A common thread among all emergent technologies is that there numerous misconceptions, general confusion, and many times, outright dismissiveness of the particular technology.
While that is to be expected for most young technological innovations, it is striking in its gravity among Bitcoin’s critics and people who even still tout ‘blockchain, not Bitcoin.’
Historically, the rise of new technology — such as the Internet — presents unique challenges in helping people to overcome the barrier to understanding precisely what it is, as well as its potential. This is mainly because such technologies are unprecedented, and access to information was much less accessible before the modern web.
However, with Bitcoin, it’s different. People now have access to the most open and wide-ranging repository of information in history (i.e., the Internet) and sagacious analysis of the origins of money.
Despite the consistently increasing volumes of metrics, analysis, and general information on Bitcoin and its underlying technologies, the problem of onboarding more people is still evident.
People may disagree with the underlying value proposition of Bitcoin, but it is continually frustrating when the arguments against it draw from a place of ignorance about basic concepts within the technology and broader monetary perspective of the legacy cryptocurrency.
Conversely, for people seeking more resources on Bitcoin, it can seem like a daunting task. Varied information is dispersed across the Internet, the technology is complicated, the notion of social consensus abstract, and placing Bitcoin in the context of the history of money is bizarre for people who just learned that fiat money is a relatively new phenomenon.
Curated resource lists are hard to find many times, so we decided to provide a directory of some of the best resources for learning about Bitcoin, its technology, and social/economic impact.
We have created our own guide to Bitcoin here at Blockonomi, so use that as a starting point.
It is by no means a comprehensive list, and there will assuredly be quality content left out, but we hope it can be a start on the journey towards greater knowledge about Bitcoin.
Books are often the best way to grasp the broader concept of a complex topic before diving into the details, and fortunately, some authors have furnished excellent works to help onboard people interested in the Bitcoin ecosystem.
- The Bitcoin Standard: The Decentralized Alternative to Central Banking — By Saifedean Ammous
Saifedean Ammous’ work is a comprehensive overview of how variants of money have developed dating back to the Yapese Rai Stones. By placing emphasis on specific characteristics of sound money and its effect on social and economic developments, Ammous provides a compelling narrative that places Bitcoin within the context of humanity’s perception of money.
- Mastering Bitcoin: Programming The Open Blockchain — By Andreas Antonopoulos
Quite possibly the best spokesman for Bitcoin, Antonopoulos is one of the leading proponents for the legacy cryptocurrency, and his first book helped to inspire many people to join the Bitcoin community. While more technically focused than Ammous’ work, Mastering Bitcoin unveils some of the most profound design features and implications of Bitcoin and is a must-read for anyone looking to learn more.
- The Internet of Money (Volumes 1 & 2) — By Andreas Antonopoulos
The next two works by Antonopoulos are derived from his many lectures, presentations, and public events from around the world where he has strived to promote and educate people about Bitcoin. Through a series of essays, The Internet of Money contextualizes the ‘why’ of Bitcoin and is an outstanding beginning for people looking for a broader, and briefer, overview of the cryptocurrency.
- Programming Bitcoin: Learn How To Program Bitcoin From Scratch — By Jimmy Song
Recently released and developer-oriented, Song’s book focuses on teaching Python developers how to build a Bitcoin library from scratch. His book elucidates the more complex technical components of Bitcoin to developers (i.e., Bitcoin’s Script language), and is the most comprehensive guide to programming Bitcoin to date.
- Bitcoin Money: A Tale of Bitville Discovering Good Money — By Michael Caras
Targeted towards children, Caras’ book takes the complex topics of Bitcoin and the economics behind it and conveys the content in a way that is digestible and valuable to children, and even adults.
- Essays on Bitcoin — Compiled by John Gleeson
Essays on Bitcoin is a free e-book that is comprised of a series of essays from many prominent Bitcoin community members and their takes on the original cryptocurrency.
There are some incredible blog series out there for people to follow that bring unique takes and analysis to the many components of Bitcoin that are often overlooked.
From data insights to abstract takes on the social impact of Bitcoin, blog series can become one of the most intuitive ways to gather relevant perspectives on the consistently evolving Bitcoin.
Bitcoin Online Courses and Resource/Metrics Repositories
Online courses are a powerful discovery for the hungry mind in the digital era. Classes and resources on Bitcoin, blockchain, and crypto are becoming increasingly prevalent and offer some of the most well-defined pathways for learning more about Bitcoin.
