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Blockchain

Former Georgian PM: Blockchain is the steam engine of Industry 4.0

Georgia’s former prime minister is bullish on blockchain and its potential for the future of society.

Republished by Plato

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Located at the intersection between Europe and Asia, Georgia is a small country with a big mission to drive blockchain adoption and education. In February 2017, the government of Georgia made a bold move by signing an agreement to use the Bitcoin blockchain to record land titles, making it the first national government to use blockchain for authenticating state operations.

Georgia’s innovation didn’t stop there, rather continuing to grow as the country became a powerhouse for mining crypto. Then, in June 2019, the government of Georgia signed a memorandum of understanding with blockchain technology firm Input Output Hong Kong, or IOHK, to advance blockchain projects across government sectors, with a large focus on education.

Many of these innovations took place when Mamuka Bakhtadze served as the country’s prime minister, between June 2018 through September 2019. Cointelegraph had the pleasure of sitting down with Bakhtadze to learn more about his goals to drive blockchain innovation and education.

Rachel Wolfson: How did you start implementing blockchain and digital currencies into policy when you were Prime Minister of Georgia?

Mamuka Bakhtadze: This actually started before I became prime minister of Georgia. Georgia is the first country that introduced blockchain technology in public services. That happened a few years ago, when we partnered with the blockchain company Bitfury.

Our Ministry of Justice implemented Bitfury’s blockchain to register and verify property transactions. This was the first time not only for Georgia, but for any state to implement blockchain in the public services sector.

RW: You recently spoke at the virtual Davos event this year about taking blockchain further; what can the future hold?

MB: Georgia is a very good example of the limitless opportunities associated with blockchain, especially within the public services sector. Currently, we are implementing a very important project in the education sector together with IOHK and Charles Hoskinson, who is a very good friend of Georgia. Together with the Ministry of Justice and Minister for Education, we are implementing the credentials verification project. The team is using a Cardano-backed blockchain for this.

“Overall, we have a vision to make Georgia a regional hub for business, trade, tourism and finance, which are all important for innovation. It’s also important for the companies who are involved in innovation here to have access to a pool of talented individuals.”

When you want to make a transformation for your country, it’s very important to have a national idea that will consolidate the energy and effort required for it. In our opinion, this was education. In 2019, we initiated an education reform, and now, according to our legislation, it is mandatory for any government to invest 6% of GDP in education, which is around 25% of our budget.

So education is really a big element for Georgia. With this reform, we hope that we will be able to position Georgia as a hub for innovation, and blockchain plays a large role in this. The project that we are doing now with the Input Output team is very important from that perspective.

RW: Is Cardano and IOHK also setting up an education center in Georgia, where they’re teaching students about blockchain and then providing career opportunities?

MB: This is part of phase two of the plan. The first phase, as I have mentioned, is to finalize this project for credentials verification. The next phase will focus on the skill-building process for Georgians who would like to become part of this great initiative.

RW: Is the Georgian government also looking to implement blockchain solutions to revive tourism and travel that may have been impacted by COVID-19?

MB: Tourism is a very important industry for Georgia. Our population is less than 4 million people, and last year, we hosted more than 9 million visitors. So, tourism is really a very important industry for both the country and our economy.

I think blockchain can provide some very interesting solutions to this problem. Many countries are now trying to get data showing whether people have been tested for COVID-19. They also want information to show whether people have been living in so-called “high-risk” zones. At the same time, this is very sensitive data. Therefore, the security and safety measures of how to use this data is very important.

Blockchain can provide some interesting solutions for countries like Georgia who are so dependent on tourism. I know that there are some Asian countries that are working very intensively on these solutions. Georgia should also determine which technologies we will have to use to increase our visitors again. I think that blockchain would be the right answer to this question.

RW: What are your thoughts on Bitcoin and cryptocurrency in general, and how is this being applied in Georgia?

MB: I’m a strong advocate for digital currencies and I have many strong arguments for being so supportive. It’s a fact that we are living in the era of the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Digital currencies are an inevitable part of this era. At the same time, the lessons learned from the previous industrial revolutions are very interesting.

“The technologies introduced in the first industrial revolution were struggling for decades to close the economic gap that stood between them and industrial relations. Still, the gaps that we are observing between countries and economies have the same roots. Therefore, it’s my understanding that the fourth industrial revolution is the greatest opportunity of all.”

However, for countries like Georgia, the use of digital currencies — an organic part of the fourth industrial revolution — should become part of the transformation for both nations and their economies. Moreover, what we are learning now from the COVID-19 pandemic shows that the global economy needs digital currencies and cryptocurrency, which will make transactions safer and more efficient. Therefore, I think that it’s an inevitable process.

