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From ARPANET To INTERNET amp BEYOND Markethive Leading The Way In Web 3 Social amp Market Media

From ARPANET To INTERNET & BEYOND

Markethive Leading The Way In Web 3 Social & Market Media

The term Web 3.0 with the benefits of its 3rd generation technology is widely considered to be the future of the internet and to break away from the centralized status quo. However, there have been heated debates of late with some claiming it will still be controlled by the venture capitalists and whales. They argue that the tech is still relatively centralized, slow, and unable to reach mass adoption. 

One of the few is the dubious Jack Dorsey, CEO of Twitter. You have to wonder what his motivation was for tweeting his opinion… 


Image source: Twitter

Dorsey’s tweet received a lot of attention, positive and negative. A lot of people in the Etherium and Defi communities bashed him for it because they viewed it as criticism aimed at Ethereum. Some also pointed out that Twitter's centralization and censorship are exactly why they're so bullish on Web 3. There are also a lot of VCS, Founders, and other crypto personalities who took issue with Jack’s statement.

In actuality, Web 3 is our best hope of breaking free from the centralized status quo and overlords. A reality where our data is harvested for profit by companies that willingly pull our access at a moment’s notice. Let’s revisit some of the histories of how the internet came to be and where we are today.

In The Beginning, The Internet Was Decentralized. 
Let’s go back in time to put it in perspective. The original internet plan was not to be centralized. In 1969, ARPANET was a project by the US Department of Defense to establish a computer data communications network that could withstand unforeseen events and disasters. Therefore, it must be decentralized so that if one part of the system fails, the rest can still function. It must be able to communicate using peer-to-peer interconnectivity without relying on a single computer. 

Initially, ARPANET benefited not just the military but also research institutes, so it had its origins in the academic community though it was a military project. The system slowly evolved, so it was not immediately adopted for commercial use. Instead, in the early 1980s, it was adopted by universities aimed at promoting research and education and was called the NSFNET project. 

The best way to do this was to use an interconnected network of computers that can provide a way to collaborate and share information. So the internet services were built on open protocols controlled by the internet community. There was no central authority, and every computer was independent of the other. If one server is not working, users can always dial up another server. 

By today’s standards, the organization of this protocol could be viewed as chaotic and inconvenient however it was decentralized. It was primarily unchartered and empty until the 1990s, before the technology pioneered by the ARPANET project became the backbone of the internet. A new galaxy of communication is ready to be explored and populated. 

Eventually, ARPANET and NSFNET would be decommissioned, thus paving the way for the commercialization of the internet. Notably, the term “Internet” was brought about by a blend of the words “interconnected” and “network” and thereby called the Internet ever since. 


Image source Hackernoon

 

From The ARPANET To The Internet. Web 1.0
In the ‘90s, Sir Tim Berners-Lee is credited with developing a linked system that became the World Wide Web with HTML and access to resources called websites. This allowed for the retrieval of all that information across the web. Web 1.0 is also called the static web and did have its limitations. It wasn’t user-friendly and was a one-way information highway. 

No algorithms could dynamically serve pages, and the web pages themselves were also elementary.

The functions that served the most purpose were email or real-time retrieval of news and the like. Users could not interact with the web pages, and applications were unheard of, so it was a Read-only internet. 

 

Web 2.0 – The Social And Centralized Internet
Around 2005 came the concept of Web 2. We saw a paradigm shift in how we used websites during this period through advancements in web technologies such as JavaScript, CSS, and HTML5. Interactive and rich websites started to increase. These web platforms would allow the user to generate their own content and be a much larger part of these websites as a whole. 

If Web 1 was a Read-only web, then Web 2 can be thought of as a Read-Write, where the users on these platforms were also fundamental to the content. As commercial interests grew along with internet use, many platforms emerged that became known as social media, and it was driven by innovations in technology, such as mobile phone apps. 

The emergence of cloud computing was also a virtual collection of servers that provided services to users. Companies that have flourished in the Web 2 environment include Facebook, now Meta, Google, YouTube, Twitter, Uber, etc.

These companies have generated trillions of dollars of value for their shareholders by effectively leveraging user data from billions of people worldwide. They've transformed the way we live our lives, from the way we order food to the way we hail rides, from the way we keep in touch to the way we pay online.

Unfortunately, society, by and large, has become overly dependent on these platforms, and when they move from “attract” to “extract,” their users, both individuals or businesses, suffer through lack of privacy and autonomy or platform risk, meaning, the platform has the power to destroy your business running on it. This conglomerate is predominantly a trillion-dollar digital advertising business, with ‘we the users’ as the product that fuels this machine. 

Essentially, Web 2 is owned by these companies, and they control the platforms and are the gatekeepers of all information. It is inherently centralized with these companies creating walled gardens of value that we can't participate in, and this is where Web 3 comes in.


Image source Hackernoon

 

So, How Centralized Is Web 2?
In order to best understand why Web 3 has so much potential, we have first to appreciate just how centralized Web 2 actually is. Currently, the web functions on what is called the client-server model. More specifically, when you want to visit a website, open a mobile app, or watch a video, you'll be requesting information from one centralized source. This is a server, and these are usually controlled by the company whose service you're using or the website you're visiting. 

This Server also contains all of the required data to make the website or service run. Data that is often comprised of our data and a centralized server controls even the process of finding that server. These are DNS or domain name service servers that act as the backbone for domain routing on the internet. Essentially, when you type a domain into your browser, the request is sent to a DNS server that will then tell your computer exactly where this information can be found. 

These DNS servers are usually controlled by another centralized group of companies including the likes of Google, AWS, Cloudflare, etc. What this means is that the internet is inherently centralized; everything that you do online, can effectively be limited by those who control those services. 

There are problems associated with this because it has a centralized point of failure; Centralized servers can go down, sometimes for extended periods of time. And in those times people can't access that data. There's not really much that you can do, given that these centralized servers contain all that user data and contain the code, which interacts with user clients, and those servers are incredibly lucrative to hack. Data theft is big business in cybercrime circles. 

You need to trust companies like Amazon that have your personal data to keep it safe. It’s a “trusted” system. There is also the risk that the data being sent to your devices could be compromised through software supply chain hacks. Hackers gain access to the provider’s server upstream of the software supply chain and insert malicious code. That's then passed down along the chain because the other participants trust that the software is safe. 

Then when it comes to the issue around the permissioned nature of Web 2, it's become a real issue when you're using services like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, PayPal, etc. You're only allowed to use them because they let you. 

They can restrict your use, or boot you off the platform at a moment's notice, without any explanation. De platforming has been going on for years now and there is very little that can be done by the user. 
 
The Web 2 social media and many Fortune 500 companies have developed their entire business models around monetizing our data. This value is not shared unless you're a shareholder. This centralization of control and value is the reason why people are dying for an alternative. 

 

Enter Web 3.0
Web 3.0 is the next generation of the internet which people envision will be more decentralized and permissionless. One that's built on decentralized protocols, where users help with content creation and the governance of the web itself. They also have the ability to own a part of the network, so you can think of it as a Read-Write-Own Internet. 

There are already several technologies that could serve as the backbone for a Web 3 world. Most point to blockchains like Elrond, Cardano, or Ethereum, for example, but other distributed technologies like  IPFS can also be used to decentralize networks. 

Thousands of dApps (decentralized applications) are already being built in the Web 3 environment. These often include native tokens to add value to the application to those who hold the tokens. These native crypto assets allow those who participate in the network to share in the value generated from it. 

Web 3 promises a decentralized alternative where we are all users, owners, and developers. This quote from Fabric Ventures sums it up beautifully, 

“Web 3.0 enables a future where distributed users and machines are able to interact with data, value, and other counterparties via a substrate of peer-to-peer networks without the need for third parties—the result: a composable human-centric & privacy-preserving computing fabric for the next wave of the web.”

 

Web 2 Verses Web 3
The main difference between Web 3 and the Web 2 era is that in Web 3, there are no centralized databases where you store the application state. In the case of blockchains, it's stored on a decentralized ledger where distributed nodes all agree on the state of the network. This article explains the architecture of Web 3 in more depth. 

The takeaway from Web 3 architecture is that the back-end infrastructure is inherently decentralized across nodes with the singular purpose of maintaining the network. If one of these nodes goes down, the network still runs. If one of these nodes is hacked, it doesn't affect the state or security of the broader network. 

Moreover, a distributed network is cryptographically secure. There is no way someone can underhandedly alter a smart contract code unless they have the keys. Any updates to the smart contract are time-stamped and immutably stored on the blockchain forever. 

The cryptographically secure nature of a decentralized blockchain means that you don't have to trust anyone with your data. You don't have to trust that they keep their service safe and that their apps won't have malicious components. The code is fully open-source and auditable for everyone to see. 

Furthermore, there is the ability to build on top and evolve to something better, as it is all open-source, with no need for third-party developer API access. What gets people so passionate about Web 3 is that you can shape the direction of these applications, and you can share in their success. Economically, Web 3 allows a system to flourish where participants can work together towards a common goal – network growth and token appreciation. 

There are pros and cons to a centralized Internet. The pros are that it has allowed the internet to expand due to the services provided by the ISP’s and also the popularity of social media platforms, convenience, and usability. 

Web 2 has transformed the way we view the world, but the cons are that it’s also enslaved us to a system that enriches a chosen few. Since it has been centralized, there is not much choice for users. A user’s access to the internet is at the mercy of their provider and the platform. This is a point of failure, not something the original internet was designed for.

 

Addressing Venture Capitalist Concerns. 
Let’s alleviate Jack Dorsey's concerns about VC money. The most reputable projects will have some reasonably strong vesting schedules for these tokens to make sure that these early-stage investors don't just dump the tokens on the open market. It serves neither the project nor the VC's purposes to trash the reputation of one of their investments by dumping on retail. 

And then, even when these tokens are unlocked, and these VCs can vote on protocol governance, they tend to have the same long-term goals as the retail investors who invest in the tokens and protocols. They want a long-term appreciation of the value of the tokens, and if they push through controversial proposals that drive down the adoption and value of the protocol, this will damage their long-term interests. 

The beauty is that everyone can share in the incentives, not just venture capitalists or shareholders. Decentralized technologies will trump the centralized status quo, whether in the case of finance with crypto or the entire internet with web 3, including social media and market networks. When a community comes together to build something that they all benefit from, it's destined to succeed.

 

Who Is Genuinely Challenging The Status Quo?
Markethive, the blockchain-driven ecosystem for entrepreneurs, has already successfully bypassed the centralized web services, like AWS and Microsoft, and operates on its own cloud system. The new login system Markethive has developed relinquished the need for 3rd party APIs that are potential vulnerabilities in Web 2 and threaten our freedoms. 

Currently, Markethive is expanding its cloud system, called Mining Hives, worldwide. This means all data about Markethive and its users will not be stored on servers owned and controlled by a centralized entity. 

Instead, it is a distributed database on the Markethive Blockchain with no single point of failure and no internet disruption or censoring by dictatorial authorities who may decide to shut off the internet. 

Web 3 gives us a better chance at building a more inclusive internet that respects all who use it. Decentralized networks can win the third era of the internet for the same reason they won the first era: by winning the hearts and minds of entrepreneurs and developers.

Web 3 is an opportunity to distribute the wealth amongst the rest of us generally paid only to shareholders. Markethive stands tall and is dedicated to delivering the emerging environment of Web 3 to its community; one of self and financial sovereignty.

