🕵️‍ ICO Watch Eric Eissler

Zeepin’s not Creepin’ It’s Ready to Go Live: Past-ICO Review

👁 ICO Watch
Tools for the creative industry to license, protect and share creative is about to go live at the end of August
Zeepin’s not Creepin’ It’s Ready to Go Live: Past-ICO Review

 

 

Zeepin is a decentralized Blockchain developed for the global creative industry and the decentralized sharing economy community. The Blockchain is designed to help global creative content creators with asset digitization and rights confirmation, ensure these digital assets, enable efficient transactions and crowd-funding of creative assets, help organizations and individuals improve innovation efficiency, and incubate a large number of self-governing for-profit creative organizations.

Financials

Zeepin had a one-day token sale on Jan. 18, where it was able to raise some $62 mln in one day. The cost of a token during the sale was $0.13 and half of all one bln tokens were made for sale on that day. The token entered the general trading market on Jan. 30 at $0.18 and has experienced several ups and downs since. The token price is currently on a downward trend and is at its all-time low price of $0.03. Its market cap has dissipated to $19 mln and daily trading volume is at $250,000. It could be said that the current bear, really big bear, market is weighing heavily on all token prices and there has been little relief from the ongoing price correction.

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Team

Zhu Fei- CEO & Founder

Fei is the former CEO of Arting365, with 15 years of experience in the creative industry. He has much experience in art and creative industry to drive Zeepin. He was the Director of Shanghai Top Young Creative Talents Association, Director of Shanghai-Jiangnan Intelligent Manufacturing Park Creative Industry Promotion Center, Director of Shanghai Industrial Design Association. Fei has founded Internet companies involving creative ecommerce, creative media, and design education, and has successfully created and operated a creative community with over 1.2 mln designer users.

Karl Xu-Co-founder & CSO

Xu has had much experience in strategy and operations. With an engineering degree in polymers, Xu has had the opportunity to work at GE in several management roles and SABIC. An engineering degree and more than 10 years of experience in business give Xu a strong foundation to be CSO.

Jason Xu- Senior Developer

Xu has worked for several enterprises and has more than 10 years of technology development and operation experience. He is familiar with the deployment and optimization of distributed applications and carried out certain research on data structure, asymmetric encryption, security protocol, and encryption algorithms.

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Mainnet launch, DApps Ready

Zeepin’s mainnet is scheduled to go live at the end of the month on Aug. 31. The company already has several DApps ready for launch including, but limited to  ZeeRights, ZeeCreate, ZeeSure, ZeeProof, ZeeWallet and CryptoGalaxy. These DApps will work within the Zeepin ecosystem to provide the tools creative producers need to secure their creative works.

While we were not able to get any response from the company on how they are dealing with perceived competition nor market acceptance, it could be said that they have a rather solid footing a massive amount of followers supporters on social media. The litmus test comes at the end of the month when the mainnet goes live. We must sit tight and wait until then.

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Will ShipChain Ever Sail: Past-ICO Review

👁 ICO Watch
David is trying to disrupt the Goliath’s $4 trln-dollar shipping industry, with a tech upgrade. But the platform has not launched yet
Will ShipChain Ever Sail: Past-ICO Review

ShipChain is a Blockchain-based technology that wants to disrupt the trillion-dollar shipping industry, a time-honored and revered industry going all the way back to the seafaring empires of late.

Despite the great reverence that abounds in the shipping industry, the logistics the ties the shipments together is still old world, with paper contracts, bills of lading, and general stacks of paperwork.

ShipChain wants to bring the shipping industry up to date with IT-based technologies, smart contracts and the SHIP utility token to drive the system.

Financials

ShipChain (SHIP) ran a utility token sale on Jan. 6, 2018, where it was able to raise some $30 mln in funding with token prices at $0.34 per token during the sale.

Token entry into open markets took place on March 10th 2018, with an initial price of $0.27 per token. SHIP immediately plummeted to $0.10 per token by March 23rd before edging up again to a high of $0.23 by April 23rd before falling again back down to the current price, at time of writing, of $0.02 per token.

CoinMarketCap ranks ShipChain at 506 with a total market cap at only $5.5 mln, the drastic fall in token price is to blame for such a low market valuation. Daily trade volumes are just below $1,500.

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Captain and crew

John Monarch- CEO & Cofounder

Monarch is the founder and CEO of Direct Outbound, one of the fastest growing fulfillment/3PL companies in the country, and one of the largest in Southeast US.

