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Lisk: Don’t Let the Name Fool You

By | Analysis, Blast

Technology

In it’s mission statement, Lisk’s goal is blockchain technology for everyone. But what does this really mean? Let’s dive in.

One analogy to understanding Lisk is understanding the foundation of what made Microsoft successful. While technology inside computers was revolutionary even before Microsoft existed, it was not until Bill Gates built a way for the average person to utilize this technology did the internet truly take off. The internet needed a way to interact with. With its innovation of the operating system, people could now build things on top of their tools at a much faster pace.

You may have heard the buzz word “blockchain” get thrown around a lot. While there are plenty other resources to help you understand this concept, for now we will simply define blockchain as a super-groovy, next-level technology (much like computers in the 90’s).

In the same way computers needed an operating system like Windows to have your grandma jump on AOL messenger, blockchain needs an operating system of itself. A way for the average person/company to harness it’s power and create things on top of it. This, is where Lisk comes in.

One of the hardest things for a technical team to do is describe their technical product in a non-technical manner. As Lisk describes this struggle, we have to describe it at a “Mom’s level”. While challenging, Lisk gives one of the best visual examples I have ever seen using a simple diagram of a town/city. Let’s take a look.

In the town, you can see a house built on a street. This house represents Lisk and all their technological glory. They have a pool, pantry full of snacks, and a mighty cool media room. Currently, other people have no idea how to build a house of their own. Think of them like cavemen, still trying to figure out fire. How we solve this problem? We teach them.

To help reach the cavemen, from their house, Lisk builds out a road that extends across the city. This road represents the super-cool, groovy blockchain we mentioned earlier. Cavemen now have the ability to flintstone their way to the Lisk house and begin learning the basics of building a house. Maybe how to build a bunk beds. Maybe just how to get Netflix to show on their new 60 inch monitor. The application does not matter. What matters is the Lisk is giving others the tools and applications necessary to build.

Let’s fast forward 4000 Lisk years and Liskville is booming. So much so, the highways are congested with 5pm traffic. This is actually a very common problem of some other cities like Ethereumburg and Bitcointopia. To solve this problem, Lisk has created something called a “side chain”. Let’s think of a side chain as that back alley path to your house that only you know about. Now, even if the super groovy, next-level block chain gets clogged, you have a path to your destination.

Another 2000 Lisk years pass. As the city grows, interactions and ideas inside the community grow. Sky scrapers are built, Chick-fil-a’s are expanding, and coffee shops are becoming hipster havens. So how would it be possible to expand from a city to the entire world? One big obstacle is communication. Currently, in 2017 real world, there are many different languages across the world like English, Spanish, German, and many others. In order to truly become universal, we need a universal language. Lisk uses a dialect called JavaScript. While it has a funny accent, it is the most widely adopted language across our hypothetical universe. By choosing this language as its official language, people can jump on boat across the river and fit right in.

Kuddos to the marketing and graphic design team on this one.

So what are some things you can build with Lisk? Here are some examples directly from their website.

“Possibilities are endless, like developing platform independent social networks, messengers, games and so on. All on your own blockchain network including corresponding token, fully decentralised, and all this without the hassle of complicated consensus algorithms or peer-to-peer networking protocols.”

Team

Almost as impressive as the technology is the team behind Lisk. An all-star bunch

Although the team was hard to locate (have to scroll all the way to to the bottom), they are definitely an impressive bunch. All sporting the classic startup t-shirt with a logo on it, they currently have 28 team members and look to be growing (open positions).  Additionally, they have brand ambassadors from China, Romania, Russia, Australia, France, Italy, and the USA. Strange side note, it was quite interesting to me that the co-founders were not listed above everyone else like I normally see. Not sure if this was intentional, but I thought it was quite refreshing and showed true humility. Here are some of the core members:

Timeline

Currently sitting at #20 on the CMC rankings, Lisk is somehow still flying under the radar to many of the new crypto enthusiast. With an SDK that has yet to be released and a logo that looks like it was made in Minecraft (sorry Max), many potential investors are still overlooking the impact this company could make on the entire blockchain ecosystem. All of that is about to change on February 20th.

