Block by Block Weekly Newsletter #4
Tip: The headings are clickable links!
Disclaimer: Nothing in this email should be taken as investment advice. Please click here for more information.
News of the Week
Another surprise announcement from Binance this week. The company has announced plans to open an office in Malta and start a fiat-to-crypto exchange. Maltas Prime Minister, Joseph Muscat, even tweeted out a welcome message to Binance!
This week the Joint Economic Commitee of the Congress released their 2018 Joint Economic Report and it includes an entire chapter on cryptocurrencies! This is a first for the report and the chapter shines an overall positive light on the technology. It's great to see governments taking this technology seriously and foregoing the classic "it's only used for drugs" line that we so commonly see.
First Facebook and Google - now Twitter. The U.S based social networking giant will roll out their policy by the end of the month. Personally, I think this is great for the overall health of the crypto ecosystem as many outright scams used social media to advertise their projects or ICO's to unsuspecting investors.
Members of the G20 have set a July deadline for unified regulation within cryptocurrency. Specifically, the members want recommendations on what data they need to make informed regulation decisions. I think this is great news as crypto will need a concrete regulatory framework before it can be treated as a serious asset class.
Big news from Yahoo this week! The internet giant plans to purchase a 40 percent stake in BitARG for around $19 million USD. Hopefully the new exchange will feature fiat-to-crypto trading pairs.
Okay, the title is a bit sensationalist. What's really happening is that Google's parent company, Alphabet, is planning to build out 'distributed ledger technology' to compliment their cloud offerings. Still, it's a great sign when the crypto space gets recognition from large tech companies.
In an interview on CNBC, Kevin announced that he is involved with a NYC-based SEC-approved ICO-like funding mechanism that aims to raise $400 million for 1/3 of a real estate asset - in this case, a "prestigious brand hotel". The crypto space has been talking about the tokenization of real-world assets, stocks and equities for years now and if Kevin's plan turns out to be a success we may see an onslaught of other assets being tokenized!
Project Updates
The infamous dApp that clogged the Ethereum network for over a week is breaking away from its parent company and going at it alone. The team behind Cryptokitties announced that they have raised $12 million in a funding round led by prestigious Silicon Valley firm a16z!
The 0x Trade Widget allows users to instantly purchase tokens with ETH in a single transaction using the 0x protocol. The best part is that this doesn't require the user to wrap or deposit ETH as it is all handled by a 'forwarding contract' behind the scenes. More details in this post.
CryptoZombies, the popular website that helps developers learn Solidity and Ethereum smart contracts, will be hard-forking the platform onto its own 'DAppChain' within the Loom Network. You can learn more about DAppChains here.
The biggest news for this release is that Parity now supports Wasm Smart Contracts on the Kovan testnet! As Parity puts it, "this technology allows developers to write smart contracts in any programming language that compiles to Wasm, such as Rust and C++". 
Auctus launched an initiative this week with popular projects Aragon, Ethfinex, Ripio Credit Network, Request.Network, 0x project, Melonport, Amadeus and Bluzelle. Super cool to see all these teams developing together! #buidl
Provided above is a link to all the talks from Day 1 and 2 of the Satoshis Vision Conference. For those that don't know - the conference is focused on updates and developments within the Bitcoin Cash ecosystem.
Vitalik Buterin submitted a new post this week that proposes a new way of computing fees within the Etheruem network. 
The Kyber decentralized exchange is now available for everyone to use!
Nick Johnson announced a new website that automatically lists all merged EIP's - super cool!
Want to learn more about Ethereum Sharding? Look no further! This handy compendium provides resources to all the current research and developments within the space. I've also added it to the Block by Block website!
If you're interested in the Ontology Project you can now apply to become an ambassador!
New Projects
Keymesh allows users to send and recieve money and messages to verified Twitter names. I'm a big fan of projects that put emphasis on usability as it's much easier to memorize someones Twitter handle instead of a 42 character string.
Well this seemed inevitable. You can now start collecting, trading and creating 'ethmojis' - emojis that live on the Ethereum blockchain!
Rupie aims to improve the way people create and play video games by building them together. Check out the whitepaper for more information.
A new scaling solution for Ethereum was launched this week that aims to help dApps scale via counterfactual instantiation
Crypto Drama & Controversy
Many mainstream media outlets reported this week that child porn is permanently encoded into the Bitcoin blockchain. Turns out that these stories were 'fake news' but many within the industry chimed in with their own thoughts. Within my own circles we started discussing the very real implications of what constitutes possession of illegal materials if they are scored on a blockchain. Are you breaking the law by running a node in that case? Or mining? Does the community fork the chain every time there's illegal material found? Muddy waters to say the least.
Two research pieces by author 'CoinMarketCapped' claim that the popular price tracking website uses their huge influence to manipulate crypto markets through displaying incorrect data.
According to 'The Student Loan Report', more than 20% of college students used part of their loans to invest in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.
Personal Updates
As usual more research and resources were added to the website with the 'new' tag.
You made it! Thanks for reading. I'd love to get your feedback so please send an email to and I'll be sure to get back to you! :)
Block by Block · City · Melbourne Victoria 3000 · Australia
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