DC Comics Launches Batman-Themed NFT’s; Warns Developers from Copying its Characters

DC Comics Launches Batman-Themed NFT’s; Warns Developers from Copying its Characters

  • Comic publisher DC Comics plans to launch a line of non-fungible tokens (NFTs), report states.
  • Developers and freelancers are warned against creating NFTs resembling DC Comics characters or projects.

According to reports arising last week, comic book publisher DC Comics is trying out the NFT marketplace, with a plan to launch their own line of unique NFTs. In a story first reported by Gizmodo, DC Comics is “exploring opportunities in the NFT marketplace” in a bid to combat freelancers and NFT developers using their intellectual property images such as Batman and Wonder Woman to sell their NFTs.

On March 11, DC Comics announced a partnership with Veve App, which creates digital NFTs, to launch its “Black and White statues of Batman” NFTs. The “Series 4” Batman collection comprises 4 different schemes each color scheme has a limited number of digital copies, increasing the rarity and value.

NFTs hype has grown exponentially in the past few weeks as sports teams, musicians, and players create their own tokens for sale. These assets are essentially digital certificates representing art, music, videos, or creative pieces, with the data stored using a unique token on a blockchain like Ethereum.

While the Batman NFT projects have launched, the letter did not timeline when DC Comics releases its batch of NFT tokens of other characters. The company is yet to respond to any questions on their NFT launch at the time of writing.

The news seems to collide with the recent sale of a “Wonder Woman-themed NFT” that fetched $1.85 million last week. The letter warns any developer and freelancer from issuing NFTs that bear any likeness to any DC Comic character. This probably due to DC not getting any share of the proceeds despite Wonder Woman’s creator.

The leaked letter states the company is “examining the complexities of the NFT marketplace” with a plan to stop unauthorized sales of NFTs bearing DC Comics characters. The company detests any sale of NFTs with DC characters from freelancers and employees as well. The letter states,

“Please note that the offering for sale of any digital images featuring DC’s intellectual property with or without NFTs, whether rendered for DC’s publications or rendered outside the scope of one’s contractual engagement with DC, is not permitted.”

“If you are approached by anyone interested in including any of your DC art in an NFT program, please let Lawrence Ganem, DC’s VP, Talent Services know.”

The trail of NFTs in sports can be traced back to the NBA’s Top Shot platform, which has sold thousands of NFTs, and recently NFL superstar running back Rob Gronkowski also launched his NFTs representing his four super bowl wins.

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Author: Lujan Odera

DeFi Projects Yearn.Finance and Pickle Working Together, Two New Tokens to be Created

On Tuesday, Yearn.Finance creator Andre Cronje wrote about Pickle and Yearn developers coming together to work in Symbiosis. Cronje said,

“This is done to reduce duplicate work, increase specialization, and to leverage shared expertise.”

The plan is to merge Pickle Jars and Yearn’s V2 Vaults.

For this, Pickle will be integrated into Yearn’s ecosystem where Pickle Jars will be deployed as Yearn vaults using the forthcoming v2 design and “Pickle and Yearn TVL merges.”

The total value locked in Yearn.Finance is nearly $600 million, while Pickle only has $39 million in TVL, as per DeBank.

Pickle will be introducing rewards Gauges through which tokens will be distributed, and Yearn Vault depositors get to earn additional rewards by depositing vault shares in gauges.

The devs of Pickle Finance will continue to write strategies for which they will earn a 10% performance fee.

Pickle Governance participants will receive DILL in exchange for locking PICKLE for set maturity dates while Yearn vault depositors will earn additional rewards locking Pickle for DILL, up to 2.5x — “the more DILL they hold the greater the rewards” with a minimum locking period of 1 week and maximum 4 years.

The Gauge deposit, withdrawal, performance, and protocol fees will go to DILL holders. Pickle will also earn rewards from all Yearn depositors who use their rewards gauges.

In the announcement, Cronje further shared that a new token, CORNICHON will be distributed proportionally to the victims of the recent Evil Jar attack. This new token is created to track the losses of the attack against Pickle’s DAI Jar.

Following the Pickle and Yearn collaboration news, the price of PICKLE surged past $20. As of writing, it is trading around $17, up from a roughly 66% crash resulting from the hack on the weekend. YFI, meanwhile, is trading at $23,700.