Many of us still remember the hype and hysteria surrounding the early Microsoft launches and the occasional wacky moments of Steve Ballmer going crazy on stage. While it’s easy to look back at with eye-rolling cringe, these moments in time were truly indicative of the passion so many had for new technology and innovation.

On February 20th, Lisk is hosting a globally streamed relaunch of their company at the Westhafen Event & Convention Center. Probably the coolest entrance I have ever seen since Walter White on Breaking Bad. It is here, in Berlin Germany, that the team finally plans to unveil the new brand and the technology they have been working so hard on for the last few years.

To give us more insight on what this re-launch could mean to price fluctuation, we can take a look at an eerily similar example just six months ago. On June 22, Ant Shares (“Chinese Ethereum”), announced it would be re-branding to the company we all now know as NEO. On August 14th, just six days after their relaunch was official and finalized, the NEO price jumped 667% to sit at $50 (up from $7.50). The company has continued to rise and now sits at $120 and #12 on CMC.

Since the time of the Lisk re-rebrand announcement on November 22nd, the price has already tripled in price. If you believe in the Lisk team, technology, and marketing abilities; sitting at $60 in Q1 does not seem too out of reach.

Lisk (LSK)

About:  Blockchain Technology for Everyone

Exchanges: Binance, Bittrex, Poloniex

Website: https://lisk.io

Ethos: The Economical Revolution

By | Analysis, Blast

For any revolution to occur, three things must be present:

  1. Innovation
  2. Understanding
  3. Accessibility

Without each of these, at the same moment in time, a revolution is simply an afterthought of potential. The best recipe in the book is only as good if people know how to cook and have access to the ingredients. When all three are able to come together, truly amazing things happen that change the course of history.

Agriculture Revolution (10,000 B.C.)

Nearly 10,000 years ago, the innovation of farming and domestication of plants led to the first known revolution in human history. Although we previously lived as hunters and gatherers, the Agricultural Revolution gave birth to a new era of food production and efficiency. This fundamental understanding of new farming methods gave millions of new people access to healthier lifestyles.

  1. Innovation: Domestication of Plants
  2. Understanding: Farming Methods
  3. Accessibility: Food and Health

 

Industrial Revolution (1760’s)

With the innovation of the steam engine, the industrial revolution in England quickly set forward a worldwide adoption of factories and production. Machines were produced at a staggering rate that prompted new ideas of creation and engineering.

  1. Innovation: Steam Engine
  2. Understanding: Production Techniques
  3. Accessibility: Goods and Tools

 

Informational Revolution (1950’s)

While it’s hard for some to remember life before the internet, this innovation has accelerated the spread of information at an astronomical pace. With the ability to connect, interact, and communicate with anyone across the world, the internet at its core is a transfer of information.

  1. Innovation: Internet Protocol
  2. Understanding: Computer Navigation
  3. Accessibility: Information and Connection

 

Economical Revolution (2018)

Moving into 2018, we are headed into stage two of the Economical Revolution and Ethos is leading the way.

Ethos is a people-powered crypto currency platform. The mission is to make the daunting cryptocurrency market accessible to everyone, accelerate adoption of blockchain technology and democratize ownership of cryptocurrencies.

The technology making all this possible is already here: blockchain. However, the blockchain is still a mystery box to most. To help make sense of this technology, Ethos has made important connections along the way including a recent partnership with BitDegree that will pave the way to an introductory course on “Crypto and Cryptocurrencies”. As people begin to understand the core concepts and opportunity of crypto currency, Ethos can continue to build on the final and most important step: Accessibility.

The Ethos Universal Wallet makes it easy and safe to store and transfer value of any form – anywhere, anytime, anyplace, instantly – for free. In a new world of confusing tech, this innovation will bridge the gap between technical experts and average daily users.

  1. Innovation: Blockchain Technology
  2. Understanding: Crypto Currency
  3. Accessibility: Financial Freedom

Conclusion

The modern combustion engine was created in 1859, but it was not until Henry Ford’s invention of the Model T in 1908 did people truly have access to cars and transportation. The internet was invented in the mid 1900’s, but it was not until Steve Jobs and Bill Gates paved the way for personal computers did people truly have access to information. Blockchain needs a pioneer to bring the blockchain technology to the masses; Shingo Lavine and the Ethos team are doing just that.

