Urvashi Verma

Big Pharma & Tech Use Blockchain to Prevent Prescription Drug Death

Intel and Johnson & Johnson will test a simulated version of a Blockchain platform designed to track prescription drugs across the supply chain
Big Pharma & Tech Use Blockchain to Prevent Prescription Drug Death

Tech giants Intel and Johnson & Johnson will test a simulated version of a Blockchain platform designed to track prescription drugs across the supply chain.

The goal of the project is to bring pharmaceutical industry into compliance with Drug Supply Chain Security Act and ensure the safe availability of prescription drugs to consumers.

The system is designed to track drugs from their point of manufacture to final distribution with the aim of removing potentially dangerous drugs from reaching US consumers, experts say.

The manufacturing and distribution of fake or substandard medications is a $30 bln problem and causes 200,000 deaths each year globally, according to a recent report by the World Health Organization.

David Houlding, the director of healthcare privacy and security at Intel Health and Life Sciences, told Bloomberg:

“The ultimate goal is for all drug-related companies and their suppliers worldwide to be on the Blockchain, an online ledger that can’t be erased. Then government agencies such as the Food and Drug Administration could potentially plug into the Blockchain and provide oversight.”

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The project aims to bring pharmaceutical firms into compliance with the Drug Supply Chain Security Act, passed in 2013 which outlines steps to build an electronic, interoperable system to identify and trace prescription drugs as they are distributed in the US.

The Food and Drug Administration said in a statement:

“This (Drug Supply Chain Security Act)  will enhance FDA’s ability to help protect consumers from exposure to drugs that may be counterfeit, stolen, contaminated or otherwise harmful. The system will also improve detection and removal of potentially dangerous drugs from the drug supply chain to protect US consumers.”

Testing will commence this spring when Johnson & Johnson, McKesson Corp., and other companies will enter simulated data into digital ledgers. Based on results, a pilot could be launched by the end of this year.

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Coins Guide George Shnurenko

How to mine Vertcoin (VTC) for Free

🎓 Coins Guide
The simplicity of Vertcoin mining is pleasantly added by secure using of network and easy transactions processes.
How to mine Vertcoin (VTC) for Free

The simplicity of Vertcoin mining is pleasantly added by secure using of network and easy transactions processes. Everyone can mine these digital coins with GPUs. We won’t dive in details here – all you need along with PC with GPU is Vertcoin wallet (you should download it) and miner program. The NVidia 10 Series cards are currently the best GPUs for Vertcoin mining. But we still go on working at making AMD cards more profitable for using.

Here if the list of some resources providing Vertcoin mining:

  • sgminer (AMD): https://github.com/nicehash/sgminer/releases
  • Ccminer (Nvidia): https://github.com/tpruvot/ccminer/releases
  • VertMiner: (coming soon!)

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Darryn Pollock

The Speculative Price of BTC and ETH is Down, But the Fundamentals of the Coins are Just Fine

Just looking at the price of Bitcoin can cause panic, but there are far better metrics for measuring the health of a cryptocurrency
The Speculative Price of BTC and ETH is Down, But the Fundamentals of the Coins are Just Fine

Between the CNBC headlines and the red graphs, as well as the fake picture of BTC miners being dumped, it has been a scary time for cryptocurrency enthusiasts. The fall in the BTC price from the $6,000-ish mark in November to now has caused may to worry about the health and prospects of the bigger cryptocurrencies.

However, the price is just one metric that determines just how well the market and certain coins are doing. Moreso, the price of the cryptocurrency is also the most speculative market metric on which to measure it upon.

There are many different things to consider before basing your sole assumption on the price of a cryptocurrency, and Chris Burniske, a partner at Placeholder and well known cryptocurrency voice, explains that the fundamentals of cryptocurrencies are still showing good signs.

Supply-siders and demand-siders

Burniske, in a post on Medium, explains how he views the health of a cryptocurrency by looking at its fundamentals, and this includes deciphering what is happening with the supply-siders and demand-siders.

“Supply-siders are the folks who provision the network’s service (currently, the most common form of supply-sider is a miner), and demand-siders are the ones who consume the service,” he said.”