Of course, there are a lot of barriers, and I really do hope to see more of an open-minded approach from governments and regulators when it comes to digital currencies. But the bottom line is that all of us should understand that this move is inevitable. The countries who will be more supportive of digital currencies and cryptocurrencies will have a very significant competitive advantage in the 21st century. Georgia cannot afford to miss this opportunity.

RW: So would you say Georgia is crypto-friendly? Are digital assets going to be adopted in Georgia earlier than other places in the world?

MB: I’m optimistic about this, and just to finalize the comparison I made with the first industrial revolution, I think another big part of this will be blockchain adoption. Blockchain will have the same impact as the steam engine had during the first industrial revolution. The first industrial revolution was powered by the steam engine and the fourth industrial revolution will be powered by blockchain. That’s really a game changer.

When it comes to regulations, politicians everywhere in the world and in Georgia should be more open-minded. Once again, the pandemic has shown us why. The global economy needs digital currencies now.

“The minister of finance, together with my team, have crafted a brief concept of what type of national digital currency Georgia could have. I do hope that one day in the future, this project will be implemented.”

There are also a number of other initiatives. Of course, I would like to see Georgia as a frontrunner when it comes to blockchain and digital currencies.

Source: https://cointelegraph.com/news/former-georgian-pm-blockchain-is-the-steam-engine-of-industry-4-0

Blockchain

PARSIQ Integrated Into Polkadot For Smart Triggers Across the Relay Chain

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[PRESS RELEASE – Tallinn, Estonia, 11th May 2021]

PARSIQ, a platform that monitors data and automation across blockchains, bridging both on and off-chain apps and sending out user alerts once transactions are executed, now offers compatibility for smart triggers with the Polkadot Relay Chain.

A smart trigger is effectively a smart contract that is deployed into the PARSIQ ecosystem. It allows triggers from external chains to be passed to off-chain systems. It collects data across a variety of chains in real-time and then constructs an indexed composition of actions in any one chain in the process of reverse-engineering. It can validate and process a huge amount of real-time data simultaneously via its distributed data management layer by utilizing chain-specific feature extraction.

Building a Bridge

PARSIQ shares the same ideology as Polkadot, which is to bridge data across a huge network of chains, leaving all chains completely equal to one another, where each chain has its own personal real-world uses and strengths. This is a model which builds strength from numbers and enhances usability by combining the entire group of chains into one strong network.

PARSIQ, rather than being a chain itself, is the bridge between the chains and between off-chain applications too. Developers can build their own smart triggers using PARSIQ. These smart triggers react to events, plus they are able to store and alter data and also to learn from the data as they grow.

The platform, in addition to monitoring data and creating alerts, can also be used to deploy bots, as well as for areas like monitoring AML, performing automated accounting, and more. Each developer’s data stream is completely unique with its own branding retaining as well as its pricing structure, even while it is growing and learning from the entire network.

PARSIQ is now integrated across all of the major blockchains, including Bitcoin, Ethereum, Binance Smart Chain, Solana, Celo, Dash, and Algorand, to give users a way to simplify the automation of all their processes and applications off-chain, on-chain, and even across Layer-2 chains.

About PARSIQ

PARSIQ’s smart triggers have far-reaching functionality, including monitoring transactions, assets are withdrawn from a user, sent to other users, transfers exceeding a pre-set level, and many more. Developers can use the PARSIQ platform to build their own smart triggers for data workflow automation, storage, and learning here:

https://portal.parsiq.net/signup

Examples of workflows include:

Alerts of DOT transactions as they happen

Bridging events in the Polkadot Relay Chain (as well as other chains) with a simple user interface

Monitor data flow and create advanced analytics from the data

Alerting to strong potential trades

Usage for traders, platforms, and market researchers to build strong, data-backed pictures of the markets.

About Polkadot

Created by one of Ethereum’s founders, Dr. Gavin Wood Polkadot’s goal is to take blockchains to a state closer to Web3, where all on-chain activity is shared across a variety of chains. It is an intersection capable of translating architecture into one heterogeneous language for customizing side chains to connect with public blockchains.

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Source: https://cryptopotato.com/parsiq-integrated-into-polkadot-for-smart-triggers-across-the-relay-chain/

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Blockchain

Raze Network Kicks Off Testnet Phase With UI Community Voting

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[PRESS RELEASE – Singapore, Singapore, 11th May 2021]

Raze Network, the first Polkadot-based privacy protocol, is bracing to engage community members with our first testnet. Early birds will be able to provide feedback on the quality, function, and overall experience of the Polkadot-based privacy protocol.

This huge milestone clears the way for ‘Razers’ and collaborators to easily test drive the newest features and allows plenty of maturation time for these new features to be fully tested.

