EthHub Weekly #72

Circle moving to Bermuda, Microsoft using Ethereum for machine learning, learn to use MakerDAO with Coinbase and much more!

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

🎭 Drama, drama, drama

Well, the Ethereum community had an interesting time on twitter this week after Eric tweeted about a controversial block reward funding proposal - EIP-2025. You’re probably sick of hearing about it by now so I’ll spare the details but be sure to check out The Defiants recap of what happened (featuring a guest post by Eric himself). We’ll also be diving into EIP-2025 on the EthHub Weekly recap.

I’m going to be in San Francisco working at the Set offices from the 2nd of August for 2 weeks so be sure to reach out to me via twitter DM or on Telegram (@sassal0x) if you’d like to catch up and chat crypto! Eric and I will also both be at Berlin blockchain week.

Have a great week everyone!


News of the Week

🤔 Circle Moves Exchange Operations Offshore

Due to mounting regulatory pressures in the United States, the crypto company Circle is moving the majority of its exchange operations offshore.

Circle announced Monday it received a full Digital Assets Business Act license in Bermuda for its crypto exchange Poloniex. Circle CEO Jeremy Allaire said that 70 percent of Poloniex users hail from beyond the U.S. and the new Bermuda-based entity will handle those accounts from now on. In May, the company geofenced some assets on Poloniex from U.S. customers.

“Europe and Asia are both pretty significant markets for us in particular,” he said, adding the USDC stablecoin is particularly popular with institutional Asian investors. “The lack of regulatory frameworks significantly limits what can be offered to individuals and businesses in the U.S.”

Circle laid off around 30 employees earlier this year to “ensure our costs were in line with the market,” Allaire said. The cuts were attributed in part regulatory uncertainty in the U.S. Circle now says it plans to hire around the same number of people over the next 24 months, perhaps with different roles, to focus on global markets.

⚖️ IRS Says It’s Sending Warning Letters to US Cryptocurrency Owners

The U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced Friday that it has begun sending letters to taxpayers who own cryptocurrency, advising them to pay any back taxes they may owe or to file amended tax returns regarding their holdings.

In a news bulletin, the agency said that it began mailing what it called “educational letters” last week. According to the statement, there are three variations of the letter that were sent.

The IRS further said that it will have sent such letters to “more than 10,000 taxpayers” by the end of this month,” adding that “the names of these taxpayers were obtained through various ongoing IRS compliance efforts.”

😕 Prosecutors File Formal Complaint Against Infamous BTC-e Crypto Exchange

According to a court document filed on July 25 in the Northern District of California, BTC-e and its executive Alexander Vinnik have been indicted for the alleged crimes of conspiracy, money laundering, unlawful monetary transactions, and operating an unlicensed exchange. The now-defunct exchange and Vinnik face civil penalties of $88.6 million and $12 million, plus interest and costs, respectively, amounts initially determined by the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) in July 2017.

In all, Vinnik has been indicted for 17 counts of money laundering and two counts of engaging in unlawful monetary transactions. While BTC-e and Vinnik were also charged with one count of operating an unlawful money services business and one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering.

Project Updates

Cheeze Wizards Hackathon Announced

From August 1st to September 1st, developers are invited to build on top of Cheeze Wizards via the worldwide Cheeze Wizards hackathon.

Projects will be judged by a diverse panel of industry heavyweights, including Fred Wilson of Union Square Ventures — and there’s a whole host of prizes waiting to be won.

German Regulators Approve $280 Million Ethereum Token Sale

Fundament, a blockchain startup coming out of stealth mode, has received the green light to issue the first tokenized real-estate backed bond that can be widely offered to individual investors.

Announced Tuesday, the Berlin-based firm has obtained approval from Germany’s financial regulator, BaFIN, for the 250 million euro ($280 million) offering. By virtue of being regulated, the token will be open to any retail investor anywhere with no minimum investment restriction. 

Ethereum 2.0 Development Update #31 — Prysmatic Labs

Another biweekly update from the PryLabs team detailing their recent work on the Prysm client, an EthereumAPI reference implementation, sparse merkle tree optimizations and much more.

Gnosis x Burner Wallet

Gnosis are working with the Burner Wallet project to improve the crypto wallet onboarding experience so users can transfer funds to a Gnosis Safe wallet with the click of a button.

Microsoft Using Ethereum for Machine Learning Models

They’re using Ethereum to make machine learning models more accessible through the decentralization of the networks and in the blog post they describe the benefits of smart contracts. You can read a summarized version here.

ERC-2212 Published

ERC-2212 is a standard for staking DAI and converting it to Compound’s cDAI or directly staking cDAI. Using this standard, dapps can earn interest on the pooled stakes in exchange for a product or service.

Zefram from Betoken also introduced an implementation of the pooled cDAI idea on github.

ENS Workshop Applications Now Open

The workshop will be held on October 7th 2019 somewhere near the Devcon5 conference site (exact location to be shared closer to the event). The purpose of the workshop is to discuss the current state and future of ENS with the ENS team and others interested in the project. Be sure to get your application in!

EIP-2028 Accepted into Istanbul

EIP-2028 allows massive scalability for layer-2 solutions such as ZK-Rollup and the StarkExchange/StarkDEX. This is because EIP-2028 reduces the gas cost for transmitting data on Ethereum from 68 gas/byte to 16 gas/byte.

New Look for LocalEthereum

The new and improved website features advanced search, notification sounds, user last online indicators, integration with WalletConnect and support for more languages.

Learn to use MakerDAO With Coinbase

You can now earn $14 in Dai when you learn how to generate Dai with a CDP from Maker on Coinbase’s Earn platform.

Fluidity Tokenized Asset Portfolio (TAP) Introduced

TAP enables real world assets to be pledged as collateral in decentralized credit facilities such as MakerDAO. Available for Public Testing on Kovan

Tornado is a mixer service powered by zkSnark technologies that allows users to mix their Ethereum transactions in a non-custodial, trustless and serverless way.

Decentralized Margin Trading/Lending Coming to DDEX

A vastly improved DDEX with decentralized margin trading and lending is coming in August 2019. In the second week of August, an open beta will be launched which you can sign up to be notified about here.

Introducing ETHSimple 2.0

ETHSimple lets you explore, verify and renew your ENS names.

Community Member Spotlight

This week we’re highlighting the great work of Loredana Cirstea!

Loredana is working on various projects in the Ethereum ecosystem including building a wiki, a Libra/Move plugin for the Remix IDE, a universal filesystem for Ethereum and much more.

Be sure to also check out her incredibly active Github profile.

Keep up the great work Loredana!

On-Chain Activity

Interesting Tweets

Ecosystem Bits

Blog Posts



Meme of the Week

Vlad Zamfir has been a vocal critic of referring to ETH as money but this week he took “ETH is not money” out of his twitter name and we found the below tweet from Anett to be the perfect reaction.

Looking for Work?

Top jobs listed on Cryptocurrency Jobs this week:

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