more honest and transparent, non inflationary world of cryptocurrency there is ample opportunity to create coins that literally enable rich income streams to flow unto the holders. As you can imagine these projects enable us as investors to achieve the holy grail of investing: passive income. But not only is it hard to find the best staking coins in a sea of cryptocurrencies it’s also hard to make sure all your ducks are in a row and that you are staking correctly in order to earn your staking rewards aka; dividends. Palm Beach lays this all out for you in easy to follow step by step instructions so that even a child could do it. You will have simple step by step guides to walk you quickly through the process so that you can start earning immediately. Furthermore it’s been said that staking is really the future as it does not require even a fraction of the electricity to mine and secure like POW (proof of work) coins like Bitcoin does. So staking coins are likely to become more and more popular over time. The Crypto Income Quarterly will make sure that you don’t miss a beat in this rapidly expanding niche of crypto investing. Soon it will not be a niche at all but quite possibly the dominant protocol for all of crypto. ETH for example is even moving from POW to POS (proof of stake). So this should tell you something. WRAPPING UP The combination of both these crypto reports ensure that you will not miss the “Amazon” or “Netflix” of crypto whether they be the latest POS dividend coin - or whether is be a new coin running on a new and revolutionary protocol. As great as the FANG companies are - they are absolutely boring in comparison to what some crypto projects are striving to achieve. Crypto is a lot more than just about magic internet money - it’s about new solutions in a new world powered by blockchain and enabled by something that never existed prior to this era: smart contracts. Investing in crypto can be extremely overwhelming, but Palm Beach Group really breaks down crypto into easy to understand and digest ways while giving you the exact step by step directions you will need to not screw things up and lose your money. I suggest unless you have many years in crypto, that you not try to go this alone. You will likely be parted with your money or make a fatal mistake. There are countless stories out there! Don’t be a casualty. If you have some experience in crypto but have made a lot of bad calls trying to follow the latest trends on twitter or reddit, well then you are probably getting what you paid for and buying someone else’s bags. Everyone pumping coins online has an agenda - remember that, so be careful! If you have the money to purchase the Palm Beach Confidential and/or Crypto income quarterly I think it’s money well spent. But the publications are priced at out of reach prices. Which is why I’m offering to share my lifetime subscription along with my personal friendship and expertise in the space should you need it. As a successful crypto investor even before palm beach I can provide you with yet another perspective on a complex market. Because while Teeka is a good guy I can assure you he won’t be there for you. He has far too many subscribers. And while Palm Beach means well- their customer service agents will NOT help you out in crypto. In fact I have personal experience that shows they are mainly about up selling subscriptions and little more. This is simply the truth. If you expect to pick up the phone and talk to a crypto expert at Palm Beach like Teeka or myself when you are in a pickle - good luck. These lower level employees don’t know anything about crypto and are simply script readers / followers and if you are in a tight spot you’re going to be on your own. So, that’s all I have for you today. I hope I was helpful in helping you understand the difference between the two Palm Beach Group crypto publications and services. Hopefully you can use this as a guide to help you make the right decision on which publication is good for you. But be sure to hit me up if you’d like to discuss a package SHARE deal that will give you ME and both publications. After all, isn’t this “the share economy”? If interested only DIRECT MESSAGES to me here (or at [[email protected]](mailto:[email protected])) will be answered. Thank you.
