Take Two: Ethereum Is Getting Ready for the Constantinople Hard Fork Redo

Take Two: Ethereum Is Getting Ready for the Constantinople Hard Fork Redo

The world’s second largest blockchain by market capitalization is gearing up for a hard fork its tried to activate before called Constantinople. This time, developers are confident it will work.

Barclays, Ripple Back $1.7 Million Round for Remittance Firm Using XRP

Barclays’ accelerator program, Ripple and others have backed a $1.7 million round for a new remittance startup that will use XRP.

Core Developer’s 300kb Block Proposal Bolstered in Bid to Push Lightning Adoption

Bitcoin Core (BTC) developer Luke Dash Jr has once again sparked controversy with his idea to shrink the BTC chain’s block size down to 300kb. It’s not the first time the concept was proposed by the developer, but this time around there’s more support for the idea in order to drive Lightning Network adoption.

Also read: Indian Supreme Court Moves Crypto Hearing, Community Calls for Positive Regulations

Luke Dash Jr Proposes Temporary 300kb Block Soft Fork

Back in January 2017, cryptocurrency developer Luke Dash Jr proposed a Bitcoin Improvement Proposal (BIP) requesting the block size to be decreased down to 300kb per block. The proposal was submitted months before network fees skyrocketed to $30-50 per transaction, but at the time the mempool (transaction queue) had already started to fill up. Back then the BIP was brushed off pretty quickly, since the scaling debate was starting to peak and people were already upset about the rising fee market.

Fast forward to today and Dash Jr is again proposing to shrink the block size down to less than one third of the 1mb limit. “This patch would enforce a very simple soft fork, reducing Bitcoin block sizes to ~300kb between Aug 1 and Dec 31 — It demonstrates how one can make a truly temporary soft fork,” the developer explained to on Twitter. “Do not run this in production even if you support UASF.”

Core Developer's 300kb Block Proposal Bolstered in Bid to Push Lightning Adoption

‘Increase Fees and Move Transactions to Lightning’

Three days later Bitrefill’s John Carvalho told his followers Dash Jr’s plan was something he could get behind. “I agree with Luke Dash Jr that the block size should be smaller. I feel more confident to say it now that we have Lightning Network making strides — I’ll run the soft fork,” Carvalho explained. When he was asked what financial incentives smaller blocks offered, Carvalho replied by bolstering higher network fees.

“I could imagine a few,” Carvalho stated. “To increase fees (doesn’t even have to be malicious, could be for survival). To move transactions to Lightning Network (maybe miners realize they can make easier money by increasing fees on L2, under the right conditions). To reduce costs (new network/web conditions).”

Core Developer's 300kb Block Proposal Bolstered in Bid to Push Lightning Adoption

In response to Carvalho’s tweet, the cryptocurrency entrepreneur Vinny Lingham replied to the discussion by saying that he totally agrees with Dash Jr’s plan and has been saying it for a while. “1mb is an arbitrary number and if Bitcoin is going to rely on L2 to scale, then it makes no sense to keep it at 1mb. — Reducing it to 350k as per the research from Luke Dash Jr is practical and can help move transactions to layer 2,” Lingham emphasized. A slew of people on Twitter believed that Lingham’s statement was said in jest, however, and was basically poking fun at the idea. Core Developer's 300kb Block Proposal Bolstered in Bid to Push Lightning Adoption

‘Stop the Madness’

However, not everyone agreed with Dash Jr’s concept and Carvalho’s statements about higher fees to push more Lightning Network adoption. One observer on Twitter commented: “Smaller blocks simply means less transactions on the chain, purposefully hard-coding a lower limit — It doesn’t make any logical sense.” However, Carvalho, Dash Jr, and Bitcoin Core developer Jorge Timón simply dismissed the individual’s statements after he said Lightning Network was “centralized, bloated, and overcomplicated”.

Core Developer's 300kb Block Proposal Bolstered in Bid to Push Lightning Adoption

Whatever the case may be, this time around Dash Jr’s concept to decrease the block size to 300kb has been more fruitful, especially for those pushing for adoption of the Lightning Network. However, Cobra the anonymous owner of Bitcoin.org, wants this discussion to end and has asked the community to “stop the madness.”

“A soft fork to ‘reduce the block size’ is a hard fork in all but name and this will split off from the established consensus, cause massive drama, and damage trust in Bitcoin,” Cobra stated. Once again it seems certain cryptocurrency proponents are all about high onchain fees due to their distrust for miners and the hope that the Lightning Network will work as well as Nakamoto consensus.

