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Update of IRDs guidance on crypto assets

September 8, 2020
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Inland Revenue has provided an update on its guidance of how it treats what it calls “cryptoassets” at: https://www.ird.govt.nz/cryptoassets A link to the IRD media release can be found at: https://media.ird.govt.nz/articles/new-inland-revenue-guidance-on-cryptoassets/ The high level summary is: There are no special tax rules for cryptoassets in New Zealand. The guidance clarifies how ordinary income tax rules apply to cryptoassets to help people understand their tax obligations. Essentially, cryptoassets are treated as a form of property for tax purposes. What people make from selling, trading or exchanging crypto-assets is taxable
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Catching up with Jerome Faury from Centrapay

July 22, 2020
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A short chat with CEO of CentraPay Jerome Faury. “Who’s gonna pay with a credit card?” was the response Jerome got when he cold called manufacturers of parking and vending machines back in the mid 2000’s offering credit card payments. Fast forward 15 yrs, he’s back at it offering crypto payments with Centrapay. Learn about digital assets, pocket vouchers and the Sylo wallet. Also check out where you can by coke with crypto with this neat map: https://centrapay.com/merchant-acceptance-locations/ Jerome also explained digital currencies to John Campbell as well.
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Error: Callback was already called – Ganache

July 9, 2020
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OpenZeppelin has some neat docs to show how to create, deploy and interact with smart contracts centered around installing node, using the OpenZeppelin libraries, compiling via CLI, and deploying via Ganache which is a local blockchain environment for development and testing. Some of you may remember TestRPC. Ganache is the new name of TestRPC.  The TestRPC quickly became more powerful than simply a blockchain environment used for testing. To stay with the sweet Truffle brand, we decided to rename it Ganache, as Ganache is (often) the core of your favorite chocolate truffle. It’s a much catchier name (and a much tastier one too). https://www.trufflesuite.com/blog/testrpc-is-now-ganache The problem though is when you follow the docs at https://docs.openzeppelin.com/learn/deploying-and-interacting and run: npx ganache-cli --deterministic to get a list of all the available accounts, you might encounter this error: Ganache CLI v6.9.1 (ganache-core: 2.10.2)Error: Callback was already called. The problem is because you probably have node v14 installed. Run: node -v to check. For me, I installed node initially with the brew command brew install node which downloaded the latest version which was v14.5.0 The reason is an issue related to ganache-core’s internals not yet being Node v14 compatible. https://github.com/trufflesuite/ganache-cli/issues/732 Workaround Install Node v12 for […]
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Solidity events

June 30, 2020
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In Solidity, firing or emitting events is a handy tool that you can employ not only to log messages for simple debugging but more importantly Dapps or anything connected to the Ethereum JSON-RPC API can listen to these events and act accordingly. Events can also be indexed so that the event history is searchable later as well. Here is a very simple example of creating an event. pragma solidity ^0.6.0; contract EmitEvent { event log(); function triggerLog() public { emit log(); } } You first have to declare the event and then give it a name along with the parameters you want to pass around. The above example does not have any parameters. The example below has one parameter. pragma solidity ^0.6.0; contract EmitEvent { event log(string _logmessage); function triggerLog() public { emit log("hi"); } } The event gets displayed in the logs of the transactions in remix. Watch the video below for a walkthrough.
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Which is cheaper, a public function or an external function?

June 17, 2020
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Here is a quick video explaining which function is cheaper, a public function or an external function in Solidity. I’ve also included a demonstration to prove it as well.
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The way training should be … free

