Bitcoin
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Episode 75
Featuring Pierre Rochard
Demetri Kofinas speaks with bitcoin maximalist Pierre Rochard, about arguments for hyperbitcoinization, including a conversation about anarcho-capitalism, governance, decentralization, monetary theories of value, lightning network, and the importance of bitcoin’s supply schedule in setting it apart from the rest of the crypto ecosystem.

In this week’s episode of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Pierre Rochard, a self-ascribed “bitcoin maximalist,” who co-founded the Satoshi Nakamoto Institute and who has been a researcher, investor, and software developer in the space since early 2013. In addition to developing Bitcoin software, Pierre is an outspoken advocate for Bitcoin's decentralized governance, the operator of one of the largest Lightning Network routing hubs, and the host of the Nodded Bitcoin Podcast.  

 

This conversation is broken into two parts. The first deals with fundamental questions concerning bitcoin’s base layer protocol, the supply schedule, governance, decentralization, utility, and challenges to layer 1 scalability. Included in this first part is a fascinating conversation about anarcho-capitalism and the role of Austrian economics and theories of hard money in the bitcoin community with comparisons made between bitcoin and gold.   

 

The second part of the conversation, which is available as a 40-minute overtime segment for our subscribers, consists of a prolonged series of discussions on hyperbitcoinization, including the mechanics of a speculative attack by bitcoin against the US dollar and other fiat currencies. Also discussed are the existential threats posed by governments and how Pierre believes that bitcoin will manage to overcome all of them on its path towards becoming the global currency standard in the 21st century. Demetri ends by asking Pierre for his predictions and forecasts, not only for bitcoin but for the market more broadly, including a conversation on how he’s positioning himself for the start of the next bull phase in crypto.  

 

Additional topics include monetary theories of value, the Lindy effect, Gresham’s law, and layer 2 solutions for scaling bitcoin as a viable medium of exchange.

 

As a reminder, all information provided in this podcast is for informational purposes only and should not be viewed as financial advice, nor should it be relied upon as the basis for financial decisions.

 

Producer & Host: Demetri Kofinas

Editor & Engineer: Stylianos Nicolaou

Join the conversation on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter at @hiddenforcespod

Pierre Rochard has been involved with Bitcoin as a researcher, investor, and software developer since February 2013. He co-founded the Satoshi Nakamoto Institute to curate the best primary source literature on Bitcoin and cryptography. In addition to developing Bitcoin software, Pierre is an outspoken advocate for Bitcoin's decentralized governance. In 2017 he began co-hosting the Noded Bitcoin Podcast

 

Pierre is recognized as an authority on the investment case for Bitcoin. He has previously worked at Deloitte, BitPay, Hudson River Trading, and Axial. His successful open source software projects include BitcoinACKs.com and the Node Launcher. He operates one of the largest Lightning Network routing hubs, LightningPowerUsers.com.

 

@pierre_rochard

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Crypto
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Special Episode
Featuring Haseeb Qureshi
Haseeb Qureshi of MetaStable Capital, joins us to discuss the recent 51% attack against Ethereum Classic, its implications for exchanges that continue to list smaller market-cap cryptos like ETC, Dash, Monero, etc., and what it means for the debate between proof-of-work and proof-of-stake.

In this week’s episode of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Haseeb Qureshi of MetaStable Capital about the recent 51% attack against Ethereum Classic, its implications for exchanges that continue to list smaller market-cap cryptos like ETC, Dash, Monero, etc., and what it means for the debate between proof-of-work and proof-of-stake.

 

On January 5th, 2019, the digital currency exchange Coinbase detected a deep chain reorganization of the Ethereum Classic blockchain. In order to protect customer funds, they immediately paused interactions with the ETC blockchain. Coinbase reported the 51% attack on January 7, 2019, but a few people on Twitter had already become aware that something wasn’t right with ETC. Pierre Rochard, an emerging thought-leader in the Bitcoin space, asked ETC developer Donal McIntyre on Twitter:  “Was there a deep reorg on Ethereum Classic yesterday?… 75 blocks deep I hear, with a double-spend.” Donal McIntyre replied: “Well ETC is still small and has many enemies so an attack with sufficient GPU power may be plausible, but I will check with others in the ecosystem.”

 

Cryptocurrencies that are not dominant in their respective mining algorithm, especially ones for which hashing power can be easily rented out, are more vulnerable to being 51% attacked than are other cryptocurrencies with larger market-caps that are not ASIC-resistant. According to Charlie Lee, founder of Litecoin, “ETC has less than 5% of the total Ethash hashrate and is 98% NiceHash-able. 1-hr attack costs $5k,” making it particularly vulnerable according to these two metrics.

 

Reports of the amount stolen in the attack range from the low six-figures to over one million dollars worth of ETC. Perhaps what is most remarkable is that this is only the latest 51% attack against a smaller-cap currency where the attack did not materially impact the price of the cryptocurrency in question.

 

Demetri and Haseeb explore the reasons why the price of ETC was largely unaffected, what this latest attack means for the listing (or delisting) of similarly sized cryptocurrencies, and how this is sparking a larger debate about the efficacy of proof-of-work vs. proof-of-stake as mechanisms for securing a cryptocurrency.

 

Producer & Host: Demetri Kofinas

Editor & Engineer: Stylianos Nicolaou

Join the conversation on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter at @hiddenforcespod

Haseeb Qureshi is a partner at MetaStable Capital, a leading cryptocurrency hedge fund. Haseeb was formerly a software engineer at Airbnb and Earn.com and teaches a seminar on cryptocurrencies at the Bradfield School of Computer Science. He's collaborated with researchers from Cornell on analyzing blockchain frontrunning attacks and previously made a living as a top-ranked professional poker player.

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Ethereum
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Episode 57
Featuring Joseph Lubin
Scalability challenges have plagued the ethereum network since its creation. As a co-founder of ethereum, as well the founder of the ecosystem’s largest development incubator, no one has made a bigger bet on the future of blockchain technology than Joseph Lubin has. He joins us to discuss the challenges and opportunties for Cosensys.

In this week’s episode of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Joseph Lubin about the progress being made at Consensys and precisely how Joe believes that Ethereum will overcome the scalability challenges that have plagued its network since the earliest days of its founding.

 

For the last few years, many blockchain enthusiasts have been eagerly anticipating the release of what many have referred to as “the Netflix moment.” In other words, blockchain enthusiasts expect to see a killer application running atop Ethereum, or some other distributed ledger, that will be adopted by the mass consumer. One of the criticisms of this view is that comparisons between the mid-to-late 1990’s and the current era in blockchain technology are overblown. It took twenty years of Internet protocol development and tweaking before Tim Berners-Lee gave us the World Wide Web in 1989. It wasn’t until 1998 that Netflix released its online, DVD rental store. When asked about the comparison between 90’s Internet and today's blockchain technology, Joseph Lubin makes the point that there isn’t going to be one moment when the scalability problems are “solved.” According to Joe, the process of scaling a complex, permissionless database is "always ongoing." To his point, ConsenSys alone employs close to 40 engineers who are working just on the Ethereum base layer protocols, clients, and enterprise scaling solutions. The company is closely aligned with a variety of efforts currently being undertaken to scale the ethereum network, including sharding, proof-of-stake, Casper CBC, Casper FFG, and a number of layer two solutions including state channels and plasma. Demetri has already devoted an entire episode to exploring some of these layer one solutions in great detail with Vitalik Buterin and Vlad Zamfir. That said, Joseph Lubin offers an additionally interesting perspective on some of the layer two protocols, which he thinks can solve many of ethereum’s throughput limitations without requiring applications to reconcile directly on the main chain for every transaction. Demetri and Joe spend a good deal of time exploring the challenges of building layer two solutions in more depth, including the counterparty risk problem created from the use of state channels.

