Report on BTC hashrate centralization reveals a behavioral quirk common amongst miners
Amongst the misconceptions about mining is that miners sell their yield for fiat currency in short intervals, after days or weeks. In fact, miners speculate once equipment reaches a certain age (see report below). "... Large mining companies are more prone to hold onto their mining machines during bearish market turns, as the amount they’ve invested in their operation justifies it. This, it claims, gives them a competitive advantage later on, as they mine at a loss coins that gains value in the long run."
- Mining Oligopoly: Six Pools Control 75% of Bitcoin's Hashrate, Data Shows
"ChainDD’s DD Think Tank noted that as of January 21, six mining pools – BTC.com, Antpool, SlushPool, ViaBTC, and F2Pool, had 74.48% of the BTC network’s hashrate. These pools, with the exception of SlushPool, are based in China. Out of these three are related to Bitmain 'directly or indirectly.' These are BTC.com, which had over 21% of the network’s hashrate, Antpool (13.9%), and ViaBTC (10.51%), which received investments from the firm."
SEC’s ‘Crypto Mom’ Sees No Need for National Blockchain Policy
"'People think ‘oh wouldn’t it be great if we coordinated this from the government’ and that has gotten us into lots of problems in the past,' Peirce said, adding: We need to have clear regulatory guidelines, that’s something I think you’ve been very forthright in calling for, which I think is really important. We do need to let people know where they stand, but then within that we need to let people do what they want to do and try not to have too much government partnership with the private sector.' The government should just set up those guidelines and 'let the innovation happen on its own,' she added."
US tech firms fear China could be spying on them using power cords, report says
"Fearing that China could be spying on them using power cords and plugs, several U.S. technology companies have asked their Taiwanese suppliers to shift production of some components out of the mainland, Nikkei Asian Review reported on Friday. The report cited unnamed executives from two Taiwanese companies: Lite-On Technology, a manufacturer of electronic parts, and Quanta Computer, a supplier of servers and data centers. Lite-On’s clients include Dell EMC, Hewlett-Packard and IBM, while Quanta counts Google and Facebook among its customers, according to Nikkei."
Fidelity Crypto Chief Says Hard Fork May Delay Firm’s Support for Ethereum
"The digital asset trading and custody branch of Fidelity Investments, which went live this quarter, has developed an internal framework for evaluating any cryptocurrencies that may be added in the future, according to FDAS president Tom Jessop. While Jessop has previously said FDAS might look to add ether and other cryptocurrencies, he told CoinDesk Thursday that the process to do so may not be cut-and-dried. ... 'We’d love to have support [for] ether but you know you have a hard fork coming up and some upgrades, so I think we’re trying to see how those things work out before we make a decision to put them on the platform.'"
Fidelity’s bitcoin custody business is live: a conversation with Fidelity Digital Assets head Tom Jessop
"Last October Tom Jessop stepped on stage at an industry conference in New York to debut to the world Fidelity’s ambitions to launch a new crypto trading and custody business, Fidelity Digital Assets. 'We built a lot of the capabilities underlying this platform months and years ago,' Jessop, who leads the business, said at the time. Now, part of the platform is live — with five clients. To start, the firm is offering bitcoin custody for crypto native firms, Jessop told The Block in an interview at the Chamber of Digital Commerce’s DC Blockchain Summit in the nation’s capital."
Swissquote Bank Launching ‘Nuke Proof’ Crypto Custody
"Crypto Storage AG offers a proprietary solution for managing cryptocurrency private keys using “highest grade hardware security modules” (HSMs), according to information on its website. 'Our HSMs are the same as those built for the Swiss National Bank and that nothing is outsourced or could allow for a backdoor to be built in,' Crypto Storage CEO Stijn Vander Straeten told CoinDesk. He added: 'Our server racks are stored in a former military bunker in the Swiss Alps which is nuke proof. So, yes, we care about security.'"
Mark Zuckerberg Wants Facebook to Emulate WeChat. Can It?
"People also use WeChat Pay to transfer money and to buy personal finance products. More than 100 million customers have purchased WeChat’s personal finance products, which managed over 500 billion yuan, or $74 billion, by the end of last September, Tencent has said. Its users can buy everything from bonds and insurance to money market funds through the app. Facebook lacks such a payments system. So to be more like WeChat, the Silicon Valley company could have to acquire banking and payment licenses in many countries. One sign that Facebook has been thinking about payments is its work on a new crypto coin that is meant to let people send money to contacts on their messaging systems."
Ethereum Creator Vitalik Buterin Proposes Wallet Fee to Fund Developers
"'I propose we consider supporting a community norm that client [and] wallet [developers] can [and] should charge a 1 gwei/gas fee for [transactions] sent through their wallet,' tweeted Buterin Friday. ... 'At the cost of only increasing average user gas costs by [roughly] 7 percent, it would raise up to [$2 million per year] in sustainable, non-institutionally biased, market-based funding for client/wallet developers. For reference, that would cover all [Ethereum Foundation] grants to date … with room to spare.'"
Mobile Voting is coming to Denver Municipal Elections
"Tusk Philanthropies (TP) announced today that Denver is the latest jurisdiction to implement a mobile voting pilot in its May municipal election. The pilot will offer blockchain-based mobile voting to active-duty military, their eligible dependents and overseas voters using their smartphones during the Denver municipal elections. This marks the second jurisdiction nationwide to partner with Tusk Philanthropies on their national efforts to expand mobile voting. In 2018, Tusk Philanthropies partnered with West Virginia to launch a secure military mobile voting application for the May and November Primary and General elections, marking the first time a state has offered blockchain-based mobile voting in a federal election."
Warren Calls for Breakup of Tech Companies Like Amazon, Facebook
"'Today’s big tech companies have too much power -- too much power over our economy, our society, and our democracy,' Warren wrote. 'They’ve bulldozed competition, used our private information for profit, and tilted the playing field against everyone else. And in the process, they have hurt small businesses and stifled innovation.'"
How I “hacked” the MIT Technology Review website (+many more) to gain unlimited online access to all the stories
"Someone might think that this kind of vulnerability is not that serious, but that is not quite true in my opinion. First of all, it shows a lack of basic 'best practices' and indicates that more mistakes may be found in the website's implementation. Another important aspect is the feature’s importance. In this case, for example, to gain access to the feature of 'unlimited online access to articles' you need to purchase a subscription. Depending on the website’s business plan this might be an important source of revenue (that is acquired by offering unlimited online access as a service)."