Shitcoiners have fat bags, really fat bags, really, really fat bags. Two weeks ago I put nostr.com up for sale to see what responses I would get back. I imagined Roger Ver offering to sell bitcoin dot com in 2013, and what would have happened if another player had bought it. I had a few groups of shitcoiners offer to buy the domain (prob to do some Nostr ICO), but yeah, that wont happen.
Almost 3 years ago I made the first twitter clone on Nostr, and started bugging the Nostr telegram group to buy nostr.com. After a few weeks of bugging I bit the bullet, sold almost 1btc and secured the domain. The domain festered for a few years with a poorly made splash page for Nostr projects.
At the beginning of this year, with all the much deserved attention Nostr started to garner, it was clear we needed a better splash page. We hosted the excellent site created for nostr.how by jeffg on the site. To make use of the domain, Fiatjaf was given full reign to host great nostr projects on subdomains of nostr.com (thank you for that Fiatjaf). Being the most visited site for Nostr, it is clearly a very important gateway for the clearnet folks.
Those Covid years were a productive period, as well as the creation of Nostr, a few of us, such as Fiatjaf, Eneko and myself created LNbits, an extension based lightning wallet accounts system, which would make it easy to showcase cutting edge bitcoin functionality. While Nostr was bubbling away and great contributors started building clients that actually worked, I focused all my attention on LNbits. Although not having time to develop on Nostr, I shilled the protocol as much as possible, talking about it in popular bitcoin podcasts and doing the first Nostr talk at HCCP in 2021.
We had a few Nostr LNbits extensions in the pipeline from 2022, such as an easy one click relay, extension for selling NIP05 addresses, the Nostr-market extension (its predecessor Diagon Alley, being one of the influences to the creation to the Nostr protocol), and an always on Nostr-client extension that could multiplex relays and direct notes to different extensions in LNbits (needed for Nostr-market so the merchant can generate invoices without their client being "online").
LNbits was always a hobby project. but as the project evolved and was being used in the wild (even by a bank) it made sense to push hard to get the project out of beta. It was also weird that we were creating a useful accounting tool but not using it in a business context ourselves. With the blessing of the community, LNbits core devs created LNbits Inc, a for-profit arm that would help develop LNbits and provide some useful services, such as a one click launch LNbits software as a service (similar to launching WordPress on wordpress.com), a shop for selling all our DIY bitcoin hardware/swag, and a support service for people wanting to implement LNbits in their stack. We were given a pre-seed by the excellent Max Webster from Hivemind Ventures, which meant 6 of us could work on LNbits full time for a year, to create the services and push to get LNbits out of beta.
All the Nostrcentric LNbits extensions were given momentum with the Nostrenaissance of early 2023, and we were able to get them ready(ish) to unveil at Nostrica, as well as a hardware Nostr signing device created by Myself, Vlad Stan, Fiatjaf and Stephan Snigrev.
It made sense to the development of our Nostr extensions that we used them to offer some services on nostr.com, similar to what we had done with LNbits Inc, so I planned to give LNbits Inc the right to manage the domain over the next 3 years, to maximize its usefulness, by offering relay services, NIP05 names, and selling DIY Nostr signing devices.
Before LNbits Inc seed round, and "officially" passing the rights to the company, I decided to float the domain on the market see if there was someone out there willing to buy the domain. Within the first few days some folks reached out, but after some superficial digging it was clear their intentions might not be honourable. I have worked tirelessly for six years on free and open-source bitcoin software and hardware. All the engineers I have worked with during that period are here for bitcoin's/Nostr potentiality to create greater liberty and freedom. Nostr WILL change our world for the better, and although I believe nostr.com can be made more useful, it is imperative nostr.com can not/will not ever fall into corrupt hands. Having a team managing the domain will help that not happen. I am happy to hand control over to LNbits Inc, and am extremely excited to see more wonderful tools/applications being delivered through it.
Also check out the excellent Nostr-market update.
Pura Vida. Start wearing purple.
This is a guest post by Ben Arc. Opinions expressed are entirely their own and do not necessarily reflect those of BTC Inc or Bitcoin Magazine.
In recent years, the world has witnessed a remarkable shift towards digital currencies, with Bitcoin taking the lead. Now, a powerful advocate for this decentralized form of money has emerged in the form of Prince Philip of Serbia. With visionary initiatives he is working on like Jan3 and Aqua Wallet, he is leading the way for Bitcoin nation-state adoption. Let's delve into the various aspects that highlight Prince Philip's role in this global movement.
