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Mysterious Bitcoin miner shows off oldest signature dated Jan. 2009

Answering the question ‘Who has/had the oldest mined Bitcoin?’ an anonymous member shared a signature dating back to January 2009, just a week after Bitcoin came into existence.

Online forums are integral to the Bitcoin origin story, where Satoshi Nakamoto and early contributors collaborated to discuss and create a disruptive financial system from scratch. One of the oldest Bitcoin forums — bitcointalk.org — still preserves historical discussions around creating the Bitcoin (BTC) logo and the payment system.

A curious member of the bitcointalk.org forum recently sought to identify Bitcoin miners from the early days. To their surprise, an anonymous member shared a signature dating back to January 2009, just a week after Bitcoin came into existence.

The oldest known Bitcoin signature shared by OneSignature. Source: bitcointalk.org

“Maybe OP is inviting Satoshi?” questioned another member after confirming the legitimacy of “the oldest signature” found to date. Adding to the mystery, the signature was posted by a newly created account on Nov. 26, 2022, under the pseudonym of OneSignature.

Cointelegraph confirmed the validity of the signature. Source: verifybitcoinmessage.com

OneSignature’s account history shows no other involvement on the forum, thus confirming that the intent for its creation was only to show off the oldest signed message. Digging deeper into the username shows a protected Twitter account, which was created back in October 2009.

Twitter account of user OneSignature. Source: Twitter

Cointelegraph confirmed that the address used by the mysterious poster holds no balance. The revelation of the signature dating back to the Bitcoin genesis period confirms the people involved in building Bitcoin’s legacy keep a close eye on the ecosystem while feeding the general public’s curiosity from time to time.

Related: Bitcoin is the king of crypto brand awareness for Aussies: Report

Despite the decade-long regulatory hurdles and prolonged bear markets, Bitcoin has managed to always come on top. However, the falling Bitcoin prices have added stress to the mining ecosystem.

The Bitcoin mining revenue in terms of the U.S. dollar is currently at two-year lows, down to $11.67 million, a number last seen on Nov. 2, 2020.

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Will Grayscale be the next FTX?

Grayscale is fighting the good fight on behalf of everyone in cryptocurrency.

On Nov. 18, Grayscale, the asset manager running the world’s largest Bitcoin (BTC) fund, released a statement detailing the security of its digital assets products and affirming that it won’t share its proof of reserves with customers. 

“Due to recent events, investors are understandably inquiring deeper into their crypto investments,” the statement begins, which is quite the understatement following the implosion of FTX and the inquiry into Sam Bankman-Fried’s questionable leadership. In no time, the question on everyone’s lips became clear. Will Grayscale be next?

The answer is that it’s unlikely. And that’s largely because the people at the top, the ones who made Grayscale what it is, appear to be more competent than Sam Bankman-Fried ever was.

Let’s look at the facts.

It’s true and possibly undeniable that the crypto industry will take another dive if Grayscale doesn’t fix its balance sheet. The space simply cannot afford another crash, not so soon after FTX and not that of such a key player. Grayscale oversees more than $10 billion in BTC, Ether (ETH) and other assets and represents its parent company’s biggest revenue generator.

Related: It’s time for crypto fans to stop supporting cults of personality

Grayscale’s parent company — the same that owns trading firm Genesis, mining company Foundry, crypto investment app Luno, and media outlet CoinDesk, among others — is Digital Currency Group, whose founder and CEO Barry Silbert shared a note to DCG shareholders on Nov. 23 addressing all the “noise” surrounding the company. He indicated that despite the so-called crypto winter, the company was on track to reach $800 million in revenue and its separate entities were “operating as usual.”

“We have weathered previous crypto winters,” the CEO’s note read, “and while this one may feel more severe, collectively we will come out of it stronger.”

Silbert is an early Bitcoin evangelist and a true cryptocurrency enthusiast. But, unlike Sam Bankman-Fried, he has 28 years of experience under his belt. Before he discovered crypto, he used to be an investment banker in New York and was the CEO of stock trading platform Second Market, which he sold to Nasdaq in 2015. This is not, in other words, his first rodeo.

