McAfee Still Believes in Bitcoin - Finance and Funding
McAfee Still Believes in Bitcoin - Finance and Funding
The Best Bitcoin Alternatives | Ethereum, Litecoin, Ripple
21 | May | 2020 | Bitcoin News
Here's why 21 is the most exciting bitcoin company right
Bitcoin Startup 21 Announces $116 Million All-Star Backing
Masari: Simple Private Money
Masari (MSR) is a scalability-focused, untraceable, secure, and fungible cryptocurrency using the RingCT protocol. Masari is the first CryptoNote coin to develop uncle mining and a fully client side web wallet.
You may be in quarantine, but that doesn’t mean we aren’t! For those who don’t know, every month this subreddit makes a millionaire out of one comment, and donates. With danger out and about, take some time and comment to enter! [Drawing Thread #52]
I thought this year would be a lot more normal.
Introduction: Welcome to anyone and everyone coming from /popular. To be honest, I probably should've expected this, given that most of us are staying home. For those who aren't familiar: every month, we ask for comments for entry, and we pick one who represents our winner. This process is completely random and verifiable, using the Bitcoin blockchain as a sophisticated die. Following this, people then donate to the winner using a variety of mediums, and the winner would go on to be a "millionaire" (arguably, our definition of that term is pretty loose). So once again, thank you for your support. The post lasts for 24 hours before getting locked, so make sure you place your comment before 7 PM ET. In addition, I may make a [Part 2] if we reach the limit. If that happens, I will sticky a comment on this post temporarily. Let's make a millionaire! In Case You Missed It:
REQUIRED: Leave only one (1) top level comment in reply to this thread! (Replying to other comments will not qualify. You must be thirty days old or older to comment.)
A random user who commented will be chosen, and everyone donates a dollar to make a millionaire.
February 19 at 7:00 PM ET (epoch timestamp: 1582153200 (a bit tricky taking DST into consideration, it’s been updated)) is the cutoff for accounts. If you have created your account after this point, you are not eligible to enter and your submission will be disqualified automatically.
March 22 at 12:00 PM ET (epoch timestamp: 1584892800) will begin the process of selecting the winner. At this time, the [Draw] post will be online and start the process of waiting for the blockchain, in order to select the winner randomly and verifiably.
Mini Survey: NOTE: A Google account is required to respond to hinder tampering, but you are not obligated to answer. So I’ve been thinking about this for a while: people are not having pleasant experiences with PayPal. If the account isn’t blocked, then there are issues with fees, fear of the seizure of funds, and the risk of revealing personally identifiable information. However, it is the largest platform used by /MillionaireMakers, and is the provider of most donations on this subreddit. This survey is purely to see how people feel about this. Unless if the winner chooses to not accept PayPal, we will continue to offer this service for tonight’s thread. My questions are: 1) How would you feel about a ban on the PayPal service here on /MillionaireMakers? 2) Would removing PayPal as a service affect your ability to donate? 3) Should /MillionaireMakers remove PayPal? I will periodically post results here. If you are interested in responding, please answer here, answers will not be accepted at the time the [Draw] is posted: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSffkP3SKdTi9lLPbtO8taG4_-cdctYlAf8SvohvzoJvTOYdhw/viewform?usp=sf_link Drawing Process Mini-Update: This is as short as they come, leroy627 has made a commit to the repository that adds backwards-compatibility up to Python 3.5. Procedure will be run with the following conditions: the first comment of duplicates are kept for the month of March, and any ineligible comments will be removed. If you are interested in more information, see [Drawing Thread #51]: https://reddit.com/millionairemakers/comments/f7jdxz/alright_were_getting_back_into_the_flow_happy/
Sunday at 12 PM ET (16 UTC), we will be picking our winner, and you won’t want to miss it. The post will be labeled [Draw], and one comment will be selected out of the many made here to make a winner! Remember, this is about generosity, making an impact, and uniting to make someone's life better. It takes three minutes to donate a bit to the winner, whether you're well off and want to donate a couple bucks, or going through tough times and can only donate a few coins. Every cent makes cents, and counts! If a lone $1 can get you a mask for obvious reasons, then imagine the possibilities with $1,000,000. You can get a full-body suit, new doors, and someone to love you! Admittedly, for the wrong reasons, but the option is there. A million dollars can make someone’s suffering less sufferable. Spread the word: have your friends and family comment, post the link to your friendly-neighborhood social media network, and share it to anyone interested.
Let’s make a millionaire!
Why, kind Haiku? Why? Am I to atone in home? Perhaps. I’ll get by.
Flatten the Curve. #18. The current cold war between China and America explained. And how China was behind the 2008 Wall Street financial Crash. World War 3 is coming.
China, the USA, and the Afghanistan war are linked. And in order to get here, we will start there. 9-11 happened. Most of the planet mistakenly understood terrorists had struck a blow against Freedom and Capitalism and Democracy. It was time to invade Afghanistan. Yet all of the terrorists were linked to Saudi Arabia and not Afghanistan, that didn't make sense either. Yet they invaded to find Bin Laden, an ex CIA asset against the Soviet Union and it's subjugation of Afghanistan. The land in the middle of nowhere in relation to North America and the West. It was barren. A backwater without any strategic importance or natural resources. Or was there? The survey for rare earth elements was only made possible by the 2001 U.S. invasion, with work beginning in 2004. Mirzad says the Russians had already done significant surveying work during their military occupation of the country in the 1980s. Mirzad also toes the line for U.S. corporations, arguing, “The Afghan government should not touch the mining business. We have to give enough information to potential investors.” Rare Earth Elements. The elements that make the information age possible. People could understand the First Gulf War and the Geopolitical importance of oil. That was easy, but it still didn't sound morally just to have a war for oil. It was too imperialist and so they fell in line and supported a war for Kuwaiti freedom instead, despite the obvious and public manipulation at the UN by Nayirah. This is some of her testimony to the Human Rights Council. While I was there, I saw the Iraqi soldiers come into the hospital with guns. They took the babies out of the incubators, took the incubators and left the children to die on the cold floor. It was horrifying. I could not help but think of my nephew who was born premature and might have died that day as well. After I left the hospital, some of my friends and I distributed flyers condemning the Iraqi invasion until we were warned we might be killed if the Iraqis saw us. The Iraqis have destroyed everything in Kuwait. They stripped the supermarkets of food, the pharmacies of medicine, the factories of medical supplies, ransacked their houses and tortured neighbors and friends. There was only one problem. She was the daughter of Saud Al-Sabah, the Kuwaiti ambassador to the United States. Furthermore, it was revealed that her testimony was organized as part of the Citizens for a Free Kuwait public relations campaign, which was run by the American public relations firm Hill & Knowlton for the Kuwaiti government (fun fact, Hill & Knowlton also have extensive ties with Bill Gates). So the public was aghast at her testimony and supported the war against the mainly Soviet backed, but also American supported and Soviet backed Saddam Hussein, in his war against Iran, after the Iranians refused to Ally with American interests after the Islamic Revolution. But that was oil, this was Rare Earth Elements. There was a reason the war was called, Operation Enduring Freedom. This natural resource was far more important in the long run. You couldn't have a security surveillance apparatus without it. And what was supposed to be a war on terror was in actuality a territorial occupation for resources. Sleeping Dragon China is next, and where there's smoke, there's fire. Let's go point form for clarity. • China entered the rare earth market in the mid-1980s, at a time when the US was the major producer. But China soon caught up and became the production leader for rare earths. Its heavily state-supported strategy was aimed at dominating the global rare earth industry. • 1989 Beijing’s Tiananmen Square spring. The U.S. government suspends military sales to Beijing and freezes relations. • 1997. Clinton secures the release of Wei and Tiananmen Square protester Wang Dan. Beijing deports both dissidents to the United States. (If you don't understand these two were CIA assets working in China, you need to accept that not everything will be published. America wouldn't care about two political activists, but why would care about two intelligence operatives). • March 1996. Taiwan’s First Free Presidential Vote. • May 1999. America "accidently" bombs the Belgrade Chinese Embassy. • 2002 Price competitiveness was hard for the USA to achieve due to low to non-existent Chinese environmental standards; as a result, the US finally stopped its rare earth production. • October 2000. U.S. President Bill Clinton signs the U.S.