Statistical Charts, Network Charts, and Block Explorers
Once you have a firm grasp on the overarching concept of Bitcoin and how it functions, metrics websites and open-source analytics tools can become exceptionally useful for understanding the inner workings of a public blockchain.
Many of the below websites are powerful mediums for evaluating real-time data (i.e., mining difficulty, transaction volume, etc.) that can be practical for a variety of applications.
- Coinmetrics — Excellent data charts, graphs, insights, and analysis.
- Messari/OnChainFX — Everything from crypto news to analysis and metrics.
- BitcoinVisuals — In-depth Bitcoin blockchain and Lightning Network metrics.
- BitcoinWisdom — Excellent charts and data for Bitcoin’s mining and difficulty.
- Blockhain.com — Custodial wallet service with comprehensive charts and on-chain metrics for Bitocin.
- P2SH — Transaction and network metrics for Bitcoin.
- Nomics — Cryptocurrency resources and market data.
- CoinDance — Comprehensive metrics and network statistics on Bitcoin — includes interesting information on LocalBitcoins in various geographical regions as well.
Obviously, this is not a comprehensive list of all the quality resources available on Bitcoin. There are more categories, including podcasts, conferences, video presentations, the Bitcoin subreddit, merchant directories, professional trading resources, cryptoeconomics literature, developer tools, wiki guides, and much more. Bitcoin spawned an entire industry, and it is promising to know that its abundance of resources is continually expanding.
We believe that the above resources should be an effective start for any newcomer (or critic) who would like to learn more about the fundamental value proposition, technical design, and social/economic impact that Bitcoin can have.
For core cryptocurrency components, many of the above resources can also help to supplement your knowledge as we all know how fast everything in the crypto sphere moves.
And in the world of cryptocurrencies, always remember — don’t trust, verify.
Ethereum Co-Founder Anthony Di Iorio Bets Big on the Future of Cardano and Polkadot
Anthony Di Iorio, a Canadian entrepreneur and the co-founder of leading smart contract platform Ethereum, said that he believes in the potential of Cardano (ADA) and Polkadot (DOT).
In an interview with crypto proponent Anthony Pompliano, Di Iorio, who is also the CEO and founder of Canadian blockchain startup Decentral and crypto wallet Jaxx, revealed that he has a diversified investment portfolio featuring several top projects, including Cardano and Polkadot.
A Big Fan of Cardano and Polkadot
“Now I’ve kind of fallen back to just simplicity. I’m in a number of different projects, but the majority of my stuff is in the top projects. I’m a big fan of Polkadot, I’m a big fan of Cardano.”
Di Iorio went on to narrate why he was so sure of the future of these two projects. He had joined the Ethereum development team earlier in 2012 when he met Vitalik Buterin at a Bitcoin conference.
He has formed strong relationships with other co-founders of Ethereum, including Vitalik Buterin, Cardano’s founder Charles Hoskinson, and Polkadot’s current CEO Gavin Wood.
Di Iorio admitted that while he worked with these men, he knew that they were goal-oriented and would help push these projects further.
“Big fan of Charles, let’s say that. You know, taking some different approaches in the way that they’re doing things, much more on the academic side of what he’s done and bringing stuff forward. Real big fan of Gavin Wood… Knowing those guys from the days back at Ethereum – and knowing their drive and knowing their competitiveness and their smarts – I was able to see those projects for the last few years and know that they were gonna get to where they’ve gotten up to.”
Not Getting Lost in DeFi
Despite all the recent hype about DeFi, Di lorio pointed out that he is keeping his investments simple and investing in larger projects.
“Most of my stuff is in the top few things, Ether, Bitcoin, Cardano, Polkadot. I like Cosmos as well. And there’s a few others, but I’m not getting lost in all the DeFi stuff. I just think there’s not enough time, not enough energy. It’s a full-time gig to be running a lot of that stuff and keeping on top of stuff, so I’ve simplified my life quite a bit over the past few years.”
Featured image courtesy of Business Insider
What you should know if your bank is exposed to Bitcoin
On one hand, El Salvador recently became the first nation to officially declare Bitcoin as its legal tender, and on the other, several nations have recently opined that their indigenous banks face a ‘threat’ from the world’s largest crypto-asset. Nevertheless, the rise in the adoption of cryptocurrencies has been accompanied by regulators taking the fast-growing market seriously.
