Episode 3.00 // Could PayPal be the tipping point?

PayPal is the global leader in payments. Early in 2021 they’ll offer Bitcoin to their nearly half billion users, changing how we think of money. Are we ‘crossing the Rubicon’ into a time when cryptocurrencies are used and traded by people everywhere? We put the question to INDX.CAPITAL CEO Jonathan DeCarteret and Guardian Circle CEO Mark Jeffrey.

Here’s the Reserve Bank of Australia’s press release from 2 November 2020 about partnering with CBA, NAB, Perpetual and ConsenSys to create a wholesale (for use only by banks) digital currency.

A report from Reuters on 21 October 2020 about PayPal adopting four cryptocurrencies.

On the day this episode went to air, Dan Schulman, CEO of PayPal said Central Bank Digital Currencies are ‘inevitable‘.

We’ll cover China’s Digital Currency / Electronic Payments (or DCEP) in our next episode. Lots more links when that one comes out.

Episode 2.06 // BALANCE OF POWER

Congress strangles Libra in the crib, but Zuck’s secret weapon may be fear of the Chinese digital yuan. Geopolitics — and our expert panel with Mark Jeffrey and Robert Tercek!

Some interesting links:

The South China Morning Post on China’s blockchain plans – and why the US shouldn’t seek to thwart them…
Asia Times on Turkey’s forthcoming ‘digital lira’ – because why not?
Dovey Wan’s Twitter feed has lots of information about new crypto laws in China….

Episode 2.02 // FOLLOW THE MONEY

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) just made it harder to fund terrorists with cryptocurrencies – and made it safer for banks to trade them, changing the cryptocurrency business forever.

Roger Wilkins AO is a former president of the FATF.
Senior Policy Analyst at the FATF, Tom Neylan, worked with a team to develop recommendations (here’s a PDF of the full recommendation) that will make cryptocurrencies safer to exchange.

Episode 2.01 // SIGN OF THE TIMES

Facebook’s Libra could be the most important cryptocurrency ever. Is Libra the real deal – and what does it mean for the future of money? We ask crypto expert Samuel Brooks of Block.8 what Libra means – and how it might be used.

A few useful links:

Here’s Facebook’s white paper on Libra;
Wikipedia on M-PESA, mobile money that transformed Kenya;
And a bit more about Block.8 and Samuel Brooks.

Ten Billiion Zimbabwe Dollar note
And this is what ten billion dollars look like. Am I rich? No. Not really.

Episode 12 – HIGH FINANCE & LOW FRAUDS

Mark Jeffrey and Rob Tercek join Mark to discuss the JPMCoin, Facebook’s crypto play, the collapse of QuadrigaCX – and are 95% of Bitcoins trades bogus?

Topics: JPMorgan Coin; Facebook might earn $20B from Crypto; Jack Dorsey dedicates efforts to open-source crypto development; report submitted to SEC on fraudulent Bitcoin trading; Ethereum Classic suffers a 51% attack; the QuadrigaCX drama – and more!

Robert Tercek and Mark Jeffrey in the PodcastOne studios in Beverly Hills.

The awesome Mark Jeffrey has a new series – “Crypto Explained Simply” that’s designed to teach you all about cryptocurrency:

Mark Jeffrey’s new series ‘Crypto Explained Simply’

Episode 10 – THE SATOSHI DECADE

We conclude series one with a panel — four innovators discuss the incredible innovations flowing from Satoshi Nakamoto’s first white paper on Bitcoin, published ten years ago.

Our fantastic panelists:

Bridie Ohlsson, Blockchain Lead at AgriDigital.

Phil Shelper, CEO of Loyalty & Reward Company

Max Kenny, CEO of CryptoFlip (also featured on episode 5)

Dr. Philippa Ryan, UTS Faculty of Law

Plus our wonderful ‘drop-in guests’: Joe Lubin, Ron Tucker, Sheffield Clark, Mark Jeffrey, Hugo O’Connor and Chami Akmeemana.

And here’s the original Bitcoin white paper, from 31 October 2008:

Bitcoin – A Peer to Peer Electronic Cash System

After a great conversation, we lit candles on a birthday cake — for Bitcoin!

IMG_2106
Phil, Mark, Max, Bridie & Pip ready to blow out the candles!

This amazing event wouldn’t have been possible without heaps of assistance from Stone and Chalk (Laura Rowan, Olga Link & Annie Le Cavalier) and the Spark Festival – many thanks for their support.

This brings series one of CRYPTONOMICS to a close, and I won’t say producer Alex Mitchell and I are celebrating the successful conclusion of the production, but…

Episode 9 – JOE LUBIN, ETHEREUM & CONSENSYS

A live-to-audience interview with Joe Lubin, co-creator of Ethereum, and ‘godfather’ of the smart contract, tracing an arc from his college days at Princeton to founding ‘blockchain venture studio’ ConsenSys.

