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ICO Debate Exposes Rift in Enterprise Ethereum Alliance

The newly launched Enterprise Ethereum Alliance (EEA) might not be as aligned as its name suggests.

Launched in February, the group of ethereum startups and enterprise institutions aims to leverage large corporate investment in the private ethereum blockchain in a way that also strengthens the public blockchain. To share more about the current state of EEA, as well as its direction going forward, several members of the group gathered at the the Rise fintech accelerator in New York.

At the event, hosted by New York research and education firm Blockmatics, a panel consisting of representatives from JP Morgan, BNY Mellon, ConsensSys, Monax and BlockApps provided insight into the complexities of forming consensus with so many disparate interests.

The most heated part of the evening involved discussion of funding via cryptographic token sales, also known as 'initial coin offerings' (ICOs).

In response to a question from the audience about how to conduct an ICO in a trustworthy..

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5 Fast Facts on Ether, The Ethereum Token That’s Up 900% This Year

Bitcoin isn't the only cryptocurrency that's trading at all-time highs.

Lost a bit in the mainstream spotlight has been ether, the cryptographic token that powers of the ethereum blockchain. But, when compared to bitcoin's nearly 50% surge in value since the start of the year, ethereum's 900% climb is worth examining in context.

From roughly $8 on 1st January to an all-time high of $82 this week, ether has come a long way since its began trading in 2015.

Here are 5 things newcomers may benefit from knowing about the market.

1) It's not an overnight success
Since early 2016, ether has been the second-largest market cap of any cryptocurrency, managing to outshine more tenured alternative asset protocols such as litecoin and ripple, according to CoinMarketCap data.

This sharp increase has taken place as the broader cryptocurrency space has attracted significant capital inflows, rising almost $7bn in value in Q1 2017.

During this time frame, the price of ethe..

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Bye, Bitcoin. Hello, Ethereum.

Original Article

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Ethereum’s Big Switch: The New Roadmap to Proof-of-Stake

After years of development, ethereum has a new plan to update the algorithm that keeps its entire network in sync.

Vitalik Buterin, ethereum's creator, recently released a rough implementation guide that reveals the network's developers will first start with a 'hybrid' system that merges bitcoin-style proof-of-work mining with its much-anticipated and still-experimental proof-of-stake system called Casper, created by Buterin.

The plan effectively means ethereum will begin alternating between the two systems, so that some transaction blocks (one out of 100) are secured via proof-of-stake and the rest remain on proof-of-work.

Buterin has notably been working on his implementation in parallel with ethereum developer Vlad Zamfir, “cross-pollinating” their ideas. According to Karl Floersch, blockchain engineer for ethereum startup ConsenSys and a coder working with Buterin on Casper's development, the result is that the network is choosing the more conservative o..

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A Decentralized Mixer For Ethereum? Zcoin Is Working on It

The development team behind zcoin, a privacy-focused cryptocurrency built on the Zerocoin protocol, has announced a project to create a decentralized coin mixer for ether transactions.

Revealed in a post on the zcoin blog published 4th May, the idea is to create an ethereum-compatible version of the procedures in the Zerocoin protocol which allow users to convert non-anonymous cryptocurrency (bitcoin, ether etc) into an anonymous token.

The idea is that these tokens could be sent to another user, converted back into the base currency and spent without revealing the private token's owner.

Running such a system on ethereum opens up the possibility of both leveraging the platform's smart contract functionality and eliminating the need for a trusted third party to handle the mixing, as is currently the case with bitcoin mixers.

As the zcoin post explained:

“Unlike Coinjoin and its variants, it also does not require a central server to process such mixing, does not require yo..

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Former Coinbase Engineer Launches Ethereum Search Engine

A former software engineer for cryptocurrency exchange startup Coinbase has launched a new search engine for ethereum, the second largest blockchain platform by market cap.

Created by Antonio Juliano, dubbed Weipoint and unveiled in a Medium post, the tool is designed to provide a means to search for, say, a smart contract underlying a particular project or token.