-China Relations Act. China's take over of the market share in rare earth elements starts to increase. • October 2001. Afghanistan war Enduring Freedom started to secure rare earth elements (Haven't you ever wondered how they could mobilize and invade so quickly? The military was already prepared). • 2005. China establishes a monopoly on global production by keeping mineral prices low and then panics markets by introducing export quotas to raise prices by limiting supply. • Rare Earth Elements. Prices go into the stratosphere (for example, dysprosium prices do a bitcoin, rocketing from $118/kg to $2,262/kg between 2008 and 2011). • In a September 2005. Deputy Secretary of State Robert B. Zoellick initiates a strategic dialogue with China. This was presented as dialog to acknowledge China's emergence as a Superpower (which China probably insisted on), but it was about rare earth elements market price. • October 2006. China allows North Korea to conduct its first nuclear test, China serves as a mediator to bring Pyongyang back to the negotiating table with the USA. • September 2006. American housing prices start to fall. (At some point after this, secret negotiations must have become increasingly hostile). • March 2007. China Increases Military Spending. U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney says China’s military buildup is “not consistent” with the country’s stated goal of a “peaceful rise.” • Mid-2005 and mid-2006. China bought between $100b and $250 billion of US housing debt between mid-2005 and mid-2006. This debt was bought using the same financial instruments that caused the financial collapse. • 2006. Housing prices started to fall for the first time in decades. • Mid-2006 and mid-2007. China likely added another $390b to its reserves. "At the same time, if China stopped buying -- especially now, when the private market is clogged up -- US financial markets would really seize up." Council on Foreign Relations-2007 August • February 27, 2007. Stock markets in China and the U.S. fell by the most since 2003. Investors leave the money market and flock to Government backed Treasury Bills. I've never seen it like this before,'' said Jim Galluzzo, who began trading short-maturity Treasuries 20 years ago and now trades bills at RBS Greenwich Capital in Greenwich, Connecticut.Bills right now are trading like dot-coms.'' We had clients asking to be pulled out of money market funds and wanting to get into Treasuries,'' said Henley Smith, fixed-income manager in New York at Castleton Partners, which oversees about $150 million in bonds.People are buying T-bills because you know exactly what's in it.'' • February 13, 2008. The Economic Stimulus Act of 2008 was enacted, which included a tax rebate. The total cost of this bill was projected at $152 billion for 2008. A December 2009 study found that only about one-third of the tax rebate was spent, providing only a modest amount of stimulus. • September 2008. China Becomes Largest U.S. Foreign Creditor at 600 billion dollars. • 2010. China’s market power peaked in when it reached a market share of around 97% of all rare earth mineral production. Outside of China, there were almost no other producers left. Outside of China, the US is the second largest consumer of rare earths in the world behind Japan. About 60% of US rare earth imports are used as catalysts for petroleum refining, making it the country’s major consumer of rare earths. The US military also depends on rare earths. Many of the most advanced US weapon systems, including smart bombs, unmanned drones, cruise missiles, laser targeting, radar systems and the Joint Strike Fighter programme rely on rare earths. Against this background, the US Department of Defense (DoD) stated that “reliable access to the necessary material is a bedrock requirement for DOD” • 2010. A trade dispute arose when the Chinese government reduced its export quotas by 40% in 2010, sending the rare earths prices in the markets outside China soaring. The government argued that the quotas were necessary to protect the environment. • August 2010. China Becomes World’s Second-Largest Economy. • November 2011. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton outlines a U.S. “pivot” to Asia. Clinton’s call for “increased investment—diplomatic, economic, strategic, and otherwise—in the Asia-Pacific region” is seen as a move to counter China’s growing clout. • December 2011. U.S. President Barack Obama announces the United States and eight other nations have reached an agreement on the Trans-Pacific Partnership later announces plans to deploy 2,500 marines in Australia, prompting criticism from Beijing. • November 2012. China’s New Leadership. Xi Jinping replaces Hu Jintao as president, Communist Party general secretary, and chairman of the Central Military Commission. Xi delivers a series of speeches on the “rejuvenation” of China. • June 2013. U.S. President Barack Obama hosts Chinese President Xi Jinping for a “shirt-sleeves summit” • May 19, 2014. A U.S. court indicts five Chinese hackers, allegedly with ties to China’s People’s Liberation Army, on charges of stealing trade technology from U.S. companies. • November 12, 2014. Joint Climate Announcement. Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping issue a joint statement on climate change, pledging to reduce carbon emissions. (which very conveniently allows the quotas to fall and save pride for Xi). • 2015. China drops the export quotas because in 2014, the WTO ruled against China. • May 30, 2015 U.S. Warns China Over South China Sea. (China is trying to expand it's buffer zone to build a defense for the coming war). • January 2016. The government to abolish the one-child policy, now allowing all families to have two children. • February 9, 2017. Trump Affirms One China Policy After Raising Doubts. • April 6 – 7, 2017. Trump Hosts Xi at Mar-a-Lago. Beijing and Washington to expand trade of products and services like beef, poultry, and electronic payments, though the countries do not address more contentious trade issues including aluminum, car parts, and steel. • November 2017. President Xi meets with President Trump in another high profile summit. • March 22, 2018. Trump Tariffs Target China. The White House alleges Chinese theft of U.S. technology and intellectual property. Coming on the heels of tariffs on steel and aluminum imports, the measures target goods including clothing, shoes, and electronics and restrict some Chinese investment in the United States. • July 6, 2018 U.S.-China Trade War Escalates. • September 2018. Modifications led to the exclusion of rare earths from the final list of products and they consequently were not subject to import tariffs imposed by the US government in September 2018. • October 4, 2018. Pence Speech Signals Hard-Line Approach. He condemns what he calls growing Chinese military aggression, especially in the South China Sea, criticizes increased censorship and religious persecution by the Chinese government, and accuses China of stealing American intellectual property and interfering in U.S. elections. • December 1, 2018. Canada Arrests Huawei Executive. • March 6, 2019. Huawei Sues the United States. • March 27 2019. India and the US signed an agreement to "strengthen bilateral security and civil nuclear cooperation" including the construction of six American nuclear reactors in India • May 10, 2019. Trade War Intensifies. • August 5, 2019. U.S. Labels China a Currency Manipulator. • November 27, 2019. Trump Signs Bill Supporting Hong Kong Protesters. Chinese officials condemn the move, impose sanctions on several U.S.-based organizations, and suspend U.S. warship visits to Hong Kong. • January 15, 2020. ‘Phase One’ Trade Deal Signed. But the agreement maintains most tariffs and does not mention the Chinese government’s extensive subsidies. Days before the signing, the United States dropped its designation of China as a currency manipulator. • January 31, 2020. Tensions Soar Amid Coronavirus Pandemic. • March 18, 2020. China Expels American Journalists. The Chinese government announces it will expel at least thirteen journalists from three U.S. newspapers—the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Washington Post—whose press credentials are set to expire in 2020. Beijing also demands that those outlets, as well as TIME and Voice of America, share information with the government about their operations in China. The Chinese Foreign Ministry says the moves are in response to the U.S. government’s decision earlier in the year to limit the number of Chinese journalists from five state-run media outlets in the United States to 100, down from 160, and designate those outlets as foreign missions. And here we are. You may have noticed the Rare Earth Elements and the inclusion of Environmental Standards. Yes these are key to understanding the Geopolitical reality and importance of these events. There's a reason the one child policy stopped. Troop additions. I believe our current political reality started at Tiananmen square. The protests were an American sponsored attempt at regime change after the failure to convince them to leave totalitarian communism and join a greater political framework. Do I have proof? Yes. China, as far as I'm concerned, was responsible for the 2008 economic crisis. The Rare Earth Elements were an attempt to weaken the States and strengthen themselves simultaneously. This stranglehold either forced America to trade with China, or the trade was an American Trojan horse to eventually collapse their economy and cause a revolution after Tiananmen Square failed. Does my second proposal sound far fetched? Didn't the economy just shut down in response to the epidemic? Aren't both sides blaming the other? At this POINT, the epidemic seems to be overstated doesn’t it? Don't the casualties tend to the elder demographic and those already weakened by a primary disease? Exactly the kinds who wouldn't fight in a war. Does this change some of my views on the possibility of upcoming catastrophes and reasons for certain events? No. This is Chess, and there are obvious moves in chess, hidden moves in chess, but the best moves involve peices which can be utilized in different ways if the board calls for it. Is all what it seems? No. I definitely changed a few previously held beliefs prior to today, and I would caution you in advance that you will find some previously held convictions challenged. After uncovering what I did today, I would also strongly suggest reading information cautiously. This is all merely a culmination of ending the cold war, and once I have events laid out, you will see it as well. At this moment, the end analysis is a war will start in the near future. This will be mainly for a few reasons, preemptive resource control for water and crops, population reduction can be achieved since we have too many people, not enough jobs, and upcoming resource scarcity. Did you notice my omission of rare earth elements? This is because of Afghanistan. I would wager China or Russia is somehow supporting the continued resistance through Iran. But events are now accelerating with China because the western collation has already begun to build up their mines and start production. Do you remember when Trump made a "joke" about buying Greenland? Yeah. It turns out that Greenland has one of the largest rare earth mineral deposits on the planet. Take care. Be safe. Stay aware and be prepared. This message not brought to you by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Microsoft, Google, Facebook, Elon Musk, Blackrock, Vangaurd, the Rockefeller Foundation, Rand Corporation, DARPA, Rothschilds, Agenda 21, Agenda 30, and ID 2020.
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:
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.
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.
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.
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!