Related: From the NY Times to WaPo, the media is fawning over Bankman-Fried

Silbert, along with Grayscale’s own leadership, has also been putting up a parallel fight with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission after regulators rejected its application to turn its flagship Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC) into a spot Bitcoin exchange-traded fund (ETF), the first United States one. The SEC did so on the grounds of “failure by the investment manager to answer questions about concerns around market manipulation” and poor investment protection, but you could just as well make the argument that had they accepted the bid, cryptocurrencies would have had the opportunity to “open up to more institutional investment” and potentially avoid the current downturn we’re experiencing.

Grayscale then filed a petition challenging the decision with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia and proceeded to sue the watchdog for what it called an “arbitrary, capricious, and discriminatory” ruling.

In other words: to anyone who cares about the future of crypto and believes in the importance of regulators acting in good faith to propel the industry forward, Grayscale is fighting a good fight.

“Panic sparked by others is not a good enough reason to circumvent complex security arrangements that have kept our investors’ assets safe for years,” Grayscale’s Nov. 18 statement noted. They have proven their worth and substantiated their reputation with a decade-long track record of consistent growth. This is unlikely to change anytime soon.

Daniele Servadei is the co-founder and CEO of Sellix, an e-commerce platform based in Italy.

This article is for general information purposes and is not intended to be and should not be taken as legal or investment advice. The views, thoughts, and opinions expressed here are the author’s alone and do not necessarily reflect or represent the views and opinions of Cointelegraph.

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The FTX collapse continues to unfold, BlockFi announces bankruptcy filing and Kraken settles a sanctions breach: Hodler’s Digest, Nov. 27 – Dec. 3

Coming every Saturday, Hodlers Digest will help you track every single important news story that happened this week. The best (and worst) quotes, adoption and regulation highlights, leading coins, predictions and much more a week on Cointelegraph in one link.

Top Stories This Week

BlockFi files for bankruptcy, cites FTX collapse for its troubles

Digital asset lending company BlockFi announced on Nov. 28 that it has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in New Jersey. The bankruptcy filing revealed, among other details, that BlockFi aims to restructure and keep specific employees on board. BlockFi has eight daughter companies that are also included in the bankruptcy motion. Later news revealed bankruptcy proceeding details, including BlockFis attorney reporting that $355 million of the organizations capital is sitting frozen on FTX.

Kraken settles with US Treasury’s OFAC for ‘apparent’ sanctions violations

In a settlement with the United States Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), U.S. crypto exchange Kraken will pay a fine of approximately $362,000 for breaking sanctions against Iran. The firm self-reported the violation to the OFAC, according to comments from Marco Santori, Krakens chief legal officer. Kraken allegedly allowed usage of its exchange by Iran-based participants and did not have a proper system in place for banning certain IP addresses. The firm has agreed to put $100,000 toward sanctions compliance measures as part of the settlement, in addition to the $362,000 fine.

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Why Grayscale’s New Digital Currency Ad Could Bring Crypto Investing To Millions

FTX was the fastest corporate failure in US history Trustee calls for probe

FTX headlines keep rolling in as events unfold. FTXs bankruptcy case has prompted the U.S. trustee working the case to request an independent examiner to come look into the details surrounding FTXs downfall. Another headline revealed that bank accounts of sister entity Alameda Research were reportedly used for FTX customer fund activities without the exchange working with a bank directly. FTX was also the subject of a Dec. 1 meeting of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry. Additionally, Bahamian authorities are investigating FTX.

Binance hires audit firm that served Donald Trump to verify crypto reserves

Binance continued to work on increasing its transparency regarding its reserves. The crypto exchange hired Mazars, an accounting firm known for retaining former U.S. President Donald Trump as a long-time client, to perform its proof-of-reserves (PoR) audit. Mazars and the Trump family cut ties in 2022. In another development related to the PoR audit, Binance has recently moved large amounts of cryptocurrencies, raising concerns in the crypto community.

3AC bankruptcy process faces challenges amid unknown whereabouts of founders

Three Arrows Capital liquidators are having difficulties engaging with Su Zhu and Kyle Davies, the hedge fund’s founders. During a virtual hearing in the Southern District of New York Bankruptcy Court, lawyers representing the liquidators said the founders did not engage with them in recent months, despite being active on social media. Zhu and Davies are believed to be currently based in Indonesia and the United Arab Emirates, where it is difficult to enforce foreign court orders.

