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Groestlcoin 6th Anniversary Release
Dear Groestlers, it goes without saying that 2020 has been a difficult time for millions of people worldwide. The groestlcoin team would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone our best to everyone coping with the direct and indirect effects of COVID-19. Let it bring out the best in us all and show that collectively, we can conquer anything. The centralised banks and our national governments are facing unprecedented times with interest rates worldwide dropping to record lows in places. Rest assured that this can only strengthen the fundamentals of all decentralised cryptocurrencies and the vision that was seeded with Satoshi's Bitcoin whitepaper over 10 years ago. Despite everything that has been thrown at us this year, the show must go on and the team will still progress and advance to continue the momentum that we have developed over the past 6 years. In addition to this, we'd like to remind you all that this is Groestlcoin's 6th Birthday release! In terms of price there have been some crazy highs and lows over the years (with highs of around $2.60 and lows of $0.000077!), but in terms of value– Groestlcoin just keeps getting more valuable! In these uncertain times, one thing remains clear – Groestlcoin will keep going and keep innovating regardless. On with what has been worked on and completed over the past few months.
UPDATED - Groestlcoin Core 2.18.2
This is a major release of Groestlcoin Core with many protocol level improvements and code optimizations, featuring the technical equivalent of Bitcoin v0.18.2 but with Groestlcoin-specific patches. On a general level, most of what is new is a new 'Groestlcoin-wallet' tool which is now distributed alongside Groestlcoin Core's other executables. NOTE: The 'Account' API has been removed from this version which was typically used in some tip bots. Please ensure you check the release notes from 2.17.2 for details on replacing this functionality.
Builds are now done through Gitian
Calls to getblocktemplate will fail if the segwit rule is not specified. Calling getblocktemplate without segwit specified is almost certainly a misconfiguration since doing so results in lower rewards for the miner. Failed calls will produce an error message describing how to enable the segwit rule.
A warning is printed if an unrecognized section name is used in the configuration file. Recognized sections are [test], [main], and [regtest].
Four new options are available for configuring the maximum number of messages that ZMQ will queue in memory (the "high water mark") before dropping additional messages. The default value is 1,000, the same as was used for previous releases.
The rpcallowip option can no longer be used to automatically listen on all network interfaces. Instead, the rpcbind parameter must be used to specify the IP addresses to listen on. Listening for RPC commands over a public network connection is insecure and should be disabled, so a warning is now printed if a user selects such a configuration. If you need to expose RPC in order to use a tool like Docker, ensure you only bind RPC to your localhost, e.g. docker run [...] -p 127.0.0.1:1441:1441 (this is an extra :1441 over the normal Docker port specification).
The rpcpassword option now causes a startup error if the password set in the configuration file contains a hash character (#), as it's ambiguous whether the hash character is meant for the password or as a comment.
The whitelistforcerelay option is used to relay transactions from whitelisted peers even when not accepted to the mempool. This option now defaults to being off, so that changes in policy and disconnect/ban behavior will not cause a node that is whitelisting another to be dropped by peers.
A new short about the JSON-RPC interface describes cases where the results of anRPC might contain inconsistencies between data sourced from differentsubsystems, such as wallet state and mempool state.
A new document introduces Groestlcoin Core's BIP174 interface, which is used to allow multiple programs to collaboratively work to create, sign, and broadcast new transactions. This is useful for offline (cold storage) wallets, multisig wallets, coinjoin implementations, and many other cases where two or more programs need to interact to generate a complete transaction.
The output script descriptor (https://github.com/groestlcoin/groestlcoin/blob/mastedoc/descriptors.md) documentation has been updated with information about new features in this still-developing language for describing the output scripts that a wallet or other program wants to receive notifications for, such as which addresses it wants to know received payments. The language is currently used in multiple new and updated RPCs described in these release notes and is expected to be adapted to other RPCs and to the underlying wallet structure.
A new --disable-bip70 option may be passed to ./configure to prevent Groestlcoin-Qt from being built with support for the BIP70 payment protocol or from linking libssl. As the payment protocol has exposed Groestlcoin Core to libssl vulnerabilities in the past, builders who don't need BIP70 support are encouraged to use this option to reduce their exposure to future vulnerabilities.
The minimum required version of Qt (when building the GUI) has been increased from 5.2 to 5.5.1 (the depends system provides 5.9.7)
getnodeaddresses returns peer addresses known to this node. It may be used to find nodes to connect to without using a DNS seeder.
listwalletdir returns a list of wallets in the wallet directory (either the default wallet directory or the directory configured bythe -walletdir parameter).
getrpcinfo returns runtime details of the RPC server. Currently, it returns an array of the currently active commands and how long they've been running.
deriveaddresses returns one or more addresses corresponding to an output descriptor.
getdescriptorinfo accepts a descriptor and returns information aboutit, including its computed checksum.
joinpsbts merges multiple distinct PSBTs into a single PSBT. The multiple PSBTs must have different inputs. The resulting PSBT will contain every input and output from all the PSBTs. Any signatures provided in any of the PSBTs will be dropped.
analyzepsbt examines a PSBT and provides information about what the PSBT contains and the next steps that need to be taken in order to complete the transaction. For each input of a PSBT, analyze psbt provides information about what information is missing for that input, including whether a UTXO needs to be provided, what pubkeys still need to be provided, which scripts need to be provided, and what signatures are still needed. Every input will also list which role is needed to complete that input, and analyzepsbt will also list the next role in general needed to complete the PSBT. analyzepsbt will also provide the estimated fee rate and estimated virtual size of the completed transaction if it has enough information to do so.
utxoupdatepsbt searches the set of Unspent Transaction Outputs (UTXOs) to find the outputs being spent by the partial transaction. PSBTs need to have the UTXOs being spent to be provided because the signing algorithm requires information from the UTXO being spent. For segwit inputs, only the UTXO itself is necessary. For non-segwit outputs, the entire previous transaction is needed so that signers can be sure that they are signing the correct thing. Unfortunately, because the UTXO set only contains UTXOs and not full transactions, utxoupdatepsbt will only add the UTXO for segwit inputs.
getpeerinfo now returns an additional minfeefilter field set to the peer's BIP133 fee filter. You can use this to detect that you have peers that are willing to accept transactions below the default minimum relay fee.
The mempool RPCs, such as getrawmempool with verbose=true, now return an additional "bip125-replaceable" value indicating whether thetransaction (or its unconfirmed ancestors) opts-in to asking nodes and miners to replace it with a higher-feerate transaction spending any of the same inputs.
settxfee previously silently ignored attempts to set the fee below the allowed minimums. It now prints a warning. The special value of"0" may still be used to request the minimum value.
getaddressinfo now provides an ischange field indicating whether the wallet used the address in a change output.
importmulti has been updated to support P2WSH, P2WPKH, P2SH-P2WPKH, and P2SH-P2WSH. Requests for P2WSH and P2SH-P2WSH accept an additional witnessscript parameter.
importmulti now returns an additional warnings field for each request with an array of strings explaining when fields are being ignored or are inconsistent, if there are any.
getaddressinfo now returns an additional solvable Boolean field when Groestlcoin Core knows enough about the address's scriptPubKey, optional redeemScript, and optional witnessScript for the wallet to be able to generate an unsigned input spending funds sent to that address.
The getaddressinfo, listunspent, and scantxoutset RPCs now return an additional desc field that contains an output descriptor containing all key paths and signing information for the address (except for the private key). The desc field is only returned for getaddressinfo and listunspent when the address is solvable.
importprivkey will preserve previously-set labels for addresses or public keys corresponding to the private key being imported. For example, if you imported a watch-only address with the label "coldwallet" in earlier releases of Groestlcoin Core, subsequently importing the private key would default to resetting the address's label to the default empty-string label (""). In this release, the previous label of "cold wallet" will be retained. If you optionally specify any label besides the default when calling importprivkey, the new label will be applied to the address.
getmininginfo now omits currentblockweight and currentblocktx when a block was never assembled via RPC on this node.
The getrawtransaction RPC & REST endpoints no longer check the unspent UTXO set for a transaction. The remaining behaviors are as follows:
If a blockhash is provided, check the corresponding block.
If no blockhash is provided, check the mempool.
If no blockhash is provided but txindex is enabled, also check txindex.
unloadwallet is now synchronous, meaning it will not return until the wallet is fully unloaded.
importmulti now supports importing of addresses from descriptors. A desc parameter can be provided instead of the "scriptPubKey" in are quest, as well as an optional range for ranged descriptors to specify the start and end of the range to import. Descriptors with key origin information imported through importmulti will have their key origin information stored in the wallet for use with creating PSBTs.
listunspent has been modified so that it also returns witnessScript, the witness script in the case of a P2WSH orP2SH-P2WSH output.
createwallet now has an optional blank argument that can be used to create a blank wallet. Blank wallets do not have any keys or HDseed. They cannot be opened in software older than 2.18.2. Once a blank wallet has a HD seed set (by using sethdseed) or private keys, scripts, addresses, and other watch only things have been imported, the wallet is no longer blank and can be opened in 2.17.2. Encrypting a blank wallet will also set a HD seed for it.
signrawtransaction is removed after being deprecated and hidden behind a special configuration option in version 2.17.2.
The 'account' API is removed after being deprecated in v2.17.2 The 'label' API was introduced in v2.17.2 as a replacement for accounts. See the release notes from v2.17.2 for a full description of the changes from the 'account' API to the 'label' API.
addwitnessaddress is removed after being deprecated in version 2.16.0.
generate is deprecated and will be fully removed in a subsequent major version. This RPC is only used for testing, but its implementation reached across multiple subsystems (wallet and mining), so it is being deprecated to simplify the wallet-node interface. Projects that are using generate for testing purposes should transition to using the generatetoaddress RPC, which does not require or use the wallet component. Calling generatetoaddress with an address returned by the getnewaddress RPC gives the same functionality as the old generate RPC. To continue using generate in this version, restart groestlcoind with the -deprecatedrpc=generate configuration option.
Be reminded that parts of the validateaddress command have been deprecated and moved to getaddressinfo. The following deprecated fields have moved to getaddressinfo: ismine, iswatchonly,script, hex, pubkeys, sigsrequired, pubkey, embedded,iscompressed, label, timestamp, hdkeypath, hdmasterkeyid.
The addresses field has been removed from the validateaddressand getaddressinfo RPC methods. This field was confusing since it referred to public keys using their P2PKH address. Clients should use the embedded.address field for P2SH or P2WSH wrapped addresses, and pubkeys for inspecting multisig participants.
A new /rest/blockhashbyheight/ endpoint is added for fetching the hash of the block in the current best blockchain based on its height (how many blocks it is after the Genesis Block).
A new Window menu is added alongside the existing File, Settings, and Help menus. Several items from the other menus that opened new windows have been moved to this new Window menu.
In the Send tab, the checkbox for "pay only the required fee" has been removed. Instead, the user can simply decrease the value in the Custom Fee rate field all the way down to the node's configured minimumrelay fee.
In the Overview tab, the watch-only balance will be the only balance shown if the wallet was created using the createwallet RPC and thedisable_private_keys parameter was set to true.
The launch-on-startup option is no longer available on macOS if compiled with macosx min version greater than 10.11 (useCXXFLAGS="-mmacosx-version-min=10.11" CFLAGS="-mmacosx-version-min=10.11" for setting the deployment sdkversion)
A new groestlcoin-wallet tool is now distributed alongside Groestlcoin Core's other executables. Without needing to use any RPCs, this tool can currently create a new wallet file or display some basic information about an existing wallet, such as whether the wallet is encrypted, whether it uses an HD seed, how many transactions it contains, and how many address book entries it has.
Since version 2.16.0, Groestlcoin Core's built-in wallet has defaulted to generating P2SH-wrapped segwit addresses when users want to receive payments. These addresses are backwards compatible with all widely used software. Starting with Groestlcoin Core 2.20.1 (expected about a year after 2.18.2), Groestlcoin Core will default to native segwitaddresses (bech32) that provide additional fee savings and other benefits. Currently, many wallets and services already support sending to bech32 addresses, and if the Groestlcoin Core project sees enough additional adoption, it will instead default to bech32 receiving addresses in Groestlcoin Core 2.19.1. P2SH-wrapped segwit addresses will continue to be provided if the user requests them in the GUI or by RPC, and anyone who doesn't want the update will be able to configure their default address type. (Similarly, pioneering users who want to change their default now may set the addresstype=bech32 configuration option in any Groestlcoin Core release from 2.16.0 up.)
BIP 61 reject messages are now deprecated. Reject messages have no use case on the P2P network and are only logged for debugging by most network nodes. Furthermore, they increase bandwidth and can be harmful for privacy and security. It has been possible to disable BIP 61 messages since v2.17.2 with the -enablebip61=0 option. BIP 61 messages will be disabled by default in a future version, before being removed entirely.
