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Why i’m bullish on Zilliqa (long read)

Edit: TL;DR added in the comments
 
Hey all, I've been researching coins since 2017 and have gone through 100s of them in the last 3 years. I got introduced to blockchain via Bitcoin of course, analyzed Ethereum thereafter and from that moment I have a keen interest in smart contact platforms. I’m passionate about Ethereum but I find Zilliqa to have a better risk-reward ratio. Especially because Zilliqa has found an elegant balance between being secure, decentralized and scalable in my opinion.
 
Below I post my analysis of why from all the coins I went through I’m most bullish on Zilliqa (yes I went through Tezos, EOS, NEO, VeChain, Harmony, Algorand, Cardano etc.). Note that this is not investment advice and although it's a thorough analysis there is obviously some bias involved. Looking forward to what you all think!
 
Fun fact: the name Zilliqa is a play on ‘silica’ silicon dioxide which means “Silicon for the high-throughput consensus computer.”
 
This post is divided into (i) Technology, (ii) Business & Partnerships, and (iii) Marketing & Community. I’ve tried to make the technology part readable for a broad audience. If you’ve ever tried understanding the inner workings of Bitcoin and Ethereum you should be able to grasp most parts. Otherwise, just skim through and once you are zoning out head to the next part.
 
Technology and some more:
 
Introduction
 
The technology is one of the main reasons why I’m so bullish on Zilliqa. First thing you see on their website is: “Zilliqa is a high-performance, high-security blockchain platform for enterprises and next-generation applications.” These are some bold statements.
 
Before we deep dive into the technology let’s take a step back in time first as they have quite the history. The initial research paper from which Zilliqa originated dates back to August 2016: Elastico: A Secure Sharding Protocol For Open Blockchains where Loi Luu (Kyber Network) is one of the co-authors. Other ideas that led to the development of what Zilliqa has become today are: Bitcoin-NG, collective signing CoSi, ByzCoin and Omniledger.
 
The technical white paper was made public in August 2017 and since then they have achieved everything stated in the white paper and also created their own open source intermediate level smart contract language called Scilla (functional programming language similar to OCaml) too.
 
Mainnet is live since the end of January 2019 with daily transaction rates growing continuously. About a week ago mainnet reached 5 million transactions, 500.000+ addresses in total along with 2400 nodes keeping the network decentralized and secure. Circulating supply is nearing 11 billion and currently only mining rewards are left. The maximum supply is 21 billion with annual inflation being 7.13% currently and will only decrease with time.
 
Zilliqa realized early on that the usage of public cryptocurrencies and smart contracts were increasing but decentralized, secure, and scalable alternatives were lacking in the crypto space. They proposed to apply sharding onto a public smart contract blockchain where the transaction rate increases almost linear with the increase in the amount of nodes. More nodes = higher transaction throughput and increased decentralization. Sharding comes in many forms and Zilliqa uses network-, transaction- and computational sharding. Network sharding opens up the possibility of using transaction- and computational sharding on top. Zilliqa does not use state sharding for now. We’ll come back to this later.
 
Before we continue dissecting how Zilliqa achieves such from a technological standpoint it’s good to keep in mind that a blockchain being decentralised and secure and scalable is still one of the main hurdles in allowing widespread usage of decentralised networks. In my opinion this needs to be solved first before blockchains can get to the point where they can create and add large scale value. So I invite you to read the next section to grasp the underlying fundamentals. Because after all these premises need to be true otherwise there isn’t a fundamental case to be bullish on Zilliqa, right?
 
Down the rabbit hole
 
How have they achieved this? Let’s define the basics first: key players on Zilliqa are the users and the miners. A user is anybody who uses the blockchain to transfer funds or run smart contracts. Miners are the (shard) nodes in the network who run the consensus protocol and get rewarded for their service in Zillings (ZIL). The mining network is divided into several smaller networks called shards, which is also referred to as ‘network sharding’. Miners subsequently are randomly assigned to a shard by another set of miners called DS (Directory Service) nodes. The regular shards process transactions and the outputs of these shards are eventually combined by the DS shard as they reach consensus on the final state. More on how these DS shards reach consensus (via pBFT) will be explained later on.
 
The Zilliqa network produces two types of blocks: DS blocks and Tx blocks. One DS Block consists of 100 Tx Blocks. And as previously mentioned there are two types of nodes concerned with reaching consensus: shard nodes and DS nodes. Becoming a shard node or DS node is being defined by the result of a PoW cycle (Ethash) at the beginning of the DS Block. All candidate mining nodes compete with each other and run the PoW (Proof-of-Work) cycle for 60 seconds and the submissions achieving the highest difficulty will be allowed on the network. And to put it in perspective: the average difficulty for one DS node is ~ 2 Th/s equaling 2.000.000 Mh/s or 55 thousand+ GeForce GTX 1070 / 8 GB GPUs at 35.4 Mh/s. Each DS Block 10 new DS nodes are allowed. And a shard node needs to provide around 8.53 GH/s currently (around 240 GTX 1070s). Dual mining ETH/ETC and ZIL is possible and can be done via mining software such as Phoenix and Claymore. There are pools and if you have large amounts of hashing power (Ethash) available you could mine solo.
 
The PoW cycle of 60 seconds is a peak performance and acts as an entry ticket to the network. The entry ticket is called a sybil resistance mechanism and makes it incredibly hard for adversaries to spawn lots of identities and manipulate the network with these identities. And after every 100 Tx Blocks which corresponds to roughly 1,5 hour this PoW process repeats. In between these 1,5 hour, no PoW needs to be done meaning Zilliqa’s energy consumption to keep the network secure is low. For more detailed information on how mining works click here.
Okay, hats off to you. You have made it this far. Before we go any deeper down the rabbit hole we first must understand why Zilliqa goes through all of the above technicalities and understand a bit more what a blockchain on a more fundamental level is. Because the core of Zilliqa’s consensus protocol relies on the usage of pBFT (practical Byzantine Fault Tolerance) we need to know more about state machines and their function. Navigate to Viewblock, a Zilliqa block explorer, and just come back to this article. We will use this site to navigate through a few concepts.
 
We have established that Zilliqa is a public and distributed blockchain. Meaning that everyone with an internet connection can send ZILs, trigger smart contracts, etc. and there is no central authority who fully controls the network. Zilliqa and other public and distributed blockchains (like Bitcoin and Ethereum) can also be defined as state machines.
 
Taking the liberty of paraphrasing examples and definitions given by Samuel Brooks’ medium article, he describes the definition of a blockchain (like Zilliqa) as: “A peer-to-peer, append-only datastore that uses consensus to synchronize cryptographically-secure data”.
 
Next, he states that: "blockchains are fundamentally systems for managing valid state transitions”. For some more context, I recommend reading the whole medium article to get a better grasp of the definitions and understanding of state machines. Nevertheless, let’s try to simplify and compile it into a single paragraph. Take traffic lights as an example: all its states (red, amber, and green) are predefined, all possible outcomes are known and it doesn’t matter if you encounter the traffic light today or tomorrow. It will still behave the same. Managing the states of a traffic light can be done by triggering a sensor on the road or pushing a button resulting in one traffic lights’ state going from green to red (via amber) and another light from red to green.
 
With public blockchains like Zilliqa, this isn’t so straightforward and simple. It started with block #1 almost 1,5 years ago and every 45 seconds or so a new block linked to the previous block is being added. Resulting in a chain of blocks with transactions in it that everyone can verify from block #1 to the current #647.000+ block. The state is ever changing and the states it can find itself in are infinite. And while the traffic light might work together in tandem with various other traffic lights, it’s rather insignificant comparing it to a public blockchain. Because Zilliqa consists of 2400 nodes who need to work together to achieve consensus on what the latest valid state is while some of these nodes may have latency or broadcast issues, drop offline or are deliberately trying to attack the network, etc.
 
Now go back to the Viewblock page take a look at the amount of transaction, addresses, block and DS height and then hit refresh. Obviously as expected you see new incremented values on one or all parameters. And how did the Zilliqa blockchain manage to transition from a previous valid state to the latest valid state? By using pBFT to reach consensus on the latest valid state.
 
After having obtained the entry ticket, miners execute pBFT to reach consensus on the ever-changing state of the blockchain. pBFT requires a series of network communication between nodes, and as such there is no GPU involved (but CPU). Resulting in the total energy consumed to keep the blockchain secure, decentralized and scalable being low.
 
pBFT stands for practical Byzantine Fault Tolerance and is an optimization on the Byzantine Fault Tolerant algorithm. To quote Blockonomi: “In the context of distributed systems, Byzantine Fault Tolerance is the ability of a distributed computer network to function as desired and correctly reach a sufficient consensus despite malicious components (nodes) of the system failing or propagating incorrect information to other peers.” Zilliqa is such a distributed computer network and depends on the honesty of the nodes (shard and DS) to reach consensus and to continuously update the state with the latest block. If pBFT is a new term for you I can highly recommend the Blockonomi article.
 
The idea of pBFT was introduced in 1999 - one of the authors even won a Turing award for it - and it is well researched and applied in various blockchains and distributed systems nowadays. If you want more advanced information than the Blockonomi link provides click here. And if you’re in between Blockonomi and the University of Singapore read the Zilliqa Design Story Part 2 dating from October 2017.
Quoting from the Zilliqa tech whitepaper: “pBFT relies upon a correct leader (which is randomly selected) to begin each phase and proceed when the sufficient majority exists. In case the leader is byzantine it can stall the entire consensus protocol. To address this challenge, pBFT offers a view change protocol to replace the byzantine leader with another one.”
 
pBFT can tolerate ⅓ of the nodes being dishonest (offline counts as Byzantine = dishonest) and the consensus protocol will function without stalling or hiccups. Once there are more than ⅓ of dishonest nodes but no more than ⅔ the network will be stalled and a view change will be triggered to elect a new DS leader. Only when more than ⅔ of the nodes are dishonest (66%) double-spend attacks become possible.
 
If the network stalls no transactions can be processed and one has to wait until a new honest leader has been elected. When the mainnet was just launched and in its early phases, view changes happened regularly. As of today the last stalling of the network - and view change being triggered - was at the end of October 2019.
 
Another benefit of using pBFT for consensus besides low energy is the immediate finality it provides. Once your transaction is included in a block and the block is added to the chain it’s done. Lastly, take a look at this article where three types of finality are being defined: probabilistic, absolute and economic finality. Zilliqa falls under the absolute finality (just like Tendermint for example). Although lengthy already we skipped through some of the inner workings from Zilliqa’s consensus: read the Zilliqa Design Story Part 3 and you will be close to having a complete picture on it. Enough about PoW, sybil resistance mechanism, pBFT, etc. Another thing we haven’t looked at yet is the amount of decentralization.
 
Decentralisation
 
Currently, there are four shards, each one of them consisting of 600 nodes. 1 shard with 600 so-called DS nodes (Directory Service - they need to achieve a higher difficulty than shard nodes) and 1800 shard nodes of which 250 are shard guards (centralized nodes controlled by the team). The amount of shard guards has been steadily declining from 1200 in January 2019 to 250 as of May 2020. On the Viewblock statistics, you can see that many of the nodes are being located in the US but those are only the (CPU parts of the) shard nodes who perform pBFT. There is no data from where the PoW sources are coming. And when the Zilliqa blockchain starts reaching its transaction capacity limit, a network upgrade needs to be executed to lift the current cap of maximum 2400 nodes to allow more nodes and formation of more shards which will allow to network to keep on scaling according to demand.
Besides shard nodes there are also seed nodes. The main role of seed nodes is to serve as direct access points (for end-users and clients) to the core Zilliqa network that validates transactions. Seed nodes consolidate transaction requests and forward these to the lookup nodes (another type of nodes) for distribution to the shards in the network. Seed nodes also maintain the entire transaction history and the global state of the blockchain which is needed to provide services such as block explorers. Seed nodes in the Zilliqa network are comparable to Infura on Ethereum.
 
The seed nodes were first only operated by Zilliqa themselves, exchanges and Viewblock. Operators of seed nodes like exchanges had no incentive to open them for the greater public. They were centralised at first. Decentralisation at the seed nodes level has been steadily rolled out since March 2020 ( Zilliqa Improvement Proposal 3 ). Currently the amount of seed nodes is being increased, they are public-facing and at the same time PoS is applied to incentivize seed node operators and make it possible for ZIL holders to stake and earn passive yields. Important distinction: seed nodes are not involved with consensus! That is still PoW as entry ticket and pBFT for the actual consensus.
 
5% of the block rewards are being assigned to seed nodes (from the beginning in 2019) and those are being used to pay out ZIL stakers. The 5% block rewards with an annual yield of 10.03% translate to roughly 610 MM ZILs in total that can be staked. Exchanges use the custodial variant of staking and wallets like Moonlet will use the non-custodial version (starting in Q3 2020). Staking is being done by sending ZILs to a smart contract created by Zilliqa and audited by Quantstamp.
 
With a high amount of DS; shard nodes and seed nodes becoming more decentralized too, Zilliqa qualifies for the label of decentralized in my opinion.
 
Smart contracts
 
Let me start by saying I’m not a developer and my programming skills are quite limited. So I‘m taking the ELI5 route (maybe 12) but if you are familiar with Javascript, Solidity or specifically OCaml please head straight to Scilla - read the docs to get a good initial grasp of how Zilliqa’s smart contract language Scilla works and if you ask yourself “why another programming language?” check this article. And if you want to play around with some sample contracts in an IDE click here. The faucet can be found here. And more information on architecture, dapp development and API can be found on the Developer Portal.
If you are more into listening and watching: check this recent webinar explaining Zilliqa and Scilla. Link is time-stamped so you’ll start right away with a platform introduction, roadmap 2020 and afterwards a proper Scilla introduction.
 
Generalized: programming languages can be divided into being ‘object-oriented’ or ‘functional’. Here is an ELI5 given by software development academy: * “all programs have two basic components, data – what the program knows – and behavior – what the program can do with that data. So object-oriented programming states that combining data and related behaviors in one place, is called “object”, which makes it easier to understand how a particular program works. On the other hand, functional programming argues that data and behavior are different things and should be separated to ensure their clarity.” *
 
Scilla is on the functional side and shares similarities with OCaml: OCaml is a general-purpose programming language with an emphasis on expressiveness and safety. It has an advanced type system that helps catch your mistakes without getting in your way. It's used in environments where a single mistake can cost millions and speed matters, is supported by an active community, and has a rich set of libraries and development tools. For all its power, OCaml is also pretty simple, which is one reason it's often used as a teaching language.
 
