Tuesday, January 16, 2018

IOTA a new cryptocoin and tangle a new technology

IOTA stands for "Internet of Things Application". The platform is designed to provide secure communications and payments between all the different items on the Internet of Things (IoT). The name also relates to small things communicating within the IoT.

IOTA and the Internet of Things (IoT)
As noted, IOTA, founded in 2015 by David Senstebe, Sergey Ivcanchegio, Dominik Schiener and Dr. Serquei Popov, is designed as a secure payments and communications platform for machines that are part of the Internet of Things.
IOTA does not use the traditional blockchain technology of most coins such as bitcoin, ethereum and many others but a special type of directed acylic graph (DAG) technology called tangle.
The advantages of tangle versus the blockchain
Unlike transactions on blockchains, such as those involving bitcoin, tangle transactions are free regardless of size. Confirmation times are quite fast. The tangle system can handle an unlimited number of transactions simultaneously, unlike bitcoin.
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Iota also has the advantage of not needing any miners, as the authentication process just involves the users linked together in the tangle. This does away with the costs of paying miners in the iota coin for their work in solving mathematical problems to authenticate transactions. Everyone who initiates a transaction must verify two other random transactions.
Compared to a blockchain system, the more people who are using the tangle system, the faster it is. Also, unlike bItcoins, all Iota coins already exist, so mining the currency is not required. However, the supply of Iota coins is huge.
The number of Iota coins and units
There is a fixed supply of 2,779,530,283,277,761 Iota coins.
The smallest unit is the iota named after the ninth letter of the Greek alphabet or 1i. A Kiloiota or one Kiota. Ki, is equal to 1,000 i. A million i or 1 Miota is called a Megaiota 0r 1Mi. A billion is a Gigalota or one GIota, 1Gi. A trillion is a Teraota or 1 Tiota, 1Ti. Finally there is the Petaiota, or 1 Piota, 1Pi. The base unit for trading on excahanges is the Miota (Mi). The symbol on exchanges is MIOTA.
An example of how Iota might work
Consider an electric vehicle (EV) coming into a charging station. The method of payment would be using IOTA. Both the EV and the charging station would be able to understand the IOTA protocol used to facilitate the payment. The EV and the charging station are both items in the IoT and are able to use IOTA to communicate and make payments.
IOTA already has collaboration with Deutsche Telecom, Microsoft and Fujitsu. Obviously, big players in the technical area must see potentiality in the platform.
Present price of Iota

As I write this the present price of Iota (symbol MIOTA) is $4.05. This is down considerably from a high of over five dollars in December of 2017 but is a huge improvement over its price during November when it was just around 39 cents.
Iota is one of the top ten cryptocurrencies rated by market value. It is number ten with a market value of $11,297,289,654

Previously published in Digital Journal

Monday, January 15, 2018

Cryptocoin Stellar has a stellar start to the New Year

What could become the hottest digital coin of 2018 climbed in price from Friday December 29th 2017 more than 65 percent to become the 8th largest cryptocoin by capitalization on Tuesday January 2nd with a market cap of $10 billion.
On the same day, the price rose 17.5 percent to 56.4 cents.
Stellar is an open-source protocol for value exchange. It was founded in 2014 led by Jed McCaleb and Joyce Kim with a number of board members. The protocol is supported by the non-profit Stellar Development Foundation.
Wikipedia describes the design of Stellar as follows:Stellar is an open-source protocol for exchanging money. Servers run a software implementation of the protocol, and use the Internet to connect to and communicate with other Stellar servers, forming a global value exchange network. Each server stores a record of all “accounts” on the network. These records are stored in a database called the “ledger”. Servers propose changes to the ledger by proposing “transactions”, which move accounts from one state to another by spending the account’s balance or changing a property of the account. All of the servers come to agreement on which set of transactions to apply to the current ledger through a process called “consensus”. The consensus process happens at a regular interval, typically every 2 to 4 seconds. This keeps each server’s copy of the ledger in sync and identical.
At its launch Stellar was based on Ripple. However, the protocol was later updated with a new consensus algorithm. The code for the new algorithm was released in April of 2015
The official name of the coin associated with Stellar is lumen, XLM.
Real world applications of Stellar
Several nonprofit organizations and businesses are using Stellar for their financial infrastructure particularly in the developing world
The Praekelt Foundation, has integrated Stellar into Yumi that is an open-source messaging app that allows young girls in sub-Saharan Africa to save money on airtime credits.
Another example is Oradian, a cloud-based banking software company, that is planning to use Stellar to connect microfinance institutions in Nigeria.
In December of last year Stellar announced more partnerships in the Philippines, India and West Africa.
In October of 2017, Stellar announced it had partnered with IBM to increase the speed of global payments. Consulting firm Deloitte is also a partner.
Stellar's transaction speed is very fast
In contrast to coins such as bitcoin, transactions through Stellar take only two to five seconds. Users can quickly exchange government-backed fiat currencies such as U.S. dollars into Euros and vice versa.
Jed McCaleb
McCaleb is an American programmer. He is widely known for creating peer-to-peer technologies such as eDonkey used for sharing files.
He was also involved with the large Japanese bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox but it was later sold to Mark Kapeles. The exchange eventually was closed after many of its bitcoins were stolen and the exchange filed for bankruptcy after scandalously bad if not criminal management problems.
In 2011 McCaleb founded another company Ripple that also focuses on payments and rose considerably in value last year. As a recent Digital Journal article reports Ripple is now the second largest cryptocoin in terms of market capitalization. McCaleb left Ripple in 2013 and went on to lead the development of Stellar in 2014. Ripple is also working with financial institutions in South Korea and Japan using the ripple coin XRP.
McCaleb is now focused on Stellar. The Stellar website claims that it operates on a non-profit basis. It covers operating costs through selling some of its digital currency holdings and through donations.

Previously published in the Digital Journal

IOTA a new cryptocoin and tangle a new technology

IOTA stands for "Internet of Things Application". The platform is designed to provide secure communications and payments between ...