Zen Protocol’s Mission for Decentralized Finance

Zen Thumb New

In Eastern traditions, Zen is often defined as a total state of focus, a merging together of body and mind. It involves dropping illusions and seeing things as they are in the present moment.

Based in Tel Aviv, Zen Protocol recognizes that starting in the “here and now” is vital to innovation and progress. Its mission? To create a platform that allows anyone in the world find and use financial products in a highly secure manner.

Zen Protocol’s eclectic team of developers and crypto veterans aims to assist Bitcoin in sustaining its dominance while allowing it to capitalize on advancements that boost adoption. In pursuing this quest, the company has made liberal use of beta testers — a move that runs counter to the prevailing approach in much of the world of blockchain technology, where projects all too often hastily toss up a website and white paper before demonstrating a viable product.

At Zen, 2017 has been about erecting a new blockchain to fuel a marketplace that allows bitcoin holders to issue, trade and invest in stock options, futures, digital currencies, exchange-traded funds, exotic derivatives, contracts for difference and other financial instruments.

This project is predicated on the Zen blockchain functioning in parallel with Bitcoin in what is typically known as a “sidechain.” This opens up a bevy of opportunities for Zen to curate its platform, independent of any changes to the Bitcoin protocol while simultaneously being able to integrate its own set of modifications to fuel its innovative process.

The primary value proposition of the platform involves the facilitation of complex financial agreements through the use of smart contracts. This can be seen as a major breakthrough given that Bitcoin doesn’t natively support smart contracts — a major reason why the majority of blockchain app projects are launching on Ethereum instead.

Through the creation of this sidechain-style model, Zen is able to pay Bitcoin miners for executing contracts without creating a competitive scenario with Bitcoin for computational resources. Zen, therefore, sees itself as a complementary solution for Bitcoin which helps it scale and offload some of the transactional demand from the Bitcoin chain, which often struggles with high transaction costs and sluggish transactions.

A Viable Alternative to Ethereum? 

Through the strategic execution of its ambitious roadmap, Zen aims to usher in a new era for smart contracts using the Bitcoin blockchain — a space where Ethereum has, to date, shown a dominant presence.

On Ethereum, all smart contracts, in order to execute, need to use what is known as “gas.” When this vital resource is depleted, contracts may stop before they finish executing — a frequent source of frustration for both users and developers.

Zen’s smart contracts, on the other hand, always execute without stoppage, never utilizing more resources than required, thereby eliminating the need for gas entirely. Further, Zen lets miners check the computational resources needed for a contract before running it, allowing for more rapid contract execution than on Ethereum.

The Zen team is also making headway in how smart contracts engage with the real world. One major sticking point with the current iteration of smart contracts is that they exist in a walled garden on the blockchain. This prevents them from capturing external data on their own. External data feeds, known as “oracles,” are key to assessing the outcome of real-world events and to resolving any disagreements that may surface. 

By way of example, say a person wants to pay for auto insurance for a long-distance trip from Point A to Point B. A smart contract can set up for that date, with the projected mileage and other key information. Then one or more oracles could be set up to facilitate the exchange of information to the smart contracts with any payout predicated on any agreed upon conditions (such as a qualifying accident) being met. Zen’s oracles can run at a profit, without taking up too much space on the blockchain.

Token Sale and Next Steps

As a critical next step in its progression, Zen Protocol recently announced that its highly anticipated token sale will commence on November 30, 2017. This token is required to switch on smart contracts in the system, but participants can make transactions and use contracts with their bitcoins or other assets, without using any additional tokens. One advantage of Zen’s contract system is that the assets which contracts make don’t need the “native” Zen token to spend or send to other participants.

“At the end of the day, we believe that people have a right to own their financial assets, and we feel a responsibility to provide people with the necessary tools to empower themselves,” said Adam Perlow, CEO of Zen Protocol.

Zen_01 (1).png

Zen 02 New

Zen_03 (2).png

Zen_04 (1).png

Zen_05 (2).png

Zen_06 (1).png

The post Zen Protocol’s Mission for Decentralized Finance appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.

Continue reading…

 

Rublix Is Reimagining Crypto Trading

RBLX thumb


The soaring fortunes of bitcoin and cryptocurrencies is attracting massive amounts of media attention worldwide. This has led to a steady stream of traders flocking to the space amid record prices and subsequent asset returns.

In some circles, this exuberance has to raise concerns about a bubble akin to the great global recession of 2008. On a weekly basis, a seemingly endless stream of new crypto projects, many predicated on little more than a hastily developed white paper and website, are being launched and creating a crowded array of options for would-be traders.

Enter Rublix, a Canadian blockchain and smart contract technology startup that aims to eliminate many of the common concerns and uncertainties arising in the prevailing world of decentralized markets or speculative asset classes. Charting a course of transparency, while nurturing a world-class ecosystem of problem solvers and supporters, Rublix endeavors to create a new normal for trading performance among cryptocurrencies or any asset class. Bolstered by highly astute technology and investment experts, Rublix is actively unveiling a suite of products tied to an ambitious roadmap with a series of launch dates.

The Rublix platforms are being developed in collaboration with some of the top designers and coders in the world and the team is seeking to attract professionals in the finance space who desire to actively participate in the world of decentralized markets. Its target market? Traders of any sophistication level in any industry including people who believe that cryptocurrencies and the blockchain have barely scratched the surface in terms of its growth potential.

Hedge

Rublix’s flagship product is called Hedge, a platform which assists those who are interested in, yet unacquainted with, trading in making thoughtful, informed and educated decisions. Users will have the ability to track and mimic trades made by sophisticated investors on the platform with a verified ranking. The more accurate a trader, the higher their corresponding rank. The platform features an advanced block explorer that displays and records real-time trading predictions on the Rublix chain. The result is that novice traders will be able to rapidly assess and learn from more experienced counterparts with proven track records.

