On this page you will find my positions in Crypto. The list is random, and not built up on how “big” I’m invested in the positions.
Bitcoin is a peer-to-peer online currency, meaning that all transactions happen directly between equal, independent network participants, without the need for any intermediary to permit or facilitate them. Bitcoin was created, according to Nakamoto’s own words, to allow “online payments to be sent directly from one party to another without going through a financial institution.”
Some concepts for a similar type of a decentralized electronic currency precede BTC, but Bitcoin holds the distinction of being the first-ever cryptocurrency to come into actual use.
Bitcoin’s original inventor is known under a pseudonym, Satoshi Nakamoto. As of 2020, the true identity of the person — or organization — that is behind the alias remains unknown.
On October 31, 2008, Nakamoto published Bitcoin’s whitepaper, which described in detail how a peer-to-peer, online currency could be implemented. They proposed to use a decentralized ledger of transactions packaged in batches (called “blocks”) and secured by cryptographic algorithms — the whole system would later be dubbed “blockchain.”
Just two months later, on January 3, 2009, Nakamoto mined the first block on the Bitcoin network, known as the genesis block, thus launching the world’s first cryptocurrency.
However, while Nakamoto was the original inventor of Bitcoin, as well as the author of its very first implementation, over the years a large number of people have contributed to improving the cryptocurrency’s software by patching vulnerabilities and adding new features.
Bitcoin’s source code repository on GitHub lists more than 750 contributors, with some of the key ones being Wladimir J. van der Laan, Marco Falke, Pieter Wuille, Gavin Andresen, Jonas Schnelli and others.
Cardano is a proof-of-stake blockchain platform that says its goal is to allow “changemakers, innovators and visionaries” to bring about positive global change.
The open-source project also aims to “redistribute power from unaccountable structures to the margins to individuals” — helping to create a society that is more secure, transparent and fair.
Cardano was founded back in 2017, and the ADA token is designed to ensure that owners can participate in the operation of the network. Because of this, those who hold the cryptocurrency have the right to vote on any proposed changes to the software.
The team behind the layered blockchain say that there have already been some compelling use cases for its technology, which aims to allow decentralized apps and smart contracts to be developed with modularity.
Cardano is used by agricultural companies to track fresh produce from field to fork, while other products built on the platform allow educational credentials to be stored in a tamper-proof way, and retailers to clamp down on counterfeit goods.
Cardano was founded by Charles Hoskinson, who was also one of the co-founders of the Ethereum network. He is the CEO of IOHK, the company that built Cardano’s blockchain.
In an interview for CoinMarketCap’s Crypto Titans series, Hoskinson said that he got involved in cryptocurrencies back in 2011 — and dabbled in mining and trading. He explained that his first professional involvement in the industry came in 2013, when he created a course about Bitcoin that ended up being taken by 80,000 students.
As well as being a technology entrepreneur, Hoskinson is also a mathematician. In 2020, his technology company donated ADA worth $500,000 to the University of Wyoming’s Blockchain Research and Development Lab.
Cardano is one of the biggest blockchains to successfully use a proof-of-stake consensus mechanism, which is less energy intensive than the proof-of-work algorithm relied upon by Bitcoin. Although the much larger Ethereum is going to be upgrading to PoS, this transition is only going to take place gradually.
The project has taken pride in ensuring that all of the technology developed goes through a process of peer-reviewed research, meaning that bold ideas can be challenged before they are validated. According to the Cardano team, this academic rigor helps the blockchain to be durable and stable — increasing the chance that potential pitfalls can be anticipated in advance.
In 2020, Cardano held a Shelley upgrade that aimed to make its blockchain “50 to 100 times more decentralized” than other large blockchains. At the time, Hoskinson predicted that this would pave the way for hundreds of assets to run on its network.
To begin with, it’s important to understand the difference between XRP, Ripple and RippleNet. XRP is the currency that runs on a digital payment platform called RippleNet, which is on top of a distributed ledger database called XRP Ledger. While RippleNet is run by a company called Ripple, the XRP Ledger is open-source and is not based on blockchain, but rather the previously mentioned distributed ledger database.
The RippleNet payment platform is a real-time gross settlement (RTGS) system that aims to enable instant monetary transactions globally. While XRP is the cryptocurrency native to the XRP Ledger, you can actually use any currency to transact on the platform.
While the idea behind the Ripple payment platform was first voiced in 2004 by Ryan Fugger, it wasn’t until Jed McCaleb and Chris Larson took over the project in 2012 that Ripple began to be built (at the time, it was also called OpenCoin).
XRP was created by Ripple to be a speedy, less costly and more scalable alternative to both other digital assets and existing monetary payment platforms like SWIFT.
RippleNet’s ledger is maintained by the global XRP Community, with Ripple the company as an active member. The XRP Ledger processes transactions roughly every 3-5 seconds, or whenever independent validator nodes come to a consensus on both the order and validity of XRP transactions — as opposed to proof-of-work mining like Bitcoin (BTC). Anyone can be a Ripple validator, and the list is currently made up of Ripple along with universities, financial institutions and others.
Maker (MKR) is the governance token of the MakerDAO and Maker Protocol — respectively a decentralized organization and a software platform, both based on the Ethereum blockchain — that allows users to issue and manage the DAI stablecoin.
Initially conceived in 2015 and fully launched in December 2017, Maker is a project whose task is to operate DAI, a community-managed decentralized cryptocurrency with a stable value soft-pegged to the US dollar.
MKR tokens act as a kind of voting share for the organization that manages DAI; while they do not pay dividends to their holders, they do give the holders voting rights over the development of Maker Protocol and are expected to appreciate in value in accordance with the success of DAI itself.
The Maker ecosystem is one of the earliest projects on the decentralized finance (DeFi) scene: the industry that seeks to build decentralized financial products on top of smart-contract-enabled blockchains, such as Ethereum.