Prince Philip of Serbia is not just a member of royalty; he is also a passionate advocate for the widespread use of Bitcoin. His influence, combined with his knowledge of financial systems, allows him to spearhead innovative initiatives that bridge the gap between traditional governance and the free, decentralized, and digital future he seeks.
Prince Philip envisions a world where Bitcoin becomes an integral part of a nation-state's financial system. Through collaboration with governments, he aims to facilitate the adoption of Bitcoin as legal tender, thereby revolutionizing how transactions are conducted and empowering citizens to embrace the benefits of Bitcoin.
Bitcoin can thrive as a legitimate alternative to traditional fiat currencies.
While Prince Philip's efforts are global in nature, his focus on El Salvador is particularly significant. El Salvador holds the distinction of being the first country to accept Bitcoin as legal tender, thanks to the groundbreaking legislation passed in 2021. This move has garnered international attention and sparked discussions about the future of Bitcoin in mainstream economies.
Prince Philip's role as a bridge between nations goes beyond Bitcoin adoption. He envisions a global network of interconnected economies, where Bitcoin serves as a catalyst for economic growth, financial inclusion, and cross-border cooperation. His tireless efforts to promote the benefits of Bitcoin are driven by a genuine belief in the transformative power of decentralized finance.
The deployment of Jan3 in El Salvador has the potential to transform the country's economy. By educating and promoting the use of Bitcoin, Jan3 fosters financial inclusion and stimulates economic growth.
Another remarkable innovation championed by Jan3 is Aqua Wallet. This user-friendly digital wallet provides a secure and convenient way to store, send, and receive Bitcoin. With its intuitive interface and robust security measures, Aqua Wallet encourages a wider audience to explore the world of Bitcoin.
Aqua Wallet plays a crucial role in advancing Bitcoin adoption in El Salvador. By facilitating easy and secure transactions, it eliminates the barriers that may deter individuals from embracing digital currencies. Aqua Wallet empowers Salvadorans to participate in the Bitcoin economy and leverage its potential for personal and economic growth.
Furthermore, Jan3 helps reduce the dependency on traditional banking systems in El Salvador. With a significant portion of the population lacking access to basic financial services, Jan3 is hoping Aqua Wallet citizens globally can use it to help conduct bitcoin financial transactions. This not only empowers individuals but also strengthens the overall resilience of the economy.
As the movement for Bitcoin nation-state adoption gains momentum, it is essential to consider potential challenges and solutions, as well as the global implications of this shift.
A successful Bitcoin nation-state would not only impact the adopting country but also have ripple effects worldwide. It challenges the traditional monetary system by offering an alternative that transcends borders and promotes financial sovereignty. This could inspire other nations to explore Bitcoin adoption and reshape the global financial landscape.
In conclusion, Prince Philip of Serbia's leadership in advocating for Bitcoin nation-state adoption is reshaping the future of finance. Through initiatives like Jan3 and Aqua Wallet, he is empowering individuals and governments to embrace the potential of Bitcoin. From his vision for a Bitcoin nation-state to the impact of Jan3 and Aqua Wallet, Prince Philip's efforts are paving the way for a Bitcoin revolution. As the world embarks on this transformative journey, it is crucial to remain vigilant, collaborative, and forward-thinking in our approach to harnessing the power of Bitcoin.
This is an opinion editorial by Daniel Hinton, the head of finance and operations for sFOX, a bitcoin prime broker and custodian, and Steve Jeffress, creator of Bitcoin UTXO set visualizer UTXO.live.
We now know how to infer the daily price of bitcoin within 1% by looking only at the unspent transaction output (UTXO) set.
With this, we can build decentralized applications that rely on the UTXO set -- rather than on trusted third-party oracles -- for the USD price used in discreet log contracts (DLCs) and smart contracts.
The possibilities for decentralized applications on Bitcoin using this "UTXOracle" are enormous.
There is no single price of bitcoin. Every second of the day, there are thousands of exchanges, brokers, OTC desks, payment companies and other market participants around the world quoting the price of bitcoin -- and none of them is always correct.
In this article, we will explore a new way of interpreting the Bitcoin UTXO set that accurately reflects a bitcoin price at each block height and has the potential to serve as the foundation for a new era of trust-minimized, decentralized finance on Bitcoin.
What trust-minimized tools could you build if you could calculate an accurate price for bitcoin at each block height, using only your Bitcoin full node and an open-source model?
Any one of these concepts, successfully implemented on the Bitcoin blockchain in a trust-minimized way, could deliver tremendous value to both Bitcoiners -- utilizing bitcoin for its superior monetary properties -- and participants in the Bitcoin ecosystem who need to remain partially tied to USD but want to utilize Bitcoin as their settlement network.