The submitblock RPC previously returned the reason a rejected block was invalid the first time it processed that block but returned a generic "duplicate" rejection message on subsequent occasions it processed the same block. It now always returns the fundamental reason for rejecting an invalid block and only returns "duplicate" for valid blocks it has already accepted.
A new submitheader RPC allows submitting block headers independently from their block. This is likely only useful for testing.
The signrawtransactionwithkey and signrawtransactionwithwallet RPCs have been modified so that they also optionally accept a witnessScript, the witness script in the case of a P2WSH orP2SH-P2WSH output. This is compatible with the change to listunspent.
For the walletprocesspsbt and walletcreatefundedpsbt RPCs, if thebip32derivs parameter is set to true but the key metadata for a public key has not been updated yet, then that key will have a derivation path as if it were just an independent key (i.e. no derivation path and its master fingerprint is itself).
The -usehd configuration option was removed in version 2.16.0 From that version onwards, all new wallets created are hierarchical deterministic wallets. This release makes specifying -usehd an invalid configuration option.
This release allows peers that your node automatically disconnected for misbehaviour (e.g. sending invalid data) to reconnect to your node if you have unused incoming connection slots. If your slots fill up, a misbehaving node will be disconnected to make room for nodes without a history of problems (unless the misbehaving node helps your node in some other way, such as by connecting to a part of the Internet from which you don't have many other peers). Previously, Groestlcoin Core banned the IP addresses of misbehaving peers for a period (default of 1 day); this was easily circumvented by attackers with multiple IP addresses. If you manually ban a peer, such as by using the setban RPC, all connections from that peer will still be rejected.
The key metadata will need to be upgraded the first time that the HDseed is available. For unencrypted wallets this will occur on wallet loading. For encrypted wallets this will occur the first time the wallet is unlocked.
Newly encrypted wallets will no longer require restarting the software. Instead such wallets will be completely unloaded and reloaded to achieve the same effect.
A sub-project of Bitcoin Core now provides Hardware Wallet Interaction (HWI) scripts that allow command-line users to use several popular hardware key management devices with Groestlcoin Core. See their project page for details.
This release changes the Random Number Generator (RNG) used from OpenSSL to Groestlcoin Core's own implementation, although entropy gathered by Groestlcoin Core is fed out to OpenSSL and then read back in when the program needs strong randomness. This moves Groestlcoin Core a little closer to no longer needing to depend on OpenSSL, a dependency that has caused security issues in the past. The new implementation gathers entropy from multiple sources, including from hardware supporting the rdseed CPU instruction.
On macOS, Groestlcoin Core now opts out of application CPU throttling ("app nap") during initial blockchain download, when catching up from over 100 blocks behind the current chain tip, or when reindexing chain data. This helps prevent these operations from taking an excessively long time because the operating system is attempting to conserve power.
How to Upgrade?
Windows If you are running an older version, shut it down. Wait until it has completely shut down (which might take a few minutes for older versions), then run the installer. OSX If you are running an older version, shut it down. Wait until it has completely shut down (which might take a few minutes for older versions), run the dmg and drag Groestlcoin Core to Applications. Ubuntu http://groestlcoin.org/forum/index.php?topic=441.0
ALL NEW - Groestlcoin Moonshine iOS/Android Wallet
Built with React Native, Moonshine utilizes Electrum-GRS's JSON-RPC methods to interact with the Groestlcoin network. GRS Moonshine's intended use is as a hot wallet. Meaning, your keys are only as safe as the device you install this wallet on. As with any hot wallet, please ensure that you keep only a small, responsible amount of Groestlcoin on it at any given time.
Groestlcoin Mainnet & Testnet supported
Multiple wallet support
Electrum - Support for both random and custom peers
Biometric + Pin authentication
Custom fee selection
Import mnemonic phrases via manual entry or scanning
BIP39 Passphrase functionality
Support for Segwit-compatible & legacy addresses in settings
Support individual private key sweeping
UTXO blacklisting - Accessible via the Transaction Detail view, this allows users to blacklist any utxo that they do not wish to include in their list of available utxo's when sending transactions. Blacklisting a utxo excludes its amount from the wallet's total balance.
Ability to Sign & Verify Messages
Support BitID for password-free authentication
Coin Control - This can be accessed from the Send Transaction view and basically allows users to select from a list of available UTXO's to include in their transaction.
HODL GRS connects directly to the Groestlcoin network using SPV mode and doesn't rely on servers that can be hacked or disabled. HODL GRS utilizes AES hardware encryption, app sandboxing, and the latest security features to protect users from malware, browser security holes, and even physical theft. Private keys are stored only in the secure enclave of the user's phone, inaccessible to anyone other than the user. Simplicity and ease-of-use is the core design principle of HODL GRS. A simple recovery phrase (which we call a Backup Recovery Key) is all that is needed to restore the user's wallet if they ever lose or replace their device. HODL GRS is deterministic, which means the user's balance and transaction history can be recovered just from the backup recovery key.
Simplified payment verification for fast mobile performance
Groestlcoin Seed Savior is a tool for recovering BIP39 seed phrases. This tool is meant to help users with recovering a slightly incorrect Groestlcoin mnemonic phrase (AKA backup or seed). You can enter an existing BIP39 mnemonic and get derived addresses in various formats. To find out if one of the suggested addresses is the right one, you can click on the suggested address to check the address' transaction history on a block explorer.
If a word is wrong, the tool will try to suggest the closest option.
If a word is missing or unknown, please type "?" instead and the tool will find all relevant options.
NOTE: NVidia GPU or any CPU only. AMD graphics cards will not work with this address generator. VanitySearch is a command-line Segwit-capable vanity Groestlcoin address generator. Add unique flair when you tell people to send Groestlcoin. Alternatively, VanitySearch can be used to generate random addresses offline. If you're tired of the random, cryptic addresses generated by regular groestlcoin clients, then VanitySearch is the right choice for you to create a more personalized address. VanitySearch is a groestlcoin address prefix finder. If you want to generate safe private keys, use the -s option to enter your passphrase which will be used for generating a base key as for BIP38 standard (VanitySearch.exe -s "My PassPhrase" FXPref). You can also use VanitySearch.exe -ps "My PassPhrase" which will add a crypto secure seed to your passphrase. VanitySearch may not compute a good grid size for your GPU, so try different values using -g option in order to get the best performances. If you want to use GPUs and CPUs together, you may have best performances by keeping one CPU core for handling GPU(s)/CPU exchanges (use -t option to set the number of CPU threads).
Fixed size arithmetic
Fast Modular Inversion (Delayed Right Shift 62 bits)
SecpK1 Fast modular multiplication (2 steps folding 512bits to 256bits using 64 bits digits)
Use some properties of elliptic curve to generate more keys
SSE Secure Hash Algorithm SHA256 and RIPEMD160 (CPU)
Groestlcoin EasyVanity 2020 is a windows app built from the ground-up and makes it easier than ever before to create your very own bespoke bech32 address(es) when whilst not connected to the internet. If you're tired of the random, cryptic bech32 addresses generated by regular Groestlcoin clients, then Groestlcoin EasyVanity2020 is the right choice for you to create a more personalised bech32 address. This 2020 version uses the new VanitySearch to generate not only legacy addresses (F prefix) but also Bech32 addresses (grs1 prefix).
Ability to continue finding keys after first one is found
Includes warning on start-up if connected to the internet
Ability to output keys to a text file (And shows button to open that directory)
Show and hide the private key with a simple toggle switch
Show full output of commands
Ability to choose between Processor (CPU) and Graphics Card (GPU) ( NVidia ONLY! )
Features both a Light and Dark Material Design-Style Themes
Free software - MIT. Anyone can audit the code.
Written in C# - The code is short, and easy to review.
Groestlcoin WPF is an alternative full node client with optional lightweight 'thin-client' mode based on WPF. Windows Presentation Foundation (WPF) is one of Microsoft's latest approaches to a GUI framework, used with the .NET framework. Its main advantages over the original Groestlcoin client include support for exporting blockchain.dat and including a lite wallet mode. This wallet was previously deprecated but has been brought back to life with modern standards.
Works via TOR or SOCKS5 proxy
Can use bootstrap.dat format as blockchain database
Import/Export blockchain to/from bootstrap.dat
Import wallet.dat from Groestlcoin-qt wallet
Export wallet to wallet.dat
Use both groestlcoin-wpf and groestlcoin-qt with the same addresses in parallel. When you send money from one program, the transaction will automatically be visible on the other wallet.
Rescan blockchain with a simple mouse click
Works as a full node and listens to port 1331 (listening port can be changed)
Fast Block verifying, parallel processing on multi-core CPUs
Mine Groestlcoins with your CPU by a simple mouse click
All private keys are kept encrypted on your local machine (or on a USB stick)
Lite - Has a lightweight "thin client" mode which does not require a new user to download the entire Groestlcoin chain and store it
Free and decentralised - Open Source under GNU license
Fixed Import/Export to wallet.dat
Rescan wallet option
Change wallet password option
Address type and Change type options through *.conf file
Import from bootstrap.dat - It is a flat, binary file containing Groestlcoin blockchain data, from the genesis block through a recent height. All versions automatically validate and import the file "grs.bootstrap.dat" in the GRS directory. Grs.bootstrap.dat is compatible with Qt wallet. GroestlCoin-Qt can load from it.
In Full mode file %APPDATA%\Groestlcoin-WPF\GRS\GRS.bootstrap.dat is full blockchain in standard bootstrap.dat format and can be used with other clients.
Groestlcoin Electrum Personal Server aims to make using Electrum Groestlcoin wallet more secure and more private. It makes it easy to connect your Electrum-GRS wallet to your own full node. It is an implementation of the Electrum-grs server protocol which fulfils the specific need of using the Electrum-grs wallet backed by a full node, but without the heavyweight server backend, for a single user. It allows the user to benefit from all Groestlcoin Core's resource-saving features like pruning, blocks only and disabled txindex. All Electrum-GRS's feature-richness like hardware wallet integration, multi-signature wallets, offline signing, seed recovery phrases, coin control and so on can still be used, but connected only to the user's own full node. Full node wallets are important in Groestlcoin because they are a big part of what makes the system be trust-less. No longer do people have to trust a financial institution like a bank or PayPal, they can run software on their own computers. If Groestlcoin is digital gold, then a full node wallet is your own personal goldsmith who checks for you that received payments are genuine. Full node wallets are also important for privacy. Using Electrum-GRS under default configuration requires it to send (hashes of) all your Groestlcoin addresses to some server. That server can then easily spy on your transactions. Full node wallets like Groestlcoin Electrum Personal Server would download the entire blockchain and scan it for the user's own addresses, and therefore don't reveal to anyone else which Groestlcoin addresses they are interested in. Groestlcoin Electrum Personal Server can also broadcast transactions through Tor which improves privacy by resisting traffic analysis for broadcasted transactions which can link the IP address of the user to the transaction. If enabled this would happen transparently whenever the user simply clicks "Send" on a transaction in Electrum-grs wallet. Note: Currently Groestlcoin Electrum Personal Server can only accept one connection at a time.
Use your own node
Uses less CPU and RAM than ElectrumX
Used intermittently rather than needing to be always-on
Doesn't require an index of every Groestlcoin address ever used like on ElectrumX
UPDATED – Android Wallet 7.38.1 - Main Net + Test Net
The app allows you to send and receive Groestlcoin on your device using QR codes and URI links. When using this app, please back up your wallet and email them to yourself! This will save your wallet in a password protected file. Then your coins can be retrieved even if you lose your phone.
Add confidence messages, helping users to understand the confidence state of their payments.
Handle edge case when restoring via an external app.
Count devices with a memory class of 128 MB as low ram.
Introduce dark mode on Android 10 devices.
Reduce memory usage of PIN-protected wallets.
Tapping on the app's version will reveal a checksum of the APK that was installed.
Fix issue with confirmation of transactions that empty your wallet.
Groestlcoin Sentinel is a great solution for anyone who wants the convenience and utility of a hot wallet for receiving payments directly into their cold storage (or hardware wallets). Sentinel accepts XPUB's, YPUB'S, ZPUB's and individual Groestlcoin address. Once added you will be able to view balances, view transactions, and (in the case of XPUB's, YPUB's and ZPUB's) deterministically generate addresses for that wallet. Groestlcoin Sentinel is a fork of Groestlcoin Samourai Wallet with all spending and transaction building code removed.
