Bitcoin has received record investment funding in Q1 of 2015. SpeedyBitcoins.co.uk has ceased trading indefinitely after losing their banking provider. Cryptsy has been accused of involvement with GAW and PayCoin, and many more top stories from April 27.
Bitcoin's 2015 Q1 figures set new investment record
The first quarter of 2015 was the most successful ever in Bitcoin’s record of attracting new investment capital. Over US$229 million was raised by start-ups in the digital currency space, including a record-breaking US$116 million that was invested in stealth start-up 21. Other figures in CoinDesk’s “State of Bitcoin” report however point to slowing consumer adoption in the wider picture.
“The collected data indicates that the first quarter of 2015 was the most popular ever in terms of the dollar-value of venture capital investments made into the bitcoin ecosystem. That data point, however, is skewed by a single investment — the $116 round million invested into 21, a company that remains at least partially occluded in terms of its ambitions. Aside from that single investment, first quarter venture investment was on par — $113 million — with the preceding fourth quarter.”
SpeedyBitcoin.co.uk ceases trading indefinitely
UK based exchange service SpeedyBitcoin has suspended its trading following problems with its banking partner. The three-year-old digital currency start-up explains that it’s still looking for a suitable financial institution to step in to provide banking services, but the tone of this morning’s announcement does not seem optimistic that this will happen quickly.
“Unfortunately owing to continued uncertainty in the crypto-financial market sector, our banking institution has been unable to continue to provide service to us.
While their decision is regrettable, it is understandable and the service and support they have provided thus far has always met or exceeded our expectations.”
Cryptsy currency exchange implicated in GAW scandal
US based digital currency exchange Cryptsy has become involved in controversy surrounding GAW Mining and PayCoin. After being sold a PayCoin “prime controller” for US$1, the exchange is now able to mine the altcoin at double the rate of normal coin holders in the proof-of-stake system. Originally held only by PayCoin itself, and more recently by non-profit organizations, the continued existence of these higher-stake “primer controllers” and their sale to private exchanges is a sore point for many who invested in Josh Garza’s PayCoin.
“Last week, members of the Cryptsy organization met with the current Prime Node managers to review the status of the new wallet release. During this meeting, the Paycoin Core Development team determined it would benefit the health and decentralization of the coin to transfer one of the Prime Nodes to Cryptsy (see bill of sale below).”
David Berger, CEO of the Digital Currency Council, suggests Bitcoin professionals need to be more trustworthy
Supporting the organization’s goal of supporting individuals working within the digital currency space, David Berger CEO of the Digital Currency Council has argued that these workers need to focus on the trustworthiness of their positions in the wider system. Unlike the trustless system of Bitcoin’s technical underpinnings, the Council wants to foster more accountability and trust among these professionals.
“Our members sit atop the technology. The technology may not rely on trust, but our members must foster trust with their clients and peers to be successful. The technology works, and amazing applications are being built atop it. It’s robust and every technical trend line is going up. We’re focused on the people — supporting them as they step up from “Bitcoiner” to Digital Currency Professional.”
Austrian museum of contemporary art purchases digital artwork using bitcoins
Acquiring a limited edition digital artwork by Harm van den Dorpel that had been placed for sale on the CoinTemporary web gallery, the Austrian museum of contemporary art (MAK) has paid for the work in bitcoins. The infinitely looping OSX screensaver will join the institutions collection of contemporary art in Vienna where its provenance will guaranteed by records placed on the blockchain.
“To date, the MAK – Austrian Museum of Applied Arts / Contemporary Art, is the first museum in the world to have acquired a decentrally authenticated digital artwork with digital currency. The museum sees this as a new form of collecting in the digital age and will exhibit van den Dorpel’s work in an upcoming show called 24/7 - The Human Condition.”
Lamassu Bitcoin ATM provider plans service charge
Lamassu, the manufacturer of the popular Douro Bitcoin ATM, has announced plans to begin charging its customers a monthly service charge in order to access the company’s technical and customer support networks. Planning to use the funds to pay for software updates, ATM owners will now be asked to pay up to US$100 a month for access to the support features.
“Depending on the amount of machines you have deployed, your monthly fee will range between US$100 and US$80 per machine. The more Lamassu Bitcoin ATM’s under your control, the lower the fee per machine becomes. Plus, if you pay the service fee upfront for an entire year, you will receive a 5% discount on the total amount.”
Dash suggests a decentralized funding structure
Arguing that current funding models for digital currencies are too rewarding for early-investors and without enough ongoing incentives, Dash, formerly Darkcoin, has proposed a more decentralized long-term strategy. Through a larger paid network of nodes for the network, Dash hopes more individuals will see a reason to become involved in the altcoin.
“Most coins only reward the miners for the maintenance of the ledger, leaving nothing for the full nodes that also do important tasks for the network. Dash, in contrast, shares the block reward between the miners and the Masternodes, which is its take on the classical full nodes.
Along with being incentivizing the network is healthy with around 2,400 Masternodes at the time being and it can ask these nodes to do even more things for the coin. In Dash's case, nodes take care of the anonymization of coins and of transaction validation for instant confirmations.”
Bankymoon proposes Bitcoin-funded smart meters
South African start-up Bankymoon has proposed a Bitcoin-fueled smart meter as a possible use for the digital currency. Presenting at the Bitcoin Conference South Africa, the company referred to the technology as a possible “killer app”, and imagines an implementation at a core level of the power grid.
“Modern “smart grids” permit efficient management of supply and demand, with Internet-connected “smart meters” that react to changing conditions and can be topped in real-time in case of need. According to [co-founder] Gamaroff, by 2023 most power grids will be smart: 80 percent of the grids in the United States, 60 percent in Europe and 45 percent in the Asia Pacific region.”
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