During the 2016 to 2017 "Blocksize Wars," the merits of not only running a fully-validating Bitcoin node, but conducting economic activity using your node, were convincingly argued in helping the network avoid a meaningful fork that could have delayed Bitcoin's success.
For purposes of our current discussion, it can be said that this tumultuous time in Bitcoin's history emphasized that, in the same way that someone can run 1 million "full nodes" on a cloud server that signal for a particular "upgrade" but not influence the network of economic actors in any way if they are not actively settling transactions, centralized exchanges can produce volume and price statistics that, in reality, do not carry economic weight, and which are not reflected in the UTXOs that are settled onto the Bitcoin blockchain.
You can temporarily give the appearance of having more bitcoin than you do within a closed system like an exchange, but as long as there is a credible threat of withdrawal for settlement to the Bitcoin base layer, any mispricing within the closed system will eventually resolve itself back to equilibrium with the external market.
For example, when Mt. Gox was insolvent in 2013 to 2014, but before it officially collapsed, the reported price of bitcoin on the platform was markedly different from other exchanges due to the fact that Mt. Gox did not have nearly as much bitcoin as it claimed. As a result, it needed to entice new users to deposit to the exchange in order to fulfill withdrawals from existing customers. Within the Mt. Gox system, the price could be manipulated, but when users attempted to arbitrage the price back to the market, Mt. Gox collapsed.
In contrast, the Bitcoin blockchain is the hardest ledger in the world to corrupt. It represents the entire history of economic settlement activity to have occurred and is the final arbiter of truth with regard to the status of all bitcoin in existence.
Transactions that matter are settled on the Bitcoin blockchain, not in closed systems. Final settlement is what matters.
People have a difficult time grasping Bitcoin, since it's impossible for them to take a physical coin out of their pocket, point to it, and say, "This is a bitcoin."
One analogy I've gravitated toward when describing a specific amount of bitcoin in a person's possession is visualizing an individual bill in a physical wallet. These bills can represent any amount and are only good for one use. So, if you need to spend $3, and only have a $100 bill, you can't rip off a corner of the bill. You would need to spend the entire $100 bill and get your change back. In Bitcoin parlance, each of these bills is a UTXO. Any time you send bitcoin, you are spending (and destroying) at least one UTXO while simultaneously creating at least one new one. If you run any version of the Bitcoin software, at any point in time you can count up all the bitcoin contained in existing UTXOs to determine exactly how much bitcoin currently exists.
In fact, when used together, the Bitcoin blockchain and UTXO set are perfectly accurate in determining the history and current state of the Bitcoin network. This never-before-seen capability in a decentralized system helped the 19 million bitcoin currently in existence grow to be worth several hundred billion dollars.
The Bitcoin software uses units of bitcoin (satoshis) for its internal accounting. While it may be obvious that 1 bitcoin equals 1 bitcoin, this also means that when someone wants to "send $100 of bitcoin," the participants in this transaction need to agree on the price of bitcoin at the time of the transaction to know how much bitcoin this corresponds to.
Did you know that many people transact bitcoin in round USD amounts? Interestingly, because this is such a common occurrence, there are clearly-recognizable patterns that exist in the UTXO set that can be used to closely infer the price of bitcoin at any point in the past or present (see the chart below).
Imagine that you are buying bitcoin at an ATM (or buying a gift card online). Will you buy $100 worth or $39.27 worth?
Round USD values ranging from $1 up to several thousand dollars are very common denominations in the Bitcoin blockchain. In fact, since 2014, there has been a growing on-chain footprint of these round-USD-value bitcoin transactions which on some days can account for up to 25% of daily outputs created.
The United States has by far the largest installed base of Bitcoin ATMs globally. U.S. Bitcoin ATM operators have grown dramatically since 2019 and the Bitcoin UTXO set vividly displays this market's growth as more people choose to hold or at least transact in bitcoin over USD.
Also, as seen with clients at sFOX, Bitcoin ATM flows are made of nearly all customer buys (putting cash into an ATM and receiving bitcoin), so the on-chain footprint of this activity consolidates signals at round USD values. Other large bitcoin markets, such as gift cards, peer-to-peer exchanges, and many other, less common use cases, also contribute to this pattern of USD-denominated bitcoin usage.
There is only one bitcoin UTXO set at any given block height. This picture depicts the entire, approximately 70 million UTXOs that comprise all 19 million bitcoin in existence, as of block 772,298.