Just finished watching The Weekly (it’s kind of a Vice rip-off by the NYT) on Hulu where they went into detail about their story published this week about a « hacker » named Patrick Kessler who claimed to have tens of thousands of hours of Epstein’s private videos. Turns out, Patrick did not released the videos and there is a lot of questions with his credibility, nonetheless, he clearly exposed two lawyers (Bois and Pottinger) for attempting to profit by offering to reach large settlements in which they would take 40%. The article is here: Jeffrey Epstein, Blackmail, and a Lucrative Hotlist Even though it sounds like this guy Kessler is full of shit, I REALLY wish that he wasn’t and at some point these troves of photos and videos get released and a bunch of rich and powerful people get what they deserve for abusing these women. For those who need access to NYT- it is a long article, but here’s the full text: By Jessica Silver-Greenberg, Emily Steel, Jacob Bernstein and David Enrich Nov. 30, 2019 Soon after the sex criminal Jeffrey Epstein died in August, a mysterious man met with two prominent lawyers. Towering, barrel-chested and wild-bearded, he was a prodigious drinker and often wore flip-flops. He went by a pseudonym, Patrick Kessler — a necessity, he said, given the shadowy, dangerous world that he inhabited. He told the lawyers he had something incendiary: a vast archive of Mr. Epstein’s data, stored on encrypted servers overseas. He said he had years of the financier’s communications and financial records — as well as thousands of hours of footage from hidden cameras in the bedrooms of Mr. Epstein’s properties. The videos, Kessler said, captured some of the world’s richest, most powerful men in compromising sexual situations — even in the act of rape. Kessler said he wanted to expose these men. If he was telling the truth, his trove could answer one of the Epstein saga’s most baffling questions: How did a college dropout and high school math teacher amass a purported nine-figure fortune? One persistent but unproven theory was that he ran a sprawling blackmail operation. That would explain why moguls, scientists, political leaders and a royal stayed loyal to him, in some cases even after he first went to jail. Kessler’s tale was enough to hook the two lawyers, the famed litigator David Boies and his friend John Stanley Pottinger. If Kessler was authentic, his videos would arm them with immense leverage over some very important people. Mr. Boies and Mr. Pottinger discussed a plan. They could use the supposed footage in litigation or to try to reach deals with men who appeared in it, with money flowing into a charitable foundation. In encrypted chats with Kessler, Mr. Pottinger referred to a roster of potential targets as the “hot list.” He described hypothetical plans in which the lawyers would pocket up to 40 percent of the settlements and could extract money from wealthy men by flipping from representing victims to representing their alleged abusers. The possibilities were tantalizing — and extended beyond vindicating victims. Mr. Pottinger saw a chance to supercharge his law practice. For Mr. Boies, there was a shot at redemption, after years of criticism for his work on behalf of Theranos and Harvey Weinstein. In the end, there would be no damning videos, no funds pouring into a new foundation. Mr. Boies and Mr. Pottinger would go from toasting Kessler as their “whistle-blower” and “informant” to torching him as a “fraudster” and a “spy.” Kessler was a liar, and he wouldn’t expose any sexual abuse. But he would reveal something else: The extraordinary, at times deceitful measures elite lawyers deployed in an effort to get evidence that could be used to win lucrative settlements — and keep misconduct hidden, allowing perpetrators to abuse again. Mr. Boies has publicly decried such secret deals as “rich man’s justice,” a way that powerful men buy their way out of legal and reputational jeopardy. This is how it works. 7 men and a headless parrot The man who called himself Kessler first contacted a Florida lawyer, Bradley J. Edwards, who was in the news for representing women with claims against Mr. Epstein. It was late August, about two weeks after the financier killed himself in a jail cell while awaiting trial on federal sex-trafficking charges. Mr. Edwards, who did not respond to interview requests, had a law firm called Edwards Pottinger, and he soon referred Kessler to his New York partner. Silver-haired and 79, Mr. Pottinger had been a senior civil-rights official in the Nixon and Ford administrations, but he also dabbled in investment banking and wrote best-selling medical thrillers. He was perhaps best known for having dated Gloria Steinem and Kathie Lee Gifford. Mr. Pottinger recalled that Mr. Edwards warned him about Kessler, saying that he was “endearing,” “spooky” and “loves to drink like a fish.” After an initial discussion with Kessler in Washington, Mr. Pottinger briefed Mr. Boies — whose firm was also active in representing accusers in the Epstein case — about the sensational claims. He then invited Kessler to his Manhattan apartment. Kessler admired a wall-mounted frame containing a headless stuffed parrot; on TV, the Philadelphia Eagles were mounting a comeback against the Washington Redskins. Mr. Pottinger poured Kessler a glass of WhistlePig whiskey, and the informant began to talk. In his conversations with Mr. Pottinger and, later, Mr. Boies, Kessler said his videos featured numerous powerful men who were already linked to Mr. Epstein: Ehud Barak, the former Israeli prime minister; Alan Dershowitz, a constitutional lawyer; Prince Andrew; three billionaires; and a prominent chief executive. All seven men, or their representatives, told The New York Times they never engaged in sexual activity on Mr. Epstein’s properties. The Times has no reason to believe Kessler’s supposed video footage is real. In his apartment, Mr. Pottinger presented Kessler with a signed copy of “The Boss,” his 2005 novel. “One minute you’re bending the rules,” blares the cover of the paperback version. “The next minute you’re breaking the law.” On the title page, Mr. Pottinger wrote: “Here’s to the great work you are to do. Happy to be part of it.” Mr. Pottinger also gave Kessler a draft contract to bring him on as a client, allowing him to use a fake name. “For reasons revealed to you, I prefer to proceed with this engagement under the name Patrick Kessler,” the agreement said. Despite the enormities of the Epstein scandal, few of his accusers have gotten a sense of justice or resolution. Mr. Pottinger thought Kessler’s files could change everything. This strange man was theatrical and liked his alcohol, but if there was even a chance his claims were true, they were worth pursuing. “Our clients are said to be liars and prostitutes,” Mr. Pottinger later said in an interview with The Times, “and we now have someone who says, ‘I can give you secret photographic proof of abuse that will completely change the entire fabric of your practice and get justice for these girls.’ And you think that we wouldn’t try to get that?” A victim becomes a hacker Mr. Pottinger and Mr. Boies have known each other for years, a friendship forged on bike trips in France and Italy. In legal circles, Mr. Boies was royalty: He was the one who fought for presidential candidate Al Gore before the Supreme Court, took on Microsoft in a landmark antitrust case, and helped obtain the right for gays and lesbians to get married in California. But then Mr. Boies got involved with the blood-testing start-up Theranos. As the company was being revealed as a fraud, he tried to bully whistle-blowers into not speaking to a Wall Street Journal reporter, and he was criticized for possible conflicts of interest when he joined the company’s board in 2015. Two years later, Mr. Boies helped his longtime client Harvey Weinstein hire private investigators who intimidated sources and trailed reporters for The Times and The New Yorker — even though Mr. Boies’s firm had worked for The Times on other matters. (The Times fired his firm.) By 2019, Mr. Boies, 78, was representing a number of Mr. Epstein’s alleged victims. They got his services pro bono, and he got the chance to burnish his legacy. When Mr. Pottinger contacted him about Kessler, he was intrigued. On Sept. 9, Mr. Boies greeted Kessler at the offices of his law firm, Boies Schiller Flexner, in a gleaming new skyscraper at Hudson Yards on Manhattan’s West Side. Kessler unfurled a fantastic story, one he would embroider and alter in later weeks, that began with him growing up somewhere within a three-hour radius of Washington. Kessler said he had been molested as a boy by a Bible school teacher and sought solace on the internet, where he fell in with a group of victims turned hackers, who used their skills to combat pedophilia. Kessler claimed that a technology executive had introduced him to Mr. Epstein, who in 2012 hired Kessler to set up encrypted servers to preserve his extensive digital archives. With Mr. Epstein dead, Kessler boasted to the lawyers, he had unfettered access to the material. He said the volume of videos was overwhelming: more than a decade of round-the-clock footage from dozens of cameras. Kessler displayed some pixelated video stills on his phone. In one, a bearded man with his mouth open appears to be having sex with a naked woman. Kessler said the man was Mr. Barak. In another, a man with black-framed glasses is seen shirtless with a woman on his lap, her breasts exposed. Kessler said it was Mr. Dershowitz. He also said that some of the supposed videos appeared to have been edited and cataloged for the purpose of blackmail. “This was explosive information if true, for lots and lots of people,” Mr. Boies said in an interview. Mr. Boies and Mr. Pottinger had decades of legal experience and considered themselves experts at assessing witnesses’ credibility. While they couldn’t be sure, they thought Kessler was probably legit. A chance to sway the Israeli election Within hours of the Hudson Yards meeting, Mr. Pottinger sent Kessler a series of texts over the encrypted messaging app Signal. According to excerpts viewed by The Times, Mr. Pottinger and Kessler discussed a plan to disseminate some of the informant’s materials — starting with the supposed footage of Mr. Barak. The Israeli election was barely a week away, and Mr. Barak was challenging Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The purported images of Mr. Barak might be able to sway the election — and fetch a high price. (“Total lie with no basis in reality,” Mr. Barak said when asked about the existence of such videos.) “Can you review your visual evidence to be sure some or all is indisputably him? If so, we can make it work,” Mr. Pottinger wrote. Kessler said he would do so. Mr. Pottinger sent a yellow smiley-face emoji with its tongue sticking out. “Can you share your contact that would be purchasing,” Kessler asked. “Sheldon Adelson,” Mr. Pottinger answered. Mr. Adelson, a billionaire casino magnate in Las Vegas, had founded one of Israel’s largest newspapers, and it was an enthusiastic booster of Mr. Netanyahu. Mr. Pottinger wrote that he and Mr. Boies hoped to fly to Nevada to meet with Mr. Adelson to discuss the images. “Do you believe that adelson has the pull to insure this will hurt his bid for election?” Kessler asked the next morning. Mr. Pottinger reassured him. “There is no question that Adelson has the capacity to air the truth about EB if he wants to,” he said, using Mr. Barak’s initials. He said he planned to discuss the matter with Mr. Boies that evening. Mr. Boies confirmed that they discussed sharing the photo with Mr. Adelson but said the plan was never executed. Boaz Bismuth, the editor in chief of the newspaper, Israel Hayom, said its journalists were approached by an Israeli source who pitched them supposed images of Mr. Barak, but that “we were not interested.” ‘These are wealthy wrongdoers’ The men whom Kessler claimed to have on tape were together worth many billions. Some of their public relations teams had spent months trying to tamp down media coverage of their connections to Mr. Epstein. Imagine how much they might pay to make incriminating videos vanish. You might think that lawyers representing abuse victims would want to publicly expose such information to bolster their clients’ claims. But that is not how the legal industry always works. Often, keeping things quiet is good business. One of the revelations of the #MeToo era has been that victims’ lawyers often brokered secret deals in which alleged abusers paid to keep their accusers quiet and the allegations out of the public sphere. Lawyers can pocket at least a third of such settlements, profiting off a system that masks misconduct and allows men to abuse again. Mr. Boies and Mr. Pottinger said in interviews that they were looking into creating a charity to help victims of sexual abuse. It would be bankrolled by private legal settlements with the men on the videos. Mr. Boies acknowledged that Kessler might get paid. “If we were able to use this to help our victims recover money, we would treat him generously,” he said in September. He said that his firm would not get a cut of any settlements. Such agreements would have made it less likely that videos involving the men became public. “Generally what settlements are about is getting peace,” Mr. Boies said. Mr. Pottinger told Kessler that the charity he was setting up would be called the Astria Foundation — a name he later said his girlfriend came up with, in a nod to Astraea, the Greek goddess of innocence and justice. “We need to get it funded by abusers,” Mr. Pottinger texted, noting in another message that “these are wealthy wrongdoers.” Mr. Pottinger asked Kessler to start compiling incriminating materials on a specific group of men. “I’m way ahead of you,” Kessler responded. He said he had asked his team of fellow hackers to search the files for the three billionaires, the C.E.O. and Prince Andrew. “Yes, that’s exactly how to do this,” Mr. Pottinger said. “Videos for sure, but email traffic, too.” “I call it our hot list,” he added. Image The Grand Sichuan restaurant in Manhattan. The Grand Sichuan restaurant in Manhattan.Credit...Stephanie Diani for The New York Times A quiet table at the back of Grand Sichuan In mid-September, Mr. Boies and Mr. Pottinger invited reporters from The Times to the Boies Schiller offices to meet Kessler. The threat of a major news organization writing about the videos — and confirming the existence of an extensive surveillance apparatus — could greatly enhance the lawyers’ leverage over the wealthy men. Before the session, Mr. Pottinger encouraged Kessler to focus on certain men, like Mr. Barak, while avoiding others. Referring to the reporters, he added, “Let them drink from a fountain instead of a water hose. They and the readers will follow that better.” The meeting took place on a cloudy Saturday morning. After agreeing to leave their phones and laptops outside, the reporters entered a 20th-floor conference room. Kessler was huge: more than 6 feet tall, pushing 300 pounds, balding, his temples speckled with gray. He told his story