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In October 2007, a 14-year-old girl was kidnapped while looking for a pay phone in the Beacon Hill section of Seattle and repeatedly raped by her abductor over the next couple of days before escaping. Now, 11 years later, police may have their man—but they may have had him…
The U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency is expected to complete a 30-day test next month of the use of facial recognition technology to screen international travelers at Los Angeles International Airport.
But an audit by the Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Inspector General found…
With travel demand growing and the price of jet fuel rising, Delta and American Airlines have raised checked bag fees, matching the higher prices adopted in the last few weeks by JetBlue and United.
American Airlines, the world’s biggest airline, became the latest carrier Thursday to announce that…
On July 19, a group of interdisciplinary researchers from the University of Pennsylvania, with guidance from the esteemed Penn Law professor David Hoffman, published an in-depth study of initial coin offerings (ICOs) that promise innovative concepts like autonomous governance and operate by the belief that ‘code is law’. However, most of the ICOs the group researched failed to match the original contractual promises and the so-called ‘trustless trust’ offered by these projects had very little merit.
University of Pennsylvania Study Looks Into Whether ICO White Paper Promises Match the Project’s Codebase
This week, researchers from the University of Pennsylvania and Penn Law professor David Hoffman have published an interesting working paper on ICOs called “Coin Operated Capitalism.” The paper was authored by university members Shaanan Cohney (computer science PHd), David Wishnick (a fellow at Penn Law’s interdisciplinary Center for Technology), and Jeremy Sklaroff (Penn’s JD/MBA program).
The study’s authors surveyed and audited the top 50 ICOs that raised the most funds in 2017 and researchers looked at whether or not the ICO promises made by the promoters and white papers actually matched the technology’s codebase. The study finds that there are glaring differences between what the ICOs’ code delivers and what the creators promised to their investors.
“The automated mechanisms found in code—known as ‘smart contracts’—are not the only way entrepreneurs can deliver on their promises,” Wishnick explained.
But, according to proponents, they are what make ICOs innovative.
Only 20% of 50 ICO Codebases Matched the Promoter’s Promises
Out of the 50 ICOs surveyed, using both the white papers (contracts) and the codebases (delivered or non-delivered promises), a great deal of the ICO code and their associated ICO contracts did not match. In fact, only 20 percent of the 50 contracts surveyed matched their promises to code 100 percent of the time. “Nearly 60 percent made a least one governance promise that was missing from the code, and 20 percent had two or more mismatches,” the study’s authors emphasize.
“Surprisingly, in a community known for espousing a techno-libertarian belief in the power of ‘trustless trust’ built with carefully designed code, a significant fraction of issuers retained centralized control through previously undisclosed code permitting modification of the entities’ governing structures,” the working paper explains.
In Contrast to Traditional Law, the Smart Contract Community Is Full of Energy But So-Called Autonomous Protocols Need Vetting and Code Auditing
The paper concludes that the informality of smart-contract production does lead to “risks” but also “creativity”. Smart contract developers are far more creative than a “community of lawyers who tend to recycle language from agreement to agreement without much thought,” the study states. In contrast, the smart contract community has a lot of passion and energy, the researchers explain. But the study shows the manufacturing of smart contracts and blockchain promises must be evaluated and scrutinized closely.
“Beyond the production of smart contracts and blockchain code, our study also highlights the importance of the ecosystem through which crypto code is vetted, audited, and made legible to the outside world,” the paper concludes.
What do you think about the Penn Law working paper that details most ICO code does not match the promises tied to the project? Let us know what you think in the comment section below.
Images via Shutterstock, and the University of Pennsylvania
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Justin Bieber’s gotta be a little tired … because he was running all over the pitch trying to get in on the action in his soccer game. We got the Biebs playing some organized futbol at Bluff Creek Fields in Playa Vista Saturday afternoon. It’s…
Responding to strong market demand, AMD is planning to increase production of graphics cards which are currently in short supply. The recently launched RX Vega GPUs have virtually disappeared from shelves, with crypto mining gaining popularity among investors and enthusiasts. The revenue from the company’s Graphics Division has reached almost a billion dollars in the last quarter of 2017. Recognizing the shortages, AMD is trying to satisfy both gamers and miners.
More GPU Power Needed
Increasing interest in cryptocurrency mining during the past year has compelled companies like AMD to address the rising demand for hardware components. Skyrocketing prices of bitcoin and the other cryptos have lured many new investors and ordinary enthusiasts into the mining business. GPUs are used to mine altcoins like Ethereum and Monero which require more moderate computing power.
The miners’ appetite has forced Nvidia, AMD’s main competitor, to take steps to ensure gamers have a chance to get hold of its video processors. It recently asked retailors to limit the number of graphics cards that can be purchased at a time. AMD also admitted that its Radeon cards were in short supply and acknowledged that mining applications were responsible for the shortfall. Promising to increase production, the company hopes to satisfy the growing demand without disappointing any of its customers.
