Nigeria has unfortunately become an ideal environment for Bitcoin adoption, with a massive population of 173 million people and a black-market premium of up to 70% on currency conversions. Under strict currency controls, Nigerians face less inflation than Syrians or Venezuelans, but more than other famously-troubled economies like Egypt at around 15% per annum. However, Nigeria hasn't yet reached Veneuzeula-level adoption. On a pro rata basis Venezuelans still use LocalBitcoins.com more than any other country; it is the #213 most-trafficked site on the Web in that country, while its global average ranking is #5,641.
A Case Study of Use of Bitcoin for Remittances in a Currency Crisis: Nigeria in 2016
"So Cash Dollars convert to the greatest amount of local Nigerian currency but there remains the problem, how does the expatriate Nigerian deliver physical cash dollars to his family in Nigeria? Using Bitcoins is a close number 2 in terms of the total return, but does not encounter the problem of physically transporting currency to the destination. And selling Bitcoins for NGN on LocalBitcoins.com is not a crime, whereas selling USD for NGN in the black market is a crime."
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Nuanced Analysis of LocalBitcoins Data Suggests Bitcoin is Working as Satoshi Intended
"The final story in this analysis is that, in totality, nearly six years of aggregate data paint the picture that Bitcoin has utility and that its promise is beginning to be realized for the types of people Satoshi said it would. As a final takeaway, consider that in the 4th quarter of 2018, as Bitcoin price and interest seemed to hit their doldrums, 23 countries on LBC had their best quarters ever. Almost all of these countries are in the developing world."
Germany Restricts Facebook’s Data Gathering
"But German regulators ruled that Facebook would now have to stop automatically collecting and combining that data and instead give German users a choice. They also prohibited the company from merging information from Facebook accounts with data from the users’ accounts on other Facebook-owned services, like Instagram and WhatsApp, without permission."
Will bitcoin’s price crash cut into its energy use?
"With higher costs and lower proceeds, miners should have stampeded out of the market. But in fact, relatively few have departed. Bitcoin’s daily energy consumption today is still 16 times its level of two years ago, and just 30% below its record high."
SEC Commissioner Says Bitcoin ETF Will Be Approved ‘Eventually’
"Robert J. Jackson Jr., in an interview published by government-focused news source Roll Call on Wednesday, said: 'Eventually, do I think someone will satisfy the standards that we’ve laid out there? I hope so, yes, and I think so.'"
Analysis: More than 85% of the current Monero Hashrate is ASICs and each machine is doing 128 kh/s
"With the given numbers and methology we can finally conclude that the current network hashrate likely consists of 85.2% ASICs (5400 ASIC machines) and some die-hard GPU miners and botnets."
It is time to worry about Germany’s economy
"Yet the German economy suddenly looks vulnerable. In the short term it faces a slowdown. It only narrowly avoided a recession at the end of 2018. Temporary factors, such as tighter emissions standards for cars, explain some of the weakness, but there is little sign of a bounceback. Manufacturing output probably fell in January. Businesses are losing confidence. Both the IMF and the finance ministry have slashed growth forecasts for 2019. In the longer term, changing patterns of trade and technology are moving against Germany’s world-beating manufacturers. In response, on February 5th Peter Altmaier, the economy minister, laid out plans to block unwanted foreign takeovers and to promote national and European champions."
Lightning Torch’s Bitcoin Payment Is Running a Worldwide Marathon
"The payment, slowly accumulating in value with each passing, is 2.8 ($96) million satoshis strong and still going. Dubbed the Lightning Torch, the payment has changed hands nearly 150 times across 38 countries. Since this article was published, it's even been to space after SatoshiLab/Trezor CTO Pavol Rusnak broadcast an invoice through Blockstream's satellite network to pick up the torch from Blockstream CSO Samson Mow."
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Pricing Power (pt. 2) – Intellectual Property
"No one has loyalty to a robo-advisor. There is no relationship here, beyond whatever halo effect is generated by the brand label on the machine. And believe me, halo effects are the first and immediate casualty of a market correction. If there’s not a human being there to hold your hand, filled with gravitas and concern and smart answers to your smart questions … you are outta there when a bear market hits. I don’t care how much you swore up and down that you were a long-term investor and trusted the process and yada, yada, yada. You are gone. Because there’s always another advisor to choose from. You’re still a long-term investor. Just with a new advisor."
CVE-2018–20587 Advisory and Full Disclosure (Bitcoin Core & Knots, on multiuser systems)
"CVE-2018–20587 is an Incorrect Access Control vulnerability that affects all currently released versions of Bitcoin Core, including the latest 0.17.1 (and probably future releases too), as well as Bitcoin Knots prior to 0.17.1.knots20181229."