Radar Releases One-Stop Onramp for Bitcoin’s Lightning Network

Radar’s new Lightning Network onramp may be the easiest way for individuals to get connected to Bitcoin’s second-layer solution. According to a …

Elsa Saikkonen| Mar 02, 2019 | 18:00

Yesterday, Radar — a Denver-based technology startup looking ahead to the new financial paradigm — released a new “onboarding experience” for Bitcoin’s Lightning Network. Called ION, the new project is an interactive guide for learning how the Lightning Network works and for experimenting with the popular second-layer solution to Bitcoin’s scalability issues.

Until now, Radar has been most widely known for Radar Relay, a decentralized application (dApp) on Ethereum.

Radar’s new Lightning Network onramp may be the easiest way for individuals to get connected to Bitcoin’s second-layer solution. According to a press release, ION’s homepage “includes everything a new user needs to join the Lightning Network on a single page, including a testnet mode sandbox for new users to experiment with Lightning payments risk-free and a mainnet mode with comprehensive resources to behind using real Bitcoin for real products and services.”

Additionally, Radar offers ION News to keep users up to date on the latest Lightning Network developments and ION Wiki, a collection of informative resources, tools, and applications for Lightning Network.

Blockchain Capital partner Spencer Bogart noted:

Bitcoin is the most exciting and empowering thing to happen to financial markets in decades and the Lightning Network is taking things to the next level. The biggest challenge, however, is onboarding users and I’m thrilled to see Radar tackling this challenge head-on with ION.

Likewise, Radar ION Product Lead Brandon Curtis stated:

The Lightning Network is rapidly improving, but accessibility for new users and feature discovery and integration for developers are challenging problems that haven’t received much attention. By helping more people to connect and providing them with the tools to build and experiment, we can accelerate adoption and exploration of what the Lightning Network is capable of.

There is certainly a lot to be excited about when it comes to Bitcoin (BTC) and the Lightning Network. New developments that facilitate education and onboarding, such as Radar ION, are always exciting.

What do you think of Radar ION and Bitcoin’s Lightning Network? Do you think the latter will facilitate mainstream adoption for Bitcoin (BTC)? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

Images courtesy of Shutterstock.

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A Bitcoin Satellite Just Transmitted the ‘First Pepe In Space’

Cryptocurrency industry figures were celebrating a tech innovation of a different kind this week after the Bitcoin network transmitted what many are …
bitcoin satelliteBitcoin Technology

Esther Kim

Esther Kim| Mar 01, 2019 | 04:00

Cryptocurrency industry figures were celebrating a tech innovation of a different kind this week after the Bitcoin network transmitted what many are calling the first space meme.

A Meme To ‘Go Down In History’

The latest first to come from Bitcoin development company Blockstream’s Satellite network, an unknown source sent the developer known as grubles an encrypted Pepe meme via the Lightning Network-powered setup.

Pepe, which has endured online and even offline as a popular – albeit not always positive – meme, appeared for grubles in the guise of Bitcoin Car Talk podcast presenter Mikeinspace.

The latter’s Twitter account is now known as ‘1st Pepe In Space.’

“This would be the first Pepe to be transmitted exclusively via satellite, and so it’s fitting that the card relates to (Mikeinspace),” an accompanying transaction message reads.

So, I just received an encrypted Rare Pepe from space via the ⚡️-powered #SatelliteAPI 🛰️. #BlocksreamSatellite#SpacePepes 😂 pic.twitter.com/yC5Ns6j0Qz

— grubles (@notgrubles) February 27, 2019

The gesture gained immediate fame, with open source library and information resource Messari revealing Pepe was its most popular summary for February 28.

“Pretty sure this is going to be in the history textbooks for kids to study in Meme class,” Blockstream CEO Samson Mow added on Twitter.

Blockstream Tweaks Internetless Bitcoin Transactions

As Bitcoinistreported, Blockstream Satellite broadcast its first message from outer space in January, in the form of a piece of text from an unnamed developer sent to grubles.

The implementation currently covers around 70 percent of the Earth’s surface, Blockstream aiming to expand it in order for anyone on the planet to send a Bitcoin transaction without internet access.

“Fees are paid using Lightning testnet (yes, that means free broadcasts!) and after a period of successful testing, the satellite API will switch to mainnet to become one of the world’s first bitcoin-powered satellite services,” the company confirmed revealing its user-oriented beta version in January.

Blockstream already offers various options for Bitcoin users interested in participating in the satellite network. Its official website tracks sent and queued satellite broadcasts, which are publicly visible.

What do you think about the Blockstream Pepe transmission? Let us know in the comments below!

