MasterCard has outlined its interest in creating a system by which nodes can connect with and verify the contents of a particular blockchain. The payment giant filed a patent on October 24, 2016, to speed up the activation of new nodes in a blockchain. The patent application has been published by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) on April 26.
The patent proposes a technical solution for faster navigation, in which “fast track flags” would be included in block headers so that new nodes could scan and verify the blockchain at greater speed: ”A node in the blockchain network […] may quickly navigate the blockchain by identifying blocks that have activated fast track flags. For verification, the node may identify the earlier fast-track block (e.g., based on timestamp) and hash that block […] and then verify that the fast track reference in the more recent fast-track block is the same as the hash of the earlier fast-track block”
The patent application explains the difficulty encountered by new nodes, “a blockchain may store thousands, millions, or even billions of transaction records over time in a vast number of different blocks.” Although, this may be part of its immutable nature, this also means the blockchain could “contain thousands, millions, or billions of blocks, each of which must be verified by the new node prior to the generation and addition of new blocks to the blockchain.”
This is not the first time that MasterCard Labs will be filing for a patent as it has filed for over 30 “patents related to blockchain tech and cryptocurrency” to date. but, this latest patent outlines the use of software specifically configured to perform querying, hashing, and signatory operations, that would further enhance system efficiency.
What do you think of MasterCards latest patent? Let us know your opinion in the comments section below.
1Images courtesy of BC Focus
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Tether Prints Another 100M USDT On The Ethereum Blockchain
Tether, the company behind the cryptocurrency with a value meant to mirror the value of the U.S. dollar known as Tether Dollars (USDT), has just printed another 100m USDT on the blockchain. Within the course of last week, Tether has emitted a total amount of $250m USDT into the Ethereum blockchain, remarkably stirring the air about its claim of being a stablecoin. Tether has been known as a very controversial cryptocurrency in the cryptospace.
Since the beginning of this year, regular issuances of large amounts of the USDT have been routine for Tether. There have been a record of about 10 prints of $20 million to $150 million so far this year, one occurring (roughly) every two and a half weeks. Before that, the last print–which was for $30 million–occurred on January 29th, 2018.
Tether’s recent printing of the $100 million USDT made its market capitalisation to catapult from $2.8 billion from just a few months back to about a grand total of $3.5 billion.
Although Tether has printed a whooping figure of USDT, most of the coins have not been put into circulation as confirmed by Paolo Ardoino and the company’s official transparency page.
Paolo Ardoino is the CTO of Bitfinex. According to him the Tether that has just been emitted in the blockchain will not be issued quite yet. It has not been authorized but will become a part of the circulation once the demand will be higher than the supply. He makes this utterance in reference to the USDT printing that occured on June 11th. In his words, the new USDT is “authorized but not issued”; in other words, it “was created in the treasury wallet that will be used to fulfill future issuance requests.”
Quite similar to Paolo’s view or rather taken as a confirmation of what he says, Tether’s official transparency page avers that $99.8 million USDT is “authorized but not issued” on the Ethereum blockchain yet.
Block.one Offers Early Backers a 6567% ROI Buyout Option
Block.one, the Cayman Islands-registered firm which is behind the world’s largest ICO till date, $4 billion EOS software has recently sent out an email to early backers stating its intention to buy back some portion of its shares giving them a whopping 6567% ROI in less than 3 years according to a Bloomberg report.
In July of 2018, billionaire investor Peter Thiel invested into Block.one joining the like of Alan Howard and Louis Baycon who were early backers of the startup since 2017. These investors are faced with the mouthwatering option of either liquidating their shares of the company and cashing out huge gains or remaining with them.
Block.one in a March 19 e-mail to shareholders seeks to rein in external ownership of its equity by offering a $1,500 per share as compared to the $22 per share seed round. When asked about this move, a spokeswoman of the company merely said the company intends to use proceeds it generated from token sales to expand its resources while building its business strong clearly dodging the main question asked.
