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cryptocurrency Russia

Russia’s Sberbank plans cryptocurrency exchange in Switzerland

PUBLISHED 03:43 FEBRUARY 6, 2018

Moscow appears to have moved quickly into the market of cryptocurrencies and cryptography. Gref earlier warned that companies including Blockchain and Bitcoin should not be banned or hindered in their operations.

Russia’s Finance Ministry legalised cryptocurrency trading on January 25 with the Digital Assets Regulation Bill, despite vocal objections from the country’s Central Bank. The bill defined cryptocurrencies and tokens as digital financial assets that are not legal tender in Russia. The Central Bank, however, argued that digital currency trading rules should only be applied to tokens that would attract financial investments.

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https://news.bitcoin.com/sberbank-bypass-russian-regulations-trade-cryptocurencies-overseas/

https://www.reuters.com/article/russia-sberbank-cryptocurrencies/sberbank-plans-to-trade-cryptocurrencies-outside-russia-idUSL8N1PP5SL

https://www.crypto-economy.net/ceo-of-sberbank-disagree-with-a-cryptocurrency-ban

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Bitcoin price falls below $6,000 as banker signals crackdown

BIS head says cryptocurrency is a ‘Ponzi scheme’ that poses a threat to financial stability
https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2018/feb/06/bitcoin-price-crackdown-bis-cryptocurrency

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more on cryptocurrency in this IMS blog
http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims?s=cryptocurrency

Blockchain, Money and Empathy

On Blockchain, Money and Empathy: EdSurge Talks Trends and 2018 Predictions

By Jeffrey R. Young     Jan 30, 2018

EdSurge’s CEO, Betsy Corcoran, argued that 2017 was a year when educators and schools were trying to take control of their technology choices “We have said from the time we started writing the newsletters that not every piece of technology will work for every student, or for every school or every classroom,” she said. “It’s all about asking the right questions to figure out if there is a piece of technology that will support learning goals. What we’re starting to really see across schools, districts and teachers, people really owning those questions. They’re saying, ‘What do I want to do with my classroom? With my kids? And what are the technologies that will support me?’”

Another discussion participant asked whether colleges and universities are starting to accept cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, or experimenting with the blockchain technology that drives those systems. Johnson said most of the hype around unversities’ blockchain experiments has centered on storing and managing credentials.

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more on blockchain and education in this IMS blog
http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims?s=blockchain+education

blockchain

35 Amazing Real World Examples Of How Blockchain Is Changing Our World

https://www.forbes.com/sites/bernardmarr/2018/01/22/35-amazing-real-world-examples-of-how-blockchain-is-changing-our-world

My note: nothing about education by this author. Here it is from our IMS blog
http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims/2018/01/12/blockchain-for-libraries/

http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims/2017/09/27/blockchain-credentialing-in-higher-ed/

http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims/2016/10/03/blockchain-credentialing/

Cybersecurity

Guardtime – This company is creating “keyless” signature systems using blockchain which is currently used to secure the health records of one million Estonian citizens.

REMME is a decentralized authentication system which aims to replace logins and passwords with SSL certificates stored on a blockchain.

Healthcare

Gem – This startup is working with the Centre for Disease Control to put disease outbreak data onto a blockchain which it says will increase the effectiveness of disaster relief and response.

SimplyVital Health – Has two health-related blockchain products in development, ConnectingCare which tracks the progress of patients after they leave the hospital, and Health Nexus, which aims to provide decentralized blockchain patient records.

MedRec – An MIT project involving blockchain electronic medical records designed to manage authentication, confidentiality and data sharing.

Financial services

ABRA – A cryptocurrency wallet which uses the Bitcoin blockchain to hold and track balances stored in different currencies.

Bank Hapoalim – A collaboration between the Israeli bank and Microsoft to create a blockchain system for managing bank guarantees.

Barclays – Barclays has launched a number of blockchain initiatives involving tracking financial transactions, compliance and combating fraud. It states that “Our belief …is that blockchain is a fundamental part of the new operating system for the planet.”

Maersk – The shipping and transport consortium has unveiled plans for a blockchain solution for streamlining marine insurance.