Some of you might be coming to this sub, and wondering why so many people support Bitcoin Cash. This is directly answered in the pinned FAQ, and also briefly goes over the history of the sub. Now onto why Bitcoin Cash has huge potential when it comes to changing the world: Bitcoin Cash was created with the purpose of bringing economic freedom to everyone all across the globe. With the current banking, financial, and payment systems, there are many issues when it comes to the usability of money. These issues are: - Sending money across the globe without having to pay high fees (percentage fees), and waiting days or even weeks for your transfer to go through - Having payment options like Visa and Mastercard that help deal with high-volume business, but having to pay a flat fee ($0.15), and a fee of 2%-3% per purchase - Having full control over your money, so the government can't devalue your savings by printing more money for their personal interests - Being able to use your money however you like, without having to get permission from an intermediary, middleman, or financial institution - Being able to know how much money will be circulating at any given time in the future - Paying high fees (4%+) for converting currency when travelling Let's take a look at how Bitcoin Cash solves these problems: Remittance When it comes to sending money across the globe from one bank account to another, often times the fees will be very high because when your bank is sending money, it has to go through several intermediary banks that each take from the initial amount of money, making the process slow, and expensive. Currently, Western Union is advertising "free" transfers of currency across the globe. Seems like a good deal, right? Well here's the thing: they're tricking you into thinking that transfers are free when they're actually making money off of the exchange rate. We believe that money (digital cash) should be as frictionless as possible, and that a user shouldn't have to deal with transfer fees, and have to get permission to transfer their money from one bank to another. Currently, the fees on Bitcoin Cash are only $0.0007, and we plan on keeping them that low. Payment Systems When it comes to traditional payment systems, like Visa, Mastercard, and American Express, credit card companies often charge a 2%-3% fee on every transaction that takes place, and a transaction can take anywhere from 24-36 hours to confirm, and go into a merchant's bank account. These payment systems are both slow and expensive. With Bitcoin Cash, your funds are available instantly for you to spend, but if you want to take extra security measures, you can always wait ~10 minutes for a confirmation to go through. Control Over Your Own Money With the banking system as we currently know it, one of the biggest problems is the lack of control your have over your own money. Every year, people are forced to pay taxes to politicians only to have their money basically wasted on providing effectively nothing to them. Bitcoin Cash solves this problem by giving you full control over your money. Making a wallet does not require anyone to give ID, personal information, or anything that could potentially lead to the government having any say in what you can do with your hard-earned money. Another issue with traditional currencies is the inflationary nature of them. This is another form of taxation that doesn't appear to be as bad as taxing, but it's just a different way of taking money from the hands of citizens. When the government prints more money, your savings get devalued, meaning that the government has effectively stolen money without physically "stealing" it. With Bitcoin Cash, the inflation relies on a purely mathematical system in which the maximum number of Bitcoins will always be 21 million. With mathematical certainty, you can always be sure of the exact supply of Bitcoins based on the block number. I made a graph that helps illustrate this with >99.99997% accuracy on how many Bitcoin Cash will be in circulation based on the block height. This works for Bitcoin, and Bitcoin SV too. You can check the accuracy by putting the block height/number in the brackets of the second expression. Currency Conversion Have you ever travelled to another country where you had to convert to the local currency in order to be able to use it? If so, you would've realized that conversion rates can often be very high, and it is impractical to do unless you're converting a large sum of money. Our idea is to increase merchant adoption so that Bitcoin Cash can have its own economy, so it doesn't matter where in the world you are, you can always use Bitcoin Cash, and not have to worry about conversion fees. If you want to "convert" to another currency, you can always use SLP tokens that will eventually come in a variety of local fiat currencies in the near future. Tether USDT is already planning to make SLP tokens too. This is also a great alternative if you aren't sure whether you want to put your money into crypto, and want to stick with fiat instead. Think of SLP tokens as "paper" tokens on top of Bitcoin Cash that can be sent and received for fractions of a penny! How to use Bitcoin Cash for Buying Goods and Services Right now, there are many ways you can use Bitcoin Cash, including local usage, and online usage. If you want to see which merchants near you accept Bitcoin Cash, you can check using map.bitcoin.com and see which local merchants are accepting Bitcoin Cash. If you want to buy things online, you can use purse.io, and get 30% off on any Amazon purchase, so you contribute to the economy of growing Bitcoin Cash, and get a great deal for any item you want to buy! TL;DR: Bitcoin Cash is sound money which you have full control over your own money, and allows you to send any amount of money, anywhere in the world, instantly, and practically for free. If you have any additional questions, feel free to comment. Resources: Bitcoin Inflation Graph: https://www.desmos.com/calculatolaijpbrh4s Buy things on Amazon using Bitcoin Cash: https://purse.io/shop purse.io chrome extension: https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/purse-shop-with-bitcoin-b/amdginnpaflghjbbdkfenpekaeifnpee See which local merchants accept Bitcoin Cash: https://map.bitcoin.com/ Wallets with Bitcoin Cash: Electron Cash, Bitcoin.com Wallet, Exodus, Badger Wallet Bitcoin Cash website: https://bitcoincash.org
Today we will briefly open the curtain on a secret that we have kept secret for more than 2.5 years. Fascinating, isn’t it? Yes, it was a difficult burden for us to keep secret the trumps that we wanted to tell about. Getting criticized, misunderstood by investors while making a very global financial infrastructure. And we can understand all those who did not understand our strategy because due to the confidentiality of the infrastructure, which will be available soon, we had to keep secret all the advantages of the TKEY platform, all the development processes, and make various strategies to calmly finish what we started.
What is this mysterious infrastructure?
When we created the first concept of Tkeycoin — we clearly understood that a system should be developed that will provide users around the world with easy and fast work with finances. Here we are not only talking about the user segment, but we are also talking about more global segments, such as the global financial system, which can be used by millions of people and corporations around the world. At the same time, we clearly understood and understand that there are many different tools in the world, and all of them are good in their way, including SWIFT or Bitcoin, they all have their advantages and scope. But, TKEY is not about Bitcoin or SWIFT. Remember our words?
To create something more than a cryptocurrency, you need time, money, knowledge, experience, and radically different views of the world. We are here to create an infrastructure for working with Finance. Based on this system, we can provide people with investment tools, rapid exchange of assets around the world, provide our users with new revenue generation mechanisms, offer the corporate segment effective use of their assets, and the public sector — improve data exchange. That’s why we developed — TkeyNet.
TkeyNet is a new branch in the world of financial technologies
First of all, TkeyNet is an infrastructure based on which you can create various microservices, applications, financial instruments, exchanges, investment products, work with smart contracts, create your assets in various branches of TkeyNet, and much more. Second of all, TkeyNet is a set of solutions focused on payment systems and operations with instant currency exchange in an international format. TkeyNet software solutions allow you to make instant money transfers to any point in the world, as well as act as a reliable storage of amounts of various denominations. TkeyNet was conceived from the beginning of 2018 — the project was kept in the strictest secrecy and its development was carried out by a separate team of developers together with foreign programmers. In 2018, the necessary funding was received to develop the entire TkeyNet system. The development period set for us was at least 2.5–3 years. Taking into account the long development period of TkeyNet, we have drawn up an internal roadmap and decided to release the intermediate Core 1.0 Protocol with subsequent release to the exchange in 2019. The plan was as follows:
Core 1.0 release — listing on the stock exchange in 2019 to attract a new audience and create liquidity for the TKEY digital asset.
Updates from Core 1.0 to Core 2.0 for a smooth transition to TkeyNet when the TKEY digital asset is already being traded on the exchange.
The transition to TkeyNet to strengthen market position and scale the project.
In simple words, the full version of Core 2.0-would allows us to switch to TkeyNet during trading, without further stopping the entire network.
The first references to TkeyNet were presented by us in 2018 on the platform’s websites and in the first editions of the “white paper”, and the first presentation took place in the period from April 18–21, 2019 at the Asian parliamentary Assembly (APA), where TKey’s management presented the TkeyNet system during closed presentations.
In 2019, we actively tested the system and held closed meetings with representatives of large businesses. The system was known only to the management of some of the major companies and trusted persons. This helped keep all the company’s plans completely secret.
Given the current situation and the almost complete completion of work on TkeyNet, as well as the upcoming listing, we made an operational decision to quickly switch to the new system. After all, the more users in the project, the more difficult it is to implement global changes, and even more so when assets are already traded on the exchange. But this is not the most important thing — these are only indirect reasons that affected the upgrade to TkeyNet. The FINTECH market is developing at a tremendous speed, with products that are already embedded in TkeyNet and its technical characteristics — we will actively stand out in the market. TkeyNet already has built-in features that make it easy to compete with other projects, also, the following products based on TkeyNet will be available this year, which will further strengthen our position in the digital market. Yes, this is a chance that should not be missed. Why not switch to TkeyNet now? Only forward! “that’s our motto. Since last week, we have been working on active and final work to fully launch TkeyNet, so it takes time to debug all the processes. We ask all users to adhere to our recommendations and wait for a little, because it’s worth the wait, and you will see for yourself when TkeyNet is launched. After the release of TkeyNet — we will tell you in detail what it can do, how it works, but most importantly, you will see how it works. TkeyNet — will is available to all users in Mainnet\* and Testnet\*.
Mainnetis a complete product, ready to use.Testnetis an alternative blockchain (test network) that is used for testing.
After the launch of TkeyNet and integration with the exchange, there will be a long-awaited listing of Tkeycoin.