Some community members wondered why there wasn’t a government voting for this collaboration.

A Yearn Finance team member explained that there wasn’t anything for the yearn community to vote on because “creating a Yearn Vault is completely permissionless.” Given that the code is open, anyone can do this. He further pointed out that it is all primarily to do with the Pickle project.

“Yearn is for builders not bureaucrats,” concluded the Yearn.Finance team member.

Also Read: Yearn Finance Creator Andre Cronje Reveals New DeFi Project DeriSwap

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Author: AnTy

Ethereum 2.0 Devs Debate On The Legitimacy Of The Just-Launched ETH 2.0 Deposit Contract

Ethereum 2.0 Beacon Chain is nearing full mainnet release as developers announce an unconfirmed launch of the deposit contract. However, some developers have strongly warned against sending your ether (ETH) tokens to the contract before the official announcement from ETH 2.0 lead developers.

As the crypto social media world remains glued to the U.S. Presidential Election, Ethereum enthusiasts are rejoicing on the “possible” launch of the long-awaited Ethereum 2.0 deposit contract. Following the successful launch of the Zinken testnet, ETH 2.0 focused developers have continuously teased at the launch of Beacon Chain – Phase 0 – starting with the deposit contract.

A deposit contract was apparently posted on GitHub, gaining support from some developers on Ethereum as excitement levels across the community hit peak levels. No official announcement from the lead ETH 2.0 developers has surfaced yet.

The deposit contract will allow users to switch their “ETH 1.0” tokens to the proof of stake ETH tokens. This will lay the groundwork and foundation for users to start staking on the platform and earn rewards.

The contract was apparently posted from lead Ethereum Foundation developer Carl Beekhuizen’s GitHub account, making a case for the release of ‘v1.0.0 eth2.0-deposit-cli’. However, a section of the community has raised doubts on whether Carl’s account is hacked or compromised – with no other channel or developer reporting the release.

Despite the mainstream focus on the U.S Presidential elections, the Ethereum community still celebrated one of ETH 2.0 major steps to a full launch in 2020. A lead developer at ConsenSys, Ben Edgington, however, is cautioning users on sending their cash to the deposit smart contract yet stating the launch will be in the coming “hours.”

Afri Schoedon, a long time Ethereum contributor, previously stated the Beacon Chain would launch in November – a prospect that is increasingly looking to be true. Speaking to Coindesk, David Rugendyke, from ETH 2 staking DApp Rocket Pool cautioned the ETH community that the deposit contract would take a while, but it’s earing its mainnet launch soon. He said,

“This is a tool for generating keys needed for making deposits on the ETH2 deposit contract.

So it looks like they’re announcing this tool is ready to go for mainnet, at least that’s my take.”

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Author: Lujan Odera

OpenZeppelin Launches Defender Developer Suite Allowing DApp Building In ‘Minutes’

OpenZeppelin announced the launch of Defender, a developer suite aiming to help developers build smart contracts in “minutes,” on Tuesday. The suite aims to enhance and automate the development and the building of decentralized finance (DeFi) applications on Ethereum. Allowing developers to concentrate on creative inventions instead of spending time rewriting “fundamental code.”

So far, four of the top DeFi platforms – including Aave, dYdX, Compound, and Balancer – are using the product to automate the development operations when building DeFi products.

OpenZeppelin is an Ethereum focused development group providing a secure standard for decentralized applications on the blockchain. Doubling up as one of the top Ethereum smart contract audit firms, OpenZeppelin’s Defender suite will make it faster (development in minutes) to build dApps on a “secure self-secure infrastructure.”

Moreover, OpenZeppelin’s chief technology officer, Jonathan Alexander – speaking to Cointelegraph – stated that easing the process of creating DeFi apps could help reduce the risks of hacks and attacks on smart contracts.

Recently, the Harvest Finance smart contract was exploited as liquidity providers lost $25 million in staked funds. This has been a recurring problem across the decentralized finance ecosystem, including Balancer, YAM Finance, Uniswap, etc. – a problem Alexander believes “could have been avoided or reduced by following a careful security process.”

However, most startup teams lack a transparent security audit due to cost and a “comprehensive system that fully informs them on security best practices and how to assess risk,” he continued.