May 28, 2020
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I got this email in my inbox recently about free training material from Corda, which is an “open source blockchain platform for business“. I decided to take a look and the content at https://training.corda.net/ is very well designed and presented. It is definitely a lot more user friendly than the documentation! It provides key concepts at the start and interestingly enough put blockchain fundamentals at the very end. I would have had it at the top as well but assume that because it wasn’t Corda specific, it is like an Appendix of sorts. There is an introduction to your first code or “CorDapp” which is very important, and then introduction to libraries and SDK’s because there is usually no need to write things from scratch nowadays. It jumps into Corda specific details and then rounds off with a nice summary. The content is very high quality and neatly packaged as well. The only thing I would add is a Hello World type application for the absolute newbie (which also serves as a system check), and a stronger “Where to next” section. The Corda blog is also very informative and consistent so hats off to them. This is all self paced learning […]
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Your Site Has Been Hacked

April 16, 2020
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I received the following email recently and initially was very worried. I scrolled down and saw the demand for USD $2000 in Bitcoin! They wanted it sent to this address “1Q1DF9rJS6fNDSpiV2iEA46BS1mNEaELtC”. (FYI: The address is empty). Firstly, the site in question has no sensitive information there. In fact, it is just a new blogging site with only 4 or 5 blog posts so this made me raise my eyebrow and not be too concerned. However, if it was a more important website, I would have been a lot more nervous only to calm down having seen this Google search. I then sent an email to my hosting provider and they confirmed that this was a scam. Thanks for getting in touch regarding this. Unfortunately we’ve beenseeing an increase in these type of scam attempts but rest assured it isjust scam. A security scan shows there is no indication that your site isvulnerable or that it has been compromised. As such you can safely ignorethe threat message. What the scammers do is use a template and automate the email replacing the website URL for each site. They typically use the contact us form websites usually have and shame on me for […]
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Installing Hyperledger Besu

January 18, 2020
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Installing the Enterprise Ethereum client Hyperledger Besu may seem daunting at first but the key is to break it down step by step. The following is a set of short videos demonstrating how this can be done. a) System Requirements You’ll ideally need 8Gb of Ram and a lot of hard drive space. Around 3Tb if you want to do a full sync with Ethereum mainnet. b) Install Besu on MacOS Installing on a Mac is very quick. You’ll need Homebrew (https://brew.sh) and also Java 11 or above (brew cask install adoptopenjdk) Then all you do is run: brew tap hyperledger/besu brew install besubrew -- version c) Uninstalling Besu on MacOS Here are the shortcut commands to uninstall Besu: brew cask uninstall adoptopenjdk brew untap hyperledger/besu brew uninstall besu d) Building Besu from source Here are the shortcut commands to install Besu from source: > git clone --recursive https://github.com/hyperledger/besu.git > cd besu > ./gradlew installDist > cd build/install/besu > ./bin/besu
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Installing Besu quick commands

December 25, 2019
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besu --version //check if Besu is installedbrew uninstall besu //uninstall Besubrew install besu //install Besu (assuming you have already tapped it first with brew tap hyperledger/besu)brew cask install adoptopenjdk Starting Besu To start Besu, just type besu This will start Besu pointing it to mainnet. This means that the blockchain will start to synchronise with the real Ethereum blockchain. A database folder (where the blockchain will be stored) will appear at usr/local/Cellar/besu/1.3.8/ which is where homebrew installed besu. For testing purposes, start Besu with the network flag of dev besu --network=dev The other option is to use a config file and then specific the network, as well as other parameters there. data-path="besudata"network="dev"miner-enabled=trueminer-coinbase="0xfe3b557e8fb62b89f4916b721be55ceb828dbd73"rpc-http-cors-origins=["all"]host-whitelist=["*"]rpc-ws-enabled=truerpc-http-enabled=true Then reference the config file with: besu --config-file="/User/sean/config.toml" Note that flags in the command line override flags in the config file. For a complete list of other command line options, visit: http://besu.hyperledger.org/en/stable/Reference/CLI/CLI-Syntax/ Checking Besu network To confirm the network you are connected to, you want to query the Besu API for the net_version. curl -X POST --data '{"jsonrpc":"2.0","method":"net_version","params":[],"id":1}' localhost:8545 You can find out what net_version does along with all the other API options here. However, in order for this to work, Besu must be started with the flag: […]
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Crypto wallets live webinar