MakerDAO, the first entity inside the larger Maker ecosystem, was created in 2015 by Rune Christensen, an entrepreneur from Sealand, Denmark.
Christensen graduated from Copenhagen University with a degree in biochemistry and studied international business at the Copenhagen Business School. Prior to MakerDAO, he co-founded and managed the Try China international recruiting company.
As of October 2020, DAI is one of the most popular stablecoins (cryptocurrencies whose prices are pegged to the USD or another traditional currency). It is the 25th largest cryptocurrency at over $800 million in market capitalization and it has more active addresses than USDT — the largest stablecoin on the market.
MKR’s unique proposition lies in the fact that it allows its holders to directly participate in the process of governing DAI. Every holder of Maker tokens has the right to vote on a number of changes to the Maker Protocol, with their voting power depending on the size of their MKR stake. Some of the aspects of the protocol the holders can vote on are:
This ability to participate in the management of one of the largest stablecoins on the market is what drives the demand for MKR tokens and correspondingly affects their value.
COTI markets itself as the first enterprise-grade fintech platform that empowers organizations to build their own payment solutions as well as digitize any currency to save time as well as money.
COTI is one of the world’s first blockchain protocols that is optimized for decentralized payments and designed for use by merchants, governments, payment DApps and stablecoin issuers.
COTI Pay is the first application. It describes itself as a fully encompassing finance on the blockchain. The COTI Group launched in March of 2017, while the Staking Platform Launched on Jan. 1, 2020.
It is an ecosystem that is designed specifically to meet all of the challenges associated with traditional finance, including latency, fees, global inclusion and risks. This is done through the introduction of the DAG-based protocol as well as infrastructure that is completely scalable, private, inclusive and fast.
The ecosystem has DAG-based blockchain, proof-of-trust consensus algorithm, multiDAG, GTS (Global Trust System), a universal payment solution and a payment gateway.
COTI was founded by Samuel Falkon and David Assaraf.
Samuel Falkon is the co-founder of COTI Group and works as the VP of business development at COTI Group. He is also the chief revenue officer at Paywize, as well as the founder of Gil Scott Ltd.
David Assaraf is the co-founder of COTI Group, and he also co-founded Frequants and was a member at the board of directors at an amusement park.
The thing that makes COTI unique is COTI’s platform.
This platform enables companies to effortlessly create advanced fintech products and save time, data and money. COTI pay can process every kind of payment type, both in terms of online payments as well as offline ones. This includes crypto and stablecoins, as well as credit cards and even native coins. It has built-in financing to boot, with interest earned on deposits and loans. This also connects with the white label payment network.
Traditional payment systems simply cost both merchants and customers amounts up to billions of dollars on an annual basis. As such, the white label payment network is a global payment network for users and merchants that make transactions freely throughout a digital wallet, coin and much more.
COTI is also the world’s first platform that is optimized for the creation of coins that are stable in price. As such, a user has the ability to issue their own stable coin and regain full control over both their money and their data.
Theta (THETA) is a blockchain powered network purpose-built for video streaming. Launched in March 2019, the Theta mainnet operates as a decentralized network in which users share bandwidth and computing resources on a peer-to-peer (P2P) basis.The project is advised by Steve Chen, co-founder of YouTube and Justin Kan, co-founder of Twitch.
Theta features its own native cryptocurrency token, THETA, which performs various governance tasks within the network, and counts Google, Binance, Blockchain ventures, Gumi, Sony Europe and Samsung as Enterprise validators, along with a Guardian network of thousands of community-run guardian nodes.
Developers say that the project aims to shake up the video streaming industry in its current form — centralization, poor infrastructure and high costs mean that end users often end up with a poor experience. Content creators likewise earn less revenue due to the barriers between them and end users.
Theta was co-founded by Mitch Liu and Jieyi Long in 2018. Liu has a long history in the gaming and video industries, co-founding video advertising firm Tapjoy, mobile social gaming startup Gameview Studios, and THETA.tv, the live streaming platform whose DApp was the first to be built on the Theta protocol.
Long is Theta’s second co-founder and CTO, following similar multi-year experience in design automation, gaming, virtual reality, and large scale distributed systems. He authored multiple peer-reviewed academic papers and holds various patents in video streaming, blockchain and virtual reality.
Theta now has a modest team, and its official website lists strategic corporate investors as Samsung NEXT, Sony Innovation Fund, media investors BDMI Bertelsmann Digital Media Investments, CAA Creative Artists Agency, and traditional Silicon Valley VCs including DCM, Sierra Ventures and the VR Fund.
Theta’s main business concept is to decentralize video streaming, data delivery and edge computing, making it more efficient, cost-effective and fair for industry participants.
The network runs on a native blockchain, with two native tokens, known as Theta (THETA), Theta Fuel (TFUEL), powering the internal economy.
Theta’s appeal is threefold: viewers get rewarded with better quality streaming service, content creators improve their earnings and middlemen — video platforms — save money on building infrastructure and increase advertising and subscription revenues.
Users have an incentive to both watch network content and share network resources, as rewards come in the form of TFUEL tokens.
The platform is open source, and token holders receive governance powers as with many proof-of-stake (PoS)-based blockchain ecosystems.
In addition to video, data and computing, Theta caters to developers looking to launch decentralized applications (DApps) on its fully featured EVM-compatible Smart contract platform.
VeChain (VET) is a blockchain-powered supply chain platform. Begun in 2015 and launched in June 2016, VeChain aims to use distributed governance and Internet of Things (IoT) technology to create an ecosystem which solves some of the major problems with supply chain management.
The platform uses two in-house tokens, VET and VTHO, to manage and create value based on its VeChainThor public blockchain.
The idea is to boost the efficiency, traceability and transparency of supply chains while reducing costs and placing more control in the hands of individual users.
VeChain is the product of creator and co-founder Sunny Lu, an IT executive who was formerly CIO of Louis Vuitton China.