“In terms of demand-side and supply-side fundamentals, here are the simple ones I’ll showcase:

Bitcoin Demand-Side: Number of Daily Transactions (#), Estimated Daily Transaction Value (USD), Daily Unique Addresses Used (#). Ethereum Demand-Side: Number of Daily Transactions (#), Total Daily Gas Used. Bitcoin & Ethereum Supply-Side: Hash Rate.’”

He also goes on to determine the network value, rather than using its price per coin, and this is equated thusly: “Network Value” = “Price per Unit” x “Units of the Cryptoasset Outstanding,” according to Burniske.

Supply-siders and demand-siders

Burniske uses the above graphs to show that the while the network value of both ETH and BTC is slowly sliding, the the number of daily transactions is stable to ticking up.

From the peak, Bitcoin and Ethereum’s network values are down 81% and 93%, respectively, whereas daily number of transactions are only down 41% and 52%, respectively.

What he derives from this data is that the drawdown in the network value is actually far less than the drop in the price of both these coins.

On the supply side

Burniske goes on to look at data on the supply side, viewing the hash rates of both blockchains.

On the supply side

“Both Bitcoin and Ethereum’s hash rates are higher now than they were at both of their peaks. Yes, hash rate is (usually) a lagging indicator that follows price, and both Bitcoin’s and Ethereum’s hash rates are on negative slopes which require us to keep a close eye on them. But right now, this fundamental is outperforming price,” he explains

What Burniske is trying to show with this data and its analysis is that, while there is a down turn in the markets, the effects of such are not as strong as the percentage drop in price. The way in which the blockchains are functioning in terms of their supply-siders and demand-siders seems to indicate that the health of the blockchains are still much better than their price.

The speculative nature of cryptocurrencies has always seen it swing wildly, Bit price booms are followed by massive price drops. And although both these assets have lots over 80 percent of their value since their all time highs, that percentage loss is not accurately reflected if you consider their fundamental performance metrics.

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Alex Morris

The 10 Best Places to Learn How to Invest in Cryptocurrency

U.Today has discovered the best ways to learn about cryptocurrency investment, and some of them might be surprising. From blogs to Wikipedia — we've covered it all!
The 10 Best Places to Learn How to Invest in Cryptocurrency
Contents

So, you’ve been hearing about Bitcoin the whole year but you were still reluctant to jump on board. Maybe you found out about the currency last week? In any case, it doesn’t matter. If you weren’t (at least) emotionally invested in this subject before, there is a good chance your knowledge is very superficial, and there are plenty of things that have to be cleared up while you are learning how to invest in cryptocurrency.

Is Bitcoin a Ponzi scheme? Why is Bitcoin so expensive, and does it have any value at all? How do you invest in cryptocurrency? If you ever asked one of these questions, you are already in the ‘intrigue’ phase of cryptocurrency investment, and in order to further success with cryptocurrency investment, you need entry-level guidance.     

By having access to the resources that are mentioned in this list, you will be able to significantly speed up your learning curve.  

Reddit

Reddit has always been a rallying force that unites crypto enthusiasts throughout the world. According to Alexa, it is supposed to be the third biggest website in the world, trumping many social media giants. In order to start investing in cryptocurrency, you might consider checking many crypto-related subreddits. In fact, even some minor coins have their own vibrant communities on Reddit. Case in point: r/dogecoin, which has almost more than 127,000 subscribers.

Reddit

(Source: coindiary.net)

Before divining into any specific coin, you may want to check some general subreddits, with r/CryptoCurrency being the most popular crypto-oriented sub (more than 755,000 subscribers). The community is huge, but it might be overwhelming for new users, and it has many trashy posts. If you couldn’t find your cryptocurrency investment advice here, check out r/CryptoMarkets — a smaller subreddit with a knack for in-depth market analysis.

In order to realize why would you want to invest in a certain coin, you have to do profound research on the technology that underpins a certain coin. /r/CryptoTechnology is a perfect option for those who want to stay away from stale memes, fully focusing on the technical details (this subreddit only allows text posts).

