Could Crypto really be $10 Trillion? Could Crypto really be $10 Trillion?

It’s clear there’s a ton of money in cryptocurrencies. A recent report from Morgan Stanley said the 100-crypto focused funds in existence right now have assets that total more than $2 billion. 2017 saw massive price upswings for a wide plethora of virtual currencies, and propelled Bitcoin straight into the hearts and minds of millions across the world.

But another report from an analyst at the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) said the value of cryptocurrency, blockchain technology, and decentralization could equate to an ecosystem with a value of $10 trillion dollars. The market cap for all cryptocurrencies out there is more or less around $700 billion right now.

The number came out in a research note from Mitch Steves of RBC Capital Markets, who wrote that “opportunity appears vast” despite the perceived risks in the cryptocurrency space in his 36-page note. He said the $10 trillion figure was a conservative estimate since it’s predicated on the idea that virtual currency is a store of value.

Steves also included a photo of his homemade mining rig in the report. He was a bit hesitant to share if the mine was actually creating virtual currency, but did say it was working and hinted that he might have more mines in his house.

He said the bulk of value could come from the protocol layer since that drives interest in decentralized app development after the actual application becomes successful. This line of thinking echoes the fat protocol theory put out by Union Square Ventures, which essentially says value creation of cryptocurrencies is going to happen at the lower levels of development.

Some of the main points Steves built his case on include how cryptocurrencies are a secure way to operate without a third party intermediary, and how blockchain has not ever been hacked.

Even though Steves is looking towards the future, his report also asserts that the fundamental aspects of the digital currency market are here to stay. He says the market for Bitcoin mining equipment stands at more than $4.2 billion dollars, with an additional $350-$450 million in ASIC-mined openings like Bitcoin Cash.

Steves also writes that GPU mined coins like Ethereum have a market of about $1.9 billion dollars. He also believes that spikes in cryptocurrency markets could spurn more miners to enter and buy new processing units. Companies like Nvidia and AMD were experiencing record-breaking sales figures for GPUs in the first half of the year, which started to sharply tail off in the third quarter of 2017. Steves predicts the conflation of better technology and interest by traditional investors will lead towards more mining in the future.

Steves also writes in the report about massive misunderstandings with decentralized technology. He compared the data storage network Filecoin (backed by a token), with the cloud storage company Box as an example. He explained how users of Box would see their data owned and controlled by a third party who has essentially unlimited access to information, and can retrieve files, documents, and photos at will.

However, users of Filecoin would see their stored data distributed and decentralized, making it pretty much impossible for someone to get in and grab something. Information would be totally secure thanks to the power of blockchain.

Despite Steves’ optimism, he also cited several concerns in his report about cryptocurrencies. One was the potential that stolen digital cash would disappear forever because governments don’t have much of an incentive right now to go after criminals.

He also wrote about the potential for criminals to get more than 50% of the computing power and then launch an attack against the network, or start hacking virtual currency smartphone wallets to get money illicitly. Some other points included computer hacking to get computing power and the risk of an attack to manipulate cryptocurrency prices.

The report also highlights how progress and general acceptance of cryptocurrency and blockchain have kept paving the way towards a global supercomputer, especially since blockchain still has a rock-solid security record. Steves wrote the “value of a decentralized world computer could potentially become a multi-trillion-dollar industry” as scaling and protocols mature. He expressed excitement at the thought of building something on top of the “secure layer” of blockchain.

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The Rise of Altcoins May Put Pressure on the Bitcoin Price The Rise of Altcoins May Put Pressure on the Bitcoin Price

There has been a major surge in both the popularity and price of bitcoin; however, it is not the only cryptocurrency that is making gains in the current market. Etherium and Litecoin are the other two types of cryptocurrency, commonly termed as altcoins, which has seen a rise in price in the recent days, along with that of bitcoin.

