The digital era

Your daily newsletter for October 30, 2018
Digitization
“We live in a digital world, but we're fairly analog creatures.”
- Omar Ahmad
Fellow readers, hope you had a great start to your week yesterday. Keep at it, for the week has only just begun! Today in history, the USSR detonated the "Tsar Bomba", a 57-megaton hydrogen bomb. It remains the largest bomb or explosive device ever detonated. 💣 Yikes!

In today's newsletter, we will be covering a blockchain-powered marketplace platform launched by Singapore Power Group, the UK government to update crypto tax guidance by early 2019 and cryptography startup Starkware's latest equity funding round.

Hope you enjoy today's newsletter, and don't forget to answer the polls down below too (It's about retail digital energy marketplaces today)! Happy reading! 📚
Red day
Relatively big loss seen in the crypto markets yesterday, considering how low volatility levels have been in recent days. BTC is down ~2.12% and is currently trading at ~$6,345. It continues to remain below its 21-day EMA line, for the eighth consecutive day. RSI has dropped from ~45 to ~39, indicating some downward momentum. If this downtrend is to continue, we will likely see BTC testing the ~$6,200 support levels that it has repeatedly defended successfully in recent months. 

Total market capitalization saw a drop from ~$209.9 billion to ~$203.7 billion and most cryptocurrencies are experiencing losses in the ~2-7% range. The gap between second and third largest cryptocurrency by total market capitalization, ETH and XRP, is now only at ~$2.3 billion. The difference in market share dominance has been notably reduced from 3 months ago. Then, ETH and XRP had a market share dominance of ~15.5% and ~6.5% respectively. Now, they are at ~10.0% and ~8.8% respectively. It's been a bumpy road for ETH. 😔

Digitizing marketplaces
The energy utilities provider of Singapore, Singapore Power Group, has launched a blockchain-powered marketplace platform for renewable energy certificates (RECs). 🤖

The platform enables organizations to trade the RECs that represent energy generated from renewable sources such as solar. ☀️ Whenever a REC is purchased, the chosen type of renewable energy is generated for them by producers. Several buyers and sellers have already signed up on the platform such as City Developments Limited (CDL), DBS Bank, Cleantech Solar Asia, LYS Energy Solutions and Katoen Natie Singapore. 🤝

According to the chief digital officer of Singapore Power Group, the blockchain marketplace platform will "enable companies to trade in renewable energy certificates conveniently, seamlessly and securely, helping them achieve greener business operations and meet their sustainability targets." 🙏🏻

Demand for privacy
StarkWare, the company that developed the zk-STARKS privacy feature used by cryptocurrencies like Zcash and Ethereum, has closed a $30 million equity funding round led by Paradigm and other major investors, in an effort to commercialize the technology due to the strong demand for it. 🤫

The proprietary technology compresses large amounts of data into smaller proofs called 'starks' and uses zero-knowledge proofs to make the information private. Starkware wants other public blockchains to utilize their technology to add privacy to their protocols. 🤯

The $30 million funding round also saw the likes of Intel Capital, Sequoia, Atomico, DCVC, Wing, ConsenSys, Coinbase Ventures, Multicoin Capital, Collaborative Fund, Scalar Capital and Semantic Ventures contributing, joining older backers like Pantera Capital, Floodgate and Naval Ravikant. 💰 Paradigm's co-founder, Matt Huang, was also onboarded StarkWare's board of directors in the process. 👍

Seeking guidance
The UK government's "Cryptoasset Taskforce" comprising of the Bank of England, the Financial Conduct Authority and HM Treasury, is working with HM Revenue and Customs "to consider tax issues raised by cryptoassets". (HM: Her Majesty's 👑) 

The taskforce recently released a report acknowledging that while "its immediate priority is to mitigate the risks associated with the current generation of cryptoassets", it recognizes that "applications of DLT have the potential to deliver significant benefits in both financial services and other sectors". 👍

As such, the taskforce will work closely with HM Revenue and Customs and provide them with the research necessary to create an updated tax treatment guidance on cryptoassets by early 2019. 😄

Other news
  • 9 Japanese banks that are part of the Japanese Banks' Payment Clearing Network consortium are teaming up to trial a blockchain-based inter-bank settlement system using Fujitsu technology. 💱
  • Privacy-focused cryptocurrency Zcash (ZEC) has successfully implemented its network hardfork, "Sapling". 👏
  • The cryptocurrency exchange, Bitstamp, has been acquired by aN investment firm based in Belgium called NXMH. 🤝
Poll of the Day
On a scale of 1-10 (10 being the most keen), how keen are you on using a retail digital marketplace for your energy needs? 😀
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And...do you feel that your current personal energy costs are too high at the moment? Do you think that our world running solely on renewable energy sources is a realistic goal? Share with me in the polls! 😆
What you said
"On a scale of 1-10 (10 being the most enjoyable), how much would you rate Marvel's latest "Venom" movie?"

The average vote was only a 5! This is surprising, I expected it to be somewhere in the region of 7-8. I personally felt the movie had cool CGI. I have always liked Venom as a character and was eager to finally catch him on the screen. 😄
"What did you like and not like about the movie?"

You guys said:

Liked the character and maybe could’ve had a bit better story, probably will be better once integrated into the marvel movie franchise though. - I thought the storyline was predictable, but I felt that they made up for that with the great CGI. Am also excited to see him get integrated! 🤪
Haven’t seen 😾 - You should! Think it's definitely worth a watch. 👍 But be sure to stay for the after credits scene 😉
I like marvel you know what your getting. I enjoyed it. - Agreed! They are usually decent. ☺️

"What is your favorite Marvel movie of all time?"

You guys said:

Iron man - A popular choice! 🤵
So far it’s infinity war since the story is really good - Hard to argue with this. It was miles apart from the other Avengers movies. 🤩
Dr Strange - One of the better Marvel movies for me! 🤟
The first iron Man film was my fave - That movie was groundbreaking in my opinion. Will never forget it. 😭

"Who is your favorite Marvel character? Why?"

You guys said:

Loki I like his outlook - *Spoiler alert! Some are speculating that he didn't actually die in the latest Avengers movie, because of how uncharacteristic he was when he attempted to stab Thanos. Loki is the God of Mischief, and he never attacks from the front or with his left hand as he is right handed. Just one of the many fan theories! 🤔
Punisher, daredevil or venom. Changes between them. - Those are hella cool characters. 😎
Tony Stark - we need someone like him.. elon is closest 🙂 - The real life Tony Stark! 🤵
Iron Man in so gonna be Tony stark when my crypto bags come in - Ayeeee. Cheers to that! 🍻💰

Thank you all for reading thus far! Catch you back here again tomorrow! 💙
See you tomorrow!
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