Great video on Bitcoin protocol development & philosophy
This was a discussion between MIT Digital Currency Initiative's Neha Narula and Lightning Lab's Elizabeth Stark that happened a few days ago about Bitcoin development. I think as investors/traders it's important for us to stay up to date on what is happening in the development of the tech in order to make good trading/investing decisions. Here are the most significant quotes, in my opinion (most from Neha): 3:12 - On protocol development
I think that there are four key areas to think about when you think about what's happening in Bitcoin core and what kinds of updates are being made. I've been listening along this morning its been a lot about bitcoin as an asset and digital currency as an asset class. Now we're going to talk about it as a technology, which id what it was originally and what it always will be and what the asset class depends on. I think the key thing to remember with Bitcoin is that they're always trying to improve four key areas: Better privacy, which makes it harder to censor transactions. Better performance which makes it easier to run a full node and therefore makes the network more decentralized. Better robustness, making it harder to attack in general. And then, functionality.
4:32 - On development philosophy
Another big part of the philosophy I think and something that's driving a lot of the new functionality changes is we really need to minimize what goes on chain. So this is in pretty stark contrast to a lot of smart contract platforms which execute every step of every smart contract on chain. It's like you take the program you want to run, you put the whole thing on the chain. Bitcoin's going for a slightly different approach, that approach is let's do as little on chain as possible. [Stark asks where this originated from, if Satoshi had some of these ideas] Yea, I think whoever designed Bitcoin script was definitely thinking a lot about this. It comes from the fact that, A blockchain is replicated across thousands of nodes, and hopefully one day millions if not billions of nodes, you can't execute everything that way you gotta be really careful you gotta think about what goes on chain. I think that's part of the ethos, and that's where we see things like Taproot/Schnorr.
5:37 - On what Taproot/Schnorr is 6:43 - On the speed of Bitcoin development
Bitcoin development is a little slow, but the reason is because there's nobody in charge..and people care a lot about robustness and they really care about doing good code review and making sure that this stuff is solid before it gets in.
7:30 - More on the philosophy of development
The base chain needs to be as simple as possible and needs to have the hooks necessary to support higher level functionality, that's the idea. [Stark comments on not having the complexity in the middle of the network]. We're building bitcoin to be around for centuries. The idea here is you put as little as possible into that base layer. You don't want to involve the base layer, you don't want to be constantly be re-writing the base layer. You want to have a base layer that is really, really robust. Something we've seen a lot is complexity is really the enemy of security. If you have a very complicated protocol, if you have really complicated functionality, guess what? That's a huge attack surface. The whole point of this technology is to be secure. We're removing the trusted third party, we're relying on cryptography and software and so that really needs to be secure, and sometimes I just think people do not take that seriously enough.
10:07 - More on the philosophy of development
We are building software that is supposed to run for a very long time. If there's anything that I can tell people about today, it's to tell them about this philosophy, this mindset of trying to build software that is super robust. And that's sort of the interesting thing that have been happening in Bitcoin development too, like one big change is removing code. They removed openSSL which is a library for a lot of cryptographic function and this was super celebrated because a third party library is a source of bugs, a source of consensus failure, people have different versions on their machine. So removing this was a huge win, actually. Makes the network more secure.
11:07 - On mainstream adoption and what that means 13:20 - On funding open-source development 15:21 - On the Lightning Network (goes until end) Side note: In my opinion, this is one of the reasons why Bitcoin has and will continue to succeed: there are word-class developers and scientists improving the protocol. I mean, just look at these people's fucking pedigrees:
Stark previously taught at Stanford and Yale University about the future of the internet, and was a visiting fellow at Yale’s Information Society Project...She has advised startups ranging from decentralized technology to AI and was an entrepreneur-in-residence at Stanford StartX. Stark holds a J.D. from Harvard.
Neha attended Dartmouth College and earned her B.A. in computer science and mathematics in 2003. She recieved he M.S. in computer science from MIT as well as her Ph.D. from MIT in 2015. Her doctoral thesis was titled Parallel Execution for Conflicting Transcactions. For over seven and a half years, Neha was a Senior Software Engineer at Google. In the summer of 2012, Neha was a Data Scientist at Digg. She has been a Director of Research of Digital Currency at the MIT Media Lab since 2016 and the Director of the MIT Digital Currency Initiative since 2017.
Hello community! Here is report from XMR.RU-team. The following articles/manuals were translated into Russian and posted not only on XMR.RU but also on Bitcointalk, Bits.Media, different crypto-chats, etc. If you would like to read the original article in English, then, open the article you are interested in, and at the end of each article you will find a link to the source.
--- I don't know you. Who are you? We are the biggest local Monero community from Russia, Ukraine, Belarus etc. You can support our enthusiasm in spreading information about Monero among the CIS countries! XMR: 42CxJrG1Q8HT9XiXJ1Cim4Sz18rM95UucEBeZ3x6YuLQUwTn6UWo9ozeA7jv13v8H1FvQn9dgw1Gw2VMUqdvVN1T9izzGEt If you' re using the CLI: transfer donate.xmr.ru Here you can find the viewkey from our wallet, and see how donations are spent. --- P.S. I would like to remind you that we are a non-profit community and we do not advertise on our forum, Telegram Chat / News Channel, etc. We have been asked to place ads more than once, but we always refuse.
Binance scammed me 1516 USDT with unethical verification requests! Stay Away from this Scam Exchance!
I woud like here to point how BINANCE scammed me 1516 USD with some bullshit and unethical requests. What happened? On 2019-12-20 I registered a binance account. I choosed to not verify my account as the limits of 2 BTC were more than enough for me! I deposited same day 0.21 BTC and sold it for USDT. Since I didn't use my account. On March 30 I logged in from a new computer. The system sent me an email to authorize the new device. This was done successfully. Later I tried to withdraw around 700 USD worth of BTC. The request was cancelled an the sytem asked me to verify my identiy. What???? What's the purpose of using unverified account????? So whenever I change my machine and login, I will have to submit my documents?? Meanwhile I had some discussion with live support, who tried to help. Finally, I have been told that I have no other choice than doing the full verification. I decided then to do the verification which was done finally successfully. You can see here: https://preview.redd.it/pkqhioutdfs41.png?width=493&format=png&auto=webp&s=fe4b632deb7d6d133d0894f6dfe1ac39b458b463 I spoke again with the support, they told me that I can try again, now that I'm fully verified, I can withdraw my funds. https://preview.redd.it/v0gddx81efs41.png?width=488&format=png&auto=webp&s=fbe27450f5a0a6247080be59d0c0f064c736eb55 So I tried again to withdraw some BTC, first the status for "Waiting for approval" then later it changed "Rejected" with the info "Withdraw rejected. Risk control". What??? I contacted again the support and I have been told that I will receive an email from Binance within few hours. Almost 20hrs passed, nothing from Binance. So I opened a Ticket. u/ilir_binance 2821529 # is Ticket number for reference! Ticket was opened on 03/31/2020 (12 days ago by the time of writing this post). Next day I received an answer from Binance support. And look what these people are asking me:
Dear user, Thanks for reaching out, We apologize for the delay in response due to the high volume of requests. As per checking, we found that the withdraw function was suspended due to the withdrawal risk control. We are willing to help you resume the withdrawal of your account. However, we may need some information to make progress. Security questions:
Account registration date
Account registration IP
So far this is not a problem to provide. I already provided this. Furthermore, they asked me to record a video :
A video of the first deposit you made to your Binance account. The video would contain the login process (do NOT show password) of the platform/wallet where you made this transaction to your Binance account, find the transaction and show us the full TxID, date and amount information.
Seriously?????? These were parts of my answer to them, same day:
Hello guys, Thank you for your reply, but I'm sorry to say that what you are asking is absolutely unethical, but it's okay. Your Kingdom, Your rules. I'm happy to solve this issue, take out my money out and never use again your terrible exchange. [...]
", please provide your withdrawal records and communication records with Binance CS" Where the hell should I get communication records?? I had some chat with your support when my account got locked. But where the hell should I get these communications?? Are you kidding me? You asked for my withdrawal records? Which ones??? One was rejected, the other was cancelled. So there was no withdrawal so far. So why are you asking something that does not exist?? [...]
And finally you wrote:
"A video of the first deposit you made to your Binance account. The video would contain the login process (do NOT show password) of the platform/wallet where you made this transaction to your Binance account, find the transaction and show us the full TxID, date and amount information. " My account was opened on the 20th December 2019! I made my first deposit on the same day, 0.21.. BTC. This has been now now more than 4 months!!!! How should I remember now which wallet I used by that time and what Transaction ID? Are you kidding me?????? It was not a platform, I remember I used a wallet, but I dont remember which one anymore. I checked all my current wallets and I couldn't find this transaction. It was this transaction based on my deposit history:https://www.blockchain.com/btc/tx/....
So they basically are asking me things that they know I can't provide and so would get a way to keep my money. I asked them if it will be enough to provide anything else and close this case.
I will request then to withdraw all my coins and after that I will request you to close my account. I will never use again your service. I look forward to reading you soon, as we can close this case.