Hi All, A few years ago - once I first learned about Bitcoin actually - I started wondering to myself 'what really IS money?'. Researching that question has taken me down a fascinating rabbit hole. I have since spent the last three years researching money, the history of money, and different monetary systems. It turns out that how a system of money is designed affects our lives in more ways than we realize (although many Bitcoiner's realize it..). Questioning Money is an audio newsletter created to explore this. Issues will be short (~5 mins each) and focused, covering one issue a week. Apologies for the self promo but I think what this newsletter will cover would appeal to the people here. First two issues are up now. QM001 is an intro do why I am doing this newsletter and QM002 gets started talking about what money is and how it works. QM001 is 4.5 minutes long and QM002 is 6.5 mins. Questioning Money |Episode 001 - Introduction / Episode 002 - How Money Works https://questioningmoney.substack.com/welcome https://twitter.com/seancover
Megathread: Mueller indicts 12 Russians for hacking into DNC
Special counsel Robert Mueller indicted 12 Russians on Friday, and accused them of hacking into the Democratic National Committee to sabotage the 2016 presidential election. The indictments, announced by Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, come just days before a scheduled Monday summit in Helsinki between Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin. A copy of the indictment can be found on the DOJ website here: https://www.justice.gov/file/1080281/download
It was another month in 2020, like previous months in 2020. Stuck inside, hacking away. We don’t see a consistent blockchain Rust theme to highlight this month, but interesting new Rust crypto and blockchain projects continue to be launched. They are noted in the “Interesting Things” section. Oasis launched what will probably become their mainnet. Congrats to them! Ethereum 2 keeps creeping closer, and it looks like Lighthouse, in Rust, might be the fastest implementation. The Holochain team asked that we highlight the Holochain DevCamp, running until August 27th. Now is your opportunity to learn more about the project. There are a number of other online blockchain hackathons going on this summer, noted in our “Events” section. Could be a good way to spend time this summer instead of going to the beach. Well, anyway, keep on hacking.
This edition of RiB was produced with contributions from Darosior, James Waugh, Ken Shamir, Paulii Good, Taylor Lee, Brian Anderson, and Aimee Zhu. Thank you for your help! RiB needs help to keep up with Rust blockchain projects. If you follow a particular project, or otherwise find information that is beneficial to the Rust & blockchain community, please contribute to the next issue. Either submit a PR to the #14 draft, or Tweet @rust_blockchain.
Each month we like to shine a light on a notable Rust blockchain project. This month that project is… electrs. electrs is a server for the Electrum Bitcoin wallet, written in Rust. Electrum is a light wallet that needs to connect to a server to transact with the Bitcoin network. Although there are public Electrum servers, and they are safe to transact with, they can deanonymize users, so it might be prudent to run one’s own Electrum server, like electrs , or bwt (also written in Rust). As mentioned recently in a blog post, Blockstream, one of the primary Bitcoin developers, uses electrs in its block explorer, esplora, which is live at blockstream.info.
What the upcoming years might hold in store for bitcoin (a technical outlook by John Newbery)
John Newbery is a developer contributing to Bitcoin Core and to various educational resources like Bitcoin Optech. Original source is here:https://twitter.com/jfnewbery/status/1208559196465184768. Keep in mind that the text below is copied from Twitter, so the formatting/phrasing might seem a little strange. -------------------------------------------------------- The end of the decade is a good time to look back and marvel at the giant strides that Bitcoin has made since Satoshi gave us the whitepaper in 2008. It's also a natural point to look forward to what the upcoming years might hold in store. This is where I think Bitcoin is headed over the next few years. Tell me why I'm wrong and what I've missed! The lightning protocol teams working on c-lightning (@Blockstream), eclair (@acinq_co), LND (@lightning) and rust lightning will continue to iterate rapidly on the lightning protocol. All implementations now support basic multi-path payments (https://bitcoinops.org/en/topics/multipath-payments/). We'll get better support of that as well as dual-funding, splice-in and splice-out (https://bitcoinops.org/en/topics/splicing/). Taken together, those technologies will make channel and liquidity management much easier. They'll be automated, fade into the background and user experience will improve drastically. Lightning infrastructure will improve. @bitfinex recently added lightning deposits and withdrawals. All other exchanges, merchant service providers, custodians and wallets will follow suit or become obsolete. We'll see more lightning wallets: a mix of non-custodial; self-custodied with outsourced routing; and fully-self-managed wallets. This is a brand new space and there'll be lots of experimentation. Different teams will find different niches to fill. Already, wallets like @MuunWallet, @Breez_Tech, @PhoenixWallet, @ln_zapand @bluewalletio are experimenting with different models. Tooling for lightning developers will improve. When we ran the lightning apps residency just over a year ago, the attendees spent a lot of time setting up their lightning dev environments. Now, with Polar (https://github.com/jamaljspolar) by @jamaljsr, lightning app developers can set up a test environment with a few clicks. More and better tools will continue to appear. With better tooling, we'll see faster innovation on the application layer. Teams at @zebedeeio, @SatoshisGames, and others we haven't heard of yet will delight us with new and unexpected lightning experiences. The schnortaproot softfork (https://bitcoinops.org/en/topics/taproot/) will be activated in 2020 or 2021. That'll provide a huge improvement in fungibility, privacy, scalability and functionality. For an overview of the benefits, watch the Optech exec briefing here: https://bitcoinops.org/en/2019-exec-briefing/#the-next-softfork That'll allow lightning to upgrade from HTLCs to Payment Points. That's a big improvement for privacy and payment decorrelation, and allows 'Stuckless payments' with proofs-of-payment -- another huge boost in LN usablity. See the @suredbits series of blog posts here https://suredbits.com/payment-points-part-1/ for more details on Payment Points. Even better, lightning channel opens and closes will look identical to payments to single pubkeys. The same is true for payments to k-of-n pubkey thresholds. That's good for fungibility, privacy and scalability. In fact, with schnortaproot, there's almost no downside to encumbering UTXOs with advanced scripts instead of single pubkey outputs. Cold storage UTXOs will be k-of-n multisig keytrees, and all hot wallet UTXOs will be stored in channels (with splicing-out used to make on-chain payments). When transactions hit the chain, they'll look like any other single pubkey/signature payment. Payments into wallets will pay directly into channel open outputs (thanks to @esneider for pointing this out to me). There'll be no concept of an on-chain balance and an in-channel balance. Just a single, unified balance that can be used for lightning or on-chain payments. Wallet teams will collaborate on a PayJoin payment protocol (https://bitcoinops.org/en/topics/payjoin/). A large number of on-chain transactions will be 2-input-2-ouput transactions, vastly improving fungibility and privacy, and foiling chain analysis. The inputs to those PayJoin transactions may be channel splice-outs, and the outputs may be channel opens, but there'll be no way to tell from observing the chain. Eventually we'll have cross-input signature aggregation (https://bitcoincore.org/en/2017/03/23/schnorr-signature-aggregation/#signature-aggregation), which means those PayJoin transactions will only have a single signature, and will be *cheaper* than regular change-producing transactions. Larger coinjoins will be cheaper still. An advanced PayJoin payment protocol could even batch multiple payments to the same merchant/exchange and use only a single signature. We'll get SIGHASH_NOINPUT or SIGHASH_ANYPREVOUT (https://bitcoinops.org/en/topics/sighash_noinput/), making eltoo (https://bitcoinops.org/en/topics/eltoo/) possible, and blurring the lines between layer 1 and layer 2 (https://lists.linuxfoundation.org/pipermail/lightning-dev/2019-Septembe002136.html). That'll make lightning even more usable and allow more advanced layer 2 contracts like channel factories (https://bitcoinops.org/en/topics/channel-factories/). All these advanced features will require greater wallet interoperability. That's where miniscript (https://bitcoinops.org/en/topics/miniscript/) comes in. With miniscript, wallets will eventually be able to enter contracts with each other that don't require pre-templated scripts (as lightning currently does). This wallet interoperability will allow faster innovation in layer 2 contracts. OP_CTV (https://bitcoinops.org/en/newsletters/2019/12/04/#op-checktemplateverify-ctv) or some other covenant-enabling opcode will be activated, allowing richer layer 2 constructions like joinpools (https://freenode.irclog.whitequark.org/bitcoin-wizards/2019-05-21#1558427254-1558427441). Taken together with taproot and SIGHASH_NOINPUT, we'll get extremely rich and private off-chain contracts will be made possible. Some of these things will happen in 2020, and some will take a bit longer, but they're all heading in the same direction: using the chain for what the chain's good for (h/t Andrew Poelstra). That's to say: the block chain allows nodes to arrive at an agreed ledger state, while contracting and functionality move up onto layer two. Doing so is cheaper, more secure, more private and allows for more rapid innovation. None of this is inevitable, and none can happen without the industry of many hands and the creativity of many minds. There are years of work ahead for developers, researchers, businesses and users. If you run a Bitcoin business, you can help by supporting, sponsoring or hiring open source developers. If you're a Bitcoin user, you can help by *demanding* that any service you use supports the open source ecosystem. If you're a developer, you can help by reviewing and testing PRs and releases. https://bitcoincore.reviews/ is a great place to start. 2020 is going to be a great year for Bitcoin and Lightning protocol development! /fin
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