At present, the prices of bitcoin are actually tugging downward, while other altcoins are garnering solid gains. After having set a new record price of $20,000 over the weekend, bitcoin has spiraled down to a level below $18,000. The last session saw 5.3 percent depreciation for bitcoin. It was being sold at $17,450 levels, according to the CoinDesk’s Bitcoin Price Index.

At the same time, bitcoin cash and ether have both reached new record levels by gaining 26.6 and 16.6 percent respectively within the past two days. The top 10 cryptocurrencies, as ranked by market capitalization, have now gone up by at least 6 percent on average during the day and the cryptocurrency industry is now worth more than $630 billion.

Is Bitcoin’s Price Losing Steam?

A detailed analysis of the individual market indicates that cash could be gradually siphoning out of bitcoin into competing cryptocurrencies. For example, bitcoin cash’s strong rally is supported by an increase in volumes on exchanges providing Bitcoin Cash/Bitcoin pairs. The outflow of money from bitcoin into rival currencies is in tandem with the bullish cross cryptocurrency trends of last week.

Bitcoin’s downside in price could, however, be limited because most of the major rival currencies have reported new record highs in the past two days. It is likely that investors may collect the profits gained from alternative currencies and invest a part of that cash back into bitcoin. Even with that step, however, the bulls risk losing control if there is no quick progression in prices, according to the current price analysis.

Why Altcoins are Gaining Strength?

Various analysts have given contrasting viewpoints to explain the rise of the altcoins over the last few days. Some feel that with hedge funds and institutional money initially entering the cryptocurrency market through bitcoins futures has resulted in investors exploring rival cryptocurrencies.

Other analysts feel that the success of altcoins can be attributed to bitcoin’s scalability issues and the absence of Segregated Witness integration by businesses. Leading wallet platforms such as Coinbase and Blockchain, and platforms that predict bitcoin transaction fee, have been advising a transaction fee in the bracket of $10 and $30, due to the bitcoin mempool’s state (mempool is the aggregate size of unconfirmed transactions).

It is, however, uncertain whether the trend of bitcoin sustaining its value and the alternative cryptocurrencies increasing will continue in the mid-term. The dominance index of bitcoin was also under 50 percent in July, as Ethereum’s popularity surged. It recovered throughout August and September and peaked at 62 percent.

The Surge in the Value of Ethereum

The value of Ethereum’s currency is rising in parallel with Litecoin and Bitcoin. Etherium’s currency, referred to as Ether, which was launched in 2015, has risen by over 6,800 percent since the beginning of the year. The price of cryptocurrency Ether is at a high of $625.25 at present (with taxes being lowered, it may go much higher along with the job growth numbers but this is another topic!), despite the drama of the CryptoKitties, as per the data provided by CoinMarketCap.

The year 2018 is likely to witness a whole range of new regulatory necessities. Financial institutions will launch new products in the blockchain to make compliance simpler (though you probably do not want to ask Harry Solomon from that funny show Third Rock From the Sun or Michael Kelso from That 70s Show for any advice on this – that could put you in a rough spot if you listened to them!), and this is also why the Ethereum blockchain is rising on the popularity scale.

Ethereum has always had a positive image, unlike Bitcoin, and it has also risen to the second rank of popular digital currencies. The success behind Ethereum is attributed to its speed, just like Litecoin. It is also thought to be more impactful than Bitcoin because the transaction records, or blocks, can be generated much more rapidly in the case of Ethereum. Not a bad deal for them!


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Bitcoin in 2018: The Challenges of Scaling Bitcoin in 2018: The Challenges of Scaling

Bitcoin has witnessed an exponential price escalation this year and the cryptocurrency is now ready to explore newer horizons in 2018. However, the jury is still out on how it will progress from here. It does look like its 2018 will do better than the ACA health care law which has failed America and Americans and unlike bitcoin, is not rising in value but this is another topic.

At the heart of bitcoin’s future success and sustainability lies the question of whether or not it will continue to garner a similar level of interest and attention from the investors.