What A Day: Kemporary Insanity by Sarah Lazarus & Crooked Media (07/16/20)
"I don’t have Bitcoin, and I’ll never ask you to send me any." - Joe Biden, with the most keepable promise of his campaign to date
Why Can't ICU
Multiple states are poised to run out of hospital beds and supplies, the White House has seized control of new hospitalization data, and some Republican leaders are still actively thwarting measures that keep people out of the hospital. What could go wrong?
A day after the Trump administration rerouted coronavirus-data collection from the CDC to the Department of Health and Human Services, data that was previously public temporarily disappeared. The CDC’s hospital-capacity dashboard was taken down entirely, then restored with the note, “This file will not be updated after July 14, 2020 and includes data from April 1 to July 14.” The data that the CDC can no longer update includes current inpatient and ICU-bed capacity, health-care worker staffing, and PPE-supply status.
That change comes as hospitalizations in the U.S. approach a record high. In Arizona, where 90 percent of hospital beds were occupied as of Tuesday, doctors say that scarce resources will soon require them to ration medical care. Health experts in Texas and California also say ICU capacity is a top concern, and hospitals in Texas and Florida are running out of staff. Because the country hasn’t returned to full lockdown, medical workers have no clear idea of when (or if) the current outbreaks will peak and decline.
While doctors nervously wonder if they have enough remdesivir, the White House is focused on the question that truly matters: Who doesn’t love the boss enough? The presidential-personnel office has been conducting one-on-one interviews with health officials and hundreds of other political appointees, asking for their thoughts on administration policies in an effort to ferret out anyone who isn’t sufficiently loyal to President Trump. (Better than the other way, which is when Stephen Miller eats a slip of paper with your name on it and if his eyes glow red, you’re fired.)
Outside the White House, some Republicans have read the polls and opted to rescind whatever loyalty they had left.
Gov. Larry Hogan (R-MD) published a scathing Washington Post op-ed on Trump’s early coronavirus failures, criticizing him for downplaying the virus and leaving states to solve testing challenges on their own. (And giving himself a hearty pat on the back for a test-kit shipment that ran into its own problems.) Hogan has been publicly critical of Trump’s coronavirus response before, but never quite so forcefully.
Other Republicans have gone...a different direction. As a growing number of GOP governors implement statewide mask orders to bring outbreaks under control, Gov. Brian Kemp (R-GA) not only didn’t do that, but in fact signed an executive order explicitly banning cities from enacting their own mask mandates, then sued Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms over Atlanta's. The order voids existing mask mandates in more than a dozen cities or counties, and came the same day Georgia reported its second-highest number of cases since the coronavirus arrived.
This week marks a disturbing new chapter in the pandemic, with the Trump administration further compromising the transparency of public-health data and ramping up its purge of officials seen as potential leakers. If ever there was ever a moment for congressional Democrats to loudly demand answers, this would be it.
Look No Further Than The Crooked Media
Last week the Supreme Court dropped a historic ruling on a case determining the reservation status of Eastern Oklahoma—the very case that the Crooked podcast This Land explored last year. Today, Cherokee journalist and This Land host Rebecca Nagle released a bonus episode breaking down what this Supreme Court decision means, and what’s next. You can listen to season one of This Land on Apple Podcasts or anywhere you listen to podcasts—plus the just-dropped bonus explainer episode—out now →
Under The Radar
The Supreme Court just dealt a major setback to restoring the voting rights of people with felony convictions in Florida. The Court’s conservative majority left in place a temporary federal appeals court order staying a lower-court ruling that should have cleared the way for hundreds of thousands of Floridians to vote. As a result, people in the state who have completed felony sentences but still have outstanding court fines or fees remain barred from voting. For those keeping score: The Roberts Five will intervene to block orders that make it easier to vote (see: Wisconsin, etc.) but will not intervene to block orders that make it harder to vote. There are a few levels of cruelty here. First off, this is an unconstitutional poll tax, plain and simple. Second, Florida frequently has no idea how much these voters owe: even when they can afford to pay, it’s often impossible for them to do so. And most insanely, as Justice Sonya Sotomayor noted in her dissent, voters who registered before this ruling was stayed will remain on the rolls, but won’t be notified that they’re once again ineligible, and thus could be prosecuted for trying to vote. The fight isn’t over, but it’s unclear if it will be resolved before November. If you’re in a position to give, you can help with a contribution to the Florida Rights Restoration Coalition. Also, adopt Florida.
The Trump administration may impose a travel ban on members of China’s Communist Party and their families. It’s a little easier said than done: The Chinese Communist Party has 92 million members, and the U.S. has no easy way of identifying them. The draft of the plan would also authorize the government to revoke the visas of CCP members who are already in the country. The ban would be the Trump administration’s most aggressive move against China since Trump initiated the trade war in 2018, and would almost certainly provoke retaliation against Americans looking to visit or stay in China.
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Is That Hope I Feel?
Oxford scientists found early evidence that their potential coronavirus vaccine provides “double protection”: volunteers who received the vaccine showed both antibody and T-cell responses. If all goes well in future trials, that vaccine could be available as soon as September. New polling research found that Americans are overwhelmingly in favor of bold government action on climate change, and skeptical of Republican attacks on climate action. Target and CVS are the latest major retailers to require customers to wear masks. LGBTQ political representation increased by 21 percent in the past year.
Dear Harmony community, After careful consideration we have updated the economic model of our network ahead of our upcoming open staking launch. In this new model, the total reward across the network (issuance plus transaction fees) will remain constant regardless of average block time and staking ratio. The goal of this change is to achieve a higher staking ratio, to simplify the model and to create a path to 0 issuance, all of which we believe will bring long term benefits for Harmony.
Constant annual reward of 441M ONE regardless of changes in underlying variables such as block time and staking ratio
Transaction fees offset issuance creating a path to 0 issuance as protocol gains adoption
1st year yields range: 164% (at 5% staked) to 9% (at 95% staked), 3rd year yields range: 73% (at 5% staked) - 4% (at 95% staked)
Why aim for a higher staking ratio? A higher staking ratio is beneficial for two reasons. First, the staking ratio is a barometer for the health of a PoS chain. A high staking ratio (above 60%) means that the network is highly secure since mounting a 33% attack would require at least 20% of the token supply. Just as important, a high staking percentage signals a large and loyal community that is committed to the project for the long term. If 60% or more tokens are bonded in the staking contract, you know that a majority of tokens belong to HODLers. The second benefit of a higher staking ratio is that it creates organic demand for the ONE token. In the long run adoption of on-chain applications will drive network usage and demand for ONE, but the first major use case and demand driver for the token will be staking. We believe that higher staking yields will lead to more desire to stake ONE, thus driving more demand.
Why is simplicity important? Bitcoin demonstrates the power of simplicity. The economic model is so simple you can express it in one sentence: “Issuance halving every 4 years until a maximum supply of 21 million.” The simplicity of Bitcoin’s economic model makes it easy for people to understand so that it’s easy to onboard new community members. The more understandable the model is, the easier it is to spread. Conversely the more complicated the economics are, the less likely the protocol is to reach mass adoption. For this reason, we strived to create an economic model that could also be explained in one sentence. Here’s ours: “Issuance plus transaction fees set to 441M ONE per year.” An advantage of this simple model is that it becomes easy for validators to project their future rewards and it becomes easy for token holders to project future circulating supply. This predictability gives the protocol a stable economic base for our stakeholders to rely on.
Transaction fees One of the potential problems of Bitcoin’s economic model is that it is unclear if or when transaction fees will be able to compensate for the decreasing block reward issuance. This presents a potential time bomb within the protocol. For any protocol to survive in the long term, it will need to bring in enough transaction fees to at least sustain the cost of operating and securing the network. However, it’s nearly impossible to predict when transaction fees will be adequate to sustain a network in place of issuance. Our model solves this problem by allowing transaction fees to offset issuance. Thus as network usage increases, issuance decreases by the same amount. When the network is fully mature and can sustain itself on transaction fees alone, issuance will naturally fall to zero. Rather than trying to predict the future, we structure our model so that it adjusts automatically when the timing is right. This way we get the benefit of a stable source of funding to secure the network while also maintaining the potential to have a finite supply of ONE tokens like Bitcoin.
Differences from the old model You might be wondering how this new model is different from the old one. The old model had a variable issuance. As the percentage of tokens staked increased, the annual issuance decreased from ~500M at 0% to 0 ONE at or above 80%. With the new model’s constant issuance of 441M, the reward is slightly smaller at staking ratios of less than 10% but significantly higher at higher staking ratios greater than 10%. This means that the rewards are more generous! Stakers and validators should be excited that there will be more rewards to be claimed.
Why did we change the model? We changed the model because the assumptions and judgments underlying the original model changed. As John Maynard Keynes said, “When the facts change, I change my mind. What do you do?” Initially we wanted to have as low an issuance as possible while maintaining reasonable security so that we could minimize inflation. However, we realized that the potential harm from inflation would pale in comparison to the benefits of creating a strong community of validators and stakers in the early stages of the network. Furthermore, we realized we could put a cap on long term inflation by using transaction fees as a way to offset issuance. Therefore we decided that increasing issuance was a worthwhile trade off. Another assumption in the old model was that staking was inherently competitive with use cases that rely on collateralization such as DeFi. We wanted a lower staking ratio so that a portion of token supply would remain unstaked for these applications. Since then, a new concept called “staking derivatives” shows promise to eliminate this competition as it would allow for derivatives representing staked tokens to be used as collateral instead. Finally, the original model issued a constant amount of ONE per block. However, we now realize that our block time will decrease over time as we optimize the protocol but this would in turn increase issuance in the old model. So we designed the new reward system such that reward per block will adjust with a change in the time between blocks to keep annual rate of issuance constant.
