What Is Bitcoin and Why It Still Matters in 2020 - TechJury

Recently I decided to change all my professional and personal plans. I left my job. I left my friends and family. I left my country. All for Bitcoin. Here is why.

Discovering my core values
I was born and raised in an upper-middle income family in Mexico City under catholic values but turned agnostic as I grew older. I kept the values that made sense, such as the importance of charity and giving back, and threw away the ones that were outdated, such as the focus on guilt as a motivator of change.
As a kid, I remember how conflicting it was to see other kids working in the streets, starving, drugged, and abused. I couldn’t understand why they couldn’t focus on their education the way I did. That planted a seed in my spirit that still grows.
Seeing in economics hope
As a teenager, I entered the rabbit hole of economics with hope. Economics seemed to be this mystical force capable of solving the world’s biggest problems: poverty, corruption, global warming, and many more. I knew that the way we were doing economics was wrong and I wanted to change that.
Just think about the horrible things that have been done under the name of communism, such as the Cambodian genocide, or how the United States, the crown jewel of capitalism, makes of fundamental rights, such as healthcare and education, profitable businesses instead of granting everyone equal access to them.
While studying my undergrad, I quickly fell out of love with the idealistic idea of economics as an almighty force that can conquer all evils. I saw how economics was often used as an excuse to force simplistic representations of culture and society into complex problems. I never understood how that approach of thinking about problems in a vacuum could be useful.
Understanding the power of financial services
Later in my life, while working as a consultant for McKinsey, I finally understood the importance of financial institutions. They decide who should do business and have access to goods and services and who shouldn’t. And financial institutions don’t grant everyone that right. It was clear to me that that was a problem that needed fixing. That’s why I devoted so much time studying this industry back then.
I came to Berkeley to Business School more out of inertia than out of will. I was sponsored by McKinsey and had an offer to go back. I didn’t know exactly what to do with the experience, but I knew I wanted to keep exploring financial services. During my MBA, I heard about Bitcoin in a serious academic environment for the first time and it immediately caught my interest.
Via Berkeley-SkyDeck, a startup school, I heard about lastbit (lasbit.io) for the first time. I read everything I could about the project and about the founder, this cool, heavy-metal lover, who wanted to change the world with the disruptive power of Bitcoin. I could see myself in him. I had to meet him. After failing to meet him in person at an event, I just cold emailed him praying for him to answer. He did.
That’s how I came in contact with Prashanth for the first time, this impressive 25-year-old genius who managed to get Charlie Lee on board of his project with little more than a prototype. There’s a reason why he managed to do this. Today Bitcoin is almost impossible to spend. With Prashanth’s his solution, anyone will be able to swipe a card or tap their phone and pay with Bitcoin instantly anywhere where they are able to pay with their credit card today. Something not so long ago possible only in bitcoiners’ dreams. Through Prashanth I finally understood what Bitcoin really is. It blew my mind.
Unveiling the real meaning of Bitcoin
Bitcoin is not an investment asset, it’s the possibility of a new social contract. Bitcoin is a decentralized, transparent, and auditable network to store and transmit value to which everyone in the world can have access to. This presents a real opportunity to redefine money, which today is inherently centralized, first by central banks, and then by financial institutions. The centralization of money has at least three critical problems that Bitcoin solves.
First, there is a macroeconomic problem that has to do with monetary policy and that today with the COVID-19 economic crisis is more relevant than ever. Money is supposed to be a reflection of real economic value, but some central banks print money arbitrarily. Bitcoin’s monetary supply is limited by design. Second, centralized financial services are discriminatory and don’t allow free access to everyone. Bitcoin is universal and free. This means that for the first time in human history, everyone will be able to participate in the global economy. And participation is the pillar of democracy. Third, central authorities control private information. The recent attacks to high profile account on Twitter illustrate how vulnerable private information is when stored in centralized networks. Bitcoin allows people to have full ownership and control of their personal and financial information, protecting both their identity and their wealth.
As such, Bitcoin emerged in front of my eyes as a way to instrument basic democratic principles in a way in which everyone can have equal representation. Money as we know it will soon be a thing of the past because money as we know it not fair nor egalitarian and now people can choose.
I had to quit McKinsey. I had to leave Mexico. I had to stay with lastbit. I had to give this project my all.
submitted by bm_bkly to Bitcoin [link] [comments]

My stock study watchlist. would appreciate criticisms or red flags

Core
- FB ecosystem
This is the stock that i believe is invested in the right places and has a path forward in the global market. I work as a React developer in fintech and I greatly enjoy their technology. The reason I stopped using snapchat was because I couldn't use it on low connection in Mexico, but Instagram worked marvelously. I use Whatsapp to stay in touch with my family in mexico and Facebook to stay in touch with my mom. There's something extremely powerful about that in my opinion.
They're conservative with their push and development of camera and VR technology which is wise in my opinion give the many opportunities that exist in that space. They're pushing along with fintech in India, again with small business through Whatsapp. And they provide a suite of customer services for small business and entrepeneurs.

- Microsoft
I think they will have a great run during the cloud era of software development. Their acquiring of Github AND NPM goes to show how in touch they are with developer servicing.

- Paypal
Paypal has a marvelous history and is a battle tested pioneer in the fintech space. I see them repeating their previous successes by acquiring Honey. I work with Honey in the fintech space and now I'm understanding that Paypal has an auto coupon scraper on my Amazon purchases while my Visa ones don't. This is the forward thinking I love from Paypal despite not being as flashy as Square.

- Disney
Disney is quintessential american entertainment. I believe their deep roots in American culture and the entertainment industry will provide a solid bedrock for them for the generations to come.

- Waste Management
Sanitation and environmental, like internet connection technology, are about the same when it comes to market penetration. It is a scarcity. Sanitation is a critical part of any society's development and wellbeing. I think WM will be there to benefit from increased urbanization and industriousness from technology and wealth growth.

- Kansas City Southern
I'm Mexican and my family are avocado farmers. I believe in the future prospects of Mexico and its relationship with its neighbors. Mexico is a bustling nation and many youth are international students that carry degrees. This is a far cry from having military policing streets in rural neighborhoods decades ago. Kansas city southern is part of the supply chain that connects Mexico to main industrious Mexican states like Monterrey, Jalisco, and Michaocan. I like rail in this regard because it's a lot of weight in one operation of heavy materials. So Canadians that use Mexican mining will also benefit from this railroad.
- Nintendo
I believe in the future of gaming as a market and if I were to take a shot at who would be the most stable, I would vote for Nintendo. Like Facebook, they approach the family unit and grow generationally. I love their curveball approach to gaming and I think that creativity, along with it's customers trust, will be something I can hold onto for a long time versus companies that have a history of developing games like Call of Duty or World of Warcraft. Nintendo can take different forms: in the living room, at sweaty tournaments, online, mobile, on your phone, on a TV, in the movies, etc.

Closely watching
- United Health or Cigna
This is only going to grow and wont change due to American politics for 8 years at a minimum.
- Cisco
Same as Microsoft but for IT.
- Impossible Foods IPO
I've been vegetarian for 10 years and Impossible Burgers has been one of the most mindblowing experiences of my life. The product is phenomenal and on a league of its owned compared to Beyond Meat. IMHO Beyond taste like cheap school lunchroom burgers and Impossible tastes like something I would be excited to feed my family. If their pork products are great then I am ALL in because Chicken products are by far the easiest thing to replicate. I'm extremely excited about this product.
- Visa
They make a ton of money on transactions. I saw them hiring for blockchain development so it leads me to believe that they're adapting.
- Square
I work in the fintech space and I like their modest approach to financial services. Their acquiring of a bank charter is actually incredibly important due to all the procurement and legal processes that go behind being a fintech company (abiding by federal security laws, etc). The one reason I like Chase banking is because I enjoy their app. I see Square as a competitor to Chase, surprisingly.
- Apple
Apple designs its products with customer service in mind. I think the future of education technology will likely go to Apple because of this. Their screens and cameras are wonderful and I can see them pioneering computer vision products because of this. They are THE American Tech company.
- TMobile
Aggressive as hell and grew to be a large player through savvy moves across time. Their customer service is a highlight for me.
- JPM
Customer service for banking is unmatched IMO. If any legacy banker will make it across changes, I believe Chase is doing what it takes to adapt and think forward.
- Planet Fitness
$10 gyms, clean, and casual enough for the general population. You can't beat $10 gym membership when you're broke as fuck. I've been a heavy lifter before and still used Planet fitness in my transitions across states and whatnot. I need to look at their numbers more closely.
- Volkwagen
I trust Europe and Japan to take EVs more seriously. I don't know who will seriously come close to competing with Tesla in the long run but they'll have to.
- Panasonic
Panasonic, much like AMD, did not immediately reflect the value of what they have produced. AMD did not explode inline with bitcoin or cheaper GPU consumption, in the same way Panasonic did not reflect a massive spike in price after speculation in Tesla grew. They're an important arm to the EV market that spreads across many players ranging from Tesla to Toyota to big tech.

- Lyft
I think Lyft's focus on customer service and regional clientele will pay off against Uber, who is growing too quickly and spreading thin. Lyft will benefit from the development of computer vision and Big tech's interest in automanufacturing.

- Crypto (Bitcoin or XRP)
I like crypto as a technology as a software engineer. I see the value in a faster process for procuring and exchanging legal tender that does not have to go through the bottleneck of the ACH process or through legal issues like the PATRIOT ACT or the Bank Secrecy Act. It still fundamentally respects those laws without the frustrations of banking service bottlenecks. I think the halvening protocol has an interesting affect on Bitcoin and supply and the market that it's trying to generate.