Props, a blockchain firm using OpenZeppelin’s Defender suite, CEO Peter Watts praised the ease-of-use and enhanced security it offers. He stated,

“Working with high-value smart contracts can be stressful. OpenZeppelin Defender relieves that stress by dramatically reducing the room for human error, making smart contract management simple and safe – it’s a no brainer that will improve the security and efficiency of any team.”

The Defender suite is open source, free, and available for any developer to use Ethereum test nets, including Ropsten, Rinkeby, Kovan, and Goerli.

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Author: Lujan Odera

Ethereum 2.0 Developers to Launch Zinken Testnet After Spadina ‘Dress Rehearsal’ Fails

After five years of waiting for Ethereum 2.0, developers may have to wait longer for its launch after a failed launch of the Spadina Network. The ETH 2.0 developers plan a third testnet, Zinken, which is expected to solve bugs and fix problems found in the previous two testnets – Spadina and Medalla.

ETH 2.0 is expected to introduce sharding protocols to increase Ethereum’s scalability and reduce blockchain gas costs. The main upgrade on ETH 2.0, however, is the proof-of-stake (PoS) consensus mechanism that is expected to replace the energy-intensive proof-of-work (PoW) currently available.

ETH 2.0 Phase 0, or the Beacon Chain, is expected to launch later in the year with the full implementation of the upgrade set to take over two years. According to original plans, Spadina was set to be one of the final testnets, or a “dress rehearsal, before the launch of Phase 0, but bugs and finality problems were discovered.”

One ETH 2.0 developer, Danny Ryan, wrote on Twitter that despite ETH 2.0 clients becoming more robust, the high latency times for finality raised several issues on the Spadina network, including “cli options, testnet config, bootnodes, and genesis calculation bugs.” Ryan further wrote,

“Even though we expect moderately low participation on a short-lived non-incentivized testnet, small errors in the client release process greatly exacerbated this problem, resulting in ~1/3 participation in the first few epochs.”

To respond to the issues stated above, the developers will run the Zinken testnet as a “dress rehearsal.”

The bugs, however, are not critical, Prysmatic Labs developer, Raul Jordan, stated. Comparing the failures in Spadina to Medalla’s earlier failures, Jordan believes the failures will be a “learning experience” for ETH 2.0 developers.

Also Read: Ethereum Miner Fees Beats August Record with a 47% Increase in September

Ryan confirmed the Zinken testnet dress rehearsal would be launched in the coming two weeks.

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Author: Lujan Odera

Apple is Censoring DeFi & ‘Stifling Innovation’ in Crypto Industry: Coinbase CEO

Apple having a row with developers and app providers is nothing new, but the tech giant seems to be especially targeting the cryptocurrency industry.

Last month, Epic games and Apple got into a legal battle when the Fortnite creator launched its own in-app payment system, which also involved the use of bitcoin and cryptos, to circumvent Apple’s “monopoly over in-app payments on iOS.”

As a fact of fact, Apple doesn’t allow to add the ability to earn money using crypto and access Defi apps or Dapps in their iOS apps, said Brian Armstrong, CEO of crypto exchange Coinbase, which has regularly come under fire for taking up the authorities’ side against their customers.

“Why would Apple want to prevent people from earning money during a recession? They seem to not be ok with it, if it uses cryptocurrency,” he said.

According to market participants, tech giants want to be everyone’s bank, and as Podfather Adam Curry told Joe Rogan, it is how they control people.

Stop This!

In a Twitter thread, Armstrong shared the struggles Coinbase is also going through with Apple, which end up creating a “worse” experience for customers.

Besides the company’s Coinbase Earn program, Apple doesn’t let them provide a list of decentralized apps, “which are really just websites” to iOS users.

In the past couple of months, the DeFi sector has exploded, reaching almost $10 billion, amidst the central banks’ quantitative easing and interest rate cuts, which have been devaluing the fiat currencies around the world.

“DeFi and Dapps are a major area of innovation in financial services that has seen rapid growth lately,” and has “enormous potential.”

But Apple doesn’t let companies help the “unbanked and underbanked” on the grounds that the “app offers cryptocurrency transactions in non-embedded software within the app, which is not appropriate for the App Store.”