With Bitcoin being truly permissionless, anyone running a fully-validating Bitcoin node has this exact same data on their computer and can independently replicate this exact same dataset for this point in time. A live version of this visualization can be seen and interacted with at utxo.live.
Zooming into the 2022 section of the chart highlights that there are consistent patterns in the UTXO set. We'll focus on two such patterns: Horizontal lines and wavy lines.
Horizontal lines (the flat lines) represent:
The fact that horizontal lines exist isn't all that impressive. People transacting in bitcoin often transact in round amounts of bitcoin.
But the fact that the wavy lines exist clearly and consistently is a big deal. It means that, given an open-source model, this could help bring about the ability to:
How can you easily test the hypothesis that the wavy lines represent movement of bitcoin denominated in USD? Simply pick a date when you know the BTC/USD price crossed a round USD value and see if the horizontal and wavy lines cross.
One such case is July 27, 2020. Bitcoin was recovering from the March 2020 mayhem and crossed over $10,000 per BTC.
The image below shows the wavy line (USD) crossing down below the horizontal line (BTC) at the same time that the price rose above $10,000 per BTC. This particular image is the 10,000 sat (0.0001 BTC) line, but the same pattern exists at many other BTC denominations as you progress up the UTXO chart.
Still don't see it? Zoom in and explore a high-resolution image at utxo.live.
Clearly, the wavy lines on the chart show transactions denominated in USD.
This has enormous ramifications, since the wavy line pattern exists in varying degrees in every block, and is extremely consistent over rolling periods such as every 144 blocks (roughly 24 hours).
Seeing the horizontal and variable lines cross at round USD values is nice, but a majority of the time, the lines are not very close to one another. We need a way to prime a pricing model from these crossing points that will infer an accurate, current price at any block height after the model is primed.
Enter the UTXOracle model.
In this preliminary model, an input date of July 27, 2020, a day when bitcoin rose above $10,000, is used to prime the model to a best fit for that day's price. Using only this single day's UTXOs, and an input of that single day's volume-weighted average price (VWAP), we are able to create a model that, when used with a future date's UTXO set changes, infers the daily price of bitcoin with remarkable accuracy from this day forward, utilizing only the Bitcoin UTXO set with no reference to any external price data after July 27, 2020.
The red line is the daily VWAP from sFOX, an aggregator whose price encompasses the filled trades from dozens of exchanges and OTC desks.
The blue line is the UTXOracle daily price calculation based on each day's UTXO changes.
For the measurement period of July 2020 to January 2023, the model performs exceptionally well, with daily median and daily average variances between the actual VWAP and the UTXOracle price of 0.65% and 1.04%, respectively, both of which are within the normal range of fees charged for bitcoin purchases at retail exchanges.
It's been said that all models are wrong, but some models are useful. One key difference between the UTXOracle model and other models that output a bitcoin price is that the UTXOracle model does not seek to predict a future price. It merely attempts to infer an accurate current price based on recent blocks and corresponding changes in the UTXO set. Given that the current model has also not been fine tuned for a best fit and simply uses a single primer date for its input, the model is clearly wrong -- hopefully it can be useful.
If Bitcoin has taught me anything, it's that trade-offs exist. The UTXOracle model is no different.
The Bitcoin UTXO set is a beautiful, living monument to the human spirit but try as we may, any model created from it will not fully encapsulate the entirety of the underlying activity which it represents. A map cannot be as accurate as the territory it represents.
The UTXOracle model relies on several concepts to function correctly:
People may create UTXOs at amounts that would mimic the price being another level than reality.
On centralized venues, people have been known to "spoof" large buy or sell orders in an order book to make it seem as though there is a large buyer or seller in the market, only to later remove these buy/sell orders without actually having any trades filled. This can actually move markets on centralized venues, but you cannot spoof UTXOs. They either exist in a mined block or they do not.
It takes a long time to create a fake price signal and it's obvious when someone tries to do so.
Currently, it looks as though using a daily UTXOracle signal, rather than a single block interval, achieves a price accurate enough to use in practice. This approach has the added benefit of greatly increasing the cost of attack in mimicking or censoring transactions which would be most useful in producing the UTXOracle price at any certain time.
Even if someone created many UTXOs at levels mimicking a different bitcoin price, there is no mechanism to remove the real transactions that reflect the accurate price. At best, an attacker would create an additional set of wavy lines.
UTXOs are expensive to fake. There is no such thing as "spam" in the Bitcoin blockchain. There are only transactions that pay a fee to be included in a block. This means that blockchain data is expensive to produce or censor and there is a real cost of capital in creating UTXOs to fake a price signal.
