China Unironically Bans Blockchain Slurs as Crypto Launch Looms

Authoritarian China has unironically banned criticism of blockchain technology. The move comes after President Xi Jinping publicly called for more blockchain research. The crypto industry remains divided about China’s sudden pivot. In one of the biggest U-turns in crypto history, China professed its love for blockchain. Now, the nation is going as far as to penalize anyone who dares oppose it. Chinese President  Xi Jinping recently rocked the crypto industry with a speech exalting blockchain, praising the economic benefits and efficiencies available through the technology. The bitcoin price soared in…

Hyperledger Blockchain Group Weighs Changes to Fix Election Issues

The Hyperledger blockchain consortium’s technical steering committee (TSC) is discussing potential changes to its elections in hopes of boosting voter turnout. On Wednesday, Arnaud Le Hors, a blockchain staff member at IBM and TSC chair for 2019-2020, placed on the committee’s agenda five proposals to spread awareness and encourage participation in the annual elections. The suggestions came from Hyperledger executive director Brian Behlendorf, who had sent them to the TSC mailing list. The proposals were added to a backlog of agenda items concerning governance, including a motion to add four seats…

Hedera Hashgraph, Touted as High-Speed Blockchain Alternative, Goes Live

Hedera Hashgraph has launched its long-awaited public network, backed by some of the world’s largest corporations and promising faster transactions and greater capacity to scale than any blockchain to date. Since December 2018, the network had been available in a testing environment to a small group of corporations and developers. As of 00:00 UTC Tuesday, anyone can open an account or build a decentralized app (dapp) on the hashgraph, which is similar to a blockchain but uses a different mechanism to achieve consensus about the state of the ledger. With…

IBM Official Elected Chair of Hyperledger Blockchain Tech Board

The Hyperledger technical steering committee (TSC) has elected another IBM official as its chair amid controversy over the tech giant’s increased representation on the panel. Arnaud Le Hors, a senior technical staff member for blockchain and web open technologies at IBM, succeeds Dan Middelton, a principal engineer with Intel, according to an email sent to the TSC mailing list Wednesday.  “I’m happy to have the chair role in good hands,” Middelton wrote to the list. A year ago Middelton replaced Christopher Ferris, CTO of open technology at IBM, who had…

Swiss Regulator Grants First-Ever Banking Licenses to 2 Blockchain Firms

By CCN Markets: Blockchain projects around the world have been seeking approval, or for that matter, concrete guidance, from regulators such as FINMA for the last several years. FINMA, the Swiss financial regulatory watchdog, has approved two requests for banking licenses. The two licenses were issued to blockchain businesses. These regulatory strides are not likely to directly impact other jurisdictions but more so will impact how regulation is formed everywhere else. Only time will tell how these regulations impact innovation. What a great day for Switzerland as a #Blockchain and…

English Champions Manchester City Unveils Official ‘Blockchain Gaming Partner’ – CCN Markets

By CCN Markets: UK football club Manchester City announced a blockchain gaming partnership with South Korean sports service developer, Superbloke. The alliance is another example of the ongoing mainstreaming of blockchain, the technology underpinning bitcoin. Online gaming is mainstreaming blockchain Superbloke will incorporate Man City players into its “FC Superstars” online soccer game. The game allows users can build a digital team by trading and training Manchester City digital player cards using real-life football match stats. Manchester City signed a blockchain gaming partnership with South Korean sports service developer, Superbloke.…

Andrew Yang’s Blockchain Voting Scheme Is Unbelievably Dumb

Andrew Yang wants to mandate blockchain-secured smartphone voting. That’s an unbelievably dumb idea from the 2020 presidential candidate. | Source: Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images / AFP By CCN Markets: Andrew Yang wants your vote. And if he gets it, he promises that when you vote for him again in 2024, you’ll do it on a smartphone. And that the vote will be recorded on a blockchain. According to the 2020 presidential hopeful’s website, Yang believes that his “Modernize Voting” policy will increase voter participation and reduce “tampering” and “hacking.”…

IBM, Tata Become First Big Techs to Back Hedera Hashgraph Blockchain

IBM and Indian telecom company Tata Communications have joined the governance council of Hedera Hashgraph, a public blockchain network for enterprises. Now, eight of the 39 available spots for governing council members are filled, the network announced Monday. “Our goal is to create the most decentralized governing body of any of the major public platforms,” Mance Harmon, CEO of Hedera, told Coindesk. “We’re covering multiple industries … and we’re wanting global coverage.” Hedera claims its flavor of distributed ledger technology (DLT), which works differently than blockchains, can facilitate micropayments and…

IBM Files Patent for a Blockchain-Based Web Browser

A new patent application from IBM describes a blockchain-based web browser. Filed on August 6 by the United States Patent and Trademark Office, IBM’s patent is for a web browser backed by a peer-to-peer network. The browser collects pre-specified information from web browsing sessions, according to the patent. The information is then transferred to a network of peer-to-peer nodes for collection and storage. Information collection depends on the type of browsing experience chosen. Browsing on a work computer versus a personal browser would demand different settings, for example.  Types of potentially…