Winners and Losers

At the end of the week, Bitcoin (BTC) is at $17,002, Ether (ETH) at $1,288 and XRP at $0.39. The total market cap is at $857.72 billion, according to CoinMarketCap.

Among the biggest 100 cryptocurrencies, the top three altcoin gainers of the week are Fantom (FTM) at 32.0%, ApeCoin (APE) at 20.85% and GMX (GMX) at 20.67%. 

The top three altcoin losers of the week are BinaryX (BNX) at -18.11%, Nexo (NEXO) at -9.53% and Convex Finance (CVX) at -7.48%.

For more info on crypto prices, make sure to read Cointelegraphs market analysis.

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Most Memorable Quotations

I think that the crypto industry will have to take a more focused approach, shifting from hype cycles toward building real utility.

Rahul Advani, APAC policy director at Ripple

If youre a Brazilian or youre from Venezuela or Argentina, it becomes much easier to understand the power of a decentralized currency.

Marcel Pechman, markets analyst and Cointelegraph contributor

DeFi-centric platforms simply cannot fall victim to shady business practices because code is law for them.

Aishwary Gupta, DeFi chief of staff at Polygon

We have definitely noticed more people buying Bitcoin due to the FTX crash.

Imo Bbics, chief marketing officer at Relai

I do think Apple has sort of singled themselves out as the only company that is trying to control unilaterally what apps get on a device and I dont think that’s a sustainable or good place to be.

Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Meta

Clearly, I made a lot of mistakes or things I would give anything to be able to do over again.

Sam SBF Bankman-Fried, former CEO of FTX

Prediction of the Week 

Bitcoin will teleport to $14K or worse if BTC breaks $16K Analyst

Bitcoin spent some time at over $17,000, although the asset has played above and below the level multiple times in the past days, according to Cointelegraphs BTC price index. 

Early in the week, pseudonymous digital asset analyst il Capo Of Crypto tweeted that danger possibly lies ahead for BTC if the asset falls under the $16,000 mark. When it breaks below 16k, it teleports to 12k-14k, the analyst said on Nov. 28.

Other notable factors and analysis were also mentioned in the article, including the potential importance of Novembers monthly candle close.

FUD of the Week 

Libertex crypto exchange head Vyacheslav Taran dies in helicopter crash in France

A third unexpected death recently shook the crypto space. Vyacheslav Taran, the 53-year-old billionaire Russian president of Libertex Group, died in a helicopter accident on Nov. 25, confirmed in an official statement from Libertex. Taran also founded Forex Club and had a hand in multiple crypto endeavors. The helicopter trip to Monaco from Switzerland only had Taran and the pilot on board, both killed in the crash. Amber Groups 30-year-old co-founder, Tiantian Kullander, and MakerDAOs 29-year-old co-founder, Nikolai Mushegian, also both unexpectedly died in November and October, respectively.

EmpiresX ‘head trader’ to face 4 years of prison over $100M crypto ‘Ponzi’

Joshua David Nicholas received a prison sentence of approximately four years for his involvement in EmpiresX, a $100 million crypto Ponzi operation. Nicholas served as head trader for the scheme, claiming the promise of profits based on bot trading, although the operation was actually a Ponzi scheme that misused customer funds. Still at large, Emerson Pires and Flavio Goncalves also played roles in the scam, which ran from 2020 to 2022.

Bankman-Fried on the hook in Texas, called to appear at Feb. hearing

An investigation by the Texan securities regulator is looking into whether Sam Bankman-Fried and FTX US violated Texas securities laws. Bankman-Fried must appear in court on Feb. 2 as part of the investigation. According to a notice of hearing filed by Texas State Securities Board Director Joseph Rotunda and served to Bankman-Fried on Nov. 29, FTX US offered unregistered securities to Texans through its EARN accounts.

Best Cointelegraph Features

South Koreas unique and amazing crypto universe

Theres this whole other side of crypto that we just dont hear about thats based on Asian culture. And thats all originating in South Korea.

Socios boss goal? To knock crypto out of the park

As an entrepreneur, I always try to find new opportunities At the end of 2017, I started to look at crypto from a sports angle.

