Maker Foundation Dissolves to Give the Community Full Control Over the Protocol and DAO

Maker Foundation Dissolves to Give the Community Full Control Over the Protocol and DAO

Original decentralized finance (DeFi) project Maker has now completely decentralized MakerDAO making the community now responsible for the protocol.

It started as a DAO, then changed into a Foundation which was a temporary solution for the development of the popular lending protocol, an end to having a self-governed self-operating DAO, which it has now achieved.

This week, Rune Christensen, the CEO of Maker Foundation, announced that the DAO is now fully self-sufficient, and the Foundation will formally dissolve within the next few months.

Over the period of the last six years, its stablecoin DAI has grown to become a $5.25 billion market cap crypto-backed stablecoin.

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In Q2 of 2021, the supply of DAI grew 76%, producing $43 million in earnings, up 136% since 1Q21 and 21,500% year-over-year.

While DAI has a 5% market share of the stablecoin market, the lending protocol has $5.45 billion in outstanding debt compared to $6.62 billion on Compound and $6.89 billion on Aave.

“MakerDAO continues to provide one of the best demonstrations of profitable growth in DeFi,” noted Ryan Watkins of Messari, adding the project also has a powerful business model having zero infrastructure costs with users paying gas, zero cost of capital with MakerDAO minting DAI, and extremely high margin with very low headcount requirements while having global reach without the hurdle of regional financial regulations.

Currently, the project has over $8 billion in assets locked in smart contracts of the Maker Protocol.

In terms of total value locked (TVL), the protocol has $5.85 billion comprising 2.43 million ETH, nearly 17k BTC, and 61.36 million DAI.

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Author: AnTy

“Ethereum Killer” Raising Up to $450M; Solana Foundation Rolls Out A $20M Fund to Expand Ecosystem

“Ethereum Killer” Raising Up to $450M; Solana Foundation Rolls Out A $20M Fund to Expand Ecosystem

Ethereum competitor Solana, which is seen as a potential “Ethereum killer,” has raised a big amount, which is between the $300 million and $450 million range.

“Fast, cheap, and deterministic, I’m even more bullish on Solana now,” commented Joe McCann, a margin trader and founder of Nodesource on this development.

Back in 2019, Solana raised $21.8 million led by Multicoin Capital and included BlockTower Capital and others.

As for the latest funding, the network was planning to close a smaller round in March but expanded their fundraising scope in response to high demand, reported Decrypt, citing multiple unnamed sources.

“I’m excited and impressed to see the recent growth of Solana’s business. They’ve had industry leading tech for a while, and it’s gratifying to see reality catching up,” Sam Bankman-Fried, CEO of crypto exchange FTX, which launched a decentralized exchange on Solana last year, told the publication.

Founded in 2017, the blockchain boasts 50,000 transactions per second compared to Ethereum’s 10 to 15 transactions per second throughput.

Solana’s native token SOL, which is known for showing strength in the bear market with fast recoveries, is currently trading at $41.50, only down 29.4% from its all-time high of $58 in mid-May, despite the latest deep correction the crypto market experienced.

SOL is one of the best performing tokens in the past 24 hours, 7-days, and with 2,045% gains year-to-date as well.

Elsewhere, Solana Foundation launched a $20 million fund to further expand its ecosystem in South Korea, just weeks after raising $60 million in funding from Hacken, Gate.io, and others to support projects in Brazil, Russia, India, and Ukraine.

Switzerland-based Solana Foundation is a not-for-profit organization whose mission is to build, support, and grow the Solana network and its community.

The Fund launched is in partnership with blockchain fund ROK Capital, which hopes to bolster Solana-based infrastructure projects including Web3, Defi, and NFTs. ROK Capital General Partner Brian Kang said,

“Solana is one of the fastest-growing networks in the industry, and in addition to injecting capital, this new fund will provide tailored services for projects to successfully accelerate in Korea.”