Aeternity – Allows the creation of smart contracts which become active when network consensus agrees that conditions have been met – allowing for automated payments to be made when parties agree that conditions have been met, for example.

Augur – Allows the creation of blockchain-based predictions markets for the trading of derivatives and other financial instruments in a decentralized ecosystem.

Manufacturing and industrial

Provenance – This project aims to provide a blockchain-based provenance record of transparency within supply chains.

Jiocoin – India’s biggest conglomerate, Reliance Industries, has said that it is developing a blockchain-based supply chain logistics platform along with its own cryptocurrency, Jiocoin.

Hijro – Previously known as Fluent, aims to create a blockchain framework for collaborating on prototyping and proof-of-concept.

SKUChain – Another blockchain system for allowing tracking and tracing of goods as they pass through a supply chain.

Blockverify –  A blockchain platform which focuses on anti-counterfeit measures, with initial use cases in the diamond, pharmaceuticals and luxury goods markets.

Transactivgrid – A business-led community project based in Brooklyn allowing members to locally produce and cell energy, with the goal of reducing costs involved in energy distribution.

STORJ.io – Distributed and encrypted cloud storage, which allows users to share unused hard drive space.

Government

DubaiDubai has set sights on becoming the world’s first blockchain-powered state. In 2016 representatives of 30 government departments formed a committee dedicated to investigating opportunities across health records, shipping, business registration and preventing the spread of conflict diamonds.

Estonia – The Estonian government has partnered with Ericsson on an initiative involving creating a new data center to move public records onto the blockchain. 20

South Korea – Samsung is creating blockchain solutions for the South Korean government which will be put to use in public safety and transport applications.

Govcoin – The UK Department of Work and Pensions is investigating using blockchain technology to record and administer benefit payments.

Democracy.earth – This is an open-source project aiming to enable the creation of democratically structured organizations, and potentially even states or nations, using blockchain tools.

Followmyvote.com – Allows the creation of secure, transparent voting systems, reducing opportunities for voter fraud and increasing turnout through improved accessibility to democracy.

Charity

Bitgive – This service aims to provide greater transparency to charity donations and clearer links between giving and project outcomes. It is working with established charities including Save The Children, The Water Project and Medic Mobile.

Retail

OpenBazaar – OpenBazaar is an attempt to build a decentralized market where goods and services can be traded with no middle-man.

Loyyal – This is a blockchain-based universal loyalty framework, which aims to allow consumers to combine and trade loyalty rewards in new ways, and retailers to offer more sophisticated loyalty packages.

Blockpoint.io – Allows retailers to build payment systems around blockchain currencies such as Bitcoin, as well as blockchain derived gift cards and loyalty schemes.

Real Estate

Ubiquity – This startup is creating a blockchain-driven system for tracking the complicated legal process which creates friction and expense in real estate transfer.

Transport and Tourism

IBM Blockchain Solutions – IBM has said it will go public with a number of non-finance related blockchain initiatives with global partners in 2018. This video envisages how efficiencies could be driven in the vehicle leasing industry.

Arcade City – An application which aims to beat Uber at their own game by moving ride sharing and car hiring onto the blockchain.

La’Zooz – A community-owned platform for synchronizing empty seats with passengers in need of a lift in real-time.

Webjet – The online travel portal is developing a blockchain solution to allow stock of empty hotel rooms to be efficiently tracked and traded, with payment fairly routed to the network of middle-men sites involved in filling last-minute vacancies.

Media

Kodak – Kodak recently sent its stock soaring after announcing that it is developing a blockchain system for tracking intellectual property rights and payments to photographers.

Ujomusic – Founded by singer-songwriter Imogen Heap to record and track royalties for musicians, as well as allowing them to create a record of ownership of their work.

It is exciting to see all these developments. I am sure not all of these will make it into successful long-term ventures but if they indicate one thing, then it is the vast potential the blockchain technology is offering.

Bernard Marr is a best-selling author & keynote speaker on business, technology and big data. His new book is Data Strategy. To read his future posts simply join his network here.