Banks will now face “the toughest” capital requirements for their holdings in Bitcoin and other crypto-assets under global regulators’ plans to brush off the insecurity offered by the “volatile” crypto-market.
Using money laundering, reputational challenges, and massive price swings as the base of their proposal, the Basel Committee on Banking and Supervision is in the news after it explicitly stated that the banking industry faced “increased risks” and “financial stability concerns” from crypto-assets.
Accordingly, they have now placed Bitcoin in the “highest risk” category. The aforementioned committee comprises a host of nations and global institutions as its members.
The Basel Committee isn’t alone, however, with a Bank of International Settlements exec recently commenting that El Salvador’s Bitcoin policy is an “interesting experiment.”
*BITCOIN PUT IN HIGHEST RISK CATEGORY IN BANK CAPITAL PROPOSAL
— *Walter Bloomberg (@DeItaone) June 10, 2021
What’s more, the panel proposed a 1250% risk weight be applied to a bank’s exposure to Bitcoin and certain other cryptocurrencies. Bloomberg’s estimates highlighted,
“In practice that means a bank may need to hold a dollar in capital for each dollar worth of Bitcoin, based on an 8% minimum capital requirement.”
However, stablecoins and other tokens tied to real-world assets are set for lower capital requirements. The report further highlighted,
“The capital will be sufficient to absorb a full write-off of the crypto asset exposures without exposing depositors and other senior creditors of the banks to a loss.”
The proposal did not specify any specific timeline, and hence, the implementation of these rules can take a couple of years. The proposal is, however, open to public comment before it comes into effect. It should also be noted that the committee said that the initial policies were “likely to change” several times as the market “evolves.”
Even though banks like HSBC have been cautious about stepping into crypto-trading, a few big names, like Standard Chartered Plc have announced their entry into the space.
As for Bitcoin, it fell by over 3.7% in the last 24 hours to trade at $35,418 at press time.
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Why Amp is the Best Altcoin You’ve Never Heard Of
Crypto Summer Pt. 2
I work with a crypto wizard.
Yesterday the wizard gave me a piece of advice: “Hey man, your fly is down.” After that, he told me to look into Amp, otherwise known as Crypto-Square.
Through this ERC-20 token, retailers can accept Bitcoin, Litecoin or Ethereum without having to wait 10 minutes or more for the network. Today Nordstrom, Lowes, Baskin Robbins, GameStop, Ulta Beauty, Office Depot, AMC Theaters, and Petco are just some of the stores that support Amp.
That’s right, you can go to these retailers and use Flexa’s SPEDN app (pronounced spend) to easily buy things with Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies.
And if that wasn’t enough, Coinbase just listed Amp yesterday. Coinbase-approved altcoins often skyrocket in price as 56 million users are nothing to scoff at.
Here’s everything else you should know about this project.
There’s only one thing that Flexa and ConsenSys created Amp to do: Act as collateral. Amp guarantees that real-world transactions go through instantaneously due to collateralization.
Flexa, the company that created Amp, is the puppet master attempting to make cryptocurrency the new global financial system. They initially launched a Flexa token years ago, but ditched it for Amp and a close partnership with ConsenSys.
“The new Amp token demonstrates Flexa’s unrelenting commitment to DeFi and to building new technologies that will democratize access to payments for people all over the world,” Tyler Spalding, CEO of Flexa wrote in a blogpost.
Flexa eventually wants to use Amp to guarantee home purchases, loan distributions, and fiat exchanges.
Can you guess it? Go ahead — on three…
Oh, sorry I got excited.
Staking on Amp is just like providing to a liquidity pool on Uniswap or any other DeFi protocol. I just imagine a giant Uncle Sam poster pointing at you saying “we need your tokens.”
This is another reason why Amp works. It follows the old Army adage “K.I.S.S.” or Keep it Simple Stupid. In the past few months, Amp is one of the only altcoins I feel like I can explain to my mother. That’s a good thing.
Three words should make you very bullish about an altcoin: ‘Real-World Use’
Many altcoins over-engineer their projects to death and bog their white papers down with technical mumbo jumbo to make you think their team is smarter than you. Amp is not one of these projects. It keeps it simple, stupid.
Moreover, Amp is the leading technology making it possible for retailers to exchange cryptocurrencies. It’s so ahead of the pack that dozens of businesses are already using it.
It’s a no-brainer 10x, in my opinion.
Amp is trading at $0.06 at the time of publishing with a market cap of $2.59B (for reference the market cap of Ethereum is $276 B)
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