 

Additional topics include SEC regulations, artificial intelligence, and questions about specific applications in the areas of news, music, and team organization. Demetri asks Joseph Lubin about Ujo Music, Civil, OpenLaw, as well as something called TMNT or “Traditional Management Nullification Tools,” which enables a different organizational approach to team and systems management that more closely resembles an organism than a corporation.

 

Producer & Host: Demetri Kofinas

Editor & Engineer: Stylianos Nicolaou

Join the conversation on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter at @hiddenforcespod

Joseph Lubin is a co-founder of blockchain computing platform Ethereum and the founder of Consensus Systems, a blockchain venture studio. Lubin graduated from Princeton University with a degree in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science (1987 – 1992). He worked in the Princeton Robotics Lab, at tomandandy music developing an autonomous music composition tool, and at private research firm Vision Applications Inc. building autonomous mobile robots. As a software engineer and consultant, Joseph Lubin worked with eMagine on the Identrus project and was involved in the founding and operation of a hedge fund with a partner. He held positions as Director of the New York office of Blacksmith Software Consulting, and VP of Technology in Private Wealth Management at Goldman Sachs. Through these posts, Lubin focused on the intersection of cryptography, engineering, and finance. Switching gears, Lubin moved to Kingston, Jamaica to work on projects in the music industry. Two years into his musical endeavors, Joseph Lubin co-founded the Ethereum Project and has been working on Ethereum and ConsenSys since January 2014.

 

Twitter @ethereumJoseph

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Hashgraph
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Hashgraph
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Episode 56
Featuring Tom Trowbridge
Hashgraph made its public debut less than one year ago. It has since raised over $100mln on its way towards the release of its public ledger. In this conversation, President Tom Trowbridge, shares stories about the team’s challenges, its successes, and how he thinks the future will shake out for competing protocols.

In this week’s episode of Hidden Forces, Demetri Kofinas speaks with Hedera Hashgraph President Tom Trowbridge about the latest news from the company that made its splash on the Hidden Forces podcast less than one year ago.

 

In the Fall of 2008, equity markets were in free fall. The Dow Jones Industrial Average, S&P 500, and Nasdaq Composite were all on their way towards lows not seen since the mid-1990’s. Stock valuations would collapse by more than fifty percent, prominent investment banks filed for bankruptcy while others fled into the rapacious arms of their competitors or under the safe umbrella of Congress and the Federal Reserve.

 

At the same time as Schumpeter’s ghost was rattling his chains on Wall Street, Satoshi's white paper was making the rounds on a cryptography mailing list in some obscure corner of the Internet. “I’ve been working on a new electronic cash system that’s fully peer-to-peer, with no trusted third party,” he wrote, directing the several hundred recipients to his paper, "Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System.” “Merchants must be wary of their customers,” he writes, “a certain percentage of fraud is accepted as unavoidable. These costs and payment uncertainties can be avoided in person by using physical currency, but no mechanism exists to make payments over a communications channel without a trusted party.” This last bit was only partly true. It was Satoshi’s paper, after all, that made it untrue. Though few realized it at the time, the Bitcoin whitepaper marked the beginning of the Internet’s second act. In the ten years since its publication, we have seen an explosion of interest, development, and investment in protocols built from Satoshi’s underlying blockchain technology, designed to execute commands across a distributed, trustless network of computers. Ethereum led the way with its pioneering Virtual Machine, able to execute smart contracts across a permissionless network, and since, several competing ledgers have cropped up, each claiming some advancement over prior versions.

 

But what if, in their bid to create a faster horse, developers and investors alike have missed a crucial turning point in the evolution of the Internet? Satoshi’s white paper, brilliant as it was, never claimed to be the blueprint for a world computer. As the bitcoin network has grown, so too have the costs of its transactions, and this is because adding blocks takes time. Deciding what chain to build on requires the network to agree on which chain is the longest, and when chains are growing too fast, it’s hard to tell the difference. In the last several years we’ve seen an explosion of brainpower devoted towards creating workarounds to the scalability problem, but we’ve also seen a quiet, committed effort at building alternatives that aren’t saddled with blockchain’s limitations.

 

Perhaps the most interesting of these alternatives is hashgraph, built as a directed acyclic graph, it’s fundamental innovation is not in its architecture, but in its consensus. Even to those who see promise in hashgraph, the technology can often seem like magic. One might describe its consensus protocol as nothing more than a compression algorithm for the casting of votes. What would have once taken an impossible amount of time, can now be accomplished in a matter of seconds. A voting algorithm for a global network. It was Claude Shannon, the father of information theory, who stated it most clearly: “The fundamental problem of communication is that of reproducing at one point either exactly or approximately a message selected at another.”

 

In its first iteration, the Internet solved the problem of communication across a network without the need for a trusted third party, but making definitive statements about that communication has always required an intermediary. In order to harness the full power of the Internet, we need to do for data processing, computation, and storage what the existing suite of Internet protocols have already done for communication. A revolution for a new generation. The Internet’s second act.

 

Producer & Host: Demetri Kofinas

Editor & Engineer: Stylianos Nicolaou

Join the conversation on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter at @hiddenforcespod

Play
Special Episode
Featuring Bruce Schneier & Leemon Baird
Special Episode
Featuring Bruce Schneier & Leemon Baird

Tom Trowbridge is the President of Hedera Hashgraph. Prior to joining, he started and ran the New York office for UK-based Odey Asset Management. Before Odey, he held various positions at Lombard Odier, Atticus Capital, and Goldman Sachs. He began his career in 1996 as an investment banker in the telecom group at Bear, Stearns & Co., and subsequently spent three and a half years at the private equity firm Alta Communications, where he executed ten deals in technology, telecom, and media and served on two boards. Tom has a BA from Yale University and an MBA from Columbia University, where he was a member of Beta Gamma Sigma.

 

@hashgraph

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Cryptocurrency
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Episode 55
Featuring Ryan Selkis
Information has become, quite literally, the currency of the digital age. In a world of informational abundance, the quality of that information increasingly determines the types of decisions we make. Ryan Selkis joins us to explain how his company, Messari, is helping us locate the signal in the noise of a new financial system.