According to Armstrong, Apple is “holding back progress in the world” by censoring the features and further protecting competition.

He likened Apple’s actions with Microsoft forcing users to use Internet Explorer on Windows, which “led to all their antitrust issues.”

“Apple, it’s time to stop stifling innovation in cryptocurrency. We would like to work with you productively on this. Some day, cryptocurrency could even be integrated into IAP to give people in emerging markets better access to the financial system globally,” said the Coinbase CEO.

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Author: AnTy

Ethereum Classic Labs Proposes New Security Plan To Prevent Future 51% Attacks

  • After suffering two major 51% attacks, Ethereum Classic (ETC) developers released a robust “Security Plan” to prevent future attacks.
  • The security plan will take three to six months to implement fully, the statement reads.
  • The plan short term changes, including tactics such as defensive mining and increased network monitoring
  • Plan also outlines long term changes, including changing the consensus algorithm and introduction of a treasury system.

In a published document on August 19, the ETC accelerator, Ethereum Classic Labs, released proposed solutions to further secure the network after two successive 51% attacks earlier in the month. The proposed plan, as mentioned before, will roll out in the next three to six months, with some of the security measures coming immediately.

Immediate changes to guard 51% attacks

The first immediate change to guard against these attacks is the implementation of ‘defensive mining.’ This will work through miners and mining pools cooperation to prevent attacks by raising the hash rate and maintain a consistent mining hash rate making it harder to pull off 51% attacks.

An enhanced monitoring service across the network will also harmonize the mining of ETC to prevent spikes in hash rate and keep in check prices across the mining pools. Monitoring the blockchain will further assist in quick identification of anomalies on the network. Notwithstanding, ETC Labs will closely work with exchanges in whitelisting services and work on implementing longer and safer confirmation times.

The ETC Core development team is also advocating for the immediate implementation of the ‘Permapoint’ finality arbitration system aiming “to inhibit chain reorganizations while maintaining consensus among nodes aggressively.”

The long term strategy

The long term security plan will be more community-driven as it will impact the core of the blockchain, the statement reads.

First option circles around increasing the resistance to 51% attacks with the Pirl Community proposing an introduction of ‘penalty blocks’ through ECIP 1092. This states that instead of the standard auto synchronizing of any offline pre-mined chain branch, “the new protocol should require peer proposing the longer and heavier chain to mine the penalty blocks.” This makes a 51% attack through chain reorganization more expensive and time-consuming. This could take up to 3 months to implement.

Secondly, a total change of current proof-of-work (PoW) system to either Keccak-256 or RandomX is proposed. Currently, ETC uses the same mining algorithm as Ethereum – Ethash – and a move to a new algorithm could help the blockchain “step out of the shade of the Ethereum network.” This is estimated to take up to 6 months to implement if the testnet works.

Also Read: OKEx Considers Delisting ETC After $5.6M Loss Due to a 51% Attack

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Author: Lujan Odera

Ethereum Developer Challenges Hackers to Break ETH2 Testnets; Collect $10k Reward

Danny Ryan, one of the core developers of the Ethereum developer community, has challenged white hat hackers to hack into a pair of ETH2 testnets.

Ethereum’s most significant upgrade since its inception where the Ethereum mainnet will transition from Proof-of-Work (PoW) based mining consensus to Proof-of-Stake (PoS) and has been dubbed Ethereum 2.0. The transition from Ethereum to Ethereum 2.0 will happen in phases through a series of hard forks.

While there is much debate on when ETH2 will launch, the testnets are already up and running, and Ethereum is expecting to add thousands of node validators to keep the network decentralized. Ethereum 2.0 is also believed to help Ethereum’s current struggle with scalability and transaction processing. Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin has claimed that the network would be able to process thousands of transactions per second. Ryan tweeted the invitation with a link to a Github page with the details and parameters of the challenge. He wrote:

“We welcome white hats to bring down the two beta-0 attacknets for reward and fame 🙂

Check out the new “attacknets” channel on the eth r&d discord for discussion.”

What is The Target For White Hat Hackers?

The target for the “attacknets” are two miniature versions of ETH2 clients, namely Lighthouse and Prysm, which have been designed to access the ETH 2.0 network. However, unlike mainstream clients, which comprise thousands of nodes, these attacknets miniature clients would have only four nodes.