Some even anticipate that bitcoin will fall prey to its own popularity as newer cryptocurrencies emerge that provide a respite from the relentless rise of bitcoin and actually have better features (bitcoin was the first but it does not have all the attributes that some more newer virtual coins are offering). However, the future cannot be predicted, especially in case of bitcoin whose fate changes every day, according to those displeased with its glorious present.

George Bernard Shaw famously said that the progress of humanity depends on the unreasonable man who tries to adapt the world to himself, as opposed to a reasonable one who adapts himself to the world around him. Bitcoin continues to ride on the back of that proverbial ‘unreasonable man’ (read: unreasonable investor or believer in bitcoin).

Scaling Bitcoin

A leading conference hosted by the blockchain industry in collaboration with Stanford University in early November this year tackled the fundamental issue regarding bitcoin’s spectacular growth.

All attendees of this conference, “Scaling Bitcoin,” were unanimous in their opinion that the biggest obstacle in the way of bitcoin’s growth is a serious lack of quality developers.

According to Jimmy Song, a developer and a participant at the conference, the principal challenge faced by the nascent cryptocurrency ecosystem lies in training more developers. After watching the latest Star Wars movie, Thor III, Planet of the Apes III, it seems Hollywood needs to train some new writers because these movies were awful unlike Transformers 5 or The Foreigner which were fabulous but let’s get back on track.

Shortage of Dedicated Developers

Aspiring blockchain developers at the conference were introduced to Dev++ workshop that aimed to educate and inspire them about the future of bitcoin and alt coins. One of the key takeaways from the conference was that the existing few developers do not have the time or capacity to scale bitcoin and blockchain technology.

It is now increasingly evident that for bitcoin to thrive on a sustainable basis, its expansion depends on finding and training an army of solid developers who will bring it closer to its real future, and sooner.

While it is easy to find passionate people who want a piece of innovation that is at the edge of fruition, only the experienced software developers know first-hand that such an evolution happens at a much slower pace.

Ideas are easy to come by at programming level. However, when it comes to its execution, the picture changes dramatically. As one starts building the program, the complications and individual problems start to surface that must be addressed to be able to move forward. This process becomes all the more challenging when it comes to developing something in this time-bound and financially constrained environment.

Focusing on the Right Tasks

As if this isn’t enough, another monumental task that faces blockchain developers is getting the order of business right and arranging tasks as per priority. Blockchain and cryptocurrency is a promising domain with endless possibilities. However, with so many possibilities and variables comes difference of opinion and disagreements.

There could be hundreds of new ideas that are being explored at any given time and some of them may even have gained enough traction. Nevertheless, the reality is that most of these ideas are eventually either thrown away or relegated to make way for more promising endeavors. Such is the nature of new technological developments.

Therefore, experts must continuously debate about the scope of technology and its implementation prospects in order to guide the efforts in the right direction with regard to various risk models.

The Road Ahead

The sharp learning curve in this domain can seem to be overwhelming to aspiring blockchain developers. Many new entrants who want to master software development often feel discouraged and intimidated by the complexity of the task at hand.

However, despite the challenges and hurdles, 2018 will not be a defining year for either cryptocurrency or bitcoin in particular. Their destiny will continue to evolve beyond the limits of any short-term timeframe.

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Top 10 Cryptocurrency Analysts and Token Traders of 2017 Top 10 Cryptocurrency Analysts and Token Traders of 2017

There is no doubting that cryptocurrency and the blockchain technology world as a whole took a major step forward in 2017. Just as the technology and currencies themselves have blown up this year, so have the individuals that analyze and invest in them. They have without a doubt helped with the expansion of the industry in 2017.

This article will take a closer look at 10 of the top traders and analysts of 2017 and why they deserve a place on this list. These 10 individuals are some of the biggest influencers in the blockchain and cryptocurrency industry.