Join the discussion If you are curious to learn more about our economic model we encourage you to check out our spreadsheet and to join the discussion by replying to this post. If you are a validator or delegator and want to see what this new economic model will mean for your rewards, we are creating a staking calculator which you can use to explore your staking rewards under different circumstances.
16 Apps That Will Earn You Passive Cash Back (Best Passive Saving Apps 2020)
This is the updated 2020 Q1/Q2 version of this post. If you remember reading the previous iteration of this post, there are several changes to the list this time around. Some new additions, and some removals. Note: Most of these apps will be US only, with a minimum age requirement of 18. Having said that, let's get right into it.
Pei is an automatic cash back app. When you sign up, you'll link a debit/credit card and you'll then automatically start earning cash back as you shop at certain Pei merchants (listed just below). There are so many merchants with Pei that you'll likely find yourself accidentally earning cash back on the app, without even knowing it. Pei is an app that you can really just link a card and then check back weeks later and surprise yourself with the money you've earned. Pei deserves the top spot in this post because of how consistent it is, and just how many places you can earn cash back with it. You can cash out instantly as soon as you reach $25 in your account. If you sign up with a referral code, you'll get a $2.50 bonus once you spend at a Pei merchant. You can use the referral code found on the most common Beermoney Sites thread here.
Pros of Pei:
Cash Back at a lot of locations, and more are added frequently.
Cash out via PayPal, Bitcoin, or Prepaid Visa.
So with all of that being said, let's talk about the stores you can find on Pei. Just note that these are only stores that are local to me, so if I don't have a certain store near me that Pei offers, I won't have it on this list. Additionally, Pei actually offers so many stores at this point that there's no way for me to actually keep this list up to date at all. There have been countless times where I've shopped somewhere that doesn't even come up as an option to earn with Pei but I'll see cash back listed on the app. It's really quite impressive.
Target - 1%
Uber - 1%
Lyft - 1%
Chipotle - 1.2%
Chick-Fil-A - 1%
Panda Express - 1.5%
Petco - 1%
PetSmart - 1%
Sephora - 1%
Banana Republic - 1%
American Eagle Outfitters - 1%
Gap - 1%
Old Navy - 1%
Taco Bell - 2%
Dominos Pizza - 1.5%
CVS - 1%
Starbucks - 1%
AMC - 2%
GameStop - 1.2%
Subway - 1.5%
7-Eleven - 1%
Dunkin' Donuts - 1.5%
Walgreens - 0.5%
Nordstrom - 1%
Supercuts - 2%
ZARA - 1.2%
Express - 1%
H&M - 1.2%
Urban Outfitters - 1%
+ Local locations - ~5%
In addition to receiving cash back at many locations, Pei also has a 'loyalty bonus' where if you shop at a certain store 5x you'll earn a bonus of up to $100 (but usually way less). Pei Also just released a new feature called "Party Cash". Basically with Party Cash if you ever go shopping somewhere with your friends who also have Pei, you can start a party, and for each friend you shop with, each person will get a +1% bonus. For example, if I go shopping at Target with 2 other friends and we all start a Party Cash on Pei, we'll each get 1% (for usual cash back) plus 2% cash back from Party Cash, for a total of 3% cash back. Most stores do have a $5 daily/weekly earning limit, so do be aware that if you spend more than ~$500, you'll likely reach an earning cap.
Dosh is one fastest growing cash back apps on this list. Similar to Pei, it's a card linked program where you'll automatically earn cash back when you shop at several local and national brands. On average you'll earn 3-5% cash back when you shop at the brands featured on Dosh. As soon as you hit $25 in your balance, you can cash out to PayPal. The biggest downfall of Dosh is that the offers in the app change frequently, and the offers are targeted, meaning that not everyone will see the same offers. Below are some of the current offers for instant cash back that you might find on Dosh. Note that only instant cash back offers found on the app will earn you cash back automatically when you spend with your card.
Sam's Club - 5%
Walmart Grocery - 2%
Dunkin' - 4%
Wendy's - 3%
Uber - ?%
Papa John's 3%
Many local places - 5%
More that I'm not targeted for
Dosh also does have a generous referral program where you'll get $5 when you sign up and link a card, and so will the referrer. If you'd like to, you can enter my code, KJK6 or use my referral link (nonref) BTW, If you've heard of Dosh before, that might make sense. If you use Venmo and have the Venmo debit card, they recently introduced Venmo Rewards, which is powered by Dosh.
HOOCH has earned the number 3 spot on this list this time around because of all the programs on this list, it has remained consistent. HOOCH will automatically earn you cash back when you link a credit/debit card whenever you shop at several national brands. If you understand how Pei or Dosh above works, there's not really much more to say about HOOCH's cash back system. You'll instantly earn 1% cash back at the following national brands:
In addition to 1% cash back at the national brands, here are some other ways you'll earn with HOOCH:
Connecting your first card ($5 bonus)
Drink at a HOOCH Venue (5%)
Book a Hotel (5%)
Dine at a HOOCH Venue (5%)
HOOCH started a long while back as a subscription app where you'll buy a subscription and you'll get a free drink at a HOOCH venue every day. The venues are extremely limited, so a majority of the people reading this won't find any value in that plan. Dining is just as rare. Their referral system appears to be pretty generous. They're currently offering a $5 bonus for signing up, as well as $1 for the referrer, as well as a 20% bonus on their earnings for life.Here's my referral link, and a nonref link :) Here's the downfall of HOOCH: You can only cash out for gift cards, and the minimum is $25. For most people, this is a really big disadvantage of this app. Assuming that most people will only be earning through the 1% cash back brands, the minimum you'll need to spend in order to his the cash out minimum is $2500, which would likely take most people a really long time, since the brand options are not places where you're likely to spend a lot of money frequently...like, for example, a grocery store. But still, you could probably earn yourself a few free gift cards every once in a while for a totally passive app.
Bumped is an investing app, when you really boil it down. When you sign up you'll select one brand in each category (there are a lot of categories, you'll see below), and each time you shop at the selected brand, you'll earn the certain specified purchase back in the form of company stock. This is unique to all of the other apps on this list, because you're actually receiving company stock. Also, because of this, I think it's very important to note that in order to sign up for Bumped you'll need to enter your SSN since you will be opening up a brokerage account. As of posting, the following are the category options that you can choose from: I've bolded the brands I selected. Obviously you should pick a brand that you can find yourself using the most. Do note that if you pick a brand that you might want to change later, you'll get the opportunity to change your brands 3 times a year, at least 30 days in between.
3% at Jack in the Box
3% at McDonald's
3% at Wendy's
2% at Dunkin' Donuts
2% at Starbucks
2% at CVS
1% at Walgreens
2% at Applebees
2% at Chili's
2% at Olive Garden
2% at Red Robin
1% at Kroger Family of Stores
0.5% at The Home Depot
2% at Chipotle Mexican Grill
2% at Taco Bell
1% at Pandora
5% at Spotify
1% at Domino's
5% at Papa John's
2% at Pizza Hut
0.5% at Lyft
0.5% at Uber
1% at Target
1% at Walmart
0.5% at AT&T
0.5% at T-Mobile
0.5% at Verizon Wireless
1% at Netflix
5% at Sling TV
1% at Willamette Valley Vineyards
One thing that is listed on the app is that if you want to move your way up on the waitlist you can refer your friends to join the waitlist as well.
Bits (of stock) is very similar to Bumped. It's better in some ways, but worse in most. Similar to Bumped, there's a waitlist. Note that Bits is currently only available on iOS, but they have teased a version for Android will be coming. So, here's the issue with Bits... There's no brokerage accounts set up. If you're not sure what that means, basically in order for you to actually own and trade stocks, you'll need to do it through a brokerage account. For example, if you use Robinhood, you own a brokerage account at Robinhood. If you use TD Ameritrade, you'll have a brokerage account at TD Ameritrade. So basically the app will say that you're getting stock back as you spend, but there's no way to actually sell your stock. Basically what I'm saying is that until the brokerage account is added, you're really just receiving play money. Bits has been extremely silent about the release of the brokerage accounts... I asked them back in December and they said they were aiming to release it "next month". Three months have passed since then, so I asked last week and they again said the same thing.. the goal is a release next month (April). We'll just have to wait and see. The point here is -- assume you're not earning anything with Bits until they add the brokerage accounts. This post will be updated once the accounts are added. So, as for the actual cash back from Bits, you're able to choose 15 brands (that you can change at any time). I'll list the brands you can choose from below. What's interesting is that when the app first launched, all of the brands offered a 2% CB rate (which is unsustainably high). The rates have since come down to 0.5% for all brands. To save characters, here's a recording of me scrolling through the brands offered. If you don't want to watch that video, just know that there are a lot of brands to choose from.