Lu has since become a well-known name within the cryptocurrency industry. He has drawn attention to the ability of blockchain technology to solve transparency in particular, arguing that it can create “trust-free” structures which do not suffer from corruption as part of the supply chain.
Fellow co-founder Jay Zhang, who directs VeChain’s global corporate structure, governance, and financial management, previously worked for both Deloitte and PriceWaterhouseCoopers in the finance and risk management sphere.
Having launched in June 2016, VeChain is one of the oldest dedicated blockchain supply chain platforms on the market.
VeChain exists to disrupt traditional supply chain models, an industry which before blockchain had remained little changed over the decades.
Using transparent technology with no single point of weakness or control allows for greater security, efficiency and ease of tracking products in a given supply chain, while reducing cost through trustless automation.
VeChain’s model thus appeals to businesses looking to reduce supply chain friction and give a more transparent impression to clients.
VeChain’s official literature notes that its unique proposition lies in its dual-token setup, among other features. In-house token fees combine with charges for various services to generate operating income for the company, while token holders can engage in activities such as staking, thus providing liquidity in return for rewards.
Synthetix is a decentralized finance (DeFi) protocol that provides on-chain exposure to a wide variety of crypto and non-crypto assets. The protocol is based on the Ethereum (ETH) blockchain and offers users access to highly liquid synthetic assets (synths). Synths track and provide returns on the underlying asset without requiring one to directly hold the asset.
The platform aims to broaden the cryptocurrency space by introducing non-blockchain assets, providing access to a more robust financial market.
The network was launched in September 2017 by Kain Warwick under the name Havven (HAV). About a year later the company rebranded to Synthetix.
Kain Warwick is the founder of Synthetix and a non-executive director at the blueshyft retail network. Prior to founding Synthetix, Warwick has worked on several other cryptocurrency projects. He also founded Pouncer, a live auction site exclusive to Australia.
Peter McKean, the project’s CEO, has over two decades of experience in software development. He previously worked as a programmer at ICL Fujitsu.
Jordan Momtazi, the COO of Synthetix, is a business strategist, market analyst and sales leader with several years of experience in blockchain, cryptocurrency, digital payments and e-commerce systems.
Justin J. Moses, the CTO, was the former director of engineering at MongoDB and deputy practice head of engineering at Lab49. He also co-founded Pouncer.
Synthetix is a decentralized exchange (DEX) and a platform for synthetic assets. The protocol is designed in a way that exposes users to the underlying assets via synths, without having to hold the underlying asset.
The platform allows users to autonomously trade and exchange synths. It also has a staking pool where holders can stake their SNX tokens and are rewarded with a share of the transaction fees on the Synthetix Exchange.
The platform tracks the underlying assets using smart contract price delivery protocols called oracles. Synthetix allows users to trade synths seamlessly, without liquidity/slippage issues. It also eliminates the need for third-party facilitators.
SNX tokens are used as collateral for the synthetic assets that are minted. This means that whenever synths are issued, SNX tokens are locked up in a smart contract.
Since launch, the protocol has transitioned to the Optimistic Ethereum mainnet to help reduce the gas fees on the network and lower oracle latency.
Enjin Coin is a project of Enjin, a company that provides an ecosystem of interconnected, blockchain-based gaming products. Enjin’s flagship offering is the Enjin Network, a social gaming platform through which users can create websites and clans, chat, and host virtual item stores.
Enjin allows game developers to tokenize in-game items on the Ethereum blockchain. It uses Enjin Coin, an ERC-20 token, to back the digital assets issued using its platform, meaning that items can be bought, sold and traded with real-world value.
Enjin Coin (ENJ) is a digital store of value used to back the value of blockchain assets like non-fungible tokens (NFTs). Every asset minted with the Enjin Platform contains ENJ, a minting resource which is locked inside NFTs and removed from circulation. Minting blockchain assets with ENJ provides a variety of benefits to creators and users:
The Enjin blockchain ecosystem aims to offer software products that make it easy for everyone to develop, trade, monetize, and market with blockchain.
Founded in 2009, Enjin has roots in the gaming industry, with the company’s first product, a gaming community platform called the Enjin Network, growing to 20 million users over the course of a decade.
In 2017 following an ICO, Enjin established itself as a leading blockchain ecosystem developer, building a suite of software products that enable anyone to easily mint, manage, trade, distribute, and integrate blockchain assets.
Enjin’s co-founder Witek Radomski wrote the code for one of the first ever non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and is also the co-author of the ERC-1155 Ethereum token standard.
Built on top of an on-chain infrastructure, the Enjin ecosystem enables game developers and businesses of all sizes to use tokenized digital assets as part of their acquisition, retention, engagement, and monetization strategies. The Enjin ecosystem is fueled by Enjin Coin (ENJ), a cryptocurrency used to back the value of blockchain assets.
Enjin was founded as a gaming community platform in 2009 by Maxim Blagov and Witek Radomski, with Blagov becoming CEO and assuming responsibility for the creative direction of the company and Radomski serving as chief technical officer, responsible for the technical development of its products. Blagov has described himself as having experience in creative direction, marketing, and software project management and design.
The idea of introducing blockchain to Enjin was first proposed by Radomski after he became interested in Bitcoin (BTC) in 2012, eventually convincing the company to accept it as a payment option. After learning about Ethereum and smart contracts, he decided he wanted to create his own blockchain-integrated software. Radomski is also the author of the ERC-1155 token standard, a new standard for Ethereum-issued tokens that was introduced in June 2018, finalized in June 2019, and is used for minting both fungible and nonfungible tokens.
According to co-founder Radomski, Enjin Coin is unique in that every token minted with Enjin Platform, the company’s blockchain asset development platform that launched in February 2020, is directly backed by ENJ, giving in-game items real-world liquidity. Similarly, Blagov has stated that the company is focused on adoption, saying he imagines a future in which millions of gamers use digital items backed by Enjin Coin without even knowing it exists.