We start off the list by looking at WhalePanda. While yes, the name might not be on that screams “cryptocurrency expert”, they most certainly are. This pseudonymous Twitter account has amassed over 100,000 followers who want first dibs at seeing his wisdom on all things cryptocurrency. While he will look at and comment on mainstream projects, he is also a great place to learn about more innovative niches before they blow up. In addition to providing solid insights, he also does it with a little bit of humor, which can be a rarity in this space.

Tone Vays

Tone Vays has a Wall Street background and years of experience and is now largely focused on Bitcoin. He has over 80,000 followers on Twitter and gives not only great insights, but also the economics and finance side of cryptocurrencies. While he catches plenty of flak for the fact if you went against some of his advice you would actually make money, Tone is a conservative and risk-averse investor in a space where everyone seems to be a risk-taker, so he is a nice change of pace.

Andreas Antonopoulos

Andreas Antonopoulos is not only great for his insights and words on Twitter, but also for his two popular books (Mastering Bitcoin and The Internet of Money) and his public speaking. His speeches are about what cryptocurrencies are and why they are incredibly important. He also hosts a YouTube channel that features several informational videos as well. He uses various mediums to perfection and has hundreds of thousands of loyal followers and fans.

Nick Szabo

Szabo is a true legend in the world of cryptocurrency. While he has repeatedly denied this, there are many out there who claim he is the mysterious Satoshi Nakamoto, who is the one who designed bitcoin. Even if he is not the real Nakamoto like many people think he is, he is still a valuable member of the community. His tweets and retweets are incredible and will surely give you a lot of value.

Michael Novogratz

Novogratz is without a doubt one of the richest major cryptocurrency investors on the planet. Formerly of Goldman Sachs, this former hedge fund manager was ranked by Forbes as a billionaire in 2007 and 2008. Since then, Novogratz has become interested in cryptocurrency and is reported to have 20% of his net worth in crypto. His Twitter feed is full of great advice, insights and his various thoughts about the world of blockchain technology.

Erik Voorhees

Since 2011, Voorhees has been involved in the world of cryptocurrency. He is the CEO of ShapeShift, which is an altcoin and bitcoin exchange. In addition to that, Voorhees has nearly 200,000 followers on Twitter and blesses his followers with great wisdom and insight on all things cryptocurrency. Voorhees is a true pioneer in the industry and is more than worth a follow on Twitter, and his blog is pretty solid too.

Bob Voulgaris

Voulgaris might not be very well known in the cryptocurrency world yet, but will be soon. He is best known as arguably the best NBA bettor on the entire planet and has surely made a ton of cash from that. In addition to that, Voulgaris has been a cryptocurrency invest for over half a decade and has the potential to bring a whole new market and audience to the cryptocurrency world.

Peter Brandt

With 110,00 followers on Twitter and years of experience in the industry, Brandt is a must-follow for those who want to learn the ins and outs of cryptocurrency. He has been wildly successful in nearly everything he does and makes some of the best charts on the planet, to easily follow the trajectory of any coin. He also isn’t afraid to interact with and school the trolls that populate a lot of the cryptocurrency space on Twitter.

Nicola Duke

Despite having 60,000+ followers on Twitter, Duke doesn’t get as much credit as she deserves for all she does for the world of cryptocurrency. She is based in London and her Twitter feed is full of tasty tidbits of insight and advice. However, her best contribution by far are her daily live cryptocurrency analysis and discussion. These appear on her Facebook page (which is also a great place for crypto discussion) and are generally posted on her Twitter as well.

Luke Martin

If you can only follow on cryptocurrency expert, it should be Luke Martin. Better known as @VentureCoinist, Luke has a ton of experience in the world of finance and cryptocurrency and his goal is to educate others about the space and provide a ton of valuable insights. He tweets often about his thoughts and advice and holds a “coin chat” all about cryptocurrency and is a one-stop-shop for all things cryptocurrency.