and presented images that he said were of Mr. Epstein, Mr. Barak and Mr. Dershowitz having sex with women. Barely an hour after the session ended, the Times reporters received an email from Kessler: “Are you free?” He said he wanted to meet — alone. “Tell no one else.” That afternoon, they met at Grand Sichuan, an iconic Chinese restaurant in Manhattan’s Chelsea neighborhood. The lunch rush was over, and the trio sat at a quiet table in the back. A small group of women huddled nearby, speaking Mandarin and snipping the ends off string beans. Kessler complained that Mr. Boies and Mr. Pottinger were more interested in making money than in exposing wrongdoers. He pulled out his phone, warned the reporters not to touch it, and showed more of what he had. There was a color photo of a bare-chested, gray-haired man with a slight smile. Kessler said it was a billionaire. He also showed blurry, black-and-white images of a dark-haired man receiving oral sex. He said it was a prominent C.E.O. Soup dumplings and Gui Zhou chicken arrived, and Kessler kept talking. He said he had found financial ledgers on Mr. Epstein’s servers that showed he had vast amounts of Bitcoin and cash in the Middle East and Bangkok, and hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of gold, silver and diamonds. He presented no proof. But it is common for whistle-blowers to be erratic and slow to produce their evidence, and The Times thought it was worth investigating Kessler’s claims. The conversation continued in a conference room at a Washington hotel five days later, after a text exchange in which Kessler noted his enthusiasm for Japanese whiskey. Both parties brought bottles to the hotel, and Kessler spent nearly eight hours downing glass after glass. He veered from telling tales about the dark web to professing love for “Little House on the Prairie.” He asserted that he had evidence Mr. Epstein had derived his wealth through illicit means. At one point, he showed what he said were classified C.I.A. documents. Kessler said he had no idea who the women in the videos were or how the lawyers might go about identifying them to act on their behalf. From his perspective, he said, it seemed like Mr. Boies and Mr. Pottinger were plotting to use his footage to demand huge sums from billionaires. He said it looked like blackmail — and that he could prove it. ‘We keep it. We keep everything’ Was Kessler’s story plausible? Did America’s best-connected sexual predator accumulate incriminating videos of powerful men? Two women who spent time in Mr. Epstein’s homes said the answer was yes. In an unpublished memoir, Virginia Giuffre, who accused Mr. Epstein of making her a “sex slave,” wrote that she discovered a room in his New York mansion where monitors displayed real-time surveillance footage. And Maria Farmer, an artist who accused Mr. Epstein of sexually assaulting her when she worked for him in the 1990s, said that Mr. Epstein once walked her through the mansion, pointing out pin-sized cameras that he said were in every room. “I said, ‘Are you recording all this?’” Ms. Farmer said in an interview. “He said, ‘Yes. We keep it. We keep everything.’” During a 2005 search of Mr. Epstein’s Palm Beach, Fla., estate, the police found two cameras hidden in clocks — one in the garage and the other next to his desk, according to police reports. But no other cameras were found. Kessler claimed to have been an early investor in a North Carolina coffee company, whose sticker was affixed to his laptop. But its founder said no one matching Kessler’s description had ever been affiliated with the company. Kessler insisted that he invested in 2009, but the company wasn’t founded until 2011. The contents of Kessler’s supposed C.I.A. documents turned out to be easily findable using Google. At one point, Kessler said that one of his associates had been missing and was found dead; later, Kessler said the man was alive and in the southern United States. He said that his mother had died when he was young — and that he had recently given her a hug. A photo he sent from what he said was a Washington-area hospital featured a distinctive blanket, but when The Times called local hospitals, they didn’t recognize the pattern. After months of effort, The Times could not learn Kessler’s identity or confirm any element of his back story. “I am very often being purposefully inconsistent,” Kessler said, when pressed. A Weinstein cameo On the last Friday in September, Mr. Boies and Mr. Pottinger sat on a blue leather couch in the corner of a members-only dining room at the Harvard Club in Midtown Manhattan. Antlered animal heads and oil paintings hung from the dark wooden walls. The lawyers were there to make a deal with The Times. Tired of waiting for Kessler’s motherlode, Mr. Pottinger said they planned to send a team overseas to download the material from his servers. He said he had alerted the F.B.I. and a prosecutor in the United States attorney’s office in Manhattan. Mr. Boies told an editor for The Times that they would be willing to share everything, on one condition: They would have discretion over which men could be written about, and when. He explained that if compromising videos about particular men became public, that could torpedo litigation or attempts to negotiate settlements. The Times editor didn’t commit. Mr. Boies and Mr. Pottinger later said those plans had hinged on verifying the videos’ authenticity and on having clients with legitimate legal claims against the men. Otherwise, legal experts said, it might have crossed the line into extortion. The meeting was briefly interrupted when Bob Weinstein, the brother of Harvey Weinstein, bounded up to the table and plopped onto the couch next to Mr. Boies. The two men spent several minutes talking, laughing and slapping each other on the back. While Mr. Boies and Mr. Weinstein chatted, Mr. Pottinger furtively displayed the black-and-white shot of a man in glasses having sex. Both lawyers said it looked like Mr. Dershowitz. ‘You don’t keep your glasses on when you’re doing that’ One day in late September, Mr. Dershowitz’s secretary relayed a message: Someone named Patrick Kessler wanted to speak to him about Mr. Boies. “The problem is that they don’t want to move forward with any of these people legally,” Kessler said. “They’re just interested in trying to settle and take a cut.” “Who are these people that you have on videotape?” Mr. Dershowitz asked. “There’s a lot of people,” Kessler said, naming a few powerful men. He added, “There’s a long list of people that they want me to have that I don’t have.” “Who?” Mr. Dershowitz asked. “Did they ask about me?” “Of course they asked about you. You know that, sir.” “And you don’t have anything on me, right?” “I do not, no,” Kessler said. “Because I never, I never had sex with anybody,” Mr. Dershowitz said. Later in the call, he added, “I am completely clean. I was at Jeffrey’s house. I stayed there. But I didn’t have any sex with anybody.” What was the purpose of Kessler’s phone call? Why did he tell Mr. Dershowitz that he wasn’t on the supposed surveillance tapes, contradicting what he had said and showed to Mr. Boies, Mr. Pottinger and The Times? Did the call sound a little rehearsed? Mr. Dershowitz said that he didn’t know why Kessler contacted him, and that the phone call was the only time the two men ever spoke. When The Times showed him one of Kessler’s photos, in which a bespectacled man resembling Mr. Dershowitz appears to be having sex, Mr. Dershowitz laughed and said the man wasn’t him. His wife, Carolyn Cohen, peeked at the photo, too. “You don’t keep your glasses on when you’re doing that,” she said. Data set (supposedly) to self-destruct In early October, Kessler said he was ready to produce the Epstein files. He told The Times that he had created duplicate versions of Mr. Epstein’s servers. He laid out detailed logistical plans for them to be shipped by boat to the United States and for one of his associates — a very short Icelandic man named Steven — to deliver them to The Times headquarters at 11 a.m. on Oct. 3. Kessler warned that he was erecting a maze of security systems. First, a Times employee would need to use a special thumb drive to access a proprietary communications system. Then Kessler’s colleague would transmit a code to decrypt the files. If his instructions weren’t followed precisely, Kessler said, the information would self-destruct. Specialists at The Times set up a number of “air-gapped” laptops — disconnected from the internet — in a windowless, padlocked meeting room. Reporters cleared their schedules to sift through thousands of hours of surveillance footage. On the morning of the scheduled delivery, Kessler sent a series of frantic texts. Disaster had struck. A fire was burning. The duplicate servers were destroyed. One of his team members was missing. He was fleeing to Kyiv. Two hours later, Kessler was in touch with Mr. Pottinger and didn’t mention any emergency. Kessler said he hoped that the footage would help pry $1 billion in settlements out of their targets, and asked him to detail how the lawyers could extract the money. “Could you put together a hypothetical situation,” Kessler wrote, not something “set in stone but close to what your thinking.” In one, which he called a “standard model” for legal settlements, Mr. Pottinger said the money would be split among his clients, the Astria Foundation, Kessler and the lawyers, who would get up to 40 percent. In the second hypothetical, Mr. Pottinger wrote, the lawyers would approach the videotaped men. The men would then hire the lawyers, ensuring that they would not get sued, and “make a contribution to a nonprofit as part of the retainer.” “No client is actually involved in this structure,” Mr. Pottinger said, noting that the arrangement would have to be “consistent with and subject to rules of ethics.” “Thank you very much,” Kessler responded. Mr. Pottinger later said that the scenario would have involved him representing a victim, settling a case and then representing the victim’s alleged abuser. He said it was within legal boundaries. (He also said he had meant to type “No client lawsuit is actually involved.”) Such legal arrangements are not unheard-of. Lawyers representing a former Fox News producer who had accused Bill O’Reilly of sexual harassment reached a settlement in which her lawyers agreed to work for Mr. O’Reilly after the dispute. But legal experts generally consider such setups to be unethical because they can create conflicts between the interests of the lawyers and their original clients. ‘I just pulled it out of my behind’ The lawyers held out hope of getting Kessler’s materials. But weeks passed, and nothing arrived. At one point, Mr. Pottinger volunteered to meet Kessler anywhere — including Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia. “I still believe he is what he purported to be,” Mr. Boies wrote in an email on Nov. 7. “I have to evaluate people for my day job, and he seemed too genuine to be a fake, and I very much want him to be real.” He added, “I am not unconscious of the danger of wanting to believe something too much.” Ten days later, Mr. Boies arrived at The Times for an on-camera interview. It was a bright, chilly Sunday, and Mr. Boies had just flown in from Ecuador, where he said he was doing work for the finance ministry. Reporters wanted to ask him plainly if his and Mr. Pottinger’s conduct with Kessler crossed ethical lines. Would they have brokered secret settlements that buried evidence of wrongdoing? Did the notion of extracting huge sums from men in exchange for keeping sex tapes hidden meet the definition of extortion? Mr. Boies said the answer to both questions was no. He said he and Mr. Pottinger operated well within the law. They only intended to pursue legal action on behalf of their clients — in other words, that they were a long way from extortion. In any case, he said, he and Mr. Pottinger had never authenticated any of the imagery or identified any of the supposed victims, much less contacted any of the men on the “hot list.” Then The Times showed Mr. Boies some of the text exchanges between Mr. Pottinger and Kessler. Mr. Boies showed a flash of anger and said it was the first time he was seeing them. By the end of the nearly four-hour interview, Mr. Boies had concluded that Kessler was probably a con man: “I think that he was a fraudster who was just trying to set things up.” And he argued that Kessler had baited Mr. Pottinger into writing things that looked more nefarious than they really were. He acknowledged that Mr. Pottinger had used “loose language” in some of his messages that risked creating the impression that the lawyers were plotting to monetize evidence of abuse. Several days later, Mr. Boies returned for another interview and was more critical of Mr. Pottinger, especially the hypothetical plans that he had described to Kessler. “Having looked at all that stuff in context, I would not have said that,” he said. How did Mr. Boies feel about Mr. Pottinger invoking his name in messages to Kessler? “I don’t like it,” he said. But Mr. Boies stopped short of blaming Mr. Pottinger for the whole mess. “I’m being cautious not to throw him under the bus more than I believe is accurate,” he said. His longtime P.R. adviser, Dawn Schneider, who had been pushing for a more forceful denunciation, dropped her pen, threw up her arms and buried her head in her hands. In a separate interview, The Times asked Mr. Pottinger about his correspondence with Kessler. The lawyer said that his messages shouldn’t be taken at face value because, in reality, he had been deceiving Kessler all along — “misleading him deliberately in order to get the servers.” The draft retention agreement that Mr. Pottinger had given to Kessler in September was unsigned and never meant to be honored, Mr. Pottinger said. And he never intended to sell photos of Mr. Barak to Mr. Adelson. “I just pulled it out of my behind,” he said, describing it as an act to impress Kessler. As for the two hypotheticals about how to get money out of the men on the list, Mr. Pottinger said, he never planned to do what he carefully articulated. “I didn’t owe Patrick honesty about this,” he said. Mr. Pottinger said that he had only one regret — that “we did not get the information that this liar said he had.” He added, “I’m building legal cases here. I’m trying not to engage too much in shenanigans. I wish I didn’t, but this guy was very unusual.”
Greta Thunberg tells cheering crowd 'we will make sure we put world leaders against the wall' if they do not tackle global warming | 'The adults are behaving as if there is no tomorrow but there is a tomorrow, it is the tomorrow where our young people will live & we have to fight for that tomorrow." Comments | Link Justin Trudeau moves forward with ban on LGBT+ conversion therapy across Canada Comments | Link Greta Thunberg apologises after saying politicians should be ‘put against the wall’. 'That’s what happens when you improvise speeches in a second language’ the 16-year-old said following criticism Comments | Link
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Brave Browser Review – What Makes Brave Browser Special?