Enjin Coin uses a series of smart contracts to which game developers send ENJ to mint new, unique fungible or nonfungible ERC-1155 tokens. These tokens can be traded on the Enjin Marketplace, which launched in September 2019, or exchanged for their backing ENJ at any time. As more custom tokens are minted, more ENJ is removed from the ecosystem, thus making it scarcer.
According to its whitepaper, Enjin Coin uses a series of both on-chain and off-chain processes. When a transaction is completed within the Enjin ecosystem, a Trusted Platform contacts the users’ smart wallets, and the website or game is updated immediately with a placeholder or nontradable version of the digital item until the transaction has been validated by the Ethereum blockchain.
SingularityNET is a blockchain-powered platform that allows anybody to easily “create, share, and monetize” AI services, thanks to its globally-accessible AI marketplace.
Through the SingularityNET marketplace, users can browse, test and purchase a huge variety of AI services using the platform’s native utility token — AGI. Moreover, the marketplace represents an outlet AI developers can use to publish and sell their AI tools, and easily track their performance.
The team behind SingularityNET pioneered the development of an AI known as Sophia, which is described as the “world’s most expressive robot”. SingularityNET’s goal is to enable Sophia to be able to fully understand human language, and continue developing “OpenCog” — an AI framework that is hoped to eventually achieve a state known as “advanced general intelligence,” i.e. human-level artificial intelligence (or beyond).
The platform was first announced in 2017 and completed an initial coin offering (ICO) in December the same year, raising $36 million in just one minute.
SingularityNET has an extensive team largely of AI scientists, developers, researchers and engineers.
It was founded by Dr. Ben Goertzel (SingularityNET’s CEO and chief scientist) in addition to Simone Giacomelli and Dr. David Hanson.
Dr. Ben Goertzel is an established figure in the AI and robotics industry and has a long distinguished track record of working with advanced technology companies — including Hanson Robotics and the OpenCog Foundation. He also works as Mozi Health’s chief scientist and vice chairman for Humanity+.
Simone Giacomelli is an entrepreneur and investor that previously worked for crypto consultancy Cryptodex. He left the SingularityNET project in March 2019 and is now focused on the technology R&D lab Vulpem, which he founded in 2015.
Dr. David Hanson is SingularityNET’s third co-founder. He has a long and varied history in the robotics industry, working with Disney between 1998 and 2001 before founding several robotics startups — including Human Emulation Robotics, Initiative for Awakening Machines and Hanson Robotics over the last two decades.
SingularityNET is the first platform that makes it easy for developers to sell their AI tools and libraries and enables buyers to test any AI service provided on the marketplace to see if it meets their needs before making payment.
On top of this, those in need of specific AI services can also tap SingularityNET’s extensive community of AI specialists through the Request for AI portal (RFAI) — which allows customers to easily commission a new AI tool, while developers can earn AGI tokens by filling these requests.
The utility of the AGI token has evolved with the development of the SingularityNET ecosystem. In October 2020, SingularityNET launched its SingularityNET Enhancement Proposal (SNEP) feature, enabling AGI holders to vote on changes to the network’s operations. Whereas in March 2020, a staking feature was added, enabling users to stake their tokens
In a collaboration with Hanson Robotics, SingularityNET recently released a joint venture known as Awakening Health, which develops products that leverage AI for healthcare purposes. Its first product is Grace, a humanoid assistant for the healthcare industry.
Reserve Rights is a dual-token stablecoin platform that was launched in May 2019 following a successful initial exchange offering (IEO) on the Huobi Prime platform.
Reserve Rights’ dual token setup includes a stablecoin known as the Reserve stablecoin (RSV) — which is backed by a basket of assets managed by smart contracts. The second token is the Reserve Rights token (RSR), which is used to keep the RSV stable at its $1.00 price target through a system of arbitrage opportunities.
Unlike RSV, the Reserve Rights (RSR) token is volatile, and its main purpose is to help maintain the stability of RSV. It can also be used to vote on governance proposals — helping holders shape the future of the Reserve Rights ecosystem.
In the later stages of the project, Reserve Rights plans to back the Reserve stablecoin by an increasingly diverse basket of assets, and eventually move it away from the U.S. dollar peg — instead creating an alternative reserve asset where RSV tokens instead represent fractional ownership of the collateral pool.
Reserve Rights was co-founded by Nevin Freeman and Matt Elder. Freeman is Reserve’s CEO and a seasoned entrepreneur. He describes his life goal as “solving the coordination problems that are stopping humanity from achieving its potential.”
Matt Elder, on the other hand, is an experienced engineer who previously worked for Google and Quixey, and now works to oversee the architecture of the Reserve protocol implementation as the project’s CTO.
Since its launch in 2019, the Reserve team has grown considerably, and now includes more than two dozen individuals, which includes engineers, developers, and legal and compliance staff — all unified under the shared ambition to position Reserve as an open, massively scalable stablecoin that promotes economic prosperity.
Unlike other stablecoins that are typically backed by U.S. dollars (USD) held in reserve in a bank account controlled by the stablecoin issuer or a trusted custodian, Reserve stablecoins are backed by a basket of cryptocurrencies managed by smart contracts.
This basket initially consists of Ethereum stablecoin assets, including USD Coin (USDC), True USD (TUSD) and Paxos (PAX), but there are plans to later transition to a more diverse basket, which might eventually include fiat currencies, securities, commodities and complex asset types, like synthetics and derivatives.
Arguably Reserve’s major defining feature is its Reserve Rights token, which is minted and sold when the RSV stablecoin loses its peg with the U.S. dollar. The funds generated by selling RSR tokens are used to replenish the RSV collateral pool, whereas when RSV is valued at above $1, the additional collateral will be used to purchase and burn RSR from the secondary market, driving down the supply.