Current model accuracy diminishes after about two years, as is visible in the chart. In practice, it's likely that a model will need to be recalibrated after some period of time. Changing the model to take into account different UTXO patterns carries much less risk than changing consensus rules in Bitcoin. Unless participants are transacting in multi-year options/futures contracts on chain, this is likely not a meaningful barrier to use.
The current model does not deal with extreme volatility well. Mempool variations and price volatility create situations where the UTXOracle price can temporarily vary from the centralized exchange price by more than 10%. While this can likely be improved upon with a more comprehensive model it does highlight a potential serious limitation of the practical use of the model.
Then there is the AI echo chamber problem: If the model is very successful, it may become less effective. In a world where many people are settling economic activity using the price inferred by a UTXOracle model, there will be many additional UTXOs settled in round USD values. These UTXOs may diminish the model's accuracy or distort it in other ways similar to how a large-language model (LLM) trained on LLM-generated content will not match the effectiveness of one trained on human-generated content.
Love it or hate it, you know the word "Ordinal." Ordinals taught me that people can coalesce around a methodology of interpreting the UTXO set that is technically external to Bitcoin, but which can be solidified at the social layer as an additional protocol on top of Bitcoin.
It is my hope that a sufficiently-accurate UTXOracle model will be produced by someone which will allow people to use that version of the model as a schelling point in building decentralized applications on Bitcoin.
It is my further hope that Bitcoiners can develop a method of using these one or more competing models in a trust-minimized way to expand how Bitcoin is able to bring financial peace to the world.
A successful implementation would be one in which:
And one in which any of these security models is possible:
This would enable users to buy or sell contracts in an open marketplace where outcomes are administered by participants using a UTXOracle price.
For example: Alice deposits an amount of bitcoin to a DLC-governed address. Bob pays Alice an amount of bitcoin denominated in USD (as evidenced by the UTXOracle price). At the time of settlement, Alice or Bob may produce a signature from an oracle attesting to the price calculated under the UTXOracle model to determine the settlement flow of funds as expired or exercised.
Users can borrow or lend in an open marketplace where the loan life cycle is administered by participants using a UTXOracle price.
For example: I have 1 BTC (at a $100,000 value) and want to take a partial loan of $30,000 without selling my bitcoin. I can coordinate with a market-maker to deposit my 1 BTC and the market maker's 0.3 BTC (at a value of $30,000) to an address governed by a DLC. Upon funding, I may spend the 0.3 BTC for my desired use case.
In this use case, the borrower has the option to sign a transaction granting the market maker $30,000 in value of the original 1 BTC or to deposit $30,000 in value (as evidenced by the UTXOracle price) and withdraw the original 1 BTC.
Upon liquidation, if the value of the 1 BTC in the DLC-governed address falls to somewhere near $30,000 (as evidenced by the UTXOracle price), the market maker can sweep out the entire 1 BTC to liquidate the loan and recoup their principal.
The UTXOracle model also offers an interesting use case around "stablesats," referring to bitcoin-backed USD stablecoins or stable-value USD accounts denominated in bitcoin on Lightning.
For instance, imagine that you want to hold $1,000 worth of bitcoin for the next month. You do not want to or cannot hold the $1,000 in cash, at a bank, in Ethereum- or Tron-based stablecoins or on an exchange. You could enter into an agreement with a market maker on the Lightning Network to stream the daily net price change in value to you. You would be able to independently validate that the correct amounts are being paid by using the UTXOracle model you agreed to. At the end of the month you will have a different amount of bitcoin in your Lightning channel, but it will be worth $1,000.
As a seller in an online marketplace, it's currently difficult to price items in bitcoin due to the volatility as well as the fact that your expenses are likely in USD. But accepting payments in USD means accepting chargeback risk, fraud and the fees and complexity inherent in modern payment systems. Pricing products in USD, but having the flexibility to accept a USD value in bitcoin via the UTXOracle model, could encourage more bitcoin-denominated commerce.
As outlined in this article, I believe the UTXOracle model could be a powerful tool in advancing Bitcoin use cases and extending financial freedom to more of the world. While it has trade-offs, I believe it represents an exciting frontier that can improve upon existing solutions that require more trust in third parties.
This is a guest post by Daniel Hinton and Steve Jeffress. Opinions expressed are entirely their own and do not necessarily reflect those of BTC Inc or Bitcoin Magazine.
Ten years ago this week, Joe Rogan, the world's most popular podcaster, mentioned Bitcoin, a first in what has been an off-and-on theme of his programming ever since.
