January 12

Great overview of the current Eth2 development status & rollout – Highly recommended read.

“A successful launch will validate Ethereum 2’s ability to provide a trustless and high-transaction base for the future of decentralized finance, computation, and trust.

The design work is approaching completion: in the main, there will be no further rewrites for additional features, with any future changes relating to issues found during large-scale testing. The BLS encryption scheme, which is the basis for Ethereum’s keys, has reached a suitable level of standardization to be considered final, and this was the last outstanding piece upon which the design relies. [see v0.1 spec release below]

Given the testing time required above and beyond the initial implementation, along with the requirement to fix bugs as they appear, expect to see the beacon chain start to produce blocks somewhere in the second or third quarter of the year.

The design of phase 2 is far less complex than that of phases 0 and 1: it simply defines the idea of an execution environment. However, phase 2 by itself does not define any particular execution environment and so, in conjunction with phase 2 being released, there are expected to be a number of execution environments built by the Ethereum teams as well as third parties. These fall into two categories: general-purpose execution environments and function-specific.”

See Also: What’s New in Eth2 – 10 January
See Also: Spec v0.1 Release (finalized beacon chain spec)

Friday marks the deadline for the European Union’s 28 member nation-states to adopt the Fifth Anti-Money Laundering Directive or AMLD5.  The new rules require crypto exchanges and custodial service providers to register with their local regulator and demonstrate compliance with thorough know-your-customer (KYC) and anti-money laundering AML procedures. 

These regulations represent a double-edged sword for the industry. On the one hand, the added costs of compliance may burden smaller firms in the field. Already, Deribit, a Netherlands-based crypto derivatives exchange, is planning to relocate to Panama.

On the plus side, the long-term effect should be greater trust in crypto from financial institutions in Europe.”

Recommended read.

“In the current implementation, we only attempt to solve the on-chain part of privacy. There is also network-level privacy that needs to be handled by users.

For example, your ISP could log timestamps of packets sent to Relayer and correlate them with withdrawal transaction timestamps. Use a VPN or Tor to hide your IP, especially during a withdrawal.

“The team identified several of its achievements, including creating Plasma Cashflow implementations, releasing a generalized Plasma specification and coining Optimistic Rollup. 

These served primarily to make Plasma sidechains into fully-fledged blockchains supporting smart contracts, as opposed to just limited money transfer capabilities.

After one year of operation, Plasma Group reached the conclusion that research efforts into Plasma scalability are unneeded, as the theoretical base is mature.

It is amazing to see the multitude of competent teams pushing production plasma into reality now. This shift from research to implementation means that our mission as a research organization must shift as well.

Identifying funding of public goods as the next key challenge, it pledged to donate its remaining funds to Gitcoin.”

See Also: On To New Beginnings

“The bank said the ‘processes of top-level design, setting industry standards, developing potential functions and integration testing,’ were ‘almost complete.’

The bank said it has been working on the expected two-tiered system that would offer “controllable” anonymity and the functionality to replace paper cash.  The bank statement did not say when the work on the digital yuan was expected to be completed.

Spencer Dinwiddie of the NBA’s Brooklyn Nets will launch his tokenized security offering on Jan. 13, in collaboration with digital securities company Securitize, after reportedly settling terms with the NBA.

At @securitize we are extremely excited and proud to be the digital transfer agent and technology partner for @SDinwiddie_25 and @DreamFanShares world’s first Professional Athlete Investment Security Token.

Dinwiddie is going to sell his securities-backed SD8 tokens, which can’t be traded for a year, for $150,000 apiece to verified accredited investors under SEC Regulation D.”

“A lot has changed since we last checked in on the DemNom market. Elizabeth Warren completed her plunge from pole sentiment position in the Fall to well behind the two current frontrunners, Sanders and Biden. Buttigieg, likewise, saw a reversal in the momentum he was establishing.”

“The United States’ largest bank believes interest will be high in CME Group’s new Bitcoin (BTC) options when they launch on Jan. 13. 

This unusually strong activity over the past few days likely reflects the high anticipation among market participants of the option contract.