“The problem with many trading platforms that allow entry level traders to follow ‘successful traders’ is that they employ a month-by-month portfolio model,” said Rublix co-founder and CEO David Waslen. “Unfortunately, portfolio growth is only one piece of the puzzle when analyzing performance. A twenty percent increase in one’s portfolio is not an accurate measure as to whether a trader is highly skilled or not. Perhaps they got lucky with one trade while the balance of their portfolio is mediocre or poor.”

The goal of Rublix, Waslen added, is to change this dynamic.

“Rublix, therefore, aims to expose each trading prediction both before and after the event to increase transparency and accountability,” he said. “By making each blueprint public information with blockchain immutability, we give users a secure tool that will aid in making calculated decisions on which information to trust the we hope will help them enter the cryptocurrency space and successfully trade.”

Cryptocurrencies, with prevailing volatility in a marketplace that never closes, provide an abundance of opportunities for any trader. What is needed is a trusted source of advice to help professional and novice traders develop their knowledge base and hone their skills. That is why through integration with three inherent components of blockchain technology – transparency, decentralization, and immutability – Rublix’s Hedge platform debunks market manipulation while providing a trusted source of trader information.

“The blockchain aids in keeping our data secure and unsusceptible to intrusion or manipulation,” Waslen said. “It’s obviously a foundational element in helping us create a reliable, unbiased data source that will allow users to make calculated decisions on how to trade appropriately. A decentralized database of users’ past trade history paired with smart contract verification will give us a significant competitive advantage over other trading networks.”

Waslen goes on to note that the platform rewards users with the company’s native RBLX token on an exponential scale based on how many times they are “accurate” in their predictions. Hedge is targeted for release in Q1 2018.

TradersEdge

Rublix’s next product for helping new traders enter the cryptocurrency market is called TradersEdge. Set to launch in Q3 of 2018, it will feature a suite of tools that offer a similar feel and aesthetic to that of many well-known modern trading platforms. This attention to user experience is seen as a vital cog to building long-term interest and user adoption in the crypto-sphere as many cryptocurrency exchange platforms lack a user friendly interface.

Centurio

Finally, Rublix is building a tool called Centurio which will assist newcomers in getting up to speed with how to use cryptocurrencies for daily transactions and savings. This cross-platform solution, which doubles as a wallet and contract organizer, is targeted for release in early 2018.

Unfriendly platforms, difficulties in finding trusted information and general hesitation are what limit the growth and proliferation of cryptocurrencies. Recognizing this, Rublix is laser focused on bringing a whole new cast of entrants into the marketplace by mitigating a number of common concerns that hinder adoption. Rublix’s goal is to create an environment where embracing the blockchain and owning cryptocurrencies feels second nature.


The post Rublix Is Reimagining Crypto Trading appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.

Continue reading…

 

Zen Protocol Advances Smart Contracts for Financial Services

Zen Thumb

Shunryū Suzuki, the Sōtō Zen monk and teacher who helped popularize Zen Buddhism in the United States, once remarked that, “In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, but in the expert’s there are few.”

In many ways, this aphorism captures the entrepreneurial tenor of today’s emerging world of blockchain technology, as startup companies seek to address critical issues facing the distributed ledger space.  

Many would agree that today’s financial systems are fraught with centralization, complexity and barriers to access. While established businesses and individuals in this market can manage the paperwork and bureaucracy, many still find these barriers to participation too challenging to overcome.  

As a result, potential trades and deals are lost, as these financial participants, trying to get limited access to the system, turn to intermediaries. These participants are, therefore, unable to issue assets or even to trade in some asset classes.  

Zen Protocol, a smart contract company headquartered in Tel Aviv, is on a quest to change this trajectory, by making secure, peer-to-peer finance possible on a customized, public blockchain, removing the need for intermediaries such as banks and brokers.  

Zen’s approach allows anyone, anytime, anywhere to create and trade financial products on a secure platform — a Proof-of-Work blockchain protocol. It’s here where an open marketplace for options, futures, digital currencies and a myriad of other financial instruments are offered to consumers who would otherwise be left without the ability to participate. 

Zen Protocol, in many respects, can be viewed as an alternative to Ethereum, Bitcoin’s main market competitor. Zen’s main value proposition is the creation of a blockchain that mitigates some of the pesky issues that have adversely impacted Ethereum, while simultaneously running parallel to the Bitcoin blockchain. 

By way of example, one problem users on the Ethereum blockchain face is running out of “gas.” This means that transactions on its network often fizzle out, requiring that whatever currency paid to a user be returned to them. In other words, because there wasn’t enough energy to complete their transaction, it was canceled. Unfortunately, the fee for running this transaction still has to be paid.

Zen addresses this issue through proven resource bounds: a protocol for attaching to each contract a proof of how long it takes to run. This completely removes the need to monitor gas.

Key here is that smart contracts won’t allow a transaction to be sent without knowing how much computation it uses. This one feature alone makes Zen a noteworthy alternative to Ethereum and other smart contract platforms.  

With Zen miners now able to check how much computation transactions take to verify, they no longer have to run them in a virtual machine. Unlike competing platforms, Zen simply compiles its smart contracts to machine code, enabling them to run at native speed and greatly increasing transaction throughput.

Zen has implemented a system called “Multi Hash Mining” which distributes mining rewards to several hashing algorithms while giving users — that is, holders of the Zen native token — the power to vote on which hashing algorithms will receive the rewards. The company believes that this approach will result in a fairer and more equal engagement between miners and token holders, with all participants incentivized to cooperate.  