Scilla is blockchain agnostic, can be implemented onto other blockchains as well, is recognized by academics and won a so-called Distinguished Artifact Award award at the end of last year.
 
One of the reasons why the Zilliqa team decided to create their own programming language focused on preventing smart contract vulnerabilities is that adding logic on a blockchain, programming, means that you cannot afford to make mistakes. Otherwise, it could cost you. It’s all great and fun blockchains being immutable but updating your code because you found a bug isn’t the same as with a regular web application for example. And with smart contracts, it inherently involves cryptocurrencies in some form thus value.
 
Another difference with programming languages on a blockchain is gas. Every transaction you do on a smart contract platform like Zilliqa or Ethereum costs gas. With gas you basically pay for computational costs. Sending a ZIL from address A to address B costs 0.001 ZIL currently. Smart contracts are more complex, often involve various functions and require more gas (if gas is a new concept click here ).
 
So with Scilla, similar to Solidity, you need to make sure that “every function in your smart contract will run as expected without hitting gas limits. An improper resource analysis may lead to situations where funds may get stuck simply because a part of the smart contract code cannot be executed due to gas limits. Such constraints are not present in traditional software systems”. Scilla design story part 1
 
Some examples of smart contract issues you’d want to avoid are: leaking funds, ‘unexpected changes to critical state variables’ (example: someone other than you setting his or her address as the owner of the smart contract after creation) or simply killing a contract.
 
Scilla also allows for formal verification. Wikipedia to the rescue: In the context of hardware and software systems, formal verification is the act of proving or disproving the correctness of intended algorithms underlying a system with respect to a certain formal specification or property, using formal methods of mathematics.
 
Formal verification can be helpful in proving the correctness of systems such as: cryptographic protocols, combinational circuits, digital circuits with internal memory, and software expressed as source code.
 
Scilla is being developed hand-in-hand with formalization of its semantics and its embedding into the Coq proof assistant — a state-of-the art tool for mechanized proofs about properties of programs.”
 
Simply put, with Scilla and accompanying tooling developers can be mathematically sure and proof that the smart contract they’ve written does what he or she intends it to do.
 
Smart contract on a sharded environment and state sharding
 
There is one more topic I’d like to touch on: smart contract execution in a sharded environment (and what is the effect of state sharding). This is a complex topic. I’m not able to explain it any easier than what is posted here. But I will try to compress the post into something easy to digest.
 
Earlier on we have established that Zilliqa can process transactions in parallel due to network sharding. This is where the linear scalability comes from. We can define simple transactions: a transaction from address A to B (Category 1), a transaction where a user interacts with one smart contract (Category 2) and the most complex ones where triggering a transaction results in multiple smart contracts being involved (Category 3). The shards are able to process transactions on their own without interference of the other shards. With Category 1 transactions that is doable, with Category 2 transactions sometimes if that address is in the same shard as the smart contract but with Category 3 you definitely need communication between the shards. Solving that requires to make a set of communication rules the protocol needs to follow in order to process all transactions in a generalised fashion.
 
And this is where the downsides of state sharding comes in currently. All shards in Zilliqa have access to the complete state. Yes the state size (0.1 GB at the moment) grows and all of the nodes need to store it but it also means that they don’t need to shop around for information available on other shards. Requiring more communication and adding more complexity. Computer science knowledge and/or developer knowledge required links if you want to dig further: Scilla - language grammar Scilla - Foundations for Verifiable Decentralised Computations on a Blockchain Gas Accounting NUS x Zilliqa: Smart contract language workshop
 
Easier to follow links on programming Scilla https://learnscilla.com/home Ivan on Tech
 
Roadmap / Zilliqa 2.0
 
There is no strict defined roadmap but here are topics being worked on. And via the Zilliqa website there is also more information on the projects they are working on.
 
Business & Partnerships
 
It’s not only technology in which Zilliqa seems to be excelling as their ecosystem has been expanding and starting to grow rapidly. The project is on a mission to provide OpenFinance (OpFi) to the world and Singapore is the right place to be due to its progressive regulations and futuristic thinking. Singapore has taken a proactive approach towards cryptocurrencies by introducing the Payment Services Act 2019 (PS Act). Among other things, the PS Act will regulate intermediaries dealing with certain cryptocurrencies, with a particular focus on consumer protection and anti-money laundering. It will also provide a stable regulatory licensing and operating framework for cryptocurrency entities, effectively covering all crypto businesses and exchanges based in Singapore. According to PWC 82% of the surveyed executives in Singapore reported blockchain initiatives underway and 13% of them have already brought the initiatives live to the market. There is also an increasing list of organizations that are starting to provide digital payment services. Moreover, Singaporean blockchain developers Building Cities Beyond has recently created an innovation $15 million grant to encourage development on its ecosystem. This all suggests that Singapore tries to position itself as (one of) the leading blockchain hubs in the world.
 
Zilliqa seems to already take advantage of this and recently helped launch Hg Exchange on their platform, together with financial institutions PhillipCapital, PrimePartners and Fundnel. Hg Exchange, which is now approved by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), uses smart contracts to represent digital assets. Through Hg Exchange financial institutions worldwide can use Zilliqa's safe-by-design smart contracts to enable the trading of private equities. For example, think of companies such as Grab, Airbnb, SpaceX that are not available for public trading right now. Hg Exchange will allow investors to buy shares of private companies & unicorns and capture their value before an IPO. Anquan, the main company behind Zilliqa, has also recently announced that they became a partner and shareholder in TEN31 Bank, which is a fully regulated bank allowing for tokenization of assets and is aiming to bridge the gap between conventional banking and the blockchain world. If STOs, the tokenization of assets, and equity trading will continue to increase, then Zilliqa’s public blockchain would be the ideal candidate due to its strategic positioning, partnerships, regulatory compliance and the technology that is being built on top of it.
 
What is also very encouraging is their focus on banking the un(der)banked. They are launching a stablecoin basket starting with XSGD. As many of you know, stablecoins are currently mostly used for trading. However, Zilliqa is actively trying to broaden the use case of stablecoins. I recommend everybody to read this text that Amrit Kumar wrote (one of the co-founders). These stablecoins will be integrated in the traditional markets and bridge the gap between the crypto world and the traditional world. This could potentially revolutionize and legitimise the crypto space if retailers and companies will for example start to use stablecoins for payments or remittances, instead of it solely being used for trading.
 
Zilliqa also released their DeFi strategic roadmap (dating November 2019) which seems to be aligning well with their OpFi strategy. A non-custodial DEX is coming to Zilliqa made by Switcheo which allows cross-chain trading (atomic swaps) between ETH, EOS and ZIL based tokens. They also signed a Memorandum of Understanding for a (soon to be announced) USD stablecoin. And as Zilliqa is all about regulations and being compliant, I’m speculating on it to be a regulated USD stablecoin. Furthermore, XSGD is already created and visible on block explorer and XIDR (Indonesian Stablecoin) is also coming soon via StraitsX. Here also an overview of the Tech Stack for Financial Applications from September 2019. Further quoting Amrit Kumar on this:
 
There are two basic building blocks in DeFi/OpFi though: 1) stablecoins as you need a non-volatile currency to get access to this market and 2) a dex to be able to trade all these financial assets. The rest are built on top of these blocks.
 
So far, together with our partners and community, we have worked on developing these building blocks with XSGD as a stablecoin. We are working on bringing a USD-backed stablecoin as well. We will soon have a decentralised exchange developed by Switcheo. And with HGX going live, we are also venturing into the tokenization space. More to come in the future.”
 
Additionally, they also have this ZILHive initiative that injects capital into projects. There have been already 6 waves of various teams working on infrastructure, innovation and research, and they are not from ASEAN or Singapore only but global: see Grantees breakdown by country. Over 60 project teams from over 20 countries have contributed to Zilliqa's ecosystem. This includes individuals and teams developing wallets, explorers, developer toolkits, smart contract testing frameworks, dapps, etc. As some of you may know, Unstoppable Domains (UD) blew up when they launched on Zilliqa. UD aims to replace cryptocurrency addresses with a human-readable name and allows for uncensorable websites. Zilliqa will probably be the only one able to handle all these transactions onchain due to ability to scale and its resulting low fees which is why the UD team launched this on Zilliqa in the first place. Furthermore, Zilliqa also has a strong emphasis on security, compliance, and privacy, which is why they partnered with companies like Elliptic, ChainSecurity (part of PwC Switzerland), and Incognito. Their sister company Aqilliz (Zilliqa spelled backwards) focuses on revolutionizing the digital advertising space and is doing interesting things like using Zilliqa to track outdoor digital ads with companies like Foodpanda.
 
Zilliqa is listed on nearly all major exchanges, having several different fiat-gateways and recently have been added to Binance’s margin trading and futures trading with really good volume. They also have a very impressive team with good credentials and experience. They don't just have “tech people”. They have a mix of tech people, business people, marketeers, scientists, and more. Naturally, it's good to have a mix of people with different skill sets if you work in the crypto space.
 
Marketing & Community
 
Zilliqa has a very strong community. If you just follow their Twitter their engagement is much higher for a coin that has approximately 80k followers. They also have been ‘coin of the day’ by LunarCrush many times. LunarCrush tracks real-time cryptocurrency value and social data. According to their data, it seems Zilliqa has a more fundamental and deeper understanding of marketing and community engagement than almost all other coins. While almost all coins have been a bit frozen in the last months, Zilliqa seems to be on its own bull run. It was somewhere in the 100s a few months ago and is currently ranked #46 on CoinGecko. Their official Telegram also has over 20k people and is very active, and their community channel which is over 7k now is more active and larger than many other official channels. Their local communities also seem to be growing.
 
Moreover, their community started ‘Zillacracy’ together with the Zilliqa core team ( see www.zillacracy.com ). It’s a community-run initiative where people from all over the world are now helping with marketing and development on Zilliqa. Since its launch in February 2020 they have been doing a lot and will also run their own non-custodial seed node for staking. This seed node will also allow them to start generating revenue for them to become a self sustaining entity that could potentially scale up to become a decentralized company working in parallel with the Zilliqa core team. Comparing it to all the other smart contract platforms (e.g. Cardano, EOS, Tezos etc.) they don't seem to have started a similar initiative (correct me if I’m wrong though). This suggests in my opinion that these other smart contract platforms do not fully understand how to utilize the ‘power of the community’. This is something you cannot ‘buy with money’ and gives many projects in the space a disadvantage.
 
Zilliqa also released two social products called SocialPay and Zeeves. SocialPay allows users to earn ZILs while tweeting with a specific hashtag. They have recently used it in partnership with the Singapore Red Cross for a marketing campaign after their initial pilot program. It seems like a very valuable social product with a good use case. I can see a lot of traditional companies entering the space through this product, which they seem to suggest will happen. Tokenizing hashtags with smart contracts to get network effect is a very smart and innovative idea.
 
Regarding Zeeves, this is a tipping bot for Telegram. They already have 1000s of signups and they plan to keep upgrading it for more and more people to use it (e.g. they recently have added a quiz features). They also use it during AMAs to reward people in real-time. It’s a very smart approach to grow their communities and get familiar with ZIL. I can see this becoming very big on Telegram. This tool suggests, again, that the Zilliqa team has a deeper understanding of what the crypto space and community needs and is good at finding the right innovative tools to grow and scale.
 
To be honest, I haven’t covered everything (i’m also reaching the character limited haha). So many updates happening lately that it's hard to keep up, such as the International Monetary Fund mentioning Zilliqa in their report, custodial and non-custodial Staking, Binance Margin, Futures, Widget, entering the Indian market, and more. The Head of Marketing Colin Miles has also released this as an overview of what is coming next. And last but not least, Vitalik Buterin has been mentioning Zilliqa lately acknowledging Zilliqa and mentioning that both projects have a lot of room to grow. There is much more info of course and a good part of it has been served to you on a silver platter. I invite you to continue researching by yourself :-) And if you have any comments or questions please post here!
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Bitcoin Mining Difficulty Adjusts 10% Upwards For the First Time in Months

Bitcoin Mining Difficulty Adjusts 10% Upwards For the First Time in Months submitted by Suberg to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

Why i’m bullish on Zilliqa (long read)

Hey all, I've been researching coins since 2017 and have gone through 100s of them in the last 3 years. I got introduced to blockchain via Bitcoin of course, analysed Ethereum thereafter and from that moment I have a keen interest in smart contact platforms. I’m passionate about Ethereum but I find Zilliqa to have a better risk reward ratio. Especially because Zilliqa has found an elegant balance between being secure, decentralised and scalable in my opinion.
 
Below I post my analysis why from all the coins I went through I’m most bullish on Zilliqa (yes I went through Tezos, EOS, NEO, VeChain, Harmony, Algorand, Cardano etc.). Note that this is not investment advice and although it's a thorough analysis there is obviously some bias involved. Looking forward to what you all think!
 
Fun fact: the name Zilliqa is a play on ‘silica’ silicon dioxide which means “Silicon for the high-throughput consensus computer.”
 
This post is divided into (i) Technology, (ii) Business & Partnerships, and (iii) Marketing & Community. I’ve tried to make the technology part readable for a broad audience. If you’ve ever tried understanding the inner workings of Bitcoin and Ethereum you should be able to grasp most parts. Otherwise just skim through and once you are zoning out head to the next part.
 
Technology and some more:
 
Introduction The technology is one of the main reasons why I’m so bullish on Zilliqa. First thing you see on their website is: “Zilliqa is a high-performance, high-security blockchain platform for enterprises and next-generation applications.” These are some bold statements.
 
Before we deep dive into the technology let’s take a step back in time first as they have quite the history. The initial research paper from which Zilliqa originated dates back to August 2016: Elastico: A Secure Sharding Protocol For Open Blockchains where Loi Luu (Kyber Network) is one of the co-authors. Other ideas that led to the development of what Zilliqa has become today are: Bitcoin-NG, collective signing CoSi, ByzCoin and Omniledger.
 