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dxDAO aims to power DeFi protocols through decentralized governance

I found this article on internet. It's repost of it to help educate people about all DXDao advantages:
These are positive and necessary steps for DeFi. The new governance structures are intended to help coordinate across community stakeholders and make better decisions. These dynamics are influenced by the issues covered in Dose of DeFi, but I believe they deserve their own focused analysis.
Govern This aims to educate token holders and make them better voters. Emphasis will be placed on specific governance proposals and relaying community governance discussions on forums and weekly calls.
Governance is a coordination technology that has helped countries and companies build more than the sum of their parts. Blockchains are also a coordination technology, but for computers, not humans***.*** Govern This will track the development of the melding of these two over the coming years.
Like governance, Govern This is a work in progress. I would appreciate any feedback on format, topics covered or any other suggestions to make the newsletter better. Just hit reply.
The first issue of Govern This is below. Please click here to subscribe.
Thanks for reading,
Chris
📷
dxDAO aims to power DeFi protocols through decentralized governance
Gnosis launched a long-awaited DEX last week with batched auctions for low-liquidity trade pairs. The front-end, Mesa.Eth.Link is owned and operated by dxDAO, a decentralized collective that hopes to power other DeFi protocols.
While dYdX does not have any specific governance plans (yet), this tweet from dYdX founder Antonio Juliano is a common approach to governance.
📷Antonio Juliano @AntonioMJuliano3) 0x should focus less on governance in the short term. It’s way more important to first build something with a large amount of adoption that’s worth governing
December 6th 2018
3 Retweets62 Likes
The tweet at the end of 2018 was in response to 0x and its native token, ZRX. The project was popular but the token had no use case outside of governance.
This governance strategy – build now, decentralize later – is widely accepted in the space and is perhaps best exemplified by the A16Z’s Jesse Walden’s post, “Progressive Decentralization: A Playbook for Building Crypto Applications”, which the A16Z-backed Compound has essentially implemented (more in the section below).
dxDAO, on the other hand, maintains that decentralization must come at the beginning or else the core team and investors will have an outsized influence on the project in formal (token voting) or informal ways (dictators for life).
Background
dxDAO was launched in May 2019, spun out of a collaboration between Gnosis and DAOstack over managing the DutchX platform. dxDAO’s key governance design is separating financial rights to the DAO (DXD) from voting power over the DAO (Reputation). It used an Edgeware-style lock drop to distribute reputation to stakeholders in May of last year. Any user could lock up ETH or an accepted ERC-20 for a month and receive Reputation, which are voting rights in dxDAO, even though it is not a token and cannot be transferred.
Over 400 unique Ethereum addresses participated in the distribution scheme. Gnosis went through a pretty extensive process in July 2019 to “step back” from its involvement in the DAO, and since then, the community and dxDAO have aligned behind a mission of “putting the ‘De’ in Decentralized Finance”.
Following on last week’s launch of Mesa.ETH.Link, dxDAO is conducting a fundraiser or (“DAICO”?) to help fund its new slate of DeFi products, including a prediction market platform (Omen) and a privacy-centric DeFi dashboard (Mix).
Project launch is typically when a project is most centralized. Execution is hard and direction and accountability are important. dxDAO’s approach will be an interesting counterexample to the “decentralize later” trend and may provide insight into new governance strategies.
Click here for more information about the dxDAO fundraiser.
Here’s what is on the dxDAO docket this week:
Compound governance goes live, has it found Market-Protocol-Fit?
Since its founding in 2017, Compound has executed with an almost flawless record: no bugs/hacks, a major protocol upgrade and a big name fundraise (twice).
But all of that has been because Compound, the company, has executed well, but can protocol development and the growth of the platform be sustained with community management? We shall see.
Compound’s governance system could not be simpler. Anyone with at least 1% of COMP can submit a proposal of executable code. COMP holders have a 3 day voting period; the proposal passes with a majority of token votes AND a 4% quorum of all COMP tokens.
The 1% minimum for proposal submission is a good anti-Sybil mechanism but it greatly limits participation by small users. There is delegation, so you could imagine a “proposal petition” where you would delegate your COMP to a proposal instead of signing your name.
Compound is clearly taking the “less governance is the best governance” approach. This has worked surprisingly well with Bitcoin and Ethereum, which of course, do not have any formal governance, but those communities clearly have informal governance systems that make decisions.
The biggest governance question for Compound: who is the community?
Market-Protocol-Fit
Other Internet has an intriguing essay on the emergent order from new blockchain tokens and their communities. It is worth a read. It discusses the emergent iteration that blockchains – as a technology and a community – go through to find a niche, both in culture and product.
While it focuses on base-layer blockchains that launch with a token, the essay underscores the most underrated governance element: token distribution. It quotes an insightful tweet from Eric Wall
📷Eric Wall @ercwlA question that keeps me up at night: Is it possible to create a rubbish coin based on advanced bullshit, build a community of misguided fans nevertheless, run it centralized for 5 yrs, hardfork-copy the design of a real working project, keep the community and become a success?
keysheet @keysheet
@ErcWll was one of the first vocal critics of IOTA back in 2017, shortly before the project hit a market cap of $15B. https://t.co/2267e8LEpl Today, the project is down 99% and appears to be brutally falling apart. A thread:
February 13th 2020
17 Retweets163 Likes
Before Bitcoin could harden its code and find ‘Digital Gold’ and before Ethereum found ‘DeFi’ and ships ETH2.0, both needed to find a “a strong community of believers” in order to create a “virtuous cycle between headless brands and infrastructural build-out to progressively realize [their] initial promise.”
Communities are connected through a wide spread token distribution, Bitcoin through cypherpunks and online drugs and Ethereum through a global ICO (what Teo Leibowitz called “The Immaculate ICO”).
$COMP distribution
The biggest “news” has been details about $COMP distribution:
There are no explicit plans yet, but the widely held assumption is that the COMP distribution will be determined by the interest earned and paid by users on the protocol since its inception. This is a clever way that only incentivizes more use of the protocol and is hard to game because interests accrues over time.
But the question still remains, what will the COMP community look like and what values will it espouse? Can emergent cultures arise out of Silicon Valley too?
Here’s what is on the Compound docket this week:
Maker and wBTC, a test case for the MIP process
While Maker had planned to spend Q2 moving forward with their upgraded governance process, most of its focus has been on restoring the Dai peg.
For more on how the Maker governance process has expanded outside the core community, check out the previous edition of Govern This.
Here’s what is on the Maker docket this week:
Governance and Risk meeting (April 23)
Single Collateral Dai shutdown – the process has begun. A poll passed with May 12 as the official SCD shutdown. Just yesterday, an executive just passed yesterday to make the MKR oracle fee-less, which will help with migration. Many in the community think the migration of debt from SCD will do more than enough to restore the peg.
13 MIPs and 2 sub proposals – Core to the new Maker governance process is the “Maker Improvement Proposals (MIPs), which are modeled off of BIPs (for Bitcoin) and EIPs (for Ethereum). The two sub-proposals are to appoint the Smart Contracts Team and assign Charles St. Louis as the MIP editor.
The 13 MIPs are listed below:
- MIP1 (Maker Governance Paradigms)- MIP2 (Launch Period)- MIP3 (Governance Cycle)- MIP4 (MIP Amendment and Removal Process)- MIP5 (Emergency Voting System)- MIP6 (Collateral Onboarding Form/Forum Template)- MIP7 (Onboarding and Offboarding Domain Teams for Collateral Onboarding)- MIP8 (Domain Greenlight)- MIP9 (Community Greenlight)- MIP10 (Oracle Management)- MIP11 (Collateral Onboarding General Risk Model Management)- MIP12 (Collateral and Risk Parameter Management)
By and large, the MIPs codify many of the informal Maker governance processes. There is currently a request for comments period (MIP forum) and there will be an informal poll on Monday, April 27 on whether to proceed with the 13 MIPs and 2 sub proposals. If it’s a “Yes”, than an executive for an official ratification vote would start on May 1 and lasts for 4 days. If it passes, the official governance cycle will begin and the rest of the MIPs will likely be approved from May 4 – 6.
Other Governing Things
That’s it! Feedback definitely appreciated. Just hit reply. Written in Brooklyn where it rained all day. No euchre today, but yesterday was epic.
Govern This is written by Chris Powers. Opinions expressed are my own. All content is for informational purposes and is not intended as investment advice.
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Why i’m bullish on Zilliqa (long read)