As noted by Bitcoin Historian Pete Rizzo today, September 24 marks the anniversary of Joe Rogan's interview with libertarian philosopher Stefan Molyneux, aired in 2013. In a wide-ranging conversation, the two discussed topics ranging from atheism to fiat currency, the later topic being the frame in which Bitcoin was discussed.
Addressing the subject of failed government money, Molyneux mentioned that fiat money actually has a relatively short history, with the truth being that most government monies lose value and collapse.
"[There have only been] 240 different paper monies. Some government issues some bullshit currency, and then it blows up, then they issue some new currency, and there's only one of them that's still in circulation - the British pound, which has lost like 97% of its value. The dollar has lost 98% of its value," he said.
Molyneux went on to discuss how empires like ancient Rome struggled and ultimately collapsed due to inflation, prompting Rogan to remark: "Can we bitcoin our way out of this?"
It's a question that is arguably even more relevant today.
According to data, Bitcoin has surged by a staggering 20,000% since its first mention on the Joe Rogan Experience podcast. At the time it was trading a global average price of roughly $120, making Bitcoin one of the most lucrative investments that Rogan could have made during this period.
Ever since, the Joe Rogan Experience has become an influential platform in the world of podcasting, with Rogan inking a multimillion-dollar deal with Spotify in 2021.
Since then, Rogan has discussed the topic with guests like Andreas Antonopoulos, though some fans have shown dismay that he has yet to dedicate a full episode to the topic, or invite popular personalities like Michael Saylor or Saifedean Ammous who can expand on the topic with the full learnings of the technology's history.
As the cryptocurrency landscape evolves, it remains to be seen how Bitcoin's journey will unfold, but its first mention on the Joe Rogan Experience podcast will undoubtedly be remembered as a milestone in its history.
Coinbase revealed a campaign to move more than 52 million U.S.-based cryptocurrency holders to call for clear and precise regulation. The push, part of a countrywide initiative, will be supported by a paid media campaign across multiple platforms but directed to nine states where most crypto owners are concentrated.
Coinbase, the largest U.S.-based cryptocurrency exchange, has unleashed a campaign that seeks to leverage 52 million crypto holders in the country to ask for clear regulation in the cryptocurrency industry. According to the exchange, clear laws in the field will benefit crypto and non-crypto holders alike, who collectively believe the current financial system needs a change.
The first phase of this campaign aims to organize the community to move out of X (formerly known as Twitter) and to take this battle to phone calls, mobilizing crypto users to “take one minute of their day to call their member of Congress and ask them to pass clear, sensible legislation,” per a press release.
In addition, the movement will be supported by a media campaign across multiple platforms, with digital and outdoor advertisements already being showcased in Washington D.C. This campaign will be localized into the nine states with the most cryptocurrency holders, including Arizona, California, Georgia, Illinois, New Hampshire, Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin.
Coinbase declares that without clear and comprehensive cryptocurrency laws, the U.S. is poised to lose its leadership in the space, as China is “embracing and advancing the use of technology, including digital assets, to project power.” Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong had spoken on this subject before, stating that the launch of the digital yuan, the Chinese central bank digital currency (CBDC), aimed to “directly challenge the U.S. dollar and its role in global commerce.”
In the same way, Coinbase alleges the impact of the current uncertainty in the cryptocurrency industry will be massive, as one million developer jobs and three million related non-technical jobs over the next seven years could move overseas, according to the latest Electric Capital developer report.
Coinbase has been affected by this lack of clarity, being the target of Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) enforcement actions. In June, the exchange was accused of providing unregistered brokerage and violating securities laws, a legal battle it is currently fighting in court.
What do you think about Coinbase’s call to action on cryptocurrency regulation? Tell us in the comment section below.
Presidential hopeful Vivek Ramaswamy is working on a crypto policy framework that he aims to finalize by Thanksgiving. The Republican criticized the regulation-by-enforcement approach of U.S. government agencies like the securities regulator under the administration of President Joe Biden and vowed to cut three-fourths of their personnel.
Vivek Ramaswamy, one of the contenders for the Republican Party's nomination for the 2024 U.S. presidential election, is drafting a crypto policy framework. The Bitcoin-friendly candidate wants to present his platform by Thanksgiving.
On Thursday, Ramaswamy unveiled his plan at the Messari Mainnet conference, catching the attention of U.S. media and exciting members of the crypto community. The right-wing politician said the blueprint is 75% ready, asking the audience for input.
-- Phil Rosen (@philrosenn) September 20, 2023
The Republican made the announcement during a discussion with Messari CEO Ryan Selkis who has been helping Ramaswamy with the draft and confirmed the progress made by his team so far. Selkis was quoted by DL News as stating:
A major presidential candidate actually having a fully baked position on crypto is something -- I hope people will take up Vivek and his campaign on actually submitting some feedback.