The technical white paper was made public in August 2017 and since then they have achieved everything stated in the white paper and also created their own open source intermediate level smart contract language called Scilla (functional programming language similar to OCaml) too.
 
Mainnet is live since end of January 2019 with daily transaction rate growing continuously. About a week ago mainnet reached 5 million transactions, 500.000+ addresses in total along with 2400 nodes keeping the network decentralised and secure. Circulating supply is nearing 11 billion and currently only mining rewards are left. Maximum supply is 21 billion with annual inflation being 7.13% currently and will only decrease with time.
 
Zilliqa realised early on that the usage of public cryptocurrencies and smart contracts were increasing but decentralised, secure and scalable alternatives were lacking in the crypto space. They proposed to apply sharding onto a public smart contract blockchain where the transaction rate increases almost linear with the increase in amount of nodes. More nodes = higher transaction throughput and increased decentralisation. Sharding comes in many forms and Zilliqa uses network-, transaction- and computational sharding. Network sharding opens up the possibility of using transaction- and computational sharding on top. Zilliqa does not use state sharding for now. We’ll come back to this later.
 
Before we continue disecting how Zilliqa achieves such from a technological standpoint it’s good to keep in mind that a blockchain being decentralised and secure and scalable is still one of the main hurdles in allowing widespread usage of decentralised networks. In my opinion this needs to be solved first before blockchains can get to the point where they can create and add large scale value. So I invite you to read the next section to grasp the underlying fundamentals. Because after all these premises need to be true otherwise there isn’t a fundamental case to be bullish on Zilliqa, right?
 
Down the rabbit hole
 
How have they achieved this? Let’s define the basics first: key players on Zilliqa are the users and the miners. A user is anybody who uses the blockchain to transfer funds or run smart contracts. Miners are the (shard) nodes in the network who run the consensus protocol and get rewarded for their service in Zillings (ZIL). The mining network is divided into several smaller networks called shards, which is also referred to as ‘network sharding’. Miners subsequently are randomly assigned to a shard by another set of miners called DS (Directory Service) nodes. The regular shards process transactions and the outputs of these shards are eventually combined by the DS shard as they reach consensus on the final state. More on how these DS shards reach consensus (via pBFT) will be explained later on.
 
The Zilliqa network produces two types of blocks: DS blocks and Tx blocks. One DS Block consists of 100 Tx Blocks. And as previously mentioned there are two types of nodes concerned with reaching consensus: shard nodes and DS nodes. Becoming a shard node or DS node is being defined by the result of a PoW cycle (Ethash) at the beginning of the DS Block. All candidate mining nodes compete with each other and run the PoW (Proof-of-Work) cycle for 60 seconds and the submissions achieving the highest difficulty will be allowed on the network. And to put it in perspective: the average difficulty for one DS node is ~ 2 Th/s equaling 2.000.000 Mh/s or 55 thousand+ GeForce GTX 1070 / 8 GB GPUs at 35.4 Mh/s. Each DS Block 10 new DS nodes are allowed. And a shard node needs to provide around 8.53 GH/s currently (around 240 GTX 1070s). Dual mining ETH/ETC and ZIL is possible and can be done via mining software such as Phoenix and Claymore. There are pools and if you have large amounts of hashing power (Ethash) available you could mine solo.
 
The PoW cycle of 60 seconds is a peak performance and acts as an entry ticket to the network. The entry ticket is called a sybil resistance mechanism and makes it incredibly hard for adversaries to spawn lots of identities and manipulate the network with these identities. And after every 100 Tx Blocks which corresponds to roughly 1,5 hour this PoW process repeats. In between these 1,5 hour no PoW needs to be done meaning Zilliqa’s energy consumption to keep the network secure is low. For more detailed information on how mining works click here.
Okay, hats off to you. You have made it this far. Before we go any deeper down the rabbit hole we first must understand why Zilliqa goes through all of the above technicalities and understand a bit more what a blockchain on a more fundamental level is. Because the core of Zilliqa’s consensus protocol relies on the usage of pBFT (practical Byzantine Fault Tolerance) we need to know more about state machines and their function. Navigate to Viewblock, a Zilliqa block explorer, and just come back to this article. We will use this site to navigate through a few concepts.
 
We have established that Zilliqa is a public and distributed blockchain. Meaning that everyone with an internet connection can send ZILs, trigger smart contracts etc. and there is no central authority who fully controls the network. Zilliqa and other public and distributed blockchains (like Bitcoin and Ethereum) can also be defined as state machines.
 
Taking the liberty of paraphrasing examples and definitions given by Samuel Brooks’ medium article, he describes the definition of a blockchain (like Zilliqa) as:
“A peer-to-peer, append-only datastore that uses consensus to synchronise cryptographically-secure data”.
 
Next he states that: >“blockchains are fundamentally systems for managing valid state transitions”.* For some more context, I recommend reading the whole medium article to get a better grasp of the definitions and understanding of state machines. Nevertheless, let’s try to simplify and compile it into a single paragraph. Take traffic lights as an example: all its states (red, amber and green) are predefined, all possible outcomes are known and it doesn’t matter if you encounter the traffic light today or tomorrow. It will still behave the same. Managing the states of a traffic light can be done by triggering a sensor on the road or pushing a button resulting in one traffic lights’ state going from green to red (via amber) and another light from red to green.
 
With public blockchains like Zilliqa this isn’t so straightforward and simple. It started with block #1 almost 1,5 years ago and every 45 seconds or so a new block linked to the previous block is being added. Resulting in a chain of blocks with transactions in it that everyone can verify from block #1 to the current #647.000+ block. The state is ever changing and the states it can find itself in are infinite. And while the traffic light might work together in tandem with various other traffic lights, it’s rather insignificant comparing it to a public blockchain. Because Zilliqa consists of 2400 nodes who need to work together to achieve consensus on what the latest valid state is while some of these nodes may have latency or broadcast issues, drop offline or are deliberately trying to attack the network etc.
 
Now go back to the Viewblock page take a look at the amount of transaction, addresses, block and DS height and then hit refresh. Obviously as expected you see new incremented values on one or all parameters. And how did the Zilliqa blockchain manage to transition from a previous valid state to the latest valid state? By using pBFT to reach consensus on the latest valid state.
 
After having obtained the entry ticket, miners execute pBFT to reach consensus on the ever changing state of the blockchain. pBFT requires a series of network communication between nodes, and as such there is no GPU involved (but CPU). Resulting in the total energy consumed to keep the blockchain secure, decentralised and scalable being low.
 
pBFT stands for practical Byzantine Fault Tolerance and is an optimisation on the Byzantine Fault Tolerant algorithm. To quote Blockonomi: “In the context of distributed systems, Byzantine Fault Tolerance is the ability of a distributed computer network to function as desired and correctly reach a sufficient consensus despite malicious components (nodes) of the system failing or propagating incorrect information to other peers.” Zilliqa is such a distributed computer network and depends on the honesty of the nodes (shard and DS) to reach consensus and to continuously update the state with the latest block. If pBFT is a new term for you I can highly recommend the Blockonomi article.
 
The idea of pBFT was introduced in 1999 - one of the authors even won a Turing award for it - and it is well researched and applied in various blockchains and distributed systems nowadays. If you want more advanced information than the Blockonomi link provides click here. And if you’re in between Blockonomi and University of Singapore read the Zilliqa Design Story Part 2 dating from October 2017.
Quoting from the Zilliqa tech whitepaper: “pBFT relies upon a correct leader (which is randomly selected) to begin each phase and proceed when the sufficient majority exists. In case the leader is byzantine it can stall the entire consensus protocol. To address this challenge, pBFT offers a view change protocol to replace the byzantine leader with another one.”
 
pBFT can tolerate ⅓ of the nodes being dishonest (offline counts as Byzantine = dishonest) and the consensus protocol will function without stalling or hiccups. Once there are more than ⅓ of dishonest nodes but no more than ⅔ the network will be stalled and a view change will be triggered to elect a new DS leader. Only when more than ⅔ of the nodes are dishonest (>66%) double spend attacks become possible.
 
If the network stalls no transactions can be processed and one has to wait until a new honest leader has been elected. When the mainnet was just launched and in its early phases, view changes happened regularly. As of today the last stalling of the network - and view change being triggered - was at the end of October 2019.
 
Another benefit of using pBFT for consensus besides low energy is the immediate finality it provides. Once your transaction is included in a block and the block is added to the chain it’s done. Lastly, take a look at this article where three types of finality are being defined: probabilistic, absolute and economic finality. Zilliqa falls under the absolute finality (just like Tendermint for example). Although lengthy already we skipped through some of the inner workings from Zilliqa’s consensus: read the Zilliqa Design Story Part 3 and you will be close to having a complete picture on it. Enough about PoW, sybil resistance mechanism, pBFT etc. Another thing we haven’t looked at yet is the amount of decentralisation.
 
Decentralisation
 
Currently there are four shards, each one of them consisting of 600 nodes. 1 shard with 600 so called DS nodes (Directory Service - they need to achieve a higher difficulty than shard nodes) and 1800 shard nodes of which 250 are shard guards (centralised nodes controlled by the team). The amount of shard guards has been steadily declining from 1200 in January 2019 to 250 as of May 2020. On the Viewblock statistics you can see that many of the nodes are being located in the US but those are only the (CPU parts of the) shard nodes who perform pBFT. There is no data from where the PoW sources are coming. And when the Zilliqa blockchain starts reaching their transaction capacity limit, a network upgrade needs to be executed to lift the current cap of maximum 2400 nodes to allow more nodes and formation of more shards which will allow to network to keep on scaling according to demand.
Besides shard nodes there are also seed nodes. The main role of seed nodes is to serve as direct access points (for end users and clients) to the core Zilliqa network that validates transactions. Seed nodes consolidate transaction requests and forward these to the lookup nodes (another type of nodes) for distribution to the shards in the network. Seed nodes also maintain the entire transaction history and the global state of the blockchain which is needed to provide services such as block explorers. Seed nodes in the Zilliqa network are comparable to Infura on Ethereum.
 
The seed nodes were first only operated by Zilliqa themselves, exchanges and Viewblock. Operators of seed nodes like exchanges had no incentive to open them for the greater public.They were centralised at first. Decentralisation at the seed nodes level has been steadily rolled out since March 2020 ( Zilliqa Improvement Proposal 3 ). Currently the amount of seed nodes is being increased, they are public facing and at the same time PoS is applied to incentivize seed node operators and make it possible for ZIL holders to stake and earn passive yields. Important distinction: seed nodes are not involved with consensus! That is still PoW as entry ticket and pBFT for the actual consensus.
 
5% of the block rewards are being assigned to seed nodes (from the beginning in 2019) and those are being used to pay out ZIL stakers.The 5% block rewards with an annual yield of 10.03% translates to roughly 610 MM ZILs in total that can be staked. Exchanges use the custodial variant of staking and wallets like Moonlet will use the non custodial version (starting in Q3 2020). Staking is being done by sending ZILs to a smart contract created by Zilliqa and audited by Quantstamp.
 
With a high amount of DS & shard nodes and seed nodes becoming more decentralised too, Zilliqa qualifies for the label of decentralised in my opinion.
 
Smart contracts
 
Let me start by saying I’m not a developer and my programming skills are quite limited. So I‘m taking the ELI5 route (maybe 12) but if you are familiar with Javascript, Solidity or specifically OCaml please head straight to Scilla - read the docs to get a good initial grasp of how Zilliqa’s smart contract language Scilla works and if you ask yourself “why another programming language?” check this article. And if you want to play around with some sample contracts in an IDE click here. Faucet can be found here. And more information on architecture, dapp development and API can be found on the Developer Portal.
If you are more into listening and watching: check this recent webinar explaining Zilliqa and Scilla. Link is time stamped so you’ll start right away with a platform introduction, R&D roadmap 2020 and afterwards a proper Scilla introduction.
 
Generalised: programming languages can be divided into being ‘object oriented’ or ‘functional’. Here is an ELI5 given by software development academy: > “all programmes have two basic components, data – what the programme knows – and behaviour – what the programme can do with that data. So object-oriented programming states that combining data and related behaviours in one place, is called “object”, which makes it easier to understand how a particular program works. On the other hand, functional programming argues that data and behaviour are different things and should be separated to ensure their clarity.”
 
Scilla is on the functional side and shares similarities with OCaml: > OCaml is a general purpose programming language with an emphasis on expressiveness and safety. It has an advanced type system that helps catch your mistakes without getting in your way. It's used in environments where a single mistake can cost millions and speed matters, is supported by an active community, and has a rich set of libraries and development tools. For all its power, OCaml is also pretty simple, which is one reason it's often used as a teaching language.
 
Scilla is blockchain agnostic, can be implemented onto other blockchains as well, is recognised by academics and won a so called Distinguished Artifact Award award at the end of last year.
 
One of the reasons why the Zilliqa team decided to create their own programming language focused on preventing smart contract vulnerabilities safety is that adding logic on a blockchain, programming, means that you cannot afford to make mistakes. Otherwise it could cost you. It’s all great and fun blockchains being immutable but updating your code because you found a bug isn’t the same as with a regular web application for example. And with smart contracts it inherently involves cryptocurrencies in some form thus value.
 
Another difference with programming languages on a blockchain is gas. Every transaction you do on a smart contract platform like Zilliqa for Ethereum costs gas. With gas you basically pay for computational costs. Sending a ZIL from address A to address B costs 0.001 ZIL currently. Smart contracts are more complex, often involve various functions and require more gas (if gas is a new concept click here ).
 
So with Scilla, similar to Solidity, you need to make sure that “every function in your smart contract will run as expected without hitting gas limits. An improper resource analysis may lead to situations where funds may get stuck simply because a part of the smart contract code cannot be executed due to gas limits. Such constraints are not present in traditional software systems”. Scilla design story part 1
 
Some examples of smart contract issues you’d want to avoid are: leaking funds, ‘unexpected changes to critical state variables’ (example: someone other than you setting his or her address as the owner of the smart contract after creation) or simply killing a contract.
 
Scilla also allows for formal verification. Wikipedia to the rescue:
In the context of hardware and software systems, formal verification is the act of proving or disproving the correctness of intended algorithms underlying a system with respect to a certain formal specification or property, using formal methods of mathematics.
 
