Category Archives: MIT

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Race to World’s First Pure PoS Crypto: Ethereum vs Vault

Race to World’s First Pure PoS Crypto_ Ethereum vs Vault

MIT researchers have claimed to develop a new cryptocurrency that requires an astounding 99% less space than Bitcoin to store data. The cryptocurrency, dubbed Vault, is based on Proof of Stake, a concept that is resource efficient and requires little energy to process.

According to the MIT developers, Vault will be deployed within this year. Ethereum’s current estimate to shift from PoW to PoS is roughly between 2019 and 2021. For some, the race to become the first cryptocurrency that purely uses a highly-efficient PoS algorithm is on.

Vault takes advantage of being built with PoS in mind, with a team that is from the finest technical institution in the world. Ethereum, frequently battling with Ripple (XRP) for the position of the second largest cryptocurrency, has long planned of shifting to PoS, but till now has not been able to do so, citing upgrade issues.

The issue faced by Ethereum is called the Trilemma, a concept proposed by its founder, Vitalik Buterin. The three-pronged dilemma says that only two of three characters can be achieved by any cryptocurrency: security, scalability and decentralization. Indeed, no cryptocurrency has ever been able to achieve all three. Even Ethereum has plans involving several steps to solve this issue. This includes the transition to PoS and development of layer 1 and layer 2 Ethereum.

Silvio Micali, a professor at MIT, claims to have found the solution. Using a fragmented Merkle Tree, it will allow nodes to store only data from the fragmented line. This would allow completing of transactions without downloading the complete data history of the blockchain. For situations where the transaction is from one fragment of the Merkle Tree to another, a special method will be used to search for nodes that intersect both the fragments.

Vault’s technology and method are seemingly sound, but it still has to prove it. Ethereum, on the other hand, still has to complete the migration process.

 

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MIT Professor Believes Blockchain Catalyst for Borderless Economy

MIT

Blockchain, according to a Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor, has the right ingredients for a borderless economyProfessor Silvio Micali made these claims in an interview to Bloomberg.

Silvio, a professor of engineering, said that blockchain’s three most prominent characteristics were security, scalability and decentralization and that before the advent of blockchain, two out of the three were possible for any system that could be used for borderless economies.

Asked about scalability as the ability to accommodate increasing load — a fundamental requirement in a global economy — he said that decentralized systems only needed as much technology and confidence as any given centralized one.

On the security front, the professor pointed out that centralized systems are more prone to breaches: “Only a true decentralized system, where the power is really so spread that is going to be essentially practically impossible to attack them all and when you don’t need to trust this or that particular node, is going to bring actually the security we really need and deserve.”

MIT, as a major technology university, has a lot of interest in the decentralized technology. It is leading the effort to create a new cryptocurrency, called Unit-e and has teamed up with five other universities for the ultimate Bitcoin replacement. Unit-e will have none of the challenges and issues faced by Bitcoin today, such as scalability and the hunger for power.

The institute has also claimed that 2019 will see ever-increasing strange and mundane applications of blockchain technology. The applications, though, MIT claimed, would be more practical and useful.

 

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6 Top Unis, MIT Combine to Create Super Crypto

6 Top Unis, MIT Combine to Create Super Crypto

Professors from seven universities across the US including the prestigious Massachusetts Institute of Technology along with Stanford University and the University of California are busy creating their own super-fast alternative to Bitcoin.

If successful, the new cryptocurrency named Unit-e will be able to process thousands of transactions a second, something that Bitcoin is unable to do.

The initiative is a project created through Distributed Technology Research (DTR) a non-profit foundation formed by the universities, backed by hedge fund Pantera Capital Management LP to develop decentralized technologies.

DTR claims that mainstream adoption of Bitcoin is still held back due to inbuilt instructions constraining its ability to be used for what it was designed for; an everyday means of payment. Bitcoin’s scalability is a challenge; the frequency within which new blocks, as records of transactions, are known, can be created and their maximum size is capped. Joey Krug, co-chief investment officer at Pantera Capital in San Francisco, illustrates what he sees as the need for a faster payment tool:

“The mainstream public is aware that these networks don’t scale…We are on the cusp of something where if this doesn’t scale relatively soon, it may be relegated to ideas that were nice but didn’t work in practice: more like 3D printing than the internet.”

DTR is aiming at 10,000 transactions a second with the new model, which is warp speed when compared with current averages of between 3.3 and 7 transactions per second for Bitcoin and 10 to 30 transactions for Ethereum. To achieve greater speeds, DTR has deconstructed the blockchain tech which supports cryptocurrencies in attempt to improve every element.

However, success is not assured as there is no guarantee that in the short term Unit-e will take off according to Andrew Miller, head of the Unit-e independent technical steering committee. The assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign maintains that it is the long-term advantage which may gain traction with such technological breakthroughs.

 

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Analysts See 2019 as the Year of Institutional Crypto Investment

A number of investment funds and cryptocurrency firms are lauding 2019 as the year of institutional investor, 24 hrs before its arrival.

Many see large scale investment being re-examined in 2019 after being scared off by Bitcoin’s December dip. Wall Street notably stood back from the brink prior to the end of the year with Goldman Sachs’ much-publicized plans to open a crypto trading desk called “top-of-the-market-hype thinking” by one New York executive.

Nasdaq is already supporting crypto exchanges and the company is certainly not new to cryptocurrency’s underlying technology, blockchain. Apart from its long-term relationship with blockchain startup, Chain, it has recently announced a collaboration with cryptocurrency exchange Gemini.

Downunder, Henrik Andersson, chief investment officer of Apollo Capital Fund is upbeat on the prospect: “During the coming year we will see a gradual adoption from institutions,” he said, adding “We have the first US university endowments investing in funds” referring to major universities’ announcements that they were to invest in cryptocurrencies.

Harvard University, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Stanford University, Dartmouth College, and the University of North Carolina (UNC), have all made investments from their endowments into at least one crypto fund in 2018.

Another Australian, Every Capital’s director Tom Surman believes that the institutional phase has already begun, adding, “Massive retail offerings and institutional investors are probably the only groups that can meaningfully move the needle on the crypto market cap from here on.”

“The fact that David Swensen [Yale’s chief investment officer] put an investment into bitcoin — with his reputation on the line, his endowment on the line — tells you something…Some of the smartest people in the investing world think it’s a store of value,” said Mike Novogratz, who had been talking up the industry for much of 2018.

Around the world, national banking institutions continue to dabble with the crypto adoption, mainly as a step towards side-stepping internal financial complexities caused by sanctions or recession, but most banks are reticent to commit to launching cryptocurrencies of their own.  Most prefer to watch and wait.

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Low Pass Rate in Malta’s Crypto Exam Hinders Government’s Blockchain Aspirations

Malta’s Financial Services Authority’s (MFSA) cryptocurrency exam for financial practitioners has returned some unexpected results with a disappointing 39% pass rate.

The questions set by the MFSA were in accordance with Malta’s latest legislation, the Virtual Financial Assets Act (VFA), which requires financial practitioners wishing to move into cryptocurrency to gain agent certification through a pass in the new exam.

Clearly, the government hadn’t expected such poor results, particularly given late changes to questions to make them more manageable for examinees. This now means that 61% are unable to make the move from careers such as accountancy, auditing, and law. The 250 candidates sat a multiple-choice paper which was simplified towards the end when examiners noticed that the responses were going to result in a poor pass rate, but despite this, only 39% managed to get through the paper succes