He is intimately familiar with the logistics industry in all aspects, from postal logistics and parcel private carriers to air, sea, and intermodal land freight.

Sam Rusani- Chief Revenue Officer

As a serial entrepreneur, Blockchain advocate/investor, and talent manager, Rusani has worked with some of the biggest brands in the world, such as Sony, Fender, Virgin, Universal Music, Ogilvy, Heineken, VISA and Mercedes.

He has also advised international companies and negotiated trade deals on their behalf.

Magnus Dufwa- Lead Developer

Dufwa is a senior C#, SQL, and Solidity developer, with over 18 years of experience developing enterprise projects.

He has built and managed financial processing systems that handle more than four mln transactions per year and developed smart contracts for ad auction projects and ICOs.

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Technology

ShipChain uses ERC20 to base its Blockchain and smart contracts and there are two Blockchains, one is the main chain which stores shipment delivery and confirmation as well as, completed contracts.

On the secondary or sidechain, information about loads, geo waypoints and other shipping information is recorded and publicly validated on the sidechain.

In an interview published on the company blog, Monarch state that “ Our goal is to launch the ShipChain portal/platform either late Q4 or early Q1 next year.” He continued, “Right now our team is focused on our enterprise partners and pilot programs.

Our Director of Product Management is heavily involved in every pilot program we are running.

The C-Suite is in close communication with partners to ensure that everything is up to expectations, and to help guide the entire process to fit the ShipChain vision.”

Time will tell

Again, it may be too early to tell how this company will fare as the mainnet and the main platform is not operational yet.

While the solutions that ShipChain offers are unique and challenges the behemoth shipping industry, there is no solid evidence that the company will be successful with its endeavors at this juncture, taking token price alone into account and it does not look good with a flatlining token.

ShipCoin was not available to comment on the company’s current financial situation.

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10 Best and Biggest Bitcoin Mining Pools

📚 Wikicoin
Being an individual Bitcoin miner can be hard work but joining a pool will get you a steady payout. The advantages of group mining are great
10 Best and Biggest Bitcoin Mining Pools

As the old adage goes, “two heads are better one,” so go that the more miners working together to mine Bitcoin, the better the results for the individual miner in terms of rewards. So there is a definite advantage to join a pool as you can concentrate your hash power to mine more rewards and split them among the pool of miners. Let’s learn about the best mining pool for Bitcoin.

Mining is concentrated to China, which is due to a low cost of electricity and rumors that the electric suppliers route extra electricity to mining pools as not to waste it in the moment- you cannot store electricity at such a massive level for later use! This low cost of electricity and a high number of inhabitants makes for a great combination to support Bitcoin mining. Despite some saying the contrary

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Concentration of mining pools by country

These top six countries have 96 percent of the world’s Bitcoin mining pools.

  1. China 81%

  2. Iceland 5%

  3. Japan 3%

  4. Czech Republic 3%

  5. Republic of Georgia 2%

  6. India  2%

Reap the rewards

One of the main reasons to join a mining pool is that you can earn more rewards as a group as opposed to a sole prospector, however, there are different ways that rewards are paid out, each with their own advantages and disadvantage. Remember, that some pools slice a percentage of the top of your rewards, from zero to three percent. Not all pools are upfront about their fee structure.

  • Pay-per-Share (PPS): Each time a share is submitted, a user is paid a fixed amount. The major downside to using the PPS structure, is this particular method results in higher pool fees and the more fees, the more your rewards diminish.

  • Proportional: The user is paid based on the proportion of shares they found. The more shares submitted, the more a miner will earn. To increase earning power in this situation, one needs to either upgrade their mining rig or find a pool with an overall lower hashrate.

  • Score based: A proportional method weighed by the time a share is submitted.

  • Pay Per Last N Shares (PPLNS): Similar to proportional, but each share can be rewarded on multiple rounds. Pay Per Last N Shares structure can be quite lucrative. This may sound similar to the proportional payout method, but there is one big difference PPLNS looks at the last N shares, regardless of round boundaries.

Top 10 largest Bitcoin mining pools

Many of you might be asking, “what is the best Bitcoin mining pool to join?” “Which one has the best Bitcoin mining payout?” Or “What is going to happen when all 21 million Bitcoins are mined?”