It should also be noted that, rather than being limited to the native Zen token, any asset in Zen can be used to pay transaction fees, including those created by contracts. This reduces complexity for consumers seeking to move around and pay fees in fiat currency. With Zen, all new assets can be utilized by any existing or future contract. 

Zen Protocol’s Push Forward 

The core team at Zen protocol started working together in 2014 in the blockchain space and, after years of research, began development of the Zen Protocol in June 2016. 

“Our driving motivation in creating Zen is the belief that people have a right to own their financial assets, and we feel a responsibility to provide people with the necessary tools to empower themselves,” said CEO Adam Perlow. 

Perlow noted that rather than be exposed to counterparty risk, most individuals use financial institutions as trusted intermediaries. He says that these financial institutions facilitate the majority of economic transactions.  

The model employed by Zen Protocol overcomes the ability of financial institutions to limit people’s freedom to transact, providing an alternative way of accessing financial products and controlling risk.   

Perlow believes that Zen Protocol’s approach follows from some simple premises. 

“These premises are the need for increased security — provided by formal verification and a secure execution context, the need for real utility — provided, for example, by oracles, and the need for better governance [by multi hash mining],” he said. “In the long term, we think Zen provides people with a ‘Swiss bank’ in their pocket, allowing them to make use of cryptographic advancements to create, trade and store conventional financial assets such as stocks, bonds and derivatives over a decentralized network.” 

Zen 01

Zen 02

Zen 03Zen 03

Zen 04

Zen 05

The post Zen Protocol Advances Smart Contracts for Financial Services appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.

Continue reading…

 

MadHive’s Mission to Restore Transparency and Fairness to Advertising

MAD


Digital technology should make the advertising business more efficient. But it has not — at least not from the perspective of companies that place ads or the content publishers who sell ad space to them. Laden with middlemen and clouded by convoluted, proprietary ad placement platforms, the modern digital advertising industry faces serious challenges.


New York–based MadHive is on a mission to solve them. Using blockchain technology and smart contracts, MadHive is constructing an ad tech platform, called the MAD Network, that reduces the power of the  middlemen in ad tech and brings buyers and sellers closer together.


At the same time, the MAD Network is designed to restore transparency to the ad tech industry. By recording information on the blockchain, encrypting it and making it available to advertisers with the requisite permissions, the MAD Network prevents fraud and ensures that advertisers can trace exactly how their money is being spent. Publishers can also sell data over the blockchain to help advertisers understand consumer behavior and plan ad campaigns more effectively.

The Problems With Advertising Today

Software tools can automate most of the work required to match an advertiser looking to place an ad with a publisher who has ad space to sell. However, the platforms that currently connect advertisers to publishers operate as “walled gardens,” in which only the platform owners — as opposed to advertisers and publishers — can understand how dollars are spent and information is exchanged.

This isn’t a problem that affects only small-time advertisers and publishers. It impacts organizations as large as The Guardian, a major British newspaper that is suing an ad tech company over allegations that the company’s proprietary ad placement service imposed “secret commissions” on the publisher and obscured information that would have helped the newspaper secure a fairer share of profits from advertisers.

Put simply, advertising dollars “disappear” as they flow down the supply chain from advertisers to publishers. Middlemen soak up a majority of the revenue.

How Mad Network Fixes Ad Tech

A better approach to ad tech is possible. MadHive is leading the way by building the MAD Network, a blockchain-based ad tech solution. The MAD Network is a complete ad tech platform that consists of several components, each of which solves an important challenge for advertisers, publishers or both.

MADnet Books

MADnet Books is a blockchain-based payment system. MADnet Books does more than simply enable transactions, however. Because it is built on the blockchain, it facilitates decentralized, transparent revenue streams. Ad tech dollars can’t disappear when they are recorded on the blockchain — nor can advertisers and publishers be misled about the way money is being spent. The transparency that MADnet Books provides is just as important as the core payment functionality.

MADnet Books is powered by MADtoken, the protocol’s native token. The token economy is an important tool in the MADNetwork, which aims to flip the market dynamics for the middle layer. By doing so, MADNetwork will make it more profitable to be in business and serve the interest of buyers and sellers, which is not always the case in today’s supply chain. For the buyer this results in greater reach for the cost, while publishers actually lower the margin compression that currently plagues the digital advertising ecosystem.

MADnet Data

A significant amount of value within the ad tech industry lies in the data that digital ad platforms create. Traditionally, this data has remained in the hands of the middlemen who control the platforms. They don’t typically share it with advertisers; instead, they may sell it to advertisers’ competitors to generate additional revenue.

On the MAD Network, however, data will be shared thanks to MADnet Data, a decentralized data management platform. MADnet Data will enable advertisers and publishers to share data about ad performance and engagement directly with each other, in a secure, peer-to-peer fashion regulated by permissions and access control. Such data sharing can help to generate additional revenue streams for publishers while providing advertisers with deeper insight into the effectiveness of their ad campaigns. Here, again, it all boils down to transparency.

MADnet Core

MADnet Core is the server that matches advertisers to publishers for the purpose of placing ads. This is not just another ad server, however. Like the other parts of the MAD Network, MADnet Core operates in a decentralized fashion, with the network performing the work of finding out which publishers are a good match for which ads.
Because of this decentralized approach, no single party can control or manipulate the way ads are served. The core functionality of ad tech — matching advertisers with publishers — will remain open and transparent.

Token Sale

The MAD Network remains under very active development. MADnet Books is slated to be the first platform component to be completed, followed by MADnet Core and, later, MADnet Data.


To help support development of the MAD Network and offer the blockchain community an opportunity to invest in a platform that is poised to disrupt the ad tech industry from top to bottom, the MAD Network plans to host a token launch on November 30, 2017.

The post MadHive’s Mission to Restore Transparency and Fairness to Advertising appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.