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Author: AnTy

Stellar Dev Foundation Invests $15M in AirTM to Improve Latin American Cross-Border Transfers

Stellar Dev Foundation Invests $15M in AirTM to Improve Latin American Cross-Border Transfers

  • The Stellar Development Foundation (SDF) is deepening its roots in Latin America with a $15 million funding round to Mexico City’s AirTM, a digital wallet, and peer-to-peer crypto exchange.

In an announcement on Tuesday, SDF’s venture arm, Stellar Enterprise Fund, announced the multi-million funding round aims to boost the development of AirTM’s platform. Additionally, SDF will integrate Stellar blockchain to the platform in the coming year to make the transactions cheaper, a statement from the team reads.

Since the launch of the Enterprise Fund, this constitutes the largest ever investment from SDF. Previous investments by SDF include a $3 million funding round in Settle Network, an Argentine payments channel, and U.S.-based credits firm Tribal Credit, which also received $3 million at the end of April. These investments target the growth of digital payments and cross-border transfers across Latin American countries.

In a similar fashion, the $15 million investment will allow AirTM to enhance its financial services in Latin America while widening its market base. With the integration of Stellar, payments and cross-border transfers are expected to become cheaper and faster, which improves the financial access to Latin American people who have suffered under “fragmented financial systems” for long, SDF Executive Director Denelle Dixon said in the statement.

Adding to Dixon’s statement, AirTM CEO Ruben Galindo Steckel stated the investment would also allow businesses to flourish in Latin America – making them more compatible and open to the global economy. The investment further boosts the goal of the SDF to help “consumers and businesses throughout the developing world access stable money that holds its value” which “is instant to transfer with no fees, and can be withdrawn as local currency whenever, and wherever it’s needed” he continued.

Over the past six months, SDF also invested $5 million in blockchain payment firm, Wyre, to help introduce various payment application programming interfaces, commonly known as APIs, which can integrate with different apps within the Stellar ecosystem. In December, SDF invested $3 million (paid in Stellar Lumens, or XLM) to Settle to focus on fiat-to-crypto on-ramps and boost transactions across the LATAM region.

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Author: Lujan Odera

Human Rights Foundation Provides Grants to Bitcoiners to Boost Education and Software Development

Human Rights Foundation Provides Grants to Bitcoiners to Boost Education and Software Development

  • Human Rights Foundation (HRF) releases its latest Bitcoin development grants.
  • The $70,000 grant was dispersed to four teams focusing on education and software development.

The Human Right Foundation (HRF), a New York-based nonprofit organization, gave its latest round of Bitcoin development grants on Tuesday. The organization focuses on boosting the adoption and development of Bitcoin solutions globally, the latest grant focusing on software development and education efforts in the space.

According to a report, the HRF grant was released to four teams. Muun wallet, a lightning network-based wallet, and Jesse Posner, a Bitcoin core developer, received $25,000 to build software solutions on Bitcoin.

Jesse Posner, a former Coinbase employee, is developing the Discrete Log Contracts (DLCs), threshold signatures, and adapter signatures. The solution aims to reduce the data backlog on the Bitcoin blockchain by computing most data off-chain. Apart from offering scalability, Posner stated the DCL would also improve the contracts’ security on the blockchain.

Muun wallet, on the other hand, is a Bitcoin Lightning Network-based wallet that allows penny-transactions while reducing on-chain transaction fees. The Argentinian firm aims to make crypto accessible to everyone through fast and low fee payment channels. Muun wallet founder Dario Sneidermanis said,

“Being Argentinians, we’ve seen first-hand why this is sorely needed, maybe a little bit earlier than the rest of the world, so it’s important that organizations such as the HRF are paying attention to this.”

Independent journalist Janine, known for the Block Digest podcast and open-source incubator Blockchain Commons, will receive $15,000 to further blockchain education and training.