How stable are stablecoins in the FTX crypto market contagion?

The collapse of crypto-exchange FTX hit the crypto world like a tropical storm. It bears asking once again: How stable are stablecoins?

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Alameda Research invested $1.15B in crypto miner Genesis Digital: Report

Sam Bankman-Fried was consulted on the capital injection, which was made before crypto prices plummeted.

Crypto mining company Genesis Digital Assets was the biggest venture investment made by Alameda Research, FTX’s sister company and in the center of the exchange’s bankruptcy. Documents disclosed by Bloomberg on Dec. 3 show that Genesis Digital raised $1.15 billion from Alameda in less than nine months. 

The capital infusion was made before the crypto prices downturn, between August 2021 and April of this year. Genesis Digital is the major United States-based Bitcoin mining company, and it’s not related to Genesis Capital, the trading company with $175 million worth of funds locked away in an FTX trading account.

Former FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried recently recognized participating in Alameda’s venture decisions, including the investment in Genesis Digital, despite initially denying it to regulators. Based on the documents, the capital deployment was made by Alameda in four different moments: $100 million in August 2021, $550 million in January, $250 million in February, and $250 million in April 2022.

Last year, Genesis Digital raised a total of $556 million through two separate funding rounds to fuel its aggressive growth plans. Some of the funds sought the purchase of 20,000 Bitcoin miners from Canaan, a new data center in Texas and the expansion of its U.S. and Northern European operations.

The mining sector has seen its margins of profit being squeezed by rising energy costs and the bear market. The latest Q3 mining report from Hashrate Index highlighted several factors that have led to a significantly lower hash price and higher cost to produce 1 BTC. The revenue earned by Bitcoin miners fell to two-year lows to $11.67 million, due to poor market performance and a heavier computational demand.

The recent FTX crisis is expected to make the crypto winter even longer as investors’ confidence eroded. A Coinbase report shows that stablecoin dominance reached a new high of 18%, indicating that the liquidity crisis might extend at least until the end of 2023.

Genesis Digital Assets did not immediately respond to Cointelegraphs’ requests for comments.

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How to buy food with Bitcoin?

Users can pay bills with cryptocurrency directly from their crypto wallet or using a payment processor acting as an online crypto payment gateway.

Bitcoin (BTC) is a dynamic monetary asset with the potential of being both — a commodity and a currency. For instance, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) classified BTC as a commodity, whereas El Salvador made Bitcoin a legal tender in 2021. 

So, does this make BTC a store of value or a medium of exchange? It can do both — On one hand, BTC can be added to treasuries as an inflationary hedge. On the other hand, it could also serve the retail purpose of paying for routine expenses. 

Almost over a decade ago, the first person to utilize Bitcoin for a business transaction was Laszlo Hanyecz, who spent 10,000 BTC on two pizzas, or as the crypto community addresses it, the Bitcoin pizza. However, that is not the amount of BTC anyone needs to actually buy food in the real world now. Why? Because customers have realized to only pay the amount for which the product is worth, not more or less. 

This article will discuss different ways by which one can buy food using Bitcoin. From crypto debit cards and gift cards to crypto food delivery portals, this article will lay down all possible options to efficiently use cryptocurrency for grabbing a meal. 

Various ways to buy food using cryptocurrency

There are a few ways to buy food with Bitcoin, depending on the user’s needs and interests. Following this, these are the three most common ways to use cryptocurrency for daily expenses like food:

Crypto cards

Crypto cards are like regular debit or credit cards, but crypto cards let the customer use their crypto to make payments. They essentially deduct crypto from the user’s wallet and transfer fiat at the merchant’s end. 

It helps users pay their routine bills through crypto without the complexities of finding outlets that accept crypto payments. Moreover, nowadays, numerous crypto card companies offer mobile apps that make it easy for the customer to spend Bitcoin anywhere. 

Crypto gift cards

Customers may purchase gift cards for several food and delivery services using cryptocurrencies. They can then redeem said gift cards to pay for their meals in digital currencies. Crypto gift cards facilitate the sale and purchase of items from participating merchants to customers using cryptocurrency. There are a number of companies that offer gift cards, so it’s easy to find one that fits user needs.

