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Crypto && Coffee 019 | Thirty-Four Days Until the Halvening

Technology Recap: 

Bitcoin: 

BitcoinCash: 

  • At block height 630,000 the BCH halving occurred, dropping the block reward from 12.5 BCH to 6.25 BCH.  

Ethereum: 

  • Sigma Prime released their ETH2.0 Lighthouse development update. In this update they discussed a stable public testnet, ETH2.0 spec bug, upgraded spec v0.11 and a multi-client testnet 
  • One of the other teams focused on ETH2.0, Prysmatic Labs, is seeking an external security review to assess the security of its open source client software, Prysm 
  • Ethereum has released v0.6.5 of Solidity, their high-level programming language for smart contracts 

Other Chains:  

  • In a submission last week, Ripple engineer Nik Bougalis stated the design for a new private payment system for the XRP ledger to protect exchange users from malicious third parties.  
  • Lightning Labs announced Faraday, a tool to provide node operators with recommendations for closing channels that are not performing and to expose more information about your node’s routing behavior.   
  • Agoric announced their work on Dynamic IBC (dIBC). They will now use a smart contract or VM platform to deploy new contracts that support new protocols, all on an existing chain without having to wait for chain upgrades.  
  • A new project from Thesis, tBTC, is seeking to bring together both Bitcoin and Ethereum users by allowing Bitcoin owners access to the DeFi applications that run on Ethereum. The project is expected to launch on April 27th, 2020.  
  • Augur Project announced the expected launch date of their v2 deployment. Their v2 contracts will be deployed to the Ethereum mainnet and go live during the first weeks of June. All REP tokens must migrate and an integration with Uniswap is expected.  
  • StarkWare released some metrics for their StarkEx on Ropsten for the past six weeks. They have completed over 14M transactions (roughly 11M trades and 3M transfers), at an average rate of 5 transactions per second.  
  • Anchorage announced support for custody of XRP, which will enable its enterprise customers to securely store XRP.  
  • James Prestwich, founder of Summa, open sourced a project that aims to provide a collection of ERC-20 add-ons that provide easy-to-inherit functionality. These functions include distribution to token holders, flash minting and MKR-style buy-andburn auctions.  
  • Payment channels platform Bolt Labs presented zkChannels, a layer-2 protocol that enables privacy-preserving, off-chain Bitcoin and Zcash payments between users. 
  • Last month the number of fully shielded Zcash (z2z) transactions more than doubled. Full analysis from Gareth Davies here 
  • Blockstream announced a new milestone in Simplicity, the smart contract language compatible with Blockstream’s Elements Platform. This milestone includes the release of Jets. Jets can be seen as pre-made building blocks that can aid in constructing complex programs.  
  • Ethereumbased zk-SNARKs privacy layer, Semaphore, has initialized phase two of its multi-party trusted setup. Full details on how to participate here. 
  • Privacyfocused blockchain Grin is aiming for a v4.0.0 network upgrade (HF3) around July 15, 2020. Full scope here. 
  • Maker Foundation released thirteen initial Maker Improvement Proposals (MIPs). 
  • Althea posted their vision of the Ethereum <-> Cosmos bridge. The bridge, named Peggy, will allow token holders to make arbitrary DeFi investments with liquid bridge capital.  
  • Exchange Union (xud) has released v1.0.0-beta.2 to power OpenDEX, a decentralized exchange network built on top of Lightning and Raiden. 

Mainstream Recap: 

  • Coinbase has put $1.1M of USDC into the pools powering two of the more popular DeFi applications on Ethereum: Uniswap and PoolTogether 
  • Binance announced on April 2, 2020 that it has reached an agreement to acquire CoinMarketCap. Together they will pursue their common vision of making cryptoassets more accessible and useful to users around the world.  
  • Bitcoin wallet, Blue Wallet, released their new product Local Trader. Local Trader will be a P2P non-custodial and non-KYC trade platform. It is powered by Hodl Hodl. 
  • Wasabi Wallet released v1.1.11 which adds multi-wallet support, ability to CoinJoin into another wallet, and RPC server. 
  • Cambrial Capital is winding down its operations. Read the full article here. 
  • Non-custodial Lightning Wallet Phoenix has released v1.3.0 with built-in support for TOR. 
  • Hex Trust became the first licensed digital asset custodian in Hong Kong to support the blockchain platform Corda from R3. Full details here 
  • Crypto exchange Poloniex is releasing a token launching platform, LaunchBase. The platform will collaborate closely with both industry and community members to seed and promote the adoption of quality cryptocurrencies.  
  • Gemini announced that they will support Basic Attention Token (BAT) trading on their platform starting Friday, April 24th at 9:30am EDT.  
  • The Bank of Korea has launched a new pilot program for a central bank digital currency (CBDC). Full article here. 
  • The University of Tokyo issued a press release on their research into utilizing blockchain technology for settling legal disputes.  
  • The People’s Bank of China will further its research and development of a CBDC as per an April 4th statement 
  • Crypto trading firm Coinhouse has become the first crypto company to be registered with France’s Autorité des marchés financiers (AMF).  
  • Exchange Paxful has introduced gold buying and selling to their trading platform.  
  • Class-action lawsuits are arising in federal court against seven cryptocurrency issuers and four exchanges, claiming they sold billions of dollars in unregistered assets in violation of U.S. securities laws. 

This Week’s Cup of Coffee: 

This week, we are jumping over to Hex Coffee in Charlotte, NC. Function, a seasonal blend, maintains the same freshness year-round by changing up its components. It currently includes beans from Colombia, Honduras, and Ethiopia. With notes of berries, dark chocolate and spices, this sip is a refreshing change of pace! 

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