1. Antpool

Antpool is a mining pool based in China and owned by Bitmain. Antpool mines about 25 percent of all blocks. It might be the best free Bitcoin mining pool to join, but keep an eye out on the Bitcoin transaction fees that are not disclosed. Also, be aware of Antbleed. Within the last six months, AntPool has discovered the maximum number of Bitcoin blocks, around 18 percent of the total discovered blocks, making it a consistent top ranker in the list of mining pools. AntPool’s pool hashrate currently stands at around 3600 Petahash/second (PH/s). It was the best Bitcoin mining pool 2017.

2. BTC.com

BTC.com is a public mining pool. It supports full pay-per-share (FPPS) payout methodology. Proponents claim that's more beneficial to miners as it calculates and adds a standard transaction fee to the regular block rewards, making the overall payout higher than the standard pay-per-share (PPS) payout. It currently maintains a hashrate of 5.88 Exahash per second (EH/s).

3. BTC.top

BTC.top is a private pool and cannot be joined. The pool hashrate hovers in the range of around 3100 Petahash/second (PH/s).

4. Bixin

Another mining pool that is based in China. It is a public pool, but only in Chinese.

5. BTCC

BTCC is a pool and also China’s third largest Bitcoin exchange. Its mining pool currently mines about seven percent of all blocks.

6. F2pool

F2Pool is based in China. F2Pool has mined about five to six percent of all blocks over the past six months.

7. ViaBTC

ViaBTC is a somewhat new mining pool that has been around for about one year. Again, it is for Chinese speakers.

8. BW Pool

BW is another mining company based in China. It currently mines about five percent of all blocks.

9. Bitclub.Network

Bitclub Network is a large mining pool and could be one of the best Bitcoin mining pool to join. Remember to do your own research!

10. Slush

Slush was the very first mining pool and currently mines about three percent of all blocks. It was founded in the Czech Republic. It is one of the most popular mining pools despite not being one of the largest. It just might also be the best Bitcoin mining pool to join. It is also user-friendly and is best Bitcoin mining pool for beginners. Additionally, when it was newer, it was one of the best Bitcoin mining pool 2012.

Honorable Mention:

Eligius

A Bitcoin mining pool based in the US. There is no registration required, making it quick and simple to join. It was founded in 2011 and it was one of the first Bitcoin mining pools. It is a very small pool with under one percent of the network hashrate.  One of the main advantages of Eligius is that there are no fees. Users receive the entire block reward, including the transaction fees. Eligius operates a PPS reward system with a minimum payout of 0.04 BTC.

Mining is hard work, work together

If you want to become a miner, it is generally recommended that you join a pool because when you work in a team, you will be more successful to mine and earn rewards on a consistent basis whereas if you go it alone, your rewards will be bigger but fewer and farther between. If you are just getting started, check out some of the listed mining pools, but remember to do your due diligence before joining.

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Past ICO Review: Polkadot, Wait, What Does it Do?

👁 ICO Watch
A Blockchain that offers scalability and interconnectivity, but yet with no inherent purpose raised $345 in 2017 in an ongoing ICO.
Past ICO Review: Polkadot, Wait, What Does it Do?

 

It’s a rather curious case about Polkadot. If you ask around, not many have heard of the coin, which has raised some $345 mln! The ICO started on October 14, 2017 and was finished in just three days, on October 27, 2017.  

This is a bit of a mysterious coin because its position is that it is a Blockchain designed to be just that: a generic Blockchain without any special purpose.

The following passage is an excerpt from the white paper:

Polkadot is a scalable heterogeneous multi-chain. This means that unlike previous Blockchain implementations which have focused on providing a single chain of varying degrees of generality over potential applications, Polkadot itself is designed to provide no inherent application functionality at all.

Rather, Polkadot provides the bedrock “relay-chain” upon which a large number of validatable, globally-coherent dynamic data-structures may be hosted side-by-side. We call these data-structures “parallelized” chains or parachains, though there is no specific need for them to be Blockchain in nature.

What Polkadot attempts to do is to take create the scalability and interconnectivity that is missing in the Blockchain sphere.

Three pillars of Polkadot

Governance

Polkadot holders have complete control over the protocol. All privileges, which on other platforms are exclusive to miners, will be given to the relay chain participants (DOT holders), including managing exceptional events such as protocol upgrades and fixes.

Operation

Game theory incentivizes token holders to behave in honest ways. This mechanism rewards good actors while bad actors will lose their stake in the network. This ensures the network stays secure. This ensures the network stays secure.

Bonding

New parachains are added by bonding tokens. Outdated or non-useful parachains are removed by removing bonded tokens. This is a form of Proof of Stake.