Instead of acquiring a few significant venture capital investments, Markethive has made it possible for the community to obtain a stake in the company. Known as a convertible note, a small loan called an ILP is executed as a smart contract and acquired by upgrading to the early adopters' loyalty program, Entrepreneur One, for as little as $100 per month. 

For a limited time, there is a lucrative advantage to supporting Markethive with the E1 Upgrade, explained further in this blog by the CEO of Markethive. 

Markethive and Markethive Media is an international company that represents everyone and will play a prominent role in the re-invention of the social media and marketing space to preserve and nurture the entrepreneurial spirit. It’s empowering the community by integrating Blockchain and cryptocurrency in a decentralized environment. Markethive has no agenda, and its heart and soul are freedom, liberty, financial sovereignty, and entrepreneurialism. 

 

 

Also published @ Before It’s News https://beforeitsnews.com/promotional/2022/01/from-arpanet-to-internet-beyond-3020.html

Thomas Prendergast

Felix Crisan – Head Of Research For The Elrond Network And Renegade Thinker For Technical Solutions

Felix Crisan – Head Of Research For The Elrond Network And Renegade Thinker For Technical Solutions

IT Expert, Architect, Entrepreneur, Educator, with a Renegade Mindset  

 

Elrond's Head Of Research, Felix Crisan, is another feather in the cap of the evolving Romania-based Blockchain company. He is an integral part of a specialized team of hard-core engineers, entrepreneurs, and researchers, who have successfully redesigned the Blockchain infrastructure. 

Collectively, the team, including Co-founders, CIO, Lucian Mincu, and COO, Lucian Todea, has significant technical experience at Microsoft, Google, Intel, NTT DATA, 2 PhDs in CS & AI, multiple math, CS and AI, Olympiad champions, and blockchain backgrounds, with the CEO of Elrond, Beniamin Mincu previously involved with the NEM core team. In this article, Felix Crisan is center stage.

Elrond is setting new standards for performance in the Blockchain space with an innovative network scaling technology called Sharding, but with a difference. Sharding is a well-known concept for horizontal partitioning of databases which several companies are applying it to public Blockchains to increase their throughput capacity.

Elrond has gone one better by developing a cutting-edge form of state sharding named Adaptive State Sharding. It enables the network to rival centralized cloud networks without sacrificing blockchains' security and decentralization advantages. This, along with their Secure Proof of Stake consensus, makes Elrond a leader in the next generation of high-throughput Smart Contract platforms flourishing in the Blockchain ecosystem. 

 

About Felix Crisan 

Romanian-born Felix Crisan has a working experience of 20 years; all spent in Information Technology areas. Felix has been involved in many industries and in just as many roles, initially starting with being a researcher in quantitative aspects of social sciences. 

He was also a developer for "off the shelf" software and later games, then a solution consultant for major projects in big banks and telecom groups. He is an architect, supervising development and operations for the services he co-founded as an entrepreneur. These services ended up being market leaders in the territories where they are operated. 

 

Background And Career 

Felix attended the University of Bucharest, majoring in Computer Science and Mathematics in 1992, for five years. He went on to become a Computer Analyst and Chief Developer in 1997 at Cybersoft for three years.

In the next few years, he devoted his time to IBM as a Technical Solution Architect and Hewlett-Packard as a Telecom Industry Consultant. He found his entrepreneurial prowess in 2003 when he saw an opportunity to build an online and offline payment system and co-founded Netopia Payments, which operates the most prominent digital payment platform in Romania and the most extensive SMS aggregating service – web2sms.

The intersection of payments, big data, and distributed systems led him to Bitcoin and the Blockchain industry, where he Co-founded BTKO in 2015, Romania's first Bitcoin exchange platform. 

In his spare time, he teaches various topics, from fundamental web development techniques to big data concepts and technologies, including machine learning and artificial intelligence algorithms. Felix is also a Bitcoin Lightning Network contributor and organizer of Blockchain BigData meetups in Bucharest. 

 


Image source: Virtual Blockchain Summit

 

Felix Has Many Strings To His Bow

Apart from being Head of Research for Elrond, Felix is also currently the Co-founder and CTO of Netopia, mobilPay. Since April 2021, he has been co-founder and CTO of Ronin, a Bucharest-based Blockchain crowdfunding platform officially launched in December 2021 and accessible to small investors in Europe. The company's end goal is to be bureaucracy-free. 

In all of Felix's undertakings, it's clear that his solution-oriented concepts and input are designed with a humanitarian approach. He is passionate about new and innovative technologies and how they can enhance the lives of individuals and companies alike. 

With his fiery tweets regarding burning issues and aversion to the status quo, bankers and governments, he is doing his bit to help educate and improve the current state of the world. His Twitter feed indeed reveals that, tweeting:

So much double standards around CBDC initiatives: with "the others" it can be used to "…monitor users and exert control over global currency". When "our guys" are doing it, it's a fine piece of non-intrusive, democratic tech.

“The root and source of all monetary evil is the government’s monopoly on money,” said no banker ever. But Hayek did.

Who is Hayek? Hayek was a prominent social theorist and political philosopher of the 20th century, devoted to the free market. Friedrich Hayek believed that the prosperity of society was driven by creativity, entrepreneurship, and innovation, which were possible only in a society with free markets. In his view, markets create price signals and incentives to adapt and align the economy efficiently.


Image source: Twitter 

 

To understand more about what Felix Crisan is passionate about, watch this video where he discusses a wide range of topics, including adoption in Romania, custodial services and their disadvantages, the impact crypto will have on employment and value transfer, and China's crackdown on miners, the CBDC Yuan, regulatory burdens for Romanian crypto startups and more. 

 

Elrond Initiates Web3 Payment Revolution

Elrond's latest partnership with Utrust (a leading payment services provider) is another indication of their commitment and passion for leading in the digital transformation curve and easing the burden of businesses and existing payment methods. 

Dubbed "Merchant Yield," the power comes from its simplicity – accept crypto, and get paid in fiat. Any business can become a Web 3 Merchant and benefit as this will transform payment processing services from a cost for merchants into an income stream.


Image source: Twitter 

 

A Blessing For Humanity

With Elrond's consistent activity and the team's unwavering dedication, we can be assured they are in it for the long game and for the right reasons. A few benevolent companies are rising up and will not be intimidated by the elite corporations so desperately trying to control everything and everyone. 

Markethive aligns itself very closely with the ethos of Elrond. They are two separate entities working in synergy and independent of evil forces that have plagued the lives of the individuals, entrepreneurs, and companies that are locked into them. 

Elrond takes care of the decentralized Internet-scale Blockchain and financial operating system, the gateway for all businesses and citizens to reclaim their sovereignty and financial independence. 

Elrond is a complete rethinking of public blockchain infrastructure, specifically designed to be secure, efficient, scalable, and interoperable. Elrond's main contribution rests on two cornerstone building blocks that ensure long-term security and distributed fairness.

 

 

Markethive takes care of the decentralized social media, marketing, broadcasting network, and community. It is a place where privacy, freedom of speech, and autonomy are paramount. There is no agenda, no divisiveness, just acceptance. 

Markethive is a place where entrepreneurs can thrive, and individuals can feel a sense of belonging. It is a platform with the inbuilt opportunity for financial sovereignty, all without fear of being deplatformed, censored, or ridiculed.

We pay homage to the architects and engineers of these humanitarian projects that stand up in the face of tyranny and make it possible for every soul to have a haven and faith for a better, more sovereign future. 

It's not enough these days to be a critical thinker – one must be a renegade thinker to resist and rise above this unconscionable world, be true to oneself and be instrumental in the success of others.

As Felix Crisan states in his tweet,
"Everyone's afraid of the World War 3, but few noticed the War Web 3." 

 

 

References:
Elrond
Twitter
LinkedIn
Virtual Blockchain Summit 

 

 

Thomas Prendergast

Lucian Todea Co-Founder And COO Of Elrond And Maiar -The Serial Entrepreneur And Humanitarian

Lucian Todea Co-Founder And COO Of Elrond And Maiar – The Serial Entrepreneur And Humanitarian

The Serial Entrepreneur And Humanitarian Improving And Enriching People’s Lives.

Completing the trinity of co-founders at Elrond is Lucian Todea, bringing his skill set to the table serving as Chief Operating Officer (COO). He is the epitome of entrepreneurship and an active investor in startups and the Blockchain space, with more than 15 years of experience in technology-related businesses. This article will highlight Lucian Todea’s achievements and essential role at Elrond.

Who Is Lucian Todea?

Lucian Todea is an entrepreneur, angel investor, and technology industry executive with significant experience spanning operational practice, business development, general management, and leadership. With his international savoir-faire, he has many accolades to his name.

Working alongside Beniamin Mincu and Lucian Mincu, he complements the humanitarian ethos embedded in the Elrond culture and narrative.

Passionately cited by Lucian Todea,

“Technology was never about technology, but about improving and enriching people’s lives.” 


Image source: oradesibiu.ro

Lucian Todea’s Background And Career

Lucian Todea is from Sibiu, Romania, and attended The Bucharest University of Economic Studies for three years from 1999, specializing in Finance, Insurance, Banking, and Stock Exchange. In 2001, at the age of 21, Lucian launched his first website as a student, initially called softrom.ro, and was addressed exclusively to the online market in Romania. 

"I created Soft32.com out of passion and just to ensure an extra income during my student days, the initial investment being only $ 3 a month, which is the Internet connection subscription. I started with 200 programs, and now the number theirs is 100 times bigger ", stated Lucian Todea.

The portal was later renamed Soft32.com, and the English version was created to attract users globally. In 2002, Lucian decided to drop University to build and expand the Soft32 distribution platform. 

It consists of many software applications (freeware, trial, or shareware) for Windows PC and Linux, Unix, Mac, or Apple users. It is one of the most popular download platforms in the world. It has since become internationally renowned, and at its high point, Soft32 listed more than 150,000 apps and was visited by more than 10,000,000 users each month. 

As a result, Lucian took the first step towards entrepreneurship in 2003, launching the company ITNT, and is the company behind Soft32. After only three years of existence, ITNT has become one of the leading companies of its kind in the region. 

According to the Business Directory of Romania (2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012), it is “a big player in the economy.” In 2014, and 2016, it was acknowledged by Deloitte Technology Fast 50 as one of the fastest-growing technology startups in the Middle East, Africa, and Europe, respectively. 

Lucian Todea- The Serial Entrepreneur and Angel Investor

Lucian is a serial tech entrepreneur and is actively involved in various other technology and blockchain projects. He is either a founder or partner in technology startups such as mobile payments (Mobilpay), travel (Travelgator), and mobile advertising (Mobaba).

As an angel investor, he invested in several companies, including;

  • Smartbill – The most used Romanian invoicing and accounting SaaS platform.
  • TypingDNA – (Techstars NYC'18 Company) offering typing biometrics and 2FA solutions for securing devices and web applications. 
  • Homefresh – The pioneer meal kit delivery service.
  • MPV Fund – A micro-financing business angel fund that targets the best tech startups in Romania. 

He is also a mentor, advisor, and member of MVP Academy, MVP Angels, TechAngels, VentureConnect, How to Web/Startup Spotlight, InnovationLabs, etc., and states on ICO Bench, “On my way to unlock the best version of myself.”