The hackers are required to prevent blocks from confirming transactions and double-spending. These white hat hackers would be required to create a 51% attack scenario, which is what a quality blockchain was designed to prevent.

Many blockchain networks have hundreds of validators, but ETH 2.0 has set a target of 16,000 validators in the beginning and then expand it to hundreds of thousands of validators with time to keep it as decentralized as possible.

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Author: Hank Klinger

Blockchain Developer Platform Releases Alchemy Build, A Tool Suite for Faster Production

Alchemy, a blockchain startup, focuses on building developers’ tools to help them become more productive and focus more on actual product development. The blockchain startup boasts some of the most influential artists in the 21st century among its investors, which include the likes of Jay-Z and Will Smith. The startup raised $15 million in Series A funding round in 2019.

The startup announced its new product, called Alchemy Build suite, which consists of debugging and search tools and promises to reduce the amount of time spent by developers on issues not related to the actual product.

The suite primarily consists of 4 tools, which include an explorer to help developers quickly locate the bugs and errors in the system, a composer to help developers create prototypes, a visualizer to find stuck transactions, and a debugger.

Alchemy a Big Hit Among Ethereum Based Product Makers

Alchemy is relatively unknown for the amount of work and collaboration it has seen since its inception. Alchemy’s platform is actively used by Ethereum based products and Dapps developers for developing the infrastructure of their products. Its client list includes the famous gaming dApp CryptoKitties, Binance Wallet, and Opera Web Platform.

Nikil Viswanathan, the co-founder of Alchemy, believes their latest product in the form of a Build suite would enhance and help developers to create a better product in less time. He said:

“Ultimately, this means that…developers [can] build products faster, which means that the users get more products, and more innovation in the blockchain space happens overall.”

The startup’s goal has been to remove the hurdles in the path of developers, and many firms who have partnered or used Alchemy’s tools are a testament to that.

The digital asset marketplace Ethereum-based, OpenSea, has also used Alchemy’s tool for building on resonated the same. Devin Finzer, the CEO of OpenSera said:

“Alchemy Build has been crucial in helping us build and debug our global marketplace.”

Pantera Capital, one of the leading investors during the Series A funding round, applauded the progress that the startup has made since its beginning. Paul Veradittakit, a partner, said:

“Alchemy Build is improving the lives of Ethereum developers by leaps and bounds, helping drive the ecosystem towards its potential.”

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Author: James W

Open- Source Toast Wallet Shuts Down, Calls Out Ripple for ‘Abysmal Treatment’ of Developers

  • XRP developers of the Toast Wallet are calling it quits citing ‘abysmal treatment by Ripple” as the reason for leaving the project.
  • Launched in early 2017, the closure of Toast Wallet is heavily linked with the investment arm or Ripple, Xpring, looking over the wallet in its funding over the years.

The short tweet on its official page, Toast Wallet, XRP wallet that allows users to buy, sell and safely store their digital assets, will be shutting down due to the “abysmal treatment of community developers.”

As of June 22, 2020, the Toast App will no longer be available on mobile application stores denying access to additional users. The tweet reads:

The existing users’ wallets will be functional for a short time as users withdraw their assets to other wallets. The company has also given assurances to the safety of user assets.

“Existing Toast installs will continue to work, and funds are safe. We await a clear and transparent community developer support program from Xpring.”

The mention of Xpring in Toast’s tweet raises suspicion on whether the Ripple owned investment company had something to do with the wallet’s collapse. XRP Arcade, a crypto news publication, cites unnamed sources that claim the Xpring development fund did not extend to Toast, which led to its failure.

The remaining action is for users to send their XRP assets to other wallets quickly.

Send Users Xumm’s way

Toast Wallet has requested that users start migrating their assets to different XRP compatible wallets before the wallet is completely shut down.

Despite the dark cloud hovering above Toast Wallet’s open source project, Wietse Wind, one of XRP’s leading developers, took this opportunity to grab some of the users to choose his Xumm crypto wallet. After passing his graces, Wind wrote:

“I’d like to share the procedure to migrate from Toast to XUMM. I don’t want to come across as a vulture: I’m sorry to gain XUMM users this way.”

The open-source code will remain on the Toast Wallet GitHub page.

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Author: Lujan Odera