Formal verification can be helpful in proving the correctness of systems such as: cryptographic protocols, combinational circuits, digital circuits with internal memory, and software expressed as source code.
 
Scilla is being developed hand-in-hand with formalization of its semantics and its embedding into the Coq proof assistant — a state-of-the art tool for mechanized proofs about properties of programs.”
 
Simply put, with Scilla and accompanying tooling developers can be mathematically sure and proof that the smart contract they’ve written does what he or she intends it to do.
 
Smart contract on a sharded environment and state sharding
 
There is one more topic I’d like to touch on: smart contract execution in a sharded environment (and what is the effect of state sharding). This is a complex topic. I’m not able to explain it any easier than what is posted here. But I will try to compress the post into something easy to digest.
 
Earlier on we have established that Zilliqa can process transactions in parallel due to network sharding. This is where the linear scalability comes from. We can define simple transactions: a transaction from address A to B (Category 1), a transaction where a user interacts with one smart contract (Category 2) and the most complex ones where triggering a transaction results in multiple smart contracts being involved (Category 3). The shards are able to process transactions on their own without interference of the other shards. With Category 1 transactions that is doable, with Category 2 transactions sometimes if that address is in the same shard as the smart contract but with Category 3 you definitely need communication between the shards. Solving that requires to make a set of communication rules the protocol needs to follow in order to process all transactions in a generalised fashion.
 
And this is where the downsides of state sharding comes in currently. All shards in Zilliqa have access to the complete state. Yes the state size (0.1 GB at the moment) grows and all of the nodes need to store it but it also means that they don’t need to shop around for information available on other shards. Requiring more communication and adding more complexity. Computer science knowledge and/or developer knowledge required links if you want to dig further: Scilla - language grammar Scilla - Foundations for Verifiable Decentralised Computations on a Blockchain Gas Accounting NUS x Zilliqa: Smart contract language workshop
 
Easier to follow links on programming Scilla https://learnscilla.com/home Ivan on Tech
 
Roadmap / Zilliqa 2.0
 
There is no strict defined roadmap but here are topics being worked on. And via the Zilliqa website there is also more information on the projects they are working on.
 
Business & Partnerships  
It’s not only technology in which Zilliqa seems to be excelling as their ecosystem has been expanding and starting to grow rapidly. The project is on a mission to provide OpenFinance (OpFi) to the world and Singapore is the right place to be due to its progressive regulations and futuristic thinking. Singapore has taken a proactive approach towards cryptocurrencies by introducing the Payment Services Act 2019 (PS Act). Among other things, the PS Act will regulate intermediaries dealing with certain cryptocurrencies, with a particular focus on consumer protection and anti-money laundering. It will also provide a stable regulatory licensing and operating framework for cryptocurrency entities, effectively covering all crypto businesses and exchanges based in Singapore. According to PWC 82% of the surveyed executives in Singapore reported blockchain initiatives underway and 13% of them have already brought the initiatives live to the market. There is also an increasing list of organisations that are starting to provide digital payment services. Moreover, Singaporean blockchain developers Building Cities Beyond has recently created an innovation $15 million grant to encourage development on its ecosystem. This all suggest that Singapore tries to position itself as (one of) the leading blockchain hubs in the world.
 
Zilliqa seems to already taking advantage of this and recently helped launch Hg Exchange on their platform, together with financial institutions PhillipCapital, PrimePartners and Fundnel. Hg Exchange, which is now approved by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS), uses smart contracts to represent digital assets. Through Hg Exchange financial institutions worldwide can use Zilliqa's safe-by-design smart contracts to enable the trading of private equities. For example, think of companies such as Grab, AirBnB, SpaceX that are not available for public trading right now. Hg Exchange will allow investors to buy shares of private companies & unicorns and capture their value before an IPO. Anquan, the main company behind Zilliqa, has also recently announced that they became a partner and shareholder in TEN31 Bank, which is a fully regulated bank allowing for tokenization of assets and is aiming to bridge the gap between conventional banking and the blockchain world. If STOs, the tokenization of assets, and equity trading will continue to increase, then Zilliqa’s public blockchain would be the ideal candidate due to its strategic positioning, partnerships, regulatory compliance and the technology that is being built on top of it.
 
What is also very encouraging is their focus on banking the un(der)banked. They are launching a stablecoin basket starting with XSGD. As many of you know, stablecoins are currently mostly used for trading. However, Zilliqa is actively trying to broaden the use case of stablecoins. I recommend everybody to read this text that Amrit Kumar wrote (one of the co-founders). These stablecoins will be integrated in the traditional markets and bridge the gap between the crypto world and the traditional world. This could potentially revolutionize and legitimise the crypto space if retailers and companies will for example start to use stablecoins for payments or remittances, instead of it solely being used for trading.
 
Zilliqa also released their DeFi strategic roadmap (dating November 2019) which seems to be aligning well with their OpFi strategy. A non-custodial DEX is coming to Zilliqa made by Switcheo which allows cross-chain trading (atomic swaps) between ETH, EOS and ZIL based tokens. They also signed a Memorandum of Understanding for a (soon to be announced) USD stablecoin. And as Zilliqa is all about regulations and being compliant, I’m speculating on it to be a regulated USD stablecoin. Furthermore, XSGD is already created and visible on block explorer and XIDR (Indonesian Stablecoin) is also coming soon via StraitsX. Here also an overview of the Tech Stack for Financial Applications from September 2019. Further quoting Amrit Kumar on this:
 
There are two basic building blocks in DeFi/OpFi though: 1) stablecoins as you need a non-volatile currency to get access to this market and 2) a dex to be able to trade all these financial assets. The rest are build on top of these blocks.
 
So far, together with our partners and community, we have worked on developing these building blocks with XSGD as a stablecoin. We are working on bringing a USD-backed stablecoin as well. We will soon have a decentralised exchange developed by Switcheo. And with HGX going live, we are also venturing into the tokenization space. More to come in the future.”*
 
Additionally, they also have this ZILHive initiative that injects capital into projects. There have been already 6 waves of various teams working on infrastructure, innovation and research, and they are not from ASEAN or Singapore only but global: see Grantees breakdown by country. Over 60 project teams from over 20 countries have contributed to Zilliqa's ecosystem. This includes individuals and teams developing wallets, explorers, developer toolkits, smart contract testing frameworks, dapps, etc. As some of you may know, Unstoppable Domains (UD) blew up when they launched on Zilliqa. UD aims to replace cryptocurrency addresses with a human readable name and allows for uncensorable websites. Zilliqa will probably be the only one able to handle all these transactions onchain due to ability to scale and its resulting low fees which is why the UD team launched this on Zilliqa in the first place. Furthermore, Zilliqa also has a strong emphasis on security, compliance, and privacy, which is why they partnered with companies like Elliptic, ChainSecurity (part of PwC Switzerland), and Incognito. Their sister company Aqilliz (Zilliqa spelled backwards) focuses on revolutionizing the digital advertising space and is doing interesting things like using Zilliqa to track outdoor digital ads with companies like Foodpanda.
 
Zilliqa is listed on nearly all major exchanges, having several different fiat-gateways and recently have been added to Binance’s margin trading and futures trading with really good volume. They also have a very impressive team with good credentials and experience. They dont just have “tech people”. They have a mix of tech people, business people, marketeers, scientists, and more. Naturally, it's good to have a mix of people with different skill sets if you work in the crypto space.
 
Marketing & Community
 
Zilliqa has a very strong community. If you just follow their Twitter their engagement is much higher for a coin that has approximately 80k followers. They also have been ‘coin of the day’ by LunarCrush many times. LunarCrush tracks real-time cryptocurrency value and social data. According to their data it seems Zilliqa has a more fundamental and deeper understanding of marketing and community engagement than almost all other coins. While almost all coins have been a bit frozen in the last months, Zilliqa seems to be on its own bull run. It was somewhere in the 100s a few months ago and is currently ranked #46 on CoinGecko. Their official Telegram also has over 20k people and is very active, and their community channel which is over 7k now is more active and larger than many other official channels. Their local communities) also seem to be growing.
 
Moreover, their community started ‘Zillacracy’ together with the Zilliqa core team ( see www.zillacracy.com ). It’s a community run initiative where people from all over the world are now helping with marketing and development on Zilliqa. Since its launch in February 2020 they have been doing a lot and will also run their own non custodial seed node for staking. This seed node will also allow them to start generating revenue for them to become a self sustaining entity that could potentially scale up to become a decentralized company working in parallel with the Zilliqa core team. Comparing it to all the other smart contract platforms (e.g. Cardano, EOS, Tezos etc.) they don't seem to have started a similar initiatives (correct me if I’m wrong though). This suggest in my opinion that these other smart contract platforms do not fully understand how to utilize the ‘power of the community’. This is something you cannot ‘buy with money’ and gives many projects in the space a disadvantage.
 
Zilliqa also released two social products called SocialPay and Zeeves. SocialPay allows users to earn ZILs while tweeting with a specific hashtag. They have recently used it in partnership with the Singapore Red Cross for a marketing campaign after their initial pilot program. It seems like a very valuable social product with a good use case. I can see a lot of traditional companies entering the space through this product, which they seem to suggest will happen. Tokenizing hashtags with smart contracts to get network effect is a very smart and innovative idea.
 
Regarding Zeeves, this is a tipping bot for Telegram. They already have 1000s of signups and they plan to keep upgrading it for more and more people to use it (e.g. they recently have added a quiz features). They also use it during AMAs to reward people in real time. It’s a very smart approach to grow their communities and get familiar with ZIL. I can see this becoming very big on Telegram. This tool suggests, again, that the Zilliqa team has a deeper understanding what the crypto space and community needs and is good at finding the right innovative tools to grow and scale.
 
To be honest, I haven’t covered everything (i’m also reaching the character limited haha). So many updates happening lately that it's hard to keep up, such as the International Monetary Fund mentioning Zilliqa in their report, custodial and non-custodial Staking, Binance Margin, Futures & Widget, entering the Indian market, and more. The Head of Marketing Colin Miles has also released this as an overview of what is coming next. And last but not least, Vitalik Buterin has been mentioning Zilliqa lately acknowledging Zilliqa and mentioning that both projects have a lot of room to grow. There is much more info of course and a good part of it has been served to you on a silver platter. I invite you to continue researching by yourself :-) And if you have any comments or questions please post here!
submitted by haveyouheardaboutit to CryptoCurrency [link] [comments]

The One Thing EVERYONE Must Know About the Dev Funding Plan: IT'S COMPLETELY FREE.

sigh I get so tired of having to stop working to put out a post explaining issues. If anyone else wants to join in I could use help. (actually I've seen Jonald F. do this before too, so thanks JF!)
Things are bad when even developers don't understand what's going on. So I'll try to clearly explain an important point on the Dev Funding Plan (DFP from now on) for the community: it's completely free. Yet we still get panicked posts saying Please Save Us from the TAX!!! Somebody Help!
You may be for or against the DFP, but either way please at least understand what you're forming an opinion on.
Let's start from the beginning. We know Bitcoin works on blocks and block coin rewards. The block reward, which started at 50 coins per block, and cuts in half approximately every 4 years, serves two purposes: it's a fair way to bring coins into circulation, but more importantly it provides security for the network.
For simplicity, please think of "security" as being measured in power bars. When the network first started, with just Satoshi and Hal Finney, there was 1 power bar. This power bar was made up of the electricity their combined computer hardware used to find blocks. They were the first miners. Bitcoin uses a difficulty level to adjust how hard or easy it is to find blocks. This level is important for a key reason: we want the inflation rate of coins (how fast they come into circulation) to stay about the same, regardless how many miners (computing power) suddenly comes online. If the difficulty is set at super easy, but suddenly a super computer comes online that computer can gobble up thousands of coins in minutes if not seconds, creating massive rapid inflation. So the first thing to understand is that due to the Difficulty Level Adjustment the rate of coins coming into circulation will always stay about the same, regardless how many miners join or leave the network.
Getting back to power bars. So the point of Bitcoin is there is no center, no fixed authority. The problem is we still need a decision made about which chain is valid. This is where proof-of-work comes in. Satoshi's fairly brilliant solution to a consensus decision, with no leader, was to simply look for the longest chain (technically the chain with most hashing work). The reasoning was: as there are far more ordinary people than there are governments and dictators a Bitcoin supported by the all the world's people should always be able to muster more hashrate than even rich governments.
So Bitcoin began and people saw the brilliance: even with a weak power bar level of 1 (a couple computers), Bitcoin was safe from 51% attacks and attacking govs competing for control of the chain because a super low hashrate meant Bitcoin wasn't popular and govs wouldn't bother paying attention. By the time Bitcoin was big enough for govs to worry about attacking it should also have so many participants the power bar level would be far higher, providing strong defense.
Let's say the ideal power bar level is 50,000. At this level no government on earth has enough resources to beat the grassroots network. We hear people brag about how much security BTC has. However, the marketcap for all of BTC is about $160B. Countries like the U.S. and China have GDP measured in many trillions; a trillion is 1,000 billion. Does 160B really seem untouchable? For numeric comparison the main U.S. federal food assistance program cost the government $70B in 2016, representing about 2% of the budget. So the entirety of the BTC market cap is about twice the size of one welfare program, representing 2% of the overall budget. Where should we place the current security power bars if we want guaranteed safety from a determined U.S. gov? If 50,000 is guaranteed safe we're far from it. I'd say BTC is more like 5,000. That's still pretty decent.
Of course, BCH split from BTC... and didn't carry over all the miners and accompanying security. That's not an immediate concern because if BTC isn't on government's radar yet BCH sure isn't. However, that doesn't mean BCH doesn't need security from hostile forces. It's still a valuable network and needs defenses. Where would we put power bars for BCH? If BTC is 5,000 and BCH only has 3% of that hashrate then BCH has just 150. That's it.
How the Developer Funding Plan Works
Back to the DFP. What this says is as a community we agree to break off a piece of the block reward and instead of giving 100% to miners we give a small percent to developers. If each block is 10 coins and the price is $300 then winning a block means winning $3,000. Of course that's not all profit because miners have electricity and other expenses to pay before calculating profit. So if we reduce the portion of the miner reward by 10% so they get just 9 coins per block yet the price stays the same what happens? It means miners receive $2,700 for the same effort. We've just made it more expensive to mine BCH from the point of view of miners. What would any miner then rationally do? Seek profitability elsewhere if available. Suddenly BTC SHA256 hashing looks slightly more attractive so they'll go there. Hashrate leaves BCH and goes to BTC, but the key important point is BOTH chains have a difficulty adjustment algorithm which adjusts to account for rising or lowering miners overall, which keeps the coin inflation rate steady. This means BTC total hashrate rises (more miners compete for BTC) and its Difficulty Level rises accordingly, so the same rate of BTC pumps out; on BCH total hashrate falls (less miners compete for BCH) and its Difficulty falls, so the same rate of BCH pumps out. Inflation remains about the same on both coins so the price of both coins doesn't change any, beyond what it normally does based on news/events etc.
So what difference is there? The difference is total network security. Hashrate totals have changed. BTC gains more miner securing hashrate while BCH loses it. So BTC goes from 5,000 to say 5,100 power bars. BCH goes from about 150 to 140.
Does any of that matter in the grand scheme of things? Not in the slightest. Part of the reason is due to our emergency circumstances with BCH we had to rework our security model. Our primary defense is an idea I came up with, which BitcoinABC implemented, saying it's not sheer hashpower that dictates what chain we follow. We won't replace a chain we're working on if a new one suddenly appears if it means changing more than 10 blocks deep of history. This prevents all the threatening hashrate hanging over our heads from mining a secret chain and creating havoc unleashing it causing 10+ confimed txs to be undone, while exchanges, gambling sites etc. have long since paid out real world money.
Switching $6M worth of block rewards from mining to devs just means we lose a bit of hashrate security, while we gain those funds for development. Nothing more. Nobody holding BCH pays in the form of inflation or any other way. It costs literally NOTHING BECAUSE The block reward is ALREADY ALLOCATED. It will EITHER go 100% to mining security if we do nothing, or go to both miners and devs if the plan is put into effect. Hopefully this helps.
:)
TL;DR: we switch security which we don't really need, for developer funding which we do.
submitted by cryptos4pz to btc [link] [comments]