Information has become, quite literally, the currency of the digital age. Yet, even before the advent of cryptocurrencies, investors have always understood information to be a valuable asset. “The most valuable commodity I know of is information,” said the iconic Wall Street villain Gordon Gekko. However, information is a commodity, only in so far as it derives its value from the computational efforts of those who seek to process it. In a world of informational abundance, the quality of our computations, not their quantity, determine the scale of our harvest.

 

Ryan Selkis believes that harvesting, processing, and storing data about the crypto economy can be done better. His team at Messari is building an open data library, as well as a set of curation tools that will help researchers, investors, and regulators make sense of the industry. Ryan has stated outright that the “Bloomberg of crypto will be a network, not a centralized company.” This is where his work on token-curated registries factors in.

 

“Token-curated registries are decentrally-curated lists with intrinsic economic incentives for token holders to curate the list’s contents judiciously,” wrote Mike Goldin, in a 2017 article titled “Token-Curated Registries 1.0.” You could say that if Wikipedia and Bitcoin had a baby, the child would be a TCR. Such databases could theoretically replace all commercially curated, owned, and operated, libraries on earth, by offering a new set of economic incentives that harness the networks and expertise of the planet’s seven-and-a-half billion people.

 

In this week’s episode of Hidden Forces, Ryan Selkis joins Demetri Kofinas for a conversation about information, cryptocurrency, and how Messari is working to build the database for a new financial system.

 

Producer & Host: Demetri Kofinas

Editor & Engineer: Stylianos Nicolaou

Join the conversation on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter at @hiddenforcespod

Ryan Selkis is co-founder and CEO of Messari, an open, trusted source of cryptoasset data. Prior to founding Messari, he was an entrepreneur-in-residence at ConsenSys, and was on the founding teams of Digital Currency Group, where he managed the firm’s seed investing activity, and CoinDesk, where he led the company’s restructuring and annual Consensus conferences. He has been an investor and prolific writer in the crypto industry since 2013.

 

Messari is building an open-source data library for the cryptoasset community. The library contains financial information, issuer disclosures, and blockchain analytics for thousands of tokens, as well as general information regarding the teams, advisors, and investors affiliated with a given project. Messari is also creating a “whitelist” of cryptoasset projects that abide by community-dictated transparency standards, via its token curated registry. The company also runs one of the industry's most popular newsfeeds and email newsletters.

 

Twitter @twobitidiot

Medium @twobitidiot

 

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Stablecoins
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Stablecoins
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Episode 50
Featuring Nevin Freeman
The future of cryptocurrency may well depends on the success of stablecoins. According to Nevin Freeman, current stablecoin projects are doomed to fail. To explain why, this episode examines the fundamental properties of money, the meaning of value and price, and how existing stablecoins are trying to solve the hard problem of currency.

This is the year of the stablecoin, or so says Nevin Freeman, the founder of a new stable-value cryptocurrency project based in the San Francisco Bay area. In order to understand what stablecoins and how they work, we first need to understand money.

 

In order for something to qualify as money, it has traditionally needed to function as both a store of value, and as a medium of exchange for goods and services. The medium of exchange component of money allows it to function as a vital coordination mechanism for society, allowing humans and international governments and organizations to collaborate on a massive scale. Money is thus an intrinsic part of our capitalist infrastructure and, without currency, many of our most important institutions and organizational structures would collapse.

 

Yet, our system of money and credit is not without its share of problems. Middlemen, financial intermediaries, and other central organizations often charge exorbitant fees for their services. These same intermediaries often function as “gatekeepers,” permitting or preventing access to financial counterparities at their discretion. The mismanagement of our financial system by such institutions has become a major source of systemic risk, the brunt of which is disproportionately carried by those at the bottom of the economic pyramid.

 

Cryptocurrencies offer a possible solution to many of the most prominent problems associated with fiat currency systems. However, there are significant roadblocks on the path to widespread adoption. As we mentioned, in order to qualify as money, a currency needs to both the medium of exchange and store of value functions. This becomes difficult to do when currency volatility can wipe out 50% of your net worth in a single day or double the cost of your company’s inputs overnight.

 

It is no secret that crypto markets are remarkably volatile. Even the most prominent cryptocurrencies - Bitcoin and Ether - fluctuate wildly. Unfortunately, it’s impossible for a decentralized currency to function as an effective store of value if its price varies by as much as 15% on any given day and in any given direction. Even if the cryptocurrency in question were rarely to drop in price, upside volatility can create a speculative feed-back loop that discourages anyone from actually using it as a medium of exchange. Why would you pay someone’s salary in bitcoin if you expected the currency to be worth more after you sold it? In this sense, even a highly volatile asset with little downside risk that serves as a great store of value can still be a poor medium of exchange.

 

Until cryptocurrencies are able to function as both a store of value and as a medium of exchange, they are unlikely to become truly mainstream or see real-world adoption. Yet, as previously mentioned in the case of bitcoin, a cryptocurrency’s capacity to store value directly undermines it’s use as a medium of exchange. How do we resolve this paradox?

 

This is where stablecoins come in. They aim to solve the problems of our volatile crypto markets by establishing price-stable cryptocurrencies that are pegged to some other stable asset, for example, the US dollar. Notably, these pegs are not determined by supply and demand. Instead, stablecoins effectively “price themselves” by making a standing promise to fulfill any buy or sell order at a set price, regardless of changes in demand for the currency by market participants. In traditional currency pegs and exchange rate mechanisms, currency boards manage the value of the peg by overseeing the promise to buy or sell at a preset conversion price. So, how does a currency peg work in the case of stablecoins?Here is an overview of how the most prominent stablecoin projects on the market promise to do this today:

 

Traditional asset-backed stablecoins: In short, under this system, each unit of the particular stablecoin is backed by a corresponding unit of fiat currency. Let’s use the US dollar as an example. According to this system, a third-party issuer sells tokens for one dollar each. The issuer then keeps all the dollars taken in from these sales in an account. If an individual holding a unit of the stablecoin wishes to cash out, the third party gives a US Dollar to the holder and removes a unit of the stablecoin.

 

The problems with this method loom large. First, there’s the obvious fact that, at any moment, the organization or individual issuing the stablecoin can abscond with all the money that’s supposed to be in the bank account. Second, a government or other centralized organization could freeze the aforementioned account of the issuer, which would grind the project to an abrupt halt. In short, there’s a lot of risk and a lot of trust needed for this method to function properly.

 

Collateralized Debt Stablecoins: Under this system, instead of attempting to back units of a stablecoin one-to-one with a fiat currency, the stablecoins hold a ratio greater than one-to-one of a crypto asset (or more commonly, various kinds of crypto assets). The way this works is rather simple. An individual who holds a crypto asset can deposit this asset into a smart contract, which creates a stablecoin for them. 

 

The peg (the value of the stablecoin) is primarily maintained by the promise of future redemption for collateral if the stablecoin price diverges from the target for too long or the value of the collateral begins to drop. In either of these cases, all of the stablecoin holders can trade their coins for $1 worth of the collateralized crypto assets. In theory, speculators will step in to buy stablecoins below the target price based on this promise of future redemption and that will keep the price stable all of the time. The primary problem with this system is that that the underlying collateral is, by its very nature, volatile. As a result, in order to ensure itself against significant price drops, the system needs to hold a significant amount of collateral (often two-to-one, or even more). This is also a much more complex system, making it difficult to implement in a way that is efficient.