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

The Unofficial Cardano FAQ - V3

(if you would like to add information or see mistakes, just comment below and I will credit you)
What is Cardano? Cardano is an open source and permissionless "Third Generation" blockchain project being developed by IOHK. Development and research started in 2015, with the 1.0 mainnet launching in 2017. Cardano blockchain is currently being developed into two layers. The first one is the ledger of account values, and the second one is the reason why values are transferred from one account to the other.
  1. Cardano Settlement Layer (CSL) - The CSL acts as the ledger of account or balance ledger. This is an idea created as an improvement of bitcoin blockchain. It uses a proof-of-stake consensus algorithm known as Ouroboros to generate new blocks and confirm transactions.
  2. Cardano Computation Layer (CCL) - The CCL contains the data how values are transferred. Since the computation layer is not connected to balance ledger, users of the CCL can create customized rules (smart contracts) when evaluating transactions. (https://support.bitkub.com/hc/en-us/articles/360006678892-What-are-the-two-layers-of-Cardano-)
IOHK has the contract with an undisclosed party to develop the project until the end of 2020, at which point the community may elect another development team - on the assumption that the voting infrastructure has been completed. However CEO Charles Hoskinson has stated that they will develop the project until it is completed, and they are simply financed until the end of 2020.
Cardano was the first project built on a peer-reviewed scientific development method, resulting in dozens of research papers produced by IOHK. Among these papers is Ouroboros Genesis, proving that a Proof of Stake protocol can be just as secure as Proof of Work - which was originally developed for Bitcoin, and refined for Ethereum. This PoS protocol considerably lowers the resources cost to maintain network while still maintaining security and network speed.
Cardano as a financial infrastructure is not yet completed, With significant development to be rolled out.
What were the other two generations of blockchain? Gen 1 was Bitcoin. It exists by itself and talks to nobody but Bitcoin. It is capable of peer to peer transactions without a third party in such a way that you cannot cheat the system. This was a major step forward for the E-cash concept that people have been working on for the 20 years prior.
Gen 2 was Ethereum and other smart-contract platforms that allow other coins and platforms to be built on top of their infrastructure. These coins can interact with others on the platform, but cannot interact with other platforms. Meaning it is still not truly interoperable. Most Gen 2 blockchains are also using Proof of Work likes Bitcoin, which effects scaling. Also missing is a built-in method to pay for upgrades and voting mechanics for decision making.
Gen 3 blockchains are a complete package designed to replace the current financial infrastructure of the world. Cardano is using Proof of Stake to ensure security and decentralisation(Shelley). Scaling through parallel computation (Hydra in Basho), Sidechains to allow the platform to interact with other platforms (Basho), and also include mechanisms for voting for project funding, changes to the protocol and improvement proposals (Voltaire). Finally smart contracts platform for new and established projects that are developer friendly (Goguen).
Who is the team behind Cardano? There are three organisations that are contributing to the development of Cardano. The first is the Cardano Foundation, an objective, non-profit organisation based in Switzerland. Its core responsibilities are to nurture, grow and educate Cardano users and commercial communities, to engage with authorities on regulatory and commercial matters and to act as a blockchain and cryptocurrency standards body. The second entity is IOHK, a leading cryptocurrency research and development company, which holds the contract to develop the platform until 2020. The final business partner is Emurgo, which invests in start-ups and assists commercial ventures to build on the Cardano blockchain.
www.Cardano.org www.emurgo.io https://cardanofoundation.org/en/
What is the difference between Proof of Work and Proof of stake? Both these protocols are known as “consensus protocols” that confirm whether a transaction is valid or invalid without a middleman like Visa or your bank. Every node (active and updated copy of the blockchain) can agree that the transaction did take place legitimately. If more than half validators agree, then the ledger is updated and the transaction is now secured. Proof-of-Work (PoW) happens when a miner is elected to solve an exceptionally difficult math problem and gets credit for adding a verified block to the blockchain. Finding a solution is an arduous guessing game that takes a considerable amount of computing power to compete for the correct answer. It is like “pick a number between 1 and one trillion” and when you get it right, you get $30,000 in Bitcoin, so the more computers you have working on it, the faster you can solve it. Also the more people who are trying to solve the same block, the harder the algorithm, so it may become 1 in 20 trillion. The downside is the massive amounts of power required to run the computers that run the network, and the slow pace that blocks are solved. To “Hack” a PoW system, you need 51% of the computing power, which would allow you to deny transactions, or spend the same coin twice. At the moment there are 8 main mining operations for bitcoin, and 4 of them make up more that 51% of the mining power.
PoS instead selects a coin at random that already exists, and the person who owns that coin is elected to put the work in to validate the block. This means there is no contest and no guessing game. Some computer power is required, but only a fraction of a PoW system. The complex nature of selecting a coin that exists on the correct and longest chain and is owned by someone who can complete the block, AND in such a way that it is secure AND that computer currently running AND that person also having an incentive to complete the work, has made the development of PoS very slow. However only a few years ago it wasn’t even possible. In this method, the more of the coin (ADA) you stake, the more likely you are to be selected to close a block. Cardano also allows you to delegate your stake to someone else to validate the block so they do the work, and you share in the reward for doing so.
To “hack” a PoS blockchain you need to own 51% of the tokens, which is significantly harder than owning 51% of the computing power.
What is ADA and how is it different to Cardano? Cardano is the name of the network infrastructure, and can be thought of like a rail network. ADA is the native token that has been developed alongside Cardano to facilitate the network operation. This helps confusion and maintains distinction, compared to Ethereum being the native token of Ethereum. Similar to bitcoin or any other token, ADA can be sent peer to peer as payment, but is also the reward for running the network, and what is taken as transaction fees.
In this metaphor “Cardano” is the train tracks, that everything runs on. A stake pool would be the locomotive, facilitating transactions on the network while ADA is the coal that powers the locomotive. The train carriages are Decentralised applications (Dapps) that are also running on cardano tracks, but are not actively powering the network.
What is staking Cardano is a Proof of Stake protocol, and uses already existing coins like a marker to ensure security. The protocol chooses a coin at random and the owner of that coin is elected to validate a block of transactions. Staking is the process of adding your ADA coins to a Pool that has the resources to run the network. If the pool you have chosen to "delegate" your stake to is chosen to close/validate a block, then you get a portion of the rewards. The ADA never leaves your wallet, and you can "undelegate" whenever you like. this increases stability of the network and also gives an incentive to pool operators to invest the time and hardware required to run a pool.
What is a stake-pool and how does it work? Cardano.org FAQ on the issue goes into much more detail
A stake pool is where the computing power of the network takes place. During ITN there was 1200 registered stake pools while 300 were creating blocks. You can manage your own stake-pool or delegate your ADA to an already registered pool. Rewards are determined by the protocol, however the pool may elect to charge fee Percentages, or flat rate fee to upkeep their pool.
Can I Stake my ADA right now? The staking testnet has closed, If you participated in the Incentivised Test Net and earned rewards, instructions to check the balance are here.
However if you have just purchased some or it was held on an exchange, then you will need to wait until the Shelley mainnet launch happening at the end of July 2020.
Where do I stake my ADA? Daedalus Flight wallet, and Yoroi Wallet (as a chrome extension) are the current best options. Adalite and several other third-party wallets also exist. Coinbase will also allow staking as a custodial service, and many exchanges may offer “staking as a service” so you can leave your coins on the exchange and still earn rewards if you enjoy trading. I do not recommend leaving coins on an exchange unless you are actively trading.
What are the staking rewards now and what can I expect on a return in the future? The Incentivised Test Net (ITN) Delivered 10%-15%pa returns on average. The future of staking will most likely be lower, but will depend on the amount of ADA staked across the network and the amount of network traffic.
Check https://staking.cardano.org/en/calculato for a clearer picture.
what is a Pledge? To stop one person operating many pools, the rewards that a pool earns will vary depending on the amount of personal ADA they “pledge” to open the pool. This means that 50 pools with a 1,00ADA pledge each will be overall less profitable than 1-2 pool with the max ADA pledge (unknown but likely around 300k). Even if the 50 pools have the same over stake delegated by other users and have a better chance of being selected to close a block, the 50 pools may receive lower rewards.. (at least that is the theory)
Who is IOHK? IOHK is a for-profit software engineering company founded by CEO Charles Hoskinson and Jeremy Wood in 2015 that has taken a scientific approach to the development of blockchain. IOHK started with “first principles” and looked at questions like “what is a blockchain” and “what should a blockchain be able to do” rather than accepting the established paradigm of Bitcoin and Ethereum. IOHK was originally Input Output Hong Kong, but is now Input Output Global and is based in Wyoming USA employing over 230 staff. IOHK has established research labs in several universities in order to complete the Cardano project, and is also developing Ethereum Classic, Atala, Mantis and possibly other Blockchain related programs and infrastructure.
Who is Charles? Charles Hoskinson is an early adopter of cryptocurrencies, American entrepreneur and cryptocurrency specialist. Charles Co-founded Ethereum with Vitalik Buterin and 5-8 others, However he only worked on that project for approximately six-months. Charles is now the CEO of IOHK and the director of The Bitcoin Education Project.
Why isn’t ADA on coinbase? Cardano and coinbase have recently connected in a big way. With IOHK turning over all their ADA to the custodial services of Coinbase. This means that Cardano and Coinbase have been working together for some time and there is a strong partnership forming. Staking and cold storage will be available and trading on Coinbase will most likely become available after the release of Shelley (although no official word yet)
Why Doesn’t Cardano have a Wikipedia Page? Wikipedia has strict guidelines on what can be turned into an article. As there has been no coverage of Cardano from mainstream media or “noteworthy” sources, there is no article yet. Wikipedia will also not accept sources from IOHK as they are not considered “reliable” and must come from a third party. This will most likely change soon.
Cardano does have a dedicated community driven wiki
https://cardanowiki.info/wiki/Home
What is Atala and why do I care?*
Atala is a suite of services being developed on top of the cardano blockchain by IOHK that focusses on credential certification, for things like education, work history and degrees (Atala Prism). Product counterfeiting protection through registering products on a blockchain and create taper-proof provenance. This does not only apply to Gucci handbags, but also medication, art, and anything that can be counterfeited (Atala Scan). As well as supply chain tracking to see issues and inefficiencies with greater transparency(Atala Trace).
Im new, how much is a good investment?
Cardano is still a speculative market and although there is amazing potential here, it is still only potential. When investing in any High risk market like Crypto, only every invest what you are willing to lose. Cardano may be testing the 10c barrier now. But in March it dumped to 1.7c. And if you suddenly need your money back during the dump then you are out of luck. Do your research before you FOMO in. Start with a small amount and send it between wallets and exchanges to understand how the system works. Store your private keys offline (or online cloud service but encrypted) with a method that is unlikely to be damaged AND have multiple copies. So in the case of a house fire or a blow to the head, or the cloud service being shutdown/destroyed, you do not lose your money.
Timelines
https://roadmap.cardano.org/en/
Shelley Decentralisation rollout and news
Goguen smart contract rollout
Voltaire Voting mechanics – no official roll out timeline (though promised for 2020)
Basho scaling and sidechains – no official roll out time line (most likely 2021)
submitted by YourBestMateRobbo to cardano [link] [comments]