Arbitrageurs can benefit from this mechanism when RSV is valued at above $1.00, by buying RSV at $1.00 from the Reserve smart contract using RSR, and then selling it at the current market price to net the difference as profit. This option is only available to RSR holders, and is currently one of the main drivers for holding RSR tokens.
Starting as an open-source project in 2017, IoTeX has built a decentralized platform whose aim is to empower the open economics for machines — an open ecosystem where people and machines can interact with guaranteed trust, free will, and under properly designed economic incentives.
With a global team of over 40 research scientists and engineers, IoTeX has built their EVM-compatible blockchain from scratch using the innovative Roll-DPoS consensus and launched in 2019 April, which has been running by 100+ delegates worldwide and has processed more than 10 million transactions already. On top of the IoTeX blockchain, the team has built the essential blocks of infrastructures to connect with Ethereum, BSC, and Heco blockchains such as ioPay wallet (https://iopay-wallet.iotex.io/) and ioTube bridge (https://tube.iotex.io/), which serve ten thousands of users. IoTeX helps EVM-based DApps scale without concerning expensive gas fees!
Besides, middleware such as Decentralized Identity, Confidential Computing, and Secure Hardware has been built on top of IoTeX blockchain to enable self-sovereign devices such as Ucam real-world oracle such as Pebble. The former (https://ucam.iotex.io/) has been deployed to 3000+ households (http://iott.network/) and still proliferates. In contrast, the latter has been launched to 300+ developers initially and enables innovative Dapps that connect the physical world with the crypto world, such as real-world NFTs, weather derivatives, and machine learning-as-mining.
The founders of IoTeX are Raullen Chai, Qevan Guo, Xinxin Fan, and Jing Sun.
Besides being the co-founder of IoTeX, Raullen Chai is also an advisor at BootUP Ventures and is a member of the Industrial Distributed Ledger Task Group at Industrial Internet Consortium. He used to work as lead of crypto R&D and engineering security at Uber.
Qevan Guo is also a co-founder of Hyperconnect Lab. He used to be a research scientist and engineering manager at Facebook.
Before co-founding IoTeX, Xinxin Fan was a senior research engineer at Bosch Research and Technology Center, North America. He has also worked as a research associate and project manager at the University of Waterloo.
Jing Sun also works as a managing partner at Sparkland Capital. She is an LP investor at Polychain Capital and an angel investor at Rippling.
IoTeX is the decentralized backbone for machine economics which serves machines ranging from smart home devices to autonomous vehicles. To this end, IoTeX has built and launched a fast, high-performance, and EVM-compatible blockchain that provides flexibility and scalability for various applications. Also, middlewares and Dapps are built on top of the blockchain to bring self-sovereign devices and real-world oracles into reality.
IOTX is the native coin that governs the underlying blockchain protocol while being used as the gas for the blockchain protocol. Burndrop (http://burndrop.iotex.io/) is a unique economical design that leads to deflation of IOTX while the number of devices orchestrated by IoTeX increases.
Billed as the “trust layer of the internet,” Hedera Hashgraph is a public network that allows individuals and businesses to create powerful decentralized applications (DApps).
It is designed to be a fairer, more efficient system that eliminates some of the limitations that older blockchain-based platforms face — such as slow performance and instability.
It was funded through an initial coin offering (ICO) in August 2018 and first launched open access to its mainnet just over a year later in September 2019. As part of the ICO, investors were able to purchase the platform’s native utility token (HBAR) at the lowest possible pricing.
The HBAR token has a dual role within the Hedera public network.
First and foremost, HBAR the fuel that powers Hedera services, such as smart contracts, file storage and regular transactions. Second, it’s used to help secure the network, since HBAR users can stake their tokens to assist with maintaining the integrity of the platform.
Hedera Hashgraph has two founders: Dr. Leemon Baird and Mance Harmon.
Dr. Leemon Baird is credited as the investor of the hashgraph distributed consensus algorithm and currently works as Hedera’s chief scientist.
Prior to founding Hedera Hashgraph, Baird accumulated more than a decade of experience in various computer science and security roles and previously worked as a senior research scientist at the Academy Center by Cyberspace Research. He also holds the position of co-founder and CTO at Swirlds Inc., a platform for building DApps.
On the other hand, Mance Harmon is Hedera’s CEO and an experienced technology executive and seasoned entrepreneur. Harmon has around two decades of experience holding executive roles at prominent firms — many of which are in the IT security industry. Like Dr. Leemon Baird, Mance Harmon also holds a second position at Swirlds Inc., as its co-founder and CEO.
In addition to the founders, the Hedera leadership team also comprises more than a dozen individuals, many of which have had distinguished careers.
Unlike most other cryptocurrency platforms, Hedera Hashgraph isn’t built on top of a conventional blockchain. Instead, it introduces a completely novel type of distributed ledger technology known as a Hashgraph.
This technology allows it to improve upon many blockchain-based alternatives in several key areas, including speed, cost, and scalability. Hedera transactions have an average transaction fee of just $0.0001 USD and typically reach finality in under five seconds. Overall, Hedera Hashgraph claims it can handle more than 10,000 transactions per second (TPS) — compared to the around 5-20 for most popular proof-of-work (PoW)-based blockchains.
The platform offers several major network services. These include:
Ankr originates as a solution that utilizes shared resources in order to provide easy and affordable blockchain node hosting solutions. It was founded in November in 2017 and during its time on the market, it has built a marketplace for container-based cloud services through the usage of shared resources.
This in turn provides developers and enterprise clients with the ability to easily deploy blockchain nodes at a much cheaper price when compared to public cloud providers.
As such, hosting blockchain nodes on Ankr take away any centralization issues and single point of failure.
Furthermore, public blockchains are able to engage in communities and provide further assistance to their networks. Ankr aims to build an infrastructure platform and marketplace for Web3-stack deployment to enable resource providers as well as end-users to connect to blockchain technologies and DeFi applications.