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more on blockchain in this IMS blog
http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims?s=blockchain

why cryptocurrencies are unstable

5 key reasons bitcoin, other cryptocurrencies have lost a stunning $370 billion in 10 days

Published: Jan 17, 2018 3:58 p.m. ET

https://www.marketwatch.com/story/5-key-reasons-bitcoin-other-cryptocurrencies-have-lost-a-stunning-365-billion-in-10-days-2018-01-17

market cap

Here’s a quick rundown of the factors contributing to the carnage:

1). South Korea

Seoul has said that the government intends to crack down on the trading of cryptoassets. Officials have also floated the idea of taxes on crypto trading and other measures to tighten its grip on market considered by some as supporting money laundering and dangerous speculative investing. By some measures, South Korea represents about a fifth of the virtual-trade volume.

2). Russia

Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday that more oversight of cryptocurrencies may be needed “This is the prerogative of the Central Bank at present and the Central Bank has sufficient authority so far. However, in broad terms, legislative regulation will be definitely required in future,” he said, according to Russian news agency TASS.

3). China

Beijing, which already has taken a hard line against the bitcoin community, which uses computing power to support the network and create new bitcoin through mining, has said it also is exploring further regulations or restrictions around digital-asset trading.

4). Bitconnect $BCC

The cyber currency known as Bitconnect, which has long drawn a critical eye from cryptocurrency investors because of its use of loans and the manner in which it solicits new investors, shut down. Bitconnect also promised a return of a quarter of a percentage point daily.

5). Bitcoin futures

Futures for bitcoin on exchange platforms are set to expire this month.

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more on cryptocurrencies in this IMS blog
http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims?s=cryptocurrency

cryptocurrencies

Cryptocurrencies: Litecoin price skyrockets, Ethereum follows after Bitcoin futures premiere

https://www.neweurope.eu/article/cryptocurrencies-litecoin-price-skyrockets-ethereum-follows-bitcoin-futures-premiere

10 most important cryptocurrencies’ prices and trends during 12 December 2017.

10 most important cryptocurrencies

A fork itself of the original Bitcoin, Litecoin uses the same process to create the coins, and it uses blockchain to decentralize the banking. However, Litecoin still is four times faster, generating “blocks” faster, every 2.5 minutes instead of every 10 that applies to Bitcoin, making it faster and cheaper.

Ethereum, on the other hand, is more of a decentralized app platform than a cryptocurrency, could be boosted by a recent statement by U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission chief Jay Clayton, laying down a sober and knowledgeable overview of initial coin offerings (ICOs). “The technology on which cryptocurrencies and ICOs are based may prove to be disruptive, transformative and efficiency-enhancing,” said Clayton. “I am confident that developments in Fintech will help facilitate capital formation and provide promising investment opportunities for institutional and Main Street investors alike,”

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more on bitcoin in this IMS blog
http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims?s=bitcoin

blockchain credentialing in higher ed

2 reasons why blockchain tech has big, tangible implications for higher ed

By Jami Morshed September 27th, 2017

What Is Blockchain?

blockchain is a database or digital ledger. The data in the ledger is arranged in batches known as blocks, with each block storing data about a specific transaction. The blocks are linked together using cryptographic validation to form an unbroken and unbreakable chain–hence the name blockchain. As it relates to bitcoin, the blocks are monetary units, and the chain includes information about all past transactions of that monetary unit.

Importantly, the database (i.e., the series of blocks) is duplicated thousands of times across a network of computers, meaning that it has no one central repository. This not only means that the records are truly public, but also that there is no centralized version of the data for a hacker to corrupt. In order to make changes to the ledger, consensus between all members of the group must be obtained, further adding to the system’s security.

1. Blockchain for the Future of Credentialing

With today’s technologies, graduates and prospective employers must go through a tedious process to obtain student transcripts or diplomas, and this complexity is compounded when these credentials are spread across multiple institutions. Not only that, but these transcripts can take days or weeks to produce and send, and usually require a small fee be paid to the institution.LinkedLinek

This could be a key enabler to facilitate student ownership of this data and would allow them to instantly produce secure and comprehensive credentials to any institute or employer requesting them, including information about a student’s performance on standardized tests, degree requirements, extracurricular activities, and other learning activities.

