Scaling Bitcoin 2017: Science Is Central in Stanford (and the Politics Ignored)

Stanford University hosted the fourth edition of the Scaling Bitcoin conference over the weekend of November 4–5: “Scaling Bitcoin 2017: Scaling the Edge.”The annual conference, sometimes referred to as a “workshop,” has in its short history grown i…

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NextBlock CEO Alex Tapscott Cancels Plans to Go Public and Will Return Money to Investors

Alex Tapscott, CEO of NextBlock Global, a venture capital company investing in blockchain technologies, announced in a press release yesterday that he is canceling their plans to go public through a reverse takeover (RTO) of Nobelium Tech Corp., a c…

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Introducing a Programming Language so Simple, It “Fits on a T-shirt”

Blockstream is introducing Simplicity, a new programming language for blockchain-based smart contracts, intended for inclusion in Blockstream’s sidechains and eventually in Bitcoin. The new language was presented by its creator, Russell O’Connor, In…

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Funding the Blockchain Future of the Digital Media Industry

BTC Media, the largest media group in the blockchain and cryptocurrency space, announced the launch of BTC Labs, a venture studio focusing on launching and incubating blockchain applications for the digital media industry on September 25, 2017.  BTC Labs, in turn, introduced Storyboard Ventures, a venture financing arm of the organization, seeded with $2 million to fund forward-thinking and promising media projects. According to BTC Media, Storyboard Ventures will be vigorously searching for those entrepreneurs who are “building use cases that leverage decentralization to disrupt longstanding inefficiencies” within the digital media industry.“The internet drastically altered how we consume and distribute information, but the media industry has failed to adapt its underlying business model,” Jeremy Kandah, Storyboard Venture’s Portfolio Manager, said in a statement. “Blockchain technology is revolutionizing the way that digital information is transacted, creating a host of new monetization models and connecting content creators directly with consumers. Storyboard Ventures will support the projects and pioneers shaping this media landscape of the future.”On November 1, 2017, BTC Labs announced their second project, the MAD Network, a decentralized ecosystem for the ad tech industry designed to return lost value to advertisers and publishers. The MAD Network will become the programmatic advertising platform within BTC Labs’ decentralized media suite, a collection of blockchain-based tools for the media industry. BTC Labs is working closely with the MAD Network to develop its technical architecture, as well as advising them on their upcoming token sale, which will take place on November 30th, 2017.“The MAD Network is one example of the suite of decentralized media applications that BTC Labs will support through research, development and funding,” Tyler Evans, CEO of BTC Labs, said to Bitcoin Magazine. “It is a perfect use case for distributed ledger technology because it takes the value that is traditionally captured by middlemen and brokers in the digital advertising ecosystem and instead, redistributes that value to the stakeholders in the network.”“BTC Labs has been instrumental in the development of the MAD Network,” Adam Helfgott, Project Lead at the MAD Network, said. “We’ve been able to leverage their breadth of expertise and knowledge in the blockchain space to help formulate our development plan and go-to-market strategy.”The first project backed by the venture studio was Po.et, a protocol utilizing and implementing blockchain technology and timestamped metadata to accelerate solutions for the publishing industry. BTC Labs developed the core architecture behind Po.et and helped guide the organization through a successful token sale process. As Bitcoin Magazine is a brand of BTC Media, all content of the publication is verified via Po.et.Blockchain technology has allowed for increased innovation, resulting in more equitable ways of sharing data and exchangin value. These new benefits of blockchain technology can be also implemented within the media industry to tackle numerous issues, including intellectual property registration, content monetization, licensing, ticketing and ad-tech. BTC Labs will focus on both the blockchain and media industries with an aim to support disruptive, open-sourced and decentralized networks. It recognizes that, in a decentralized network, every stakeholder can retain the fair value of their work. Thus, the innovation studio will develop decentralized networks to empower not just content creators but also brands and consumers.Disclaimer: BTC Inc. is the parent company of BTC Media and Bitcoin Magazine.The post Funding the Blockchain Future of the Digital Media Industry appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.