Janine, an internet privacy and blockchain advocate, has been at the forefront of gatekeeping privacy in the crypto ecosystem. She runs a blog, This Month in Privacy, a monthly roundup of developments and news on Bitcoin, internet privacy, and cybersecurity. Speaking to Coindesk, Janine said she might use the grant funding to launch new avenues to give the blog a multi-media component, teasing the launch of a Q&A series to speak on the web privacy, including Bitcoin.

Finally, Blockchain Commons, a non-profit, open-source Bitcoin and blockchain incubator, will use its funding to enhance Bitcoin education while helping human rights activists worldwide with decentralized financial tools.

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Author: Lujan Odera

Reddit Partners with Ethereum Foundation to Create Scaling Solutions on Its Social App

Reddit Partners with Ethereum Foundation to Create Scaling Solutions on Its Social App

  • Reddit partners with the Ethereum Foundation to scale its “Community Points Rewards” system.
  • The points system rewards quality user posts with crypto tokens.
  • The new system will be open source and available for every developer to use.

In mid-June 2020, Reddit announced a possible partnership with the Ethereum Foundation to scale its ‘Community Points Rewards’ system. The move was widely regarded as the first step the popular discussion social app was taking in creating a decentralized community to promote freedom and incentivize “quality” posts on the platform. Now, Reddit is formalizing its steps to decentralization with an official partnership with Ethereum’s lead development team, the Ethereum Foundation, announced on Wednesday.

Reddit’s “first-ever blockchain partnership” aims to boost community participation through blockchain, accelerate scaling and development tools for Ethereum’s ecosystem and bring value and decentralization to its millions of customers globally, the post reads.

The two companies worked together on the Scaling Bake Off competition in August 2020 to promote decentralization on Reddit. A total of 22 projects submitted their detailed scaling solutions pitches, including Matic Network, NEAR Protocol, and SKALE Network.

The new partnership will focus on scaling the Community Rewards Points system for a start, the post reads. The point’s system will reward users with crypto bonuses for “quality posts” and comments. The developments will be led by the Reddit development team, with help from the Ethereum Foundation, but the system will be available for anyone to use. The Reddit post reads,

“We intend to help accelerate the progress being made on scaling and develop the technology needed to launch large-scale applications like Community Points on Ethereum.”

“The scaling technology developed through this partnership will be open-sourced and publicly available for anyone to use.”

The Community Points Rewards system is currently in the beta testing phase on the Rinkeby Network and tested in two communities on Reddit – r/CryptoCurrency and r/FortNiteBR. Each of these discussion groups has over 1 million users, and plans are underway to scale the rewards to every 430 million users on the social platform.

The report further states the rewards system aims to “utilize decentralized technology to empower individuals to have a sense of accountability and more ownership in the communities they create and contribute to.”

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Author: Lujan Odera

Stellar Invests $3 Million in Digital Assets Settlement Network Across LATAM

Stellar Development Foundation is investing up to $3 million, paid in Lumens (XLM), in digital assets settlement network across LATAM, Settle Network.

This investment will help boost the payment tools of Settle Network that are focused around stablecoins, including fiat-to-crypto onramps, stablecoin issuance, and payment processing.

As we reported, the team of Stellar is currently working on making XLM useful globally. Denelle Dixon, the CEO and Executive Director of SDF, said,

“Settle Network is delivering on the vision and mission of Stellar, putting blockchain technology and access to finance into the hands of people that need it.”

Founded in 2018, Settle Network is a Stellar-based platform that provides digital asset settlement across LATAM and users of Argentine Peso and Brazilian Reais stablecoins.

Stablecoins have been one of the main themes in 2020, with their supply exploding. Stellar is now ready to take the help of stablecoins for “international remittances and cross-border payments.”

Besides Settle Network, SDFs Enterprise Fund has also invested in Abra, SatoshiPay, and DSTOQ. Jason Chlipala, Chief Operating Office of SDF, said,

“We created the Enterprise Fund to support inspiring businesses like Settle Network that demonstrate the value of Stellar, bring value to the Stellar ecosystem, and represent our mission.”

