EthHub Weekly #189

Altair is coming, Obol Network raises $6.15 million, Connext Explorer released, Polygon & DraftKings partner up and much more!

Curated by Anthony Sassano (@sassal0x) and Eric Conner (@econoar)

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🥩 Altair Week

The first network upgrade for the eth2 Beacon Chain, Altair, is scheduled to go live this week on October 27th at 10:56:23am UTC - more details in this post. The main features of this upgrade are: sync committees to support light clients, incentive accounting reforms to reduce spec complexity, and penalty parameter updates towards their planned maximally punitive values. After this upgrade is live, most core developer resources will be fully focused on The Merge which, by my own estimate, should happen somewhere in Q2 of 2022 - exciting times ahead!

I was on a live Twitter spaces last week hosted by Cryptex with Preston Van Loon and Hunter - you can find the recording of that here.

News of the Week

⚖️ New York Joins Crackdown on Crypto Lending, Seemingly Targeting Nexo and Celsius

On October 18, the New York Attorney General Letitia James announced cease and desist letters to two cryptocurrency lending firms. Another three firms received requests for information on corporate ownership and handling of user deposits.

The Office of the Attorney General (OAG) redacted the names of the firms under scrutiny. However, the cease-and-desist retained the names "Nexo Letter," while the request for information was labeled "Celsius Letter" upon initial publication, though the OAG subsequently corrected its files. The names implicate two of the largest lending platforms.

The Nexo cease-and-desist letter says that the OAG considered the firm's failure to register as a broker-dealer a violation of the Martin Act. BlockFi, a leading competitor, has been unavailable in New York since 2020. 

💰 Coinbase Spent Nearly $800k on Lobbying in Q3 2021

Leading crypto exchange Coinbase has massively ramped up its lobbying work in recent months, according to new lobbying disclosures.

Indeed, the lobbying disclosures from the third quarter of 2021 show that Coinbase has become one of the biggest spenders in crypto. Notably, the exchange re-registered its internal lobbying program in September. According to an October 20 disclosure, Coinbase revealed that Q3 spending on lobbying hit $625,000.

That amount comes from a firm that briefly registered to lobby back in 2015, spending a reported total of only $55,000 that whole year before terminating its registration at the beginning of 2016. 

Subsequently, Coinbase contracted lobbying firm Franklin Square Group for several years and onboarded law firm Steptoe & Johnson earlier in 2021. But Q3 2021 also saw the registration of contracts to lobby with a host of new firms, with reported spending of $170,000 on those companies.

Project Updates

What’s New in Eth2 - 22 October 2021

Updates on The Merge, the Pithos testnet, client diversity and much more in this weeks eth2 update from Ben.

Finalized No. 30

In this quick update, Danny Ryan reminds eth2 stakers to upgrade their nodes for Altair which goes live on October 27th.

The Aperture - Vol. 2

Continued work towards a public testnet for the State Network, client upgrades underway, lots of baseline functionality being built and more.

EF Grantee Roundup: September 2021

Updates on the and CadCAD Edu projects that the EF has supported through grants.

Permissionless Bridging Live on Arbitrum

By default, any ERC20 token on L1 that isn't registered to a Gateway can now be permissionlessly bridged to the Standard ERC20 Gateway.

Obol Network Raises $6.15 Million

The round was led by Ethereal Ventures, a venture fund set up by ConsenSys founder Joseph Lubin, with participation from Coinbase Ventures, Acrylic Capital, and many others.

Obol also revealed their genesis community.

Sismo Introduced

Sismo builds up your Ethereum profile with anonymised attestations created from your other accounts.

Associated Press and Chainlink Team Up

The Associated Press will make its trusted economic, sports and race call datasets available to leading blockchains via Chainlink, the world’s largest decentralized network of oracles, enabling smart contracts on any blockchain to securely interact with the AP's real-world data.

The Greatest LARP Now Live

The Greatest LARP is a coordination game about coordination games. Moloch, the god of Coordination Failure, is winning. And you, must stop him at all costs. The game has 4 levels. On each level, you and your friends will complete a mission. Only then can you pass to the next level. Some levels may involve minting of NFTs. All proceeds go to support public goods on Gitcoin Grants, of course.

Royalty Registry Introduced

The goal of the Royalty Registry is to make it easy for marketplaces to use the appropriate on-chain royalty configurations and to make it possible for contracts that did not originally support on-chain royalties to add them.

Connext Explorer Unveiled

Connextscan is a community project built by the CoinHippo team that gives a realtime view into the Connext network.

Element Finance Raises $32 Million

The Series A round was led by Polychain Capital and includes previous investors Andreessen Horowitz, Placeholder, A_Capital, and Scalar Capital. New investors in the round include Advanced Blockchain, Republic, Rarestone, Yunt Capital, P2P Validator, Ethereal Ventures, and their limited partners; and Femboy Capital.

Timeswap Raises Seed Round

The round was led by Multicoin Capital, Mechanism Capital & Defiance Capital with participation from others.

Oasis Integrates Flash Mint Module

Multiply on Oasis now uses the Maker Protocol Dai Flash Mint Module which will allow users to save up to 30% in fees.

Amun Launches PECO

The PECO token is an index to provide investors an easy and low cost way to invest in Polygon’s vibrant and growing ecosystem.

Influence to Launch on StarkNet

Influence is a grand strategy space MMO and will launch on StarkNet to give users high scalability with low fees, instant actions, deeper mechanics and more.

WalletConnect Updates

New domain & website, WalletConnect Cloud live, v2.0 of the protocol is coming and more.

Polynomial Protocol Raises $1.1 Million

The pre-seed round was led by Acrylic, accompanied by Genblock Capital, and Caballeros Capital with participation from various angels.

cBridge 2.0 Testnet Now Live

cBridge 2.0 brings with it a simpler UX, lower cost, easier liquidity providing and much more.

Polygon and DraftKings Partner Up

DraftKings marketplace, a digital collectibles ecosystem, will live on the Polygon PoS chain and DraftKings will also become a validator node in the network.

Toucan Introduced

Toucan describes itself as public infrastructure for carbon markets running on open blockchains.

Interesting Tweets

Ecosystem Bits

Blog Posts



Meme of the Week

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