 


Image source: Turnul Sfatulu News

Lucian Todea – The Ironman

As Lucian was wholeheartedly focused on his career for many years, there was little time or inclination for exercise or sports. Twenty years prior, he was adept at swimming and athletics, but being sedentary for an extended period brought about a fundamental change, and in 2015, he decided to participate in marathons. 

Lucian became addicted to exercise again after successfully finishing a half marathon in 2015. He then competed and finished in the Half-Ironman in Barcelona in 2016 and went to the full Ironman in 2017 in Austria. 

From the time he ran his first marathon, it rekindled his love for sports, and it became clear to him he needed to keep moving and take on new challenges, more extensive and harder to reach. 

In a 2017 interview, Lucian said that the idea of preparing for something that seemed impossible was enough to motivate him to start training for Half-Ironman, then for Ironman. 

When asked how does he find the time, Lucian replied,

“Once exercise and sports are part of your daily routine, and you get to enjoy what you do, finding time is not such a big deal. Priorities change much easier if we really want to find the time.”


Image Source: Twitter 

Lucian is very active on Twitter and LinkedIn, keeping his followers updated with the latest acquisitions and partners to the Elrond Network, with a strong focus on The Maiar DEX and Maiar digital wallet and global payments app. 

Lucian Todea – The Empath

Although he is a lover and architect of emerging technology, his empathy towards the human factor drives him to create a human-centered system of self-sovereignty, data, and privacy protection. – A simple design and protocol for the regular person to understand and easy to use: the fewer steps one needs to perform, the better. 

Today, in our techno world, the internet and smartphones have become an essential part of living, but cyber security is an escalating problem that is alarming and overwhelming for most. Plus, the data giants relentlessly mine, harvest, and track users throughout their entire online experience and their movements in the physical world through the use of their mobile devices.

Free to use social media companies are renowned data-giants that control immense monopolized silos of user data valued at trillions of dollars of market capitalization of which is auctioned off to the highest bidder with little concern of how the information could be ultimately used to commit identity theft, stalking, or industrial espionage.  

Lucian believes the problem with the current status quo is that so few of the general populace understand the technology they are using. He believes education is key to expanding the technical literacy of the general public, so citizens can have a basic understanding of how the technologies around them operate. Not just so that they can use these tools to their full advantage but also so that others cannot take advantage of their technological ignorance and harm them. 

Lucian cited in his article,

“We have a literacy problem around the world, and it’s not the one most think of. It is the problem of technical literacy. In a world replete with gadgets, algorithms, computers, wearables, RFID chips, and smartphones, only a minute portion of the general population has any idea how these objects actually work.

Those who know how to code will hold power over those who don’t in the same way that those who could not read and write in the last centuries found their opportunities limited.” 

Elrond and Maiar address the issue designers of security products and systems have when communicating with their users. It’s a matter of having an intrinsic understanding of how people interact with computers and smartphones.  Lucian opines that new opportunities for innovation open up when you start the creative problem-solving process with empathy toward your target audience.

In the video below, Lucian Todea introduces the Maiar smartphone app designed to be simple and a completely reimagined way to interact with money. 

Lucian emphasizes, 

“We, at Maiar and Elrond, envision a future where your login is your wallet, that encapsulates your digital identity (and aliases), protecting your privacy by default and by design through a combination of multifactor authentication and biometrics and blockchain security and crypto-economics mechanisms.” 

Transitioning To A More Sovereign Web 3.0

Blockchain technology is the underlying infrastructure of cryptocurrencies and distributed data systems. The technology makes it possible to achieve a sovereign and autonomous landscape, and decentralized identity, not controlled by a centralized authority rampant with surveillance techniques, data harvesting, and tyrannical censorship. 

Lucian Todea and his team at Elrond and Maiar are committed to bringing an uncomplicated user interface, economic incentives, and a new wave of applications built focusing on empowering privacy and agency by default for every individual. Maiar and Elrond stand as foundational layers to accelerate the transition and be an active part of the solution. 

To transition to a new web era and solve the fundamental issues currently plaguing existing platforms, there needs to be a change in the basic structures we have in place, enabling a shift to more human-centric computing and the rise of the sovereign individual.

Lucian states,

“The rise of the sovereign individual can be achieved through a decentralized identity, the general idea being that users could store identity information on the blockchain, and their permission would be required for third parties to access it. This stands in contrast to the status quo, where data is held at countless third parties and regularly obtained without the user’s knowledge, much less consent. 

Permission-less programmability, compounding programmable and economic incentives, and strong underlying network effects governing blockchain architectures are the key elements that can be the building blocks of a new, better, and safer web. While it may be impossible to “live off the grid” in today’s modern world, we can, by all means, design a system that is much more protective.”

 

Claiming Back Our Privacy And Sovereignty

Both Elrond, as an internet-scale Blockchain and Markethive, the blockchain-driven social media, marketing, and broadcasting network for entrepreneurs, is concerned for those who suffer the economic and social harms from leaked data and lack of ownership of proprietary content. 

The massive amounts of data and information garnered by the tech giants have enormous consequences for the user. Information is being used in ways not disclosed initially or even worse to control our behavior and decisions. 

They say it’s to give us a better user experience. In fact, Facebook, Google, et al. are incentivized to gather an escalating amount of personally identifiable data and sell to thousands of data brokers globally at a profit. That is their business model, which is totally incongruent with public safety and security.

The immense amount of data they collect is worth much more than any advertising revenue and predominantly why engaging on their social media platforms is free to the user. A huge but precarious tradeoff, and for the tech giant, it’s all about the money and control. 

The interesting thing is that it’s estimated that each Facebook user worldwide only generates about $32 in ad revenue for the company per year. Why not send Facebook $32 in ad revenue? Then they could leave us alone. We could just as easily support internet companies or platforms with the goal to store as little personal data of ours as possible in exchange for small sums of cash or crypto. 

There is a fundamental mismatch between the fact that a central entity captures almost the entire value created by the community of users and that these users don’t receive any financial upside in return.

The risk of emerging digital dictatorships in which all power is concentrated in the hands of a few central entities is higher than ever. The critical thinkers want to prevent a dystopian future of surveillance capitalism and politics capable of knowing us better than ourselves and influencing our decisions. Plus, the centralized servers may withdraw their internet access to any company or individual that doesn’t maintain their narrative. 

The solution and key are to bypass the centralized entities with a blockchain-driven distributed database capable of minting cryptocurrency, thereby creating an ecosystem for the community. Empowering users with their own data and ways to earn crypto with applications built upon decentralized data networks will increase trust between the individual and the platform.  

This is precisely what Lucian Todea is working towards, along with the team at Elrond. Thanks to technology and humanitarian-centered architects creating a more sovereign and straightforward system for the people, platforms like Markethive and its community can exist and thrive, empowering the individual and keeping the entrepreneurial spirit alive, which is being eradicated by the ever-increasing dictatorship of the centralized overlords. 

 

References;
LinkedIn
Twitter
Maiar
Everipedia
Turnul Sfatului

 

 

Thomas Prendergast

Lucian Mincu Co-Founder And CIO Of Elrond – The Architect Scholar Creating The Next Wave Of The Internet Economy

Lucian Mincu Co-Founder And CIO Of Elrond – The Architect Scholar Creating The Next Wave Of The Internet Economy

Elrond has a distinct advantage of having a team of professionals with both technical and entrepreneurial backgrounds. Beniamin Mincu had the spotlight in my previous article covering Elrond, highlighting his entrepreneurial skills by working with Blockchain start-ups and leading the marketing, business, and community-building efforts in his career. Today we’ll give center stage to his brother Lucian Mincu, the man and hardcore engineer behind the complex infrastructure of Elrond.  

 
Who Is Lucian Mincu?

Lucian Mincu is a Co-founder and Chief Information Officer (CIO) at Elrond. He is an infrastructure engineer with experience designing and implementing complex infrastructure and network architecture. He has been developing integrated products and network solutions for major corporate clients, including the German government, for over eight years. 

Lucian is a strong advocate of breakthrough technologies and believes that Blockchain integration should only happen if it creates real value, giving anyone anywhere easy access to the digital economy by bringing a 1000x improvement in blockchain speed, scale, cost, and user experience.  

 

Lucian Mincu’s Background And Career

Lucian studied Computer Science at Industrie- und Handleskammer (Chamber of Commerce and Industry). He started his career working as an IT consultant in Sibiu, Romania, in 2010, where he assisted a broad customer base in solving issues related to PCs, Laptops, Workstations, Mobile devices, and Printing Devices. He also provided Web Administration and Web Mastering solutions using Python, HTML, PHP, XML, CSS, and JavaScript.

In June 2012, he joined Unhrenwerk24 UG, Ingolstadt, Germany, as a CTO, where he was responsible for creating and implementing sales strategies on end-to-end business solutions. He also worked closely with the management team on important subjects.

Lucian then worked as an IT System Engineer at Cetto Services GmBhIn in March 2014. His primary focus was on designing complete bottom-up infrastructures for optimized customer solutions. He was also in charge of the entire infrastructure for more than 20 education institutions.

Lucian Mincu joined LIEBL SYSTEMS GmbH in December 2016 as a Senior IT Security Consultant and Project Management. He was in charge of the infrastructure of several big institutions across the German State. 

Lucian entered the blockchain space in 2016, where he and his brother Beniamin Mincu founded Metachain Capital and ICO Market Data and served as Chief technology officer till December 2017. He is currently a Co-Founder at Elrond Network, along with his brother, Beniamin Mincu and Lucian Todea. 

Lucian says,

“Great products are built by exceptional teams & communities.
Exceptional does not only mean great tech but, more importantly, the ability to remain resolute under significant pressure, putting in all efforts needed to overcome challenges.
Onwards & upwards.”

Lucian is not one for producing videos; he leaves that to the entrepreneurs of the company. However, he is very active on Twitter with 64.7K followers. He constantly updates the community with Elrond’s progress and up-to-the-minute integrations and tech as it happens. 

He is loved for his timely updates and ability to communicate all things Elrond transparently. He indeed excels at his role of Chief Information Officer, resulting in an exciting, face-paced unprecedented Blockchain project and community growing exponentially. 


Image source: Twitter

Furthermore, the Elrond Network has a very active community on GitHub. GitHub is where millions of developers and companies build, ship, and maintain their software and is considered the largest and most advanced development platform globally.

 

Elrond Community

The size and enthusiasm of a community can directly impact the awareness and adoption of a cryptocurrency project, affecting marketing and general trading volumes. Elrond’s Telegram Community has over 53K members and is highly engaged. Elrond’s communication abilities and transparency are exceptional and are good reasons why it generates so much interest.

Mainstream is becoming much more aware of cryptocurrency and the future impact on society, but the majority find it difficult to comprehend or utilize the complex technology. The Elrond team saw this obstacle to massive global adoption and designed the tokenomics and utility to help the average person grasp the concept. 

One of Elrond’s primary goals is to make the interface clean and easy to understand, making it as stress-free as possible for new user adoption. They have succeeded with the Maiar mobile dApp, which, unlike many new dApps, was fully developed at launch with very few bugs and has been positively received from the start. 

It is also called the “gateway to the unbanked,” noting that “A large population of the world is unbanked, without access to the existing financial infrastructure, and so their opportunities to participate in wealth creation are extremely limited.”