Note that the Ankr proprietary cloud infrastructure operates independently when we compare it to public cloud providers, and that it is completely powered through geographically distributed datacenters to increase its stability and resilience levels.
The Ankr Network was founded in 2017 at Berkeley University in California as a distributed computing platform that takes advantage of blockchain technologies.Co-founder Chandler Song worked as an engineer at Amazon Web Services and serves as CEO, while the other co-founder Ryan Fang worked as an investment banker at Morgan Stanley.
Chandler Song introduced Ryan Fang to Bitcoin and blockchain during their freshman year back in 2014, where he talked him into buying 22 Bitcoin together. In 2017, those bitcoins became the seed that funded the Ankr project.
Together, they acknowledged the potential of the cloud computing market as an infrastructure that could drive global innovation. This led them on a mission to build a cheaper, decentralized cloud.
The Ankr network is created to provide a new blockchain solution that leverages idle computing power from devices and data centers as a whole.
It is a platform that enables the sharing economy, where any customer can access resources at a more affordable rate, while also providing enterprises with the ability to monetize on their spare computing power that is not being utilized. It is unique in the way that it is the first one to use trusted hardware, and as such this ensures a high level of security.
Streamr is a distributed open-source project, crowdfunded in 2017. The project’s goal is to build the decentralized infrastructure for real-time data, replacing centralized message brokers with a global peer-to-peer network. By relying on cryptography instead of trust, the open-source network aims to enable data sharing and monetization in IoT and smart cities, business consortia, individual crowd selling through Data Unions and the decentralized web (Web 3.0).
The Streamr tech stack includes a pub/sub messaging network, data marketplace to trade and crowdsell real-time data, and a real-time data toolkit.
Status is categorized as a mobile and desktop operating system and decentralized browser that incorporates a messaging system. As such, Status allows you to interact with a network at any time, from anywhere. It was originally released in June in 2017.
It is a light client Ethereum node, and has the ability to give you access to all Ethereum decentralized applications (otherwise known as DApps) from an app that is installed on your mobile phone or tablet. This means that users can send encrypted messages as well as access decentralized applications, including a cryptocurrency wallet.
The Status network as a whole was founded by Carl Bennetts and Jarrad Hope. Both of them ran a software distribution company prior.
They had a previous work relationship of over six years on various projects, and three of those years were committed to operating a software distribution network, which drove over 20 million installs throughout many software offerings. All of the profits were used to fund their future projects. During this time they were in a unique position to see how personal data on the internet is bought and sold, and how users are acquired and retained as a result..
Status, or SNT, is an open-source messaging platform as well as a mobile interface. This interface allows its users to interact with DApps running on the ETH blockchain. In return, users get over 2,000 DApps, can send and receive encrypted messages on a peer-to-peer basis and can make payments as well as utilize smart contracts.
The network itself uses Status Network Tokens, or SNT, that are the native currency on the platform. The goal of Status is to make the adoption of Ethereum DApps quicker and more efficient.
There is also a users-as-stakeholders network that allows the behavior of the network and its software to become aligned with the interests of a specific user. The contributors conduct research on a crypto economic model, and peer-to-peer technologies can ensure a healthy Status Network.
Origin Protocol is a network that allows market participants to share goods and services through peer-to-peer (P2P) networks. The platform aims to create an extensive online marketplace leveraging the Ethereum (ETH) blockchain and Interplanetary File System (IPFS) in order to eliminate the need for middlemen.
The protocol allows for the creation of a decentralized setting where both buyers and sellers can connect, check for available listings, write reviews and perform many other actions. With this, fractional usage of assets can be traded more easily.
Origin Protocol addresses the fundamental issues of extant online markets, such as unfair transaction fees, lack of transparency, less drive for innovation and centralization issues. The protocol creates a decentralized and incentivized environment for buyers and sellers to facilitate business.
The team consists of members from more than seven countries who have a mutual interest in blockchain technology. Origin Protocol is headquartered in San Francisco with several investors in various parts of the world. The protocol was launched in 2017 by Josh Fraser and Matthew Liu.
Josh Fraser co-founded Origin Protocol and three other companies before it. He is a serial entrepreneur who has been active in the crypto space for more than a decade. Fraser has also worked as the CTO of the social networking platform Eventvue.
The other co-founder Matthew Liu is a software engineer and product manager who has worked in the blockchain industry for many years. Liu has worked as a product manager at YouTube.
Yu Pan, the founding engineer at Origin Protocol, has worked at Google. He was one of the earliest employees at Paypal and also co-founded Kiwi Crate.
Frank Chastagnol, the VP of engineering, has worked at companies like YouTube, Dropbox and others.
Origin Protocol is aiming to disrupt the sharing economy by setting up a decentralized, P2P network between merchants and cutting out traditional intermediaries. The vision of Origin Protocol is to create distributed systems where users can promote their products. The protocol focuses on the free trading of all goods and services at their actual market prices without third-party interference.
Origin aims to create a conducive environment for online market participants by providing:
Lower transaction fees
Origin Protocol removes the need for intermediaries that charge fees for processing transactions. The protocol allows access to the unbiased prices of goods and services.
Improved incentivization system
Origin Protocol is an open-source platform that rewards users for their contributions to the network through an incentivization system. The platform’s users, such as affiliates, are also rewarded with cryptocurrency tokens when they promote and market the listings created by sellers. This incentivization of users encourages them to keep the platform alive and growing.
Traditional sharing businesses require consumers to have bank accounts, credit cards, or other means of payment, depriving the unbanked of access to their services. On the other hand, Origin Protocol allows underprivileged groups to access open marketplaces without the need for a bank account.
Harmony is a blockchain platform designed to facilitate the creation and use of decentralized applications (DApps). The network aims to innovate the way decentralized applications work by focusing on random state sharding, which allows creating blocks in seconds.
