Block by Block Weekly Newsletter #1
Hello everyone! This is the very first edition of the Block by Block Weekly Newsletter. Thank you for subscribing! My aim with this newsletter is to give a breakdown of the biggest news and updates in crypto each week along with some of my own thoughts on each point.
Protip: 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
Bill Gates made some choice comments about crypto this week in an AMA on Reddit and the community was not happy. Bill showed that he fails to understand the underlying potential for blockchain technology and reverted to the age old "it's just used for illegal things" answer. Not cool Bill!
The Securities and Exchange Commission in the U.S are investigating up to 80 companies and individuals involved with initial coin offerings. Rumours are flying that some high profile ICO's (such as Filecoin) are included in that list.
Analysts claim that Bitmain, one of the biggest suppliers of Bitcoin mining hardware, made $3 billion to $4 billion in operating profits in 2017. I'm reminded of the quote: "in a gold rush make sure you're the one selling the shovels".
Popular YouTubers who were involved in promoting the now defunct Ponzi scheme Bitconnect have been given dates to appear in court. If you haven't seen it yet, indulge yourself with this video.
After many months of waiting Coinbase has finally stared rolling out SegWit support for Bitcoin. SegWit was implemented in Bitcoin via a UASF (user activated soft fork) in 2017 with the goal of reducing fees on the Bitcoin network. Though, for SegWit to work, it requires users to opt-in. Estimates say that over 50% of Bitcoin network activity happens at Coinbase so them adopting SegWit should go a long way to reducing the overall Bitcoin network fees (in the short term, at least).
Over 1000 Australian Newsagents have enabled purchases of Bitcoin and Ethereum in-store. Just another step towards mainstream adoption!
Project Updates
OmiseGo released their eWallet Software Development Kit (SDK) this week. This is a huge milestone for one of the best projects in the Ethereum space. They also launched a redesign of their website and provided an Official Guide to the OmiseGo platform!
Cosmos released version 0.10.0 of their SDK this week so that blockchain developers can get started building on their platform. This is a huge milestone in the Cosmos roadmap. The mainnet launch should be just around the corner!
The Aion Project released all their code for the PoW version of the Aion Network and made the testnet available to all! Click here to get started.
Twitch streamers can now earn revenue through the BAT-enabled browser, Brave. This is an obvious but great use-case for the BAT platform and I'm so glad to see them integrating it. Check out the rest of the weekly update from the BAT team here.
Gavin Wood of Parity Tech has released the first specification for how governance will work within the Polkadot Network.
The popular Ethereum wallet Metamask has begun rolling out a complete overhaul of their UI along with additional features - the biggest being native token sending!
The FOAM Protocol's Spatial Index was launched for all beta participants this week. The Spatial Index is a visual blockchain explorer for the FOAM network. Click here to learn more.
The AirSwap team have launched a network of liquidity partners that is due to go live on March 15th. These partners will supply liquidity for twenty four crypto-tokens on the AirSwap platform!
Neon Exchange released details about their Token Sale this week. Whitelisting opens on March 12th. The first lottery will select up to 25k participants to contribute up to $1,000 each.
The Ontology Airdrop snapshot for NEO holders was taken at block height 1974823 and is being supported by Binance, Kucoin and Houbi.
New Projects
Hoard came out of stealth this week to announce they are building a platform for the exchange of gaming assets. The project lists investment partners such as OmiseGo and advisors from the Golem project. I'm definitely keeping my eye on this one!
Doxa is a communal content vetting platform that aims to bring a more democratic process to social media content. They achieve this by allowing the community to select and broadcast content that aligns with their values. Content also get's rewarded on the platform! It's a similar concept to what STEEM uses. You can sign up for the Doxa beta on their website.
Uber Co-Founder Garrett Camp has launched a new cryptocurrency called Eco. The project aims to be a currency for the world and they are giving away free Eco to the first 1 billion people who sign up via their website.
Crypto Drama
Popular project Waltonchain ran a Valentines Day giveaway on their Twitter during February. A user posted a tweet exclaiming that they had won and thanked the Walton team. The problem? The user was the Waltonchain Twitter account! Hilarity ensued as Reddit jumped in and started creating memes - the most notable of which I've posted below.
waltoncha
Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro is claiming that the country has raised $735 million in the first day of a sale for its controversial "petro" cryptocurrency. Many people in the crypto community have called this ICO out as a complete scam. On top of this, anyone contributing to the ICO would be directly supporting Nicolas Maduro who is the defacto dictator of Venezuela.
An anonymous user created a forum post calling out the project 'Crypto All Stars' as a Ponzi scheme. He then announced that he had spent ~$30,000 (about 30 ETH) to shut the project down! 
Personal Updates
This week I became a community moderator over at Token Daily. The website aims to be a place for crypto news, launches and discussions (similar to Reddit). Make sure to head over, create an account and get involved - it's a great resource!
I've added a bunch of new links to the research page of Block by Block. I've also added a 'new' tag that will remain on a link for 2 weeks after its been added!
You made it! I hope you enjoyed the first edition of the Block by Block Newsletter. I'd love to get your feedback so if you have any please send me an email to info@blockbyblock.io and I'll be sure to get back to you! :)
Block by Block · City · Melbourne Victoria 3000 · Australia
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