💥Outdated Node Clients Cause Blockchain Reorg on Eth2 Beacon Chain
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Beacon Chain Blocks Scrambled
By Samuel Haig
The Eth2 Beacon Chain’s validators fell out of step on May 25 after a client update boosted some clients but caused confusion among validators who hadn’t bothered to upgrade.
The incident, called a blockchain reorganization, happens when nodes disagree on the order of the most recent block. Blockchains order blocks – batches of transactions – chronologically.
If some nodes are faster than others, they can’t agree which block should come first. If that happens, they’ll keep adding blocks to their own version of the blockchain, then discard the shorter chain when the next block gets produced.
That’s exactly what happened yesterday.
Andreessen Horowitz Doubles Down on Web3
Venture capital firm a16z has raised $4.5 billion for its fourth crypto fund, the firm announced Wednesday morning.
The new fund dwarfs a16z’s previous fundraising efforts and brings the total amount of money the firm has raised for crypto ventures to $7.6 billion.
“We think we are now entering the golden era of web3,” Chris Dixon, a general partner at the firm, wrote in a blog post announcing the fund. “A massive wave of world-class talent has entered web3 over the last year. They are brilliant and passionate and want to build a better internet. That’s why we decided to go big.”
Crypto Fund 4 will provide nascent crypto companies with $1.5 billion in seed financing and $3 billion in venture financing, according to the firm. Web3 gaming, DeFi, zero-knowledge proofs, decentralized social media, self-sovereign identity and layer 1 and 2 infrastructure are among the fund’s areas of focus.
Disgraced WeWork Founder Enters Crypto
By Jason Levin
Adam Neumann, the disgraced founder of WeWork, has ventured into crypto. His new company, Flowcarbon, just raised $70M for a private token sale led by a16z crypto. It wants to provide crypto-based carbon credits to offset pollution from the companies that are slowly killing us all.
When companies harm the environment, they can buy carbon credits to reduce their net emissions. These credits are sold by companies that work to reduce greenhouse gasses from the atmosphere. McKinsey predicts that the $3B carbon credit market could grow to $50B by 2030.
Neumann’s company wants to put this market on the (proof-of-stake) Celo blockchain. Its “Goddess Nature Token” (GNT) is backed by carbon credits certified by Verra, one of the four market-recognized registries. GNT is a carbon credits stablecoin, essentially.
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Mint Essays As NFT Collections on L2
By Samuel Haig
Web3 blog platform Mirror now lets writers sell their essays as NFTs.
Mirror, a kind of Medium meets Web3, lets bloggers publish essays on the Ethereum blockchain, then vote on the best ones with the platform’s governance token.
Upstart writers could already sell NFTs on the platform and hold crowdsales – they’ve raised $15.36M since Mirror launched in 2020.
Now they can create NFTs of their posts, many of which ebulliently describe the future of Web3.
Airdrop Opportunists Punished
The Optimism Foundation, the entity behind the eponymous Layer-2 scaling solution for Ethereum, is cracking down on sybil attackers.
To maximize influence or profit, some individuals or organizations create multiple online accounts — or, in the world of crypto, wallets — posing as independent or unaffiliated. These so-called Sybil attackers hoard value created by airdrops, the crypto giveaways meant to generate interest in a nascent project, as well as power over a project whose tokens confer governance rights.
“Optimism is for the people, not the sybils,” the Foundation said in a Monday post announcing the identification and removal of more than 17,000 alleged sybil attackers.
Layer 2s Defy Downtrend
By Samuel Haig
Even though the price of ETH has fallen by about 50% since early April, Ethereum scaling solutions continue to secure huge amounts of funding to address the bottlenecks that slow down the blockchain and make it expensive to use.
On May 25, StarkWare, an Israeli startup building Layer 2 scaling solutions for Ethereum, announced the completion of a $100M Series D funding round at an $8B valuation. The funding round was led by FTX and Compound backer Greenoaks Capital, and Moonpay and Alchemy investor Coatue. Other investors in the Series D include Tiger Global.
Rivals have also secured huge backing from major VC firms. In February, Polygon scored $450m in a round led by Sequoia Capital India, which lifted its valuation to $20B. Optimism raised $150M at a $1.65B valuation in a Series B round led by Paradigm and Andreessen Horowitz in March.
All these companies build rollups: a data compression technique that grabs batches of Ethereum transactions, rolls them up into a single transaction, then feeds the lone transaction back to Ethereum’s mainnet.
Circle Internet Financial is arguing the U.S. Federal Reserve should pass on launching a digital dollar, arguing that could strangle private-sector efforts such as Circle’s to manage their own dollar-based tokens. “A host of companies, including Circle, have leveraged blockchain technology to support trillions of dollars of economic activity with fiat-referenced stablecoins,” the company told the Fed in a letter released Wednesday. “The introduction of a CBDC by the Federal Reserve could have a chilling effect on new innovations.”
The Portuguese Parliament, Assembleia da República, rejected not one but two different proposals to tax Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, both of which came from political groups in the minority. At the start of this month, the country’s Minister of Finance Fernando Medina said that the government would begin taxing cryptocurrencies. He also stated that the government would work on the regulatory framework, but he did not provide a time frame for when this would occur.
American graphics card manufacturer Nvidia’s stock price tumbled in after-hours trading on Thursday because the revenue outlook for Q2 has fallen short of expectations. The tech firm saw a drop in sales of its Cryptocurrency Mining Processor (CMP) in Q1 to “nominal” levels compared to $155 million a year ago. The filing does not specify exact revenues on CMPs, but revenues have been falling since last year.
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Vitalik Proposes Soulbound Tokens as Web3 Credentials of the Future Ethereum creator Vitalik Buterin recently proposed a new kind of token standard that will help users gain insights into others’ real-world activities, accomplishments, likes and dislikes – something like a glimpse into their soul. Buterin’s soulbound tokens (SBTs) are non-transferrable NFTs held by unique crypto wallets called Souls. In the paper Buterin co-authored to introduce the concept, he described multiple ways SBTs could be used – as university degrees, education credentials, and as web3 credit scores.
OpenSea Drops New Marketplace Protocol for NFTs NFT developers just got a new tool to build with as the bear market rages on. OpenSea, the leading NFT marketplace, has launched what the company bills as a “web3 marketplace protocol for safely and efficiently buying and selling NFTs.” The protocol, called Seaport, will allow for a more varied, but also more specific, NFT trading experience — users will be able to post offers for NFTs including ERC20, ERC721, and ETH, instead of just ETH trading like OpenSea facilitates currently.
Milady NFTs Plummet As Founder Comes Clean Charlotte Fang had a confession to make on Saturday morning. “I was Miya,” the Twitter user once called the mastermind behind the Milady NFT collection, said. For a brief period in mid-April, the cheapest of the 10,000 generative, doe-eyed, anime avatars “inspired by 00’s Tokyo street fashion” was selling for a little more than $6,000. But the price began to drop, and fell even further after a May 5 story from CoinDesk exploring the Milady founder’s sordid history.
🧑💻 ✍️ Stories in The Defiant are written by Owen Fernau, Samuel Haig, Jason Levin, DeFiDad, Aleksandar Gilbert, and yyctrader, and edited by Edward Robinson, yyctrader, and Camila Russo. Videos are produced by Robin Schmidt, Alp Gasimov and Daniel Flynn. Podcast is led by Camila, edited by Alp.
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