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Qchain Charts New Native Advertising Roadmap

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 …

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Setting Bitcoin’s Price Mechanism: CME Group to Launch BTC Futures

On the anniversary of the publication of Satoshi Nakamoto’s Bitcoin white paper, the price of Bitcoin reached a new all-time high, following the news that CME Group, one of the world’s largest derivatives exchanges, will launch a Bitcoin futures product on November 14, 2017.Futures or derivatives in general are understood by their relationship to risk. They are investment products that can be bought and sold in the future based on being pinned to a fixed price through a contractual agreement. Basing futures off another fixed price allows investors to avoid financial risk or assume it for profit during price fluctuations.Like most futures, CME’s Bitcoin futures product will be cash-settled, based on the CME CF Bitcoin Reference Rate (BRR). According to CME, the BRR is a standardized reference rate, which — along with a bitcoin spot price index, the CME CF Bitcoin Real Time Index (BRTI) — “accelerat[es] the professionalization of bitcoin trading.” Like most other financial institutions exploring cryptocurrency, CME is launching a Bitcoin futures product to both satisfy client interests and investigate the rewards of testing blockchain technology’s “transparency, price discovery and risk transfer capabilities,” as noted by Group Chairman and Chief Executive Terry Duffy.The BRR and BRTI are two tools that have become consistent and reliable price references for bitcoin globally. The BRR has been calculated and published by CME and Crypto Facilities Ltd. since November 2016. Designed according to the IOSCO Principles of Financial Benchmarks, the BRR computes price by compiling and calculating data from a number of Bitcoin exchanges including Bitstamp, GDAX, itBit and Kraken.The implications of this Bitcoin futures product launch are far-reaching. It signifies both mainstream network adoption and a reduction in price volatility. As an investment product, it can readily fit into the stock portfolio of a traditional investor.The post Setting Bitcoin’s Price Mechanism: CME Group to Launch BTC Futures appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.

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Moody’s: Threat of Blockchain and Cryptocurrencies Is Distant but Inevitable

A report titled “Consumer Digital Payments — US,” which was released on October 11 by Moody’s analyst Stephen Sohn and team, reassures the payments sector that blockchain technology is a distant threat. Moody’s thinks that blockchain technology is a disruptor and poses a potential long-term competitive threat to the payments sector. The group highlights a number of “tech-enabled entrants” that are transforming the electronic payments landscape in the U.S.Extract from the Moody’s report:   “Providers that are considering adopting blockchain technology, which was originally created as a platform for the Bitcoin ‘cryptocurrency,’ may pose another potential threat to all of the current payment constituents. Blockchain is a chain of blocks of encrypted information that form a database or ‘ledger,’ which may eventually lessen the need for the intermediary platforms that currently approve, clear, and settle payments.While very limited in current mainstream payments, the bitcoin ‘cryptocurrency’ was developed as an alternative payment system that eliminates the need for a centralized institution to approve payment transactions. Despite its potential, blockchain technology is untested in large volumes, where authorizations need to be processed in fractions of a second. If the technology were ever to prove promising for payments, we would expect the incumbents to adopt it.”Blockchain Will Transform and Benefit Financial Services In a separate report released by Moody’s associate managing director, Sean Jones, and team in April this year, the group acknowledged that blockchain technology has a range of “potential applications and benefits” beyond Bitcoin.Jones writes that the technology is expected to transform the clearing and settlement industry, and highlights that the blockchain can also “promote transaction transparency, enhance data security and reduce the risk of a single point of failure.” As blockchain technology is implemented, it is expected that post-trade processes will be transformed. However, there are a number of hurdles to overcome before the economics of investments in blockchain tech are seen as a positive. These include technical issues related to scalability and interoperability, which will need to be addressed, and agreement on industry standards and terms of collaboration will be vital. Moody’s highlights that the stance taken by regulators in financial services is generally supportive, but there is no definitive view on the ultimate treatment of the technology.The post Moody’s: Threat of Blockchain and Cryptocurrencies Is Distant but Inevitable appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.

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