What do you think about Luke Dash Jr’s idea to temporarily soft fork bitcoin to decrease the block size to 300kb? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.


Image credits: Shutterstock, and Twitter. 


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The post Core Developer’s 300kb Block Proposal Bolstered in Bid to Push Lightning Adoption appeared first on Bitcoin News.

In the Daily: New FSB Chair Fears Crypto, Wikileaks Goes After CSW, Bakkt Update

In the Daily: New FSB Chair Fears Crypto, Wikileaks Goes After CSW, Bakkt Update

In this edition of The Daily we cover recent remarks from the new Chair of the Financial Stability Board (FSB), a spat between Wikileaks and Craig S. Wright (CSW), and the latest update about the upcoming institutional crypto platform Bakkt.

Also Read: In the Daily: BCH Charity Anniversary, Lighting Wholesaler Takes Crypto, Atomicpay Vanity URLs

New FSB Chair Fears Crypto

Randal Quarles is an equity investor and former U.S. Under Secretary of the Treasury for Domestic Finance who now serves as vice chair for supervision of the Federal Reserve Board of Governors. At his inaugural speech as Chair of the Financial Stability Board (FSB) at a Bank for International Settlements (BIS) meeting in Hong Kong he remarked on the challenges cryptocurrencies offer for the Switzerland-based intergovernmental body.

Quarles said that “the FSB has decided to undertake a review of its framework for assessing vulnerabilities to ensure that we are at the cutting edge of financial stability vulnerability assessment … This should be a framework that starts from first principles and benefits from substantial dialogue with non-banks as well as banks, regulators, and other relevant official bodies … I trust that the framework will harness the strength of the broad and diverse membership of the FSB, that it will be forward looking, and that it will be flexible enough to handle a financial system that will continue to evolve over time. This will not be easy — developments like the emergence of crypto-assets may challenge any framework — but that makes the goal of a robust framework all the more important.”

In the Daily: New FSB Chair Fears Crypto, Wikileaks Goes After CSW, Bakkt Update
Federal Reserve Board Building, Washington, DC

The FSB is an international body that monitors and assesses vulnerabilities affecting the global financial system and includes all G20 economies. Back in October 2018, a report by the organization titled “Crypto-asset markets: Potential channels for future financial stability implications” determined that “based on the available information, crypto-assets do not pose a material risk to global financial stability at this time.”

Wikileaks Goes After CSW

Wikileaks, the non-profit for publishing classified information founded by Julian Assange, has set its sights on BSV’s Craig Wright. The organization tweeted: “Serial fabricator who claims to be inventor of Bitcoin, Craig S. Wright, now claims that Bitcoin was always pro-state and that he always worked for the prosecution, as he tries to raise money for business project and escape court action.”

This was in direct response to a recent Medium post by CSW where he wrote: “Bitcoin was never designed to help an anonymous money-transfer system, and I was always opposed to those seeking to operate outside the law.” He also added that “I do not like Wikileaks, and I have never been a fan of Assange’s methods. More importantly, I am strongly opposed to criminal markets and bucket shops. Ross Ulbricht and others like him are criminals. They are not freedom fighters, they are not libertarians. They simply are predators, and they are all that Bitcoin was designed to make far more difficult.”

In the Daily: New FSB Chair Fears Crypto, Wikileaks Goes After CSW, Bakkt Update

Wikileaks started accepting bitcoin in June 2011 after it suffered its first financial blockade when Paypal, Mastercard, Visa, and Bank of America stopped enabling people to donate to the organization. Last year, Wikileaks announced that Coinbase had blocked its official Wikileaks shop without notice and called for a global blockade of the cryptocurrency exchange.

Bakkt Exchange Update

A recent earnings call by Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) has revealed new details about its awaited cryptocurrency futures trading subsidiary, Bakkt. According to ICE’s exceptions, the investment in Bakkt will generate $20 million to $25 million of expenses based upon the run rate in the first quarter.

ICE CEO Jeff Sprecher explained to analysts in the call that “Bakkt is a unique structure for us and we’ve actually set it up as a separate company with a separate name, its own management team and separate capitalization. So right now ICE is the majority investor in the company, I expect that we’ll do other rounds of financing.”