Understanding the Brave Browser Model
Brave is a more-or-less standard browser that lets users browse, run web apps and display online content. It is free to download and use. Furthermore, Brave remembers site authentication information. When Brave joined the market, it caused a buzz due to its unusual business model. The default ad blocking was viewed by many as a threat to content creators. It changed the traditional way of digital advert delivery. Brave also managed to realize the dream of getting paid to browse.
The Brave Browser User Interface
https://preview.redd.it/f6ciyn35frh31.png?width=1034&format=png&auto=webp&s=03a1c5c7975830b14fe28bb613388d6038e56378 Brave offers a clean and crisp interface that is intuitive to use. It has all the elements you would expect in your ideal browser. Furthermore, Brave’s individual tabs support icons for quick identification, and hovering the cursor over a tab offers details on the page in that tab without having to click on the tab and activate it. The browser also displays statistics about the content the browser has blocked. These statistics are very useful. Furthermore, it displays photos, the current time and shortcuts to your favorite sites. Like other websites, one would expect these features to have an effect on speed. However, this is not the case. Brave is very easy to use, with a streamlined design and the useful option to preview the content of tabs
Brave Rewards System For Content Creators and Users
https://preview.redd.it/gle1dcj9frh31.jpg?width=810&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=18d3567249e761af2be4645a0ded76664da1e0f9 Content creators depend on ads to sustain their operations. However, the ads are not displayed on Brave browser. So how does Brave browser support online publishers? The browser has a unique approach when it comes to compensating of creators. Rewarding is done through the Brave Ads network and user donations. Publishers are required to register with the network before qualifying for revenue. Registered publishers earn 55% of the replaced ad revenue. Brave comes with an inbuilt BAT wallet. This wallet enables users to support their favorite websites. Users can load the wallet and allocate a specified amount of BAT to their preferred sites. The wallet can be funded through Bitcoin, Litecoin, Ethereum, and BAT token. Credit card holders use payment processor Uphold. You can set a monthly budget of BAT to be automatically distributed to sites you frequently visit. You also have the power to set the percentage to be contributed. Brave users are not able to view any ads but still, support their favorite website. For users, you can earn in BAT by browsing Brave enabled sites. If users consent to replace usual adverts, with anonymous adverts from Brave, they get paid in Basic Attention Token (BAT). A single user gets 15% of the revenue. The revenue depends on the time you spend on Brave Browser. However, you have to enable Brave ads because the browser blocks all ads by default. Before receiving any payments, the BAT token wallet needs to be activated first. For users who don’t want to support any website, they neither earn nor contribute. They enjoy fast browsing.
Why Brave Settled For BAT
https://preview.redd.it/kv0t9qqcfrh31.png?width=1600&format=png&auto=webp&s=b216b6a7ec9a4a6ed4441040db84027450f367f1 Current delivery of digital ads relies on tracking browsing history, cookies, search question, and third parties. Brave does not support these tactics. With the use of BAT, the role of intermediaries and tracking is eliminated from the inventory catalog of current ads. Integration of BAT into the browser involves implementing BAT Ads system. The system displays ads to users based on locally stored information. With the data, ads targeting is done locally. This Brave Browser model promotes privacy. The browsing history is kept private, as all data required for ad-matching never leaves your system. We also have quality ads matching. Wrong ad matching is one of the reasons why some users hate ads. With BAT model, a user can select the ads he or she wants to see. Brave’s BAT platform shields the anonymity of users while assuring the authenticity of their viewing. It is, therefore, safe to say that BAT represents a fundamental rethinking of the way digital ads are delivered. By the time of writing this article, BAT had a market capitalization of $244,798,134. Compared to the dollar, BAT is valued at $0.196773.
How Is Brave Browser Funded?
Brave Software’s financial life is shredded in privacy. However, the company managed to raise $35 million in just seconds by selling the BAT cryptocurrency to investors. Brave has other revenue generation means as it kept a third of the 1.5 billion BATs and as starter seed for browser users’ wallets (300 million BATs). At the current BAT value, Brave’s 200 million equaled just over $70 million. The money will be channeled towards establishing a Blockchain-based digital advertising system.
Benefits of Brave Browser
The brave browser is gaining popularity. It has been viewed as the next Google chrome. Brave appears to be the solution to challenges that come with regular browsers. Here are some of the unique benefits of using Brave. We’ve also made a Brave vs Google Chrome comparison – you can check that out too and see our unbiased opinion about Brave and it evolution compared to Google’s giant.
Default Ad Blocker
https://preview.redd.it/9u2bc2qhfrh31.png?width=1402&format=png&auto=webp&s=7f85f0c79ec03d51585da08f36d0a63926fec222 Brave blocks ads automatically. Users are no longer required to search the web for a perfect ad blocker. The auto-blocking protects your device from malware and extensive tracking by advertisers. Brave is also working on a plan to replace ads that appear harmful. Tracking ads by Brave is accurate. Users are served with the right ads because Brave does the tracking using local data. If an ad is irrelevant to the user, it is pulled down. You get the appropriate ads based on this model. A user’s data stays within the device since we have no third parties involved. While Brave blocks third-party cookies, the first party cookies are not blocked by default. Users have the option to prevent or enable cookies on a given website. However, Brave does not block ads displayed in search results. You will be able to see AdWords advertisements within Google’s results. This is because Ad blocking extensions don’t stymie search ads either.
Improved Privacy During Browsing
Blocking of malicious ads automatically allows safe browsing. Brave does not have access to identifiable user data. The anonymity aggregated ad campaign related data is used for accounting. However, this data cannot be traced back to a user’s device. Brave also comes with additional tactics to boost privacy while browsing. The incorporation of HTTPS everywhere allows usage of web encryption whenever available. The fingerprinting feature bars third parties from tracking your activity. This feature can be activated in the settings tab.
Brave is Faster
Brave’s load speeds emerge on top. Fast browsing is supported by Brave’s lack of thirds party ads. You, therefore, have less content to download before accessing your favorite website. However, Brave’s rendering speeds come a bit after Google Chrome and Mozilla.
You Get Paid To Browser – If You Want
The concept of getting paid for browsing has been a dream. However, Brave browser has changed the game. All you have to do is to enable Brave ads. View the ads and get 15% of the revenue. For content creators, you are supported by users who love your content. All payments are in the form of BAT tokens.
How Does Brave Browser Work?
The brave browser is available on iOS, Android, macOS, Windows, and Linux platforms. Users on these platforms can browse securely, and fast. It accomplishes this without using a lot of your computer’s memory. Unlike most common browsers, Brave does not use much RAM. Brave uses at least 170MB of your RAM. It is important to note that Brave is a chromium based browser. Browsers built on this platform are known to consume a lot of memory, but Brave stands out.
Brave’s Use of Chrome extensions
Brave is set up on the Chromium platform. Chromium is an open-source system that also powers popular browsers like Google Chrome and soon Microsoft Edge. Based on the Chromium capability, you can almost use all Chrome extensions on Brave. The extensions on Chrome can be added to Brave through the Chrome Web Store. Make sure you read messages accompanying extensions carefully. It is up to you to make responsible decisions when installing 3rd party extensions with respect to your data. You can enable, disable, remove and view additional details/options for your installed extensions in the extensions window. Pros
Interface. Brave offers a simple, clean and intuitive interface.
Speed. Based on the default ad blocker, Brave’s speed is fast.
Ad and tracker blocking. Brave’s ad-blocking is a new one in the industry.
Privacy and security. Along with its blocking features, Brave’s anti-tracking tools are among the best.
Allows Chrome extensions
Brave Rewards. Brave’s opt-in ad display and compensation program not clear to many people.
Who is Behind Brave?
Since 2018, Brave browser users have grown by over 450%. Elsewhere BAT’s active users have grown from 1 million per month in January 2018 to a total of 5.5 million active users in January 2019. As seen above, Brave works along with the Basic Attention Token (BAT). In March 2019, Brave reached over 20 million downloads on the Google Play store for Android devices.
Disk Digger Pro Apk || DiskDigger Importance || Recover Lost Files
In the Present scenario, Technology is growing too fast and we all are experiencing that our smartphone, PC, and Laptops carrying various files with the help of SD cards and internal memory. We will think that our files are in very secure places but if any file deleted unexpectedly then what you will do?. Don't worry, I already told you that tech is growing as fast as it can. Here I'm going to discuss the bestdata recovery services aka (DiskDigger) which are a perfect example of it. Let's go down to get more details of DiskDigger(Deep file recovery from any drive). DiskDigger is a tool which can recover deleted files like photos, documents, music, video and much more. DiskDigger Features: DiskDigger can recover lost files from most types of media that your computer can read: hard disks, USB flash drives, memory cards, CDs, DVDs, and floppy disks. (Note: Make sure that you have to connect your device with a USB port to recover lost data from Android and IOS devices ). And one more important thing is you have to download the diskdigger app on your android phone to recover lost files. Suppose if your Android device uses a microSD card for saving the data, please remove the card and connect it directly to your PC using a card reader, so that you can scan it directly using DiskDigger for Windows.) DiskDigger has two processes which you have to choose every time while scanning a disk. These methods are named as “dig deep” and “dig deeper“. Dig Deep:
Undelete files from FAT (FAT12, FAT16, FAT32), NTFS, and exFAT partitions.
Recover any type of file.
Filter recoverable files by name and size.
Sort recoverable files by name, size, date, and directory.
Scan (carve) entire disk for traces of specific file types.
View recoverable files as a list, or as thumbnail previews.
Thumbnails will show previews of image files, album art from MP3 and WMA files, and icons from executable files!
Selecting a recoverable file brings up a full preview of the file (insofar as possible). For image files, it will show the image (with pan and zoom). For document files, it will show a text-only preview of the document. For certain audio files, it will allow you to play back the sound.
Previews of JPG and TIFF files will show EXIF information (camera model, date taken, sensor settings, etc.).
Previews of MP3 files will show ID3 information (artist, album, genre, etc.).
Previews of ZIP files will show a list of files contained in the archive.
Able to scan virtual disk image files:
E01 and EWF files (Expert Witness Format)
VMDK files (VMware disk image)
VHD files (Microsoft Virtual Hard Disk)
VDI files (VirtualBox disk image)
Direct binary disk images (acquired with dd or similar tools)
When digging deeper, ability to start scanning from a specific location on the disk.
When previewing files, the program optionally shows the first 4K bytes of the file as a hex dump.