Though unrelated, the release comes days after Coinbase itself revealed that it is testing an app called Token, which will act as both wallet and browser for ethereum apps.

According to Juliano, Weipoint will eventually act as a decentralized application (or DApp) browser as well, with planned functionality for other ethereum-based resources.

Juliano wrote:

“Weipoint can be used to search for and interact with ethereum smart contracts. We're planning to add search for entire dapps in the near future and eventually anything behind decentralized domain services such as ENS.”

The project is, according to Juliano, envi..

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What’s to Do Before Ethereum Enters ‘Metropolis’?

Ethereum is over the hump, moving towards the third of its four planned stages of development to further the groundwork for its so-called 'world computer'.

The next stage, called Metropolis, fuses a motley bunch of technical changes that might seem a bit random, but will pave the way for future updates that make ethereum easier to use.

The upgrade has taken longer than expected, largely because an unknown attacker launched denial of service attacks on the network last year, disrupting transactions and projects being built on the platform.

However, recent developer meeting notes show that progress is continuing, with some teams almost done on implementing their changes and now preparing for testing.

Dimitry Khokhlov, Ethereum Foundation testing engineer, told CoinDesk that development of the third phase is roughly halfway to completion.

So, what’s still left to do?

Improvement proposals
Firstly, developers need to finish coding the upgrades. Although this long-awaited re..

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Watch This Ethereum Slot Machine Make Payouts in Real Time

A new startup called Better Gaming is hoping to tap into the billion-dollar online gambling industry by tapping the power of ethereum smart contracts.

The company, which is based in Malta and London and has been operating in stealth mode up until now, has released a demo video of its first product: a slot machine game that runs in-browser as an ethereum DApp, issuing payouts to users based on the terms of its associated smart contract.

In the Medium post introducing the product, developer Jez San writes that the team decided on a slot machine game for two reasons. First, because the level of mathematical complexity would provide a good benchmark for what was possible in a game-focused smart contract, and secondly, because slot machines are the most popular form of entertainment in Western casinos.

(In fact, slot machines are credited for perfecting the addictive mode of user interactions which many modern games and applications try to replicate.)

The demo video is recorded with Chr..

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Take Two: Ethereum Domain Registrar Relaunches on Testnet

An effort to create a decentralized domain registrar on top of ethereum is moving ahead, a month after its first launch was aborted.

The Ethereum Name Service (ENS), led by the Ethereum Foundation’s Alex Van de Sande and Nick Johnson, was set up to register and auction off domains tied to the platform.

The project initially launched in mid-March, but a pair of critical bugs forced the development team to pull back the app.

According to a new blog post, a reworked ENS registrar has been released on the Ropsten network, a testnet for ethereum apps. The release comes weeks after the ENS team published the results of two audits detailing the issues that led to the aborted launch. Issues identified at launch, as well as during the audit, have now been addressed, developers said.

The plan is to soft launch ENS in the weeks ahead, effectively stretching out the time in which domains become available.

“A softer launch should provide us with more time to react to and resolve any issues. It..

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Ethereum Developers Eye Proof-of-Stake Shift with New Geth Update

The team behind ethereum’s most popular user client have released a new update that includes support for alternative consensus systems.

Late last week, the developers behind Geth unveiled version 1.6, featuring support for a “plugable consensus model” in anticipation of ethereum’s shift from proof-of-work to proof-of-stake.

In the past year and a half, the project has been laying the groundwork to move away from proof-of-work – also utilized in other public blockchains like bitcoin – as part of a broader evolution of ethereum. In recent days, developers have also hinted at momentum towards Metropolis, the next version of ethereum.

The goal, according to the post, is to create the conditions for developers who are looking to stand up ethereum networks that utilize different consensus models, such as proof-of-stake.

The team explained:

“The result is that Geth 1.6 features a plugable consensus model where developers, wanting to roll their own fork of ethereum with wildly different w..

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