Crypto food delivery portals

Crypto food delivery sites are connected to many food and beverage outlets across various regions. It is like a website or application for ordering food from nearby restaurants and paying the platform via crypto instead of paying the food vendor. 

How to buy food using a crypto card?

Crypto cards allow Bitcoin transactions on various items in the physical world. However, in order to spend BTC via a crypto card for daily needs like food, consumers need to follow certain steps:

The first step is to set up a digital wallet, along with a merchant account. Given there are several crypto cards available in the market. Hence, it is ideal to research the options and choose one that meets the respective user’s needs and budget.Sign up by downloading the app and completing the Know Your Customer (KYC) requirements. Registering for the card and creating an account with the provider will allow the user to efficiently access their funds and make purchases online or in-store.Users may set up a spending limit along with scheduling regular deposits into their accounts. 

Almost all crypto cards allow customers to instantly convert crypto to fiat. Nevertheless, how to choose a crypto card that suits an individual’s goals? While some customers may prefer cash-back rewards, others may gravitate toward yielding services. 

Many cards are suitable for regular shoppers since they work as purchase reward cards that allow users to earn money back on purchases. Following this, some cards also allow users to earn interest on crypto held in the account. 

Furthermore, while accessing the utility of a crypto card, make sure to check for multi-coin support. The crypto card should ideally support several cryptocurrencies, such as BTC, Ether (ETH) and Litecoin (LTC), among others. 

Companies offering crypto credit cards include BlockFi and Gemini. However, more companies offer crypto debit cards, such as Coinbase, Crypto.com, BlockCard, Binance Visa Card and BitPay. 

How to buy food using a crypto gift card?

Crypto gift cards are loaded with digital funds that can be used at any participating restaurant or retail store. They’re straightforward to use and provide a way for customers to spend their cryptocurrencies in a convenient manner. Here are some steps on how to get started: 

Brands like Amazon and Walmart don’t accept Bitcoin directly, but they do accept crypto gift card services. Following this, to directly pay for food in BTC using a crypto gift card, users may use Bitrefill. It is a website that offers gift cards, prepaid mobile refills and Bitcoin Lightning Network services for over 1600 products in 170 countries.

How to use crypto food delivery portals?

Crypto food delivery portals are not drastically different from using crypto gift cards. Both connect the user to merchants that accommodate the use of crypto services for payments. Following this, the steps are also fairly similar — choosing a platform, signing up and loading the wallet with funds.

Furthermore, customers have different options for using a crypto-delivery portal to buy food. From simply buying food with cryptocurrency to purchasing groceries on credit and then paying off those purchases with cryptocurrency, both make crypto delivery portals convenient for making crypto payments. 

Platforms that allow users to order food directly from restaurants and then pay for it in cryptocurrency, like Hungry? in the United Kingdom, Sprigz in the United States, BiteMyCoin in Australia and Eats24/7 in Canada, can be an alternative way of ordering food using cryptocurrencies.

Should you buy food with crypto?

There is no black-and-white answer to whether or not users should choose crypto payments to buy food. However, there are both benefits and drawbacks to using cryptocurrency for food purchases.

On the plus side, cryptocurrency transactions are generally quick and straightforward. Following this, given that cryptocurrency transactions are recorded on the blockchain, it makes the process of tracing the history of transactions efficient. Furthermore, crypto payments directly connect the customer to the merchant, eliminating the need for intermediaries such as banks.

On the flip side, crypto payments pose a threat of monetary loss via hacks. Additionally, the digital asset class is also highly volatile, which may cause difficulty in pursuing daily transactions. So users must do their research before using cryptocurrency as a medium of exchange for daily expenses. 

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Crypto lender Genesis allegedly owes $900M to Gemini’s clients: Report

The issue is tied to the Gemini Earn program, which offers 8% earn interest on crypto lending and is operated by Gemini in partnership with Genesis.

Crypto lender Genesis and its parent company Digital Currency Group (DCG) allegedly owes $900 million to Gemini’s clients, according to a Financial Times report disclosed on Dec. 3 citing people familiar with the matter. 