 

What Fuels The Elrond Economy?

eGold, (ELGD) is the native token created by the Elrond team and is the core of all internal usage in the Elrond ecosystem. They went further by designing it to create a substantial store of value, similar to physical gold, but with functionality that could make it superior to gold in the long run.

Creating the ticker symbol beginning with the ‘e’ prefix makes cryptocurrency more intuitive and easier to understand. Plus, it creates a logical and consistent foundation for future digital assets and currencies.

Inherent in the design of EGLD is the preface for the Elrond network to be compatible with other cryptocurrencies and with fiat currencies issued by governments. Eventually, all will be able to tap into Elrond’s immense bandwidth capabilities and offer ways to transfer value electronically.

 

Elrond And NFTs

Not surprisingly, Lucian Mincu was the first of the Elrond Team to become an NFT. Thanks to a gifted NFT sketch artist, Elrond Memer, with a love for the Elrond Network, created a life-like sketch of Lucian. It was minted on the Elrond Blockchain with the highest bidder to receive the original piece of artwork as well.  


Image courtesy of Elrond Memer & emoon.space

 

Conclusion

The Elrond Network has continuously progressed for four years and has joined the mainstream blockchain projects. The fact that Binance Launchpad backed the project indicates Elrond was thoroughly vetted by Binance and found to be a solid project. 

With the unique Adaptive State Sharding and Secure Proof of Stake, the project delivers the speed and scalability that hasn’t been seen in many projects. Also, the support for multiple smart contract languages is integral for Elrond’s move into the decentralized application space.

The team is highly-motivated, energetic, and very competent, with a deep skillset. They have outperformed, hitting deadlines and delivering as promised, and this alone is valuable in the blockchain space. 

Lucian Mincu communicating with the Elrond community about the inner workings and keeping them updated is paramount and evokes enthusiasm leading to massive adoption and scalability, all of which Elrond is equipped to handle. 

Stay tuned for more news about the team and the Elrond network as it makes headway as a highly scalable, fast, and secure blockchain platform for distributed apps, enterprise use cases like Markethive, and the new internet economy.

 

 

References: 
Elrond.com
Twitter
LinkedIn
Everipedia
CoinBureau

 

Thomas Prendergast

FIRST IN 100 DECENTRALIZED SOCIAL MARKET MEDIA – GIANT BLOCKCHAIN CRYPTO PROJECT

 

FIRST IN 100% DECENTRALIZED SOCIAL MARKET MEDIA – GIANT BLOCKCHAIN CRYPTO PROJECT 

HVC is poised to triumph in the crypto economy.

Cryptocurrencies have many use cases. Some act as a store of value, others power blockchain to make it possible to create trustless digital contracts and permissionless decentralized applications. Some cryptocurrencies are pegged to fiat currency allowing for stable transfers of value, and some underpin protocols that offer decentralized data storage and video streaming. 

Each of these use cases requires a particular set of blockchain attributes and economic incentives. Many say that there is no single cryptocurrency project that can do it all; however, there is one that comes very close in a field that has been, for the most part, put in the too-hard basket by the majority. 

Who Dares Wins 

Markethive is a monolithic blockchain project currently operating as a social network, an entire inbound marketing platform with email, blogging, and digital media capabilities that broadcast to the vast internet. It’s a complete Market Network and the first of its kind. 

Markethive is predominantly a free system where users can access a platform that can cost more than $2,500 offered by other marketing platforms. There are, of course, upgrades that open up more tools and monetization opportunities, the first being the Entrepreneur One Loyalty Program, and coming soon is the Premium Upgrade

The many domains Markethive has and its autonomous cloud systems that ensure its sovereignty and longevity make it untouchable and immune from the tech giants’ rule and biased agenda. But can still remotely infiltrate the social media platforms and reach the multitudes either locked in or looking for an alternative meritocratic medium.

In other words, wherever you go, Markethive is there, anywhere and everywhere, delivering its message via its community of entrepreneurs to a far-reaching audience. This next-generation social market media is poised in the wings, and when the time is right, it will emerge as a shining light to lift people up and bring financial sovereignty and hope in this gloomy and uncertain world.  

The video platform, conference rooms, the unique four specific news feeds currently in development, and many other projects and incentives add to the credibility and need for an ecosystem in the social media and digital marketing space. 

In 2018, Markethive released its coin, with the ticker symbol of MHV that enabled the distribution of the coin to the members within the Markethive system by way of infinity airdrops and subsequently a micropayment faucet. The coin is currently in the process of being labeled with a new name, HiveCoin, with the ticker symbol HVC. 

Now in the final stages of BETA, Markethive will officially launch with the release of its first wallet developed from scratch to service the community’s needs. This is Markethive’s internal web wallet, with the end goal of a wallet app accessible from your smartphone (external wallet) that includes built-in messaging, news feeds, e-commerce, conference rooms, etc., with the highest security measures. 

Meanwhile, the growing user base is accumulating their native coins, Hivecoin (HVC), in anticipation of the release when they transact using HVC within the Markethive system and externally.

What Sets The Markethive Coin (HVC) Apart?

The Markethive platform enables the users to earn HiveCoin cryptocurrency with everything they do and are paid for their loyalty. The Vault is an innovative concept that allows Markethive members to stake their coins, similar to a bank account. The more coins held in your vault, the higher the micropayments received, and then there’s the monthly interest paid to you based on the number of coins in your coin clip.

The company issues these micropayments, incentives, and rewards, not just the users, which is commonplace and the only form of payment in other crypto-based platforms. However, Markethive has a tipping protocol the people can utilize and substitutes the like button. 

It isn’t only a social media network or inbound marketing platform; it lends itself to the cottage industry concept allowing members to monetize the various initiatives Markethive is developing, starting the Banner Impressions Exchange. It’s also where entrepreneurs can facilitate and promote their personal businesses to a built-in audience as well as a springboard to the far regions of the internet. 

In Markethive’s all-encompassing ecosystem, the objective of the Markethive coin (HVC) is to be utilized as a form of payment rather than just selling it (pump and dump scenario). This gives a purpose and actual use case for HVC, equalizing the velocity and increasing coin value. 

Bitcoin has established itself as a store of value that affects the value of most other altcoins, albeit positively or negatively at any given time. However, if a coin or project’s use case and utility are credible, it can result in a parabolic shift, increasing in price, without riding on Bitcoin’s coattails. 

 

The Markethive Blockchain 

Markethive is currently situated on the Ethereum Blockchain while in BETA. However, Markethive aims to utilize a 3rd generation Blockchain developed by Cardano and Elrond. These Blockchain protocols have the advanced capabilities to produce the distributed database system Markethive requires. 

This ensures that all data that the extensive user base inherently creates in a social media environment is decentralized and safely integrated and stored on the blockchain, including all forms of content, videos, images, etc.

It is considered a  mammoth task for a blockchain and not conducive for an established social media platform like Facebook with its trillions upon trillions of data already in its system. Markethive conceived and initiated this blockchain protocol, making it easier to integrate. We just had to wait for the right technology to surface.  

Thanks to technology evolution, the Markethive social market network’s ability to build a massive database management blockchain can only be done on a 3rd generation blockchain platform like Cardano or Elrond. The Markethive blockchain will be forked off the 3rd generation blockchain, with HVC being a native token, a fungible multi-asset token. 

Native tokens represent value and act as an accounting unit, which can be used for payments and transactions and sent to an exchange address. Native means that these tokens are supported by the main chain’s accounting ledger without the need for additional smart contracts, as the ledger features built-in support to track ownership and transfer of more than one type of asset.

Ethereum blockchain issues tokens through a custom coded smart contract, which issues a non-native token. This token won't have all the advantages of Ethereum, and you have to pay for smart contract execution every time you move your token. This is why people complain about Ethereum fees being so high. It's not very efficient, leaving the door open for human error when coding smart contracts.

The low cost in transactional fees and the increased throughput into the thousands make the Cardano and Elrond blockchains a favorite in future generation blockchains. A sustainable, scalable financial operating system is becoming a reality. 

 

HiveCoin And ILP Smart Contracts – The Markethive Ecosystem

The Markethive  ILP smart contracts that the entrepreneurs have recognized as valuable and acquired will work seamlessly in the background on the Markethive blockchain forked off a 3rd generation blockchain. At the same time, the HiveCoin (HVC) will be used as a medium of exchange and will continually be circulating, earned, and accumulated by users within the Markethive economy.

It allows us to be completely decentralized financially with complete autonomy and protection of our intellectual property, ascertaining a viable and comprehensive ecosystem. This bodes exceptionally well for the Markethive ecosystem and benefits all participating in it. 

Essentially the Markethive ecosystem will have its own financial operating system within the new global financial operating system or future of internet money envisioned by the architects of the emerging technology, strides ahead of the initial technology of Bitcoin and Ethereum.  

Markethive – Staunch And Benevolent Vision

Markethive’s vision is a fully decentralized social network inbound marketing platform integrated and operated on a massively distributed database system, the internal giant blockchain, controlled by a smaller external blockchain Markethive’s Dapp wallet will utilize. 

This is a very advanced technology Markethive is integrating at which no other platform is doing or will attempt to do. It is a vast undertaking and needs to be done right so security is not compromised, on all levels, hence the methodical and time-consuming approach. Markethive is incomparable to any other media platform and, although touted it that couldn’t be done, is 90% done. 

It’s about looking after the community, the products and projects, the use, and the utility. Getting it right, being clever and evolutionary will pay huge dividends in the mid to long term for everyone in the ecosystem. Markethive is always focused on where we are going and why we are going there in the mission, giving economic sovereignty and identity to all, especially those that don’t have it. 

I know it’s hard to get your head around. Most people don’t comprehend what we have in our midst with Markethive but rest assured, this gigantic all-in-one platform current flying under the radar will be a life-changing positive force of how we work, earn, and socialize online. 

Come to our Sunday meetings at 10 am MST as we approach massive major upgrades and be the first to know about it. See and hear explanations, ask questions, and witness the ever-evolving technology and concepts of Markethive as we stay one step ahead of tyrannical technocrats.  The link to the meeting room is located in the Markethive Calendar. See ya there.

 

 

 

Thomas Prendergast

Beniamin Mincu Of Elrond – Bio And Vision For The Future Of Money

Beniamin Mincu Of Elrond – Bio And Vision For The Future Of Money

A Visionary That Will Define The Next Wave Of The Internet Economy

Who Is Beniamin Mincu?

Beniamin Mincu is an entrepreneur, investor, and Blockchain pioneer born in Romania with a vision to reshape economies, opening an era of unparalleled opportunity on a global scale. Beniamin (also pronounced Benjamin) is a humanitarian with his heart in the right place and the Co-founder and CEO of the Elrond Network

Beniamin undertakes to accelerate the onset of a high-bandwidth, open, permissionless, globally accessible financial system. The dedication of Elrond’s diverse team of engineers and researchers that have a wide range of technical experience and significant Blockchain expertise is bringing this vision to life. 

 

Beniamin Mincu’s Background

Beniamin is from Sibiu County in Romania, where he attended the German University of Sibiu, Romania. He studied at the Faculty of Economic Sciences and graduated with a Bachelor's degree in Economics and Management in 2011. He was certified by the University of Toronto in the Learn to Program: The Fundamentals in 2013.

His accomplishments include courses in Business ethics, Finance, Logistics, Macroeconomics, Management, Marketing, Microeconomics, Production Management, Project Management, Quality Management, Statistics, Strategic Management. 