Images courtesy of Shutterstock

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Apple Co-Founder Insists There’s Massive Value Creation’ for Bitcoin (BTC)

Including, Y Combinator Continuity, Polychain, Wellington Management, and Andreessen Horowitz to name a few. GIC wasn’t among the investors …

Steve Wozniak, the co-founder of Apple, has declared that there’s massive value creation” for Bitcoin (BTC). He made these remarks about BTC’s potential during an interview with Bloomberg on February 26.

When Bloomberg asked Wozniak what he thinks about Bitcoin’s potential to replace fiat and become the world’s currency in the future, after “the massive value destruction in BTC,” the entrepreneur had this to say:

I’m unsure regarding buying the idea that we have seen massive value destruction in Bitcoin, I think we have seen massive value creation instead.”

Bitcoin (BTC) Price Today – BTC / USD

Name Price 24H (%)



Wozniak: Psychology Drives Market Dips

The Apple co-founder also has argued that it isn’t unusual for psychology to drive market dips, especially the fear of determining the price. Wozniak went on to clear the air that he wasn’t interested in Bitcoin (BTC) “as an investor.” He insisted that he “only had BTC to experiment with.” Wozniak said he had used the leading digital currency as a payment format.

Wozniak also remarked that he sold all his Bitcoin (BTC) “when the price went high.” The engineer then added that he hadn’t invested in any stocks before or made use of the Apple stock app.

In October of 2018, Wozniak has been revealed as a co-founder of EQUI Global. EQUI Global is a blockchain-focused venture capital fund.

Singapore’s GIC Among Those That Raised $300 Million for Coinbase Last Year

Singapore backed GIC (Government Investment Corporation) was one of the investors that helped to raise $300 million for United States major crypto exchange Coinbase last. Bloomberg reported the news citing anonymous sources who have knowledge of the matter on February 28.

According to GIC’s official website, the company has assets in 40 countries across the globe amounting to $100 billion.

With the round led by Tiger Global Management, Coinbase disclosed a host of backers known for their huge investments in crypto. Including, Y Combinator Continuity, Polychain, Wellington Management, and Andreessen Horowitz to name a few. GIC wasn’t among the investors named.

As of press time, neither GIC nor Coinbase has agreed to any requests for comment on the issue.

Bloomberg cites documents seen by the news outlet in 2018. The documents are alleged to have shown that Coinbase’s forecasted its 2018 revenue at $1.3 billion. This figure was mostly derived from trading commissions and crypto asset holdings.

In the summer of last year, analysts predicted that the revenue generated by exchanges would double to hit $4 billion. Coinbase is estimated to reach 50% of the transaction revenue output.

GIC Aligns With the Growing Tide of Large Scale Investors

As per a previous report by Bloomberg, the entrance of a major national investment fund like GIC into the crypto space appears to align with the growing tide of large scale investors. This includes the prestigious Ivy League university endowments Harvard and Yale both of which have backed the innovative asset class.

Cointelegraph wrote in November of 2018 that GIC has joined the Singapore government-owned investment initiative Temasek Holdings Pte. The goal is to back enterprise Blockchain software startup and global banking behemoth R3.

In February 2019, Grayscale Investments reported that the share of its capital inflow is caused by institutional investors is now rising.

Dear Silicon Valley, There Is A New Bish In Town – Zilliqa: Best Blockchain Ever?

The launch of Zilliqa is good news for the industry. It is a major leap towards the collective vision of the industry leaders and the blockchain in itself of …

Hearing the word blockchain has lost its ring now, we hear blockchain and we think a lack of scalability, interoperability, and adoption, these are pain points that nobody wants to talk about in the industry.

We are sick and tired of hearing that a solution is being worked on by so and so and that the issue will be resolved and the world will be a better world through cryptos and blockchain. And this dream is the one that leaves a sour after taste, because of its lack of truth and time sensitivity, also progress.

Its the month of Feb, not only are the cupids settling in towns but on the block-town things are moving fast with the first ever sharder in the house! This is huge because, dearest silicon valley, you have a virtual competitor and this one will beat you to your game by what it looks like right now.

The launch of Zilliqa is good news for the industry. It is a major leap towards the collective vision of the industry leaders and the blockchain in itself of enabling innovative blockchain-powered solutions to real-world problems. The dream can now be logically supported. With this launch, Zilliqa is now the first public blockchain platform to successfully implement sharding, to address one of the biggest challenges to mainstream blockchain adoption – scalability.

Here’s how it promises to do it. And the tech geeks are swearing by it.