Ibottais a cash back app that has been around for years, but this is its first time being added to this list. When the app originally launched, you would earn on the app by selecting cash back products that you could purchase and receive a rebate. Once you selected products you wanted to purchase, you would then scan the products after purchasing them to confirm your purchase, and then submit a photo of your receipt. That doesn't sound too passive, now, does it? Well, over the last little while, the app has come a very long way. In most cases you no longer need to select rebates you want to purchase, and in most cases you don't even need to scan a receipt, if you're shopping somewhere where you can link a rewards membership. For example, I shop at Meijer and Target primarily for groceries. Both of these stores allow me to link my accounts with the stores, so for Target any time I shop and spend using a credit card that is linked to my Target account, I'll get cash back automatically. Same thin for Meijer. As soon as I enter my mPerks phone number, I'll get cash back. What's great is that you don't even have to select offers anymore. So this is one of those cases where you might accidentally get cash back. Also, just to clarify, you're getting cash back for the products you purchase, not the place that you're shopping... which is different than most of the other apps featured on this list. Even if you don't purchase a product that qualifies for a rebate, you'll probably find yourself earning cash back almost every time you shop because Ibotta has several "Any" offers, meaning any time you buy "any" kind of a product, say.. blinker fluid, for example, you'll earn cash back for your blinker fluid purchase regardless of the brand. These offers are optimal for cash back. I personally went a whole couple months without opening Ibotta and I showed up to $50 in cash back from purchases I didn't even know I was getting cash back for. Another newer feature of the app (which isn't passive) is Ibotta Pay. Ibotta Pay is basically just a glorified way of purchasing gift cards and receiving cash back for the gift card purchase. In addition to this cash back, you'll also find several bonuses where if you redeem x offers, you'll get a certain $ boost. For example, I currently have an offer for a $10 bonus if I redeem 14 offers before the bonus expires in just a few days. I've redeemed 2 so far, so I'm not sure if I'll be getting there in time. (BTW, if you're ever cutting it close, just note that Ibotta Pay will work where each gift card purchase will qualify for a completed offer ;)) Ibotta also does have a generous referral program. They do referral offers very frequently where you can earn bonuses, but the current offer is $4 for each friend you invite. Please consider using the referral link found in the Most Common Beermoney Sites thread.
Uber Visa Local Offers
Shop or dine out, get Uber credits back.
Use your Visa card next time you dine out or go on a shopping spree at a featured store and earn Uber credits toward future rides. To join, go to settings in your Uber app and tap on Visa Local Offers.
Whenever you shop out at certain places you'll instantly receive uber credits to your account. It's really simple, and yes, this does stack with all of the other cash back apps you might be a part of. The brands they offer do change semi-frequently, so you should check them from time to time. In the past there have been 100% cash back offers for streaming services, and 10-20% cash back at Sam's Club. Considering that these offers do stack, there is some really great potential if you find any value in uber credit. If you're interested in activating the Visa local offers, you'll need to make sure you have a visa card linked to your Uber account first, and then you should see "activate local offers" in the app settings or payment settings of Uber. There's really not much to say about Visa Local Offers, but if you're looking for some FAQ/Terms, feel free to check them all out here.
For those if you who don't know what Cash App is, Cash App is an app by Square that lets you send and receive payments. They've also expanded their app to support bitcoin purchases, and they'll also let you use the app as a checking account. With the cash app you can also sign up to receive the Cash Card, which is a debit card that is funded with your cash app balance. If you have not used Cash App before, they do have a fancy referral program where when you sign up and send $50 you'll receive $5 and so will I. I do want to make this very clear: Cash App referrals can see the full name of the person who refers you, and the person who refers you will have your full name shown to them. If you're really private about personal information, be careful whose referral link you use. If you trust me, here's my referral link. Please note that if you want to use the cash app boosts that I'm talking about, you'll need to be 18 years old and have the cash card (which is free, don't worry)! Cash App announced that their cash card will be seeing 'boosts'. Boosts are their fancy way of saying that when you use our card at certain locations you'll receive a discount. Once you have the cash card, you'll notice on the app below your card you'll be able to select your boost. The following are my personal boost options, as of posting. The boosts change frequently,
$5 Off One Order on DoorDash
10% Off One Visit at Any Grocery Store
10% Off One Visit at Dollar Tree
10% Off One Visit at Walgreens
10% Off One Visit at Nike
10% Off One Visit at Walmart
$5 Off One Ride at Lyft
10% Off Each Visit at Bath & Body Works
10% Off Each Visit at Playstation Network
10% Off Each Visit at Xbox
10% off Each Visit at Chick-Fil-A
10% Off Each Visit at Taco Bell
10% Off Each Visit at Dominos
10% Off Each Visit at Portillo's.
Boosts tend to change every Friday, but several boosts will remain for a long period of time. The longest lasting boost, which just went away in the last week is the $1 off Any Coffee Shop. It stuck around for almost 2 years, and anyone who had that boost applied would automatically save $1 every time they shop at any coffee shop, without any interaction. So there are quite a few things I want to say & clear up.
You can use a boost every 1 hour.
You must select the boost that you'd like to use prior to the purchase. You're able to swap which boost you want to use as often as you'd like. So when you walk into Chick-Fil-A, just check and make sure your boost is set to CFA. If not, swap it.
In order to apply the boost, you must pay with the Cash Card. It's automatic. If your total is $6 and you're saving 10%, you'll only need a Cash app balance of $5.4 for the transaction. Cash App will cover the other $0.60.
If you link your Cash Card to Apple Pay, you can pay with it that way and the boosts will still be applied.
Do realize that just because you have the Cash Card on the app, you won't see the boosts. You need to have the physical Cash Card in your possession for the boosts to show up. I've been really enjoying using the Cash Card for purchases. Especially at CFA & Chipotle. It's really not a hassle. When I'm standing in line at Chipotle I'll open the app and make sure my cash app balance is enough and if not I'll just add funds right away. The boost is applied immediately which makes you feel good. It's like the guac is free at Chipotle after you use the cash card. The only downside to using the Cash Card is that you won't be able to stack discounts with anything else on this list... Unless you find a way to link the Cash Card to any of the things on this list. Regardless, 10% off at Chipotle is the best I have found.
Venmo recently announced Venmo Rewards. Take what you know about Cash App's boosts and then apply something similar to Venmo's debit card. Venmo Rewards is actually a bit easier than Cash App's boosts because it truly requires no input from you whatsoever. The tradeoff is that the cash back rates are lower. If Cash App's average discount would get you 10% off, Venmo would be about 4%. So here's how Venmo Rewards works:
Simply use your Venmo card at participating merchants—stores you know and love— to earn rewards. Zero setup required. See list of participating merchants in the app.
Get a Venmo card Learn More
Swipe your card at participating merchants
Automatically earn cashback straight to your Venmo balance. (Seriously. That’s it.)
As mentioned above in the section about Dosh, Venmo Rewards is powered by Dosh, and similar to Dosh, the cash back options are targeted. I personally can't use Venmo so I don't have the current list that most people will be seeing as far as opportunities go, but Venmo Rewards originally launched (in November 2019) with the following CB opportunities:
4% Sam’s Club
5% Papa John’s
Evan on DoC commented earlier this month with their updated CB opportunities: Dunkin Donuts 4%, Sephora 5%, Macy’s 4%, JCPenney 5%, Sam’s Club 4%, 1-800-flowers.com 15%, Papa Johns 5%, Forever 21 4%, Frank and Oak 5%)
4% Walmart & Walmart Grocery
4% Sam's Club
5% Papa John's
4% Forever 21
5% Frank and Oak
What I can make from this is that the options have not changed much, and have actually expanded, with a couple exceptions. If you're a Venmo user, I think this is a pretty decent reason to get the debit card. The 4% at Sam's Club and Walmart is a pretty good deal for most people, especially if there are no limits to the cash back you can earn.
I've listed this as "Empyr Apps" because all of these apps are basically just the same thing. I'll take the example of Swagbucks Local since that's what most of you reading this will already be using. If you paid attention in the Visa Local Offers section of this post, you'll find that the Empyr apps are actually very similar to those visa local offers. When you shop at a certain store/restaurant, you'll earn with the empyr app you have linked. It's actually really not that special. Here's a list of some/most of the current Empyr powered apps:
IMPORTANT NOTE: You're only allowed to use one Empyr app at a time! As soon as you link up with another Empyr app, you'll be disqualified from another until you link back up. I do want to go into this list a bit this time around since there seem to be more and more Empyr apps popping up. Swagbucks Local will always be popular among Swagbucks users. What's really nice about Swagbucks Local is that the payouts are always instantly converted to Swagbucks, which can help you cash out sooner. You'll also likely get a slot in the Swago board filled out, which might be beneficial to you. RetailMeNot is a newer one on this list and it's the only one here that I feel like I recommend you go on/off with. RetailMeNot has recently been doing a lot of "Spend $X, get $Y" deals at a lot of the stores they offer. For example, they are currently offering $5 Cash back for in Store purchases of $30+ at Staples. This is a really good deal for an Empyr app, and would probably be my pick for that transaction, but not most of the time since they don't have very many stores as options.