Beniamin is fluent in three languages – English, German, and Romanian. He is celebrated for his critical thinking skills, creativity, leadership, pleasant disposition, and ability to deliver on his commitments. His passion for economic empowerment, education, poverty alleviation, science, and technology drives him to continue his project to reshape the economy gradually. 

 
Beniamin’s First Encounter And Inspiration With Crypto 

What inspired Beniamin Mincu to become involved in the cryptocurrency space?  In 2012 he initially stumbled across Bitcoin. By 2013, he found the whole concept of Cryptocurrency extremely intriguing as he saw the economic aspect. 

He started researching technologies he thought were capable of changing the dynamics of the economy and entire society. Once he understood the economics of Bitcoin, he could clearly see that it would reshape the economy.

 

Career And Noble Endeavors  

In 2014, Beniamin joined the NEM.io core team to help solve the issues he saw in Bitcoin. Since then, he recognized ongoing problems with Bitcoin, specifically scalability, and set out to remedy these obstacles that would stifle any meaningful mainstream adoption. 

Beniamin studied many different technologies that he thought would have a high impact on the future of humanity. He has been involved in several aspects of the Blockchain space building, supporting and investing in around 30 different startups, including Icon, Matrix, and Zilliqa.

In 2016, Beniamin founded MetaChain Capital along with his brother Lucian Mincu and took on the role of CEO. MetaChain Capital was an investment firm that supported several Blockchain projects, including Binance, BAT, Tezos, and Polkadot, when they were in the startup phase. They became very successful and are placed in the top 100 projects on coinmarketcap.

In 2017, his sole focus was Elrond, building a hard-core team who he says can “literally build rockets.” Elrond, an ambitious project that aims to solve some of the most pressing challenges in the Blockchain and crypto space. 

Notably, the name of the company, Elrond, was inspired by the character in the book and movie, Lord Of The Rings, who is portrayed to be immortal, superpowerful, with a purpose to do good in the world, and was considered a great aspiration by the founders of Elrond to aim for and bring light into the Blockchain and crypto industry.


Image Source: Twitter 

 

Elrond – The Next Wave Of The Internet

Beniamin’s diverse background in state-of-the-art technology, applied philosophy, engineering, and Blockchain has culminated in creating a company that could very well define the next wave of the internet.

The elegant and sophisticated technology developed by the Elrond team is targeted at developers, the broader public, and enterprises. Developers can create decentralized applications and run smart contracts on the Elrond blockchain network, and the wider public can use Elrond as a user-friendly gateway to the digital economy. 

Also, businesses seeking an enterprise solution that can lower transactional costs with benefits such as speed, security, and scalability will find Elrond Blockchain particularly useful. Such as emerging Web 3 companies building ecosystems with their cryptocurrency in the social media and digital marketing sphere that need an internet-scale blockchain to accommodate its massive user-base and ecommerce.  


Image source: https://elrond.com/

The whole basis of the Elrond Network is to build a global, transparent, non-inflationary financial system giving anyone, anywhere, easy access to this new economic system. In July 2020, we saw the launch of Elrond’s Mainnet, with Beniamin Mincu announcing;

“Years from now, we will look back at this moment, as the instrumental transition from a promising but experimental technology, to one of the most important technologies of the decades that followed.”

More recently, we had the release of Elrond’s Maiar DEX. “This represents a massive step toward pushing DeFi adoption beyond the current boundaries of the crypto space, into the mainstream,” said Beniamin. 

With Elrond’s Adaptive Sharding, a method of parallelizing data and transactions processing, Elrond’s performance will scale up with the number of computers joining the network, reaching more than 100,000 transactions per second while growing increasingly decentralized.

Paraphrasing Beniamin’s comments in the video posted below, these performance measures and protocols are not promises for the future, like so many other projects. They are already processing 15,000 transactions per second, with 6 seconds block time at a transaction cost of $0.001. They can scale beyond 100,000 and have achieved 260,000 TPS in the testnet phase. 

He explains that after ten years, the approximate average TPS of the Bitcoin blockchain is still about 5, while Ethereum can handle about 15. We need to move beyond this to change the course of humanity and the future of money. 

Elrond, as described by Coingecko

“Elrond aims to build a high-throughput blockchain that aspires to build the next internet-scale blockchain. Recognizing that most scalability efforts by other projects are not sufficient in that the efforts are merely “kicking the can down the road,” Elrond set out to create a blockchain that is capable of 1000x throughput than most existing blockchains. This improvement of transaction throughput allows Elrond to handle even the most aggressive wave of user adoption.”

 

Beniamin Mincu, CEO of Elrond on the Future of Money and Reinventing the Internet

Courtesy of Blockworks

 

Romanian Roots And Ethos 

According to the Romanian Business Review, diversity, innovation, and enthusiasm are the most common ingredients of the Romanian entrepreneur and start-ups. Many businesses impressed the BR team, mainly because of their founders’ entrepreneurial behavior, vision, and strategy.

“Romanians are smart,” a caption made famous by an advertising agency and was a gift celebrating Romania’s National Day in 2011. Their contribution was awarded a Cannes Lion Trophy for the campaign in 2016.

The Romanians have a lot to be proud of and are renowned for their sports athletes, creativity, and hospitality. Adding to that, their presence in the technology space with a philosophical approach to go beyond and make a real impact on humanity. 

Markethive has a robust presence in Romania and shares the same ethos. Markethive’s team of engineers is situated there, working tirelessly to bring Markethive’s vision to fruition. It is a vision that brings freedom, liberty, and financial sovereignty to all and transcends the evil that is overwhelming social media with its technocracy.     

Beniamin Mincu and his team at Elrond, with their innovative, evolving technology, will make it possible for the Markethive community to thrive in this stagnant, if not devolving world. God speed to Beniamin Mincu, Elrond, and Markethive. 

 

 

References: 
elrond.com
LinkedIn
Everipedia
Brandminds
Messari

 

Also published @ Before It’s News https://beforeitsnews.com/science-and-technology/2021/12/beniamin-mincu-of-elrond-bio-and-vision-for-the-future-of-money-3003471.html

 

Thomas Prendergast

Inequality? Or Just A Fact Of Life?

Inequality? Or Just A Fact Of Life?

How Do The Rich Get Even Richer? 

I think most of us have heard the saying, “the rich get richer, while the poor get poorer.” And the rich keep getting richer mainly because many are paying little in the way of taxes, if anything at all. How is this possible? What are the brazen loopholes and tricks that the 1% use to stay ahead and continue to gain wealth?   

Over the years, there has been much discussion, studies, and headlines around a billionaires tax and what it means for us non-billionaires. So why is there all this talk about billionaires and taxes in the US once again? 

Well, that's for two key reasons. Firstly, the policymakers in Washington are trying to go after this class of people with new tax proposals to help fund the American Families Plan.

The other fundamental reason it’s back in the spotlight is the amount of wealth accumulated over the last decade by specific individuals. And their wealth has been taxed at extraordinarily low rates. 


Image Source: Lisa Larson-Walker/ProPublica

Thanks to the Secret IRS files, the data was recently brought to light, essentially a leak of tax information that ProPublica covered in June. The leak contained vast troves of IRS data on the tax returns of thousands of the nation's wealthiest people covering more than 15 years. 

The Secret IRS Files

This report uncovered some of the most Illuminating stats of people like Mark Zuckerberg, Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, Warren Buffett, etc. From 2014 to 2018, the 25 richest Americans increased their wealth by a collective $401 billion.

However, they only paid taxes of $13.6 billion during that period, equating to an effective rate of about 3.4%. Crazy, right? And if we were to drill down into some of the richest of this rich list, the numbers get even crazier. 

The illustration below shows the taxes paid on wealth growth for Buffett, Bezos, Bloomberg, and Musk. Buffett only paid an effective rate of 0.10%. Paying such low tax rates, it's no wonder that Buffett has become one of the biggest proponents of raising rates on the uber-wealthy like himself. 


Image Source: ProPublica

Now, you can see the effect of rates is 0.98%. 1.30% and 3.27% for Bezos, Bloomberg, and Musk, respectively. 

Another interesting graphic from this report is the one below.  It compares wealth growth and taxes paid by Bezos and the average American family. That noticeable dip on the household graph is that during the 2008 recession, many families lost their homes, where the bulk of their assets were. Bezos mostly owned stock, so he escaped any foreclosure. 


Image Source: ProPublica

The point here is not to shame these billionaires, as they have built successful companies, and capitalism rewards risk-takers. Moreover, it's also worth pointing out that all these folks have been paying what is legally owed. 

They've been doing what any rational person would be, using the tax code to their advantage. But this report highlights that the burden of proportional tax is borne much harder by those less well-off. And the reason for that is because of that same tax code.

 

The Enigmatic Codes

So let's take a closer look into these complex codes. Before we can delve into the specific tactics used by the rich, we have to understand precisely how most of them make their money. That's because the way that they make money will impact the type of taxes they'll pay. 

Most people will pay an income tax on their income which is mostly your primary source of income. In the case of most of society, this is their salary or wage. This income is taxed at different rates and goes up to 37%  at the US Federal level for the highest tax bracket. 

The examples used are from US taxes, although the practice is broadly the same in other countries. This income tax is usually hard to avoid, as it's taxed when it's earned, and in many cases, taken out of your paycheck. 

However, when it comes to the uber-rich, they own assets that are taxed as a capital gain only when they appreciate. Notably, long-term capital gains tax for assets held for more than a year is much lower than income tax. 

For example, the top tax rate for capital gains in the US is 23.8%, which is much lower than the maximum rate on ordinary income. Based on the raw percentage, that would be the same rate of tax paid by someone who earns between $86k and $164k. So, you can now see why so many of these billionaire founders of companies choose to take token salaries.

Bezos earns a measly $80k, and Steve Jobs famously took a one-dollar salary. Mark Zuckerberg and Larry Ellison have followed suit. By doing this, they're avoiding having to pay any income taxes at all. They are taking stock and options on a stock that will only be taxed at the capital gains rate, over 13% lower than they would have paid, should they have opted to take income. 

But the critical point is this capital gains tax is only due to being paid once the gain is realized, in other words, sold. They are not obligated to make this sale in any way, shape, or form. They can hold on to these assets for a lifetime and never pay tax on them, and that is precisely what most of them do. 

So, how can these guys afford to live without realizing those gains? There’s a common misconception that wealthy people try to avoid debt, and it’s actually quite the opposite. They are among the most prolific users, and they do it in ingenious and efficient ways. One of these is borrowing against their assets and living off borrowed money. They're using their vast assets as collateral to take out debt. 

Buy Borrow Die Tactic

They’re doing this because they don't have to sell those assets and realize that gain, so they can avoid paying any taxes on the rapid appreciation in their wealth and still live like kings. This self-explanatory tactic is called, Buy, Borrow, Die. 

In a nutshell, they accumulate valuable assets that can be used as collateral assets such as stocks, bonds, real estate, art, etc. Then once they have these assets, they move on to the next step, looking to borrow cash using the assets as collateral. Then, of course, the inevitable happens, and they leave their fortune to their heirs. 

The first two steps may sound similar to a home equity line of credit, but it's much more favorable than that. We usually have pretty onerous terms when we apply to get credit and use our house as collateral. We have higher interest rates, and the amount of credit we get on our homes is limited. 

