Category Archives: Blockchain

Opera is launching a new Web 3 project – ,,Crypto Browser”

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Recently company Opera has launched it’s new Web 3 project into beta. Crypto Browser Project is an internet browser with built-in Web 3 features. In the statement Jorgen Arnesen, EVP Mobile at Opera, says that: ,,Opera’s Crypto Browser Project promises a simpler, faster, more private Web3 experience for users. It simplifies a Web3 user experience that is often bewildering for mainstream users.

One of the key features built inside a internet browser is crypto wallet that is compatible with some major crypotcurrency: BTC, ETH, but in february 2020 company plans to anounce compatibility with Solana and Polygon. Browser also include access to cryptocurrency and NFT exchanges as well as aupport for decentralized apps (Dapps)

With the news emerging daily about new Web 3 project it is interesting to see how Opera ,,Crypto Browser” project will develop. Estabilished company and strong team are some of the benefits of this project but with growing intrest circulating around Web 3 it can be dificult for Opera team to

With the news emerging daily about new Web 3 project it is interesting to see how Opera ,,Crypto Browser” project will develop. Estabilished company and strong team are some of the benefits of this project but with growing intrest circulating around Web 3 it can be dificult for Opera team to approprietly develop it

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Will blockchain help in the fight against climate change?

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Source: https://www.blockchainforclimate.org/the-bitmo-platform

Blockchain technology has been with us for quite a while. We most often hear about it, when the topic of cryptocurrencies is being touched. Our feelings about it may differ, from supporting the technological change to being against the high energy consumption it requires to exist. Since blockchain drew the attention of the mainstream we have been bombarded with the news regarding how bad for the environment it is. However, is it totally bad, or is there a way that we can use the technology for the common good?

During the ongoing climate summit COP26, Blockchain for Climate Foundation launched the platform helping countries to achieve their climate goals. BITMO (this is the name of the platform) will allow signatures to the Paris Agreement to issue and exchange CO2 limits easily.

How exactly will it work?

The whole platform is built on the ethereum blockchain and allows to create “Blockchain Internationally Transferred Mitigation Outcomes” which are ERC-1155 Non-Fungible Tokens. Each token is equivalent to one tonne of CO2. When the tokens are created they can be easily transferred to other countries. The whole idea of trading CO2 limits is widely known, when a certain country knows that it will not reach the limit it can sell its share to another country that is willing to exceed the limit. The platform itself will increase the transparency and pace of this procedure.

Does it mean that blockchain is good for the climate?

Not exactly, we will still see great amounts of energy consumed by blockchain algorithms. Nevertheless, the platform shows that the technology has the potential to be implemented in environmental actions. We cannot also forget that there are many projects developing new blockchains, ones that are more efficient and less energy demanding.


Sources:
https://www.blockchainforclimate.org/
https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/blockchain-for-climate-foundation-launches-bitmo-platform-at-cop26-301414924.html

Crypto Wallet

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Crypto wallet is a device (or program) that lets you store and transfer all your digital assets.

In todays world of cryptocurrencies, safety of one assets becomes a number 1 priority for every investor. With the recent news circulating web about Binance holding all withdrawals from their exchange many people started to wonder what does it exactly mean to own a cryptocurrency and what happens if they will lose access to exchange. Investors starts looking for more risk-free storage for their coins and one of the easiest and most efficent storage programs/devices are crypto wallets

How does it work?

`Every wallet works by number being generated with length that is suitable for given crypto technology. This number is then converted to a private key using crytpographic aglorythm used on a given blockchain. Then using a private key as a ,,base” public key is being generated. The two keys has diffrent usage:private key is used to send and access user crypto and the public key is used for receiving assets from other users,companies etc. Wallet that can be a program online or a physical device, store both keys making transactions possible

Pros of crypto wallets

With wallet and a private key user is the only person with access to their digital crypto. There is no third-party that can monitor and manage assets on a account making user their own bank

Cons

Main negative asspect of crypto wallet is user responsibilty. In case of sharing a private key to someone or losing a seed phrases user can forfeit access to theirs crypto, there is no third party that can return users money.