A better name for 'Decred' to broaden the reach of our superior vision

This is a detailed proposal I planned to have put up for vote on Politeia. But was told it would need a more detailed plan of execution (budget, marketing, devs etc) which is beyond my expertise. I invite everyone in the DCR community to read it and contribute to make it a reality.
Intro:
Warm greetings to everyone! I am a DCR supporter with a background in law and media. For years I was a news reporter in one of China's largest television networks, during that time I have accumulated a solid understanding of mass communication and presentation.
I fell down the Bitcoin rabbit hole in 2017 and has not look back since. But I believe DCR is a superior store-of-value and a decentralised organism capable of long-term adaptability thus securing the long term financial sovereignty and organisation of people around the world.
Problem:
However, there is a growing sense in the community that Decred has a name recognition barrier to overcome. That was expressed by the DEX developers saying the concern they have is 'getting the word out there'(Decred in Depth May 15th), a concern echoed by many others. The community also appears to be debating and experimenting with various outreach strategies. I have confidence in our vision, developers and contributors. However, they are not the only factors determining the success of a project. When it comes to the expansion of name recognition, adoption and network effects, the competition is fierce and likely winner takes most or even all (see Matthew effect, "Whoever has will be given more, and they will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what they have will be taken from them." Bible Matt 13:12 ).
If we do not present our project in the most approachable way possible, I do believe we are at risk of missing out on the golden window of adoption, and the project might never really catch on. That would be a big shame because the world would never be able to adopt our superior vision of Bitcoin sound money, and if the governance issues of bitcoin does flare up further down the road, there is a risk of it being corrupted, neutralised or captured by some predatory governments and the international fiat financiers, and they will never allow something like Bitcoin to develop among the masses again, if that happens, Decred would not be large enough to deter them either.
Reasons for Proposal:
I would like to lay out reasons why the name 'Decred' is not a good name for our project and is holding us back at the moment. I obviously have great respect all the design and planning that has gone before and my fellow Decredees already working on design projects will be incentivised to vote against my proposal. But I am offering constructive criticism and we all want the project to succeed and do not want proposals to just validate whatever we have been doing before. So I hope you would consider this carefully and objectively.
I suggest that the name of our project 'Decred' should be reviewed and rebranded.
Firstly, the name 'Decred (decentralized credits)' is manifestly tech and developer centred, it reflects the perspective and values of the brilliant minds that conceived our project. I understand the monumental importance of decentralization, but for the newcomer the word is hard to grasp.
When introducing the name of a project, we want to communicate what would register as substance that can be easily grasped by people. 'Bitcoin' emphasizes that it is digital and has value. The word 'Coin' is easily understood as substance, 'Coin' is a classic word communicating value that appeals to the most primordial circuits of our brains as something you want( to hold in your hand), something of value, something that jingles in your pocket, something shiny that you want to accumulate and collect.
In contrast, the "De" in Decred gives a notion of negation and negativity, not of substance and affirmation, as is common in the English language (for example: devalue, dethrone, debunk, devolve, dejected). I fully appreciated that to us insiders 'de' signifies 'decentralized' and is of enormous substance and value, but that is not apparent to the newcomer and even implies the opposite.
Secondly, 'Cred (as in credit)' is also very intangible compared to 'Coin', credit only developed later in human economy and do not register with the same force as 'Coin' in our neural circuitry that identifies value. In our day and age, the word 'credit' also has a negative connotations (for example: credit bubble, credit card fraud, credit crunch, credit crisis). In short, credit is associated with volatility and fragility, which is very contrary to the nature of our robust project that values reliability and long-term adaptability.
So with all due respect, "Decred" is not a good name to communicate what we stand for. Compared to 'Bitcoin', it does not meet people where they are (we want people to come for the profit and stay for the vision and tech, most people are like that, for better or for worse), 'Decred' is a bit too self-obsessed with putting what's under-the-hood of the project right upfront in the name, it is not at all obvious what 'Decred' means to a curious person who wanders into cryptoland. In addition, "Decred" bears an unwelcome resemblance to the word "Discredit" which is also another minus.
We should focus more on how the name of our project makes people feel, rather than emphasising function and features that newcomers are unlikely to grasp easily. The majority of people make decisions based on how it makes them feel, not on utility and reason alone. Bitcoin understands this, it struck a more visceral part of the human psyche, people want 'Coins' that can go up in value, but in fact that hopeful speculation and hopium was the Trojan's horse for the masses to adopt a more decentralized, censorship-resistance and secure form of monetary system. Our project should do the same, starting with the name.
Thirdly, I would like to put forward my idea about what should replace the name "Decred'. There can be little doubt that Decred is building on the brilliance and vision of Bitcoin (PoW, 21 million supply cap, transparency and decentralization). In a way, our project aims to be more 'Bitcoin' than Bitcoin, PoW+PoS improves security, the governance mechanism + treasury ventures to where Bitcoin has not gone before, which is building decentralization and transparency in the governance and evolutionary process of the project itself.
Our project lead Jacob Yocom-Piat, whom I really respect, shared how he discovered a 'central planning committee' running things in Bitcoin and believed it was contrary to the spirit of Bitcoin, that helped give birth to the name 'Decred'.
Therefore I believe the 'De' in Decred is a further doubling down of the principle of decentralization ('like it or not, we are taking this all the way, Bitcoin!') , it is a protest. 'Cred' could also be a reaction against the more tangible name 'Coin' signifying that we are moving further beyond it in the digital economy with 'decentralised credits'. However, as I have already laid out above, it is not an approachable name from the perspective of the new adopter. Decred is in essence a reactionary name, and is not optimal for presenting a project that is already digital, intangible and hard to grasp.
History shaped the name 'Decred' and that is a beautiful thing, we would not be here without it. But I suggest it is time to move beyond by taking a step back. We do not want to be going against the grain of two things: 1) human nature and the learning curve towards the tangible and affirmative as opposed the the negational and negative. 2) the already established network effect of the name recognition of 'Bitcoin'. Going against these two grains will make it unnecessarily harder for our outreach, thus hamstringing adoption, instead we should go with the grain and ride the wave of already established network effects by tapping into people's familiarity with the word 'Bitcoin' .
Therefore I propose the new name of our project should at least include the word 'Bitcoin" followed by a word to describe the unique way our project has taken Bitcoin forward.
Bitcoiner Dan Held mention in his blog how: "Bitcoin is the Apex predator of money" https://www.danheld.com/blog/2019/1/6/planting-bitcoinspecies-14 I truly believe that title actually belongs to our project. With our treasury, potential consensus rule changes through politeia and extra security compared to Bitcoin, we will evolve our way up the monetary food-chain because we are robust and superiorly adaptable. As Chris Buriske says: "In #crypto, so long as you have good governance, you can have any feature you want."
Thus, I further suggest our rebranded name be: Bitcoin Evolution (Bitcoin E/BTE). I believe this faithfully reflects our ethos of being true to the spirit of Bitcoin while also being future-proof and adaptable (Although the vote in this proposal itself is not a referendum on Bitcoin Evolution, I will explain at the end).
For people looking into our project, trying to figure out what we are about, 'Bitcoin Evolution' really speaks for itself.
The famous Bitcoin educator Andreas Antonopoulos once said that "the next Bitcoin is Bitcoin". I take it to mean that the idea of Bitcoin is larger than the specific chain Satoshi Nakamoto started himself. If that's true, it is justified for a later project that takes the spirit of Bitcoin even further to adopt the name Bitcoin E. E means Evolution.
Also on the off chance that we turn out to be more wrong about Bitcoin's governance than we think and Bitcoin's rough consensus works out just fine (no more hard forks, successfully implements privacy, no VC corruption etc). Then Bitcoin will become the indisputable 'gold standard' and likely take most of the pie, in that case if our name highlights our similarity to Bitcoin and our governance model also hold its own, we will likely end up doing better than sticking to our protest name 'Decred'. This is from a risk management perspective that we might want to consider.
Also on the off chance that we turn out to be more wrong about Bitcoin's governance than we think and Bitcoin's rough consensus works out just fine (no more hard forks, successfully implements privacy, no VC corruption etc). Then Bitcoin will become the indisputable 'gold standard' and likely take most of the pie, in that case if our name highlights our similarity to Bitcoin and our governance model also hold its own, we will likely end up doing better than sticking to our protest name 'Decred'. This is from a risk management perspective that we might want to consider.
Possible Objections:
I am happy to engage with any question or objections in the comments sections. But allow me to first anticipate some objections I foresee here.
Q1) "Rebranding now will undo too much of the work we have done before. It is too late."
A1: By all the indicators that matter, we are still very early. With the upcoming bull market in this money printer go brrr macro economics setting, a new wave of new investors will be flooding into the crypto sphere in the next 2-3 years, and they will be coming for Bitcoin. By not going against the grain of the established Bitcoin name, the attention Bitcoin Evolution will receive down the years would far outweigh what loss we incur from rebranding. Short term pain, long term gain.
Q2) "Won't we be making an opportunistic gambit and look like scammy or weak projects like Bitcoin Cash, Bitcoin Diamond and Bitcoin Gold ? What if we attract all the wrong people and destroy our community culture?"
A2: I believe regardless of others think, our rebranding is not an opportunistic gambit. Bitcoin Diamond, Gold and etc are forks of Bitcoin that misses the point of what BTC was about. We are not a fork of Bitcoin (and we aim precisely to avoid contentious hard forks). Nevertheless, the spirit of Bitcoin is faithfully implemented in our chain.
We preserve the immutability and robustness of BTC and take the decentralization principle to its full logical conclusion, which is for it to permeant development and community decision -making. One can say we are the true heirs of Bitcoin and we should carry the mantle proudly if we really believe in our vision.
I also do not believe "Bitcoin Evolution" will attract all the wrong people. We will have a huge influx for sure, and that will put us under pressure. But unlike Bitcoin 'Cash' Gold or Diamond', people will coming to us will understand we have the long term and adaptability in mind, 'evolution' suggests it is a long game. The quick buck at all costs bunch will not find ours to be the most enticing name.
I also have faith in our incredible community of communicators and educators to bring new people onboard to our long term mindset.
In addition, when we rebrand, the people who know Decred well and support it will not abandon ship just because they don't like the new name.
The people who are already critical of Decred will no doubt seize the opportunity to attack and insinuate. Haters gonna hate. We did not care before and should not start fretting. I invite all to focus on all the new and curious adopters and explorers who will be flocking to us because of the Bitcoin name, and rightly so.
Q3) "If the fundamentals are sound, won't the project catch on even if the name 'Decred' is unrelatable? Just a matter of time right?"
A3: No. The history of other network effects has shown, the success of a project depends on many factors, it is not just a simple framework of a sifting mechanism eventually singling out the best tech and best ideas.** Sometimes it is not the best idea that wins, but the idea that is good enough at the right time and the right place wins.*\* Think of the internet protocol TCP/IP. We have to have the right ideas at the right time and meet growth goals at an appropriate speed to break out of bottlenecks and achieve network adoption.
With Bitcoin there is the added risk of entrenched centralised establishments exploiting the weaknesses in its governance to neutralised it, if they succeed, we will likely not get a second chance. We should not leave that to chance and refine our project in as many ways as possible.
I believe precisely because we have sound fundamentals of decentralized governance, that when time is ripe to consider a rebrand, we will meet the need together and start this conversation to get the job done. But the project won't automatically catch on by itself, we need to explore and make decisions together to improve it.
In conclusion:
In our name, let us not present to the world what we are against (centralisation), but what we are for(Adaptive future-proof Bitcoin with all its classic strengths). Let us go with the grain of human nature and the network effects of name recognition and not unnecessarily strive against it.
I believe just like a teenager transitioning into adulthood, we are coming of age in a new era of growth and self-awareness. And sometimes, growth means taking a step back to recalibrate and orient ourselves.
What you are voting on:
I hope to ignite a constructive discussion about a serious plan to rebrand for the better. I do not ask for any funding as it is not up to me to implement anything, I just hope my insights can help us on the journey of changing the world for the better with our superior vision of an unstoppable decentralised organism. The How, Who and When questions concerning rebranding should be explored by the community together.
If you Vote 'Yes' you are not necessarily saying we are just going to rebrand to "Bitcoin Evolution" or even a new name with "Bitcoin" in it. Voting 'Yes' means you see the merits of my arguments and want to seriously consider rebranding and turning the page from the current name 'Decred'.
I have been engaging with the Chinese Decred community but I am not known to the community at large, so I understand there will be a lot of questions and scepticism and I welcome all constructive feedback.
I also want to pay my deep respects to all the developers, contributors and everyone who has dedicated their time and passion to our project. Let's keep building together!
If you appreciate the work I put into this, feel free to make a voluntary donation:
DCR: DsWgLiEBw5YAHqrfZpYQjgPYhAT2DkdD6m9
BTC: 3GtuhwsoY2BYjqbaf2tCdjZbZw2Zn4H48P
You can follow me on twitter: https://twitter.com/decredinator
Peace, decredinator
submitted by Decredinator to decred [link] [comments]

[For Hire] Marketing and SEO

My name is Zack Frederick and I started doing marketing several years ago as i began my first yoga ‘e-business', realising very quickly that the difference between me and the next John Doe wasn’t the product but the presentation. So I set about, by trial and error, learning how I could sell more Yoga mats than John Doe. It wasn’t long before I realised I was very good at the marketing aspect, and I didn’t really like things like warehousing and distribution.
Today I’m most interested in building reports, designing paid campaigns and helping with Instagram.
I’ve compiled a few free tips for general marketing and SEO.