Twitter influencers

Twitter is yet another contender for the top place to learn about cryptocurrency investments. You can get a real sense of the nascent industry by following the accounts of many influential personalities in the crypto space. On top of that, Twitter is generally considered to be the best source of breaking news. Keeping your fingers on the pulse of the constantly developing industry is vital for becoming a successful investor.  

Some of the biggest names that definitely should appear on your Twitter feed include:

Twitter influencers

Of course, while stepping into the wilderness of crypto Twitter, you should keep in mind that there is a lot of FUD and disinformation.  

Telegram channels

Telegram, the ubiquitous encrypted messenger rolled out by Pavel Durov, turned out to a major hub for crypto enthusiasts. Those who want to start investing in cryptocurrencies have to choose their strategy (from long-term holding to day trading). Anyway, it is always worth knowing what is hot in the world of crypto with the help of crypto trading signal channels — they are able to predict the price movements of certain altcoins with different accuracy. Crypto Addict is known to be one the most salient examples of such channels (they offer fairly accurate altcoins signals and even ongoing coin reviews).

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Apart from that, there are communities for all types of holders, traders, investors (whatever your niche in the crypto space is). You can get the freshest news about the coin you are holding as well as engage in discussions with other like-minded individuals. Here are some of the most popular crypto-related Telegram channels:

Name of the channel

Number of subscribers

DeCenter

75,100

Cointelegraph

53,700

ForkLog

44,000

News.Bitcoin.com

33,100

Penthouse

26,900

Cryptocurrency news aggregators and tools for analysis

To keeps tabs on everything that is going on in the world of crypto, consider following some of the most popular crypto-oriented news aggregators (including cryptopanic.com, coinspectator.com, etc.).

There is also a Blockchain calendar for all upcoming events — coinmarketcal.com. All the upcoming initial coin offerings will remain under your radar with icotracker.net.     

CoinMarketCap and TradingView are among the must-have websites every crypto trader should know about. These are perfect places for performing an in-depth analysis of cryptocurrency assets before making an investment decision.

Top crypto channels on YouTube

The world’s leading streaming service offers a lot of content on how to buy and sell cryptocurrencies (these videos even cover such far-fetched topics as building your own Blockchain!). Simply search the respective keyword, and you will find a myriad of related videos — a boon for those who want to learn how to buy cryptocurrency.

At the same time, there are top-quality channels with an already established community of crypto evangelists. Andreas Antonopoulos is one of the most prominent Blockchain experts in the crypto space whose opinion definitely matters to anyone who is making their steps in the world of crypto. In 2014, he rose to prominence after publishing his groundbreaking book ‘Understanding Bitcoin’.

Decentralized TV is a channel where a seasoned crypto expert covers the latest cryptocurrency news. Peter Saddington is the name of its famed host who bought a Lamborghini with crypto and also made numerous appearances on CNBC.  

Lastly, David Hay is a good choice if you are looking for a detailed analysis of most popular cryptocurrencies on the market that might end up in your in your investment portfolio.

Top crypto channels on YouTube

Popular cryptocurrency exchanges  

Once you’ve learned the basics of cryptocurrency investment and picked up the coin you want to put your money into, it’s time for some action with actual cryptocurrency investment sites.

Coinbase, an $8 bln exchange, is leading the way as one of the most popular exchanges on the planet. In its FAQ section, you can find the answer to any question pertaining to cryptocurrency investment. It also has top-notch customer support.

Popular cryptocurrency exchanges  

The list of other popular beginner-level exchanges where you can invest in cryptocurrency includes Kraken, Binance, Coinmama and more.

Online courses

Both Udemy and Coursera already have excellent courses for different levels of crypto enthusiasts, but you will have to shell out a dollar or two in order to get access to them.

Those who are already familiar with Coursera (and many similar services) should definitely check out their courses that are specifically devoted to cryptocurrencies. It’s a very convenient and entertaining way to learn more about the nascent asset class. All courses are designed by lecturers from top universities. It's the perfect icebreaker for those who don't know how to invest in cryptocurrencies.