“The graphics channel is very low, and we are certainly working to replenish that environment”, said CEO Dr. Lisa Su, quoted by Polygon. Because the availability of graphics cards is “lower than we would like it to be,” she added:
We are ramping up production.
Her announcement represents a sharp turn after last fall when Lisa Su predicted that the demand from cryptocurrency miners would start to level off in Q4. “As we look at it,[crypto-related demand] continues to be a factor, but we’ve seen restocking in the channels and stuff like that. So we’re being a little bit conservative on the cryptocurrency side of the equation,” she said in October.
Speaking to investors during a conference call, Dr. Su presented the latest corporate earnings report, referring to the cryptocurrency mining market as a good part of AMD’s business. Advanced Micro Devices has announced $ 1.48 billion USD of revenue in the fourth quarter of 2017. $ 958 million of that total came from its Computing and Graphics division, where the year-on-year increase reached 60%. Sales of graphics cards, like the new Vega 56 and Vega 64, have been a key factor.
Short on Memory Though
Other important players may influence AMD’s ability to make good on its promises to satisfy gamers and miners. While ramping up production, the company must take into account the already recognized shortages of RAM. GDDR5 and HBM2 – the two main types of memory used in its RX 400, 500 and the new RX Vega graphics cards – are also undersupplied. In that respect, AMD’s management assured investors and customers it would work with its partners to overcome the deficit.
Retailers also have a say when it comes to priorities on the GPU market. Some of them have already signaled their intention to implement their own measures to prevent cryptocurrency miners from buying the bulk of the available graphics cards. They simply want to make sure that gamers get their share of the stock.
Another crucial factor is the fluctuating demand for mining equipment that tends to follow the ups and downs of the cryptocurrency market. The profitability of mining operations is highly dependent on the rates of the mined coins, as their prices affect the rate of return of mining projects.
Do you think demand for cryptocurrency mining components will grow in 2018? Tell us in the comments section below.
Images courtesy of Pixabay, AMD.
The post AMD Increases GPU Production to Match Crypto Mining Demand appeared first on Bitcoin News.
As bad as President Donald Trump describes U.S.-Pakistani ties today, they can get far worse.
The bitcoin charity Pineapple Fund has already donated $ 1 million to aid in the testing of MDMA as a treatment for PTSD. It is now challenging the cryptocurrency community to donate more, and pledged to match donations up to $ 4 million.
Curing PTSD with MDMA
Pineapple Fund, the $ 86 million bitcoin charity, has announced it will double the value of every donation to the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS) until March 10th, up to $ 4 million. This is meant to help the non-profit research organization reach its funding goal needed to begin Phase 3 clinical trials of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy in patients with severe post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The pledge comes after the fund has already donated $ 1 million to this endeavor.
Pine, the anonymous bitcoin whale behind the fund, commented: “I believe we, the cryptocurrency community, can fully fund Phase 3 trials. Prescription MDMA could be a gift to this world from the bitcoin community. Let’s make MDMA medicine a reality, and give the gift of an enjoyable life to those suffering from PTSD. If you believe that psychedelic drugs can have incredible therapeutic potential, then I believe this is one of the highest impact projects today.”
New Money, New Ideas
This donation shows another example of how, the redistribution of wealth from old money to early adopters of technology via the rise of bitcoin is creating a positive change in the world.
Mainly known as an illicit party drug under the names Ecstasy, Molly and others, MDMA still doesn’t have any accepted medical applications and is deemed illegal for personal use in most countries. While some established charities would have difficulties associating themselves or their donors with such an experiment, a fund created by an anonymous person will have no such qualms.
Other recent Pineapple Fund donation recipients include: Quill, which got $ 1 million to help them develop a new open source educational model that teaches kids critical thinking and science comprehension; Possible, an organization delivering integrated and scalable healthcare in Nepal which also got $ 1 million; Software Freedom Conservancy, home to projects like Git, Homebrew, QEMU, and Selenium; and Wings for Conservation, which is providing aerial support against elephant poachers in Chad. Last month the fund also donated $ 5 million to test universal basic income in Africa.
What other good causes should the bitcoin community should get behind? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!
Images courtesy of Shutterstock.
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The post Pineapple Will Match up to $ 4M in Bitcoin to Test Curing PTSD With Psychedelic Drug appeared first on Bitcoin News.
Some 23 years after a New York City rape victim was denounced as a hoaxster by a prominent newspaper columnist, police say they have solved the case with modern DNA-testing methods. After the woman was raped in Brooklyn’s Prospect Park in 1994 while carrying groceries home, New York Daily News…