Hello! My name is Vladimir Hovanskiy. I am a Google Adwords manager at Platinum, a business facilitator of new generation, providing STO and ICO marketing services. We already created best STO blockchain platform on the market and consulted more than 700 projects. Here’s the proof 😎 Platinum.fund We are more than proud that we not only promote but also share our knowledge with the students of the UBAI. Here you can learn how to do security token offering and initial coin offering! Now I want to share some cool info on the purpose and role of tokens within the Blockchain ecosystem at the ICO stage. Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) History Initial Coin Offerings (ICOs) are a means of fundraising for the initial capital needed to get new projects off the ground within the cryptocurrency ecosystem. More often than not, Bitcoin and Ethereum, are used to buy a quantity of project tokens. However, new projects are also being launched on alternative Blockchain platforms such as NEO or WANchain, wherein the “parent” chain’s tokens will be used to fund these ICOs. Pre-launch, ICO tokens are endorsed as functional currency in the project ecosystem. After a project’s ICO, it is available on exchanges, and then the market determines the value of those tokens. The main benefit of using the ICO funding system is that it avoids the prohibitive amount of time and expense incurred by launching a startup in the conventional method, by way of Initial Public Offering (IPO). The lengthy and costly process of ensuring regulatory compliance in different jurisdictions often makes the IPO format unfeasible for small companies. Thus, the ICO method of fundraising is far more attractive as a means of crowd funding for the project. But at the same time, an ICO is certainly riskier for the investor. It is important to note the different stages of the token sale. Token prices generally escalate the closer the token gets to its listing date. Projects often seek funding from angel investors even before the date of the private pre-sale is set, though some ICOs do go straight to pre-sale. After potential initial investment has been sought from angel investors, pre-sale begins. Usually there will be a 15–30% discount from the public sale price. The main-sale begins after the pre-sale has concluded. At that time, normal everyday crypto enthusiasts, with no connections to the team, may buy into the project at pretty close to the ground floor price. Angel investors and pre-sale investors sometimes receive quite large discounts from main sale prices, but their tokens are locked up for varying amounts of time, to prevent dumping, or selling all their tokens for a quick profit at the time of listing. Today the vast majority of ICOs make use of the Ethereum blockchain and the ERC-20 token. The very first token sale was arranged by Mastercoin, a Bitcoin fork, in July 2013. Ethereum soon followed in early 2014, raising 3700 BTC in only 12 hours (equivalent to $2.3 million at that time, and just under $35 million today). Before late 2015 there were sporadic ICOs, with Augur, NXT and Factom all successfully raising funds. 2016 was the year that the ICO format grew to truly disrupt the Venture Capital industry. There were 64 ICOs in 2016 which cumulatively raised $103 million USD. Tremendous Success & Why Real World Case Study The ICON (ICX) Initial coin offering is an example of a project that reaped the rewards of a token sale done with precision of execution and clarity of vision. The project promised to build a world-wide decentralized network that would allow Blockchains of different governances to transact with one another without a centralized authority, and with as few barriers as possible. ICX offered fair and clear tokenomics, with 1 Ether buying 2500 ICX, and with 1 ETH costing approximately 250 dollars when the ICO began on September 18th. 50% of the total amount of tokens were put up for public sale, 400,230,000 out of a total of 800,460,000, equating to a fundraising goal of 150,000 Ether. One of the core reasons for the project’s spectacular success was the incredibly distinguished background of those involved, and the foundation the project had in many years of stellar achievement. ICON was originally a project developed by “The Loop”, a joint venture between DAYLI financial group and three Korean Universities. They lead the Korea Financial Investment Blockchain Consortium, one of the largest organizations of its kind in the world, boasting members including Samsung Securities. The Loop had already implemented Blockchain solutions for high profile clients well before ICX was born, including completing a KYC/AML authentication smart contract platform for Korea Financial Investment Consortium. Real World Example of Failure & Why Case Study The risk involved in starting your own company is huge. Over 75% of startups eventually fail, according to the Harvard Business School study by Shikhar Ghosh. The study’s findings show the rate of failure for new companies is roughly 50% after 5 years, and over 75% after 10. Shikhar Ghosh identifies the following issues as the most common factors in start-up failure: -Insufficient Market Demand -Insolvency -Wrong Team -Got beat by competition -Pricing/Cost issues -Poor Product -Need for or Lack of business model -Ineffective Marketing -Disregarding Customer desires The statistics concerning rate of failure for conventional business startups pale in comparison to the number of crypto startups that fail according to Tokendata. They are one of the most rigorous ICO trackers, recording 46% of the 902 ICO crowdsale projects initiated in 2017 as failing by the time of writing. Of these 46%, 142 collapsed before the end of the funding stage, and a further 276 had either “exit scammed” (took the money and ran) or slowly faded into eventual obscurity. With no shortage of failed and abortive projects to look into, we thought it would be more helpful to look into an ICO that was mismanaged and unsuccessful in terms of its execution, rather than being fraudulent, or terminally mismanaged. Real World Example of Failure & Why §3 Tezos was designed as a “new decentralized Blockchain that governs itself by establishing a true digital commonwealth”. The project was a partnership between the husband and wife team of Kathleen and Arthur Breitman, and a Swiss foundation run by Johann Gevers. They had a novel idea of “formal verification”, a technique that mathematically proves the veracity of code governing transactions and heightens security of smart contracts. That idea was wholeheartedly endorsed by investors, resulting in $232 million USD raised in the 2017 crowdsale. Trouble arose after the Breitmans asked the head of the Swiss foundation they were in partnership with to step down. In Gever’s words, the Breitman’s were attempting “to bypass Swiss legal structure and take over control of the foundation”. The resulting 6 class action lawsuits that were spawned from the wreckage of one of the most successful ICOs of all time have yet to be fully resolved at the time of writing, though Gevers has stepped down and a new leadership team is in place. The Tezos Network has a prospective launch date of somewhere around Q3 2018. The debacle, though not terminal to the prospects of the Tezos network, provides a cautionary tale about the need for a clearly defined leadership structure and plan for the allocation of funds after an ICO. It is entirely possible that the Tezos project could have ridden the late 2017 market euphoria to sit near the top of the cryptocurrency hierarchy if boardroom strife could have been avoided. Real World Example of Failure & Why §4 Projects often also “pivot” from one focus or project to another. More often than not, teams change the project name entirely, even while retaining the same core team, to try for a successful venture one more time. One such project is Chain Trade Token (CTT) which, while technically speaking, not yet a “deadcoin”, shows all the signs of shutting down operations within a few months, and “pivoting” into a new project. The CTT project aimed to be the “first blockchain-based platform for the trading of futures and options on food and raw materials (aka commodity derivatives)”. But through a combination of a non-existent social media presence, and a distinct lack of urgency in securing listings beyond decentralized exchanges, the lofty ambitions of the top-level team were left unrealized. The team has supposedly split their operations from solely Chain Trade, to a former business endeavors, and the Nebula Decentralized Exchange. The project leaders then offered a 1-for-1 token swap which has been accepted by the vast majority of CTT holders. The ICO Process Before even researching the particular strengths and weaknesses of any specific project in which you may want to invest, it is important to know the overall processes of the ICO crowdfunding method. This will allow you to avoid any potential pitfalls if you do decide to move forward and invest money into a particular idea or project. How does an ICO happen? Stage One: Token sale details are set: This takes place usually after release of the whitepaper, and the presentation of a project to prospective investors in forums and on social media. Stage Two: Whitelisting for private sale begins: The vast majority of all ICOs have instituted KYC checks for investors which usually involve uploading a photograph of your passport or driving license along with a selfie holding the ID. Did you know? Participation in ICOs has proven to be a regulatory nightmare in some localities. Most token sales restrict contributions from investors in China and the USA entirely, though accredited investors may participate in the USA in some cases. Stage Three: Private/Pre-sale states: Typically, 10% of tokens will be offered to early investors at a 10–30% discount. These select few investors will likely have a close association with the team. But not all projects have a pre-sale round, some go straight to public sale. Stage Four: Whitelisting for Public/Main sale starts: The same format used for pre-sale investors is used for public sale investors, though it is a regular occurrence to see main sale KYC checks closed early due to overwhelming demand. An investor must then register a contribution wallet address. That is the address used to send cryptocurrency from, to buy the ICO tokens, and then also into which you will receive your purchased tokens. This wallet address must be a non-exchange wallet, like Blockchain.info bitcoin wallet, or MyEtherWallet for ERC-20. You already understand from the prior lesson that making a mistake with your wallet address may mean you lose the tokens forever as well as the BTC or ETH you used to purchase them. Copying and pasting your cryptocurrency public key into the whitelist wallet form is the next task to complete. And then, as the investor, you wait for confirmation of successful ICO registration from the team. Stage Five: Public sale starts: Commonly on a specific date, though sometimes for a specific period of time. If you are interested in participating in an ICO, it is important to make your contribution as quickly as possible, or you risk sending your ETH or BTC after the hard cap has been reached, resulting in your funds being sent back. This refund can sometimes take many days, or even weeks in times of high market activity. Did you know? In 2017 it was not unheard of to find ICOs that had originally scheduled their ICO period for many weeks, but then they met with such high demand that they could close their crowdsale in a matter of hours or even in just a few minutes! Stage Six: Tokens are allocated to successful participant investor wallets, and trading can begin on some decentralized exchanges like IDEX, or EtherDelta in the case of Ethereum based tokens. Tokens will be sent to and received by the wallet addresses from which the investor contributions were made. Stage Seven: Tokens are listed on mainstream exchanges: The tokens will then be listed on the exchanges with which the teams have negotiated listing, prior to or during the sale. It can cost huge amounts of money to list on large exchanges like Bitfinex Bittrex, Huobi or Binance, so usually smaller projects will not be listed on top 10 exchanges so quickly. As tokens are listed on more and more exchanges, their price usually rises because more and more investors are exposed to opportunities to buy that particular token. Evaluating a Blockchain Use Case Evaluating a particular use case for Blockchain technology, and thus how successful an ICO project’s ambitions might be in a particular market, is not a simple endeavor. As demonstrated in the graphic below, Blockchain technology has nearly limitless potential to be applied to a great variety of business areas, but as an ICO investor, you are looking for projects that have the potential to deliver significant long-term success. In the currently saturated ICO environment, some use cases have more potential than others. Ascertaining which use case is likely to have long term success is a key distinction. Also, we must recognize that businesses and corporate entities may be overeager to experiment with this new Blockchain technology, whether or not usage of the technology is actually advisable or profitable for their particular purpose. The main questions to ask when analyzing specific solutions proposed by the project are: What are the problems posed and the solutions offered? Does this particular area of business need a Blockchain solution? That is, is a Blockchain solution in fact superior to the current way this particular business operates? Is the use of Blockchain in this specific instance feasible and applicable? What are competitors doing about Blockchain projects in this same area? A Blockchain network provides a shared, replicated, secured, immutable and verifiable data ledger. The implication for use case analysis: Shared and replicated: participants have a copy of the ledger and many people can view it or work on it Secured: Secured through cryptography Verifiable: Business rules are associated with all interactions that occur on the network Immutable: Transactions (records) cannot be modified or deleted, therefore a verifiable audit trail is maintained by the network So, with all this considered, what should we look for with regard to a possible business use case that would be best solved using Blockchain technology? 1. Data exchange that has trust issues i.e. businesses transacting with one another. Trust must be established through a multitude of verification processes with regards to employees and products. These processes increase operational cost. Example: Digital voting. 2. Any potential business process involving data storage, or compliance and risk data that get audited. Blockchain solutions would provide the regulators a real-time view of information. Example: Supply chain solutions like VeChain or WaltonChain. The possibility of close to zero operational loss would of course be attractive to any business. 3. All kinds of asset transactions. A Blockchain network, with its tamper-proof ledger, validating traceable and trackable transactions, could save many different industries untold amounts of money. Example: Tokenization of assets e.g. Jibrel Network or Polymath Purpose of Tokens Within the cryptocurrency ecosystem, the definition and role of a token iswidely understood. They represent programmable units of currency that sit atop a particular Blockchain, and they are part of a smart contract “logic” specific to a certain application. In the business sphere, a token can be defined as a unit of value that a project or business venture creates to enable it to self-govern. And the business venture also allows token users to connect and collaborate with its business products, while facilitating the sharing of rewards to all of its stakeholders. A token can also be described in a more general sense as a type of privately issued currency. In the past it was solely within the purview of governments to issue currency and set the terms of its governance. With the advent of Blockchain technology we now have businesses and organizations offering forms of digital money over which they, not the government or central bank, have control of the terms of operations and issuance. Wide scale adoption of these mechanisms could fundamentally alter the global economy. This is like the creation of self-sustaining, mini-economies in any sector of business or life, via a specific token or currency. Fun Fact: Tokens of the particular Blockchain upon which the project is launched will usually have to be bought in order to be exchanged for ICO tokens, hence it is important for traders and investors to be aware of the schedule for upcoming ICOs. ETH is usually the token used for exchange because the majority of ICOs launch on the Ethereum Blockchain. But this is not always the case. During January 2018, two NEO token ICOs, both the Key TKY and Ontology ICOs, were being carried out, and this caused the NEO cryptocurrency to spike to its all-time high in excess of $160 USD. Since the product or project is more often than not in its embryonic stage at the time of the ICO crowdfunding process, the ICO token’s true function and purpose is in most cases yet to be realized. At the ICO stage the tokens can usually be grouped together into one of three categories. Knowing how to distinguish these categories involves determining the specific nature and function of the token around which the project is centered. The main and crucial distinction, is whether or not a token is a security, and therefore subject to securities registration requirements. ICO Stage Token Categories Howey Test: This is the test created by the US Supreme Court to ascertain whether certain transactions qualify as “investment contracts”. If they are found to fall within this classification, then under the Securities Act of 1933 