However, if you offer a bank highly liquid securities as collateral, you can get an absolute bargain. According to this piece in the Wall Street Journal, some of these lenders don't even need credit reports. Goldman Sachs’s private bank has even offered securities-based loans on anything from $75k to $25 million, with no personal financial statements, tax returns, or paper applications. 

In terms of interest rates, Merrill Lynch quotes 3.2% for those with assets of over $1 million and a low 0.87% for those with assets of over $100 million. Those are rates of interest and terms that we could only dream about. Then once they have this cash, they can do whatever they want with it. 

Yes, they have to pay interest, but it's trivial. Moreover, the value of their assets usually appreciates more than the interest rate. This is termed Positive Carry, where they end up better off than before. 

But the real kicker is that interest on loans is tax-deductible. These interest payments can be used to offset their already low tax bill. And, of course, they don't really ever have to pay this off. The banks are okay with rolling it over into perpetuity. 

You get to live your best life and still retain the upside on all those assets. You see, it benefits the banks to have such high-value collateral. It's easy to liquidate, unlike houses, and the bank itself can earn high returns on those assets. It’s the rehypothecation process, and most of the nearly 1000 wealthiest Americans use this tactic. 

For example, Elon Musk, and cable billionaire, John Malone have pledged $150 billion of their stock for loans. There is the risk that the stock collateral falls in price and that these billionaires will get a margin call. Still, these assets generally appreciate, especially with all that money printing going on at the FED. 


Image Source: Tenor. Funarg

Now, there's a lot of accumulated capital gains sitting out there, and by some estimates, it's as large as $5 trillion. This wealth has never been taxed and never will be taxed in some cases. That's because of the final step required of these billionaires, which is to die. 

When these billionaires with so much wealth eventually die, they leave that wealth to their heirs. They may have outstanding loans that these heirs then pay off; however, they keep the assets. These assets may incur an estate tax, but several strategies around gifting, donations, and charitable foundations lessen the burden, but that's irrelevant when considering that these heirs won't have to pay those accumulated unrealized capital gains. 

It is all thanks to something called the Step-Up in Basis. Essentially, when people die and their heirs inherit their fortune, the “cost” of the investment in the eyes of the IRS is the value of the asset that they received. That makes the asset free from any capital gains tax. If or when the asset appreciates again in value, the tax payable is only the difference, not the original price.

This is how some family dynasties have held onto their wealth for generations. They can pay legions of estate planners and accountants to structure the most sophisticated of vehicles that are beyond the reach of us mere mortals. 

 

The Ongoing Debate

Many progressive politicians looked upon these tax strategies for the elite rich with some indignation. They are now at the forefront of a debate around billionaire taxes in the US. A proposal by the Biden Administration plans to come after the unrealized gains of assets held by wealthy individuals to help fund the massive social spending and climate bill. 

Irrespective of what the bill will finally contain, it's clear that part of the effort to pay for it involves taxing wealthy individuals. For example, back in May, the initial target of the bill was the Capital Gains Tax rate. 

As they were aware of the fact that CGT was much lower than income taxes, the Democrats proposed increasing the top rate for CGT to 39.6%. If you include the Medicare surtax, it will be 43.4%, with some state taxes increasing those numbers. 

This proposal was a tough sell as it applied to anyone with over $1million in income, which is a much larger subset of people than just billionaires, so that was overturned. The Biden White House returned with the proposal to tax the unrealized capital gains of some of the wealthiest Americans, a much smaller subset of around a thousand people.  

That didn’t go down too well either, as it sounded like a wealth tax, and in fact, that’s how it was marketed to some progressives. Janet Yellen explained that it was “merely a capital gains tax on liquid assets held by extremely wealthy individual billionaires. I wouldn't call it a wealth tax.”  

 

The Terminology Not The Real Issue

Whatever they want to call it, it is clearly a tax designed to go after the wealthy for their unrealized gains, a tax that many legal Scholars said may even be unconstitutional. But it's not the terminology that was controversial; it’s the whole concept itself. Who would determine whether an asset was sufficiently liquid? Where do you draw the line?

And if you do draw the line, would this discriminate against some billionaires in favor of others? Would those billionaires who have most of their wealth in stock have to pay that unrealized gain tax, while others who own land don't?

What if these billionaires have to pay that tax in one year on a Gain, but the following year, there's a loss? Shouldn’t they be entitled to a tax refund on the back of that loss? Will the IRS pay that out? 

What if some of the most ultra-wealthy have to sell their holdings to pay these taxes? What impact could that have on the broader market? Assuming someone like Elon Musk or Jeff Bezos had to sell tens of billions worth of stock in the companies they own, would that not harm the stock market? The same stock market that millions of middle-class Americans are invested in with their 401ks. All of that, for a mere potential tax benefit of $250 billion. 

In response to the above questions, the answer lies in the evidence of how these wealth taxes have worked previously in Europe. In 1990, twelve European countries had a wealth tax, however, there is only four today. One of the most recent casualties of the wealth tax was France which scrapped it in 2017.

This has provided a practical case study to analyze the real effects of these wealth taxes. In France’s case, since the 1980s, it has had an annual wealth tax on all those individuals who had over 1.3 million euros in assets. 

The first and most obvious impact of this wealth tax was that it drove the billionaires out. There was an exodus of wealthy people from France when it was in place, and because billionaires are the people who have the most means to move their tax domicile, they can easily move to more friendly regimes. By the prime minister's estimate, some 60,000 people with 35 billion euros worth of assets left between 2000 and 2016. 

Furthermore, the wealth tax was tough to enforce and costly. According to French Economist Eric Pichet, the cost of administering the tax was twice as much as was brought in. The country's fiscal budget was not only worse off than if it hadn't gone after this tax, but it now had even fewer billionaires to tax in the first place. 


Source: The Economic Consequences of the French Wealth Tax

Many other countries in Europe came to the same conclusion – the administrative burden just didn't make much sense. There were so many exemptions and loopholes that the rich could almost wholly avoid it. Then, of course, there was the impact this had on general Investments. 

Despite what most people tend to think about billionaires, their Investments do help to fuel innovation and economic growth. This was precisely the reason given by the Austrian government when it eliminated its tax, and it placed an “economic burden on Austrian Enterprises.” Switzerland also illustrates the potential drawbacks of a wealth tax in this article

Consequently,  Europe got a real-life practical example of the Laffer Curve. This well-known economic theory shows the decreasing marginal returns of taxes, and you get to a point where increasing taxes brings in even less revenue. 


Image Source: Fee.org.The Laffer Curve

 

Closing Thoughts

Now we’re faced with the pandemic that destroyed our economies and pushed millions into unemployment, but the rich got even richer during this time. Not only that, but they managed to accumulate most of that wealth without having to pay their fair share of tax on it. 

Naturally, this has led to a backlash from the populace. It feels just so inherently wrong that Warren Buffett pays 0.10% on his taxes, while his secretary pays over 37%. But to Warren's credit, he has been the one to point out this disparity

However, having said all of that, the alternatives don't sound too appealing either. Taxing unrealized gains is a recipe for potential disaster that could bog the IRS down for years. A proposal that the rich would fight tooth and nail and which could be proven to be unconstitutional. 

General wealth taxes have also been highly ineffective when implemented in European countries. Their impact has made governments and citizens poorer, while the rich simply migrate to other more favorable jurisdictions and enjoy their wealth there instead.

Some argue that we shouldn't be taxing success. If you disincentivize someone enough, then they will reduce their economic output. (That's the Laffer Curve.) I’m sure many would not be happy if the government wanted to tax all the gains on the cryptocurrency they’re hodling that has not been sold or has any intention to sell.  

I’m sure that many homeowners feel the same about their houses or apartments. Does this mean that the billionaires who own stock cannot feel similarly angered by the proposal? It's a complex and sensitive predicament for sure. 

The fact remains, though, as pointed out by the likes of Joseph Stiglitz and many others, that inequality is a blight on our society; tackling inequality would make life better for billions of people and supercharge the world economy yet, it's easier said than done. 

Perhaps instead of targeting the wealthy individuals at the top of the pyramid. It would be better and fairer to go after the corporations that have made them rich in the first place. The corporations with billion-dollar profits and tiny tax bills. The corporations that offshore their income and treat their workers appallingly in many cases. 

Individual enterprise should be allowed to flourish, but corporate greed is a much more insidious and damaging force in the world. So, maybe they should go after that instead. What are your thoughts? 

 

ecosystem for entrepreneurs

 

Resources: Coin Bureau, ProPublica

Also published @ Before It’s News: https://beforeitsnews.com/economics-and-politics/2021/12/inequality-or-just-a-fact-of-life-2529204.html

 

Thomas Prendergast

ELROND – Taking Blockchain And Crypto To The Next Level

ELROND – Taking Blockchain And Crypto To The Next Level

A Technology Ecosystem For The New Internet

Cryptocurrencies have many use cases. Some act as a store of value, others power blockchains that make it possible to create trustless digital contracts and permissionless, decentralized applications. Some cryptocurrencies are pegged to Fiat currencies to allow for stable transfers of value, and a few even underpin protocols that offer decentralized data, storage, and video streaming. 

Each of these use cases requires a particular set of blockchain attributes and economic incentives. This is why it's often said that there is no single cryptocurrency project that can do it all. That may well be true, but there is one that comes close. 

 

What Is Elrond? 

Elrond has combined the scarcity of Bitcoin, the programmability of Ethereum, and the speed of next-generation cryptos, like Solana, to create a cryptocurrency network unlike any other. Elrond is a platform built for internet-scale and capable of processing thousands of transactions per second at $0.001 per transaction, and able to scale to hundreds of thousands with demand.

Elrond’s distinction is being a project with a soul. One that has united forces of an incredibly vibrant community of 190,000 people, spanning 18 languages and in almost 30 countries. Elrond aims to create the backbone for high bandwidth, transparent financial system, and extending universal access to anyone, anywhere.

Elrond’s egold (EGLD) native token has exploded in value over the last year and seems to be poised for more gains. The Blockchain project has been considered under the radar and received very little crypto media exposure until now. 


Image source: Elrond · Growth

Historically, Elrond was founded in 2017 by Benjamin Mincu, Lucien Mincu, and Lucien Todea. The Elrond white paper was released in November 2018, and the Elrond main net went live in late July 2020. Like Cardano and Polkadot, Elrond is a competitor to Ethereum and seeks to be the foundation for the “new internet economy.”

 

Growth At All Costs

Unlike many smart contract cryptos, Elrond has a “growth at all costs” approach and has wasted no time onboarding individuals and institutions. It seems to be a perpetual process as Elrond has announced so many partnerships and integrations almost daily that it’s too many to mention here, so I’ll touch on some highlights. 


Coin98Analytics produced this graphic to demonstrate the enormity of the Elrond ecosystem.

 

The Ledger hardware wallet enabled support for egold in November 2020 and partnered with the Poly Network to make it possible to use Bitcoin, Ethereum, and dozens of other cryptocurrencies on Elrond as wrapped ESDT tokens.  

Elrond's documentation explains that they will be native to the Elrond chain, like egold. This means that they won't require a smart contract to issue and send like ERC 20 tokens on Ethereum. This protocol is very similar to Cardano’s Native assets, which have almost the same properties as ESDT Tokens. 

