Bitcoin paper

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apple co-founder steve wozniak said that “only bitcoin is pure digital gold” in an interview june 4, reaffirming his belief in the cryptocurrency despite having sold most of his holdings.

speaking to cnbc at the ongoing money20/20 conference in amsterdam, the veteran developer said he “bought into” comments from twitter ceo jack dorsey about bitcoin becoming the “single currency” of both the internet and the world. dorsey spoke at two events in march and may, where he predicted that bitcoin would become the international currency of choice by 2028.

“i buy into what jack dorsey says, not that i necessarily believe it's going to happen, but because i want it to be that way, that is so pure thinking,” wozniak explained.

wozniak reiterated that he is “not an investor,” having originally purchased bitcoin at $700 to experiment with its use as a means of payment. “i have one bitcoin and two ether,” he told cnbc. nonetheless, for wozniak, bitcoin represents a separate class of crypto asset to all others:

“only bitcoin is pure digital gold… and i totally buy into that. all the others tend to give up some of the aspects of bitcoin. for example, being totally decentralized and having no central control. that's the first one they have to give up to try to have a business model.”

as prices of both bitcoin and major altcoins remain suppressed in june, bitcoin having lost around 20% last month, some sources claim that current conditions present a good opportunity for buyers.
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internet giant baidu unveils energy-efficient ‘super chain’ blockchain protocolnews
chinese internet giant baidu has announced the next step in its blockchain integration in the form of a protocol aimed at reducing mining energy consumption, according to a report by china news weekly today, june 3.

dubbed ‘super chain,’ chief scientist at baidu’s blockchain division xiao wei revealed the protocol at a local conference over the weekend.
the move forms the latest in a series of increasingly direct experiments with cryptocurrency for baidu, which launched its blockchain-as-a-service (baas) solution in january this year.
super chain can “insert and remove consensus mechanisms to solve the current energy consumption problem,” wei explained, and is also “compatible with the development system of bitcoin and ethereum.”
baidu has already released one blockchain-based product since the baas rollout, this coming in the form of a digital image property rights management platform in april.
as china’s big business gets to grips with blockchain and even the president champions its potential, authorities are planning hard-and-fast regulations for the industry. last month, beijing announced ‘standards’ would be in place by the end of 2019.
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draft legislation that would favorably regulate blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies has received unanimous support in the spanish congress, europa press reported yesterday, may 30.

the draft initiative, agreed upon with the majority parliamentary party partido popular (people’s party), won the support of all parties present at the house finance and public function committee meeting on wednesday.
the document calls for a review of regulations pertaining to cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin (btc), as well as to blockchain, proposing to introduce the technology to the spanish market through “controlled testing environments,” commonly referred to as ‘regulatory sandboxes.’
the congress has agreed to promote blockchain as a cost-efficient and disintermediated system for payments and transfers, advocating the need to foster fintech startups in particular.
the draft further raises the need for ‘proportionate mechanisms’ to ensure that all entities implementing the new technology will comply with information disclosure obligations to the spanish treasury and duly file their tax returns. it also highlights potential pitfalls associated with “high-risk” financial assets, claiming that “adequate dissemination of information” is crucial to protect investors.
to this end, the draft proposes that the government cooperate with the national securities market commission (cnmv) and the bank of spain to coordinate a common regulatory position regarding crypto in the broader european context.
a week ago, barcelona revealed it would launch a specialized blockchain space in the city’s tech hub to foster growth and innovation in the local digital ecosystem. in february, the european commission announced the launch of a major blockchain observatory and forum aiming to “unite” the eu economy around the new technology.
while rallying around blockchain, the eu regulatory mood towards cryptocurrencies has so far been more cautious, with the recent ratification of anti-money-laundering (aml) legislative measures that address the risks associated with cryptocurrencies. major europe-based crypto exchanges have recently called on eu regulators to provide more clarity and transparency for the crypto markets.
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swiss airport ground handling and cargo company swissport is launching a blockchain pilot program for its cargo handling business, air cargo news reported may 29. the company is launching a pilot program in cooperation with olam, a non-profit organization aiming to develop an open source platform for supply chain partners.

hendrik leyssens, head of global cargo operations at swissport, said that blockchain could speed up transactions, improve security, and help reduce operational costs. he added:

“thinking beyond traditional messaging, blockchain could eventually become the new standard allowing us to overcome the chronic lack of transparency, which is typical for fragmented supply chains.”

in addition to the cargo handling, swissport will also apply its blockchain pilot program to its passenger services business by partnering with winding tree, a blockchain-based travel distribution platform. the partnership will initially focus on applying blockchain technology to the distribution of classic travel services to independent travelers, such as airport lounge access. florian eggenschwiler, who supervises swissport’s innovation unit, said:

“we expect to see lasting benefits from this technology for fragmented global industries like aviation services and supply chain. it will likely change how service providers, clients and partners will transact with each other. we want to get familiar with such technologies early in the innovation cycle and partner with technology leaders to explore its potential in our business for a variety of use cases.”