“We are proud of the impact this fund has made in its first year and look forward to furthering its reach in 2021.”

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Author: AnTy

Cardano and Nervos Research Initiative to Find Solutions to UXTO Security Issues

Cardano Foundation is partnering with the Nervos network in a joint research initiative to secure smart contracts, especially on a blockchain, using the Unspent Transaction Output (UTXOs) transaction model. The research efforts come in handy as Cardano aims to take over the decentralized finance (DeFi) ecosystem following the Goguen testnet.

Cardano, and Nervos, two public chains using the UXTO accounting method on their networks, announced a joint research partnership that will see them share proprietary information and write research papers on open-source accounting models, UXTO-based security, and develop a universal standard of accounting across blockchains.

This initiative is set to enhance and develop better security systems on UXTO-based blockchains to provide more efficient interactions with DeFi applications.

First conceptualized and adopted by Bitcoin (BTC), the UTXO accounting model has grown as the most secure across blockchains. A UTXO accounting model entails recording the number of coins remaining in a specific wallet after executing a transaction while monitoring every transaction continuously. This accounting model provides a more secure network than the account-based model, which is used by smart contract-based blockchains such as Ethereum (ETH) and ERC20 tokens, the statement further reads.

The account-based accounting model offers a less cumbersome network to store transactions as opposed to the UTXO module. Account-based accounting models only focus on the balance of the wallet account, ignoring the individual transactions within the address, opening up a loophole to steal funds while no one is monitoring the wallet. Kevin Wang, co-founder at Nervos said,

“UTXOs are superior to account models in many ways and provide improved security, privacy, and scalability, all of which are critical for DeFi.”

This makes the account-based model susceptible to hacks and external attacks, as seen repeatedly across the DeFi space in 2020. According to a CipherTrace report, the overall value of DeFi hacks in 2020 rose to nearly $100 million as hackers turned their eye to the ballooning space.

Cardano and Nervos are both lining up to nab DeFi projects from Ethereum – both taking a step forward in 2020 to strengthen their market position. Nervos Network announced a collaboration with Huobi exchange to develop blockchain framework testnets on DeFi applications in March this year. Additionally, the network also added Chainlink’s decentralized oracles to enhance smart contract development on the platform.

Cardano recently announced its first-ever DeFi project built on the platform, Bondly, lending and borrowing DeFi app, earlier this week. This followed the launch of “Project Catalyst,” a $250,000 fund aiming at incentivizing DeFi developers to build on Cardano.

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Author: Lujan Odera

Ethereum Gets A New Smart Contract Language Dubbed ‘Fe’ Aiming to Attract More Developers

The Ethereum Foundation has announced a new smart contract language dubbed ‘Fe’ which is currently in development. This language derives its fundamentals from an Ethereum compiler known as ‘Vyper’; its code is written on Ethereum’s Virtual Machine (EVM) Rust programming language.

According to Ethereum software engineer Christoph Burgdorf, the development of Fe comes as a complement to solidity and will have a net positive effect on the ecosystem,

“The majority of applications deployed on the Ethereum network these days are written in Solidity. We believe the Solidity team is doing a great job and are clearly doing a lot of things right to maintain their current market share.

However, we also believe that more choices for developers will be a net positive for the ecosystem,”

Fe, which is named after the periodic table element Ferrum or Iron, pivots more towards the python programming language. Christoph said that this new language results from the demand for a simpler and more python-friendly alternative to solidity.

This new smart contract language is set to push forward the goals set out by Vyper compiler; they include accurate gas and transaction cost estimations. According to Christoph, the initial goal was to create a Vyper alternative, but the languages ended up taking different syntaxes. He added that,

“At this early stage in development, the differences between Fe and Vyper are still limited. For now, one will notice that Fe borrows a few syntactic properties from Rust.

It’s likely that Fe will begin to more closely resemble Rust as we continue to add new features.”