In the Daily: New FSB Chair Fears Crypto, Wikileaks Goes After CSW, Bakkt Update

Sprecher also added: “We have very, very large retail franchises [with] global connectivity to end users that we hope will be brought into that ecosystem and could create a very, very valuable company out of that initiative if our business plan plays out … So it’s a bit of a moonshot bet and it’s been organized in a manner that is very different than the way ICE typically does businesses …They’re well along in building out an infrastructure that I think you’ll see launch later this year.”

What do you think about today’s news tidbits? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.


Images courtesy of Shutterstock.


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The post In the Daily: New FSB Chair Fears Crypto, Wikileaks Goes After CSW, Bakkt Update appeared first on Bitcoin News.

What Bitcoin Did #73 How ABRA Is Building a Global Bank with Bill Barhydt

‘œAbra uses Bitcoin tech to basically build the foundations for what really will be a global bank.’ ‘” Bill Barhydt

Interview location: Skype

Interview date: Friday 8th Feb, 2019

Company: ABRA

Role: CEO

The dot-com bubble burst when companies were unable to deliver on the expected promise of a boom in e-commerce. Companies raised too much money and were unable to drive the sales volume which supported their ambitious infrastructure and share price.

Out of the ashes, new, unexpected business models around search and social rose up, creating some of the most valuable companies in the world.

The crypto bubble burst in 2018, with speculation unable to maintain the rapid growth in the value of cryptocurrencies. Use cases for payments were limited, and companies were unable to ship projects which attracted significant users.

Out of this bubble, we are starting to see new companies and business models which are attracting customers and creating value. One of these companies is ABRA, which is using the unique features of Bitcoin to create a global trading platform for currencies, stocks and ETFs.

In this interview, I talk with ABRA CEO, Bill Barhydt. We discuss ABRA’s recent announcement of their new stock and ETF trading product, the complexity of building a global bank and why ABRA is built on Bitcoin.

This episode is also on:

Listen to more What Bitcoin Did episodes

How the Dow Just Set the U.S. Stock Market up for Another Massive Fall

The U.S. stock market rally could be in for a rude awakening Tuesday after a source at the White House confirmed that President Trump was undecided about backing a new budget deal proposed by congressional leaders. The Dow surged by as much as 317 points earlier in the session on reports that a new deal was imminent. DOW RALLY PREMATURE? All of Wall Street’s major indexes reported big gains after the open. The Dow Jones Industrial Average surged 287 points, or 1.2%, to 25,340.29. The gains reflected a strong pre-market session for Dow futures as investors pounced on news that

The post How the Dow Just Set the U.S. Stock Market up for Another Massive Fall appeared first on CCN

Newsflash: Why This Virginia Police Department’s Pension Just Invested in a $40 Million Crypto Fund

Frequent Bitcoin commentator and t-shirt salesman Anthony Pompliano told Bloomberg this morning that two Fairfax County, Virginia pension funds have gone in on Morgan Creek Digital’s new fund for cryptocurrency companies. The funds represent $1.2 billion in assets for the pensions of police and other public workers in the county. $25 Million Fund Oversubscribed to $40 Million The $40 million fund originally only sought $25 million. A small portion of its investment will be in liquid blue chip cryptos like Bitcoin and Ethereum. Investment in cryptocurrency companies will be the majority of the fund’s work, however. Coinbase and Bakkt have

The post Newsflash: Why This Virginia Police Department’s Pension Just Invested in a $40 Million Crypto Fund appeared first on CCN

Institutional Investors are Already Turning to Crypto: Should You Fear Missing Out?

Two public pensions from Fairfax County, Virginia’s Police Officer’s Retirement System and Employees’ Retirement System, have invested in Morgan Creek’s new $40 million crypto fund. Anthony Pompliano, a Morgan Creek general partner, said that it is the first case in which public pensions have invested in the cryptocurrency market. Apart from the two pensions, the fund is said to be financed by a university endowment, a hospital, an insurance company, and a private foundation. It raised a total of $40 million. Fairfax County Police Officer’s Retirement System chief investment officer Katherine Molnar said: “Blockchain technology is being applied in unique

The post Institutional Investors are Already Turning to Crypto: Should You Fear Missing Out? appeared first on CCN

Oracle’s First Dozen Cloud Blockchain Applications Are Now Live

The software giant now has up to a dozen enterprise customers using live blockchain applications.

Binance’s Decentralized Exchange Is About to Launch for Public Testing

In less than two weeks, Binance will release its decentralized exchange, Binance DEX, on a public testnet.


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