Sharding: The network supports transaction sharding for both regular payment transactions and those that invoke smart contracts.

PBFT-style blockchain: Zilliqa will be one of the very few PBFT-style (Practical Byzantine Fault Tolerance) blockchains available today. A PBFT-style consensus mechanism is efficient and gives finality to transactions so that confirmations are not required.

Safe smart contracts: The protocol comes shipped with our new safe-by-design smart contract language, Scilla.

Dual and eco-friendly mining: By using PoW only for Sybil resistance, the energy footprint of mining on Zilliqa will be much smaller compared to the blockchains that use PoW to reach consensus on every block.

These among other things are set to change the way we feel when the word hits out eardrums. Take a look and if you disagree, you are free to dissent, comment, and roast. Let’s see what you come up with. You might be surprised by the qualities here and there is so much they are trying to unlock, let’s see if they perform or fail.

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$1.3 Million Bitcoin Scam Swindles Victims in Thailand. Are Tougher Crypto Regulations Necessary?

A virtual bitcoin mining farm in Thailand has allegedly scammed users out of 42 million baht (approximately $1.35 million), according to a report in the …

A virtual bitcoin mining farm in Thailand has allegedly scammed users out of 42 million baht (approximately $1.35 million), according to a report in the Bangkok Post.

30 victims have filed a complaint against the company, CryptoMining.Farm. Although police believe the scam may have hit up to 140 individuals.

It comes just months after a group of Thai siblings was accused of defrauding an investor of $24 million in bitcoin. Although Thailand is a booming market for cryptocurrencies, is it time for tougher regulations to crack down on scams and frauds?

Victims report alleged blockchain mining scam https://t.co/W0dgXJ54j3

— Bangkok Post (@BangkokPostNews) February 19, 2019

The $1.35 Million Bitcoin Scam, Explained

The victims claim they were tricked into investing with the promise of outrageous 70% returns.

The website, which is reportedly owned by Vietnam-based Lifetime Technology Co. Ltd.,offers virtual bitcoin mining contracts to unsuspecting investors.

Virtual mining works by leasing shared mining power from a larger data center. In theory, it allows you to profit from cryptocurrency mining without purchasing or running the hardware yourself.

In reality, many virtual mining operations are shady, opaque, and outright scams. They boast inflated profit calculations and hide information about the true mining operation.

Crypto-mining scams are on the rise, and attackers are silently stealing millions in virtual currency: https://t.co/fbv8oH6fh5#cryptocurrency#bitcoinpic.twitter.com/Xne8KVjauW

— IBM Security (@IBMSecurity) March 11, 2018

“Guaranteed” 70% Annual Returns

One victim said he was promised he could withdraw his money at any time. But that soon changed:

“From August the owner began imposing conditions for withdrawing the money. Then at the start of this month, the site announced it would start paying back investors in 84 installments — which would take over seven years to complete.”

The timing coincides with the plunging profitability of bitcoin mining. Research firm Diar reported that bitcoin mining turned unprofitable in September 2018.

Tougher Crypto Regulations Needed?

As CCN previously reported, Thailand’s deputy prime minister Wissanu Krea-ngam has called for tougher crypto regulations. Speaking in Bangkok last year, he said it had become increasingly difficult for authorities to identify bad actors.

In August 2018, it was alleged that Thai scammers conned a Finnish millionaire out of 5,564.4 bitcoins (worth $24 million). Aarni Otava Saarimaa was tricked into buying a cryptocurrency called DragonCoin.

Saarimaa sent the funds via bitcoin to the scammers’ wallets. Instead of honoring the investment, the frauds cashed it out to buy property in Thailand. Among the alleged scammers was soap actor Jiratpisit ‘Boom’ Jaravijit.

Thai actor Jiratpisit ‘Boom’ Jaravijit arrested for his alleged involvement in $24 million bitcoin scam. Image source: Khaosod English

Thailand has already passed legislation to clamp down on initial coin offerings (ICOs). But is this recent scam proof that tougher rules are needed?

Thailand Still a Leader in Crypto Adoption

Despite the scam, Thailand remains at the forefront of blockchain and cryptocurrency adoption.

As CCN reported, the Thai stock exchange just applied for a cryptocurrency license. If passed it would allow traders to buy and sell digital assets on the country’s largest exchange.

Thailand is also embracing the power of blockchain. The country’s largest opposition party recently held an election using blockchain technology. Thailand is even considering tapping blockchain to track VAT payments.

With rapid growth and adoption, however, comes the higher likelihood of scams and frauds. As an emerging cryptocurrency pioneer, Thailand must quickly learn how to balance growth with regulation.