Author Archives: Al Soori Jakub

What are NFTs?

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So an NFT is not the artwork itself, but a kind of digital certificate or signature. You can think of the NFT as a unique notation of who owns a particular thing. This thing can be, for example, a small pixel image like the now famous Cryptopunks, but also the very first Twitter tweet or digital music. The NFT serves as a certificate that states: person X is currently the owner of file Y, which is located at Internet address Z.

The abbreviation NFT stands for a non-fungible token. Without foreign words: a non-exchangeable token. A token is an asset, in simpler terms, a token. A counterexample to the NFT, i.e. a fungible, exchangeable token, would be a ten-euro bill. You can exchange this banknote at will for other ten-euro bills. The value and function of the banknote remain identical. (The serial number of the banknote is different – but that doesn’t matter for the purpose). A bitcoin or a beer token at the funfair would also be fungible tokens.

Now, what makes such a token non-exchangeable is that it is part of a blockchain. All transactions are publicly recorded in such a digital register. The blockchain is also distributed decentrally in different locations and represents a sophisticated accounting system. It is therefore not possible to transfer an NFT to someone else without authorization, without this transaction being visibly stored in the blockchain. The provenance history is therefore always clear – unlike with analog artworks, where provenance is often a problem. At the same time, the NFT records to which object it refers. Therefore, an NFT that refers to the picture of a cryptopunk is something different than an NFT that refers to the album of a music group.

Multiple NFTs can belong to one object. This may be by design when the NFTs are created. One use case would be “limited editions” of artwork, perhaps 1,000 copies of a graphic or piece of music. It is also conceivable that an NFT refers to a part of an object, for example, a tenth of a painting or a third of a piece of real estate. One problem: NFTs can also be created for an object without permission. The NFT Thefts initiative calls plagiarism, or pirated art, a growing problem in the NFT space.

Nowe profilowe za 12 mln zł. O co chodzi z Bored Ape Yacht Club NFT?

Proof of Work vs Proof of Stake

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You may have heard two similar terms in the cryptocurrency world: proof-of-work and proof-of-stake. These terms are used to distinguish whether a cryptocurrency is mined or not. However, sometimes the distinction between these terms can be confusing. Let’s take a look at what the difference between these terms is.

Let’s start with the simplest part – the proof-of-work (PoW) algorithm. This algorithm requires people to use computer hardware to process transactions. This hardware, also known as mining, uses its computing power to solve mathematical problems and is rewarded with a cryptocurrency. Bitcoin, and now Ethereum, still run on this algorithm. It was the first generation of blockchain, used in Bitcoin as the first cryptocurrency to use it.

The goal of proof-of-stake (PoS) is to achieve the same result as PoW – secure verification of transactions on the blockchain, but in this case, verifiers do so by providing a certain number of cryptocurrency tokens to a so-called staker, where they lock up their cryptocurrency and get a chance to verify the transaction, thereby receiving the associated reward and ensuring the security of the network. PoS is the next generation of how blockchain can work. It has several advantages over proof-of-work, such as you don’t need a super-powerful computer to verify transactions.

How India will rule the world?

Reading Time: 2 minutesWith the second largest population and the youngest youth in the world, India is taking the lead in providing new startups and technologies. Right now, the country is entering the fourth industrial revolution, which means that the current period will be the most demanded new technological innovations. The massive influence of youth and teenagers makes the need for new apps bigger by the day.

India broke the record in raising funds for aspirant startups. In 2019, they managed to raise around $14.5B, mostly from investors from Asian countries like Hong Kong, Singapore but also from companies located in Mumbai or New Delhi. The positive phenomenon which we may observe is that most young people who already sold their startups to big companies are not afraid of investing in their younger colleagues’ ideas.

According to the World Economic Forum, over half of India’s workers will need reskilling by 2022. To the progression of the informatization of the country, lots of people hold jobs that will no longer be needed. Most of us associate India with crowded streets filled with regular workers performing not complicated actions. That point of view may drastically change in a few coming years. For the needs of IT employees, many companies will provide more accessible techniques of teaching skills needed for the job in the technology sector.

From the investors’ point of view, the future of India is very optimistic, taking into consideration that the potential target of users is still growing. The current view of India probably will be much different in the future.