With Fe’s development ramping up in the recent past, the Ethereum Foundation has expressed optimism in integrating support functions to complete this new smart contract language. Christoph noted that it could be as early as this year, although the compiler will not yet be ready for production at the time,

“To be clear, the compiler will in no way be a suitable choice for a production ERC20 by that time, but we look forward to demonstrating the capabilities of Fe with such a well understood working example.”

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Author: Edwin Munyui

The XRP Ledger Foundation Launches To Accelerate XRPL Adoption And Development

The XRP Ledger Foundation, a non-profit, announced its official launch on September 24. The Ledger Foundation would be responsible for supporting the development as well as accelerate the adoption of the XRP Ledger across the globe.

The non-profit organization has received multiple grants from several organizations, including the remittance firm, Ripple and content moderation firm, Coil, and the crypto wallet service provider GateHub. The XRP Ledger Foundation also hopes to raise more funds in the near future from other stakeholders of the decentralized space.

The XRP Ledger has grown in popularity within the banking and financial industries, which make use of the ledger for facilitating instant cross-border transactions at a minimal fee.

The XRP Ledger Foundation aims to expand and accelerate the adoption of its dedicated ledger while also improving the underlying technology behind it. Apart from working on the XRP ledger, the foundation would also create a unique node list, support community-based initiatives, and help the developers to strengthen the ecosystem.

The key role of the foundation also includes securing capital for its developers. Wietse Wind, one of the most prominent XRP developers, which is also a member of the Fund’s board, suggested that they have already paid developers who would exclusively work for the XRPL.

The foundation would also work to create a dedicated XRP community fund, with the sole purpose would be to bring formal engagement to the community.

The announcements made by the foundation met with great enthusiasm from the community. David Schwarz, Ripple’s CTO, commented that Ripple is committed to supporting the growth of XRP ledger, and the foundation would further their goal in enhancing the ecosystem.

David Schwarz said:

“We and the community have worked over the past 8 years to dramatically increase the decentralization, performance, and feature set of the XRP Ledger and remain committed to its future growth and innovation.”

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Author: Rebecca Asseh

Tezos Foundation to Pay XTZ Token Sale Investors $25M to Settle Class Action Lawsuit

After three years, a long-running class-action lawsuit against Tezos Foundation has come to a close. A U.S. District Judge Richard Seeborg from the Northern District of California approved a $25 million payment by Tezos Foundation to aggrieved investors.

The class-action lawsuit alleged that Tezos Foundation conducted an unregistered initial coin offering (ICO) in 2017.

According to the court documents filed last week, Tezos, as well as its founders Arthur and Kathleen Breitman, will part with $25 million to the aggrieved investors. The settlement was first put on the table in March earlier this year but was settled last week.

According to the settlement agreement, the attorneys will be paid about $8.5 million of the total sum. The investors who underwent a loss after taking part in the Tezos ICO will share the remaining $16.5 million. However, the investors who gained after participating in the ICO will not be included in the sharing of the funds.

Tezos Foundation, in March, resolved to settle the class action lawsuit since it was expensive as well as time-consuming. However, the firm maintained that the case lacked merit.

In 2017, Tezos conducted one of the most successful ICOs of the year, raising more than $232 million through the sale of its XTZ governance token. However, before the firm could celebrate the success, a California based law firm filed a class-action lawsuit alleging that Tezos sold unregistered security to US-based investors.

According to the Federal Securities Law, a company should not sell security tokens before registering with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). These types of tokens must pass the Howey Test, and XTZ failed.

Following the filing of a class-action lawsuit, Tezos asked the court to dismiss the case as it lacked merit, but Judge Seeborg dismissed the lawsuit filed by Tezos attorneys.

Judge Seeborg’s order also states that the plaintiffs cannot make a future claim against Tezos as well as other defendants.

Although the class lawsuit has been settled, the issue of whether XTZ is a security or not remains unresolved.

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Author: Joseph Kibe