and the Exchange Act of 1934, those transactions are considered “securities” and participants must adhere to registration and disclosure requirements. One of the most important and amazing considerations of the effect of Blockchain technology is that normal people with a computer science background are now empowered to make decisions and offer products and services that previously only licensed financial institutions were able to do. This is a very complex and complicated situation with serious ramifications for anyone involved. One thing to note well is that ordinary participants and actors in this arena can easily commit white-collar crime, violating serious securities laws, without even realizing it. If a token falls within the US legal definition of “Investment Contract” then you must adhere to US regulations. For that reason, many ICOs simply do not want to sell to US based investors, perhaps until all the rules and regulations are clarified. Security Tokens The broad and varying definition of the term “security” is a regulatory minefield. This has always been true for traditional financial products, and now it is especially true for the as yet unregulated cryptocurrency market. In the case of SEC V. Howey, parameters were established to determine whether or not a particular financial arrangement could be classified as a security and thus be subject to securities regulations. Cooley LLP Fintech Team Leader Marco Santori has said, an arrangement is a security if it involves “an investment of money, and a common enterprise, with the expectation of profit, primarily from the efforts of others.” Investors have the option of accessing a huge range of security tokens through ICOs. Prime examples are the gold backed DigixDao (DGD) and CProp (still in crowd funding stage). A security token is fundamentally different from the currently available ICO project tokens in that it provides a legal and enforceable ownership of a company’s profits and voice in its governance much like common stock traded on any exchange. If security tokens are the next step in the evolution of crypto-finance, real estate, stocks, venture capital, and commodities can all be tokenized. The traditional markets could be fully connected to the Blockchain. Financial assets would available to anyone in the world, not just licensed or accredited investors. That is one aspect of Fintech, the financial revolution taking place today, as Blockchain technology clashes with traditional finance. Equity Tokens One exciting application of smart contracts on the Ethereum Network is the potential for startups to distribute equity tokens through initial coin offerings. That would reduce the hurdles that an average person has to face in order to take part in the early stages of a company’s development. And, democratic governance of a project could be conducted in a transparent manner through voting on the Blockchain. As of yet, few startups have attempted to conduct equity token sales for fear of falling afoul of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in the US. But many Venture Capital insiders are bullish on the prospect of equity tokens taking a central role in the crypto finance industry, when and as the legal issues are resolved. For example, the Delaware State legislature recently passed a bill enabling companies to maintain shareholder lists on the Blockchain. That is one major step to enable Blockchain based stock trading. Lawyers also generally believe it is only a matter of time before the regulations are clarified. Did you know? Important consideration: The Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 made it unfeasibly expensive for smaller companies to be listed on exchanges, causing a halving in the number of IPOs between 1996 and 2016 (7322 to 3671). In 2017 there was an almost 5-fold increase in the number of ICOs, from 43 to 210, with the 2017 volume already being eclipsed in the first 5 months of 2018. Utility Tokens However, given that this area is still a regulatory nightmare for people planning to issue security and equity tokens, many projects attempt to ensure that the tokens within their specific model fall under the definition of Utility Tokens rather than securities, so as to avoid the SEC regulations altogether. If a token is imbued with a certain functionality and use within the Blockchain infrastructure of that particular project, the token can avoid being labelled as a security, and thus render SEC regulations inapplicable. Just this week in fact, the SEC made the long-awaited and momentous decision that Ether was not a security. In the words of William Hinman, director of the Securities and Exchange Commission division of corporate finance, “Putting aside the fundraising that accompanied the creation of Ether, based on my understanding of the present state of Ether, the Ethereum network and its decentralized structure, current offers and sales of Ether are not securities transactions.” This means that Ethereum, in fact, fails the Howey test, which is exactly the decision the crypto world wanted. Hinman said, “When the efforts of the third party are no longer a key factor for determining the enterprise’s success, material information asymmetries recede,” Hinman said. “The ability to identify an issuer or promoter to make the requisite disclosures becomes difficult, and less meaningful.” We will now cover various use cases that projects have been adopting up to now in order to get their tokens classified as utility tokens rather than securities. Voting Rights Some coins portray themselves as a company with tokens being held in a way that is analogous to voting shares of a stock. One coin held is equal to one vote. This form of token utility has a major flaw in that so-called whales (people with huge amounts of a particular cryptocurrency) can manipulate any poll conducted. The cryptocurrencies Aragon and Lykke are examples of projects that have written voting rights into the structure of their code. In-App Reward: Another common tactic to evade the security label has been the addition of in-app rewards to the functionality of a particular token. The Basic Attention Token (BAT) is the unit of currency for use with the project browser named “Brave”. The BAT is a unit of account for the advertisers, publishers and users of the platform. Filecoin, the cloud storage project that raised a record $257 million through their ICO, pays other people or companies for use of their spare storage space. Some of the many rights afforded to token holders in various Blockchain projects are described by the graphic below. Token Roles Function The token can be used as a mechanism through which user experience is enhanced, enabling such actions as connection with users, or joining a broader network. It may also be used as an incentive for beginning usage or for on-boarding. Examples include Dfinity and Steemit. Value Exchange: In its most basic usage, a token is a unit of value exchange within a specific app or market. This usually is made up of features that allow users to earn tokens through real work or passive work (sharing data, allowing use of storage space) and to spend them on services or internal functions within the specific market ecosystem created by that organization. Augur and KIK, amongst countless others, are projects that have implemented this functionality into their tokenomics. Toll: The token can also be used for getting onto the Blockchain infrastructure, or for powering decentralized applications run on that particular Blockchain. This ensures that users have “skin in the game”. Tolls can be derived from running smart contracts, paying a security deposit, or just usage fees. Examples include Bitcoin and Ethereum. Currency: Seeing as the particular platform or app is designed with a view towards functioning in synergy with a particular token, the token is an extremely efficient means of payment and transaction engine, resulting in frictionless transactions. This means that companies can become their own payment processors and no longer have to rely on the often unwieldy stages of conventional financial settlement involving trusted third parties in the form of banks and credit card companies. Rights: Owning a token bequests certain rights upon the holder, such as product usage, voting, access to restricted markets, and dividends (e.g.: GAS for holding NEO). Though most businesses are trying to avoid fitting the definition of a security laid out in the Howey Test, the right to real ownership of a particular asset is sometimes granted as a result of holding a token, for example DigixDAO or Tezos. Comparison to Traditional IPO and Equity Capital Raisings Despite the similarity of the acronyms and the derivation of one from the other, Initial Coin Offerings and Initial Public Offerings are very different methods of fundraising. The distinction is not limited simply to the fact that IPOs are used in conventional business, and ICOs are associated with cryptocurrency. Through ICO’s, companies in their early stages issue digital tokens on a Blockchain and those tokens act as units of value for use within the ecosystem created by the project. They have many other uses, but it is also fair to say they are analogous to shares offered in an Initial Public offering. In an IPO, shareholdings are distributed to investors through underwriters, usually investment banks. But in the case of ICO token sales, companies often do not even have an actual product to show. Often, all that there is a whitepaper, evidence of the partnerships involved and the particular social-media infrastructure they have established. IPO’s take place when a more well-established company floats shares on a stock exchange. The company would have a well-established history of success and significant reasons to expect a bright future. In the vast majority of cases, an ICO is used for a new company with no such history, just trying to get off the ground. Another important difference is the expected return in exchange for the investment. Companies engaging in IPOs may offer participants dividend paying stocks which result in various levels of return depending on the success of the company after the shares are issued. An ICO however can offer no such guaranteed return. When buying tokens in an ICO, you do so with no promise of return. An investor who holds the tokens of a particular project does so with the promise, rather than an assurance, of future success. The main benefit to investors taking part in Initial Coin Offerings, compared to Initial Public Offerings, is the need for only basic Know Your Customer checks in the case of the ICO, compared to the costly, complex and time-consuming regulatory obstacles that must be traversed in an IPO. In the case of Initial Public Offerings, a business must obtain authorization from a number of entities before the act of “going public”. Prior to an IPO, companies are not obliged to disclose so much of their internal records or accounting. It is not so complicated to make a private company in the United States. But in the run up to going public, the company must form a board of directors, make their records auditable to the relevant authorities in one or more jurisdictions, and prepare to make quarterly reports to the SEC (or equivalent). Relevant Factors to Consider in ICO process When analyzing the chances of success for a specific project, and the likelihood of a favorable return on investment in the long term, it is essential to break down the project into its constituent parts, and evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of each part individually. An effective investigation and analysis would start with the team and white paper. Consider the stage the project is at,and VC investments in the project. That would lead to a good initial idea of the actual progress thus far. Next, evaluate the social media presence and the credentials of the community that has formed around the core team. If a compelling case is made by the team, (e.g.: via an in-depth dive into the use case), and the tokenomics, distribution schedule, potential competitors, as well as the team’s awareness of any future business or regulatory concerns all check out; then the ICO might present a good opportunity for investment. In the following slides we tackle each of these considerations in order so you will be able to evaluate an ICO’s worth and assign a grade for the success of each project. Relevant Factors to Consider in ICO process The Team First and most important, we need evaluate the background and experience of the team, the people involved in the project. Well-established developers, for example, will likely have LinkedIn profiles demonstrating their previous endeavors and occupations, from which we can judge their suitability to the project and the likelihood of the team’s success. The LinkedIn profile is a point of reference for professional accomplishments and official positions. But we can also learn more about a person from their personal accounts on Twitter, Facebook, and Medium etc. That is also a good way to follow along with the progress of the project. By investigating team members through as many means as possible, you will know how long they have been involved in cryptocurrency. If they have been around and active for a long time, they are that much more likely to be knowledgeable and capable of making better quality decisions in this business. It goes without saying that it is a huge red flag if it is too difficult to find information about the team members online, and worse still if the team members are anonymous. Relevant Factors to Consider in ICO process A good Whitepaper gives a detailed description of the project, the problems the team is going to solve, the timeframe projected, and methods to be used in the implementation of their ideas. If, in answering the question about what the project actually does, it seems the team is presenting ideas that are too complicated or advanced to understand, then you simply should not invest until you are satisfied you have been given the requisite level of insight to understand the concepts described. It is always possible that the whitepaper is nothing more than a salad of buzzwords and technical language intended to give the impression of competence while really doing nothing but obfuscate the truth. The whitepaper should clearly and concisely present the problems and the solutions needed. The whitepaper must give a solid and coherent answer as to who needs this project and why. Also, if the team have put no effort into explaining why a Blockchain solution is needed for this particular problem, or why such a solution is superior to its “real-world” equivalent, it is likely they are only in it for the money. We have more to say about red-flags later. While 2016 raised a comparatively small amount in comparison to the proceeding years, there were a few specific projects that raised significant amounts of capital. These are respectable amounts of money, even by today’s standards, and especially impressive when contrasted with the immaturity of the ICO market at the time, and relative to amounts raised in traditional IPOs. Waves ($16.4mill), Iconomi ($10.6mill) and Golem ($8.6mill) were the three largest fundraisings of the year. 2017 was the year of the ICO whales. Hdac ($258mill), Filecoin ($257mill), EOS Stage 1 ($185mill) and Paragon ($183.16mill) were the largest that year. To be able to raise so much money, so quickly, in such a new market, using such a new mechanism is truly incredible. 2017 was the year that proved ICOs are for serious individuals and institutional investors as well. We have also had some phenomenal amounts raised so far in 2018. Telegram ($1.7bill), Dragon ($320mill), Huobi ($300mill) and Bankera ($150mill). Telegram might be the first mainstream example of an ICO, not only by raising close to $2billion, which would be beyond incredible and impressive even by traditional IPO standards; but also, because it is one of the first ICO companies to tangibly put a product in the hands of hundreds of millions of users, and successfully compete against traditional companies such as Facebook (MessengeWhatsApp), Microsoft (Skype) and Tencent (WeChat). What is ICO main mechanisms and processes.? How to market STO? What are the best security tokens 2019? Follow the link to learn more: UBAI.co We can teach you how to do ICO and STO in 2019. Contact me via Facebook to learn more: Facebook