[Researh] In 2017 bitcoin network consumed 5 TWh of energy, in 2018 – 29 TWh, in 2019 – 43 TWh. Banking industry consumes 74 TWh per year.

[Researh] In 2017 bitcoin network consumed 5 TWh of energy, in 2018 – 29 TWh, in 2019 – 43 TWh. Banking industry consumes 74 TWh per year.
Electricity consumed by bitcoin network has been constantly and noticeably increasing. During the past years the consumption reached such big a scale, that it can be compared to electricity consumption of some countries, according to BlockchainAnalytics.pro research.
The world’s first cryptocurrency is steadily becoming more popular and expensive every year. This motivates more individuals and companies to enter the mining business to earn a bitcoin share.

More miners, more efficient equipment

To validate a block of transactions and receive a reward, miners compete with each other by solving a deliberately complicated mathematical task, or puzzle. Those miners who own more computing power (hashrate) have more chances to win the competition. This incentivizes miners to buy more powerful equipment that consumes more electricity.
At the same time, mining equipment efficiency is constantly improving, and with time less electricity is required to produce the same hashrate. This factor allows to slow down the increasing demand for electricity.
For example, in 2016 Bitmain, world’s largest manufacturer of mining equipment, launched the legendary Antminer S9, which consumed 100 watts to produce one terahash per second, or 100 W/TH/s. The best modification of Antminer S15, released in 2018, consumed 57 W/TH/s. Currently, the most efficient Antminer S17 consumes only 40 W/TH/s.
https://preview.redd.it/gh343l3p09j41.png?width=930&format=png&auto=webp&s=e350c1e7832e37c1e3c3aeac974428cca7f0f874
It is assumed that the market competition compels manufacturers to keep up with each other in developing more efficient hardware. If some manufacturer brings next-generation chips to market, other manufacturers start to produce chips with the same characteristics at about the same time.
On the other hand, new miners are joining the network, thus increasing the hashrate. So the demand for electricity continues to grow. Also, it can be noticed later that the electricity consumption chart is similar to that of hashrate chart.
https://preview.redd.it/3k32ci6q09j41.png?width=930&format=png&auto=webp&s=e70f600419bcbc9e7e82506b5f12bf4da6f00584

Calculations

The incremental volume of electricity consumption is calculated by multiplying newly added hashrate by the best mining efficiency available at that moment.
The sum of incremental volumes represents cumulative amount of electricity consumed by bitcoin network. The metric is expressed in terawatt-hours (TWh). To get annualized volume in terawatt-hours we multiply the consumption by 24 hours and 365 days.
A 100-day moving average was applied to hashrate to make the final result less dependent on the short-term hashrate fluctuations.
Assumptions, used in this study, are very conservative. It means that the results are in the lower limit of the range of possible volumes, and the actual electricity consumption can be higher.
A detailed explanation and interactive charts are provided here: https://www.blockchainanalytics.pro/btc/electricity-consumption/
https://preview.redd.it/jol3703r09j41.png?width=929&format=png&auto=webp&s=252d4d67ff6882bb32ad63238537a41305719f05

Results

Currently, annualized electricity consumption in bitcoin network is 57 TWh. To help readers get an idea of how much electricity the bitcoin network consumes, a comparison with some countries is provided alongside.
Portugal consumes 49 TWh per year, Romania – 50 TWh, Czech Republic – 59 TWh.
Some more numbers for comparison:
https://preview.redd.it/hka7lcwr09j41.png?width=930&format=png&auto=webp&s=92d6d0b25f922a1e6f0c45c6f994e78aded6f920
According to conservative estimates, the bitcoin network will consume more than 70 TWh in 2020. This is on a par with Chile, a country with 18 million population.

More thoughts (estimations of how much energy banking industry consumes)

Some information from official reports:
Taking into account the information above, we can assume that, on average, banks spend ~20 kWh per customer per year.
Some information on world population:
  • 69% of adults around the world have a banking account (source)
  • 70% of the world population are adults (source)
  • World population is 7.7 billion (source)
Finally: 7.7 billion people * 70% * 69% * 20 kWh per year = ~74 TWh per year
So, we can assume, that banking industry consumes ~74 TWh per year
submitted by answer__42 to btc [link] [comments]

Bitcoin 11 Years - Achievements, Lies, and Bullshit Claims So Far - Tooootally NOT a SCAM !!!!