 

Future Growth-Backed Stablecoins: According to this system, the value is maintained by neither fiat or cryptocurrency holdings. Instead, a central account is created that uses algorithms to maintain the stability and manage the supply of the cryptocurrency in the face of fluctuating demand. It accomplishes this by increasing the number of stablecoins when the price goes up and decreasing the number when the price goes down. The increase in stablecoin supply is meant to reduce the market price of the coin to its target level. Conversely, when the price of the stablecoin drops below its target price, the system will reduce the supply of stablecoins and increase the price of the coin so that it returns to its target level. The primary issue with this method is tied to speculators. If they happen to lose interest in purchasing or actively begin to short the stablecoin, then the peg eventually breaks because the entire mechanism becomes worthless.

 

At the moment, it remains unclear which system, if any, will work. History has not been kind to currency boards, and the challenges of implementing a purely digital version of a currency peg has never before been tried until now.

 

In order to better understand the nature of stablecoins, and the promise that they have, Nevin Freeman joins us for a conversation about money and the fundamental properties of currency.

 

Ultimately, this is an exploration of how we can make cryptocurrencies a true store of value, while at the same time enabling these decentralized currencies to function as real and viable mediums of exchange.

 

Producer & Host: Demetri Kofinas

Editor & Engineer: Stylianos Nicolaou

Join the conversation on FacebookInstagram, and Twitter at @hiddenforcespod

Nevin Freeman began life as an environmentalist in southern Oregon, where he studied wilderness preservation, thought about climate change, and considered ways of producing energy more efficiently. He stuck with this theme in college, studying mechanical and transportation system engineering in Portland, Oregon, in hopes of producing more efficient vehicles. But upon graduating, Nevin realized his understanding of the global ecosystem was simplistic and he was not on track to single-handedly solve global climate change the way he had imagined as a child.

 

After reflecting on why he wanted to preserve the ecosystem on the planet in the first place and realizing the thing he valued was flourishing of conscious beings, Nevin took a much broader approach to thinking about global problems and opportunities, integrating himself into the Future of Humanity Institute community, and co-creating the Effective Altruism movement – a group of people relying on reason and evidence to find the highest leverage ways of improving our world. He co-produced the first Effective Altruism Summit, directed the second one, and facilitated its transition to what is now Effective Altruism Global.

 

Nevin has spent his recent years building Paradigm Academy, a company builder in the Bay Area that specializes in recruiting and training ambitious, altruistic founders. Last year, Nevin left his full-time role at Paradigm to spin off Reserve, a full-stack open currency designed to bring economic stability to regions in the world with inflation problems. The Reserve team comes largely out of the Effective Altruism community, where many people aim to earn profits in order to fund the most important causes in the world.

 

Nevin's mission in life is to solve the coordination problems that are stopping humanity achieving its potential, and he’s particularly concerned about averting the long-term risks posed by the development of artificial intelligence. You can reach him through LinkedIn.

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Crypto
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Episode 36
Featuring Leemon Baird
Hedera Hashgraph is a public ledger built using the hashgraph consensus protocol. Here, Leemon Baird discusses how Hedera does proxy staking, sharding, and its unique approach to open review, governance, and regulatory compliance.

In this week’s episode of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas interviews Leemon Baird about the launch of Hedera Hashgraph, a public ledger built atop the hashgraph consensus protocol that aims to serve as the trust layer of the modern Internet.

 

Hedera implements a suite of solutions that we have never seen before in a public ledger. Its method of governance is unique. Its open review approach to software development challenges the paradigm that has dominated the world of cryptoeconomics for the past decade. Its approach to database sharding allows for massive increases in throughput and its approach to proxy staking incentivizes ownership without the burden of having to stand your own node.

 

Is the technological superiority of hashgraph enough to secure its success as the utility protocol of the future, or will blockchain developers reject a model of governance that demands stability over the right of any one individual to copy the code and fork the ledger?

 

Producer & Host: Demetri Kofinas

Editor & Engineer: Stylianos Nicolaou

Join the conversation at @hiddenforcespod

 

Leemon Baird is the inventor of the hashgraph distributed consensus algorithm, and is the Co-founder and CTO of Hedera Hashgraph and Swirlds Inc. With over 20 years of technology and startup experience, he has held positions as a Professor of Computer Science at the Air Force Academy and as a senior scientist in several labs. He has been the co-founder of several startups, including two identity-related starts-ups, which were acquired. He received his PhD in Computer Science from Carnegie Mellon University, and has multiple patents and publications in peer-reviewed journals and conferences in computer security, machine learning, and mathematics.

 

@LeemonBaird

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Crypto
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Episode 35
Featuring Alex Mashinsky
Demetri Kofinas speaks with Alex Mashinsky, CEO of Celsius, a next generation lending wallet. In this conversation, we examine the mechanics behind the Celsius Network, as well as how the company intends to manage risk, execute short sales on behalf of institutional clients, and lower borrowing costs for users.

In this week’s episode of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Alex Mashinsky. Alex is the founder, and CEO of Celsius, a next generation lending wallet that aims to be the ‘Killer App’ of the bitcoin and cryptocurrency revolution. Celsius attempts to overcome the limitations of a traditional banking system by leveraging technology and rethinking lending for the 21st century. A serial entrepreneur, Mashinsky is the founder of seven New York City-based startups with over three billion dollars’ worth of exits to his name. He is a serial inventor with over 35 patents, relating to exchanges, VOIP protocols, messaging & communication. Alex Mashinksy is also one of the inventors of Voice Over Internet Protocol with a foundational patent dating back to 1994.

 

In their conversation, Demetri attempts to understand the mechanics behind the Celsius Network, as well as how the company intends to manage risk, execute short sales on behalf of institutional clients, and lower borrowing costs for its users. Who are Celsius' main competitors, and how does its lending wallet differ from the competition? How are loans issued on the Celsius network? How does the CEL token work, and how does it incentivize the network to service its customers and not some financial middleman? What is the revenue model for this network? How does Celsius generate income from lending, short sales, and staking? What are some of the unintended consequences that could arise from a securitization market in cryptocurrencies? What are the risks associated with hoarding utility tokens in a proof-of-stake system? Could Celsius and other networks become central points of attack for malicious actors looking to destabilize the Ethereum once it moves from proof-of-work to proof-of-stake? Finally, what is the timeline for Celsius' new wallet and how soon will crypto holders be able to rely on it as a real source of credit and interest-bearing income?

 

Producer & Host: Demetri Kofinas

Editor & Engineer: Stylianos Nicolaou

Join the conversation at @hiddenforcespod

 

 


Alex Mashinsky was born into communism, reared under socialism, and is currently thriving under capitalism. He is a prominent Israeli-American entrepreneur who has founded several companies over the years, including GroundLink, Transit Wireless, Elematics and Arbinet.