Continue reading…

 

Qchain’s Forward Advancement Amid the Changing World of ICOs

Qchain thumbnail

Alongside Bitcoin’s meteoric rise in global interest and price has
been a frenzy of activity around
initial coin offerings (ICO).

According to the online coin offering tracker Coinschedule, in 2017
alone there have been nearly 250 ICOs collectively raising over $3 billion.
This heightened interest combined with the potential for lucrative returns has
prompted fears in some investment circles that we are facing a bubble. Indeed,
the bubble seems to have already popped to some extent, with far fewer ICOs
hitting their target raises than they were a few months ago.

Today’s ICOs are being initiated by funding-hungry startups, often
with a blind eye toward any sort of regulatory due diligence. As a result, this
wild and reckless approach has raised the eyebrows of the U.S. Securities and
Exchange Commission (SEC) among other regulatory bodies worldwide. The SEC, in
fact, has opened a new cyber unit for cryptocurrency violations to address the
proliferation of these campaigns.

What’s problematic here is the lack of compliance guidance with
respect to ICOs relative to crowdfunding regulations or federal securities law.
This prevailing environment has ignited calls for stricter oversights
addressing scams and “pump and dump” schemes that are now infiltrating this
space.

Startups have an enormous amounts of wiggle room when forming an
ICO token. Unfortunately, many of these campaigns are launched with little more
than a hastily constructed website and white paper with the company’s core
product rarely battle-tested by real users. This heightens the notion that reaching
cash rich startup status does not ensure product success.

Once acquired by investors, ICO tokens can then be exchanged in a
secondary market for liquid value. In the meantime, shareholders (mostly
founding members and lead developers) often lay claim to 10 or 20 percent of
the initial tokens tied to a vesting schedule. It’s the outside token investors
that are often at risk as they, at times, find themselves subjected to “pump
and dump” and other nefarious schemes, harming the overall integrity of the
crypto landscape.

Navigating the Ever-Evolving ICO Landscape

Wally Xie, CEO of Qchain, an emerging digital marketing, advertising and
analytics platform seeking to leverage the strengths of both NEM and Ethereum
blockchain protocol, said that that while know-your-customer (KYC) compliance
really hurt his company’s recent ICO, he felt that it was a necessary sacrifice
to make in terms of long-term legitimacy and the safe development of Qchain in
the U.S.

 

“We are finding that we
perhaps made the wrong move by targeting the cryptocurrency community at large,
rather than negotiating with ‘whales’ from the outset,” Xie said. “We’ve also faced
lots of legal challenges, such as having to do stringent KYC to comply with U.S.
regulations, since lots of money laundering is also happening in the space.”

 

Xie noted that similar
issues involving integrity and credibility are plaguing the industry his
company is taking aim at, namely, native advertising. He said that as that
industry’s expansion leads to improved
conversion rates compared to traditional web display ads, that has come at the
cost of trust found in traditional media outlets. This erosion of trust, he added,
has helped drive a flood of people toward “fake news” websites that
make their money in confirmation biases.

 

Xie is
worried that a similar scenario may be emerging in the high stakes game of ICO
funding.

 

“The ICO space is definitely changing as it is becoming more of a
pay-to-play environment,” Xie said. “Successful ICOs now typically already
receive massive pre-ICO investment from folks like Draper, so the feasibility
of an ICO for all parties involved has definitely changed. In some ways, it’s
become a less democratic process. ICOs are becoming less accessible and
stratification is starting to happen in a manner similar to what occurs in any
maturing space.”

 

Jordan Valentine, an expert
specializing in emerging technologies at Spitzberg Partners — a boutique corporate advisory and investment firm
headquartered in New York — believes that
we are fast approaching the
end of the frontier days in the ICO space, if we haven’t gotten there already.
He noted that in 2017, we had seen four nine-digit coin offerings and billions
raised through ICOs. That, he said, is simply too much money changing hands for
regulators to allow this bubble to grow unfettered.

 

“Going forward, government
agencies will certainly look to be more present in the crypto world as they
develop an institutional understanding of the issues at hand,” Valentine said. “My
personal hope is for a regulatory framework that reins in some of the more
reckless activity in crypto without unduly burdening legitimate innovation.”

 

Valentine believes that
this reaction is already in motion in the U.S. In July 2017, the SEC clarified
its stance on ICOs, warning that coin offerings would be subject to U.S.
securities laws. This means that coin offerings will be judged by the Howey
Test — a legal precedent for determining whether a financial instrument is an
investment contract. For U.S. investors, this distinction connotes strict
income or net worth requirements, restricting the pool in the U.S.

 

“Digital coins can be used
to confer a wide range of rights in addition to value, so their application
under securities law isn’t exactly straightforward,” said Valentine. “Interest
in coin offerings will likely be tempered a bit in the short term, as would-be
investors wait for further regulatory clarity and watch as the first penalties
are doled out. However, the allure of finding a big win will be enough to keep
this fundraising mechanism relevant, barring a serious clampdown from
Washington.”

 

When asked about the prevailing
trend toward launching an ICO campaign without a demonstrated product or
service, Valentine is skeptical.

 

 “An ICO backed only
by a white paper and a webpage is, in the best case, an incredibly questionable
gamble; in the worst cases, these raises are outright predatory, with the
organizers bailing as soon as possible,” he said. “Even in the case of a ‘good’
white paper ICO, buyers are taking on huge risk, as they generally do not
acquire any right to information or managerial discretion.”

 

But Valentine offers this
reminder:

 

“While most coin offerings
are very much a long shot bet to the buyer, they’re not all scams. There are a
number of potentially paradigm-changing ideas supported by a token that merit
the attention of the savvy and adventurous.”  


In response to sceptics, Xie said that Qchain made sure to have a fully-tested,
ready-to-employ platform in advance of launching its ICO campaign to avoid
giving the crypto industry a bad name.