That's right folks, it's that time again for the annual review of how Bitcoin is going: all of those claims, predictions, promises .... how many have turned out to be true, and how many are completely bogus ???
Please post / link this on Bitcoin (I am banned there for speaking the truth, so I cannot do it) ... because it'a way past time those poor clueless mushrooms were exposed to the truth.
Anyway, without further ado, I give you the Bitcoin's Achievements, Lies, and Bullshit Claims So Far ...
.
Bitcoin Achievements so far:
  1. It has spawned a cesspool of scams (2000+ shit coin scams, plus 100's of other scams, frauds, cons).
  2. Many 1,000's of hacks, thefts, losses.
  3. Illegal Use Cases: illegal drugs, illegal weapons, tax fraud, money laundering, sex trafficking, child pornography, hit men / murder-for-hire, ransomware, blackmail, extortion, and various other kinds of fraud and illicit activity.
  4. Legal Use Cases: Steam Games, Reddit, Expedia, Stripe, Starbucks, 1000's of merchants, cryptocurrency conferences, Ummm ????? The few merchants who "accept Bitcoin" immediately convert it into FIAT after the sale, or require you to sell your coins to BitPay or Coinbase for real money, and will then take that money. Some of the few who actually accept bitcoin haven't seen a customer who needed to pay with bitcoin for the last six months, and their cashiers no longer know how to handle that.
  5. Contributing significantly to Global Warming.
  6. Wastes vasts amounts of electricity on useless, do nothing work.
  7. Exponentially raises electricity prices when big miners move into regions where electricity was cheap.
  8. It’s the first "currency" that is not self-sustainable. It operates at a net loss, and requires continuous outside capital to replace the capital removed by miners to pay their costs. It’s literally a "black hole currency."
  9. It created a new way for people living too far from Vegas to gamble all their life savings away.
  10. Spawned "blockchain technology", a powerful technique that lets incompetent programmers who know almost nothing about databases, finance, programming, or blockchain scam millions out of gullible VC investors, banks, and governments.
  11. Increased China's foreign trade balance by a couple billion dollars per year.
  12. Helped the FBI and other law enforcement agents easily track down hundreds of drug traffickers and drug users.
  13. Wasted thousands if not millions of man-hours of government employees and legislators, in mostly fruitless attempts to understand, legitimize, and regulate the "phenomenon", and to investigate and prosecute its scams.
  14. Rekindled the hopes of anarcho-capitalists and libertarians for a global economic collapse, that would finally bring forth their Mad Max "utopia".
  15. Added another character to Unicode (no, no, not the "poo" 💩 character ... that was my first guess as well 🤣)
  16. Provides an easy way for malware and ransomware criminals to ply their trade and extort hospitals, schools, local councils, businesses, utilities, as well as the general population.
.
Correct Predictions:
  1. 2015-12: "1,000 dollar in 2015", u/Luka_Magnotta, aka time traveler from the future, 31-Aug-2013, https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/1lfobc/i_am_a_timetraveler_from_the_future_here_to_beg/ (Technically, this prediction is WRONG because the highest price reached in 2015 was $495.56 according to CMC. Yes, Bitcoin reached $1,000 in 2013 and 2014, but that's NOT what the prediction says).
  2. 2017-12: "10,000 in 2017", u/Luka_Magnotta, aka time traveler from the future, 31-Aug-2013, https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/1lfobc/i_am_a_timetraveler_from_the_future_here_to_beg/
  3. 2018-04: $10,000 (by April 2018), Mike Novogratz, link #1: https://www.bitcoinprice.com/predictions/, link #2: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-11-21/mike-novogratz-says-bitcoin-will-end-the-year-at-10-000
  4. 2018-12: $10,000 (by 2018), Tim Draper, link #1: https://www.bitcoinprice.com/predictions/, link #2: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3AW5s6QkRRY
  5. Any others ? (Please tell me).
.
Bitcoin Promises / Claims / Price Predictions that turned out to be lies and bullshit:
  1. ANONYMOUS
  2. CENSORSHIP RESISTANT
  3. FRICTIONLESS
  4. TRUSTLESS
  5. UNCENSORABLE
  6. UNTRACEABLE
  7. SAFE
  8. SECURE
  9. YOU CANNOT LOSE
  10. NOT A SCAM
  11. PERMISSIONLESS
  12. GUARANTEED PRIVACY
  13. CANNOT BE SEIZED
  14. CANNOT BE CONFISCATED
  15. Be your own bank
  16. Regulation-proof
  17. NO MIDDLEMEN
  18. DECENTRALIZED
  19. Instantaneous transactions
  20. Fast transactions
  21. Zero / No transaction fees
  22. Low transaction fees
  23. A store of value
  24. A deflationary digital asset
  25. "A deflationary digital asset that no single human being can destroy."
  26. "an asset that is equally as dual use as a car, water, or any other traditional element that has existed."
  27. "Digital gold"
  28. Easy to use
  29. Cannot be stolen
  30. Cannot be hacked
  31. Can be mined by anyone
  32. Can be mined by anyone, even with an old computer or laptop
  33. Cannot be centralized
  34. Will return power back to the people.
  35. Not a Ponzi scam
  36. Not a Pyramid scam
  37. Never pay tax again
  38. Your gains cannot be taxed
  39. A currency
  40. An amazing new class of asset
  41. An asset
  42. A means to economic freedom
  43. A store of value
  44. The best investment the word has ever seen
  45. A great investment
  46. Efficient
  47. Scalable
  48. Stable
  49. Resilient
  50. Reliable
  51. Low energy
  52. Low risk
  53. Redistribute wealth to everybody
  54. No more have's and have not's
  55. No more US and THEM
  56. No more disadvantaged people
  57. No more RICH and POOR
  58. No more poor people
  59. Uses amazing new technology
  60. Uses ingenious new technology
  61. Satishi Nakamoto invented ...
  62. Segwit will solve all of Bitcoin's woes
  63. Lightning Network will solve all of Bitcoin's woes
  64. Limited by scarcity
  65. Can only go up in value
  66. Price cannot crash
  67. Has intrinsic value
  68. Value will always be worth more than cost to mine
  69. Adoption by investors is increasing exponentially
  70. Adoption by investors is increasing
  71. Adoption by merchants is increasing exponentially
  72. Adoption by merchants is increasing
  73. You are secure if you keep your coins on an exchange
  74. You are secure if you keep your coins in a hardware wallet
  75. You are secure if you keep your coins in an air-gapped Linux PC
  76. Will change the world
  77. "the next phase in human evolution"
  78. "Blockchain is more encompassing than the internet"
  79. Blockchain can solve previously unsolvable problems.
  80. "The only regulation we need is the blockchain"
  81. "Bank the unbanked"
  82. "To abolish financial slavery and the state's toxic monopoly on money."
  83. "To have better tools in the fight against the state violence and taxation."
  84. "To stamp information on a blockchain forever so we can bypass state censorship, copyrights, patents(informational monopolies) etc."
  85. Will destroy / overthrow FIAT
  86. Will destroy / overthrow the world's governments
  87. Will destroy / overthrow the banking system
  88. Will destroy / overthrow the world economies
  89. Will free people from tyranny
  90. Will give people financial freedom
  91. Will bring world peace
  92. Never going below $19K again
  93. Never going below $18K again
  94. Never going below $17K again
  95. Never going below $16K again
  96. Never going below $15K again
  97. Never going below $14K again
  98. Never going below $13K again
  99. Never going below $12K again
  100. Never going below $11K again
  101. Never going below $10K again
  102. Never going below $9K again
  103. Never going below $8K again
  104. Never going below $7K again
  105. Never going below $6K again
  106. Never going below $5K again
  107. Never going below $4K again
  108. Is NOT a Scam
  109. Hashing Power secures the Bitcoin network
  110. Untraceable, private transactions
  111. Guaranteed privacy
  112. Not created out of thin air
  113. Not created out of thin air by unregulated, unbacked entities
  114. Totally NOT a scam
  115. Is not used primarily by crimonals, drug dealers, or money launderers.
  116. 100% secure
  117. 2010 will be the "Year of Crypto"
  118. 2011 will be the "Year of Crypto"
  119. 2012 will be the "Year of Crypto"
  120. 2013 will be the "Year of Crypto"
  121. 2014 will be the "Year of Crypto"
  122. 2015 will be the "Year of Crypto"
  123. 2016 will be the "Year of Crypto"
  124. 2017 will be the "Year of Crypto"
  125. 2018 will be the "Year of Crypto"
  126. 2019 will be the "Year of Crypto"
  127. 2010: MASS ADOPTION any day now"
  128. 2011: MASS ADOPTION aany day now"
  129. 2012: MASS ADOPTION aaany day now"
  130. 2013: MASS ADOPTION aaaany day now"
  131. 2014: MASS ADOPTION aaaaany day now"
  132. 2015: MASS ADOPTION aaaaaany day now"
  133. 2016: MASS ADOPTION aaaaaaany day now"
  134. 2017: MASS ADOPTION aaaaaaaany day now"
  135. 2018: MASS ADOPTION aaaaaaaaany day now"
  136. 2019: MASS ADOPTION aaaaaaaaany day now"
  137. "Financial Freedom, bro."
  138. no single entity, government or individual, can alter or reverse its transactions
  139. insurance against the tyranny of state
  140. Bitcoin has come to destroy all governments and bring about the libertarian utopia of my dreams.
  141. The major issues in Bicoin's network will be fixed. This is still early days, Bitcoin has only been around for 2+ years.
  142. The major issues in Bicoin's network will be fixed. This is still early days, Bitcoin has only been around for 5+ years.
  143. The major issues in Bicoin's network will be fixed. This is still early days, Bitcoin has only been around for 7+ years.
  144. The major issues in Bicoin's network will be fixed. This is still early days, Bitcoin has only been around for 9+ years.
  145. 1,000's of predictions of skyrocketing and/or never falling prices
  146. Escape the petty rivalries of warring powers and nation states by scattering control among the many. The Bitcoin Cash debacle proves that even the most cryptographically secure plans of mice and men often go awry. Ref: https://www.reddit.com/Buttcoin/comments/9zfhb6/like_theres_only_one_flaw_with_buttcoin_crash/ea8s11m
  147. People will NEVER be able to welch out of bets or deals again. Nov-2018, Ref: https://www.reddit.com/Buttcoin/comments/9zvpl2/the_guy_who_made_the_1000_bet_that_btc_wouldnt/
  148. "Everything will be better, faster, and cheaper.", Brock Pierce, EOS.io shill video.
  149. "Everything will be more connected.", Brock Pierce, EOS.io shill video.
  150. "Everything will be more trustworthy.", Brock Pierce, EOS.io shill video.
  151. "Everything will be more secure.", Brock Pierce, EOS.io shill video.
  152. "Everything that exists is no-longer going to exist in the way that it does today.", Brock Pierce, EOS.io shill video.
  153. "Everything in this world is about to get better.", Brock Pierce, EOS.io shill video.
  154. You are a slave to the bankers
  155. The bankers print money and then you pay for it
  156. Bitcoin is The Peoples Money
  157. Bitcoin will set you free
  158. Bitcoin will set you free from the slavery of the banks and the government Ref: https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/cd2q94/bitcoin_shall_set_you_free/
  159. ~~Bitcoin is "striking fear into the hearts of bankers, precisely because Bitcoin eliminates the need for banks. ~~, Mark Yusko, billionaire investor and Founder of Morgan Creek Capital, https://www.bitcoinprice.com/predictions/
  160. "When transactions are verified on a Blockchain, banks become obsolete.", Mark Yusko, billionaire investor and Founder of Morgan Creek Capital, https://www.bitcoinprice.com/predictions/
  161. SnapshillBot quotes from delusional morons:
  162. "A bitcoin miner in every device and in every hand."
  163. "All the indicators are pointing to a huge year and bigger than anything we have seen before."
  164. "Bitcoin is communism and democracy working hand in hand."
  165. "Bitcoin is freedom, and we will soon be free."
  166. "Bitcoin isn't calculated risk, you're right. It's downright and painfully obvious that it will consume global finance."
  167. "Bitcoin most disruptive technology of last 500 years"
  168. "Bitcoin: So easy, your grandma can use it!"
  169. "Creating a 4th Branch of Government - Bitcoin"
  170. "Future generations will cry laughing reading all the negativity and insanity vomited by these permabears."
  171. "Future us will thank us."
  172. "Give Bitcoin two years"
  173. "HODLING is more like being a dutiful guardian of the most powerful economic force this planet has ever seen and getting to have a say about how that force is unleashed."
  174. "Cut out the middleman"
  175. "full control of your own assets"
  176. "reduction in wealth gap"
  177. "no inflation"
  178. "cannot print money out of thin air"
  179. "Why that matters? Because blockchain not only cheaper for them, it'll be cheaper for you and everyone as well."
  180. "If you are in this to get rich in Fiat then no. But if you are in this to protect your wealth once the current monetary system collapse then you are protected and you'll be the new rich."
  181. "Theres the 1% and then theres the 99%. You want to be with the rest thats fine. Being different and brave is far more rewarding. No matter your background or education."
  182. "NO COINERS will believe anything they are fed by fake news and paid media."
  183. "I know that feeling (like people looking at you as in seeing a celebrity and then asking things they don't believe until their impressed)."
  184. "I literally walk round everyday looking at other people wondering why they even bother to live if they don't have Bitcoin in their lives."
  185. "I think bitcoin may very well be the best form of money we’ve ever seen in the history of civilization."
  186. "I think Bitcoin will do for mankind what the sun did for life on earth."
  187. "I think the constant scams and illegal activities only show the viability of bitcoin."
  188. "I think we're sitting on the verge of exponential interest in the currency."
  189. "I'm not using hyperbole when I say Satoshi found the elusive key to World Peace."
  190. "If Jesus ever comes back you know he's gonna be using Bitcoin"
  191. "If this idea was implemented with The Blockchain™, it would be completely flawless! Flawless I tell you!"
  192. "If you're the minimum wage guy type, now is a great time to skip food and go full ramadan in order to buy bitcoin instead."
  193. "In a world slipping more and more into chaos and uncertainty, Bitcoin seems to me like the last solid rock defeating all the attacks."
  194. "In this moment, I am euphoric. Not because of any filthy statist's blessing, but because I am enlightened by own intelligence."
  195. "Is Bitcoin at this point, with all the potential that opens up, the most undervalued asset ever?"
  196. "It won't be long until bitcoin is an everyday household term."
  197. "It's the USD that is volatile. Bitcoin is the real neutral currency."
  198. "Just like the early Internet!"
  199. "Just like the Trojan Horse of old, Bitcoin will reveal its full power and nature"
  200. "Ladies if your man doesnt have some bitcoin then he cant handle anything and has no danger sex appeal. He isnt edgy"
  201. "let me be the first to say if you dont have bitcoin you are a pussy and cant really purchase anything worldwide. You have no global reach"
  202. "My conclusion is that I see this a a very good thing for bitcoin and for users"
  203. "No one would do such a thing; it'd be against their self interests."
  204. "Ooh lala, good job on bashing Bitcoin. How to disrespect a great innovation."
  205. "Realistically I think Bitcoin will replace the dollar in the next 10-15 years."
  206. "Seperation of money and state -> states become obsolete -> world peace."
  207. "Some striking similarities between Bitcoin and God"
  208. "THANK YOU. Better for this child to be strangled in its crib as a true weapon for crypto-anarchists than for it to be wielded by toxic individuals who distort the technology and surrender it to government and corporate powers."
  209. "The Blockchain is more encompassing than the internet and is the next phase in human evolution. To avoid its significance is complete ignorance."
  210. "The bull run should begin any day now."
  211. "The free market doesn't permit fraud and theft."
  212. "The free market will clear away the bad actors."
  213. "The only regulation we need is the blockchain."
  214. "We are not your slaves! We are free bodies who will swallow you and puke you out in disgust. Welcome to liberty land or as that genius called it: Bitcoin."
  215. "We do not need the bankers for Satoshi is our saviour!"
  216. "We have never seen something so perfect"
  217. "We must bring freedom and crypto to the masses, to the common man who does not know how to fight for himself."
  218. "We verified that against the blockchain."
  219. "we will see a Rennaisnce over the next few decades, all thanks to Bitcoin."
  220. "Well, since 2006, there has been a infinite% increase in price, so..."
  221. "What doesn't kill cryptocurrency makes it stronger."
  222. "When Bitcoin awake in normally people (real people) ... you will have this result : No War. No Tax. No QE. No Bank."
  223. "When I see news that the price of bitcoin has tanked (and thus the market, more or less) I actually, for-real, have the gut reaction "oh that’s cool, I’ll be buying cheap this week". I never knew I could be so rational."
  224. "Where is your sense of adventure? Bitcoin is the future. Set aside your fears and leave easier at the doorstep."
  225. "Yes Bitcoin will cause the greatest redistribution of wealth this planet has ever seen. FACT from the future."
  226. "You are the true Bitcoin pioneers and with your help we have imprinted Bitcoin in the Canadian conscience."
  227. "You ever try LSD? Perhaps it would help you break free from the box of state-formed thinking you have limited yourself..."
  228. "Your phone or refrigerator might be on the blockchain one day."
  229. The banks can print money whenever they way, out of thin air, so why can't crypto do the same ???
  230. Central Banks can print money whenever they way, out of thin air, without any consequences or accounting, so why can't crypto do the same ???
  231. It's impossible to hide illegal, unsavory material on the blockchain
  232. It's impossible to hide child pornography on the blockchain
  233. Fungible
  234. All Bitccoins are the same, 100% identical, one Bitcoin cannot be distinguished from any other Bitcoin.
  235. The price of Bitcoin can only go up.
  236. "Bubbles are mathematically impossible in this new paradigm. So are corrections and all else", John McAfee, 7 Dec 2017 @ 5:09 PM,https://mobile.twitter.com/officialmcafee/status/938938539282190337
  237. Scarcity
  238. The price of Bitcoin can only go up because of scarcity / 21 million coin limit. (Bitcoin is open source, anyone can create thir own copy, and there are more than 2,000+ Bitcoin copies / clones out there already).
  239. immune to government regulation
  240. "a world-changing technology"
  241. "a long-term store of value, like gold or silver"
  242. "To Complex to Be Audited."
  243. "Old Auditing rules do not apply to Blockchain."
  244. "Old Auditing rules do not apply to Cryptocurrency."
  245. "Why Bitcoin has Value: SCARCITY.", PlanB, Coin Shill, 22-Mar-2019, https://medium.com/@100trillionUSD/modeling-bitcoins-value-with-scarcity-91fa0fc03e25
  246. "Bitcoin is the first scarce digital object the world has ever seen, it is scarce like silver & gold, and can be sent over the internet, radio, satellite etc.", PlanB, Coin Shill, 22-Mar-2019, https://medium.com/@100trillionUSD/modeling-bitcoins-value-with-scarcity-91fa0fc03e25
  247. "Surely this digital scarcity has value.", PlanB, Coin Shill, 22-Mar-2019, https://medium.com/@100trillionUSD/modeling-bitcoins-value-with-scarcity-91fa0fc03e25
  248. Bitcoin now at $16,600.00. Those of you in the old school who believe this is a bubble simply have not understood the new mathematics of the Blockchain, or you did not cared enough to try. Bubbles are mathematically impossible in this new paradigm. So are corrections and all else", John McAfee, 7 Dec 2017 @ 5:09 PM,https://mobile.twitter.com/officialmcafee/status/938938539282190337
  249. "May 2018 will be the last time we ever see $bitcoin under $10,000", Charlie Shrem, bitcoin advocate and convicted felon, 11:31 AM 3-May-2018, https://twitter.com/CharlieShrem/status/992109375555858433
  250. "Last dip ever.", AngeloBTC, 14 Oct 2018, https://mobile.twitter.com/AngeloBTC/status/1051710824388030464/photo/1
  251. "Bitcoin May Have Just Experienced its Final Shakeout Before a Big Rally", Joseph Young, coin shill, October 15, 2018 22:30 CET, https://www.ccn.com/bitcoin-may-have-just-experienced-its-final-shakeout-before-a-big-rally/
  252. Bitcoin would be a buy if the price fell under $5,000., Mohamed El-Erian, chief economic advisor at Allianz, 29-Jun-2018, https://www.ccn.com/bitcoin-a-buy-below-5000-says-allianz-chief-economic-adviso
  253. 2013-11-27: ""What is a Citadel?" you might wonder. Well, by the time Bitcoin became worth 1,000 dollar [27-Nov-2013], services began to emerge for the "Bitcoin rich" to protect themselves as well as their wealth. It started with expensive safes, then began to include bodyguards, and today, "earlies" (our term for early adapters), as well as those rich whose wealth survived the "transition" live in isolated gated cities called Citadels, where most work is automated. Most such Citadels are born out of the fortification used to protect places where Bitcoin mining machines are located. The company known as ASICminer to you is known to me as a city where Mr. Friedman rules as a king.", u/Luka_Magnotta, aka time traveler from the future, 31-Aug-2013, https://www.reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/1lfobc/i_am_a_timetraveler_from_the_future_here_to_beg/
  254. 2018-02: Bitcoin price to hit $27,000 by February 2018, Trace Mayer, host of the Bitcoin Knowledge Podcast, and self-proclaimed entrepreneur, investor, journalist, monetary scientist and ardent defender, Link #1: https://mobile.twitter.com/TraceMayestatus/917260836070154240/photo/1, Link #2: https://www.bitcoinprice.com/predictions/
  255. 2018-06: "Bitcoin will surpass $15,000 in June [2018]." John McAfee, May 25, 2018, https://bitcoinist.com/john-mcafee-says-bitcoin-will-surpass-15000-in-june/
  256. 2018-07: Bitcoin will be $28,000 by mid-2018, Ronnie Moas, Wall Street analyst and founder of Standpoint Research, http://helpfordream.com/2018/12/23/5-bitcoin-price-predictions-gone-wrong/.
  257. 2018-12: Bitcoin to reach a price of between 40,000 and 110,000 US dollars by the end of the 2017 bull run ... sometime before 2019, Masterluc, 26-May-2017, an anonymous "legendary" Bitcoin trader, Link #1: https://www.tradingview.com/chart/BTCUSD/YRZvdurN-The-target-of-current-bubble-lays-between-40k-and-110k/, Link #2: https://www.bitcoinprice.com/predictions/
  258. 2018-12: "There is no reason why we couldn’t see Bitcoin pushing $50,000 by December [2018]", Thomas Glucksmann, head of APAC business at Gatecoin, Link #1: https://www.bitcoinprice.com/predictions/
  259. 2018-12: Listen up you giggling cunts... who wants some?...you? you want some?...huh? Do ya? Here's the deal you fuckin Nerds - Butts are gonna be at 30 grand or more by next Christmas [2018] - If they aren't I will publicly administer an electronic dick sucking to every shill on this site and disappear forever - Until then, no more bans or shadow bans - Do we have a deal? If Butts are over 50 grand me and Lammy get to be mods. Deal? Your ole pal - "Skully" u/10GDeathBoner, 3-Feb-2018 https://www.reddit.com/Buttcoin/comments/7ut1ut/listen_up_you_giggling_cunts_who_wants_someyou/
  260. 2018-12: 1 bitcoin = 1 Lambo. Remind me on Christmas eve [2018] u/10GDeathBoner, 3-Feb-2018, https://www.reddit.com/Buttcoin/comments/7ut1ut/listen_up_you_giggling_cunts_who_wants_someyou/dtn2pna
  261. 2018-12: Been in BTC since 2014 and experienced many "deaths" of BTC... this too shall pass... $10k end of the year. [2018] u/Exxe2502, 30-Jun-2018 https://reddit.com/Bitcoin/comments/8uur27/_/e1ioi5b/?context=1
  262. 2018-12: "Yale Alumni prediction - 30 Grand by Christmas [2018] - and you my friend... you will be the one eating Mcafee's dick in 2020. :) -:", u/SirNakamoto, 15-Jun-2018, https://www.reddit.com/Buttcoin/comments/8r0tyh/fdic_agrees_to_cover_bitcoin_losses_in_event_of/e0nzxq7
  263. 2018-12: "Impossible For Bitcoin Not to Hit $10,000 by This Year (2018)", Mike Novogratz, a former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. partner, ex-hedge fund manager of the Fortress Investment Group and a longstanding advocate of cryptocurrency, 22-Sep-2018, https://www.newsbtc.com/2018/09/22/billionaire-novogratz-impossible-for-bitcoin-not-to-hit-10000-by-this-yea
  264. 2018-12: "[Bitcoin] between $13,800 and $14,800 [by end of 2018]", Fundstrat's Tom Lee, 13-Dec-2018, https://www.cnbc.com/2018/12/13/wall-streets-bitcoin-bull-tom-lee-we-are-tired-of-people-asking-us-about-target-prices.html
  265. 2018-12: "Bitcoin is going to be $15k-$20k by the end of the year (2018)", Didi Taihuttu, 1-Nov-2018, https://www.wsj.com/video/series/moving-upstream/the-bitcoin-gamble/85E3A4A7-C777-4827-9A3F-B387F2AB7654
  266. 2018-12: 2018 bitcoin price prediction reduced to $15,000 [was $25,000], Fundstrat's Tom Lee, 16-Nov-2018, https://www.cnbc.com/2018/11/16/wall-streets-crypto-bull-tom-lee-slashes-year-end-forecast-by-10000.html
  267. 2018-12: "I want to be clear, bitcoin is going to $25,000 by year end (2018)", Fundstrat's Tom Lee, 5-Jul-2018, https://www.cnbc.com/video/2018/07/05/tom-lee-i-want-to-be-clear-bitcoin-is-going-to-25000-by-year-end.html
  268. 2018-12: "Bitcoin could be at $40,000 by the end of 2018, it really easily could", Mike Novogratz, a former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. partner, ex-hedge fund manager of the Fortress Investment Group and a longstanding advocate of cryptocurrency, 21-Sep-2018, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6lC1anDg2KU
  269. 2018-12: "Bitcoin will be priced around $50,000 by the end of the year (2018)", Bitcoin bull Arthur Hayes, co-founder and CEO of BitMEX, 29-Jun-2018, https://www.cnbc.com/2018/06/29/bitcoin-will-reach-50000-in-2018-says-founder-of-bitcoin-exchange.html
  270. 2018-12: "Bitcoin could definitely see $50,000 in 2018", Jeet Singh, cryptocurrency portfolio manager, speaking in January 2018 at the World Economic Forum in Davos, https://www.dcforecasts.com/new-prediction-says-bitcoin-hit-50000-2018/
  271. 2018-12: "Bitcoin will hit $100,000 this year (2018)", Kay Van-Petersen, an analyst at Saxo Bank, 17-Jan-2018, https://www.cnbc.com/2018/01/16/bitcoin-headed-to-100000-in-2018-analyst-who-forecast-2017-price-move.html
  272. 2018-12: "Bitcoin price to surpass the $100,000 mark by the end of 2018", Tone Vays, 21-Sep-2017, https://www.ccn.com/prominent-bitcoin-trader-price-is-heading-towards-100000-in-2018/
  273. 2018-12: "Bitcoin’s Price Will Surpass the $100,000 Mark by the End of 2018", Anonymous ("author" obviously too embarrassed to put his name to such bullshit "articles"), Oct-2018, https://investingpr.com/bitcoin-price-predictions-for-2018/
  274. 2018-12: "Our [2018] year-end bitcoin target is $7700.", James Stefurak, Founder at Monarch Research. See article: "Experts Forecast Bitcoin will rise by 2019", REF: https://hackernoon.com/experts-forecast-bitcoin-will-rise-by-2019-f4af8807036b?gi=dfea3c30d6d8
  275. 2018-12: "... we’ll see the price rally reaching its all-time of high of around $20K before the end of 2018", Khaled Khorshid, Co-Founder at Treon ICO. See article: "Experts Forecast Bitcoin will rise by 2019", REF: https://hackernoon.com/experts-forecast-bitcoin-will-rise-by-2019-f4af8807036b?gi=dfea3c30d6d8
  276. 2018-12: Bitcoin will end 2018 at the price point of $50,000, Ran Neuner, host of CNBC’s show Cryptotrader and the 28th most influential Blockchain insider according to Richtopia,https://www.bitcoinprice.com/predictions/
  277. Plus a whole host of wrong 2019 predictions (could not be included here because of post character limit issues), so please see my earlier post from 4 days ago: Ummm, remember those "Expert" Bitcoin Price Predictions for 2019 ..... ohhhhh dear ....., https://www.reddit.com/Buttcoin/comments/eiqhq3/ummm_remember_those_expert_bitcoin_price/
.
But it's NOT all bad news, some claims and promises are yet to be determined:
  1. Never going below $3K again
  2. Never going below $2K again
  3. Never going below $1K again
  4. Any others ? Please let me know.
submitted by Crypto_To_The_Core to Buttcoin [link] [comments]