Blockchain could play a major role in Competency-Based Education (CBE) programs and micro-credentialing, which are becoming ever more popular across universities and internal business training programs.

various companies are currently working on such a system of record. One of the most well-known is called “BlockCert,” which is an open standard created by MIT Media Lab and which the institute hopes will help drive the adoption of blockchain credentialing.

imagine the role that LinkedIn or a similar platform could play in the distribution of such content. Beyond verification of university records, LinkedIn could become a platform for sharing verified work history and resumes as well, making the job application process far simpler

2. Blockchain’s Financial Implications and Student debt

how could blockchain influence student finances? For starters, financial aid and grants could be tied to student success. Instead of students and universities having to send over regular progress reports on a recipient’s performance, automatic updates to a student’s digital record would ensure that benchmarks were being met–and open up new opportunities for institutions looking to offer merit-based grants.

Electronic tuition payments and money transfers could also simplify the tuition process. This is an especially appealing option for international students, as bitcoin’s interchangeable nature and lack of special fees for international transfers makes it a simpler and more cost-effective payment method.

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more on credentialing in this IMS blog
http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims?s=credentialing

more on blockchain credentialing in this IMS blog
http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims/2016/10/03/blockchain-credentialing/

Zcash

Zcash (ZEC), the new digital currency lauded for its privacy features, is launching today amidst some massive hype. But until enough tokens become available on exchanges, Zcash enthusiasts are poised to acquire their ZEC first-hand by mining for it, either by setting up a home rig or by signing up for a cloud mining contract.

https://plus.google.com/+PatrickUlrich/posts/JEKNvhvwUHZ

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more on bitcoin and digital currency in this IMS blog:

http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims?s=bitcoin

blockchain credentialing

AAEEBL (The Association for Authentic, Experiential and Evidence-Based learning) starts the Baston Blog

Blockchain Credentialing: What Impact Will it Have?
Posted By Trent Batson Ph. D.

blockchain credentialing, big news since the MIT Media Lab offered an open source means of credentialing using blockchain technology (the technology behind bitcoin).

Blockchain credentialing makes verification of credentials much simpler and less time consuming, according to the articles I’ve collected below.  Even IBM has entered the arena.

As with badges, we in the eportfolio world need to be aware of the trend toward blockchain credentialing.  I’ve sorted through the links below so I could select those I thought would be most useful for you.

http://www.learningmachine.com/credentials.html

https://www.edsurge.com/news/2016-06-07-mit-media-lab-introduces-blockchain-technology-for-credentials

https://campustechnology.com/articles/2016/05/16/how-blockchain-will-disrupt-the-higher-education-transcript.aspx — the Phil Long interview

https://www.gartner.com/doc/3279217/reinventing-education-credentials-using-blockchain

https://bitcoinmagazine.com/articles/holberton-school-begins-tracking-student-academic-credentials-on-the-bitcoin-blockchain-1463605176

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/blockchain-identity-credentials-enough-eric-korb?articleId=8359553479741654341

http://thenewstack.io/one-school-using-bitcoin-blockchain-authenticate-degrees/

https://console.ng.bluemix.net/docs/services/blockchain/index.html

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more on badges in this blog

http://blog.stcloudstate.edu/ims?s=badges

Tech In 2015 and flops in 2014

What To Look Out For In Tech In 2015

 http://www.businessinsider.com/what-to-look-out-for-in-tech-in-2015-2014-12#ixzz3O0Jpgipy

Venmo, the peer-to-peer payments app, will offer a solution for in-store merchants.

By year-end 2015, more people will have used a smartphone to unlock their doors than will have used a mobile wallet. 

The Amazon Echo will succeed

YouTube will get a ‘social’ make-over

The Top Technology Failures of 2014

http://www.technologyreview.com/news/533546/the-top-technology-failures-of-2014/

Google Glass

(See “Google Glass Is Dead; Long Live Smart Glasses.”)

Brazil’s EEG Exoskeleton

(See “World Cup Mind-Control Demo Faces Deadlines, Critics.”)

Bitcoin

(See “Marginally Useful.”)

STAP Cells

(See coverage by the Los Angeles Times and by Nature.)

Sapphire iPhone Screens

(See “Why Apple Failed to Make Sapphire iPhones.”)

Aereo’s Tiny Antennas

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