The founder

Gavin Wood is the co-founder and former CTO of Ethereum. He is also the founder, CTO, and Chairman of Parity Technologies Ltd, which is supplying the development team behind Polkadot. He is also the founder and President of the Web3 Foundation, which aims to nurture technologies that can benefit the envisioned Web3 ecosystem of a truly decentralized Internet.

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Year-long ICO continues

So what we have here, is essentially a generic Blockchain that has not even had a genesis yet. The genesis block is supposed to occur in Q3 2019. Strangely, the website states there is an inherent risk that it might not happen at all:

Due to the decentralized nature of Polkadot, there is no guarantee that the Polkadot genesis block (to the extent that it is developed) will be deployed as intended or at all. As DOTs are native tokens to Polkadot, they will not come into existence, whether as part of the Polkadot genesis block or otherwise, if there is no deployment of the Polkadot genesis block.

Frozen funds lead to stalled plans

We might not see that genesis block after all.  The company developing Polkadot, Parity Technologies, reported that there was a significant vulnerability in the Ethereum parity wallet library contract and some 68 percent of the ICO-raised funds in ETH are frozen.

At the end of the ICO, the final DOT price was 0.109 ETH meaning that a total of 485,331 ETH was raised from the sale of the five mln tokens. A very impressive figure from just an action as at the time of writing, the above ETH figure was worth some $345 mln.

Despite the frozen funds, the team at Parity Technologies insists that they will meet the Q3 2019 launch date on time. This coin still has potential, yet its practical use case still must be proved for a better understanding of what it is supposed to do.

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Past-ICO Review: Down She Goes! Stably Sinking

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While stable coins are to be stable and fixed to a fiat, the only stable thing about this coin is its steady decline
Past-ICO Review: Down She Goes! Stably Sinking

Stable coins are a sign of the crypto sphere competing with fiat currency. We all very well know that crypto prices swing wildly and what might be profit one day, is a loss the next day or even a few hours later! With stable coins, crypto users can move their fiat currency to the digital and be able to sleep at night knowing that they will not wake up to a gut-wrenching red. Having funds in stable coins means it is easier to buy other cryptos when the time is right, without having to wait for the cash to clear the physical to digital divide.

How the stable coin works

Havven, like well-known stable coin Tether offers a haven for users to store value without it fluctuating wildly. There are two tokens Havvens and Nomins. When a user transacts and buys Havvens, 20 percent of it is issued in Nomins, which are a hedge against price fluctuations. According to the website, “Havven solves the scaling problem with the same approach used by closed-loop payment networks, which involves charging fees on transactions as well as hedging fees for idle balances. These fees are paid to users who collateralize the network and provide stability.” The rate for Nomin tokens is regulated by the system through the stimulation of either the release of new tokens or reverse buy-back and the burning of tokens to reduce the volume of available tokens and to push the growth rate to the value of one Nomin equals $1.

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Meet the team

Kain Warwick– Founder/CEO

In 2014, Warwick founded the Blueshyft network, one of Australia's main platforms for making crypto transactions. In addition, the platform provides a number of other services, including "over the counter" Bitcoin purchases, deposit management on digital wallets and even logistics solutions. This organization is also a member of the Australian Digital Commerce Association, whose members are companies that are helping develop the national digital economy via Blockchain technology.

Justin Moses- CTO

Moses has more than 25 years of experience in the field of IT  and has worked as CTO on various projects since 2009 with Warwick.

Tim Bass- Project Lead

Bass is the co-founder and CEO of the BLOCK8 project, as well as co-founder and director of the myStake platform. Both companies are engaged in the development of Blockchain technology in the financial sector. Bass has more than 10 years of experience in the field of Solutions Architecture for large companies in Australia.

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Finance

The ICO raised some $30 mln in funding proceeds. While this is a stable coin the rate is relatively fixed however upon further inspection there are some interesting price details. When it debuted on March 14, 2018 the token piece was $0.45. On May 20 the price reached an all-time high of $0.75. Now, the current token price is at $0.08… a far cry from being stable.

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Think Crypto is a Bubble? What About Silicon Valley Startups Then?

Opinions
Many feel that the cryptocurrency and ICO model is a bubble, but they should look at Silicon Valley startups, in the same manner, more closely
Think Crypto is a Bubble? What About Silicon Valley Startups Then?