Brand awareness

First off. Influencers will not magically make your website successful. You have to be your own influencer. Over my tenor, I have spent thousands on social media analysis, rebranding and learning tricks like sticking state names across American products or even changing the colour of my website depending on the demographics of my audience. Spoilers, guys love red. Here’s an example data set. https://imgur.com/gallery/7OHIx
Last year, I ran a campaign for one of my shoe clients, and we used the pride of state consumers to grow his shoe business. I researched the best colours to use for different states and gave him a list, we put the state names across his shoes and marketed directly to them through instagram. It wasn’t long before his conversion metrics were soaring.
Here's an example report from one of my clients - https://prnt.sc/iisqv8

Value

I have worked with a lot of musicians, a big part of them started with low view, audio-only videos. I learnt quickly that for them to achieve success they had to provide value, so i told them to create videos. They did and then ta-da, they had 4500 views when they only had 200 view music videos before. For the next step, I even got them contacts with massive digital celebrities. My proudest connection having been ‘Ninja’ during the height of his fortnite campaign, I organised the marketing behind several viral Fortnite music parodies with now millions of views.

Trend riding

Make use of trends in your business. If something is so mainstream and big, why ignore it? In the past I have made use of the political trends in the American election with trump AND hillary brands on some of my clients products, with the pro trump and pro hillary supporters wanting to sport their political beliefs no matter the cost.
I see a lot of website based businesses underuse social media with broad attempts at Facebook ads and Instagram ads, ill go to digital marketing agencies and see they either have no social following or a huge botted one. It's a terrible idea to buy followers, if you want to cut corners then you should look at buying a smaller business with a bigger social following.
Here’s the impressions from a tweet I made on the first day of creating a company a twitter platform and using trend riding and collaboration to grow it https://prnt.sc/huziu6 4K Impressions on one tweet in 15 minutes - we hit 80k impressions in the first day. I did this from simply mimiking the formula for success from a similiar company account, i don't want to try change the magic formula for success.

Direction

Adapt

You really do have to stay in touch with your business to know what's working and what isn't, companies like Toys R Us refused to do that and stuck with huge stockpiles of star wars toys and then they collapsed. Blockbusters where ahead of the curve for digital movies and then they refused to change, Netflix changed and Netflix won. Amazon learnt to use online selling and left companies like Tescos with financial crisis.
The big boom in marketing that I’ve seen is social media marketing, marketers can create huge social following for companies and use that platform to sell content for extremely low costs in comparison to the tens of thousands it costs to use other platforms such as radio. Social media marketing has become somewhat controversial, but it is important to always stay open minded.

Collaboration** & Viral content

I can not stress the importance of working with other people. Every billionaire i know of has had a mentor, every big company success story had business partners. I've had far more success in clients who have listened to me and done collaborative work with digital celebs, with a dog product business making thousands of sales when they worked with vlogger Zoella and gave her free products.
Viral content is very important because every Youtuber with over 1 million subscribers has started off big and managed to keep it big, nobody grinded and slowly rose up at an equal exponent. Hard work is fine but being consistent and mixing it up, copying the viral content of others is an easy way of bringing in secondary viewership and traffic. Pewdiepie, the biggest youtuber on the planet, started with viral horror content. Ninja, the biggest streamer, grinded for 7 years but only truly struck gold with the virality of Fortnite. So it makes sense to repeat their methods.

Key words

It is an obvious thing to say but it's neglected, key words are very important. I had a crypto business come to me and ask why their site wasnt doing very well, and i looked through it and saw they never mentioned anything beyond bitcoin. Bitcoin is a very expensive key word to market, with costs of the raw word being as high as 38$ per click. I had to bring them down to earth with harsh truths, i rewrote their entire site using SEM tools in mind - with key words and phrases like "Altcoin exchange" and using the names of the top 100 altcoins across the site.

SEO

Search Engine Optimisation is the name given to increasing the value and raw volume of your organic traffic. A successful website always wants as many of the most likely consumer base to encounter their product because that’s the hardest point of digital business. Your websites SEO is determined by crawlers which regularly check up on your website and update their index which is later used by an algorithm to order results when someone ‘googles’ something.
Today I’m going to be talking you through some key points about SEO that I personally audit for businesses.

Domains

Https://Www.Example.Com is an example of something we call a ‘root domain’ which is made up of protocol (https://) subdomain (www.) domain name (example) and top-level domain (.com). These are the basic parts. It’s important that the protocol is the best and safest it can be or else google will punish you. It’s also important your domain name and top-level domain are appropriate and readable. The words used in your subdomain can also affect how customers interpret your website, websites can be named after their market base for easy marketing. In addition, the age and previous registrations of your domain matter. It’s important these factors are appropriately considered in your website. Be minimal with subdomains.

Targeting

Google knows where it’s users are and what they’re using from their browser data, IPs and MACs and then matches them with websites in their areas or appropriate to searches. Ever since the infamous 2016 update ‘Possum’ it is not something you can ignore. Even jobs based websites had to use the meta data ‘Jobs Schema’ (from 2017 onwards) to tell google where your website was focused. Location specific landing pages matter. You have to pay credence to DNS (domain name server) and Glue to keep TTL (time to load) and mobile in mind, especially with more mobile users than ever. CMS (customs) is also part of this discussion: themes and plugins are a factor in Google’s ranking. One way to improve TTL is through CDN’s and we have to consider how we approach them to rank better. Sometimes, you might face penalties and there are ways to know; that’s a little too hard to explain here but PM me for more.

Content

Nobody loves a book more than google. Robots will read all your website, even the stuff humans don’t bother with. Things like duplication will annoy Google who doesn’t like reading things twice. CTA’s (buttons basically) have to go somewhere nice and if they don’t work properly google will punish you. Human biases are important too. The user experience will effect their retention and Google will clock that. There’s also lots of minor things that can stack up: Filenames (help you rank on Images) Thin content (Google sees it as lazy) phrase diversity (spamming key words is noticed) and URL structures too! Make sure your in and outbound links are healthy as well as having keyword mapping where you assign the correct words to the right pages. Make sure your anchor texts (viewable when linking) are descriptive yet succinct. And finally: link velocity, a healthy eco system of link building is important to longevity and renewed SEO.

Technical Stuff.

Consistent anchor elements are important to prevent 404s. Don’t use abbreviations with naming files and folders. Limit use of dates for file folder names. Your site architecture has to be simple and close to the root domain so the click depth isn’t too great! Links to and from your site can’t be dead ends, and use breadcrumbs! Be wary of canonical issues from similar content across multiple URLs. Treat Cookies and Session IDs properly, privacy laws are ever changed and mismatching them can be dangerous. There’s lots more to go into like header status codes, site maps, GSC Crawl Errors but Reddit has a text limit so I’ve deleted some of my post.

PM me if interested in my services or with questions.

submitted by Draemeth to forhire [link] [comments]

Interview With Eddie Jiang: How CoinEx Is Adapting To The Exchange Space And Growing