Alright, so Drop has gone through a lot of changes since the last time this post was updated. Drop used to be the best passive cash back app without any debate. It was also one of the first apps to offer a card link cash back program. Over the last several months (and years), their card link program has seen several devaluations. First they removed brands you could pick from to receive cash back (for example, when I first joined, you could choose to earn cash back each time you shopped at Amazon, but new users would later not see Amazon as an option). They later lowered the cash back rate. For example, Target went from 1%, to 0.2%. And finally they limited new users to pick from 5 brands to receive cash back at to just 3. In February 2020 Drop announced a change to the way their card linked cash back would work.. They since have removed their 'power offers' (the offers where you automatically earn cash back at brands), and have replaced it with card link 'Challenges'. These challenges have just recently launched, so it's hard to tell whether or not these will be passive or worthwhile altogether. I currently have one ongoing challenge where if I spend $10+ at Target with a linked card, I'll get 250 points ($0.25), which is pretty insignificant. As far as I can tell, they seem to have ditched all other forms of card linked cash back from their app. If the challenges turn out to have nothing passive about them, or have no proof of being worthwhile, Drop will likely not even be on this list the next time around. So let's talk about some features of Drop since we're on the topic. Drop has clearly moved away from passive cash back, and has focused more on becoming a cash back app in the form of portal earnings and specific offers. Several of these offers are unique to drop, which is good, but when it comes to portal cash back, the rates are often on par or slightly below the offerings you could find on Cashback Monitor. Another thing about Drop that people are (rightfully) upset about is the change that now requires you to save up $25 worth of points (25,000) in order to cash out. The minimum previously was just $5. The only feature about Drop that hasn't been nerfed to the ground is their referral program. When you refer your friends you'll earn $5 once they link a card, and they'll get $5 as well. Overall I'm not too hopeful that Drop will remain passive at all, so this might be the app's last appearance on this list for the foreseeable future.
I've refrained from listing credit cards on this post for a long time. Maybe because I thought it was too obvious, or maybe it was unnecessary, but since the number of younger people using this subreddit has been increasing I feel like I'd be doing a disservice to entirely disclude a blurb about credit cards. If you have a credit card and you don't really care to learn more about credit cards, just skip this section. If you're reading this post and you're 18+ (or if you're about to turn 18) and you don't have a credit card or don't know much about credit cards, I think it's a good idea to look into them. I'm not going to tell you exactly what a credit card is since that's an easy google search, but I will tell you about some benefits, especially about those that pertain to the benefits of this post. Credit cards are great because you can essentially spend money just like you normally would*, but you'll also earn cash back on all/almost all of the purchases you make with them. Additionally, especially if you're young, getting a credit card is a really great because it will start helping you build credit. I'm currently looking into renting a house next year with two housemates and I'm shocked to see that neither of them have any credit. They quite honestly couldn't possibly live in a house without me, since I'm the only one who has credit. *Make sure you're paying off your credit card every month (or however often you need)... Don't let yourself get into debt. I'd argue if you think you're going to get into debt with a credit card, I'd personally suggest you don't get a credit card. While you need to be 18 years old to get your own credit card, if you're under 18, you can still start gaining credit. Most major credit card companies will allow your parents to add you as an authorized signer on their credit card (which basically just means that you'll get permission to use their cards). An effect of this is that you'll start gaining credit. If you're looking to build up credit but you don't think you're ready for a credit card, I'd really recommend you ask your parents about becoming an authorized signer. It's a good conversation to have with your parents. Anyways, let's talk about the cash back benefits, since that's what this post is about, after all. There's a lot of credit cards. This post isn't going to list them all out. This isn't really even the right subreddit for credit card discussion. Nerdwallet has a great list of credit cards, so you might want to check it out here, but I'm going to share my own personal situation and recommend that for anyone who might relate, since the average age on this subreddit is around the 18-25 range. My first credit card was the Chase Freedom Unlimited card. I actually still use this credit card very frequently since it's a pretty balanced card. A couple years back on my 18th birthday I went into my local chase branch and physically had to beg for this card (it's a really beginner card, trust me). After getting denied both in bank and online, I finally found a rep who would give me a calm $500 credit limit for the card. Note: I had no credit before hand. The Chase Freedom Unlimited card offers 1.5% cash back on all purchases with the card... so when you think about it, I'd previously been spending $100 at Chipotle every month with my debit card, but with the Freedom Unlimited card, I would now be getting 1.5% cash back ($1.50) back on those purchases. It's just an easy way to save money on everything. If you use the other apps I suggest in this post, you'll likely earn cash back passively from them on certain brands that are featured, but stacking a credit card cash back on top of all the other bonuses is the absolute best way to earn passive cash back since it's usually 1-5% cash back on your purchases.
ReceiptPal is an app that allows you to upload your receipts from almost anywhere that you go shopping. It's actually a really simple process. When you sign up you'll be presented with almost little scratch cards which contains 4 spaces. Each space is filled with a receipt that you upload. Once you reach 4 receipts, you'll earn 100 points. 300/400 points = $1, so basically every 16 receipts you upload you'll receive ~$1. "So, mr Fishering, how is this passive!?" Unlike most receipt apps, ReceiptPal allows you to link your emails and amazon account and they'll automatically upload receipts for you. I actually let this app alone for several months and came back to thousands of points and cashed out instantly. If you make purchases online, you'll essentially be earning ~$0.07 for every purchase you make if you have your email linked. They'll automatically find receipts and submit them, so it's 100% passive earnings. If you also shop IRL you can submit physical receipts as well. You can cash out instantly for $5 minimum in the form of a gift card. I'd recommend saving up at least 7,500 points for a $25 gift card, since it'll value points at 300/$1.
Paribus is not your typical cash back site. Once you sign up you can link your different accounts (such as your amazon account) and it will automatically track your shopping. Paribus doesn't directly earn you cash back... it acts more like Walmart's saving catcher if you've ever heard of that. If an item you buy somewhere goes on sale shortly after or if there's any other discounts/promotions you may have missed when you originally bought something, they'll quietly get you a rebate on whatever you purchased. It can be very hit or miss. The catch is that they do take a cut of your savings. I believe it is 30% for all new users, but for each member you refer you can cut the cut by 5%. If you save $10, they'll charge you $3 to whatever card you have linked. Personally I've found it to be really hit or miss, but I've found some incredible savings. I bought a gopro and I got $15 saved with Paribus, and I also got $50 back from some really nice headphones I picked up on amazon from Amazon. What's weird is I bought the headphones like 6 months prior to the rebate. Was shocking to see it, but I've really had some good luck with Paribus.
After the last post, I noticed a lot of people enjoyed Paribus, so I figured it'd be good to add some alternatives in this post. So, here's Sift. Sift is a similar site to Paribus, and its key focus is on enforcing credit card benefits that many people don't know about. It's actually pretty nice. It'll let you pick your credit card and it'll tell you pretty much everything about your card. I have the Chase Freedom Unlimited card, and I was actually shocked to hear some of the benefits my card has that I have never been taking advantage of. From Sift's site:
We automatically comb through your credit card policies to show you all your benefits in one place. For every purchase we let you know what benefits you are eligible for. We streamline the claim process to make it as simple as possible to get your money back.
You can link your emails as well as your amazon account as well and they'll make it really easy for you. I have not actually used Sift much myself, so I cannot attest to how well it works, but the app store reviews are generally positive for Sift.
Trim is similar to Paribus and Sift, but there's a certain void that it's trying to fill that the other two don't really seem to be filling. Trim's main selling point is its bill negotiations. Instead of trying to save you money when a price drops, they're going to try and just nip it right in the bud and try to get your bills lower. Right now they're mainly trying to negotiate with cell providers, internet providers, and cable providers. Here's how the process goes:
Submit Your Bill: Submit your most recent cell phone, cable or internet bill to get started.
Trim Negotiates: Trim negotiates with your provider to get you discounts on your bill.
You Save Money: Trim takes 25% of annualized savings, but only on success—otherwise, it's free!
So, similar to Paribus, Trim does charge a fee. In a sense, I guess that's a good thing because it gives them an incentive to make sure to get some sort of bill decrease for you so they'll make some money too. Their rate is currently 25% of your bill negotiation. Of course, if they're not able to negotiate your bill for you, you won't pay them anything. Trim does also monitor your bank account for you and they'll notify you of account changes (that you can set). For example, if they see a transaction worth $xxx, they'll notify me that I've made a large transaction. If there weren't already so many other sites/apps that could do that, I'd say that's a great feature that Trim offers.
Hopefully there's some new apps/sites you found out about in this post. If you sign up for some/all of these programs listed, you should probably find yourself earning some pretty decent cash back, depending on where/how much you spend. These apps are very satisfying to watch your balances build up on, and after a while it's very rewarding to cash out and treat yourself. In this update I added some really great additions like Ibotta, Venmo Rewards, and Bits, but I am very sad to see the turn that Drop has taken. I have been tipped off to some upcoming passive cash back opportunities that will be coming very soon, and I can't wait to share those and hopefully add them to this list in the near future. As always if you have any questions please do leave a comment or send me a PM! Thanks for reading!
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