The issue derives from the FTX dramatic collapse in November. Crypto exchange Gemini operates a product called Gemini Earn in partnership with Genesis, offering investors the opportunity to earn 8% in interest by lending out their crypto, including Bitcoin and stablecoins pegged to fiat currencies.

On Nov. 16, Genesis announced it had temporarily suspended withdrawals citing “unprecedented market turmoil, days after disclosing around $175 million worth of funds stuck in an FTX trading account. Genesis is reportedly facing difficulties raising money for its lending unit, but refuted speculation of its “imminent” bankruptcy.

Also on Nov. 16, Gemini Earn started experiencing issues with deposits, according to the exchange status page. The product remains unavailable at the time of writing, while all other Gemini services, including the exchange trading engine and the Gemini Credit Card remain available. 

Gemini has formed a creditor’s committee and is working to recoup the funds from Genesis and DCG, noted the report. In an effort to restore clients’ trust amid fears of contagious spread following FTX’s fall, Gemini announced on Nov. 29 its Trust Center, dashboard showing metrics for funds held by Gemini and on the exchange’s behalf.

In the Tweeter thread about the Trust Center, however, Earn program clients stated they would regain their trust once withdrawal earnings resumed.

Gemini will not be trusted by anyone if the EARN situation is not resolved for your customers. Do not create and market a product that has absurd risk to your customer’s funds. Not ethical for Gemini to collect fees but take no responsibility. Not good care for your customers.

— Clint (@Az78Clint) November 30, 2022

Gemini’s Earn program was launched in 2021 in the United States. As of November 2022, its operates in more than 65 countries, including new jurisdictions like Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Hungary, Ireland, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, Sweden and others, the firm said. The exchange was hit by the ongoing crypto bear market, cutting up to 20% of its staff this year

Gemini and Genesis did not immediately respond to Cointelegraphs’ requests for comments.

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The future of smart contract adoption for enterprises

Smart contacts capable of handling complex computations, while ensuring a level of privacy are the future for enterprise adoption.

Decentralized finance (DeFi) markets may have cooled down over the past year, but the technology powering these applications continues to advance. In particular, smart contract platforms that enable transactions to take place across DeFi applications are maturing to meet enterprise requirements. 

While it’s notable that enterprises have previously shown interest in DeFi use cases, smart contract limitations have hampered adoption. A report published by Grayscale Research in March puts this in perspective, noting that “Despite handling millions of transactions per day, smart contract platforms in their current state would be incapable of handling even 10% of the worlds’ internet traffic.”

This notion is particularly troublesome considering the market opportunity behind DeFi. For instance, Grayscale Research’s report mentions that DeFi and Metaverse applications combined are likely to have a market capitalization much larger than the current digital asset market.

How smart contracts are advancing

Given this potential, it’s become clear that smart contracts must advance in order to accommodate growth. John Woods, chief technology officer of the Algorand Foundation — the supporting organization of the eponymous blockchain ecosystem — told Cointelegraph that today’s smart contracts have a number of technical restrictions, such as scalability issues, which have resulted in slow transaction time and the inability to process complex computations.

Recent: How smart contracts can improve efficiency in healthcare

Woods shared that smart contracts uploaded to the Algorand blockchain are applied primarily to traditional DeFi use cases that enable things like automatic trading of on-chain digital assets. Yet, when it comes to enterprise use cases, Woods mentioned that he believes it’s best to put as little information on-chain as possible. He said:

“I’ve previously worked with large enterprises that would want to conduct DeFi use cases like post-trade settlement on a blockchain network. When I was building those enterprise applications, I would only put the most important pieces of information on-chain. This would allow smart contracts to perform efficiently without having to do heavy computation on-chain.” 

According to Woods, this methodology allows enterprises to benefit from smart contacts, yet only when simple computations are involved. While this may serve as a solution to current limitations, advancements are being made to ensure that all enterprise data can be supported by smart contracts.

For example, Scott Dykstra, chief technology officer and co-founder of Space and Time — a decentralized data platform — told Cointelegraph that his firm is building a community-operated off-chain data platform that can handle any workload in a single cluster.

“We’re working to enable developers to run queries against data we’ve indexed from all major blockchains and data loaded from any off-chain source,” he explained. After queries are run, Dykstra explained that Space and Time uses patented novel cryptography, known as “Proof of SQL,” which can prove each query result is accurate and that the underlying data hasn’t been tampered with.