According to an email circulated to its investors, by February 2019, Block.one was valued at $3 billion as compared to $40 million during its seed round in 2017. And unaware to most of the public, it holds as much as $2.2 billion in U.S. government bonds as compared to the jurisdiction it is registered in the Cayman Islands.
Block.one had faced serious criticisms from industry stakeholders with many labeling it a shady enterprise that certainly didn’t need as much as $4 billion to launch a decentralized software. One of such critics is Richard Burton, San Francisco-based founder of Balance.io, a blockchain company that designs applications for open source financial products, he has once said
They designed a very clever mechanism to hoover up as much capital as possible,
He continued by saying,
Bitcoin was started on a shoestring and Ethereum raised just a few million dollars, which goes to show you don’t need anything like the money Block.one raised to launch and scale a successful network. It should be beholden on them to explain why they needed that much and what they are doing with it.
Brendan Blumer, the young CEO of Block.one however disagrees with such critics as he made his stance known in a Bloomberg interview in November of 2018, saying
too much transparency into everything that we are doing on an ongoing basis can actually take away a lot of the competitive advantage when we’re trying to put out new types of technology
clearly knocking off the argument of critics who demand squeaky clean transparency after raising so many funds.
When asked if they were willing to take up the buyback offer, Bacon and Howard declined to comment while Thiel ignored numerous messages sent to him privately, sources reported. On the other hand, early backer, Christian Angermayer made his stance known. He had this to say,
Block.one is one of the most promising and best-positioned companies in the blockchain industry, and its success story is just beginning,
Recall that Mike Novogratz had earlier liquidated his stakes in the firm and realizing as much as 123% in returns valued at up to $71.2 million in the transaction.
Although Block.one which holds up to 140,000 units of bitcoin as assets, cited extreme volatility as a major factor that impacted its valuation clearly halving its holdings valued at around $1 billion, which has since been recovered in the recent bitcoin really, it is looking promising and sure has the likes of Peter Thiel happy at any of the option it decides to pursue.
Trouble Looming for Bitcoin with Stocks Plunge?
Could bitcoin and other “risk-on” assets be open to a possible plunge alongside the traditional stock market?
With what is happening in the stock market, inferences could easily be drawn that social media (tweets particularly), not only affect the traditional markets but also has real-time effects on digital assets. With a recent revelation from the United States president-Donald Trump, where he makes plans to increase the tariffs on Chinese-made commodities from 10% to 25% in a few days time, global assets like stocks and bitcoin BTC, recorded a minus in the market.
For 10 months, China has been paying Tariffs to the USA of 25% on 50 Billion Dollars of High Tech, and 10% on 200 Billion Dollars of other goods. These payments are partially responsible for our great economic results. The 10% will go up to 25% on Friday. 325 Billions Dollars….
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 5, 2019
Bitcoin Records Slight Dip with Trumps Chinese Tariff Statements.
While many will argue that President Trump’s intentions had a good possible economic result, the stock market took the news quite badly. As at 1 pm today, Futures for the S&p 500 were 1.75% down and this would invariably mean an open red. More so, as of the time of compiling this article, there exists a whopping drop for the SSE Composite Index of about 5.35%, which means the loss of billions of dollars in less than 24 hours.
Just as we mentioned earlier, bitcoin also recorded some losses alongside its counterparts in the traditional exchanges. this was pointed out by a crypto trader who saw this trend as the Monday Asian market opened. In this trading path, BTC fell in indicating a negative reaction to the tariff threat of the U.S. President.
If we argue that BTC price loss could be coincidental, we might also need to take a look at a similar situation where BTC lost almost the same value to the Hang Sang withing the same time frame. This is yet another proof to show that though BTC is sadly still vulnerable, it also now responds to market forces.
Market participants continue to view Bitcoin as a risk-on asset.