 

In terms of our product, we didn’t want to espouse a ‘break first/fix
later’ ethos that has come to dominate Silicon Valley, made infamous by such
companies as Uber and Zenefits,” he said. “Funding is critical, but the quality
of what we are delivering will always come first.” 

The post Qchain’s Forward Advancement Amid the Changing World of ICOs appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.

Continue reading…

 

The Rublix Vision for Crypto Investing

RBLX thumb

With the exponential growth of cryptocurrency businesses, investing can be complex. This complexity has no doubt hindered mass adoption and prompted the need for trusted user-friendly tools to attract more traditional investors.

Specializing in blockchain and smart contract technology, the Canadian technology company Rublix is building a network that could make – not just cryptocurrency trading – but any trading less complex. They are launching the Rublix platform so that investors across the world can access and share valuable trading information for all markets.

The information will be provided to users from traders whose authenticity and credibility have been verified based on reputation and performance. This in turn will provide Rublix users with the credible analysis and strategies they need to have confidence trading. In the long term, the Rublix platform aims to help build and evolve a network of profitable traders by enhancing their skills, confidence and profitability.

Currently, most small traders and investors are limited in the number of desktop and mobile investing tools at their disposal. Rublix is developing an integrated, cross-platform suite to make it easier for nontechnical investors to utilize data analytics. The company believes that these tools will allow smaller investors to “trade the way the pros do,” thereby creating a more level playing field.

Currently, Rublix is navigating by an ambitious roadmap that involves the development of three signature products, as well as a foundational proprietary blockchain that will be utilized to manage the whole enterprise. The platform’s end goal is to bring scores of new traders into the crypto space by mitigating as many roadblocks as possible as well as aiding the broader trading world altogether.

Building the Rublix Toolbox

One of the signature solutions in the Rublix suite is the Hedge platform, which uses cutting-edge technologies to validate trading predictions. A key component of the platform are the trading “blueprints,” which use smart contracts to verify the trading predictions and penalize poor information. This will allow the larger investor community to track and replicate the work of successful traders with proven results.

The platform rewards traders who have exhibited a successful track record in delivering valuable trading blueprints. Experienced traders who have a demonstrated history of sound investments will be incentivized by Rublix tokens for their strategies and knowledge. This will allow even the least experienced traders to learn from the successful patterns of top investors.


Once the proprietary blockchain is developed, these rewards will be automatically distributed through smart contracts where the trader receives the token upon a successful prediction whereas the token is returned if they are incorrect. The alpha release of the platform is targeted for Q1 of 2018, with a version 1 general release scheduled for later in the year.

Rublix also has plans to develop an integrated trading platform called TradersEdge. This API-centric platform will allow for in-depth analysis to investors, including interactive charting mechanisms, enhanced indicators and myriad other features.

This flagship web application that Rublix is currently developing employs the programming language Java, and will feature a user-friendly, aesthetically pleasing interface to encourage traders and investors to participate in new cryptocurrency markets. Rublix is doing this by using a team of UX and creative designers to research and develop what will be a visually and functionally advanced digital trading space.

Finally, Rublix is creating a proprietary wallet called Centurio. Currently in alpha stage, this wallet will be used to store Rublix native cryptocurrency (RBLX).

User experience and aiding traders of all levels of sophistication are paramount for Rublix and these tools may only be the beginning for the company, as noted by CEO and co-founder David Waslen. “We’re at the stage of establishing and building a name for ourselves within the space by bringing a revolutionary product to life. We are using smart contracts and blockchain technology to build a trading ecosystem based on trust and transparency, which is completely different from current modern-day social trading platforms. Our plans are to integrate our Hedge application with ‘TradersEdge,’ allowing us to maximize efficiency between the knowledge learned on Hedge and executing efficient cryptocurrency trades via TradersEdge.”  

Token Sale

Rublix also has an upcoming token sale event, which will be conducted through the Ethereum blockchain. Eventually, the team plans to transition to their own blockchain, likely through a token swap. The Rublix crowdsale and token distribution will establish interested parties with tokens to be used on the platform.

Says co-founder and lead developer Peter Danihel: “Our intent is to disrupt the trading market by implementing a clear and concise trading tool that rewards experienced users for high-quality information. We seek to incentivize traders that have great information and reputable trading tips so that others in the market can learn from their analysis. Realizing that the feeling of not knowing where to start can be daunting for any newcomer in this industry, the ultimate goal for Rublix and Hedge is to pair experienced traders with newcomers, filling the void in the marketplace.”

Looking ahead at the Rublix roadmap, Waslen said, “Our long-term vision with Rublix is to continue to add unique financial-based tools to our lineup that support our mission of merging modern-day finance with the cryptocurrency sector. We are in an exciting technological era with the emergence of blockchain technology and we envision helping newcomers enter the sector as well as using the technology to help traders prosper in any industry from anywhere in the world.”

The post The Rublix Vision for Crypto Investing appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.

Continue reading…

 

Giga Watt Partnership Boosts Crowd-Gaming Ecosystem

Giga Watt gaming

Located in the State of Washington northeast of Grand Coulee Dam, the nation’s largest producer of hydroelectric power, Giga Watt is continuing its steady ascent into one of the top crypto mining operations in the world.

Recently, Giga Watt announced a partnership with the decentralized cloud gaming platform, Playkey. The partnership will employ Giga Watt’s powerful computing infrastructure to expand Playkey’s cloud gaming ecosystem.

The Playkey model uses both individual miners, including gamers with powerful PCs, and professional mining facilities, such as Giga Watt’s, to mine Playkey tokens (PKT). While mining, users help to support Playkey’s existing network by contributing to their GPU supercomputer solution.