On Udemy, Suppoman teaches more than 29 crypto-related courses for more than 270k of participants (and the price is rather competitive — only $12 per course).     

Bitcoin Wiki

For any kind of crypto-related content, you can also consult Bitcoin Wiki, which contains more than 1,150 pages of crypto-related content that pertain to exchanges, mining, and other issues that might be interesting for a run-of-the-mill cryptocurrency investor. The actual Wikipedia can also be quite informative. Ironically, the creator of the Bitcoin Wikipedia page never himself invested in any cryptocurrencies, but he certainly knows a great deal about how to invest in digital assets.

If you are a complete newbie who feels overwhelmed by a plethora of technical terms, it would be a good option to visit the Simple Wikipedia page. Here, everything is explained in a very straightforward manner, and numerous crypto-related articles are available in several languages.

Crypto-related forums and the blogosphere

Medium and Steemit both have a large crypto community. One can find information on practically any interesting topic here. Medium is a platform that allows startups to engage with their community, making certain official announcements.

Crypto-related forums and the blogosphere

Meanwhile, every Bitcoin investor definitely knows about the existence of bitcointalk.org, the legendary forum that probably represents the biggest community in the world with many members who jumped on the Bitcoin bandwagon early, but it constantly welcomes new investors. As of now, the ‘Bitcoin Discussion’ section alone features more than 2 mln posts, while the ‘Mining’ section also surpassed the 1 mln mark. With such a gargantuan amount of information, it won't be difficult to determine the best way to invest in cryptocurrency.

Mindset Training

While diving deep into the world of crypto, one should remember that the success of your investing (especially when it comes to day traders) largely depends on your ability to pull yourself together and control your emotions. Whether you are a beginner crypto investor or a full-time trader, it’s a good option to program your mind for success. "The Obstacle Is The Way" by Ryan Holiday is a good way to help you help you physiologically prepare for crypto trading. Part of this Udemy course also focuses on developing your trading mindset.

Conclusion  

Becoming a cryptocurrency investor from a scratch may not seem like an easy feat. However, our top 10 places to learn how to trade cryptocurrency, which includes the industry biggest influencers as well as the most vibrant cryptocurrency communities on the web, will certainly alleviate the task.

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Darryn Pollock

The Evolution of Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Usage: Normalizing and Innovating

Cryptocurrencies are inherently a currency, but there is far more uses being created every day for this disruptive tech
The Evolution of Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Usage: Normalizing and Innovating

There is no doubt that the first cryptocurrencies were created to be a digital cash, but from those humble beginnings there has sprouted a massive ecosystem that continues to innovate as well as normalize.

Cryptocurrencies and Blockchain technology have an incredibly broad spectrum of application that is still being discovered and explored today. The usage of the Blockchain is expanding into traditional sectors, and the technology is being eagerly looked into by banks, governments and corporations.

Cryptocurrencies too are becoming more normalized and useful. They are no longer just a tool of the dark web and in fact are becoming more and more like traditional assets with the creation of Futures contracts, potentially ETFs, and even as collateral for loans.

Blockchain’s advances

The key technology for cryptocurrencies is at a stage where many different sectors believe they can innovate and advance their areas of ecpe rise by implementing Blockchain technology. From supply chain to cloud computing, the scope of this technology is almost endless.

Many different Blockchain companies have seen the possibility of Blockchain in creating a decentralized cloud storage network. This is the premise of Golem, but there are others that are trying to innovate this space and sirupt the well known and centralized models.

Pavel Bains, CEO of Bluzelle explains:

“The easiest thing to forget is there’s a massive amount of data being consumed by all applications and products. With all this data being exchanged, the current Internet just doesn’t have the infrastructure to protect its security, scalability and reliability.”

It is clear that for this type of technology, necessity is pushing innovation. Security of data and the current internet infrastructure is in need of an upgrade, and this is where the Blockchain can step in.

In a similar vein, but slightly differently, cryptocurrencies are also infiltrating financial sectors, but their mandate seems to be more about becoming normalised than total disruption.