If you want to learn more about the industry and get some advice and tips from the best, these 10 individuals are a great place to start. Now, there are dozens and dozens of other worthwhile individuals that could have made this list, so if we missed your favorite, tell us about it in the comments below!


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What’s in store for 2018 ? What's in store for 2018 ?

2017 was a big year for cryptocurrencies and blockchain. A weird one, but a big one. A lot has changed since the start of 2017. David Cassidy, Tom Petty, and Roger Moore were still alive. Russia was still in the 2018 Winter Olympics.

Bitcoin was just at about $1000 dollars, and the overall market cap of all cryptocurrencies was about $17.7 billion dollars. It’s now over $600 billion.

Cryptocurrency investing really changed in 2017. It changed from an activity that was largely on the margins of the financial world to a massive global community filled with jokes, symbols and idiosyncrasies.

But even as blockchain and cryptocurrency have fully hit the mainstream, there’s still been a good amount of unique, strange, interesting, and downright absurd projects that have incorporated crypto in 2017.

One of these endeavours actually seems pretty serious. Anton Doos’ Lotus Network hopes to take advantage of the blockchain to roll out something called Karma Tokens. These tokens would be used to essentially cut down on corruption in the Buddhist world by giving students a way to pay teachers or a school, and then make sure their money is being used for good.

Doos says “any religious institution that accepts donations or deals with money ought to be using a cryptocurrency…in order to establish a transparent audit trail for its followers.”

In addition, cryptocurrency and blockchain became the focal point for several interesting artistic expressions over the past year. One of these projects was called Artists Re:Thinking the Blockchain, which was published by a U.K. arts and technology center called Furtherfield. The book is a combination of speculative fiction, interviews, illustrations, and theory that delves into an eclectic mix of topics- including an overview of mining in contemporary art and the Hippocratic oath of a blockchain developer.

One of the novellas associated with the anthology is called Bad Shibe, which is a story published in 2017 about a young shibe who begins to “question the underpinnings of the tokenized-reputation system that governs their world.”

Another artistic project called Max Dovey’s Respiratory Miner lets people use a spirometry to mine Monero, (with the hashrate adjusted for the number of breaths). The interactive exhibit is scheduled to be shown again in January 2018, and was recently set up at Generator Projects in Dundee.

2017 also featured a laundry list of weird, useless, and generally scammy tokens in all shapes and forms. One of the stranger ones was the aptly named “Useless Ethereum Token” (UET). The project raised 310.445 ether after calling itself the first “100 percent honest ethereum ICO.” The project’s whitepaper discussed the necessity in this day and age to “entirely collapse the distinctions between ‘fraud’ and ‘performance art’”.

Some of 2017’s more creative token offerings also included BTCwizard’s “Initial Troll Offering”, which had a goal to give the Bitcoin wizard a full-page ad in the Wall Street Journal.

One of the year’s seemingly strange blockchain projects actually made a lot of people very happy. When cute digital kittens made their first appearance in the CryptoKitties game at the end of October, no one really gave them much thought. But the cats, which are really just small bits of code on the Ethereum blockchain, started to take off in a really big way.

The game soon became immensely popular and started to clog up the entire Ethereum network. CryptoKitties accounted for just about 11% of all network traffic on Ethereum in early December. A massive influx of users on the platform quickly turned CryptoKitties into a virtual kitten mill, and some of the cats have even sold for thousands of dollars. The total dollar amount of virtual transactions has already easily eclipsed $1 million.

One entrepreneur from Austin Texas said in mid-December that his time spent on CryptoKitties had netted him more money than what he has made from his IRA retirement account. Even WikiLeaks jumped onto the CryptoKitties train, saying just a few days ago that those looking to support could buy some of the offspring from the purebred WikiLeaks CryptoKitties.

The team also announced plans to send two of the first-generation cats to President Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. They specifically noted that ‘Trump’s Tender Tabby’ would “become federal property to be enjoyed by future presidents via custodians at the US National Archives” since it would have to be declared as a gift by the President.