Interview With Eddie Jiang: How CoinEx Is Adapting To The Exchange Space And Growing
Written by chaintalk.tv
https://preview.redd.it/v238540taz751.jpg?width=1280&format=pjpg&auto=webp&s=2a852e171a74e49da802d7c12fadba452cf4cf43
We recently had the opportunity to interview the VP of ViaBTC Group, Eddie Jiang. ViaBTC Group owns popular crypto exchange CoinEx and ViaBTC Pool. In this interview Eddie discusses being the first exchange to use BCH as the base currency, ViaBTC Pool and integrating with CoinEx, new features and ambassador program, and competing with other exchanges like Binance and Huobi. Please enjoy the interview below.
How come you decided to open up CoinEx to other cryptos other than just BCH?
Eddie Jiang: CoinEx is the world’s first exchange to implement Bitcoin Cash as a base currency. At that time, it was evident that there was a demand for BCH trading markets, and we are the first to explore this opportunity. It also shows our determination to support the BCH’s development.
As CoinEx is developing, our goal becomes bigger and we are aiming at the global market. We need to constantly improve our product diversification to meet the different needs of more users, so we open up to other cryptos. In the past six months, we have listed more than 50 new tokens. Up to now, we have listed 129 cryptos and 313 markets. Besides, in addition to spot trading, CoinEx also supports perpetual contract and other derivatives trading.
How does CoinEx integrate with the ViaBTC Pool?
Eddie Jiang: ViaBTC Group announced a strategic upgrade, which included a new organizational structure, product innovations and service improvements, on 30 May.
As part of the change, the Group has established three dedicated business units (BU): the financial services BU, consisting of ViaBTC mining pool and CoinEx exchange; the infrastructure services BU, including ViaWallet and Blockchain Explorer; and the ecological development BU, focusing on the research and development of public chain technology and the construction of the ecology.
After halving, the combination of mining and finance will become closer and closer. Investing in mining machines is like buying a Bitcoin option. Miners need more flexible financial products to maintain and increase the value of assets, or hedging services. Based on this judgment, the operations of ViaBTC mining pool and CoinEx exchange will be integrated in the future to realize the financial empowerment of the mining pool to meet the diverse financial needs of miners.
Features of this integrated product upgrade can be summarized as: “ The mining pool is the wallet, and the wallet is the transaction.” ViaBTC is the world first mining pool that has a wallet embedded in the mining pool account. Users do not need to transfer the mined coins, and can realize the function of coin exchange within the wallet. For example, they can directly convert the mined coins into USDT to pay electricity bill. What’s more, users can store, deposit and withdraw their revenue, and transfer assets to CoinEx at any time without charge, as well as complete other operations on the exchange, such as purchasing wealth management products for asset preservation and appreciation. In addition, we also provide hedging services. All of the above functions can be completed in one stop in the mining pool, without the need to transfer assets between different platforms.
The exchange empowers the mining pool, and the mining pool will further bring more traffic and resources to the exchange. The two complement each other and development coordinately.
CoinEx has recently added many new features. Can you talk about what new updates were made to the platform and why you made them?
Eddie Jiang: We have always attached great importance to the development of overseas markets since our establishment, and one of our major goals this year is to cover at least 10 different languages speaking markets.
To realize this and to meet the needs of more users worldwide, CoinEx has been continuously optimizing and upgrading its operating strategies, products and services. Our product diversifications are constantly improving. As I said before, we have launched leverage trading, perpetual contract trading, and wealth management products in addition to just spot trading. However, we don’t ignore the importance of spot trading. More mainstream, popular, and high-quality tokens have been listed, and up to now, there are 129 tokens and 313 trading pairs on CoinEx.
During the epidemic, we have never slowed down our development. Lacking of the OTC service has always been a shortage for CoinEx. In March, we partner with Simplex to integrate the first fiat onramp to our platform. People now can buy crypto with their credit cards, which lowers the threshold for more people to enter the crypto world. Moreover, we announced global strategic partnership with Matrixport to provide people with large amount of fiat to crypto needs the OTC service. These newly launched services also help to attract more users.
At the same time, CoinEx has been launched in Arabic, Italian, English, Japanese, Russian, Korean and other 16 languages. Earlier we also carried out product upgrades, making the UI and function sections clearer.
In terms of operations, we launched an upgraded CoinEx Ambassador program in March. To best utilize each ambassador’s personal strengths, there are four categories of CoinEx Ambassador with different responsibilities, namely Referral Ambassador, Marketing Ambassador, Operation Ambassador, and Business Ambassador, which will expand our brand’s exposure and help CoinEx grow into a more international exchange platform.
From March until now CoinEx has seen a 100% increase in user registrations. Why is that and are you able to see where they are coming from?
Eddie Jiang: Because of the efforts mentioned above, in 2020, we’ve seen an exponential increase in activity in just the past few months alone. In this year alone, CoinEx’s daily registered users increased by 100%. These new users mainly come from markets such as the Middle East, Asia Pacific, and more.
Interestingly, we saw an uptick in traffic from the Middle East in March. User growth in Southeast Asia also picked up significantly, newly registered users increased by 133.6% in April.
With Binance, BitMex, Huobi, Bybit, and Deribit, controlling most of the crypto futures and options markets, where do you see CoinEx fitting in? How do you plan to capture market share from these large exchanges?
Eddie Jiang: We won’t compete with others. We focus on ourselves to improve products and our goal is to be better than yesterday.
Our pace is solid and steady, instead of focusing on temporary heat and flow. We have always attached great importance of spot trading, and we are committed to be responsible for users’ investment. We have set up CoinEx Institution, which is dedicated on project research. A listing committee consist of core team members review and vote on projects recommended by the CoinEx Institution. In this way, fraud projects are avoided as much as possible.
Besides, we will focus on niche areas with great potential. For example, Southeast Asia and the Middle East. CoinEx can serve users in those countries well by providing a platform with rich cryptos to trade, and will pay more efforts on refined operations in different countries.
Moreover, CoinEx has a very complete ecosystem. Financial services, infrastructure, and ecological development, the three business units complement each other. The infrastructure BU is our cornerstone and is positioned as a defensive product; the financial service BU is a cash cow and is positioned as an aggressive product; the ecological development BU focuses on the public chain ecology and is the future infrastructure.
What is the geographical breakdown of the CoinEx userbase?
Eddie Jiang: The current proportion of CoinEx’s overseas users has reached 80% of the total registered users, and mainly in Australia, Southeast Asia, North America, Middle East and South Korea.
Do you have plans to focus on any certain jurisdictions? How will you do that?
Eddie Jiang: When we evaluate regions, two things matter: policy and potential.
Whether an exchange’s business expansion in a region is smooth or not largely depends on the region’s policies. If the region is not very friendly towards cryptocurrency or has repeated attitudes, there will be more difficulties and the cost will be much higher.
For a region’s development potential, we need to think about the demand and market development status. South Korea, Southeast Asia, the Middle East and other regions are all areas with good potential for cryptocurrency development. Compared with Europe and America, policy risks in these countries are lower, and the supervision mechanism is relatively complete. The public has a high degree of awareness of cryptocurrencies. Besides, some regions or countries have inflation problems due to political and economic reasons.
CoinEx will continue to focus on the Middle East and South Asia, which are relatively niche. India has just lifted ban on cryptocurrency trading this year, and there are many cryptocurrency investors in Indian. CoinEx can serve them well by providing a platform with rich cryptos to trade. More people in the Middle East are interested cryptos, especially in countries that are subject to economic sanctions or high inflation. For those people, cryptocurrencies are one of the best choices for asset preservation.
Since the CoinEx Ambassador program launched in March, it has been almost three months. We are conducting the second round of ambassador recruitment. This time, we will use the power of ambassadors to expand our recruitment coverage and strive to attract more crypto enthusiasts from all over the world to grow together with CoinEx. Moreover, we will launch the National Expansion plan and leverage on the CoinEx and ViaBTC mining pool resources, to further explore the Russian market. At the market level, we will make more PR efforts in local markets, and start refined operations.
What is CoinEx Chain and CoinEx DEX?
Eddie Jiang: CoinEx Chain is a public chain built on the Tendermint consensus protocol and the Cosmos SDK. It consists of three dedicated public chains parallel to each other. Among these three chains, CoinEx DEX meets the most basic needs of DeFi for token issuance, transfer, and transactions. The Smart Chain is designed to meet the needs of complex financial scenarios and delivers programmable cash. The Privacy Chain facilitates privacy and security.
On November 11, 2019, we took the lead in launching the Mainnet of CoinEx DEX. CoinEx DEX is the world’s first public chain dedicated to decentralized transactions. Users can easily manage their digital assets on it.
CoinEx DEX can fully satisfy the following conditions: users have private keys at their own disposal; transfers and transactions are all completed on-chain, which is 200% transparent and checkable; the issuance, transfer, and transaction of tokens do not require review or permission; the community governance and operation is decentralized, similar to EOS, and validators are introduced to the community ecosystem construction and governance. There are currently 41 validators.
It also has extreme performance. TPS reaches as high as 10,000 and transactions are confirmed within seconds. The transaction fee, 0.0001 US dollars for each transaction, is negligible.
Third, it’s simple and easy to use. The new operation interface design helps beginners get started quickly; with the one-click token issuing module, users only need to fill in a few items to issue tokens; the built-in automated market-making module guarantees liquidity.
How will CoinEx DEX improve the decentralized exchange space that has been unable to gain much adoption?
Eddie Jiang: There are many challenges and difficulties facing centralized exchanges. The first difficulty is security. Security is a huge concern for CEXs. Over the last 10 years, hackers have stolen more than $1.5 billion from centralized exchanges. In fact, research groups estimate that hackers stole somewhere between $950 Million and $1 Billion from centralized exchanges in 2018 alone. There were also incidents of coin thefts in other exchanges in 2019. Many exchanges, such as Mt. Gox, Youbit, were forced to file for bankruptcy and shut down as a result of hacks.
The second is high management costs. Centralized exchanges need to list a large number of cryptocurrencies and each of them have different trading pairs. That entails huge efforts in development and maintenance and, thus, high management costs.
The last is global policies. Cryptocurrency is faced with different regulatory policies in different countries. Every time a centralized exchange enters a country, it needs to adapt itself to local regulatory policies for compliance. This is a holdback for the exchange’s rapid market expansion globally. Such adaptation will also bring a huge learning cost for the exchange team.
Obviously, these problems can be well solved by DEX. CoinEx DEX is a true DEX with full open source and full community governance, as well as without depending on official nodes, websites, wallets, etc. On DEX, users are able to in charge of their own private keys and assets all by themselves. Their assets are more safe and secure. Transfers and transactions are all completed on-chain, which is 200% transparent and checkable; and the issuance, transfer, and transaction of tokens do not require review or permission. What’s more, CoinEx DEX provides a great and convenient user experience.
How will CoinEx Chain and DEX help the crypto industry as a whole?
Eddie Jiang: The public chain is the cornerstone of the blockchain industry. CoinEx Chain has the parallelism of multiple dedicated public chains, each of which performs its own functions, by cross-chaining for both high performance and flexibility.
CoinEx Chain is committed to building the next generation of blockchain financial infrastructure. It is a more complete ecosystem built around the DEX public chain. The DEX public chain is a dedicated public chain developed specifically for token issuance and trading and the biggest improvement on trading speed, so it only supports the necessary functions, not smart contracts.
But smart contracts are the foundation for building more complex financial applications. Outside the DEX public chain, CoinEx Chain also includes a Smart Chain that supports smart contracts.
Moreover, as privacy issues on the current blockchain have been criticized, it is one of the core tasks of CoinEx Chain to safeguard users’ privacy. Similar to the Smart Chain, the Privacy Chain specifically supports transaction privacy protection. With cross-chain circulation, it can improve the privacy characteristic of the entire CoinEx Chain ecosystem.
Nowadays, 1.7 million people in the world have no bank accounts; however, among them, two thirds are smartphone users with huge demands for financial services. The public chain will empower DeFi applications’ development and popularization, not only help more companies to seize the huge market opportunity, but also to bring lasting transformations and improvements in people’s lives.
With so many crypto exchanges, what is the future outlook of CoinEx when it comes to the crypto exchange space?
Eddie Jiang: It has been nearly 3 years since CoinEx has been launched, but it’s quite young for an entrepreneurial team. We have seen too many projects’ failures due to governance issues. CoinEx has a very elite team with high technical and management capabilities. In terms of business, CoinEx has gradually developed with diversified business and a complete ecosystem. It’s clear that the market will still grow very fast in the future, and the market size is still very large. We will continue to improve our products, put more efforts in marketing and operations, as well as look for more high-quality projects, to increase the number of users and transactions on the platform. Lay a solid foundation, and I’m sure the time will come for us to shine.
What updates is the CoinEx team most excited for?
Eddie Jiang: We are very excited about the National Expansion Plan which will be launched later this year. It is an important part in CoinEx’s globalization strategy. We will actively explore some new markets while consolidate the original ones. CoinEx will set aside 10 million US dollars to set up a “Pioneer Fund” to support this plan. This fund will be used to support local cryptocurrency projects and promote the development of the local cryptocurrency communities through investment or cooperation. Our goal this year is to invest in projects and communities that are conducive to expanding the CoinEx ecosystem in countries with high development potential.
Original article
Click HERE to register on CoinEx
submitted by CoinExcom to btc [link] [comments]

The White Dragon : A Canadian Dragon Portfolio

Alright guys, Ive been working on this for a while and a post on here by a guy describing his portfolio here was the final kick in the ass for me to put this together. I started writing this to summarize what Im doing for my friends who are beginners, and also for me to make some sense of it for myself
Hopefully parts of it are useful to you, and also ideally you guys can point out errors or have a suggestion or two. I'm posting this here as opposed to investing or canadianinvestor (blech) because they're just gonna tell me to buy an index fund.
This first section is a preamble describing the Canadian tax situation and why Im doing things the way that I am. Feel free to skip it if you dont care about that. Also, there might be mistake regarding what the laws are here so dont take my word for it and verify it for yourself please.
So here in Canada we have two types of registered accounts (theres actually more but whatver). There is the TFSA "Tax Free Savings Account", and RRSP "Registered Retirement Savings Account"
For the sake of simplicity, from the time you turn 18 you are allowed to deposit 5k (it changes year to year based on inflation etc)in each of them. That "room" accumulates retroactively, so if you haventdone anything and are starting today and you are 30 you have around 60k you can put in each of them. The prevailing wisdom is that you should max out the TFSA first and you'll see why in a minute.