The future is for everyone.

Bloom: Universal, Decentralized Credit Scoring

By | Analysis, Blast

Quick Summary

In short, Bloom is a universal, decentralized credit score system. Acting as an end-to-end protocol for identity attestation, risk assessment and credit scoring, entirely on the blockchain, they are able to help traditional and digital currency lenders to serve billions of people who currently cannot obtain a bank account or credit score. Let’s break this down a bit.

Industry

I think this company has flown under the radar because it isn’t in a sexy industry. Not everyone sits down at dinner with friends and immediately discuss how they can better their credit score. But if you truly think about it, our current credit system is incredibly broken. Here are a few examples how:

  • Restricted: If I travel to another country, let’s say Mexico just a few miles south, my entire life’s credit score doesn’t follow me. In the world of crypto that aspires to become a truly universal currency, the current credit scoring system just doesn’t work cross-borders.
  • Centralized: If you didn’t hear about the Equifax hack a few months ago, it was big. Millions of people’s personal information was compromised that could lead to identify theft and loss of assets. There is currently a monopoly on the industry from three major credit scoring systems with all our information. This isn’t safe.
  • Scoring: I didn’t truly start building credit until I was 23 years old. Even though I never missed a payment on anything. Even though I did everything in my power to stay away from having debt, I was penalized for not having debt. How backwards is this?

Technology

These issues are true for millions across the world. To counter these problems, here are the three things Bloom is doing to fix the issues:

  1. BloomID: BloomID lets users establish a global, federated identity with independent third parties who publicly vouch for their identity information and legal status.
  2. BloomIQ: BloomIQ is a system for reporting and tracking current and historical debt obligations that are tied to a user’s BloomID.
  3. BloomScore: BloomScore is a dynamic and inclusive indicator of an individual’s likelihood to pay debts that adapts to the maturity of a user’s credit history.

Investing

Full disclaimer, I participated in the ICO so I could be somewhat biased on my positions here. That being said, I believe this is truly under the radar coin. Here are some interesting stats I found thanks to their reddit channel.

  • Bloom’s 24 Hour Trading Volume is 101 ETH ($131,249 USD). This is the highest daily trading volume yet.
  • Despite the ups and downs of the market, Bloom has held strong and kept up the pace of Ethereum.
  • At the time of writing, buy orders are at $1.76 USD. The ICO opened at $0.67. The ending of the ICO was $1.15.

While Bloom is on CoinMarketCap.com, it has not been publicly listed on the “Recently Added” yet. I think this is an extremely sneaky coin to get before it hits the big markets.

Hold Time: 6+ Months

 

BloomToken (BLT)

About: Universal, Decentralized Credit Scoring

Exchanges:

https://idex.market/eth/blt

https://forkdelta.github.io/#BLT-ETH

 

Website: https://hellobloom.io

Substratum: Net Neutrality’s Backup Ninja

By | Analysis, Blast

Investing Analysis

Okay, I’ll say it: Substratum is still my favorite coin of 2018. One of those visions that make you think, “Man, if they can actually pull this off, it is going to change the world”.  While I have been a fan of Substratum for months, we just experienced a perfect storm of opportunity that makes this a crucial time to invest. Here are the three reasons:

1) Crypto Correction

The last few days has caused mass hysteria around the crypto community, mainly by new investors who have never seen a correction. While nobody likes to see their portfolio value cut in half, these types of corrections do offer new opportunity to re-evaluate your positions, and pick up coins at a lower price than you were previously able to.

Before the correction, SUB made its way all the way up to $3.21, an absolutely insane growth rate since starting the year at $1.08. However, after the correction, SUB has dropped down and his hovering around the $1.25-$1.50 range. A perfect opportunity to snag.

2) Beta Release

When other coins get so much hype despite having an actual product out, I usually roll my eyes a bit. It’s like that little kid at recess who claims to be the best basketball player you’ve ever seen, but you have yet to see him get on the court yet. Seeing 10B+ market caps without a working product is always a red flag. To make me feel a little better about Substratum and their work so far, Justin Tabb and the team do an awesome job of making videos to learn about the concerns; about the product; and about the vision moving forward.