This partnership comes on the heels of Playkey’s launch of a blockchain-powered cloud platform that allows anyone to play an unlimited number of top-rated games from around the world without downloads or installations. Playkey manages  this by enabling gamers with powerful PCs to share their GPU power, effectively acting as cloud service providers. This strategy will allow miners to boost their computational potential, affording them the same efficiency as cryptocurrency mining yet with less risk. Gamers can select the best server in the cloud to play their favorite games from any device, and pay for the service by using the PKT token.

The Giga Watt partnership represents a huge step forward in Playkey’s ecosystem building process. When the decentralized cloud gaming platform goes live next year, Giga Watt will allow Playkey to support a significant number of simultaneous gamers right from the start.

“Playkey benefits by having a professional mining partner in a key target market,” said Egor Gurjev, founder and CEO of Playkey. “The partnership will allow us to scale quickly in the United States while maintaining a high quality of service. As a major player in the mining market, Giga Watt will also help Playkey build connections in the professional mining industry.”

Gurjev also recognizes that cloud-based online gaming requires the same high-capacity computing power necessitated by Bitcoin mining, and Giga Watt’s state-of-the-art facility makes it a prime partner for Playkey’s move to blockchain.

Thanks to this innovative cloud-gaming service, Playkey gamers can play any AAA-level game on any PC, notebook or Mac — even obsolete devices. In other words, as long as their device is capable of displaying YouTube videos, players can use their computers for gaming via Playkey. Thus gamers can cease participating in the never-ending “weapons race” of regular and costly hardware upgrades.

“Today, 70 percent of Steam players are unable to play AAA titles such as Grand Theft Auto V in high resolution, while 30 percent of players cannot even run these titles on their legacy PCs,” said Gurjev. “Our mission at Playkey has been to solve this problem; and now by combining our current technological achievements with blockchain technology we can provide top level service all over the world.”

Gurjev believes the most complicated aspect in building a cloud-gaming ecosystem is during the initiation period, when there is a scaling risk that there could be more players than current miners can maintain. For Playkey, Giga Watt mitigates this possibility. “Their huge processing powers will cover this risk providing enough space and power for everyone to play,” said Gurjev.

The partnership is best characterized as strategic for both sides. Playkey and Giga Watt can provide each other with reciprocal business. Playkey uses more of Giga Watt’s power than ordinary private miners and, in turn, Giga Watt will provide a lot more mining power than Playkey’s private PC users.

The greatest hope for this partnership is that it will enable both technology companies to scale effectively with less risk. “We hope Giga Watt will provide us strong support during the first 12 months of Playkey platform growth in order to reach our goal of 1 million players in our decentralized cloud,” said Gurjev. “After that, in the following 24 months, we’re going to make a leap to 10 million players. When we reach those gaming audience levels, Playkey and Giga Watt hold dominant positions as game delivery and mining platforms.”

The post Giga Watt Partnership Boosts Crowd-Gaming Ecosystem appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.

Continue reading…

 

Confideal’s Crusade to Harness the Power of Smart Contracts

Confideal Thumb

In his book “Down The Rabbit Hole: Discover The Power of Blockchain,” author Tim Lea
highlights the evolution of smart contracts and their use ensuing from the
blockchain.

“The term smart contract was first coined by a
computer scientist Nick Szabo,” Lea writes. “In his 1996 article in the
magazine
Extrophy, he broadly described a smart contract as the
ability to bring refined legal practices of contract law to the e-commerce
protocols between strangers and the internet.”

In their most basic form, smart contracts are
self-executing contracts that function within mutually agreed upon terms
between two or more parties. These agreements, which are written into lines of
computer code, exist as part of a
distributed, decentralized blockchain network facilitating the
automatic execution of contractual terms with no further involvement from any
of the parties involved, including external third-party intermediaries.

This disruptive approach runs counter to the prevailing tradition of
drafting and enforcing deals through involvement with external players like
banks, lawyers and escrows. This practice is both time consuming and costly,
especially in cases involving overseas deals. While smart contract
technology helps to overcome these and other administrative and legal
roadblocks, a complex set of programming skills are required to draft
blockchain-based digital contracts.

Enter Confideal

One company that’s making major inroads in this new
age of smart contracts is
Confideal, a platform for
managing and enforcing smart contracts. Based in Ireland, a hub for crypto
adoption in Europe, Confideal is forging a path toward the removal of barriers
to digital transactions throughout the world. The company champions
transparency, opening up essential business tools to those without legal or
coding skills.

Confideal is a service designed for a wide audience
from individuals to business owners, and available for everyone,”
said Petr Belousov, Confideal’s founder and
CEO.

“Our ultimate goal is mass adoption of blockchain among real sector businesses worldwide.”

Because Confideal’s data is encrypted and
protected by the Ethereum blockchain, the immutability of the agreement terms
is assured. In addition, Confideal offers the following value propositions:
 

    
An internal arbitration module with top-rated arbiters
and unbiased ratings. Arbiters selected to resolve a dispute on the Confideal
platform are either a qualified third-party legal firm or a professional.

    
A smart contract management option that provides
full control over transactions (e. g. close deals, end them, set up fines and
down payments).

    
Cryptocurrencies are utilized to eliminate all
payment barriers. No need for intermediaries which results in lower costs.

With the groundbreaking advancements of blockchain
technology,
Confideal is on a
steady path to bridge the gap between the smaller circle of computer
programmers and coders who understand the inner workings of the technology and
the larger population of average, everyday users. With efforts to move smart
contracts toward mainstream adoption, efficient models of user interface become
vital. With Confideal’s efforts as a visual smart contract builder, it’s clear
that momentum in this space is heading in the right direction. Of course,
Confideal is not only about the builder itself. The three main features of
Confideal are: smart contracts, built-in arbitration, and CDL tokens. There are
tons of projects out there that offer only one feature and often they don’t
even have a ready to use product. Confideal, on the other hand, does have a
product and the project created a complete ecosystem that comes together into a
harmonious product. The built-in
arbitration module is used in case of a dispute and basically it means that a
third party arbitrator will help you resolve or mediate the dispute.