TFSA is post tax deposits, with no capital gains or other taxes applied to selling your securities, dividends or anything else. You can withdraw your gains at any time, and the amount that you withdraw is added to the "room" you have for the next year. So lets say I maxed out my TFSA contributions and I take out 20k today, on January of next year I can put back in 20k plus the 5 or whatever they allow for that year. You can see how powerful this is. Theres a few limitations on what is eligable to be held in the TFSA such as bitcoin/bitcoin ETFs, overseas stocks that arent listed on NYSE, TSX, london and a few others. You can Buy to Open and Sell to Close call and put options as well as write Covered Calls.

The RRSP is pre-tax deposits and is a tax deferred scheme. You deposit to lower your income tax burden (and hopefully drop below a bracket) but once you retire you will be taxed on anything you pull out. Withdrawing early has huge penalties and isnt recommended. You are however allowed to borrow against it for a down payment as a first time home buyer. The strategy with these is that a youngperson entering the workforce is likely to be in a fairly low tax bracket and (hopefully) earns more money as they get older and more skilled so the RRSP has more value the greater your pre-taxincome is. You can also do this Self Directed. Its not relevant to this strategy but I included it for the sake of context.
Non registered accounts ( or any other situation, such as selling commercial real estate etc) is subject to a capital gains tax. In so far as I understand it, you add all your gains and losses up at the end of the year. If its a positive number, you cut that number IN HALF and add it to your regular pre-tax income. So if I made 60k from the dayjob and 20k on my margin account that adds up to 70k that I get taxed on. if its a loss, you carry that forward into the next year. Theres no distinction between long term and short term. Also physical PMs are treated differently and I'll fill that part in later once I have the details down.
The reason why all that babble is important is that my broker Questrade, which isnt as good as IB (the only real other option up here as far as Im aware) has one amazing feature that no other broker has: "Margin Power"
If you have a TFSA and a Margin account with them, you can link them together and have your securities in the TFSA collateralise your Margin account. Essentially, when it comes to the Maintenance Excess of the Margin Account QT doesnt care if its in the TFSA *or* the Margin!
You can see how powerful this is.
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So as you can tell by the title, a lot of this is heavily inspired by Chris Cole's paper "The Allegory of the Hawk and the Serpent". You can read it here: https://www.artemiscm.com/welcome#research
Between it, his interviews and my mediocre options skills at the time my mind was blown. Unfortunately I didnt know how to do the Long Volatility part until after the crash in March but I've since then had nothing but time to scour the internet and learn as much as I could.
The way I interpret this isnt necessarily "what you should have right now", but what abstracted model they were able to backtest that gave them the best performance over the 90 years. Also, a lot of my portfolio I already had before I started trying to build this.
As such my allocations dont match the proportions he gave. Not saying my allocations are better, just showing where they are at this time.
I'm going to describe how I do Long Volatility at the end rather than the beginning since the way *I* do it wont make sense until you see the rest of the portflio.

Physical PMs 22%
I'm not sure wether he intended this to be straight up physical gold or include miners and royalty streaming companies so I will just keep this as physical.
I consider Silver to be a non-expiring call option on gold, so that can live here too. I am actually *very* overweight silver and my strategy is to convert a large portion of it to gold (mostly my bars)
to gold as the ratio tightens up.
If youre into crypto, you can arguably say that has a place in this section.
If an ETF makes sense for part of your portfolio, I suggest the Sprott ones such as PHYS. Sprott is an honest business and they actually have the metal they say they have. If you have enough, you can redeem your shares from the Royal Canadian Mint. The only downside is that they dont have an options chain, so you cant sell covered calls etc. Simple enough I suppose.
One thing to bear in mind, there is a double edged sword with this class of assets. They're out of the system, theyre nobody's business but your own and theres no counter party. That
unfortunately means that you cant lever against it for margin or sell covered calls etc. You can still buy puts though (more on that later)

Commodity Trend (CTA) 10%
https://youtu.be/tac8sWPZW0w
Patrick Ceresna gave a good presentation on what this strategy is. Until I watched this video I just thought it meant "buy commodities". A real CTA does this with futures also so aside from the way he showed, there are two other ETFs that are worth looking at.
COM - This is an explicit trend following ETF that follows a LONG/FLAT strategy instead of LONG/SHORT on a pile of commodity futures. So if they get a "sell" signal for oil or soybeans they sell what they have and go to cash.
COMT- Holds an assortment of different month futures in different commodities, as well as a *lot* of various related shares in producers. Its almost a one stop shop commodities portfolio. Pays a respectable dividend in December
If you want to break the "rules" of CTA, and include equities theres a few others that are also worth looking at
KOL- This is a coal ETF. The problems with it are that a lot of the holdings dont have much to do with coal. One of them is a tractor company. A lot of the companies are Chinese so theres a bit of a red flag.
Obviously Thermal Coal, the kind used for heating and powerplants isnt in vogue and wont be moving forward...but coking coal is used for steel manufacturing and that ain't going anywhere. The dividend is huge, pays out in December. A very very small position might be worth the risk.
Uranium- I'm in URA because thats the only way for me to get exposure to Kazatoprom (#1 producer), which is 20% of the holdings. The other 20% is Cameco (#2 producer)and then its random stuff.
Other than that I have shares in Denison which seems like its a good business with some interesting projects underway. I'm still studying the uranium space so I dont really have much to say about it of any value.
RSX- Russia large caps. If you dont want to pick between the myriad of undervalued, high dividend paying commodity companies that Russia has then just grab this. It only pays in December but it has a liquid options chain so you can do Covered Calls in the meantime if you want.
NTR- Nutrien, canadian company that was formed when two others merged. They are now the worlds largest potash producer. Pretty good dividend. They have some financial difficulties and the stocks been in a downtrend forever. I feel its a good candidate to watch or sell some puts on.
I'm trying to come up with a way to play agriculture since this new phase we're going to be entering is likely to cause huge food shortages.

EURN and NAT- I got in fairly early on the Tanker hype before it was even hype as a way to short oil but I got greedy and lost a lot of my gains. I pared down my position and I'm staying for the dividend.
If you get an oil sell signal, this might be a way to play that still.

Fixed Income/Bonds 10%

Now, I am not a bond expert but unless youre doing some wacky spreads with futures or whatever... I dont see much reason to buy government debt any more. If you are, youre basically betting that they take rates negative. Raoul Pal of Real Vision is pretty firm in his conviction that this will happen. I know better than to argue with him but I dont see risk/reward as being of much value.
HOWEVER, I found two interesting ETFs that seem to bring something to this portfolio
IVOL- This is run by Nancy Davis, and is comprised of TIPS bonds which are nominally inflation protected (doubt its real inflation but whatever) overlayed with some OTC options that are designed to pay off big if the Fed loses control of the long end of the yield curve, which is what might happen during a real inflation situation. Pays out a decent yield monthly
TAIL- This is a simpler portfolio of 10yr treasuries with ladder of puts on the SPX. Pays quarterly.

Equities 58% (shared with options/volatility below)
This is where it gets interesting, obviously most of this is in mining shares but before I get to those I found some interesting stuff that I'm intending to build up as I pare down my miners when the time comes to start doing that.
VIRT- I cant remember where I saw this, but people were talking about this as a volatility play. Its not perfect, but look at the chart compared to SPY. Its a HFT/market making operation, the wackier things get the more pennies they can scalp. A 4% dividend isnt shabby either.
FUND- This is an interesting closed end fund run by Whitney George, one of the principals at Sprott. He took it with him when he joined the company. Ive read his reports and interviews and I really like his approach to value and investing. He's kind of like if Warren Buffett was a gold bug. Theres 120 holdings in there, mostly small caps and very diverse...chicken factories, ball bearings all kinds of boring ass shit that nobody knows exists. Whats crucial is that most of it "needs to exist". Between him, his family and other people at Sprott they control 40% or so of the shares, so they definitely have skin in the game. Generous dividend.
ZIG- This is a "deep value" strategy fund, run by Tobias Carlisle. He has a fairly simple valuation formula called the Acquirer's Multiple that when he backtested it, is supposed to perform very well. He did an interview with Chris Cole on real Vision where he discusses how Value and Deep Value havent done well recently, but over the last 100 years have proven to be very viable strategies. If we feel that theres a new cycle brewing, then this strategy may work again moving forward.

I want to pause and point out something here, Chris Cole, Nassim Taleb and the guys at Mutiny Fund spend a lot of effort explaining that building a portfolio is a lot like putting together a good basketall team. They need to work together, and pick up each others slack
A lot of the ETFs I'm listing here are in many ways portfolios in and of themselves and are *actively managed*. I specifically chose them because they follow a methodology that I respect but I can't do myself because I dont have the skill, temperament or access to.
The next one is a hidden gem and ties into this. I'm not sure how much more upside there is in this one but man was I surprised.
SII- Sprott Inc. I *never* see people listing this stock in their PMs portfolios. A newsletter I'm subscribed to described this stock as the safest way to play junior miners. Their industry presence, intellectual capital and connections means that they get *the best* private placement deals in the best opportunities. I cant compete with a staff like theirs and I'm not going to try. I bought this at 2.50, and I liked the dividend. Since then they did a reverse split to get on the NYSE and like the day after the stock soared.
When it comes to mining ETFS I like GOAU and SILJ the best. None of their major holdings are dead weight companies that are only there because of market cap. I dont want Barrick in my portfolio etc.
SGDJ is a neat version of GDXJ.
Aside from that my individual miners/royalty companies are (no particular order)
MMX
SAND
PAAS
PGM
AUM
AG
MUX
RIO- Rio2 on the tsx, not rio tinto
KTN
KL
Options/Volatility: varies
So this is where we get to the part about options, Volatility and how I do it. I started out in the options space with The Wheel strategy and the Tastytrade approach of selling premium. The spreads and puts I sell, are on shares listed above, in fact some of those I dont hold anymore.
Theres tons of stuff on this in thetagang and options so I wont go into a whole bunch (and you shouldnt be learning the mechanics from me anyway) but theres one thing I want to go over before it gets wild.
If I sell a Cash Secured Put, from a risk management perspective its identical to just buying 100 shares of the underlying security. You are equally "Short Vol" as well, it just that with options
its a little more explicit with the Greeks and everything. But if I use my margin that I was talking about earlier, then I can still collect the premium and the interest doesnt kick in unless Im actually assigned the shares.
But if I sell too many puts on KL or AG, and something happens where the miners get cut down (and lets be real, they all move together) my margin goes down and then I get assigned and kaboom...my account gets blown up
So what I need to do, is balance out the huge Short Vol situation in my portfolio, be net Long Vol and directly hedge my positions. Since the overwhelming majority of my equities are all tied to bullion this is actually a very easy thing to do.