Sources:

Indian tech startups raised a record $14.5B in 2019

https://www.weforum.org/our-impact/over-half-of-india-s-workers-will-need-reskilling-by-2022-we-set-up-a-taskforce-to-help

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Does Apple slow down your phone?

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As almost everyone knows, our phones slow down over time and unfortunately, there is no hack to avoid it. We are already used to the fact that mobile devices will last for around 2 or 3 years. It starts with frustrating phone jamming, then it comes to bugs in simple applications, and ends up with buying a new model. Producers already made statements about the problem and some of them are really interesting, taking into consideration that users often blame the companies for maximizing profits, by forcing people to buy their new products. This time, we will take Apple as an example.

At the beginning of 2017, few months after the new iPhone 7 was released, users of iPhones 6, 6s, and 6s Plus, started to complain that their phones do not work as well as they used to. The biggest issue was the battery, whose life was decreasing with every update. John Poole, founder of Primate Labs and Geekbench developer, decided to make some research and compared the data from iPhone 6 and 7. He found out that Apple uses much faster processors than other companies and that is why the battery is also more overloaded. After his publishment, Apple made an official explanation that lithium-ion batteries may not work properly in cold conditions and the phone might shut down to protect its electronic components.

The accusations made the CEO of Apple Tim Cook publish a statement that their actions were all in service of the user and they should have been clearer at the beginning. Since then, the firm added the function to control the condition of the battery and informing the users when an eventual update would be harmful to their devices. As users, we are also able to get guidance on how to maximize the potential and health of the battery.

Does Apple slow down your phone to maximize the profits? In my opinion, they do not. The company provides updates directed to the newest models whose parameters are always more modern comparing to the older ones. Also, software houses and developers write new applications in code dedicated to the latest version of iOS.

Sources:

https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/gadgets-and-tech/news/iphone-slow-why-running-apple-ios-update-battery-performance-a8926781.html

https://www.vox.com/2017/12/22/16807056/apple-slow-iphone-batteries

Why Israel is called a start-up nation?

Reading Time: 2 minutesIsrael is the place in which more start-ups have been created in recent years than in all of Europe. With a population of around 8.5 million, there is one start-up per 1400 people, making Israel a leader in terms of the highest number of ventures per capita. Hence, it is not surprising that world giants such as Google, Intel, or Yahoo have opened their research centers in the Israeli Silicon Valley called Silicon Wadi. There are several interesting aspects behind Israel’s technological success, which I will try to describe down below.

At the end of the 1980s, when the country was slowly emerging from the economic crisis, there was a huge influx of Jewish immigrants from countries under the Soviet Union, the estimated number of coming people was 800,000. For comparison, it is as if 8 million new inhabitants have moved to Poland at this moment. The only way to generate jobs for that many people in such a depressed economy was to reinvent the country. The government created a venture capital program called Yozma, the main assumption was to attract foreign investors for the Israeli entrepreneurs. The premise of the program was that the government would carry the risk of investments giving the investors all the regards. The idea worked that well that between 1991 and 2000, venture capital investments increased from $58 million to $3.3 billion, making Yozma the backbone of the venture market.

Another main reason for Israel’s technological success is immigration. The whole country is based on people who came from different parts of the world and as we all know, every culture has its mentality even when it comes to topics related to business. The possibility of working in such a diverse environment makes Israel a perfect place for brainstorming debates where almost everybody has something completely new to add. Also, because of the multicultural population, lots of young people can communicate fluently in more than one or two languages.

Mandatory service in the military plays a very important role in the future thinking of young entrepreneurs. In Israel, even women are obligated to serve the country for at least two years. First of all, being a soldier at such a young age teaches making difficult and risky decisions that have a very big impact on the future professional life. Another advantage is surrounding with peers from different regions which gives a wide view of the needs of the country.

To summarizing, Israeli youth are aware of how their country was created, topics such as venture capital investments are nothing new for them. This also includes the ability to take risks and primarily, courage.

Sources:

https://www.intheblack.com/articles/2017/11/01/israel-start-up-nation

https://www.clearviewp.com/history-of-venture-capital-in-israel/

http://www.yozma.com/overview/

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