Alex's success as an entrepreneur stems from his acute ability to identify winning trends and assemble world-class teams. Two of his companies, Arbinet and Transit Wireless achieved a monopolistic hold in their respective industries and pioneered new business models and technologies used today.

Alex has a long history with tech in fact, evidenced by his powerful intellectual property portfolio. He has authored over 50 patents that cover aspects of the Smart Grid,  Ad exchanges, Groupon, Twitter, Skype, App Store, Netflix streaming concept and many other top performing web companies. He is one of the leading evangelists of web-based exchanges and is even considered to be one of the early developers of VOIP.

Due to his extensive experience as a prolific inventor and a business strategist, Alex has been a featured speaker at over 120 international conferences. He has also made numerous TV appearances on talk shows.

He has received numerous awards, notably the prestigious Albert Einstein Technology Medal in 2000, the Technology Foresight Award for Innovation (presented in Geneva at Telecom '99) and Crain's Top Entrepreneur Award in 2010. He has also been nominated for E&Y's Entrepreneur of the Year Award in 2002 and 2011.

After years of entrepreneurship, Alex subsequently gravitated towards investing in startups, founding his early stage venture capital firm, Governing Dynamics. Over the years, Alex has raised over $1 billion in venture and private equity funds to help position his startups as leaders in their fields. Arbinet's fundraising efforts were even documented in an HBS case study in 2001.

Currently based in New York, Alex serves as a Managing Partner of Governing Dynamics. The firm has a keen interest in helping Israeli startups scale-up in the United States. The immense growth potential of the "startup nation" and its advances in high-tech - particularly in AI, biotech and cybersecurity - interests Alex greatly, who has a strong affiliation with Israel.

Having grown up, attended college and served in the military there, many of his ventures started out based in Israel - which he then went on to scale in the US. Thus, he has been fostering Israeli-American business ties for years, and he hopes to continue to do so with his work at Governing Dynamics.

Alex has invested in over 60 startups over the years, recording many successes and an equal number of failures. As a prominent figure in the New York entrepreneurial scene, he has previously been a member of the YPO's NYC chamber. He believes that "the secret to success is finding something to do in which your skills can exceed your ambitions."

 

@Mashinsky

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Episode 34
Featuring Brian Kelly
Demetri Kofinas speaks with author, investor, and contributor to CNBC's Fast Money Brian Kelly about the problem of scalability, exchange & regulatory risk, cash-settled futures & ETF’s, and how bitcoin may fare compared to gold during a financial crisis. They also contemplate the impact of systemic trading on market downturns.

In this week’s episode of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Brian Kelly, CEO of BKCM LLC, a digital asset investment firm. He is an experienced Global Macro investor with over twenty-five years’ experience in financial markets and a CNBC contributor who appears regularly on Fast Money.

 

Our most recent episodes with Chris Burniske on modeling cryptoassets and with Ari Paul on cryptocurrency trading methodologies introduced two foundational frameworks to our audience. This week's episode with Brian Kelly affords our audience the opportunity to explore both of these perspectives (theory and execution) in a single conversation. Brian Kelly is uniquely qualified to talk about the financial side of cryptocurrencies, but he also provides valuable perspective on how the media is covering this space.

 

Brian begins his conversation with Demetri by recounting his introductory experience to bitcoin, how he made his first investments, and what he learned in the year he wrote his book “The Bitcoin Big Bang.” The two explore familiar topics like the problem of scalability, exchange and regulatory risk, cash-settled futures and ETF’s, and how bitcoin may fare to gold during a systemic financial crisis. Is there any way to measure the intrinsic value of a given cryptocurrency? Can permissioned blockchains compete with public ledgers, or will cryptocurrencies come to dominate the future of software? Besides bitcoin and Ethereum, what are some of the more interesting cryptocurrency investment opportunities out there? Brian and Demetri also cover the recent spike in financial volatility amid this rising interest rate environment. Lastly, they consider how the rise of systemic trading strategies and passive investment vehicles like ETFs may accelerate (or not) a future market downturn.

 

Producer & Host: Demetri Kofinas

Editor & Engineer: Stylianos Nicolaou

Join the conversation at @hiddenforcespod

 

Brian Kelly is Founder and CEO of BKCM LLC, an investment firm focused on digital currencies. He is the portfolio manager of the BKCM Digital Asset Fund. Brian is the author of "The Bitcoin Big Bang – How Alternative Currencies Are About to Change the World."

 

Prior to BKCM LLC, Brian was Co-Founder and Managing Partner of Shelter Harbor Capital LLC and managed the Shelter Harbor Capital Global Macro Hedge Fund. As well, Mr. Kelly was a co-founder and President of MKM Partners, a brokerage firm catering to institutional investment managers.

 

Brian provides money management services to a select clientele and consults on digital currencies.

Brian is a graduate of the University of Vermont where he received a B.S. in finance. He also holds an M.B.A. from Babson Graduate School of Business with a concentration in finance and econometrics.

 

@BKBrianKelly

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Episode 32
Featuring Ari Paul
Demetri Kofinas speaks with Ari Paul, co-founder and CIO of BlockTower Capital, a hedge fund focused on the cryptocurrency space about how are crypto funds are managing risk, what some of the most interesting and creative investment opportunities are and how investors can take advantage of them.

In this week’s episode of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Ari Paul, co-founder, and CIO of BlockTower Capital, a hedge fund focused exclusively on the cryptocurrency space.

 

Over the course of the last year, cryptocurrency has dominated our society. The price of the most popular digital currencies surged, increasing in value by well over 1000% in a matter of weeks. We saw similar rises in initial coin offerings, with the number of token offerings increasing from just seven a month in January 2017 to more than forty a month by the end of the year.

 

This crypto euphoria fueled the formation of several cryptocurrency hedge funds which, according to their various founders, aim to bring the professional trading and portfolio management of Wall Street to the emerging class of digital asset. Although this work promises to open the crypto space to an entirely new class of traders, there are many questions regarding how these funds work and how reliable they are. For example, how are crypto fund managers managing risk? What sorts of benchmarks are crypto funds using in order to measure performance? And how does a cryptocurrency investor seek alpha in an already uncorrelated market? To answer these questions, and help shed some light on the emerging world of crypto hedge funds, we turned to Ari Paul.

 

As a portfolio manager who oversaw risk at the University of Chicago’s endowment investment office and the Chief Investment Officer at BlockTower Capital - a leading crypto hedge fund that raised over $140 Million in 2017 - Ari Paul is uniquely qualified to discuss the most interesting and creative investment opportunities for making money in cryptocurrencies. His positioning also means that he is intimately familiar with many of the risk factors that populate this new and fledgling market.

 

Over the course of the discussion, Ari Paul speaks with host Demetri Kofinas about the skepticism surrounding market values, how we can protect ourselves from counterparty and exchange risk, and how hedge funds like BlockTower Capital are making it easier for someone who may not be intimately familiar with blockchain technologies or the inner working of specific cryptocurrencies, participate in this new digital economy.