From spending on the Dark web to securing a loan

Cryptocurrencies began their life as a coin on the Internet, and especially a coin if the Dark web. They are inherently a spending token that derives value from a small, but growing market.

However, their evolution and expansion into the mainstream is continually evolving, and it is this evolution that is being spurred on by normalizing the digital asset, as well as finding more functions for them.

Can Gulec, of cryptocurrency lending platform Kambo, explains how by offering traditional lending services, but based on crypto assets, can aid in normalizing the digital currency economy.

“We want to facilitate adoption. We believe traditional financial systems and disruptive fintech systems should be integrated and seamlessly connected. There needs to be a bond between alternative assets classes - like cryptocurrencies - and traditional financial institutions - banks and lending institutions. Through this, not only we are enabling people to unlock the value of their holdings, but also allowing more complex products to be built.”

Challenges to cryptocurrency evolution

A lot of the problem with trying to fuel the adoption of cryptocurrency, and to get people to understand it as an alternative currency, has to do with understanding its value. Bitcoin has been labelled many times as inherently valueless, but that notion alone is a tricky one.

“Value is a very tricky notion to define and has been a critical attack point for crypto-sceptics,” Gulec goes on to explain. “People have used anything from massive rocks to cowry shells as a store of value.”

“Everything - gold, precious rocks, fiat currency - is valueless if you take human consensus out of the equation. As more complex tools are built around an ecosystem, its foundation becomes stronger and its chance of standing against the test of time increases. So, in our case, the ability to take loans against crypto assets makes them a much more interesting asset class, because then one can unlock their value by leveraging against them and using them like any other liquid financial asset.”

Cryptocurrency adoption has slowed recently, especially as the hype and buzz around its growing price has cooled. There now needs to be a second wave of adoption, and that will only really come when people can see cryptocurrencies in the same light as any other asset or mode of exchange.

The more people are normalized to cryptocurrencies, the easier they will be to pick up and use. The evolution on this space is very dependant on innovation in one instance, but that innovation needs to be bridged with the traditional to bring people across.

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Wikicoin Darryn Pollock

WikiCoin: NEO

📚 Wikicoin
NEO is so similar to the number two cryptocurrency that it’s been called the “Chinese Ethereum.” But NEO is perhaps even more ambitious than Ethereum.
WikiCoin: NEO

NEO has taken aim at one of the biggest and most useful of all cryptocurrencies: Ethereum. NEO aims to use the power of the Blockchain, as well as digital identity, to digitize assets.

While many coins are out there trying to improve on Bitcoin, NEO is trying to improve on Ethereum and make advances in the world of smart contracts. NEO differs from Ethereum in that it is not using its smart contracts as a platform for development. Rather it wants to realize a ‘smart economy’ within a distributed network.

From Antshares to the moon

NEO is still heavily in development, having recently been rebranded from Antshare in June 2017. This name change, along with aggressive marketing, has helped it secure a position in the top 10 cryptocurrencies by market capitalization. The smart economy NEO aims to develop, involving the digitalizing of assets and will involve proof of ownership. The Chinese government is even looking at NEO to establish its pre-eminence on the Blockchain and be a leader in the space.

NEO has exactly 100 mln tokens, and all of these tokens were created in the genesis block and then distributed according to a mechanism outlined in the NEO white paper. Unlike most cryptocurrencies which are infinitely divisible, NEO tokens cannot be divided and thus the smallest possible transaction size is one NEO.

Well regarded

NEO’s founder, who founded the coin under the name Antshares, is Da Hongfei. He is well respected in Asia as a cryptocurrency pioneer, and apart from founding NEO, he is also the founder and CEO of Onchain, a Blockchain development company for enterprise and institutions.

A boom in NEO

While Antshares was launched in 2014, it didn’t really begin to gain prominence until after the rebranding. Beginning June 16 last year, the coin started to rise, hitting its first peak at $9.75, it continued to spike to $47.58 in the middle of August before dropping away like many coins to the end of the year.

However, since that low, NEO has been one of the better performing cryptocurrencies through January, hitting a recent all-time high on Jan. 30 of $162.

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