In December 2020, Elrond announced that it had partnered with Bitgo, which is one of the largest cryptocurrency Custodians. Also, Binance joined Elond as a staking provider. In October 2021, Elrond commenced collaboration with Ardana Stablecoin Hub on Cardano Blockchain to make egold (EGLD) one of the first native assets to collateralize stablecoins issued on the Cardano network. 

In the long-term, this collaboration will make it possible to bridge assets, such as the Cardano-native ADA token or other tokens issued on the two blockchains. This will allow their value to be leveraged in DeFi opportunities available on both networks.  

Beniamin Mincu, Elrond Network CEO says,

“This creative exploration of collateralizing a stable coin on one chain with the native coin of another can be a good starting point for interoperability between two progressive global ecosystems that are anchored in performance and innovation.”  

At the beginning of this year, Elrond began its initiative of onboarding the next billion people called 100 days of Hypergrowth. In addition to onboarding as many projects and users as possible, Elrond has launched its fully community-owned DeFi ecosystem, the Maiar DEX DeFi platform. The project describes itself as a technology ecosystem for the new internet. It includes fintech, decentralized finance, and the Internet of Things.

“By distributing Maiar DEX ownership to the next billion users, we lay the foundation for a truly global financial system that is accessible to everyone, everywhere,” said Beniamin Mincu, Elrond Network CEO.

 

What Makes Elrond Blockchain Different?

The Elrond blockchain uses Adaptive Stake Sharding to achieve incredible throughput features a robust consensus mechanism called Secured Proof of Stake and is smart contract compatible thanks to Arwen Virtual Machine.

In layman's terms, sharding involves breaking up a blockchain into multiple pieces called shards. This increases transaction speed because you can divide the transactions between different clusters of validator nodes running shards on the blockchain and process them in parallel. This is in contrast to regular blockchains, which require all the validators or miners to process one transaction at a time.

Sharding in the Elrond network was designed from the ground up to address the complexity of combining network sharding, transaction sharding, and state sharding. Elrond’s adaptive stake sharding takes this idea to the next level by dividing transactions, validators, and even the record of transactions between shards. The result is a cohesive protocol design, which not only achieves full sharding but attains the following goals as well:

  1. Scalability without affecting availability requires increasing or decreasing the number of shards to only affect a negligibly small vicinity of nodes without causing downtimes or minimizing them while updating states.
  2. Fast dispatching and instant traceability require that computing the destination shard of a transaction must be deterministic and trivial to calculate, eliminating the need for communication rounds.
  3. Efficiency and adaptability require that the shards should be as balanced as possible at any given time.

A trivial step-by-step example of how it works is depicted in the animation below:


Image Source: Elrond Network

 

Secure Proof of Stake (SPoS) ensures that no single shard is corrupted by randomly selecting a set of 61 validators from each shard and choosing one to produce a block based on its stake and reputation. This unique setup makes it possible for Elrond to process over 5,000 transactions per second per shard.


Image Source: Elrond Network

 

The best part is that the Arwen Virtual Machine gives smart contract transactions about the same speed, which is quite rare. More importantly, the Arwen VM can operate between shards, a development hurdle many other sharded blockchains are struggling to overcome.

Elrond is a complete redesign of blockchain architecture to achieve global scalability and near-instant transaction speed. The underlying technology beyond the current state-of-the-art concept is better explained in the video below by our mate Guy from Coin Bureau. 

 

Wrapping It All Up

Elrond is a next-level project, and it managed to combine the best features of many leading cryptocurrencies in the space and even improve them. Elrond's adaptive state sharding is like the sharding Ethereum is working on in its 2.0 version, but better. Elrond’s secured Proof of Stake is like Harmony’s Effective Proof of Stake (EPoS) but better. Elrond’s Arwen Virtual Machine is like Cosmos’s Cosm Wasm Virtual Machine, but better. 

When you combine these three features, you get a blockchain that is theoretically capable of handling more transactions per second than every other smart contract Blockchain combined. Elrond’s development has been exponential since its main net launched last year, and the growth is well deserved with much more on the horizon.

Furthermore, with its highly regarded team, Elrond started out with very few proclamations but a lot of activity and consistent growth over time. Contrary to what often happens today, where the launch of new projects is preceded by too much spam, sensational announcements on social networks, millionaire ICOs raise substantial funds before any commencement of technical work on the project. 

Conversely, Elrond’s development started out quietly and self-assuredly, without asking anyone for money, at least initially, and then managed to gain investors’ trust with a whole series of steps and transformations that have evolved over the recent years.  

I believe we will be hearing a lot more about Elrond in the future as momentum builds and the need for this unparalleled technology becomes paramount to enable universal access and transcend the global economy. Elrond will be the wave that will lift all boats, taking this massive opportunity from a niche group of people and extending it to everyone in the world. Elrond is set to open the flood gates to create a new market.

Disclaimer:  This content is provided for informational purposes only and should not be relied upon as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. Furthermore, this content is not directed at nor intended for use by any investors or prospective investors and may not under any circumstances be relied upon when deciding to invest.

 

 

Also published @ Before It’s News https://beforeitsnews.com/science-and-technology/2021/11/elrond-taking-blockchain-and-crypto-to-the-next-level-3002719.html

 

Thomas Prendergast

WHAT ARE NFTs? A FAD OR THE REAL DEAL?

WHAT ARE NFTs? A FAD OR THE REAL DEAL?

Now that we understand cryptocurrency fundamentals and are busy creating our ecosystem at Markethive, there’s a craze that has emerged in 2021, and it’s a thing called Non Fungible Tokens or NFTs. Although NFTs are not new, they have only recently become more popular among blockchain enthusiasts, artists, and collectors. 

To some, the cryptocurrency booming NFT market makes little sense at first glance. Nobody in their right mind would shell out millions of dollars for an NFT, yet this is happening almost every day. As it turns out, there is much more to NFTs than meets the eye, and some of these NFTs are only beginning to realize their fair valuations. 

What Is An NFT?

NFT is the acronym for Non-Fungible Token and is described as a unique digital asset or a digital representation of an asset that stores information about that asset on a cryptocurrency blockchain. This makes it permanent; it cannot be replicated or counterfeited, and ownership is provable. 

NFTs are created using Smart Contracts, which are essentially self-executing computer applications that cannot be modified once they've gone live. Depending on the smart contract conditions, it can allow for the creation of one or multiple NFTs of the same or similar kind.  

NFTs cannot be counterfeited because the blockchains they exist on are almost always publicly viewable and transparent. This means anyone can check if an NFT came from the smart contract belonging to the person who originally created it or from a different smart contract made by some imposter. 

The openness of cryptocurrency blockchains is also what makes ownership of these NFTs provable; you're able to easily see which wallet address is holding the NFT token you’re in which you’re interested. 

NFTs have technically been around since 2012 when colored coins were introduced to Bitcoin. These colored coins made it possible to add unique attributes to specific BTC coins to represent currencies and expensive artworks. 

Today, NFTs are more commonplace on Blockchains that utilize smart contracts as they do a much better job of minting and managing unique digital assets than Bitcoin. There are growing communities of NFT marketplaces and creators on several artworks blockchains. 

Almost anything can be represented by an NFT, including artworks, title deeds, web domains, collectibles, audio files, and even people’s identities and tweets. Ownership of the NFT can signify ownership of the asset it represents, though not necessarily the copyright to that asset.

How Do Fungible And Non-Fungible Tokens Differ?

The difference between fungible and non-fungible is that fungible tokens can be freely exchanged with another asset of the same denomination. For example, one bitcoin is worth the same as another Bitcoin regardless of who’s wallet they're in or what price they are trading. Any fungible coin is exchangeable and interchangeable with another fungible coin.

Non-fungible assets have a unique value. Sports trading cards are a perfect example; One card can be deemed more valuable than another and be sold at a higher price because it’s perceived as more valuable to the collector. 

Crypto Punks and Crypto Kitties are other NFTs are selling for over $100,000, and if you want to get a sense of how big the NFT market is, go to nonfungible.com. There, you’ll find the trading volumes of many popular NFTs, including Decentraland and Sandbox.

 

Jack Dorsey, CEO of Twitter, sold his first tweet on Twitter as an NFT for over $2.9 million, and the most expensive NFT sold for $69.3 million by Mike Winklemann, more famously known as Beeple. 

So the question you might be asking yourself; who is buying this stuff and why? 

Simply, it’s human nature to want to collect things, which has been the case since the beginning of time. NFTs represent the same obsessions that people have always had with owning certain things they perceive to have value. Some people get tremendous satisfaction by holding postage stamps and are willing to pay considerable sums to fill gaps in their collections. 

From a purely economic standpoint, when something is scarce or unique, it makes it open to having a lucrative price tag regardless of whether it has any objective utility or value. The Italian guy who sold the banana he duct-taped to a wall for $120,000 certainly proved this point. 

Constructive Force Of NFTs

To some, NFTs may seem nonsensical and a bubble about to burst, but they do have the potential to be a force for good, allowing artists to profit from their work without the intervention of middlemen like dealers and galleries. Because NFTs are built using smart contracts, they can be coded to ensure that, when sold, the creator can automatically be granted a percentage of the profits. In this way, artists can continue to earn a living from their work.

An example of this is Audius. Audius launched in September 2020 and made it possible for artists to stream directly to listeners while keeping the significant share of the money they make and are giving Spotify a run for their money with already over 3 million users. 

Another excellent example of NFTs with utility and value is blockchain domains. Unlike regular web domains, blockchain domains cannot be censored or taken offline because they are hosted on a decentralized blockchain instead of a centralized server. 

Some blockchain domains like .crypto also don’t have any renewal fees; it’s a one-time payment and yours for life. Notably, blockchain domains make it possible to accept cryptocurrency payments without a complicated wallet address. You can use a name of your choice instead of a random set of digits. 

Now, even though some of these NFTs have objective utility and value, it still doesn't justify the astronomical price tags you see for many of these. This just proves that most of the interest around NFTs currently being seen is caused by hype. And that most of the people presently buying NFTs have very deep pockets and probably too much free time on their hands. Arguably,  most are looking to make a quick buck by selling and or reselling NFTs.

There are even YouTube channels dedicated to flipping Crypto Punks or flipping plots of land on the Decentraland marketplace. There's also no shortage of video tutorials to help you mint your own NFT. If you want to go shopping for NFTs, your best options are Rarible and Open Sea. You'll find just about every kind of NFT on these sites, including art, blockchain domains, virtual land, digital trading cards, and other collectibles. 

If you want to browse tweets as NFTs or even mint your own tweets as NFTs, you can use the valuables site. Now before you dive into the NFT deep end, there are a few things you should know about the NFT market. 

 

Things You Should Know

Unless you're buying an NFT from a well-known artist, like Beeple, it can be tough to tell whether the NFT you're looking at has any real value.  In theory, you can check this by reviewing the “sell history” of that NFT to see if there's any demand for it. 

However, many sellers are minting NFTs and then buying them from themselves using other Ethereum wallets that they own. This creates an artificial sell history and gives you the impression that the NFT you're interested in has some market value. It's basically a solo version of the wash trading you see on many sketchy cryptocurrency exchanges. 

There are also a lot of sellers on NFT marketplaces pretending to be museums and art galleries. Sometimes they're even marked as a verified seller because they link to a dummy account on Twitter. These fake museums and art galleries sell high-quality images of semi-famous artworks found on Google as NFTs for a nice profit. 