This is an important point, as Dykstra pointed out that enterprise data queries are typically run in off-chain data warehouses. But, because these data warehouses are centralized, query results often can’t be trusted by a smart contract and, therefore can result in limitations.

Given that Space and Time can cryptographically prove that each data query result is accurate, Dykstra explained that this allows for complex computations to be connected directly to smart contracts without limitations.

“Space and Time’s ability to connect analytic query results directly to smart contracts (with cryptographic guarantees), will serve as a trustless intermediary between enterprise data and the limited storage of the blockchain,” he said. In turn, this process will automate more complex business logic for enterprise use.

Although this solution allows for complex data to be processed by smart contracts, privacy concerns remain. Paul Brody, global blockchain lead at EY, told Cointelegraph that while the value proposition of smart contracts for enterprises is enormous, so are the obstacles. He said:

“The biggest is privacy — public blockchains don’t natively support privacy. Since companies consider their buying arrangements to be sensitive information, no firm will deploy these solutions until they are confident in the privacy approach.”

Woods is also aware that enterprises are hesitant to use smart contracts due to privacy concerns. “Everything currently done across a public blockchain network is transparent, but enterprise use cases require some level of privacy. What’s coming next is privacy on smart contracts,” he said.

As such, Woods shared that Algorand is currently working on a smart contract privacy solution. While no other details were revealed, Woods — who previously worked as the director of Cardano architecture at Input Output Global (IOHK) — explained that IOHK is also looking into solving privacy around smart contracts with a product called Midnight.

Brody further noted that EY is building tools to enable both private payments and transfers on the public Ethereum network and is developing its own privacy-enabled products. For example, in July 2021, EY announced the release of Nightfall 3, a product that combines zero-knowledge proofs with Optimistic Rollups to improve transaction efficiency and privacy on Ethereum.

“Nightfall is a zero knowledge-optimistic roll-up for payments and transfers under privacy,” Brody said. He added that Starlight is another product from EY, which acts as a compiler that converts solidity contracts into zero knowledge, privacy-enabled circuits. “Both are contributions into the public domain and accessible to all,” he said.

Even with privacy across smart contracts, anonymity remains an issue for large companies. Weijia Zhang, vice president of engineering at Wanchain and the regional head of China at the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance, told Cointelegraph that smart contracts today do not have a mechanism to verify a user’s identity. In turn, bad actors can exploit flaws in a smart contract’s design, which can result in stolen assets by unidentified actors. Indeed, this is a major concern as DeFi hacks continue to increase.

Smart contracts in the future

Concerns aside, it’s notable that solutions are being developed to advance smart contract capabilities. Industry experts are, therefore, confident that enterprises will use smart contracts in the future. 

“There is no doubt that enterprises will eventually adopt smart contract solutions. There are multiple promising technological innovations occurring in the public blockchain space that have smart contracts at their core,” said Zhang.

That said, it’s important to mention that platforms on which smart contracts execute are also advancing. For example, Woods noted that Algorand focuses on scalability to support enterprise use cases. “It’s not that smart contracts need to get more expressive, but we need to give more resources to smart contracts as well. We also need to focus on scaling blockchains to make sure they are faster and able to connect to more smart contracts per second.”

Zhang further explained that a zero-knowledge Ethereum Virtual Machine can solve privacy and data challenges, while cross-chain bridge technology can solve interoperability issues. He added that sharding can solve scalability.

Recent: How NFT court summons could change the legal landscape

“Smart contract solutions will revolutionize complex systems that require the participation of multiple parties, resulting in system-wide efficiencies. It’s not that enterprises will want to use these solutions. It’s that they’ll have to,” he said. Yet, Brody mentioned that it’s important to temper expectations, noting:

“Companies implement systems slowly and usually only when necessary, because of a major upgrade or a change in business operations. This means that adoption rates that we see in the consumer world are not likely. What takes a decade for consumers might happen slowly over 30 years in the enterprise space.”