What you should know about the bitcoin halving

What you should know about the bitcoin halving
https://preview.redd.it/wl6l09melkv41.png?width=1025&format=png&auto=webp&s=67a72ac734ae8dc39452143ac9c4ec5d58c34eac
Whether you’re a crypto faithful or just a passer-by who happened to notice a bitcoin headline, you’ve likely come across the halving.
The roughly quadrennial event is arguably an important one in the progression of the bitcoin network. For all the adjustments and changes to bitcoin’s code since its launch – and the evolution of the ecosystem and industry around it – the issuance cycle and bitcoin’s predetermined supply have never been altered.
The halving is, perhaps, emblematic of both bitcoin’s philosophical basis as well as its technical progression. It’s also a heck of a lot of fun, with past halvings inspiring celebrations and watch-parties for those counting down each block until the halving officially kicks in.
So, let’s get into it.

What is the bitcoin halving?

First, some basics. Each bitcoin block brings three things with it: transactions, newly-created bitcoins and fees.
For example, block number 625875 included 1,478 transactions worth 4899.23684782 BTC. The block was created by BTC.com. In exchange for making that block, BTC.com earned 12.5 BTC and 0.08439752 BTC in fees.
When bitcoin first launched, each block had a subsidy of 50 BTC. In 2012, that amount fell to 25 BTC per block, and in 2016 it was further reduced to 12.5 BTC per block. With upcoming halving – currently estimated to take place in or around May 12, when the network hits its 630,000th block – that amount will drop to 6.25 BTC per block.
To date, roughly 18.3 million bitcoins have been minted out of a total of 21 million that will ever be created.

Wait, what’s a miner?

Miners create the blocks of transactions that make sending BTC throughout the distributed bitcoin network possible. They append new blocks to the ever-growing chain – that’s the blockchain – and are rewarded with new bitcoins for doing so.
To create block 625875, BTC.com ran its miners and sought to be the first to create the next block. Mining is resource-intensive by design, and while some have described the process as an effort to solve a complex mathematical problem, a more apt description might be that miners rapidly try forming different numbers until they land on the right one.
Mining is a key element of Bitcoin’s security. As more blocks are added, it becomes more difficult to rewind the transactional clock and undo transactions from earlier blocks.
The generation of new BTC is how miners make money; their profits come from the sale price minus the cost of electricity, labor and everything else it takes to keep their legions of mining machines humming. The block reward is also the bedrock incentive for miners to keep the block production process – and, as a result, the transaction history – honest. By getting paid in bitcoin, they have an interest in seeing its price stay steady. A transaction history prone to manipulation or tampering would have no value.
The cycle of block reward or subsidy halvings is baked into bitcoin’s code. The reward reduction underpins bitcoin’s controlled supply, serving as a kind of digital parallel to finite natural resources.
So miners create new bitcoins, and with the halving, they’ll create fewer new bitcoins.
Yes. As The Block highlighted on Monday, miners currently make an estimated $13.4 million per day in new bitcoin and fees. Once the halving kicks in, that’ll drop to about $6.7 million total in the even that prices remain steady.
Of course, that number may very well fluctuate depending on the market reaction in the hours, days, weeks and months ahead. For a deeper look, check out The Block’s Larry Cermak by-the-charts column on the halving published on Monday.
I heard that the price is going to go up with the halving. Is that true?
Much digital ink has been spilled in recent months on the question of whether bitcoin’s price will rise as a result of the halving.
There are varying theories as to why: the halving will bring new market entrants, the tightening of issuance will spur more buying, or history will basically repeat itself. For example, bitcoin’s price rose above $1,000 a year after its 2012 halving. The July 2016 halving saw bitcoin’s price around $660 – a year later, the price had soared above $2,000.
But those were, arguably, different times, and next month’s halving is the first to occur after the parabolic craziness of early 2018.
A price increase isn’t a foregone conclusion – though, to be sure, neither is a drop or a continuation of the status quo.
Okay…so the number isn’t going up?
Nobody knows. And this isn’t investment advice, so quit asking me.

Who will be affected by this?

One can expect that major portions of the bitcoin-facing industry could be impacted in one way or another.
As noted above, miners will see the primary element of their income – new bitcoins – be cut in half. That’s bad news for miners who are operating older, less efficient hardware or borrowed significant sums of money to get new equipment – especially those hit by the recent turbulence in crypto markets. Bitcoin’s hash rate – a measure of the network’s computational power – could slip as some operations find themselves unable to make a profit and thus are forced to power down.
Exchanges will be affected because they’ll be front-and-center for any market response. It could prove to be a boon for exchanges as they’ll arguably be in the best position to benefit from any positive market moves.

Where can I watch the halving take place?

The best vantage point would a block explorer, where live updates for new transaction blocks can be found.
Given that the vast majority of countries are currently in the midst of social distancing because of the coronavirus pandemic, it’s unlikely that in-person parties will be held.
But with everyone stuck at home, it’s virtually certain that those with a stake or interest in crypto will be online – from Twitter to Telegram to IRC – waiting for the third-ever bitcoin reward halving to take place.
Written By: Ben
Edited By: Mosun
Graphics By: Jacobite
submitted by Telos4africa to u/Telos4africa [link] [comments]

George Kikvadze [Bitfury]: "Large Bitcoin holders wanting to "put bitcoins" to work PM me. Our 15PH Box is ready. Help decentralize & mint btc. Only serious inq. pls"

George Kikvadze [Bitfury]: submitted by a56fg4bjgm345 to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

PoW & PoS...

A Proof-of-Work (PoW) is a piece of data which is costly to produce, so as to satisfy certain requirements, but is trivial to verify. Bitcoin uses the Hashcash PoW. Mining, the process of producing PoW, plays a central role in creating, distributing, and securing Bitcoin and many of its variants. The most common criticism of PoW mining is its massive waste of energy. At the time of writing, the total daily revenue of mining Bitcoin is around $1.8 milion USD. Depending on the aggregate profit margin and the fraction of overall cost that electricity accounts for, we estimate the daily total electricity cost between $200k and $500k USD. In addition to this wastefulness, there are several more reasons why mining remains a very controversial aspect of PoW cryptocurrencies.
Proof-of-Stake is an alternative to Pow, where based on connectivity to the network and random chance, you can receive new coins to assist in the decentralization of the network. One useful feature of Proof-of-Stake is the significant savings in energy consumption in that it requires no dedicated hardware and negligible amounts of electricity to reward miners, and in many cases is far more resilient to a 51% attack on the network. (Blackcoin Core Team 2016)
submitted by KahshCoin to u/KahshCoin [link] [comments]

Looks like the 21 Bitcoin Computers have started shipping!