As Joe makes clear in our conversation, Ethereum is a process – not yet a product. Here’s the roadmap for Ethereum 2.0, which takes a lot of what’s been learned since the network went live in 2016 — and tries to fix its shortcomings.

Here’s a great interview with Vitalik Buterin – the other half of Ethereum’s founding team (Joe spreads the credit around more widely) about cryptoeconomics and more.

The “live” version of the Ethereum white paper, maintained on the Ethereum website – it’s an interesting read. Particularly when you remember that it was drafted by someone who was only eighteen years old at the time.

Huge thanks to both UTS and the City of Sydney’s Visiting Entrepreneur Program for their assistance in making this all happen!

 

Episode 8 – CRYPTOPIA

Fanatical belief in cryptocurrencies lead to the perfect becoming the enemy of the good. Michel Bauwens takes us on a tour of what’s good.

Rob Tercek sat through a day of rally-style promotion of cryptocurrencies in Puerto Rico in February 2018 – and came away with a few questions.  Here’s Max Keyser’s talk at that event, which Rob found particularly disturbing:

Michel Bauwens’ P2P Foundation has been working to promote social uses of blockchain technologies.

Here’s a P2P Foundation post about “10 blockchain projects to keep an eye on“, including: The Possible Project and ShareRing. (ShareRing is Australian, so we do our best to have them on CRYPTONOMICS in our next series!)

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s Level One Project promises to bring cryptocurrency and smartphone-based trading to the developing world.

Finally, the Regen Network, which sees in itself a complete rewriting of how we account for value in civilisation.

Episode 7 – GOOD BUYS

ICOs are risky investments – CRYPTONOMICS looks at how their pitches play on our wishes for a better world, to get us to part with our cash.

We heard about the Great Keppel Island ICO, and here’s the original press release I received on the 4th of September, 2018:

GREAT BARRIER REEF ISLAND CRYPTO TOKENISED

The Crypto Challenge Forum promises:

Blockchain and the Future of Humanity:
Economy. Environment. Ethics

Then we took a look at the white paper’s for two ICO’s we discussed back in Episode 4:

PowerLedger’s POWR token white paper: Power-Ledger-Whitepaper-v3

The Guardian Circle GUARDIUM token white paper: guardium_whitepaper_en-1.0.3

And if you want to have a peek at the Mark Pesce Token, go here

Episode 6 – FEDCOINS & STABLECOINS

Businesses risk big losses accepting cryptocurrency payments. Do we need a ‘stablecoin’ that holds its value – or government ‘fedcoins’?

 

Havven is an Australian startup creating a ‘stablecoin’ on the back of a very well-subscribed ICO, raising USD $30,000,000 (closer to AUD $40M). Those funds serve as the surety so that their currency can be exchanged dollar-for-dollar with USD.

kain_warwick

We spoke to Havven founder Kain Warwick about what it takes to create a stablecoin – and why people might want to use one.

Tether is the most well-known stablecoin. But it’s been devilishly hard to find an auditor willing to say Tether has an adequate store of USD:

https://www.coindesk.com/tether-review-claims-crypto-asset-fully-backed-theres-catch/

Ecuador had a wild ride into and then out of a ‘fedcoin’:

https://www.cnbc.com/2015/02/06/ecuador-becomes-the-first-country-to-roll-out-its-own-digital-durrency.html

https://cointelegraph.com/news/state-issued-digital-currencies-the-countries-which-adopted-rejected-or-researched-the-concept

But will stablecoins really work?  MIT Tech Review says ‘um…’

 

Episode 5 – SMART MONEY

Imagine a company with no employees, no managers, no board of directors. Imagine a company that ran as a piece of software guaranteeing a democracy of shareholders.

Distributed Autonomous Organsation, or DAO, promised this to its investors:

dao_voting

It didn’t quite go as planned.

We’ve learned a lot about securing computer programs in the nearly 25 years since Brendan Eich invented Javascript – a language now powering nearly every site on the Web.

We’ve invented ‘sandboxing‘ – your smartphone apps can’t steal data from one another, nor can the websites you visit.

Vitalik Buterin created a cryptocurrency with coding features built into the currency. Ethereum runs millions of programs, each in its own sandbox.

Enabling ‘smart money’ – money that can think for itself – Ethereum has proven among the most useful of all coins – and as a result is now worth more than any cryptocurrency other than Bitcoin.

EtherScripter is an amazing tool that lets you drag-and-drop the design of smart contracts. It draws heavily from the SCRATCH programming language used to teach children as young as 6 years old the essential skills of programming. So EtherScripter is easy to understand – and fun.

Here’s a simple EtherScripter smart contract that performs a coin flip:

Etherscript coin flip

Get your hands dirty with EtherScripter here!

As we learned in our interview with CryptoFlip‘s Max Kenny, there’s a lot more to doing a coin flip well – that is, with truly random results.

The DAO failed because of bugs – and hubris. Smart contract pioneers wanted to run before they’d learned to walk.

This WIRED article explores the failure of the DAO in detail.