Sources:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cryptocurrency_wallet

https://www.investopedia.com/best-bitcoin-wallets-5070283

https://www.businessinsider.com/crypto-wallet?IR=T

Coinbase One Beta

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What is Coinbase?

coinbase.com

Coinbase is the largest cryptocurrency exchange in the US. They allow users to buy and sell crypto as well as send coins between wallets (it is both an exchange and a wallet). Their business model is having users pay small fees for making trades, but now they are introducing a brand new strategy.

Coinbase One

The new service they offer is Coinbase One. It’s basically a paid subscription that enables users to trade without fees (however, they will still have to pay spread fees). Also, it includes features like priority support and account protection feature (up to $1 million). The service is available for a small portion of users for the time being. The company hasn’t told yet, how much Coinbase One subscription will cost.

euronews.com

Will it increase their revenue?

Well, it depends on whether the feedback from users will be positive as it’s in an early stage. For sure, it can provide a much more stable source of revenue compared to users paying fees for each trade. “We are focused on the long-term where we will continue to diversify our offerings” said Alesia Haas CFO of Coinbase. Moreover, it’s a response to their biggest rival which is Robinhood, and their subscription service called Robinhood Gold.

Sources:

https://www.theverge.com/2021/11/4/22763080/coinbase-one-subscription-service-trading-fees-cryptocurrency

https://www.theblockcrypto.com/post/123134/coinbase-is-testing-a-subscription-service-with-zero-trading-fees-and-prioritized-support

https://help.coinbase.com/en/coinbase/getting-started/crypto-education/what-is-coinbase

https://www.euronews.com/next/2021/04/14/coinbase-is-about-to-become-one-of-us-richest-companies-what-is-it-and-why-is-it-important

Bitcoin has risen in price to a record 50 thousand dollars. In six months, it grew by 350%

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The cost of bitcoin at the auction on February 16 reached a record high of 50 thousand dollars. Half a year ago, the cryptocurrency was worth about 11 thousand dollars. Since that time, its value has increased by 350%.

The rapid growth of quotations began in the fall of 2020. Back in October, Bitcoin was worth about $ 11,000, and in December, its value exceeded $ 20,000. In January, quotes exceeded $ 40,000.

After that, bitcoin’s cost returned to the level of 33 thousand dollars, but in February, there was a recent jump in the rate. The auction was influenced by the news that the car manufacturer Tesla has invested $ 1.5 billion in bitcoin and will accept cryptocurrency as payment.

How Bitcoin grew in price during the coronavirus?
Bitcoin began to rise noticeably in March 2020 after the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic. In connection with the coronavirus’s spread, the governments of various countries have introduced restrictive measures, which led to a slowdown in business activity.

The US and EU have decided to stimulate their economies with additional spending. Many investors believe that massive stimulus measures will weaken the euro and dollar. There are also fears that an increase in money supply will lead to an acceleration in inflation. Against the backdrop of these concerns, investments in bitcoins have increased, the supply of which is limited.

Also, experts and investors expect the use of cryptocurrencies in the traditional financial system to increase. The decisions of individual companies indicate this. For example, earlier payment services Square and PayPal, which about 300 million people in total use, added the ability to buy cryptocurrencies to their applications.

The previous maximum of quotations was recorded in December 2017, when the cost of bitcoin was approaching the $ 20 thousand mark. Then the quotes rose sharply in a few weeks, and then there was a collapse, and in a few months, bitcoin fell in price to 3.2 thousand dollars.
However, the current growth is different from what happened in 2017. At that time, the cryptocurrency was bought mainly by private investors from Asia, and now institutional investors and large companies, mainly from the USA and Europe, participate in trading.