Confideal’s initial coin offering (ICO) will commence on November 2,
2017, under the token name “Confideal” or “CDL.” The total supply of CDL tokens
will be 100,000,000 with a price breakdown of 1,000 CDL to 1 ETH. The total
supply will never increase and no additional tokens will ever be released.

CDL tokens are the internal, native currency for the Confideal
platform. For all transactions made in CDL, 1 percent of the contract fee is
exempted. Moreover, token users can participate in voting for arbiters.

Of the total ICO supply, 74 percent of the tokens will be sold via the
ICO. The remainder will be distributed as follows: 6 percent were sold during
the pre-ICO; 10 percent have been set aside for the team behind the platform; 4
percent for promotional activities; 4 percent for advisors; and 2 percent for a
bounty campaign.

“Following our ICO, we have a detailed roadmap
planned for developing the product,”
Belousov said. “It includes the launch
of the arbitration module, API and widget, implementation of multiple smart
contract templates for various purposes, multi-language support, integration
with other technologies and blockchains. It is with this that we are excited
about the future of smart contracts.” 

You can reach out for more on Confideal through Telegram.

Note: Trading and investing in digital assets is speculative. Based on the shifting business and regulatory environment of such a new industry, this content should not be considered investment or legal advice.

The post Confideal’s Crusade to Harness the Power of Smart Contracts appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.

Continue reading…

 

Robomed Network Unleashes Linkages Between Healthcare Patients and Providers

Robomed Thumb

The global healthcare
market is vast and complex, with equity funding to digital health companies
having reached $5.8 billion so far this year. Within this space, myriad models
of healthcare delivery are being employed as breakthrough technologies are
introduced.

 

A concept that’s gaining
increased attention is the “patient-oriented medical network.” In this model, patients can manage and control their healthcare data
through a mobile electronic medical record (EMR) — information they’re able to
grant their doctors access to when requested.   

 

This mode of value-based
physician-to-patient engagement is designed to impact care quality, cost and
patient access across an entire healthcare continuum. One company that’s making
a mark in this area is an innovative global digital platform known as Robomed
Network.

 

Robomed
is introducing a solution that allows the medical industry to replace the old,
prevailing ways of managing healthcare processes with new ones designed to
boost efficiency, effectiveness and transparency. This is achieved through the
elimination of non-value-added processes and clinical errors.

Robomed
Network is comprised of 23 clinics across the world. Through the use of this
ecosystem, patients around the globe have access to bureaucracy-free,
affordable and quality medical care targeted to their specific needs.

What drives all of this is
a medical network managed by a blockchain token, designed to provide the most
effective medical care. Robomed serves as the linkage point between health
service providers and patients, all tied to a smart contract built on top of
the Ethereum platform.


“Robomed’s
blockchain is designed to constantly expand available capacity for
record-keeping, transactions tracking and accumulation of a diverse database of
medical knowledge and clinical pathways applied to treating a numerous range of
medical cases,” said Robomed Network co-founder Philipp Mironovich. “We believe
that the scope of medical services rendered to patients is bound to grow with
the processes for obtaining these services streamlined.”

As a part of the Robomed
Network, participating in-network clinics utilize what is known as “Robomed
EНR,” a process-automation system geared for medical centers, which includes
unified medical data storage and health management tools. Its primary purpose
is to integrate all participating clinics into a single information space,
allowing various service providers to quickly interact without bureaucratic,
financial or legal barriers.

 

This
bridge between the patients seeking quality medical care and access to it is a
smart contact. This interactive digital mechanism allows patients to obtain
access to a chain of healthcare providers committed to delivering the best
medical care consistent with the digital clinical guidelines registered in
Robomed Network.

These
clinical guidelines are adopted via a constantly updated, competitive and
transparent voting process involving the medical and patient community. The
goal here is to utilize a diverse set of healthcare treatments and high
standards to fulfill patients’ expectations.

Robomed
Network issues its own tokens to drive the smart contract engagement between
healthcare providers and patients. This elevates service value by granting
token owners full accomplishment of clinical guidelines for cases.

Patients
engage with the Robomed Network via Robomed Mobile or Robomed Web. The
proprietary smart contract technology provides a unique opportunity to create a
single system of coordinates with clinical outcomes as a reference point.

Given
the possibilities and examples of using the Ethereum blockchain platform, the
Robomed Network team is excited about this decentralized, cross-border
ecosystem of healthcare providers they’ve created, based on an open smart
contract and cryptocurrency.

Robomed’s
history goes a couple of years back, to when co-founders Mironovich and Ivan
Devyatkov decided to combine their expertise from the IT and healthcare
sectors. Mironovich had been involved in the startup of several hospitals, and
Devyatkov was involved in scaling up the second-biggest healthcare laboratory
player in Russia. This is how the basic version of Robomed EHR emerged.

“Robomed’s
mission is to provide equal healthcare to the world,” said Mironovich. “This
means that Robomed aims toward constantly improving the effectiveness and
efficiency of healthcare services across its global platform.”

Note: Trading and investing in digital assets is speculative. Based on the shifting business and regulatory environment of such a new industry, this content should not be considered investment or legal advice.

The post Robomed Network Unleashes Linkages Between Healthcare Patients and Providers appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.