 

Demetri also asks Ari what the benchmarks for crypto funds like Blocktower are and how they measure performance. The challenge in the cryptocurrency space, according to Paul, Is that there are really three benchmarks: bitcoin, cryptocurrencies in general, as well as the broader equity markets. Seeking Alpha in an already uncorrelated asset class, therefore, presents a slew of new risk factors that aren’t present for traditional hedge fund managers. Ari Paul also gives his opinion on how the flood of institutional capital might alter these correlations, what a consolidation in cryptocurrencies might look like, and if we are verging near a collapse in valuations.

 

The two also take a look at cash-settled futures markets, consider the use of put and call options, and explore ways in which investors can better protect themselves from counterparty and exchange risk. Finally, they examine some of the most interesting and creative investment opportunities for making money in cryptocurrencies and what the average investor can do in order to take advantage of them.

 

 

Producer & Host: Demetri Kofinas

Editor & Engineer: Stylianos Nicolaou

Join the conversation at @hiddenforcespod

Ari Paul is the CIO and co-founder of BlockTower Capital. He was previously a portfolio manager for the University of Chicago's $8 billion endowment, and a derivatives market maker and proprietary trader for Susquehanna International Group (SIG). Ari earned a BA in political science from the University of Pennsylvania, and an MBA from the University of Chicago. Ari is a CFA charterholder. BlockTower Capital takes long and short positions across a variety of cryptocurrencies.

 

@AriDavidPaul

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Sed egestas, ante et vulputate volutpat, eros pede semper est, vitae luctus metus libero eu augue. Morbi purus libero, faucibus adipiscing, commodo quis, gravida id, est. Sed lectus. Praesent elementum hendrerit tortor. Sed semper lorem at felis. Vestibulum volutpat, lacus a ultrices sagittis, mi neque euismod dui, eu pulvinar nunc sapien ornare nisl. Phasellus pede arcu, dapibus eu, fermentum et, dapibus sed, urna.

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Episode 31
Featuring Chris Burniske
Demetri Kofinas speaks with Chris Burniske about how to value cryptocurrency. How do we differentiate between currencies, DApps, and tokens? How does one judge the merits of a white paper, the seriousness of the dev team, and the enthusiasm of early adopters? How important is governance, supply schedules, and money velocity in valuations?

In this week’s episode of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Chris Burniske about how to value a cryptocurrency. Chris is a co-founder of Placeholder, a New York venture firm that specializes in cryptoassets. Before Placeholder, Chris Burniske pioneered ARK Invest's Next Generation Internet strategy, leading the company to become the first public fund manager to invest in cryptocurrency. He then transitioned to focus exclusively on cryptoassets, paving the way for Wall Street to recognize it as a new asset class. His commentary has been featured on national media outlets, including the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, Fortune, and Forbes.

 

With the total market capitalization of all cryptocurrency having surpassed $800 billion by the start of 2018, it was only a matter of time before Wall Street would stand up and take notice. The establishment of a cash-settled futures market for bitcoin in late 2017 is one of many bullish signs for the long-term viability of cryptoassets. It has also opened the door to further institutional capital and crypto-focused hedge funds with hundreds of millions of dollars to deploy. The opportunities for profitmaking are too lucrative to ignore, but the flood of institutional and private capital into the cryptocurrency space is also fueling a speculative mania. The newness of this asset class and its lack of historical price data make proper valuations even more challenging. So, given these constraints, the question remains, how do you value cryptocurrency?

 

The answer lies at the intersection of macroeconomics and financial modeling. Chris Burniske and Demetri Kofinas start by laying out a taxonomy for cryptoassets that breaks them into three categories: cryptocurrency, cryptocommodities, and cryptotokens. In their conversation, they explore how one can learn to differentiate between the different currencies, DApps, and tokens. How does one judge the merits of a white paper, the seriousness of the dev team, and the enthusiasm of early adopters? How important is governance? How can volatility in the underlying token impact the robustness of the software? How do supply schedules determine future values? What are some of the most reliable, early indicators of success or failure for a cryptoventure? These are just some of the questions that Demetri and Chris address in this highly informative and timely conversation.

 

Producer & Host: Demetri Kofinas

Editor & Engineer: Stylianos Nicolaou

Join the conversation at @hiddenforcespod

 

 

Chris Burniske is a co-founder of Placeholder, a New York venture firm focused on the economics and governance of cryptonetworks. Prior to Placeholder, he worked at ARK Investment Management as the first buy-side analyst to cover cryptoassets, driving the firm's decision to invest in bitcoin in 2015. 

 

In addition to his work as an investor, Chris co-authored the best-seller, Cryptoassets: The Innovative Investor’s Guide to Bitcoin and Beyond (McGraw Hill, 2017). His commentary has been featured on national media outlets, including the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, Fortune and more. 

 

@cburniske

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Sed egestas, ante et vulputate volutpat, eros pede semper est, vitae luctus metus libero eu augue. Morbi purus libero, faucibus adipiscing, commodo quis, gravida id, est. Sed lectus. Praesent elementum hendrerit tortor. Sed semper lorem at felis. Vestibulum volutpat, lacus a ultrices sagittis, mi neque euismod dui, eu pulvinar nunc sapien ornare nisl. Phasellus pede arcu, dapibus eu, fermentum et, dapibus sed, urna.

Morbi interdum mollis sapien. Sed ac risus. Phasellus lacinia, magna a ullamcorper laoreet, lectus arcu pulvinar risus, vitae facilisis libero dolor a purus. Sed vel lacus. Mauris nibh felis, adipiscing varius, adipiscing in, lacinia vel, tellus. Suspendisse ac urna. Etiam pellentesque mauris ut lectus. Nunc tellus ante, mattis eget, gravida vitae, ultricies ac, leo. Integer leo pede, ornare a, lacinia eu, vulputate vel, nisl.

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Crypto
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Crypto Forces
Featuring Mark DiMichael
Demetri Kofinas speaks with Mark DiMichael, a Forensic Accountant who specializes in the tax implications for cryptocurrencies. What are the filing requirements for anyone who has profited from, transacted in, or mined a cryptocurrency? Do cryptocurrencies qualify under the terms of a like-kind exchange? How can you lower your tax burden?

How do governments tax bitcoin? In this Crypto Forces segment of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Mark DiMichael, a forensic accountant with Citrin Cooperman, who specializes in the Bitcoin tax implications for cryptocurrencies. In this conversation, we define what constitutes a taxable event in bitcoin, ethereum, and other altcoins and cryptocurrencies. We also provide information for those of you looking for help in filing your taxes for bitcoin or any other cryptocurrency in 2017.