If Ramaswamy makes good on his promise, he is likely to become the first among Republican hopefuls for the White House to put out a comprehensive proposal to regulate crypto assets and related activities in the United States.
The GOP front-runner, former President Donald Trump, has previously made it clear he is "not a fan" of cryptocurrencies despite issuing a collection of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) with his image and declaring an Ethereum wallet with at least $1 million in its balance.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who is ahead of Vivek Ramaswamy in most polls, has promised to protect people's rights to use bitcoin and end the current government's "war on cryptocurrency" waged by regulators under the administration of Democratic President Joe Biden.
However, DeSantis is yet to elaborate on his crypto policy in case he is elected president. Both DeSantis and Ramaswamy have made statements against plans to issue a U.S. central bank digital currency (CBDC) describing it as a "threat to liberty" in America.
During the crypto event in New York, Ramaswamy, a 38-year-old entrepreneur with background in the pharmaceutical and biotech industries as well as finance, also criticized federal agencies for their "regulation by enforcement" attitude. He also vowed to lay off three-fourths of the staff of regulatory bodies like the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
Do you expect other presidential candidates to also prepare dedicated crypto policy frameworks? Tell us in the comments section below.
According to a new update from the Mt Gox trustee, Nobuaki Kobayashi, the repayment deadline for creditors has been pushed to next year. Kobayashi said discussions with banks, fund transfer service providers and designated cryptocurrency exchanges have caused delays, making it impossible to meet the original repayment deadline.
Nobuaki Kobayashi, the Mt Gox trustee in charge of the funds owed to the exchange’s creditors, updated the public on September 21, 2023. According to the trustee, because of lengthy discussions with specific payment providers, Kobayashi could not make the October 31, 2023 deadline. Because of this reason, the repayments will start next year.
“Therefore, with the permission of the Tokyo District Court, the rehabilitation trustee has changed the deadline of the base repayment, the early lump-sum repayment, and the intermediate repayment from October 31, 2023 (Japan Time) to October 31, 2024 (Japan Time), respectively,” the letter from Kobayashi details.
Mt Gox creditors have waited nine years for payments. Currently, they are owed 141,686 BTC, 142,846 BCH, and 69,776,002,441 yen. Though the delay has been extended, creditors who have completed their claims might receive a payment by year’s end.
“Rehabilitation creditors who have provided the necessary information to the rehabilitation trustee will see repayments made in sequence as early as the end of this year,” the letter stated. However, this schedule could change. Kobayashi also said that due to a “high volume of inquiries” regarding the process, the rehabilitation team might not respond promptly.
What do you think about the Mt Gox trustee delaying payments once again? Share your thoughts and opinions about this subject in the comments section below.
An ex-employee of Alameda Research has revealed that a trading blunder from the firm precipitated an astonishing 87% plunge in bitcoin’s (BTC) price on the Binance US exchange. This mishap, the insider disclosed, resulted in losses reaching the “order of tens of millions.”
A past associate of Sam Bankman-Fried’s crypto trading entity, Alameda Research, has been candid about his experiences within the firm. Aditya Baradwaj, on August 23, recounted that during his engineering tenure at Alameda, he saw his “entire life savings stolen”, pointing fingers at Bankman-Fried. Baradwaj shared that in his 18 months at Alameda, his personal and professional trajectory shifted dramatically.
Fast forward to September 20, Baradwaj delved into an incident from October 21, 2021. On that day, bitcoin’s (BTC) valuation flash crashed by a staggering 87% on Binance US, only to rebound shortly after. He recounted that an Alameda employee mistakenly placed an erroneous order, describing it as a “slip of a finger.”
“The trader was trying to sell a block of BTC in response to news, and sent out the order via our manual trading system,” Baradwaj stated. “What they missed was the decimal point was off by a few spaces. Rather than selling BTC at the current market price, they sold it for pennies on the dollar.”
News outlets started picking up too. Binance US – which was the epicenter of the flash crash – released a statement claiming that it had been caused by one of their ‘institutional traders’ who had a ‘bug in their trading algorithm.’ I guess Caroline had made some phone calls.
This isn’t Alameda’s maiden public faux pas or CEO Caroline Ellison‘s. As recently as December 2022, a whistle-blower from FTX informed Bitcoin.com News about Ellison’s margin account sinking by $1.3 billion in May 2022.
During a conversation with Jen Wieczner from New York Magazine, Sam Bankman-Fried opened up about a particular margin position that became untenably large. He emphasized that the sheer size of Alameda’s margin meant it “was not going to be closable in a liquid way in order to make good on its obligations.”