Many are hoping that 2018 is a big year for cryptocurrencies and blockchain. Let’s hope it’s also equally as creative as 2017.

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The Fed’s Reckless Monetary Policy Caused Cryptocurrencies to Swell: Ron Paul The Fed’s Reckless Monetary Policy Caused Cryptocurrencies to Swell: Ron Paul

Former Congressman and Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul (but he is really a Libertarian who does not even believe we should fight terrorism and we should ignore WMD being used in the world – but he is still closer to the mark than Nancy Pelosi and Bernie Sanders but this is another story) has now said that the unprecedented rise in the prices of cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin has been fueled by the faulty monetary policies of the US government.

Paul remarked in a recent interview with CNBC (which is known for putting out fake news – perhaps not as bad as CNN though) that in his opinion the cryptocurrency phenomenon is a reflection on the disastrous monetary dollar system in the country.

Paul pointed out the massive amount of credit that has been created in the system through the Quantitative Easing (QE) process (Alan Greenspan is infamous for this and Greenspan was a massive contributor to the 2008 financial crisis). An aggressive credit creation through QE to enable central banks to purchase government debt as well as other financial assess in a bid to boost lending and strengthen the market is at least partly responsible for the boom in cryptocurrencies, according to Paul.

Paul further asserted his belief that if the government had not recklessly used the QE route, cryptocurrencies would probably still exist. But certainly they would not have turned into an exponential bubble that is currently visible. In Paul’s view the cryptocurrency craze is an incidental effect of the multiple quantitative easing of the central banks to cope with the perils of the last financial crisis.

According to Paul, the fundamental economic issues the country faces are enormous. People are desperately looking everywhere for avenues to invest. Otherwise why people would invest in bonds that are paying negative rates of interest and why they would purchase stocks in the hope that ‘this time it is different.’

Paul’s argument is that the gigantic bubble in cryptocurrencies is more dangerous because it is extremely difficult to calculate its true value. The largest of all cryptocurrencies, bitcoin has seen its value multiply at an exponential rate.

While Paul has been unable to put his finger on when exactly a plunge in cryptocurrencies or in the stock market could occur, he feels that the danger is for real. Both the bubbles are huge in the sense that they have arisen due to excessive credit in the market. However, in Paul’s opinion, the price curves indicate that the cryptocurrency curve is currently more threatening.

Nothing is more threatening though than America’s debt and America’s entitlement programs but this is another subject.

These comments of the former US representative are, in fact, not so surprising, considering that he has largely favored cryptocurrencies at various points in the past. Paul had said in October that although he does not consider bitcoin as some kind of real money, but he does believe that the US government must relook at how it regulates its activities involving technology. He further said at the time that if people choose to use cryptocurrencies, the government ought to stay out of it.

The former Congressman had also recently launched a Twitter poll asking people that if given a choice of receiving a gift of $10,000 value they were required to hold on for a certain time period, would they choose dollars, gold, or bitcoin. More than half the respondents in that poll chose bitcoin.

Interestingly, Ron Paul has also recently operated as a commercial endorser of Coin IRA, a bitcoin based retirement instrument. In his endorsement for this cryptocurrency company, which belongs to the Goldco group, Paul asked Americans to see the advantages of entrusting their savings to this bitcoin based retirement account firm.

Ron Paul has been well known in the past for promoting the ideology of libertarianism, particularly during the time of his multiple runs for the president’s office. Paul has almost always held a different worldview of things and voiced different opinions than many of his fellow politicians. He has shown his inclination in the past for alt currencies and has been unrelenting in his criticism of how large and unwieldy the US government has grown.

Furthermore, Paul has frequently spoken against the systems of central banking in the US, and believes that gold (and in recent times, cryptocurrencies), can be the instruments to defeat the government’s monopoly on money.

As Paul said in his acclaimed book ‘End the Fed’, it is not a coincidence that the century of war has also been the century of central banking. Well, every century has been a century of war really.


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