 

Is it possible for someone holding bitcoin, ethereum, or some other cryptocurrency to qualify for a 1031 like-kind exchange? How does the recent House and Senate tax law restricting 1031 like-kind exchange to only real estate assets affect cryptocurrency holders going forward? What are the Bitcoin tax filing requirements for anyone who has profited from a cryptocurrency? Are there any loopholes that you should know about when filing your taxes for bitcoin? How does the IRS tax newly mined coins? Does the government require you to pay taxes for bitcoin transactions? Does the IRS tax on Bitcoin protocol tokens like BTC differ from that of utility tokens? What are the crypto tax implications for security or investment tokens like DAO? What are the regulatory and crypto tax requirements around ICO’s, and how does the SEC treat them? How will the gains made by anyone holding bitcoin cash as a result of the hard fork in August of 2017, be taxed by governments? Is this asset seen as a dividend, and taxed accordingly? Might the government tax bitcoin (and related) forks similarly to how it taxes farmers and livestock owners, whose newborn calves are seen as part of the original investment, allowing the owner to defer tax liability?

 

Lastly, how many individuals have profited from this new investment class? What is the IRS doing to verify compliance and how do they investigate those who attempt to evade taxes? Are there any exemptions or other legal ways to avoid paying taxes on gains made in bitcoin, ethereum, or any other cryptocurrency?

 

Producer & Host: Demetri Kofinas

Editor & Engineer: Stylianos Nicolaou

Join the conversation at @hiddenforcespod

 

 

Mark DiMichael, a director in the valuation and forensic services department of Citrin Cooperman, specializes in litigation support and valuation services. His specialties include economic damages analysis, divorce litigation, fraud investigation, white collar criminal defense, and business appraisals.

Mark has taught various CPE/CLE classes on economic damages, divorce, and other litigation related topics, as well as cryptocurrency and blockchain and has also provided expert testimony related to economic damages, divorce, and white collar fraud.

 

Recent Articles by Mark:

Taxation of Cryptocurrencies

Security Tokens

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Crypto
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Crypto
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Special Episode
Featuring Mance Harmon
This is the complete audio from “The Future Is Not Blockchain. It’s Hashgraph” panel hosted by Demetri Kofinas on Thursday, October 19, 2017. In it, members of the hashgraph consensus algorithm’s founding team, including the CEO of Swirlds, Mance Harmon, speak with Demetri Kofinas about the future of the Internet.

This is the complete audio from “The Future Is Not Blockchain. It’s Hashgraph” panel hosted by Demetri Kofinas on Thursday, October 19, 2017. In it, members of the hashgraph consensus algorithm’s founding team, including the CEO of Hedera Hashgraph and Swirlds, Mance Harmon, speak with Demetri Kofinas about the future of the Internet.

 

In this blockbuster event, blockchain developers, entrepreneurs, and fans of Hidden Forces ask questions to the founders of hashgraph about their revolutionary technology. Leemon Baird, Mance Harmon, and the rest of the Swirlds team claim to have built an entirely new distributed ledger technology that is better (orders of magnitude more efficient), faster (250,000+ transactions per second pre-sharding), safer (asynchronous byzantine fault tolerant), and fairer (mathematically proven fairness with consensus time stamping) than the blockchain.

 

This is the second installment in a series of interviews, panel discussions, and conversations that Demetri Kofinas has had with the founders of Hashgraph. Hashgraph is a consensus algorithm that may have solved the problem of scale in distributed information management. It is a distributed ledger technology that may do for information processing and storage, what TCP/IP and broadband have done for communication. This could be a revolution unlike any we have seen since the earliest days of the World Wide Web.

 

This event took place at the Assemblage NOMAD in New York City. It was a packed house with over 200 people in attendance from the blockchain and fintech communities who were eager to learn about how the hashgraph consensus algorithm is going to change the future of the Internet.

 

Producer & Host: Demetri Kofinas

Editor & Engineer: Stylianos Nicolaou

Join the conversation at @hiddenforcespod

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Special Episode
Featuring Bruce Schneier & Leemon Baird
Special Episode
Featuring Bruce Schneier & Leemon Baird

Mance Harmon is an experienced technology executive and entrepreneur with more than 20 years of strategic leadership experience in multi-national corporations, government agencies and high-tech startups, and is Co-founder and CEO of Hedera Hashgraph and Swirlds Inc. Prior experience includes serving as the Head of Architecture and Labs at Ping Identity, Founder / CEO of two tech startups, the senior executive for product security at a $1.7B revenue organization, Program Manager for a very-large scale software program for the Missile Defense Agency, the Course Director for Cybersecurity at US Air Force Academy, and research scientist in Machine Learning at Wright Laboratory. Mance received a MS in Computer Science from the University of Massachusetts, and a BS in Computer Science from Mississippi State University.

 

@manceharmon

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Crypto
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Episode 22
Featuring Leemon Baird
Demetri Kofinas speaks with Leemon Baird, the creator of Hedera Hashgraph, a public ledger that may have solved the problem of scale in distributed consensus. Its properties of speed, security, and fairness could expand decentralized use cases to complex markets, auctions, crypto-currency micro payments, live games (even MMOs), and more.

In this week’s episode of Hidden Forces, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Leemon Baird, the inventor of Hashgraph, a new, distributed ledger technology poised to disrupt the entire ecosystem of blockchain-based applications and cryptocurrencies.

 

Leemon Baird is the Co-founder and CTO of Swirlds Inc. With over 20 years of technology and startup experience, he has held positions as a Professor of Computer Science at the Air Force Academy, Adjunct Professor at multiple other prestigious universities, and as a senior scientist in several labs. He has been the co-founder of several startups, including two identity-related starts-ups with successful exits. He received his Ph.D. in Computer Science from Carnegie Mellon University faster than any student in school history (2 years, 9 months), has multiple patents, and over 100 publications in peer-reviewed journals on computer security, machine learning, and mathematics. He regularly keynotes on these topics at conferences.

 

In this nearly hour-long conversation, our audience will get a first-hand look at what may become the future of the Internet. Hashgraph is a revolutionary new distributed ledger technology like no other. It is able to scale faster, with greater safety, and more fairly than any of its blockchain competitors. This makes Hashgraph superior to existing blockchain databases in every way — i.e., unlike blockchain, it is fast/high throughput (100,000< transactions per second pre sharding), fair (mathematically proven fairness with consensus time stamping), and secure (asynchronous byzantine fault tolerant). These properties expand decentralized use cases to complex markets, auctions, crypto-currency micro payments, live games (even MMOs), and much more.

 

Swirlds has secured early funding from New Enterprise Associates and already has enterprise adoption. It has been adopted by credit unions, payment providers, and is currently in due diligence phases with large banks. Official footage was just released of decentralized applications built in 24 hours at the TechCrunch Disrupt 24hr Hackathon using the Hashgraph SDK i.e. a decentralized live game, a decentralized eBay / auction market, a decentralized Disaster Relief Platform , and more. These are examples of distributed applications which cannot be made using current blockchain technology.

 

Producer & Host: Demetri Kofinas

Editor & Engineer: Stylianos Nicolaou

Join the conversation at @hiddenforcespod

 

Play
Special Episode
Featuring Bruce Schneier & Leemon Baird
Special Episode
Featuring Bruce Schneier & Leemon Baird

Leemon Baird is the inventor of the hashgraph distributed consensus algorithm, and is the Co-founder and CTO of Hedera Hashgraph and Swirlds Inc. With over 20 years of technology and startup experience, he has held positions as a Professor of Computer Science at the Air Force Academy and as a senior scientist in several labs. He has been the co-founder of several startups, including two identity-related starts-ups, which were acquired. He received his PhD in Computer Science from Carnegie Mellon University, and has multiple patents and publications in peer-reviewed journals and conferences in computer security, machine learning, and mathematics.