Many have come forward and said that the cryptocurrency ecosystem is a bubble, and a big part of that has to do with the way in which the ICO sector has operated, mimicking the Dot Com boom that was seen in the early 2000s.

However, those same commentators should probably look a little closer to home if they are looking for a bubble, especially one predicated on promises of equity and growth in user base.

ICOs and startups follow a very similar model in terms of capital raising. The biggest deviation, however, is the inclusivity of an ICO whereas startups look to major investors for their funds, and then turn their user base into the commodity.

This play from startups is much more open to collapse whereas the ICO model of individual and open investing allows individuals to become members, rather than a commodity, of the project.

The Silicon Tech Bubble is hitting its peak

Many think that the tech bubble popped in 2000, however, it has emerged as a slightly different beat. We are seeing instances of overvaluation creeping back into the space, especially when successful startups are being taken to IPO.

Venture Capital-funded companies, some reaching the status of unicorns, are dying all the time as they enter the market. These companies are severely overrated when they reach the billion dollar mark, as much as by 50 percent- according to research conducted by Will Gornall at the University of British Columbia and Ilya Strebulaev of Stanford.

Of those 135 unicorns examined, the researchers estimate that nearly half, or 65, should be more fairly valued at less than $1 bln.

This is already a huge indicator of a bubble brewing in Silicon Valley. Keith Wright, instructor of accounting and information services at the Villanova School of Business, explains the way in which this overvaluation occurs.

“Investors focus on growing the unicorn customer base, not turning a profit. New regulatory conditions, including wildly separate share classes, which give some shareholders significantly more rights than others, have resulted in a danger of widespread overvaluation,” Wright said in an interview to CNBC:

“Some shareholders have voting rights to assets, rights to dividends, rights to inspect records.”

ICOs and their similar model

People will argue that at its core, ICOs are often overvalued as well, but while there is a similar model between startups and ICOs trying to raise capital for the company, there is also one major difference.

Startups will go to venture capitalists and other sources of major resources in order to gain capital, and in exchange, as Wright states, these shareholders get huge rights. However, the situation with an ICO is that there is no barrier to entry for individuals to ‘invest’ in the company- it is accessible to everyone.

Essentially what this allows is any person who invests in an ICO becomes a member of the company and thus has big and powerful rights over the way in which the company functions.

If, for example, a Blockchain project attempted to raise funds through an ICO by saying they will have complete control of their users and user data once the product launches, it would be considered ridiculous and the project would fail without even starting.

However, with startups, only the wealthy investors have members rights, and those who utilize the project become the commodity with their data and information.

A change in scene

Venture capitalists are starting to become dinosaurs, and the entire startup space is being reworked with the advent of Blockchain and ICOs. But it is not only the startups that are looking at new disruptive technologies.

“Large incumbent companies are learning how to adopt emerging and disruptive technologies faster than ever. Companies such as Actesy.com from St. Gallen have recently perfected and piloted new software that enables Fortune 500 companies such as Porsche, Roche and BASF to quickly and easily adopt emerging technologies while maintaining their existing highly expensive, entrenched legacy solutions,” Wright adds.

“Previously, it may have taken 10 or more years to replace enterprise-wide global systems. When large companies learn to sustain their competitive advantage through disruptive technologies, the unicorn game is limited.”

Trust is the ultimate catalyst for any community. There are projects like U°Community that build a transparent community platform with dynamic reputation. Users could create content, interact with people, direct their own communities, run businesses, and even build dApps without having to leave the ecosystem.

The shift at the top is happening as the incumbent companies look further afield than those big, and overvalued, unicorns in Silicon Valley. And at the grassroots level, individual investors, such as those being seen in ICOs are starting to become as big and as important as your traditional heavy investor.

The exclusivity of backing a project no longer fits the mark, rather the crowdfunding, ICO model is what is working in today’s world, and as such Silicon Valley startups that are still pursuing becoming unicorns and gaining too much funding to become overvalued, are blowing up that tech bubble all over again.

A personal touch

The real crux of the matter between a startup using Venture Capitalist money and that of an ICO using funding from individuals who back the project is the support. Major companies fund projects hoping to mold and control them for their own gains, and they have little to no worry about the company and its users needs or wants.

At the same time, when it comes to an ICO, the people investing in it, have a vested interest in the success of the project, they are supporting it and wanting it to succeed.

When it comes to defining a bubble, overvaluing a project just to pick up users and without looking at the potential and growth of the company, it becomes quite apparent which is more of a bubble.

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