Continue reading…

 

Qchain Charts New Native Advertising Roadmap

qchain header

Today’s native advertising world, where a publication’s editorial content is paid for by an advertiser to promote their product or service is fraught with challenges threatening the ad industry. Due in part to the growing dominance of digital media giants like Facebook, Google, and Amazon, display advertising conversions continue to experience a decline. This trend has spurred efforts to find new solutions for navigating the prevailing advertising ecosystem in a scalable, trustworthy and secure way.



A Viable Solution in the Blockchain?

This nascent technology, which undergirds Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, is certainly garnering attention in the ad tech industry. In the past 18 months, companies like MadHive, Basic Attention Token (BAT) and adChain have come to market employing blockchain protocols to applications in the digital advertising supply chain.

One creative approach to solving problems in the ad tech supply chain is an application being developed on the Ethereum and NEM blockchains by Qchain. The open source platform will use blockchain technology to facilitates transactional engagement between advertisers and content publishers, while being mediated and arbitrated by hosts. Akin to Google AdSense Network, Qchain is targeting a three-pronged approach (advertiser, publisher, and host) with an emphasis on a proof-of-interaction transaction verification system.


What makes Qchain unique as opposed to other adtech blockchain startups is its ability to subtly shift the digital advertising model in a way that’s more favorable to advertisers. User experience and ease-of-use has therefore emerged as a top priority in the company’s development amid an environment of advertisers and publishers who are traditionally fairly conservative when it comes to change.  As in the case of BAT, Qchain aims to focus more on conversions versus rewarding users for their attention.


Amid its growing involvement in the intersection between blockchain technology and advertising, Qchain champions the notion that Ethereum and NEM are the two most promising enterprise-centric blockchain hubs currently in development. The former allows for ease in development of decentralized smart contracts; the latter skillfully delivers the Proof-of-Importance (POI) algorithm and the EigenTrust++ reputation system to encourage transactions. Users therefore will have maximum choice at their disposal, opting for the blockchain that most accurately suits their needs.


The infrastructural foundation of Qchain consists of four main elements: the advertiser section, the publisher section, the host section and the marketplace. A user can serve as both an advertiser and publisher.

Qchain’s Multidisciplinary Beginnings

“The members of the team and I are curious about the world, and a wide variety of academic subjects,” said CEO Wally Xie about Qchain’s ambitious direction. “Therefore we like to go where there are complex problems to solve.”

Xie has long been fascinated by complex systems, and therefore saw blockchains are also an extension of that. At the National Institutes of Health, he  worked on using neural networks to simulate and replicate human brain behavior. Now at the University of California Irvine he is  working on comparing complicated mathematical climate models using Bayesian statistics. “Brains and climate are complex systems, and so are blockchains,” says Xie.

After a few years of following the blockchain industry and its meteoric climb, Xie saw the “third generation” of crypto enthusiasts as well as the concept of tokenization as paths to opening up more opportunities for blockchain technology’s application. At the end of last year, he started brainstorming business and technical problems that could be solved by decentralization and transparency.

While daydreaming in class one day in early 2017 (he’s currently pursuing a PhD in Mathematical Biology at UC Irvine), Xie began comparing blockchain technology with what he had learned working for the social media management firm Sprout Social. Xie realized that blockchains could make payouts and transactions in advertising and marketing cheaper and more convenient. He believes that the transparency of blockchain technology makes it easier to spot ad fraud post-hoc, harder to get away with things like SSP arbitrage, and improves the bargaining power of advertisers and publishers in the digital advertising ecosystem. He also appreciates that it allows an easy way to transfer funds directly between advertisers and publishers without a central deposit.

“Of course, my views have gotten more nuanced,” admitted Xie. “I have learned that there are parties in the digital advertising ecosystem that do not want transparency. I am also of the opinion that the decline of standard web display advertising and anemic conversion rates of ads was a far larger problem than ad fraud in digital advertising.”

The first digital marketplace for native advertising

As their  roadmap states, Qchain has recently launched a demo for Qchain Native Direct Buy, the first piece of the platform. This part of the application will focus on creating a marketplace enabling simple and easy transactions of native ad units between content publishers and advertisers.

Xie said, “Native advertising buys are being conducted in an inefficient manner right now. Content publishers have large, unwieldy sales teams and have to do a lot of cold calls. Advertisers have to search for publishers and individually contact them to shop for native ads via phone, email or in-person meetings; they do not have convenient means of seeing available native ad units for sale in one place.”

Here is where Native Direct Buy comes in. Qchain aims to help solve these problems by providing a singular and accessible marketplace for advertisers and content publishers, such as BuzzFeed and Vox, to efficiently transact in native ad units. Blockchain technology, Xie pointed out, contributes to this idea by allowing advertisers to directly pay content publishers through cryptocurrency and potentially future tokenized fiat accounts, rather than going through a centralized deposit system. Additionally, Xie suggested that a Native Direct Buy on the blockchain is more feasible to execute in the short term than a prototypical ad exchange based on blockchain scaling problems that cannot handle high transaction volume.

Xie said that the company is also in the process of developing their second application, Qchain Surveys, which will provide an enterprise paid survey service for marketers, pollsters and academics to inform their research.

“We will add applications in the future as we see fit to fill out the platform and fulfill our aims of building an entire end-to-end ecosystem for digital marketers and advertisers to run their whole workflow on blockchain technology,” Xie pointed out.

Qchain also has taken the rare step of developing a ready-to-employ, fully tested platform in advance of their ICO campaign – an approach that runs counter to most blockchain projects whose white paper/website only campaigns have given the ICO scene a bit of a black mark.

Xie concludes: “We want to be an example of a sustainable, ethical company that grew from a legally compliant ICO. We want to make the sponsored content sales process more convenient and easy for content publishers, so that they can spend more time working on projects that also are not sponsored and satisfy their journalistic responsibilities.”

The post Qchain Charts New Native Advertising Roadmap appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.

Continue reading…