Looks like the 21 Bitcoin Computers have started shipping! submitted by perspiration99 to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

Rise and Fall Part 9

Part 8 (has access to parts 1-7 in it)
For some reason it would not post the last day or so.
It is early 2017. I have been carrying on my usual playing 10-20 hours a week to survive. Still lethargic is best term I suppose. I just dont get excited to play anymore. I consider getting a job to remind me how shitty working is so it gives me a kick in the teeth to play poker. Then it dawns on me, I hate playing poker now.
Poker has been tainted. Everything bad that happened to me I can associate with poker. The rise and fall was poker (the fall part). The oxycontin started as a performance enhancer to log more hours. Everything I consider to be wrong in my life I trace back to poker essentially, even if just a butterfly affect reason that had I done something else I wouldnt be here.
Hating poker is not the greatest realization considering its my only means to income outside of grunt labor. I seek a job in a couple places to no avail which was fine, I didnt wanna do that either.
Several months earlier I had started playing on SWC (bitcoin site) and became familiarized with bitcoin. Thought nothing of it, it was just the currency I was winning or losing. I dont read a thing about it, I learn nothing of it. I wasnt playing a ton or even big stakes, my intention for playing online was to just stay sharp in case it ever comes back full fledge. I have 5-6 btc on this site at the most (2-3k) and I flush it playing plo and big o not thinking much of it.
Back to 2017. Its March/April~ of 2017. I am playing cards one night dicking around probably had a couple drinks and was needling the usuals etc. A guy I do not know is in the game. Looks Russian. I bet he interfered in our election... fucking commies. I dont remember how I got to talking to him but crypto had been brought up. I talk about SWC. Tell him I had a few btc but not anymore. The only other thing I remember well from the conversation was bitching about going from an iphone4 (yes I had an iphone4 from 2010-17, the same one. It barely worked. Many oxycontins snorted off the back of that phone, texts dating back to when I got it in 2010) to the 6 or 7 or wtfever I have now, which is bigger and its harder to text and drive. He just responds by saying “first world problems are the worst”. Amen brother, those Africans and Venezuelans have no clue of our struggle.
I end up talking to him a bit and it turns out he mines crypto. Has a website that sells mining equipment. He has a hell of a back story too. I tell him I am interested in mining. I have about 20k to my name at this time and I realized recently that I dont like playing poker so why not? He eventually tells me not to do it. Regardless we become friends and he is ultimately the most important friend I have ever made. I have made more positive strides mentally since meeting him (mostly work ethic, realizations, reality checks and aspirations) As silly as it sounds, when he told me “first world problems are the worst” it stuck with me. He was saying it as a joke but jokes are funniest when true. He is genuinely the smartest guy I have ever associated with also. If you run into him at a poker table youd think he was a high functioning autist. Then you talk to him and go “ohhh hes just one of those Einstein type geniuses”. His hair is usually a mess, he cuts his own hair for or has his girlfriend do it. He wears cheap clothing usually since it all covers your ass or nipples I suppose. He virtually never instigates conversation with people he doesnt know. He is really deliberate with his actions. Talks really calmly and knows exactly what he is saying. He is just on the same level at all times it seems.
Meeting him has definitely changed my life for the better. We become friends pretty quickly. I know I went on a downer after meeting him because I couldnt afford to buy mining stuff and remember wanting to (again, he told me not to do it eventually anyways).
Which will lead me to another good friend to have. Between 2015 and this point in 2017 I have shot myself in the foot not logging hours a couple times. A friend has bailed me out with a loan or short term stake a few times. He is a well off restaurant owner who loves poker more than just about anything not related to him. Every time I see him we talk about hands he played and he just eats it up, has photographic memory and never butchers a hand history which is nice. He is as good hearted of a guy as I have ever met. (Sorry if this is getting long winded giving praise to people close to me, I intend on sharing with a few people and would like them to know what they mean to me as corny as that is because I suck at doing it in real life. Plus it is kinda gay to get mushy sounding in real life, but I digress. Theyve heard virtually none of the content of this whole thread either, a ton of this stuff I have never shared) In fact he is too kind hearted. He has helped people who wouldnt piss on him if he was on fire, and people have burned him on many occasions. My only complaint about this person is he never kicked my ass and told me to log more hours or fuck off. I needed it. If I just logged hours I wouldnt need the help. Its as simple as that. I have no leaks other than the unwillingness to play (leaks as in drugs/pit games/strippers/wtf ever else) and it has hindered me immensely over the these last couple years. (Ok I do have one embarrassing leak that has been fixed for a year and change, mobile games... I have spent like 30,000$ on mobile games between late 2016 and late 2018, Lords Mobile specifically clocked me for 20k. This definitely hindered my ability to build a roll and got me into a few jams. When youre not logging hours playing youre sitting around gaming and these games arent cheap obviously)
It is around May now and my friend who messes with crypto tells me that Bitcoin is going to 10,000$. Its like 800$ at the time iirc. I own a couple from Ignition cashouts. I kind of trust him. I cant argue him on it as I have literally no mental fortitude on the subject, but I essentially shrug it off. I start watching the price on poloniex and am watching prices jump like crazy. Light bulb in head! I can buy the dips sell the peaks and have more BTC! Lets load the 2.5btc I have onto poloniex! Sell peak but it keeps climbing... “FUCK! gotta get it back before it goes to 10k! Whew. Still have 2.45 BTC. FUCK! Its dropping! Get it out before it goes to zero!”
Yea I turned that 2.5 BTC into .4 BTC. No joke. I think I ended up throwing it onto SWC and losing it once it was almost gone. I honestly forget. I had nothing when it finally hit 20k other than some shit alts worth about 800$ at most (worth 35$ now but they still reside in my locked poloniex account, maybe I will give poloniex my ID if they ever become worth more than 1k)
So I am now annoyed I didnt turn every free dollar I had into BTC. I didnt trust the guy enough and to be fair I would have been using the money I play with. Had I met the guy a year earlier (know what I know of him now) I would probably have just locked it all up and sat around waiting.
I never really get my act together in 2017. I continuously log just enough hours to get by. I just dont care. I just want a way out of this. I catch myself saying “I hate playing poker” and sometime around the end of 17 or early 2018 I start trying to censor myself and quit saying that. Saying it will only make it fester deeper. I have to retrain myself to love poker. I remember the days of playing 18-24 hours straight because I love playing. I love watching for everything I can find to get an edge. I love a situation to present itself where I can step out of line. But now I just sit down and count the minutes before I can tell myself “way to go! You put in an 8 hour shift lets pack it in!” I leave good games often times. I celebrate when games break. This is where I am mentally while I play. I cant break out of it.
Late in 2017 a close friend of mine passes away. Will call him J. He was the guy who gave me a place to stay after the shutdown in Joplin. I was still doing oxy and he never once touched the stuff knowing what has happened to me. He doesnt judge me, he is somewhat of an enabler I suppose. He just drinks does shitty coke sometimes and has a script of adderol and xanax. Literally never once does he do any with me (ive warned him xanax and opiates will kill you if you mix, which is likely part of the reason he never did it) He was a marginal poker player (relative to modern game, he was just good enough to beat the rake live but he had too many pit leaks) and took great pride in being my friend (I was the slayer in the area for years leading up to this, anyone considered the best in their area can relate, you just have the respect of the local poker community). One of my earlier live poker memories involved him. I am like 18 or 19 playing a 1-2 game at a small casino and he was there with a friend. They were the good players in the game at the time. They were having a few drinks eating nice food and laughing having a good time. I remember thinking that I want this lifestyle. Care free gambling fast paced lifestyle. I had told him this story years later and he just ate it up, constantly tried to get me to rebound, but as I have stated many many times in the last few of these I have basically waved my white flag and accepted the result of my fall.
Anyhow after living with him we always talk every few months at minimal and have something to eat when we see each other at the casino. He was somewhat disingenuous sounding he was so nice and honestly it got to a point it started rubbing me the wrong way. I still talk to him of course but less frequently. In December of 2017 I get a phone call from my friend who owns the restaurant and he is distraught. He has been at the hospital and J has passed away. The back story on this is he had gotten a phone call from old friend who was getting out of prison in Arizona with no where to go (a female). J being as nice a guy as he is drives the 20+ hours to get her and gives her a place to stay. Well shes a junky and actually convinces J to do opiates/heroin. He overdoses and dies. I hadnt talked to him in a few months. I regret it. Had I known I would have beaten him senseless and got him to quit before things actually get bad.
Going to his funeral hit me up side the head too. The way I started feeling he was disingenuous just got destroyed. I cant fathom as many people showing up to my funeral with as nice of things to say. I wrote something to say but opt out after a few people say everything I had written (except better). I regret not saying them anyways. I think I still have what I wrote tucked away with the card and his money clip that made its way to me. I stumbled across his casino players card in a box one day and it resides in my wallet ever since. This was the first close friend that has passed away in my life, knock on wood. It woke me up a bit and caused a lot of self reflection because I felt I had let him down. I lived a few miles from him and didnt drop in to see him, didnt stay in contact as well as I should have. All because I felt he was disingenuously nice when he was actually just nice, which is actually because I am a cynical hermit who hates social life these days. That was the real reason I didnt stay closer. Him being too nice was just my excuse to blow him off essentially.
Only other thing I can add is that chick he helped out didnt even go to his funeral and on top of that had tried to take his truck and clean his house out. Junkies are the worst. I was a junky but I proudly say I never robbed anyone or cost anyone anything other than emotional distress, which isnt much of a brag obviously.
2018 starts and I have been decreasing my methadone every week for about 3-4 months now. I am on a low dose. Makes sleeping at night hard (get restless legs and sneezy). So I am having a few drinks any time I am at the casino playing (still just two days a week for the most part) to help get through those late night sessions when its worn off and I feel crummy. I get down to 15mg then 10mg and in March of 2018 I get asked if I wanna work for a week with my crypto friend. His friend is setting up a farm with 500 miners and needs help. I agree. The pay is in excess of the work (in my opinion) at 3k and I have no expenses, but I dont argue obviously. Before we leave town I have to pick up my week of methadone (at 4mg now) and so I do that. I never take any of them, I have the box still. Never opened it. They remain at my apartment as a reminder, the box carrying the 6 doses and a stack of receipts for every 75$ week that I kept in the box, several years worth, at least 9-10k worth of receipts, and that shits CHEAP compared to oxy. So I am finally off of opiates. I take kratom still but its essentially non addictive in comparison. Ill cede that I am reliant on kratom but if it disappeared tomorrow I wouldnt panic, I would be fine.
So I fly to Denver with my friend and meet his friends half brother who was instructed to rent a box truck and the three of us were to drive from Denver to Washington carrying like half a million dollars worth of hardware. Its early March, the roads arent exactly great. Half brother of his friend rents a truck with no middle seat though. Its absolutely miserable. Whoever sat middle was sitting like a fem boy legs closed and knees up high from the drive shaft hump. It was un fucking real how uncomfortable the middle was. So like I stated the roads were not great, we drove on ice for 5-6 hours straight (while my crypto friend did about 30 minutes of it before I decided I value my life and banned him from driving, he was literally doing over 70 on this ice sheet when I checked the gauge. I forget what he said, I will fail to make it sound as good but he said that he is protected and can not die, if we wreck he wont get hurt because of some universe stipulation that protects him. He said we would get hurt but he wouldnt. *** Ok here is what he said.
“quantum immortality. if i die in this universe, my conciousness will shift to others where i am still alive”
He just couldnt assure us ours would.
I end up driving like 18 of the 24 (one shot) hours it took as letting crypto friend drive was out. We make it set up a farm over a couple days then we go to Vegas. Not only do we go to Vegas but we fly a private jet. Not only do we take a private jet but his buddy has all four of us our own room at the Bellagio for 5-6 days. I remember having a 4500$ win at Bellagios 500$ cap 2-5 game... ran pretty salty. I only remember one hand worth bringing up, but I closed action and called 400$ pre with 67o with 3 others all in. Just flop 77X and send me the money. (Was drinking, gamble gamble). I cold called that also, some fish had opened massive and a 300$ stack just ripped a 400$ stack rejammed and I had called out of bb knowing fish will call off his 400~. This is actually a leak I have in poker. I will go over it because it has history.
Dating back to online my biggest leak was playing vs short stacks. Everyones biggest leak obv (6m setting). There were a few min buyers on Carbon and I got to the point I put them in pre every time they opened my bb from button, so long as they opened 75%+ from button or close to it. This has carried with me live, if I can gamble 3-4 ways (4 specifically) I will basically do it any time its 100bb~ or less with about 40% of hands if I can close action safely. I am a bit of a degenerate in this sense. I will flip for 1k if I have 10k to my name. It mostly came as a way to loosen up tables (the flipping blind preflop) at my local casino with players who give action. I am pretty snug in general but I cant refuse a flip when it presents itself and I cant refuse a fun gamble with short stacks.
I spend the month in Vegas during WSOP and run absurdly bad. Lose every big pot I play it seems. Switch to PLO the last half of the month and go a week straight without tripling my buy in up at any point. Just insane. Looking back I play rather poorly in PLO. I have been spoiled with my PLO games back home (which have been dead for about a year) and could get away with playing 50% of hands and no one ever bet big draws or anything not the nuts basically. I didnt adjust at all is what the issue was. Was just a frustrating month.
So I return and take a stake from a friend. I barely play still. Same ole same ole.
The last thing I will cover for this section is an incident late in 2018. One of the girls who is the floor at my local casino takes kratom also, we talk about it a fair amount. She has some 10mg percocets (mini oxycontins essentially) she gives me two of them. I havent had one in several years. I have been off methadone for 6-8 months at the time. I am eager to feel what I felt all those years ago, having no tolerance. So I take them home even though I know I shouldnt.
I get home and take both of them. What transpires is almost depressing. It frustrates me to no end that I realized that I have no desire for these. It affirms that all the money I flushed wasnt about the high, it was about the not withdrawing. I basically stated this in an earlier post but this is the event that I learned this from. I dont even enjoy it. I just sink knowing that I gave my life away for these. I have never recovered thanks to pain killers. Never once after 2011 have I ever looked in the mirror and said “finally, I have finally recovered what I fucked off”.
I am going to finish this thread off on the next post most likely. It will likely be long and take me a while to compose as it will cover my current year, and put a bow on it. The story basically climaxes a couple posts back, these surely have slowly lost their luster but I will finish them anyways. Nothing exciting about hearing about a guy who can beat games but wont sit in the chair to do it. Its a bit more upbeat in 2019 though andd I feel my future is bright and redemption nears though. I dont think I would have written these if not for a change of mentality recently, so look forward to a positive summary next post.
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Bitcoin Mining for Beginners 2016: Why you should Mine with Dragonmine

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