Some experts still consider bitcoin as a “bubble,” the value of which will collapse sooner or later. Even investors anticipating the growth of quotes warn that cryptocurrency trading remains exceptionally volatile, and sharp price fluctuations should be expected.

However, questions remain as to whether cryptocurrencies have any value. Some experts fear that investments in bitcoin and its analogs may be lost.

Challenges of the digital era

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In today’s era of digitalization, data has surpassed oil in becoming the world’s most valuable resource. It is a strategic asset, commonly referred to as a “new currency”. A testimonial to this is the fact that the five highest valued listed companies in the world are all technology and digital market operators. Their impressive valuations are largely a result of extensive consumer data aggregation, which fuels machine learning and revenue generating processes. While the possibilities of what can be done with data are endless, it’s important to consider the significant privacy, political and legal concerns that have developed as a result of corporate data processing in recent years.

The most important issues surrounding data gathering are neither technological, nor commercial, but rather legal and social. They center around the fundamental right to privacy, safeguarded on an international level by Article 12 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. While we also have national protections in place, it is clear that the existing privacy laws are no longer fit for their original intended purpose. Despite constantly increasing volumes of personal information handled by private companies, privacy standards are deteriorating. Consumers, often unaware of the actual value of their online contributions to data mining algorithms, are being deprived of any bargaining power. With limited options to meaningfully opt-out, they have little choice but to accept arcane and non-negotiable privacy policies. One study found that an average internet user would need over 30 working days per year just to read through them. Such information overload, in combination with several other factors, leads individuals to progressively lose control over their digital identities.

 

 

There are also profound concerns about accountability of tech giants. The possibility of surveillance, profiling and hacks are just some of the triggers that have contributed to the case of serious public anxiety that we feel today. In 2018, hackers were able to access the private information of over 150 million users of MyFitnessPal. The Cambridge Analytica scandal was an even more striking example of how access to large datasets may allow private companies to peddle misinformation, thereby undermining democratic processes.

Beyond strict data protection concerns, there is an important interplay with law and fair competition. A significant peculiarity of online services is that they are often provided at “zero price”. This is due to the network effects in dual-sided business models, where cross-financing is enabled by revenue made through advertising and by trading information with data brokers. As a result, the concentration of user data can entrench market power and contribute to higher barriers to entry. Data-driven mergers often occur in order to eliminate nascent competitors, yielding serious exclusionary effects in extremely highly concentrated digital markets. Consequently, there is little incentive for the incumbents to innovate and provide users with optimal privacy protection. Given these negative developments as well as the industry’s general tendency towards monopolization, a wholesome regulatory reform seems inevitable. The EU General Data Protection Regulation and California’s Consumer Protection Act are the best examples of increased awareness surrounding the issues of privacy and transparency of tech giants. They also give hope for greater scrutiny of digital market operators worldwide. Yet, there is no doubt that technological innovations can increase productivity, accelerate business processes and automate mundane tasks. Indeed, it was technological tools such as Zoom, Microsoft Teams or Skype that allowed us to continue working and studying, despite the global pandemic. Thus, it is important to

Overall, while there is a clear need for global action to mitigate some of the risks, we must be careful not to squelch innovation and opportunities of the digital age. Ultimately, it is all about the balance between embracing innovation and effectively safeguarding fundamental rights and freedoms.

Sources:

1. M. Vestager, ‘Competition in a big data world’, DLD 16, Munich, 17 January 2016.

2. A.M. McDonald, L.F. Cranor, ‘The Cost of Reading Privacy Policies’ (2008) 4 I/S: A Journal of Law and Policy for the Information Society.

3. G. Colangelo, M. Maggiolino, ‘Data Protection in Attention Markets: Protecting Privacy through Competition?’ (2017) 8 Journal of European Competition Law & Practice.

4. A.D. Chirita, ‘Data-Driven Mergers Under EU Competition Law’ in The Future of Commercial Law: Ways Forward for Harmonisation, J. Linarelli & O. Akseli (Hart Publishing, 2019), p. 51.