Besides the risks mentioned above, there are a few others to keep in mind. The NFT market is clearly in a bubble, and unlike the crypto Market, there's going to be little to no support on the way down. This is mainly because the NFT market isn't liquid, and there's also no definitive way to determine the fair value of an NFT. 

A safer alternative to NFTs is the tokens that power their various marketplaces, but still, most of these NFT project tokens are in bubble territory. Both Coinmarketcap.com  and Coin gecko have designated tabs for NFT project coins. There are a few marketplaces pundits are watching closely.

Audius
As mentioned earlier, the Audius decentralized streaming platform is on their list. It’s common knowledge that musicians have been getting squeezed by record labels and streaming platforms for years, even decades. This pandemic certainly hasn't helped things either. Audius is a platform for artists to stream directly to listeners and keep the lion’s share of the proceeds. 

Although Audius has an excellent value proposition, there is an issue with its tokenomics. The Audio token has a supply of 1 billion, with a 7% annual inflation rate, and only 5% of Audio’s initial supply was airdropped to artists and fans. The other 95% has been allocated to the team and private investors and seen as a red flag. 

 

Chiliz
Chiliz has a great value proposition and is just as good as Audius. Holders of the $CHZ token can purchase fan tokens for sports teams such as FC Barcelona, a fan token called FCB. Also, holders of Chiliz fan tokens have a say in how their respective sports teams are managed. 

Most of these tokens are traded on the Chiliz exchange against $CHZ. Chiliz is expanding in terms of partnerships and adoption, and there seems to be much more to Chiliz than just the fan tokens.  

 

Decentraland

Decentraland is a VR platform powered by Ethereum. It allows users to claim parcels of LAND in a virtual world where they can create content, build applications, and then monetize them. In Decentraland, you can buy, sell, trade, and even create an NFT that can be used within this virtual world. 

In contrast to Audius and Chiliz, its MANA token has more robust tokenomics. It is said to be one of the most transparent and equitable distributions out there. No single wallet holds a concerning amount of the total supply.
 
Decentraland has limited plots of virtual land, which have sold for over six figures in the past. The strength of the MANA token comes from the fact that it's burned when a purchase of land takes place and burned when paying for fees for other Marketplace transactions. 

MANA token burns will grow as it continues to onboard users and secure new partnerships like the recent one with Atari, bringing virtual cryptocurrency casinos to Decentraland.

Giving it more weight is that Grayscale Investments, the world’s largest digital currency asset manager, has recently incorporated an investment trust for Decentraland and the MANA token.

 

Theta

Theta is a decentralized video streaming protocol that will likely rival YouTube, the same way Audius is likely to rival Spotify. If you think that’s a bit far-fetched, consider that Theta has partnerships with Google and Samsung and recently partnered with Sony's European arm.

Unlike other cryptocurrency partnerships, Theta’s affiliations are very real. Case in point; Theta.tv is embedded into Samsung Daily, which came pre-installed on over 75 million Galaxy smartphones that authentic people are currently using.  

Furthermore, Theta token probably has the best tokenomics of any NFT related project. It has a fixed supply with no inflation, and 100% of that supply is also technically in circulation. Theta has consequently seen very little resistance in its rise from five cents to over $6 over the last year. 

 

The State Of Play

The NFT market’s popularity is at an all-time high at the moment, but it’s only a matter of time before that bubble bursts. The aftermath will show that the projects with real value will be the ones that survive like blockchain domains, among others, and also some NFT art. There are currently talks to create virtual museums and art galleries for the pandemic-stricken legacy art industry where valuable art pieces are collecting dust. 

The possibility of showcasing NFT art in real life in your home using augmented reality is discussed in this article and the obvious next step from virtual NFTs. But what about NFT and Defi? Believe it or not, it’s starting to become a thing. There are already peer-to-peer marketplaces like NFTfi.com, where people can use their NFT as collateral to borrow stable coins. 

Like the fungible crypto coins, we need to identify the utility and purpose behind these NFTs and marketplaces and beware of sketchy or scammy projects. The many industries like sports, gaming, collectibles, art, and music are all starting to embrace NFTs. 

The idea of owning something entirely digital may seem crazy to some of us, but to those who already spend large amounts of their lives online in one form or another, becoming a second home, it just seems natural.

Just because something doesn’t physically exist doesn’t mean it can’t be owned or that someone else might someday be willing to buy it from you for more than you paid for it. Although having said that, expect sales of digital photo frames to start going through the roof.

A recent survey conducted with millionaires revealed a generational divide when it comes to non-fungible tokens (NFTs). While most millionaires say they don't know what an NFT is, more than a third believe it to be an “overhyped fad.” But a good two-thirds of millennial millionaires say NFTs “are the next big thing.”

Nearly half of millennial millionaires surveyed own NFTs, and 40% of those who don't currently own one have “considered” it. Comparatively, almost all the baby boomer millionaires, 98%, say they don't own any NFTs and aren't considering either.

 

ecosystem for entrepreneurs

 


Written by Deb Williams
Chief Editor and writer for Markethive.com, the social, market, broadcasting network. An avid supporter of blockchain technology and cryptocurrency. I thrive on progress and champion freedom of speech and sovereignty.  I embrace "Change" with a passion, and my purpose in life is to enlighten people en masse, accept and move forward with enthusiasm.

The information contained in this article is for informational purposes only and not to be construed to be financial legal or tax advice. Any NFT’s mentioned in this article should not be interpreted as a sign of support. 

 

 

Thomas Prendergast

Get Off The Hampster Wheel And Ride The Wave With The New Age Of Cryptocosm

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Get Off The Hampster Wheel And Ride The Wave With The New Age Of Cryptocosm.

Are Governments Still In The Industrial Age? 

Companies in the private sector are implementing cutting-edge technology while governments are still grappling with large-scale information technology projects. The disparity between the two is in all likelihood going to get wider as Blockchain technology becomes more prevalent.  

The crisis facing governments is the trust factor. Increasingly we are less inclined to trust the workings of a government and see it as flawed and controlling. There is a growing negative view among Society that government officials and regulators are not credible.   

As our governments remain in the industrial age they are becoming less relevant and it is probably going to accelerate. The structure and processes of most governments date back to pre-1950’s. Why is this? Apathy? Or could it be they fear a loss of control? 

 

The Information Age Of The Internet

On a global scale, governments were trying to gain control of the internet when it realized the danger of losing power. These efforts have proven to be in vain. So now Governments and the tech giants are colluding with both having similar end goals. Governments want to regulate the tech monopolies because that’s what they intrinsically do, plus for monetary gains. The tech giants want to be ruled by governments because regulation makes it more difficult and expensive for free enterprise or new competitors entering the market. 

What once was the global information superhighway deemed to be free and privacy was not an issue, is now being shattered by tech monopolies and governments. Some would argue they are killing the internet, us as a society and the future. I beg to differ. They’re forgetting about efflorescence of creativity and human intelligence that has emerged in the private sector.

 

Now We Have The Cryptocosm Age 

The Futurist and Author of Life After Google, George Gilder says,

“This very lack of concern with security will be google’s undoing. For every other player on the net, the lack of security is the most relevant threat to its current business model, This problem will be solved… So fundamental will security be to this new system that its very name will be derived from it. It will be the CRYPTOCOSM”

The cryptocosm is the amazing, providential development of creativity which has erupted all over the world which supplies a new architecture for the internet. This will also indeed be a new architecture for the entire world economy. This is at a very crucial time as the system of the central banks with its 5.1 trillion a day currency trading that fails to arrive at significant currency values and the architecture of the internet today which requires us to jumps through hoops and bare all with the present authentication methods is bankrupt. Some think that this is a viable system but the fact is it is failing every day. This will be replaced by the cryptocosm, the Blockchain.

As George Gilder states,

“Security is not a procedure or mechanism, it is an architecture. The Cryptocosm will start by defining the ground state, the foundation.  It is the ultimate non-random reality. The ground state is you.”

Blockchain Technology – As Undecryptable As Our DNA

What this means is Blockchain technology will permit us all to have private keys which are as individual as us and undecryptable as our DNA. Fundamentally Blockchain is the new architecture for the internet that allows you to keep your information to yourself. It’s a distributed ledger of human intelligence and information in global networks. It’s not conglomerated in one centralized database owned and controlled by government agencies or the tech giants of today. 

The Blockchain did originate as a form of money, Bitcoin, however, over the last decade it has since been discovered that any and all companies can utilize Blockchain technology making all information, transactions, and behavior immutable and unimpeachable. This protects us as individuals and as a society. So not only does this eliminate privacy issues, it documents all data immutably, and can be proven in the case of attestation which is an important advance that the Blockchain offers, whether it be in third world countries, eastern or the western world. 

The tech giants have a business plan and a technological solution that is inappropriate to a world full of human individual minds. The individual is the resource and Blockchain will empower the individual and conditions of economic and political liberties. 

The Blockchain and related cryptographic technologies breaking through with a creative insurgency is the answer to the problem we are afflicted with the monopolies. It provides a distribution of intelligence, privacy, and personal rights and points of view that has been lost. The Blockchain is part of the public world where great human adventures are conducted, where great new companies are launched and the continued dynamics of human creativity is expressed. This is just the beginning. We will not be subject to being consumed or held to ransom and governed by tech giants and governments in a centralized fashion. 

 

We are watching this tsunami obliterate the banks, polices and centralized government control. This MEME just about sums it up.

Markethive – A Central Hub In A Decentralized Environment

Markethive is a decentralized, autonomous, fluid environment which includes manifestations of intellectual achievements, social habits, innovation, music, literature, technology, commerce, and the arts. A central “hub” built using blockchain technology, is designed to encourage “reciprocal interchange” of ideas, knowledge or skills as well as providing for exchange, sales or purchases of goods, services, and commodities. 

With a history of over 20 years in Inbound Marketing, including SaaS, CRM, and CMS, Markethive does have the edge and is on track to bring proven products and services to a much needy market, including digital news and social media. It is essentially the process of attracting prospects via content creation, creating brand awareness and integrity leading to healthy relationships built on collaboration and sovereignty. 

This futuristic model is here now and fully prepared for the future, truly representing a prime example of the next generation; The Market Network. Markethive has the road map and is the blueprint of where things are headed. 

 

Markethive Bringing Sovereignty To All 

Look out for the obliteration of these outdated centralized agencies and the big tech with the technology of the last decade as we move into the next generation where privacy, free speech, autonomy and the right to be individuals and Entrepreneurs in a free enterprise system comes to fruition with Markethive. The only system that rewards, creating universal income and gives the power back to all who engage on the platform. Markethive doesn’t diminish your capacity or turn you into an endorphin seeking zombie. It empowers and lifts us up to be the creative individual we all aspire to be. 

Markethive is a digital virtual surfboard. We are preparing for the greatest revolution second only to Jesus Christ, and it is Cryptocosm, the Blockchain. Crypto is unstoppable, even though governments and the elites will do everything they can to destroy it. Technology will destroy them. The Rise of the Entrepreneur is gaining momentum. Markethive is the ecosystem for Entrepreneurs. Are you ready to ride the great wave?

 

ecosystem for entrepreneurs

 

 

 

Deb Williams
Market Manager for Markethive, a global Market Network, and Writer for the Crypto/Blockchain Industry. Also a strong advocate for technology, progress, and freedom of speech.  I embrace "Change" with a passion and my purpose in life is to help people understand, accept and move forward with enthusiasm to achieve their goals. 
 

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Thomas Prendergast