Sunday evening's sell-off occurred simultaneously with the Hang Seng's precipitous 3.4% drop at the open following Trump's new tariff salvo. pic.twitter.com/Oa9RiVXuRg
— Light (@LightCrypto) May 6, 2019
More insights show that cryptocurrencies are risk-on and this means that investors in these areas are particularly interested in markets trending higher.
Crypto is a risk asset. Global capital flows matter. pic.twitter.com/giZ186F4kc
— Travis Kling (@Travis_Kling) April 30, 2019
Bitcoin To Become Safe Heaven As Digital Gold
From all the information provided above, it is clear that bitcoin maybe conforming to traditional markets’ risk-on assets after all.
Many might not have heard already, but bitcoin, alongside all other cryptocurrencies, have been disregarded an in fact touted as an uncorrelated asset. Check this out in the CNBC interview a few months ago where Anthony Pompliano of Morgan Creek mentioned that the correlation between BTC and the S&P (SPX) was practically non-existent. A confirmation was put forth by Three Arrows Capital’s Su Zhu, showing that given “high prices and low prices, high volatility and low volatility, the correlation between the aforementioned assets is still near-zero.
All of the correlations confirmed this Monday, have gone to validate the John Normand theory that gold remains a better safe haven or hedge against downturns than Bitcoin. John is the Head of JP Morgans’s cross-asset management arm.
According to optimists, Max Keiser’s explanation of a possible break-even for the digital asset class is a thread strong enough to hold onto. Max is of the opinion that BTC will eventually become a “risk-off” asset, hinting at a few characteristics that make it a form tradeable money.
Amongst many reasons for his belief are that BTC is a non-sovereign, decentralized, censorship-resistant and easily- transferable asset that is deliberately scarce and is not controlled by the whims of central banks and the various existing financial institutions.
The market and consumers alike may need a bit of a nudge in the right direction to truly comprehend this fact, and this is predicted to come from the impending financial crisis which experts say is much around the corner.
Have your say in our comments section below.
Jaguar Land Rover To Reward Customers Using IOTA Cryptocurrency
Jaguar automobiles have ventured into the world of Blockchain Technology seeking ways to better reward their customers, while also collecting feedback data for product improvement.
The areas where blockchain technology can be applied is becoming increasingly alarming and at the same time interesting. It is gaining value in areas of our private life on a daily basis.
Who would have thought that a technology that came to us only as a means of substitute money as we previously called it, would now be considered for mainstream Adoption and Integration in all sectors of our economy from supply chains to economics, automotive and also investment fields?
All these industries are not lacking in ways to deploy and implement the use of blockchain in application development all for the sole purpose of improving existing systems.
In a publication released by the International Business Times, Jaguar Land Rover seems to be currently testing new software that allows users of the automobile to earn digital assets (cryptocurrency) whenever the users give feedback on the issue of the cars’ performance in particular places. in other words, users get rewarded for providing data.
In line with this development, IOTA seems to be the cryptocurrency with which the app will be built. The automobile giant believes that this strategy is perfect for obtaining real-live information, and this will, in turn, help them guide against avoidable mechanism-failures and prevent accident for users of the Jaguar automobile.
IOTA wants to enable interoperability with all these different players. So there is no Jaguar coin, no BMW coin, but one Universal Token for this machine economy.
-Dominik Schiener, IOTA Foundation Co-Founder and Co-Chairman.
Speaking further, Schiener said IOTA is designed to easily solve most of the inefficiencies facing other blockchains particularly because he believes IOTA operates on top the Distributed Ledger Tech (DLT) called Tangle which is expected to connect IoT with Web 3.0.
Blockchain adoption has left its speculative days for good and is being explored by many more companies that could have been imagined. he benefits of the blockchain technology are too numerous and attractive to be turned down. It offers customers a reward system that can, in turn, build and attract customer loyalty to a specific brand.
— Rafael Presa (@RafaelPresa) May 2, 2019
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