According to the project’s website, Harmony is expected to introduce cross-shard contracts and a cross-chain infrastructure by the end of 2021.
Stephen Tse is the founder and CEO of Harmony. He has a Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania, specializing in cryptographic protocols and type theory.
While finishing his degree, Dr. Tse became a research intern at Microsoft. In 2006 he started working as a senior engineer at Google, spending four years in the company. In 2011 he founded Spotsetter, a successful search engine which Apple later acquired. In 2014, Dr. Tse became the principal engineer for Apple.
He founded Harmony in 2017. The Harmony founding team comprises twelve people, with seven of them being former employees at Google, Apple, Microsoft, and Amazon.
Focusing on processing speed and validation, the Harmony mainnet aims to revolutionize block creation. By introducing the sharding process, the company reduced node validation times significantly.
To ensure the protection of nodes and secure the validation process, Harmony introduced the Verifiable Random Function (VRF) for unbiased and unpredictable shard membership. This means that nodes and validators are assigned and re-assigned in a randomized manner.
The project’s Harmony Grants program is an initiative that aims to support innovation and attract developers to the Harmony mainnet.
Pundi X is a leading developer of blockchain-powered devices with the aim of transforming retail businesses with its blockchain-based point of sale solution. The solution allows retail merchants and consumers to conduct instantaneous in-store transactions on its blockchain.
The blockchain solution was founded in 2017 and launched its ICO in January 2018 as the world’s first point-of-sale solution. Following a successful ICO, Pundi X has successfully launched retailed focused services including XPOS, XWallet and XPASS as well as the world’s first blockchain phone called BOB.
The company, which has its headquarters in Singapore, has shipped its XPOS solution and devices to over 25 markets including the United States, Spain, Argentina, Korea, Australia, Colombia, Spain and Taiwan.
The Pundi X project was founded in 2017 by Zac Cheah and Pitt Huang. The pair met in an HTML5 Interest Group in 2012, and the single idea that created the startup was a way of making cryptocurrencies a part of the daily lives of everybody.
Zac Cheah currently serves as the CEO of Pundi X. Prior to his role at Pundi X, Zac was formerly the W3C Chair of the HTML5 Interest Group. Zac, a skilled programmer received his MS.c in Computing from the KTH Royal Institute of Technology, abbreviated KTH, Sweden, and M.Sc in cybersecurity from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Norway.
Pitt Huang currently serves as the chief technical officer and chief operating officer of Pundi X. Pitt who began coding at the age of 10. In his high school, he was already building space games.
He is also an avid entrepreneur and investor. At the age of 25, he had founded and sold his first Groupon-like company to Baizhu in 2008. He has started and sold several other businesses, including a 200 person company.
The goal of the Pundi X project is to make cryptocurrency available to everyone. While other similar projects attempt to outperform the banking system, Pundi X looks to simplify transforming retail businesses to make this happen.
Pundi X has created a blockchain payment ecosystem with the XPOS, XPASS and the virtual XWallet. The XPOS is the world’s first blockchain-powered wireless point-of-sale (POS) for cryptocurrencies.
Using the XPOS, retail merchants, as well as consumers, can easily buy, sell and transact using digital assets in physical stores. The product is designed to accept every cryptocurrency. Popular digital assets like Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH) and Pundi X (PUNDIX) are listed within the ecosystem.
The XWallet mobile app is the bridge between the regular digital asset wallets and the Pundi X payment ecosystem. Users can use the XWallet to easily manage their digital assets, make transfers, check balances, and top-up the supported cryptos in the XWallet. The virtual XPASS card is issued to every registered XWallet user.
In June 2019, Pundi X launched the Open Platform to support more blockchains. Since then, DeFi developers and projects have registered and uploaded their ERC20 tokens to the Pundi X ecosystem, increasing its use.
A longstanding public blockchain and cryptocurrency, DigiByte uses five different algorithms to improve security, and originally aimed to improve on the Bitcoin blockchain’s security, capacity and transaction speed.
DigiByte consists of three layers: a smart contract “App Store,” a public ledger and the core protocol featuring nodes communicating to relay transactions.
DigiByte was created by Jared Tate, also known as “DigiMan,” who oversaw its metamorphosis from development to its current setup before announcing that he was temporarily retiring from his position in May 2020.
Tate has since returned, and as of September 2020 once again appears closely involved with DigiByte’s growth.
Tate’s biography states that he was involved with Bitcoin from 2012 onwards, and authored the first book written by a blockchain founder, “Blockchain 2035: The Digital DNA of Internet 3.0.”
DigiByte’s operations depend not only on developers, but also the DigiByte Foundation, a volunteer organization tasked with overseeing preservation of the project. A third group of volunteers, the DigiByte Awareness Team, is responsible for marketing and promotional activities.
DigiByte is a modification of Bitcoin which aims to diversify security, speed and capacity possibilities.
Its first incarnation was as an open source blockchain and associated cryptocurrency, DGB. The network has five separate algorithms which help to maintain security and help prevent ASIC miners from commandeering too much power.
Later, another offering, DigiAssets, appeared, with DGB as its native token. DigiAssets appeals to those developers looking to launch digital assets, decentralized applications (DApps) and encode the necessary corresponding smart contracts.
All governance structures for DigiByte are run on a voluntary basis, in line with the thesis that the network should be open source and publicly accessible. Transaction fees in DGB are paid to miners for validating the blockchain.
BitShares is a decentralized platform designed to provide a more efficient global payment network and is commonly used for securely trading cryptocurrencies without any intermediaries.
It was originally launched in July 2014 under the name ProtoShares (PTS) but was rebranded to BitShares (BTS) less than a year later.
The platform is powered by the BitShares (BTS) token, a native utility token that can be used for several purposes, including the creation of smartcoins known as “BitAssets,” which can have a variety of parameters and can represent practically anything — such as reward points, collateralized fiat-pegged tokens and IOUs.