Our team already started designing the user interface of the privacy protocol we promised to launch. However, we want to resort to the collective wisdom of our community on how to actually bring this to realization, thus launching this UI Community Voting Campaign.

The beta testnet marks the latest step forward in Raze Network’s overall mission to enable the broader community to contribute to the evolution of our trustless decentralized privacy protocol.

Raze Network’s applications present the decentralized finance (DeFi) community with a cross-chain middleware solution on Polkadot for concealing transactions when operating on decentralized exchanges.

With a clear vision and solid use-case, the protocol-based solution leverages the Polkadot ecosystem to offer the required privacy layer for the crypto sphere. The privateness protocol aims to guard anonymity for all the DeFi stack on the Polkadot.

To achieve higher participation during the testnet, Raze Network is organizing a number of events, competitions, and challenges to encourage participants to actively test critical components of our ecosystem. Specifically, we will airdrop 1,000 $RAZE tokens to 10 lucky voters based on how many entries they generated to vote for the best UI style.

$RAZE is set to be the lifeblood of the Raze Network, designed as a utility token to represent participation in the ecosystem.

The launch of Raze Network’s UI testnet comes on the heels of several other recent milestones, including a robust set of developer resources and partnerships that continues to expand.

Just in April, we announced the strategic listing of Raze token on the popular DeFi platform, Uniswap. This listing closely follows our completed triple IDO event on three launchpads.

Interestingly, apart from going live on DEX exchanges, $RAZE tokens will also soon be listed on several tier-1 centralized exchanges.

This networked testnet release allows Raze to continue working with our partners towards the mass adoption of decentralized applications and smart contracts.

Since its inception, Raze Network sought to develop an infrastructure that is easy to understand and smooth to navigate. One where even new users can reap the benefits of a cross-chain middleware solution for anonymous transactions, payments trading, and mining.

Although the token launch is done, the real work starts. Most recently, we have completed the development of mint, transfer, and redeem contracts in Solidity. Currently, we are testing how to deploy these contracts on EVM.

Also, the major front-end and client modules that can invoke the aforementioned contracts have been developed.

About Raze Network

Raze Network is a Substrate-based cross-chain privacy protocol for the Polkadot ecosystem. It is built as a native privacy layer that can provide end-to-end anonymity for the entire DeFi stack. The Raze Network applies zk-SNARKs to the Zether framework to build a second-layer decentralized anonymous module.

It will then be imported as a Substrate-based smart contract. The objective of Raze Network is to enable cross-chain privacy-preserving payment and trading systems while protecting the transparency of your assets and behaviors from surveillance.

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Source: https://cryptopotato.com/raze-network-kicks-off-testnet-phase-with-ui-community-voting/

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Blockchain

First Spot: Coinbase’s App Surpassed TikTok, Instagram, and Facebook on iOS in the US

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Coinbase’s mobile application has become the most popular app on iOS in the US. With its rise to the top, it has surpassed some highly utilized applications like TikTok, YouTube, Instagram, Facebook, and more.

Coinbase Tops US iOS Chart

According to data from SensorTower, the mobile application of the largest US crypto exchange has taken the first spot in terms of the most popular free apps on iOS in the country.

The app enabling users to buy, sell, or simply hold various digital assets has climbed with several spots in the past few weeks.

As of writing these lines, TikTok – the Chinese video-sharing social networking giant that saw the light of day in 2016 takes the second spot.

Further down the list is YouTube, followed by other social media giants like Instagram and Facebook. Interestingly, Robinhood’s app is not even in the top ten. The iOS application of the financial services company takes the 12th spot.


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It’s worth noting that the top 50 free iOS applications have two Coinbase representatives. The exchanges’ wallet app is the 46th most popular application, which places it ahead of Uber, Google Drive, and Microsoft Teams.

Coinbase’s Rise

Taking the aforementioned first spot only validates Coinbase’s popularity boost in the past year or so. The company took full advantage of the ongoing crypto bull market, which has seen prices exploding.

Consequently, the firm reported a massive increase in terms of user base, volume, and revenue in the first quarter of 2021.

These impressive results came shortly before Coinbase became a publicly traded company. As CryptoPotato reported in mid-April, the firm’s shares (COIN) launched on the giant US exchange – Nasdaq.

Although some of the early backers sold off their stocks and prices suffered in the month that followed, Coinbase only intensified its aggressive expansion. In the latest endeavor, the firm agreed to acquire Skew – the popular crypto analytics company.

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Source: https://cryptopotato.com/first-spot-coinbases-app-surpassed-tiktok-instagram-and-facebook-on-ios-in-the-us/

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