While they have not released the public product just yet, they are currently doing private beta tests. If you would like to be involved with these tests, you can fill out this form to get an early peek at at the action. It is expected that the public beta will be released in the coming weeks. Once this hits, the ease of use in running a node is set for mass adoption at an incredible rate.

3) TV Rumors

I usually don’t like to pump up unconfirmed buzz before it is made official, but this information is just too juicy to pass up. According to a screenshot from the founder himself, Substratum will be showcased on a “major TV spot” with an estimated audience of 60M people. This is exciting news, not just for Substratum, but the entire crypto industry as a whole.

“Buy the rumors, sell the news.” A very common phrase in the crypto world, but what if the rumor is about being on the news?  As appreciation for your involvement with Altcoin Insider, I love the opportunity to break information like this to you. Hopefully you can jump on the train before this rumor spreads too far.

Technology

For those not from America, there is an ongoing nationwide debate involving the ability of Internet Service Providers to slow down and censor certain parts of the web. For many of those not from America, you may already be dealing with censored news outlets and information while online. No matter your location, we are all connected by the internet, and any intermediary that tries to take that away from us is slowing down society. To attempt to fix this issue, the United States passed Net Neutrality in 2015 that reclassified broadband access as a telecommunications service, thus applying common carrier protections under Title II of the Communications Act. However, in November of 2017, the FCC chairman Ajit Pai unveiled plans to repeal the United States’ net neutrality policy.

I sometimes like to think of Substratum as Net Neutrality’s Backup Ninja. Despite the attempts of the third parties to control our internet access, blockchain technology allows us to do is forgo intermediaries and create true decentralization. We control our own destiny, not Comcast.  Substratum is an open-source network that allows anyone to allocate spare computing resources to make the internet a free and fair place for the entire world. Anyone, at anytime, can become a node on the network and begin helping the internet to true decentralization. Oh, and you also get paid for this. Crazy, I know.

The only thing that excites more more about getting paid to help others, is the ease of use Substratum has created. Its awesome to have the best technology in the world, but if nobody knows how to use it, what is the point? Currently, ‘mining’ for crypto seems to be an elite underground society where only the technical people are rewarded. Substratum changes all that, checkout how easy it is to use.

 

Much like Ether being necessary to access the power of Ethereum’s blockchain platform, Substrate will be a necessity for all the companies who want host their website on the power of the decentralized web. For companies to host their websites on this uncensored internet, they must pay using Substrate, the SUB token. Many other crypto companies have no real use for their coins/tokens. Substratum does.

Timeline

February 2017
  • Substratum Founded
  • Roll out MVP
    Introduce the Company
July 2017
  • Website V1 Launched
  • Whitepaper Launched
 August 2017
  • ICO Token Sale
  • Raised over $12MM USD
  • Website V2 Launched
September 2017
  • SUB Tokens Hits the Exchanges
  • Substratum lists on Coss.io, Tidex, and Etherdelta
October 2017
  • SUB Lists on Binance
  • Ohio Office Established
November 2017
  • SUB Lists on KuCoin
  • Private Alpha Test I
  • Completes with 100% successful results globally
 December 2017
  • Website V3 Launched
  • Private Alpha Test II

Q1 2018

  • Public Beta Launch

Conclusion

I usually don’t put my neck out behind a company so much. There are so many uncontrollable factors that lead to the success or failure of a company. When I look back at the history of companies who eventually become giants, the one thing that stood out to me most was timing. Google came in a time when the internet needed organizing. Now, the internet needs to be disorganized, and a decentralized foundation is the only way to accomplish that. If, and it is a big if, the team can execute on their vision in the coming months, Substratum is set for a massive disruption.

 

My name is Zachary Dash, the founder of Altcoin Atlas. Every day, I write one article that features an up-and-coming altcoin to keep your eye on. If you want to support me and the information I put out, I encourage you to join our Altcoin Insider group. The Altcoin Insider is a daily dose of crypto sent directly to your phone. On here, we feature investing analysis on up-and-coming coins to keep your eye on. Text ‘ALTCOIN’ to 31996 to get involved or visit Altcoin Insider for international support.