The BitShares platform is managed by a decentralized autonomous company (DAC), which allows BTS token holders to decide the future of the platform, and decide which features to add next.
It runs on an open-source blockchain implementation known as Graphene, which is reportedly capable of processing up to 100,000 transactions per second (TPS) — making it faster than both MasterCard and VISA combined.
As of January 2021, BitShares is in the process of a relaunch, and will be going through several major changes throughout going forward.
BitShares was co-founded in 2013 by some of the cryptocurrency industry’s biggest names, these include:
\ Daniel Larimer, an accomplished software engineer and the co-founder of several other prominent blockchain ventures including EOS.IO, Block.one and Steemit. Larimer is an esteemed name in the cryptocurrency space and is widely regarded as one of its leading innovators.
Charles Hoskinson, an entrepreneur and mathematician who is one of the original eight co-founders of Ethereum — the second most successful blockchain platform (behind Bitcoin). Today, Hoskinson works as the CEO of Input Output HK (IOHK), the research and development company behind Cardano (ADA).
As of January 2021, the BitShares core team consists of 17 permanent workers, supported by more than 60 long-term contributors — covering a range of disciplines including economics and legal, to systems admins and highly skilled developers.
One of BitShares’ major distinguishing features is its integrated decentralized cryptocurrency exchange platform (DEX), which allows users to trade regular cryptocurrencies, as well as more traditional financial instruments (via BitAssets) without middlemen.
As we previously touched on, BitShares uses distributed autonomous companies (DACs) to produce a self-governing, self-financing system that allows BTS holders to set the business rules that govern the BitShares ecosystem through a secure proposal and voting procedure.
BitShares is also one of the few blockchain platforms to completely do away with addresses. Instead, it uses simple memos to distinguish users, making it one of the more accessible crypto platforms. It is also built around a popular referral program that is used to incentivize the growth of the network by distributing upgrade fees between referrers and the BitShares network.
It was the first blockchain to use self-governed delegated proof-of-stake (DPoS) technology and has an ~3-second processing time for transactions, making it one of the fastest blockchains currently operating.
SushiSwap (SUSHI) is an example of an automated market maker (AMM). An increasingly popular tool among cryptocurrency users, AMMs are decentralized exchanges which use smart contracts to create markets for any given pair of tokens.
SushiSwap aims to diversify the AMM market and also add additional features not previously present on Uniswap, such as increased rewards for network participants via its in-house token, SUSHI.
SushiSwap was founded by the pseudonymous entity known only as Chef Nomi. Little is known about Chef Nomi, or his or her impetus for forking off from Uniswap.
The project has two other pseudonymous co-founders, sushiswap and 0xMaki, also known as just Maki. Between them, they handle SushiSwap’s code, product development and business operations.
More recently, de facto ownership of SushiSwap was passed to Sam Bankman-Fried, CEO of derivatives exchange FTX and quantitative trading startup Alameda Research.
Bankman-Fried is a well-known participant and cryptocurrency market commentator, regularly appearing in media interviews.
SushiSwap primarily exists as an AMM, through which automated trading liquidity is set up between any two cryptocurrency assets.
Its main audience is DeFi traders and associated entities looking to capitalize on the boom in project tokens and create liquidity.
AMMs do away with order books entirely while avoiding problems such as liquidity issues, which hamper traditional decentralized exchanges.
SushiSwap aims to improve on the offerings of its parent, Uniswap, by increasing the impact users can have on its operations and future.
The platform takes a 0.3% cut from transactions occurring in its liquidity pools, while its SUSHI token is used to reward users portions of those fees. SUSHI also entitles users to governance rights.
Bitcoin Gold was founded in 2017 to become a user-friendly alternative to Bitcoin. The BTG network aims to combine the security and sturdiness of the Bitcoin blockchain and its characteristics with the opportunity for experimentation and development.
BTG enhances and extends the crypto space with a blockchain closely compatible with Bitcoin but without using resources like Bitcoin hash power or vying for the “real Bitcoin” title. The company aims to present a coin with the implementation capabilities of Bitcoin, however, expanding on the opportunities for DeFi and DApp developers to use the coin.
Bitcoin Gold was founded by a group of enthusiasts with diverse backgrounds and skills. Hang Yin is a co-founder and lead developer at Bitcoin Gold. He graduated with a degree in computer science from Fudan University in 2015. His professional career started right after he graduated. In late 2015, Yin became a software engineer for Google. After three years with the tech giant, Hang Yin decided to venture into entrepreneurship by starting Bitcoin Gold. In 2018, he also participated in the founding of HashForests.
Martin Kuvandzhiev is the second co-founder of Bitcoin Gold, and he is also a board member at the company. He graduated with a degree in computer software engineering from the Technical University of Sofia, and his professional path started as a food service worker at McDonald’s. In 2015, he became an assistant professor at the Technical University of Sofia, and in 2016, he started a job as a lead iOS developer at phyre JSC. Since co-founding Bitcoin Gold in 2017, he has also launched another company called GoStartups.net. Currently, Kuvandzhiev is also the CEO of Assetify.
Bitcoin Gold is a unique combination of the inherent properties of the original Bitcoin blockchain and an innovative approach to blockchain development and applications. As a hard fork of the original Bitcoin token, BTG aims to revolutionize the mining process by introducing a new proof-of-work algorithm that combats the scalability issues Bitcoin struggles with.
As an open-source protocol, Bitcoin Gold allows developers to participate in the governance and development of the blockchain freely. According to the company, this is a must-have requirement for pushing decentralization and one of the major points where Bitcoin struggles.
Bitcoin Gold is one of the first hard forks of the original cryptocurrency, which has attracted institutional and enterprise investors’ attention. BTG is available on a wide variety of exchanges, as well as swap services and wallets. Lastly, Bitcoin Gold has been actively adopted by several online browsers and service providers.
Source for the information upon my positions: http://www.coinmarketcap.com