This is my first contribution to the CryptoCurrency, and as already been commented it's too long, you can scroll down to the MAIN PART, so, please comment about changes you would make to it or just your opinion in general. Thanks Remember Nash equilibrium, Gresham's law, the rules of the Stasi? So the banking system is similar to the Stasi. But that's not the topic. Why did crypto currency become currency in general? The Nobel laureate in economics would have answered something like this: "At some point in time, the market fell into Nash's equilibrium, where everyone suddenly agreed that counting bitcoin as a currency is normal." Why do men wear trousers, and women wear skirts? Historically, in Scotland it wasn't done that way. It's just that at some point everyone agreed that this should be so. Nash equilibrium. Generally ... What is the currency? A currency is a means of indirect exchange. Once the means of exchange were the feathers of a pheasant, which before that did not cost anything. But then the demand arose and people said: "The feather will be a currency, a means of indirect exchange." Gradually, the general requirements for currency were formed: it should be simply divided into parts, and its value does not change; It is easy to carry around; And it should have a long shelf life. Well and the main thing - people should be ready to use currency as a means of exchange. With the crypto currency the same thing happened: people were READY to use it. Now I'm ready to exchange my phone for bitcoin. It is clear that all other criteria for crypto currency is, perhaps, even better than any other currency (it is much easier to store, transfer, divide, and it is eternal). And why there was a crypto currency? One of the main reasons, in my opinion - is the huge embitterment of people on the banking system with all of its rules, which are being promoted under the auspices of a mythical struggle against scammers and other scoundrels. So, the current banking system is similar to the Stasi, to which I must explain why I have such a gait, and not another, and why I go to work such a route, and not another. And then, unless two-meter fences stop real criminals? When criminals need to break into the banking system, they just buy a bank. All these safety rules are, in fact, useless. Therefore, there is a global irritation of people by the banking system. This can be seen everywhere - and in business of any size, too, from small to large. The annoyance created a request for some kind of analogue to the current system. There was a crypto currency. And the process can not be stopped - the crypto currency will take its place in the world economy. What a question for now. The problem is that in fact, the crypto currency is not used today precisely as a means of exchange. The phenomenon is called the Gresham's law: no one wants to pay with the currency, which constantly and strongly becomes more expensive. Everyone has heard a story with two pizzas that were bought for 10 thousand BTC in 2010 (just curious if pizza shop kept those bitcoins until today). Who wants a pizza for $ 15 million? Or do you want to drive in a Toyota car, bought today for 30 BTC, after learning in a year that they paid $3 million for it? Therefore, the crypto currency is used as a means of accumulation and speculation. At the same time, the process of continuous growth leads to the fact that basic crypto-currencies lose their properties as a means of settlement - stability. They turn into the semblance of shares of a rapidly growing company. And who wants to sell or change the goods and services of treasuring shares today, if tomorrow they will cost more. This is problem. Stablecoin The volatility of the crypto currency is the subject of long-standing discussions, in which the words "bubble" and "speculative instrument" can often be heard. The problem is solved including the launch of special settlement crypto-currencies, the so-called "stablecoins". This is a crypto currency, the value of which is determined not only by the demand for it, but also by more established methods. In the world there were several attempts to create such stablecoins. As a rule, they were tied to either the value of the fiat currencies - the dollar, the euro - or raw materials (commododis) - oil, gold, and so on. But due to various reasons, they were not widely used. First of all, because the creators of such currencies violated the principle of blockchain - distribution and independence. They issued crypto currency, they sold it, and they bought security on the proceeds. And the fact that the security was stored and controlled by the release organizers did not inspire confidence in the community. Now there are more advanced projects. In general, there is a hypothesis that the future is behind the "stable", tied to commododes. It is based on the fact that in the society in general and in the economy in particular, the so-called fatigue of the material of the classical unsecured money. At the same time, we see that the same dollar, euro, yuan, Brazilian real and all other classical currencies are also subject to volatility. And all this against the backdrop of a global rise in the cost of money. The economy is looking for alternatives. But will the social request for a block of commodities be critically higher than for classical money? I am not sure. But the fact that it will be more than now - most likely. Right now, there are several interesting stablecoin projects in the world: There is a project Tether, which stably enters the TOP-50 on capitalization (just over $300 million). Tether is the dollar's coin, 1 to 1. In Israel, they launched a start-up, which tries to make a crypto currency, tied to oil. In fact, they are not yet very successful, because they can not solve the problem of oil storage - it is difficult to store. There are projects that try to link the crypto currency to computing power, to electricity, such as SONM. You can easily explain to your mother about the crypto currency, tied to gold. I have not talked about the main (yet) and most obvious commodity - gold. Gold is a commodity that everyone understands. Gold accounts for about 5-10% of the global investment market. Gold is a natural limited natural resource. According to open data, the gold reserves of governments are about 30 thousand tons, and about the same in the hands of citizens. Total about 60 thousand tons. About 3 thousand tons of gold is extracted every year. This is a stable figure that can not change dramatically in any direction due to distributed production in different countries and established technologies. Therefore, the value of gold, expressed in goods and services, practically does not change. All this makes gold the ideal equivalent of calculation. Actually, it was so throughout the history of human development. Even the first money was tied to gold until governments decided to replace the gold mining process with a simpler process of printing paper money. Well, the main thing: you easily explain to your mother about the crypto-currency, tied to gold. And she will understand you. Now there are several "golden" crypto projects. There are not so many, but everyone has a different concept: Impressive is the OneGram project from Dubai, which plans to raise $ 500 million for the ICO, which began on May 27 and which should end on September 24. For today, 22% of 12,400,786 tokens sold at $ 43.18 apiece are sold. "Dubai" and "gold" sounds somehow impressive, you must agree. OneGram is tied to the stored physical gold. They have a content, strange, in my opinion, a counter: they position themselves as a project for Muslims. In the world of blockade, any artificial limitation causes questions, because it contradicts the very concept of technology. True, according to the founders themselves, now most of the investors of the project are not Muslims. Still there is a project of the British Royal Mint - Royal Mint Gold, in which one token is tied to one gram of gold. The project raises questions from the point of view of decentralization. Another ambitious project is the American-Australian OZCoin. It is provided with 100 thousand ounces (slightly more than 2.8 tons) of gold at 24 carats. Also, there is a "Russian" Goldmint. I took the "Russian" in quotes, because it has international team. The project plans to hold ICO in September, and in May held pre ICO and collected for a couple of days $600 thousand. Imagine that there is an ingot of gold that is able to be transported quickly and cost-free to anywhere in the world without a chance of being stolen. Usually verification of the team removes 9/10 of the risk - the probability of "scam" or some illegal actions is equated to zero. I always say that Whitepaper, the business plan in the ICO world is secondary to the team. It does not matter what you do, but who you are. If tomorrow Elon Musk will grow cows, then investors will believe in his project. Overview of TOP-15 crypto-currency Now about the crypto currency in general. On the Internet, you can easily find sites where you can see the capitalization of each crypto currency, which is drawn at the crypto-exchange, its current price in dollars, the schedule of price changes, the amount of currency that is traded on the market. Such statistics will help a little to understand the beginning investors, but give at least a general idea of what is happening. I will briefly talk about several crypto-currencies in the TOP-50 on capitalization: what are their essence, advantages and disadvantages. And despite the fact that in many of them I invested money, I will not give any specific advice on investment here. MAIN PART
The analogy from the real world is gold. This currency appeared first on the market, and therefore occupies (so far) the first place in terms of popularity, capitalization and exchange rate relative to the dollar. All other currencies, which appeared later, began to be called altcoins, and bitcoin is still a benchmark, from which all are repelled. Bitcoin is a crypto currency that can only be sent, received and stored. In doing so, it has many disadvantages inherent in the architecture itself: it is slow, difficult to scale, requires a lot of power for mining, a lot of storage space, transactions are expensive, and cryptography can be hacked if desired. Here are the cons: Bitcoin is slow, means that transactions in bitcoin occur every 10 minutes. To confirm the transaction, you need to mine, and this is a very energy-intensive process. To increase the number of users (scalability), you need to increase the computing power of computers. Bitcoin was not such a decentralized system, as it was announced at the very beginning. Theoretically, the miners can unite into huge pools and manage the network. The maximum number of bitcoins that can be released is 21 million. To date, they have already produced 16.75 million. What will happen when the total volume reaches the limit? Obviously, there will be a so-called hardfork, when it will be decided to create a new version of the bitcoin-network. This means a big vote, if you want - holding a referendum among the holders of the bitcoins. The Chinese holders of the Crypto-currency were in favor of holding such a referendum already in September. After him, perhaps, the "constitution" of bitcoin will change. And we know how constitutions change easily and quickly in different countries ...
An analogy from the real world is the new Microsoft. "Ether" begins to press bitcoin in terms of popularity. Probably, this currency has more prospects. If bitcoin can act only as a means of exchange and storage, then Ethereum has a number of advantages. The main thing is the ability to create smart contracts. Now, this platform is the most popular in the world in the construction of the block economy, and is used with numerous ICO. Ethereum inherited almost all the diseases of bitcoin. Yes, it's faster - it updates every 10 seconds (that is 60 times faster), but it has the same scaling problems (the recent case with SONM is an example), power consumption and storage. It may well challenge the leadership of bitcoin in the near future.
An analogy from the real world is the new VISA. The project team is trying to make a new payment system so that it can make payments in all currencies. The advantage of this currency is that it is used by banks. However, it is not decentralized. Coins can not be mined, therefore, their number does not increase. Ripple has a huge speed advantage over BTC and ETH, but the operations are not so transparent. For the classical banking system, this is normal - there anonymity has never been welcomed.
An analogy from the real world is platinum, which is cheaper than gold. Absolute analog of the bitcoin. Faster, better in all respects - but just turned out to be the second. But it is worth it in terms of diversifying investment in the same bitcoin. However, there is nothing from the point of view of innovation.
The analogy from the real world is Alibaba (not Amazon). Alibaba - the largest online store with a multi-billion dollar turnover. But still understand that it is still not as steep as Amazon. Classic may even be more expensive than regular Ethereum, but there are some nuances. ETC appeared after the Ethereum hardfork, which occurred last fall, and still does not cause trust in the crypto community. The main attention is still paid to ETH, and all the iconic projects are being conducted on this platform.
Dash and NEM
The analogy from the real world is "not clear who." Honestly, I do not often see these currencies. NEM is mainly drawn in Japan, where it is officially allowed to buy and sell goods for crypto currency. The number of coins is always one less than 9 billion, additional emission is not provided, so there is no mining, but there is a so-called harvesting. A major jump in the NEM course occurred in May, when a closed Mijin platform was created on the basis of NEM, through which Japanese banks can conduct secure transactions. NEM is built on the example of bitcoin, but there are no fundamental differences in architecture. Dash - crypto currency, whose transactions are completely anonymous. Many people talk about this as an advantage, but think: why does an ordinary person have complete anonymity in transactions? Still, all decisions about changes in the "constitution" take place with the help of a general vote, that is, the Dash-network is completely decentralized. Naturally, both currencies work faster than a bitcoin and have a number of software advantages.
An analogy from the real world is the new Google. A real innovation in the world of crypto currency. It offers a fundamentally new paradigm that can change everything at all. IOTA is also called the "crypto currency of things". It appeared five years ago, but it has become popular just now. As soon as it entered the stock exchange, it immediately burst into the Top 10 crypto-currency. How does bitcoin work? In order to perform a bitcoin transaction, the miner must do some work to confirm the transaction. Spend time, huge amounts of energy and allocate space for storage. In the case of IOTA, you can independently confirm the transaction with your device - for example, a regular phone. Your smartphone confirms two other transactions. Those transactions are confirmed by other two. And so on. The more users, the faster and better the network. Now IOTA users have accumulated a critical mass and the currency has become very popular. There is no limit to scalability, no miners are needed, so transactions are free. You do not need to pay a commission to the miners, you do not spend computing power. In general, this is a real bomb that threatens to make a revolution. IOTA solves all problems inherent in bitcoin (limited, high demands on computing power, pseudo-decentralization, data growth and storage problem, slow speed).
The analogy from the real world is JFC Sistema. Briefly, unlike bitcoin, Monero emission is not limited, but transactions take up several times more space than bitcoin. But this is not the most interesting. In general, low-cost transactions, good translation speed, good mining.
An analogy from the real world is the Empire State Building. EOS - the evolution of the currency BitShares and Steemit (which, by the way, seriously criticized that does not prevent BitShares from getting close to the top 10 on capitalization). It is based on a breakthrough technology, which can be compared with the appearance of a blockade. In theory, they can replace Ethereum or enter into synergy with it. In terms of technology, the project is better than Ethereum. Developers have created a new language, and now the EOS platform creates an operating system on which it will be possible to build separate applications. The logic is this: all databases, all web programming will be transferred to the block system. New technologies will allow asynchronous launch of different applications, which will seriously increase the speed of the OS based on EOS. The team expects that the whole world will work on EOS. In general, to be honest, this is the world of "Crypt 3.0".
An analogy from the real world - ? A useful tool not to lose on converting, not to depend on the legislation of different countries, taxes and so on. There is also a similar currency Tether, which is tied to the dollar 1 to 1. If you want to sell or buy dollars on the blockchain, you should come here. These are not speculative instruments. (Here you need to understand that BitShares itself as a unit of account is also "floating"). It is used as a currency for collecting commissions for a transaction of a fiat currency. It can be speculated. But if we want to operate with fiat money in the blockchain, we can do it inside the BitShares system). And 5 more crypto-currencies from the top 50 If you look further, in the top 50 crypto-currencies there are a few notable projects. I will list a few.
An analogy from the real world is the stock exchange. It is essentially a stock exchange: an Ethereum platform on which you can exchange different cryptocurrencies (but they all have to be the ERC20 standard - this is the most common Ethereum standard on which most projects are developed). Everything is regulated by smart contracts. This is a new economic tool in the world of blockchain. In fact, they brought the derivatives into the blockchain, which no one had done before. It seems to me that this is a niche product, which, however, can grow 5-10 times.
An analogy from the real world is McDonalds. A good, fashionable currency, I see future in them. Fast, cheap in a transaction, profitable in the mining. It is loved by miners - in other words, market providers like it. And it is like McDonald's - does not belong to anyone. 99.9% of McDonald's shares are traded on the stock exchange, but the largest shareholder owns only 2% of the shares. Decreded as McDonalds.
An analogy from the real world is Netflix. Fantastic project. And by "fantastic" I do not mean "cool", but the original meaning of the word. The business model is incomprehensible, but the team is good. They try to work in the market of events predictions. While the project is in the alpha stage and no real money goes in there, the team really knows how to correctly analyze the data. Aragon can become crypto-Netflix. How they do it - I have no idea. But just to remind you, 7 years ago Netflix was unprofitable.
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