Opus: Decentralized Spotify Brings Power Back to the Artists

By | Analysis, Blast

Overview

In a society built on music platforms like Spotify and iTunes, it is extremely hard for low & mid-level artists to make a living. Attempting to promote your music without going through these outlets is an uphill battle of marketing expenses and promotional expertise. Even if you are talented enough to make it big, these third party platforms sit as middle-man between you and your fans who want to support you. Opus is attempting to fix this by giving artists 100% of all revenue.

Investing Analysis

I was debating whether or not to add this coin to Altcoin Insider, as it was already mentioned on the Top 10 Altcoins of 2018 post I did a few weeks ago. That being said, after the recent dip in the crypto market brought the coin back down to $0.10, I still think this coin is incredibly undervalued.

OPT was sitting at $0.04 for a long time but went all the way up to $0.25 just five days ago. Despite the surge, I never once debated selling off for profits. This coin has just too much potential. If Opus is able to get just ONE major advisor or musical artist on-board, I find it hard to believe this coin will be worth anything less than $1-3. These are the type odds I like to play with.

With just 250M coins in existence, a simple $250 purchase right now could have you owning 1% of the entire market. That is huge. Most of my investments sit into two categories: Coins with stability and coins with upside. Opus definitely sits in the upside portion of my portfolio.

Music is a universal language that binds us all together. If Opus can connect this universal language with the universal currency of crypto, we are looking at huge numbers moving through 2018.

Technology

Opus is the world’s first decentralised music platform built on Ethereum and IPFS. While they are working on releasing the first platform in the coming months, they already have a pretty snazzy looking demo at: https://opus-foundation.org/demo/demo.html. Make sure to turn down your speakers, as it auto-plays with music.

Team

The COO and investor Mateusz Mach is a Forbes 30 Under 30 Winner. That’s a pretty good start for a team. You can view the rest of the Opus team by going: Here

 

Opus (OPT)

About: Decentralized Spotify Brings Power Back to the Artists

Exchanges: HitBTC, EtherDelta

Website: https://opus-foundation.org/

UTRUST (UTK) – PayPal of the Blockchain

By | Analysis, Blast

Wish I would have started this Altcoin Insider group just a few days ago before UTRUST really took off. I have been watching UTK ever since the ICO and invested around $0.57. While it is now up to $1.08 (#102), I truly see this company making it’s way into the top 50 coins in the not too distant future (1-3 Months).

In my Top 10 Coins of 2018 post, I wrote about a company called Verify (CRED) that is doing very well. While I still like Verify from an investment perspective, UTRUST is attacking the same problem with a team that is 10x the size and 10x the funding. They have a jump-start on the market, which is a huge advantage in today’s industry.

So what makes it special? It is solving a real problem; go figure. In today’s eCommerce industry, not only are crypto payments hard to accept because of volatility, but they are on untested waters. Asking someone to send you some Ether for your Nike shoes is almost as strange as asking for hotdogs at McDonalds. It just doesn’t work.

In 1998, sending money over the Internet seemed crazy, let alone doing it without a credit card. Fighting against fear and uncertainty, PayPal was able to overcome the most important and restricting barrier of all: trust. It was not the technology behind PayPay that made it into the behemoth it is today. It was the trust and level of comfort it gave people in doing something they had never done before.

To solve this same problem in the cryptosphere, UTRUST acts as a middle-man between buyer and seller to ensure a trusting transaction. The type that gives you the warm & fuzzies when you go to bed at night that your package will arrive; and even if it doesn’t, you have someone to talk to about it.

 

Yes, the point of the blockchain is to cut out middle-men. Yes, we are gradually building to that end goal. But until that time comes when robots can track down fraudulent sellers/buyers, we need a level of protection to bridge the gap between blockchain and eCommerce. UTRUST does just that. On the small chance UTRUST is the PayPal of the Blockchain, it’s worth the investment.

UTRUST (UTK) – $1.09 (3.04%)

About: PayPal of the blockchain, UTRUST is the payments platform of the future.

Industry: eCommerce

Exchanges: KuCoin, EtherDelta (Beware of Hacks)

Website: https://utrust.io