blockchain has been gaining traction in the supply chain and logistics industry in the past months. recently, a us transport giant norfolk southern corp. announced it is joining the blockchain in transport alliance (bita), which aims to popularize and develop blockchain applications in the transport and logistics industries.

walmart announced in april that it is ready to use blockchain technology in its live food business, which will help the company to reduce waste, as well as improve contamination management and transparency.
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actor and tech investor ashton kutcher has donated $4 mln in ripple (xrp) to ellen degeneres’ wildlife fund live during the ellen degeneres show thursday, may 25.

kutcher and guy oseary - his business partner as well as manager to madonna, u2, and amy schumer among others - gave ellen the large donation on behalf of ripple. kutcher had previously been known for his interest in cryptocurrency, as he and oseary run venture fund a-grade investments, which has invested in bitpay, and sound ventures, which has invested in ripple.
kutcher, who surprised ellen with the donation, noted that since xrp was a cryptocurrency, they could do away with the “big giant check thing:”
“we can actually transfer [the donation] into rwandan francs right now, right here, and all we have to do is push this button and it’s in your account.”
ellen degeneres has spoken about cryptocurrency on her show in the past, when she attempted to explain bitcoin (btc) to her viewers by comparing it to a goat that “doesn’t exist except for on that internet:”
“nobody knows how it works. nobody. everybody’s talking about bitcoin and nobody understands it. it’s like a plot twist in a confusing movie.”
ripple is up almost 2 percent over a 24 hour period, trading at around $0.62 to press time according to data from coinmarketcap.
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the controversial stablecoin tether generated $250 million worth of new usdt tokens on may 18, according to omni explorer.

tether is the company that issues the so-called stablecoins usdt, which it claims are backed at 1:1 ratio by us dollars. tether has been criticized for its lack of transparency after it broke ties with auditing firm friedman llp before an official audit could be conducted.
with a near monopoly on stablecoins, the total supply of tether tokens has now risen to 2.5 bln, and some critics find it hard to believe that all of those tokens are backed by us dollars.
one such critic is anonymous blogger bitfinex’ed, who has pointed out the correlation of tether coin generation with price increases of mainstream cryptocurrencies like bitcoin and ethereum. according to cointelegraph’s btc and eth price indices, the price of bitcoin increased approximately by $120 and ethereum by $10 within an hour of the issuing of the $250 million worth of new tether tokens.
bitfinex, one of the largest exchanges for cryptocurrencies, is a sister company of tether and has threatened legal action against critics such as bitfinex’ed for questioning tether’s 1:1 ratio with usd, a fact still unproven in the absence of an audit.
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recently hacked japanese crypto exchange coincheck will end trading for four privacy-oriented cryptocurrencies, monero (xmr), zcash (zec), dash (dash), and augur (rep), cointelegraph japan reported may 18.

following reports from back in march, the exchange has now officially confirmed the removal of the four anonymity-focused coins will come into effect june 18. according to coincheck’s blog, the exchange will remove the four cryptocurrencies to comply with counter-terrorist financing (cft) and anti-money laundering (aml) measures recently issued by japan’s financial regulator, the financial services agency (fsa).
the fsa has been especially active in regulating domestic crypto exchanges, specifically around customer protection, since coincheck lost $532 mln in nem in a major hack in january of this year.
as part of its efforts, the fsa has stated that local, officially registered exchanges will face restrictions on the trading of privacy-focused altcoins, since they are more difficult to trace than cryptocurrencies like bitcoin (btc).
as friday’s official statement from the exchange says, the targeted cryptocurrencies will be sold at market price and converted to japanese yen.
earlier this week, monex inc, the company that recently acquired coincheck, revealed plans to expand the exchange to the u.s., claiming that the u.s. and europe are more advanced than japan in terms of regulatory clarity and “attracting institutional investors” to crypto.
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kazakhstan’s president nursultan nazarbayev has called for global cooperation for cryptocurrency regulation, local news outlet azernews reported may 17.

speaking at the plenary session of the global challenges summit 2018, nazarbayev stated that “most countries are actively exploring the possibility of adapting cryptocurrency to the current configuration of financial systems.” he then continued with a comment on the fragmented nature of crypto regulation globally:
“at the same time, we see completely separate actions of states in this issue. and these disparate actions will lead to inefficiency. it is necessary to start developing common rules.”
kazakhstan has already proven its interest in the cryptocurrency sector. a study released by search engine yandex in march shows that kazakhstanis have been more frequently searching for cryptocurrency-related terms this year, as compared to 2018.
last fall, kazakhstan’s government-supported astana international finance center (aifc) announced they had signed a deal of cooperation with maltese firm exante, with the goal of developing the kazakh digital asset market. also in the fall, the blockchain and cryptocurrency association in kazakhstan had applied for state licensing to become a legal entity and begin official activities.