What do you think about the ex-Alameda employee’s memory of the bad bitcoin trade? Share your thoughts and opinions about this subject in the comments section below.
According to a report, Tether, the largest stablecoin issuer by market capitalization, has invested $420 million in 10,000 Nvidia H100 graphics processing units (GPUs). This news emerges during a time of surging demand for artificial intelligence (AI). It also comes after Iris Energy reported in August that its bitcoin mining operation acquired 248 Nvidia H100s.
On September 20, 2023, Forbes staff contributor Iain Martin reported that Tether used some of its capital to purchase AI-related GPUs. This acquisition followed Tether’s announcement that it was entering the bitcoin mining industry and holding BTC on its balance sheet.
Martin’s article indicated that Tether’s investment in the 10,000 Nvidia H100 GPUs was part of an agreement with the BTC miner Northern Data.
The arrangement will provide Tether with a 20% stake in Northern Data. Investing in the growing AI systems market could be quite profitable, said Northern Data’s CEO, Aroosh Thillainathan.
Thillainathan told Forbes that the deal was a “was a great opportunity to have 2% of the hottest GPU allocation available as everyone is running short on GPUs.” Martin’s report alleges the GPUs were bought through an Irish company called Damoon.
“Northern Data will take a 70% stake in return for shares equivalent to 20% of its ownership,” the report states. Bitcoin miners, captivated by the AI surge, have been exploring AI-related GPU hardware.
Miners such as Hive, Hut 8, and Iris Energy are among those reportedly making such ventures. In late August, Iris announced it invested $10 million to buy 248 Nvidia H100s to expand its operations.
Tether did announce the investment the following day on September 21, noting that it believes Northern Data is “set to become the biggest independent AI player in Europe.”
“We are excited about this investment into Northern Data Group as it represents a fresh venture into new technological frontiers,” Paolo Ardoino, Tether’s chief technology officer, wrote.
This investment underscores our commitment to responsible growth and innovation while preserving the strength and integrity of Tether tokens’s reserves.
Given the AI upswing, demand for Nvidia GPUs has skyrocketed, with the company anticipating shipping 550,000 units this year. Some reports suggest that these GPUs have fetched prices over $40,000 on Ebay.
The cost of these AI-centric GPUs can fluctuate based on their packaging and the quantity bought. Nvidia does not publicly list prices for its H100 SXM, H100 NVL, and GH200 Grace Hopper models.
What do you think about Tether’s investment? Share your thoughts and opinions about this subject in the comments section below.
According to statistics, Coinbase’s Layer two (L2) blockchain, built on Ethereum and using Optimism’s open-source OP Stack, has grown significantly in the past 41 days. Since August, when the platform had a total value locked (TVL) of $175 million, the figure has increased 111% to $370 million.
The L2 blockchain crafted by Coinbase is now the ninth-largest blockchain in terms of TVL by network. It has surpassed Solana in terms of TVL as defillama.com statistics show Base's TVL is $370.29 million while Solana's is $310.43 million.
Base is also above Cronos, Kava, Defichain, Bitcoin, Fusion, Pulsechain, and Cardano in terms of TVL size. Base's value locked is around 0.96% of the $38.14 billion TVL across the entire decentralized finance (defi) ecosystem.
Data from Dune Analytics indicates that since the L2 launch, Base has bridged a total of $426.81 million, with 143,467 ether making up 54.4% or $232.19 million of that value. Approximately 115,993,548 USDC stablecoins have been bridged, accounting for 27.2% of the assets moved to Base.
Additionally, 25,276 CBETH, Coinbase’s wrapped ether derivative token, represented 10% of the total value bridged to Base over time. Other cryptocurrencies bridged include DAI, CRVUSD, THALES, and CRV.
There are 123 protocols on the Base L2 chain, and Base boasts about 61,319 active users. The decentralized exchange, Aerodrome, holds the distinction of having the largest total value locked on Base at $114.2 million.
Friend.tech follows with a total value locked of $35.08 million, while Stargate, present on 10 other unique blockchains, has $24.6 million. Curve Finance, which also operates on Base, reported a total value locked of approximately $24.6 million as of Sept. 21.
In the realm of non-fungible tokens, 177,717 Base users have minted a total of 58,970,276 NFTs to date. Dappradar metrics indicate that dapp volumes on Base have settled $2.33 billion in value since the L2’s inception.
What do you think about Base’s growth over the past 41 days? Share your thoughts and opinions about this subject in the comments section below.