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A Mysterious Creature Killing Cattle in Colorado Leaves No Tracks

The many unexplained incidents of cattle mutilation across the vast cattle ranching industry in the U.S. (and also Argentina in South America) get plenty of attention from both the mainstream media – because of their costs and animal-sacrificing cult fears – and the paranormal media because of the rumors of alien abduction and government conspiracies. However, other mysterious cattle deaths without mutilations or lack of bleeding also occur, and a strange rash of over 40 deaths in Colorado has both medias, law enforcement and cattle ranchers puzzled. While many are quick to blame wolves, two features of these mysterious animal killings rule  them out – no footprints and no teeth marks have been found. What is mysteriously murdering cows in Colorado and will it be stopped before it kills again?

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Avalanche to power Alibaba Cloud’s infrastructure services in Asia

Avalanche’s partnership with Alibaba Cloud will see the development of tools that enable users to launch validator nodes on Avalanche’s public blockchain platform in Asia.

Alibaba Cloud, a.k.a Aliyun, a subset of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, announced an integration with Avalanche blockchain to power the company’s Node-as-a-Service initiatives. 

Avalanche’s partnership with Alibaba Cloud will see the development of tools that enable users to launch validator nodes on Avalanche’s public blockchain platform in Asia. The integration will allow Avalanche developers to use Alibaba Cloud’s plug-and-play infrastructure as a service to launch new validators.

Developers expecting high resource demands during peak hours can also tap into additional resources — computing, storage, and distribution — offered by Alibaba Cloud.

APAC’s largest cloud service provider, Alibaba Cloud, has expanded support for #Avalanche!

This integration enables developers to easily launch their own validator nodes, with access to @alibaba_cloud‘s plug-and-play infrastructure and suite of products.https://t.co/MlXTOYuJgG

— Avalanche (@avalancheavax) December 2, 2022

According to the announcement, Avalanche hosts over 1,200 validators and processes roughly 2 million daily transactions. The scale of the partnership is massive, considering that Alibaba Cloud stands as the largest Asian cloud service provider in the Asia-Pacific region.

Steps to integrate Avalanche with Alibaba Cloud. Source: Alibaba Cloud 

As part of the integration, Alibaba Cloud ran a special promotion by offering Avalanche developers credit toward any of their services. Avalanche currently powers over 1,000 projects, including decentralized finance (DeFi) ecosystems such as Aave (AAVE), Curve, BENQi, Sushi, and Chainlink (LINK).

Related: Alibaba to ban crypto miner sales amid Chinese crackdown

Chinese venture capitalist Bo Shen, a general partner of the Vitalik Buterin-advised venture capital fund Fenbushi Capital, claimed to have lost $42 million from his Trust Wallet.

Shen confirmed that the drained funds belonged to him and was not related to Fenbushi Capital:

“The incident has been reported to the local law enforcement. FBI and lawyers both have been involved. Civilization and justice will eventually prevail over barbarism and evil. This is the iron law of human society. It’s just a matter of time.”

Blockchain analytics firm SlowMist later verified Shen’s loss of funds while confirming no security issues from Trust Wallet’s end.

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The Abominable Snowman/Yeti: How About a New Search? And What About the Story and History?

Only about a week ago, I was speaking with a friend in the field of Cryptozoology (or, as I prefer to call it, “Monster Hunting”) on the subject of the Yeti/Abominable Snowman of the Himalayas. There’s no doubt the creatures need a collective new injection of visibility. So, today, I figured it would be a good time to give the creatures a new bit of life, so to speak – and to look at the history of the mysterious phenomenon. So, let’s begin. Bigfoot is certainly the most famous of the world’s many and varied hairy man-beasts. Running a close second, however, is the Yeti, also known as the Abominable Snowman. The specific region in which the legendary beast is said to roam is the Himalayas, a vast, mountainous expanse that dominates Nepal, Tibet. In the same way that the United States appears to be the home of several distinctly different creatures – such as the huge, lumbering apes of the Pacific Northwest and the smaller skunk-apes of Florida – so there appears to be more than one kind of Yeti. Reportedly, they range from man-sized creatures to enormous giants, close to twenty feet in height. Of course, claims of such extreme and extraordinary heights must be treated cautiously. They may well be distorted accounts of encounters with animals of smaller stature, but no less impressive, perhaps around 12 to 13 feet tall. 

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