 

@LeemonBaird

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Suspendisse mauris. Fusce accumsan mollis eros. Pellentesque a diam sit amet mi ullamcorper vehicula. Integer adipiscing risus a sem. Nullam quis massa sit amet nibh viverra malesuada. Nunc sem lacus, accumsan quis, faucibus non, congue vel, arcu. Ut scelerisque hendrerit tellus. Integer sagittis. Vivamus a mauris eget arcu gravida tristique. Nunc iaculis mi in ante. Vivamus imperdiet nibh feugiat est.

Crypto
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Crypto Forces
Featuring Gil Luria
Demetri Kofinas speaks with Gil Luria about the economics of bitcoin and the role that governments and regulators will play in this emerging market. How can we use information about supply dynamics and business cycles in mining to help us determine the fair market value of a given cryptocurrency?

In this week’s Crypto Forces segment, host Demetri Kofinas speaks with Gil Luria. Gil is the director of institutional equity research at D.A. Davidson and one of the earliest sell-side analysts to cover Bitcoin. Gil Luria provides us with the Wall Street perspective on Bitcoin. This conversation is also a great complement to our recent crypto forces segment with Andrew Keys. We cover the recent run-up in the price of bitcoin, the economics of bitcoin, and the role that governments and regulators will play in this emerging market. How can we use information about supply dynamics and business cycles in mining to help us determine the fair market value of a given cryptocurrency? What does a business cycle for bitcoin mining look like? How do miners invest in new equipment, and how can overinvestment in mining rigs impact future prices?

 

Producer & Host: Demetri Kofinas

Editor & Engineer: Stylianos Nicolaou

Join the conversation at @hiddenforcespod

 

 

Gil Luria joined D.A. Davidson in March 2017 as Director of Research. Previously Gil was an analyst and head of technology research at Wedbush Securities for 11 years, primarily focused on e-commerce and financial technology companies, having previously covered large U.S. telecommunications companies at Sanford C. Bernstein and as a Manager at Deloitte Consulting. Gil has been a frequent speaker at Blockchain and Bitcoin conferences since 2013, presenting Wall St. to Blockchain professionals, and Blockchain to investment professionals. Gil also makes regular appearances in the media, including CNBC, Bloomberg, Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, and NPR. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from Hebrew University and has an MBA from Columbia Business School.

 

Recent articles with Gil:

 

Bitcoin Extends Rally

Bitcoin Could Reach $98.5k

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Sed egestas, ante et vulputate volutpat, eros pede semper est, vitae luctus metus libero eu augue. Morbi purus libero, faucibus adipiscing, commodo quis, gravida id, est. Sed lectus. Praesent elementum hendrerit tortor. Sed semper lorem at felis. Vestibulum volutpat, lacus a ultrices sagittis, mi neque euismod dui, eu pulvinar nunc sapien ornare nisl. Phasellus pede arcu, dapibus eu, fermentum et, dapibus sed, urna.

Morbi interdum mollis sapien. Sed ac risus. Phasellus lacinia, magna a ullamcorper laoreet, lectus arcu pulvinar risus, vitae facilisis libero dolor a purus. Sed vel lacus. Mauris nibh felis, adipiscing varius, adipiscing in, lacinia vel, tellus. Suspendisse ac urna. Etiam pellentesque mauris ut lectus. Nunc tellus ante, mattis eget, gravida vitae, ultricies ac, leo. Integer leo pede, ornare a, lacinia eu, vulputate vel, nisl.

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Ethereum
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Ethereum
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Crypto Forces
Featuring Andrew Keys
Demetri Kofinas covers all things blockchain related with Andrew Keys of Ethereum’s ConsenSys. The two explore the explosive growth of cryptocurrencies (including security and regulation) and their potential to shape our future. If you have been looking to learn more about Ethereum or the blockchain, then this is the episode for you.

In this week’s Crypto Forces segment, host Demetri Kofinas covers all things blockchain related with Andrew Keys of Ethereum’s Consensus Systems. Andrew’s role at consensus is to help cultivate an ecosystem of distributed application development – everything from payment processing, contract transfers, distributed computing, and even the future of the internet as we know it. Building on the innovation, adoption, and possibilities of Bitcoin, Andrew Keys has immersed himself over the last several years in what many people are calling Bitcoin 2.0 – otherwise known as Ethereum – and has become one of the world’s go-to business ambassadors for blockchain technology and the Ethereum protocol.

 

In today’s conversation, we explore the explosive growth of the cryptocurrency industry – where it’s been, what it looks like today and its potential to shape our collective future. "This is ultimately about the move away from a centralized system for organizing society towards a decentralized one that is more appropriate for the technological present," says Demetri Kofinas. Indeed, the question of centralization versus decentralization is central to the framework of blockchain technology. For all of recorded history, human beings have achieved scale through a bureaucracy. Empires, nation states, and corporations are all built upon layers of authority and thickets of bureaucracy. Blockchain manages to overcome this by shifting the burden of validation from the center to the periphery. In other words, no central authority is required in order to approve any transaction or mediate any dispute among users of the blockchain protocol. There is no need for third-party verification (TPV).

 

If you have been looking for a great resource for learning more about Ethereum or the blockchain, then you have come to the right place. One of Andrew Keys' main tasks as head of Global Business Development for Consensus Systems is to help educate potential users of this technology on how it all works. You won't be disappointed.

 

Producer & Host: Demetri Kofinas

Editor & Engineer: Stylianos Nicolaou

Join the conversation at @hiddenforcespod

 

Andrew Keys drives ConsenSys’ newest financial services arm, ConsenSys Capital. ConsenSys Capital is a constellation of financial services companies for the infrastructure of tomorrow's global economy, employing blockchain based digital assets. ConsenSys Capital's companies include ConsenSys Ventures, Token Foundry, and ConsenSys Capital Asset Management.

 

Previously, Andrew was head of global business development for ConsenSys and co-founded ConsenSys Enterprise, to create Ethereum blockchain solutions for Fortune 500 companies and governments.

 

Andrew also co-created the first Ethereum Blockchain-as-a-Service offering with Microsoft and started the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance (EEA), an open-source cross-industry initiative focused on permeating Ethereum technology through enterprise environments. EEA is now the largest open-source blockchain initiative on Earth.

 

Andrew comes to ConsenSys with capital markets, healthcare, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, Andrew worked for UBS in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for creation and distribution of alternative asset insurance products to hedge funds. After, he co-founded a healthcare revenue cycle management company where he learned how bad payment processing systems were. This realization led Andrew down the Ethereum blockchain rabbit hole.

 

Andrew graduated from Loyola University in Maryland and University of Auckland with degrees in economics and international finance. He got an A- in his first intro to computer science class in high school, and it has been relatively downhill technically since then.

 

@ConsenSysAndrew

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