Backspreads
https://youtu.be/pvX5_rkm5x0
https://youtu.be/-jTvWOGVsK8
https://youtu.be/muYjjm934iY

So I set this up so the vast majority of my margin is tied up in these 1-2 or even 1-3 ratio put spreads that *I actually put on for a small credit*, and roll them every once in a while. I run them on SLV, and GDX.
I keep enough room on my margin so I can withstand a 10% drawdown before it sets off the long end of the spreads and then I can ride it out until it turns around and we keep the PM bull market going.
Theres another cool spread I've been using, which is a modified Jade Lizard; if already hold shares, I'll sell a put, sell a covered call, and use some of the premium to buy a longer dated call. Ive been running this on AG mostly.
I have a few more spreads I can show you but Im tired now so it'll have to wait for later.
As I said multiple times, I do intend to trim these miners later but now isnt the time for that IMO. I'm also monitoring this almost full time since I have an injury and have nothing better to do until I heal :p
submitted by ChudBuntsman to pmstocks [link] [comments]

[For Hire] Marketing and SEO

My name is Zack Frederick and I started doing marketing several years ago as i began my first yoga ‘e-business', realising very quickly that the difference between me and the next John Doe wasn’t the product but the presentation. So I set about, by trial and error, learning how I could sell more Yoga mats than John Doe. It wasn’t long before I realised I was very good at the marketing aspect, and I didn’t really like things like warehousing and distribution.
I’ve compiled a few free tips for general marketing and SEO.

Brand awareness

First off. Influencers will not magically make your website successful. You have to be your own influencer. Over my tenor, I have spent thousands on social media analysis, rebranding and learning tricks like sticking state names across American products or even changing the colour of my website depending on the demographics of my audience. Spoilers, guys love red. Here’s an example data set. https://imgur.com/gallery/7OHIx
Last year, I ran a campaign for one of my shoe clients, and we used the pride of state consumers to grow his shoe business. I researched the best colours to use for different states and gave him a list, we put the state names across his shoes and marketed directly to them through instagram. It wasn’t long before his conversion metrics were soaring.
Here's an example report from one of my clients - https://prnt.sc/iisqv8

Value

I have worked with a lot of musicians, a big part of them started with low view, audio-only videos. I learnt quickly that for them to achieve success they had to provide value, so i told them to create videos. They did and then ta-da, they had 4500 views when they only had 200 view music videos before. For the next step, I even got them contacts with massive digital celebrities. My proudest connection having been ‘Ninja’ during the height of his fortnite campaign, I organised the marketing behind several viral Fortnite music parodies with now millions of views.

Trend riding

Make use of trends in your business. If something is so mainstream and big, why ignore it? In the past I have made use of the political trends in the American election with trump AND hillary brands on some of my clients products, with the pro trump and pro hillary supporters wanting to sport their political beliefs no matter the cost.
I see a lot of website based businesses underuse social media with broad attempts at Facebook ads and Instagram ads, ill go to digital marketing agencies and see they either have no social following or a huge botted one. It's a terrible idea to buy followers, if you want to cut corners then you should look at buying a smaller business with a bigger social following.
Here’s the impressions from a tweet I made on the first day of creating a company a twitter platform and using trend riding and collaboration to grow it https://prnt.sc/huziu6 4K Impressions on one tweet in 15 minutes - we hit 80k impressions in the first day. I did this from simply mimiking the formula for success from a similiar company account, i don't want to try change the magic formula for success.

Direction

Adapt

You really do have to stay in touch with your business to know what's working and what isn't, companies like Toys R Us refused to do that and stuck with huge stockpiles of star wars toys and then they collapsed. Blockbusters where ahead of the curve for digital movies and then they refused to change, Netflix changed and Netflix won. Amazon learnt to use online selling and left companies like Tescos with financial crisis.
The big boom in marketing that I’ve seen is social media marketing, marketers can create huge social following for companies and use that platform to sell content for extremely low costs in comparison to the tens of thousands it costs to use other platforms such as radio. Social media marketing has become somewhat controversial, but it is important to always stay open minded.

Collaboration** & Viral content

I can not stress the importance of working with other people. Every billionaire i know of has had a mentor, every big company success story had business partners. I've had far more success in clients who have listened to me and done collaborative work with digital celebs, with a dog product business making thousands of sales when they worked with vlogger Zoella and gave her free products.
Viral content is very important because every Youtuber with over 1 million subscribers has started off big and managed to keep it big, nobody grinded and slowly rose up at an equal exponent. Hard work is fine but being consistent and mixing it up, copying the viral content of others is an easy way of bringing in secondary viewership and traffic. Pewdiepie, the biggest youtuber on the planet, started with viral horror content. Ninja, the biggest streamer, grinded for 7 years but only truly struck gold with the virality of Fortnite. So it makes sense to repeat their methods.

Key words

It is an obvious thing to say but it's neglected, key words are very important. I had a crypto business come to me and ask why their site wasnt doing very well, and i looked through it and saw they never mentioned anything beyond bitcoin. Bitcoin is a very expensive key word to market, with costs of the raw word being as high as 38$ per click. I had to bring them down to earth with harsh truths, i rewrote their entire site using SEM tools in mind - with key words and phrases like "Altcoin exchange" and using the names of the top 100 altcoins across the site.

SEO

Search Engine Optimisation is the name given to increasing the value and raw volume of your organic traffic. A successful website always wants as many of the most likely consumer base to encounter their product because that’s the hardest point of digital business. Your websites SEO is determined by crawlers which regularly check up on your website and update their index which is later used by an algorithm to order results when someone ‘googles’ something.
Today I’m going to be talking you through some key points about SEO that I personally audit for businesses.

Domains

Https://Www.Example.Com is an example of something we call a ‘root domain’ which is made up of protocol (https://) subdomain (www.) domain name (example) and top-level domain (.com). These are the basic parts. It’s important that the protocol is the best and safest it can be or else google will punish you. It’s also important your domain name and top-level domain are appropriate and readable. The words used in your subdomain can also affect how customers interpret your website, websites can be named after their market base for easy marketing. In addition, the age and previous registrations of your domain matter. It’s important these factors are appropriately considered in your website. Be minimal with subdomains.

Targeting

Google knows where it’s users are and what they’re using from their browser data, IPs and MACs and then matches them with websites in their areas or appropriate to searches. Ever since the infamous 2016 update ‘Possum’ it is not something you can ignore. Even jobs based websites had to use the meta data ‘Jobs Schema’ (from 2017 onwards) to tell google where your website was focused. Location specific landing pages matter. You have to pay credence to DNS (domain name server) and Glue to keep TTL (time to load) and mobile in mind, especially with more mobile users than ever. CMS (customs) is also part of this discussion: themes and plugins are a factor in Google’s ranking. One way to improve TTL is through CDN’s and we have to consider how we approach them to rank better. Sometimes, you might face penalties and there are ways to know; that’s a little too hard to explain here but PM me for more.

Content

Nobody loves a book more than google. Robots will read all your website, even the stuff humans don’t bother with. Things like duplication will annoy Google who doesn’t like reading things twice. CTA’s (buttons basically) have to go somewhere nice and if they don’t work properly google will punish you. Human biases are important too. The user experience will effect their retention and Google will clock that. There’s also lots of minor things that can stack up: Filenames (help you rank on Images) Thin content (Google sees it as lazy) phrase diversity (spamming key words is noticed) and URL structures too! Make sure your in and outbound links are healthy as well as having keyword mapping where you assign the correct words to the right pages. Make sure your anchor texts (viewable when linking) are descriptive yet succinct. And finally: link velocity, a healthy eco system of link building is important to longevity and renewed SEO.

Technical Stuff.

Consistent anchor elements are important to prevent 404s. Don’t use abbreviations with naming files and folders. Limit use of dates for file folder names. Your site architecture has to be simple and close to the root domain so the click depth isn’t too great! Links to and from your site can’t be dead ends, and use breadcrumbs! Be wary of canonical issues from similar content across multiple URLs. Treat Cookies and Session IDs properly, privacy laws are ever changed and mismatching them can be dangerous. There’s lots more to go into like header status codes, site maps, GSC Crawl Errors but Reddit has a text limit so I’ve deleted some of my post.

PM me if interested in my services or with questions.

submitted by Draemeth to forhire [link] [comments]

What's Next For Bitcoin - July, August 2020 CC TO BITCOIN LATEST 2020 METHOD  CARDXTRA Weekly Analysis & Forecast for BitCoin, Ethereum, Ripple Crypto Bitcoin Price Why Does Bitcoin Have Value ?

For Bitcoin’s ledger to be manipulated, a hacker would need to be in control of at least a third of the mining hardware. But as this miner would then be winning the lion’s share of new bitcoins, it wouldn’t be in their best interest to attack the network. For one thing, Bitcoin’s high value makes mining very costly. Compared to them Bitcoin is a very impractical measure of value. Conclusion: Bitcoin as a medium of exchange. The low transaction costs and decentralized system makes Bitcoin an interesting medium of exchange. But the unacceptable long transaction times and the unpredictability as a measure of value makes it unattractive to use. The supply of bitcoin is impacted in two different ways. First, the bitcoin protocol allows new bitcoins to be created at a fixed rate. New bitcoins are introduced into the market when miners Similarly, bitcoin’s current utility is limited; its real value lies in allowing money to move at internet speeds and allowing it to be held in an autonomous fashion. P.S. All our Bitcoin and cryptocurrency research is helped made possible by our sponsors: Kraken is a cryptocurrency exchange where you can buy, sell and trade cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum. Kraken is consistently rated the best and most secure cryptocurrency exchange and is where I go any time I need to make a trade.

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What's Next For Bitcoin - July, August 2020

The more the network of Bitcoin users and merchants grows, and the more secure and advanced the system becomes, the bigger Bitcoin’s value in USD and other currencies can get. If you’re looking for the current, up-to-the-minute Bitcoin Price, simply view the information and charts below to see what the price of Bitcoin is right now in your local currency. Bitcoin[a] (₿) is a cryptocurrency invented in 2008 by an unknown person or group of people using the name Satoshi Nakamoto and started in 2009[16] when its source code was released as open ... Bitcoin ( BTC ) price begins a new week ranging north of $9,000 as it awaits cues from macro markets — what could be in store for the coming days? Cointelegraph takes a look at the major factors ... Bitcoin ( BTC ) must reclaim $9,400 as soon as possible in order to change its bearish course, says Cointelegraph Markets analyst filbfilb . In an update on social media on July 16, the popular ...

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