December 16, 2019
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One of the first steps when embarking on your blockchain journey is to understand about wallets because when you get your bitcoins, ether or any other token for that matter, where are you going to store them? It can be a bit confusing when you first come across terms such as hot wallets, cold wallets, HD wallets, paper wallets, or hardware wallets. I’ll be hosting a webinar this Thursday at 6am AEST running through all you need to know about wallets and more. Yes, there are thousands of YouTube videos on this topic but I’ll be speaking from my own personal experience on these matters and not what I read in some book or web article. As a bonus, we’ll also have a special guest from MetaMask, Ethereum’s most popular wallet as well. You’ll also have the chance to ask some questions as well! (It is a live webinar after all!). The intended audience are those curious about the blockchain space but have yet to venture into it, or beginners who may have some experience but want to learn some more. The webinar agenda is roughly 20 minutes about wallets, 20 minutes from our MetaMask guest and then 15 minutes […]
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Strategic planning in Atlanta

December 12, 2019
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Academy decided to hold a strategic offsite in Atlanta to discuss how to tackle the OneMillionDevs initiative and strategically plan for 2020. There is always a lot going on in the blockchain space and it is always good to get up to speed by discussing and sharing the latest and greatest with my esteemed peers. It was also a great time to reflect on the year that has been and to start planning for the new year ahead. It was also an opportunity to connect with one another, especially since we all work remotely. We cosied up in a very large house (courtesy of AirBnb) that had 9 bed rooms! Houses in America are big!!! We got down to work straight away with 3 days of intense brain power workout. We even cancelled our planned visit to Coke world. The team was always fun. Here we are looking lost outside a place called “Slutty Vegan”. The queue was too long so we decided to go elsewhere. The last group dinner on the final night. A fantastic group of humans.
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What is constantinoplefixblock?

November 25, 2019
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If you have ever looked inside a blockchain genesis file, typically called genesis.json or in the case of a private network, privateNetworkGenesis.json, you will have seen lots of configuration parameters. Some are obvious but others a little more mysterious. Take for example this genesis file for a private network: Have you ever wondered what constantinoplefixblock is? It turns out that these are called “Milestone Blocks”. In a public network, these specifies the block at which the network changed protocols. For example, In a private network though, the milestone block defines the protocol version for the network  so it is normally set to 0 (zero) meaning version 0 of the Constantinople protocol. In other words, your chain won’t be hard-forking for these changes, so leave as 0 (zero). Another interesting note in the private genesis file is fixeddifficulty which is used to specify a fixed difficulty in private networks using Ethash which overrides the difficulty field.
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The blockchain decade

November 24, 2019
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During Singapore Fintech week, I had the opportunity to talk about what has happened in the last 11 years (it’s close enough to a decade!) of blockchains and where things are going. There was more than two people there I promise! 🙂 We all know that nobody likes to sit at the front! After the talk, I then provided a live demo on how to create a Singaporean Token with a very simple smart contract created and compiled in Remix and then deployed to Testnet. Then using MetaMask to see the tokens and transfer it to a member of the audience. It was also great to catch up with Vinay Mohan who runs the Singapore office and look forward to working more closely with the Singaporean team.
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Singapore Fintech Festival

November 19, 2019
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The Singapore Fintech Festival this year was enormous. It covered six halls, more than double of what it was last year and there were some big budget stalls from some very large companies. Not to be outdone, blockchain and crypto companies had a presence also. ConsenSys was located at several places. We had a dedicated spot set up in hall 3 along with presences at the OpenNodes booth and at the Ubin booth also. Joe Lubin was also present being interviewed on the tokenisation of everything in a fire side chat. Apparently there were over 60,000 participants over the week long event. I’m not sure how accurate those numbers are but there certainly was a lot of people! It was great to catch up with the rest of the team and also to keep at the forefront of this technology and other dominant players in the market.
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CeBIT Australia and Blockchain

October 30, 2019
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CEBIT Australia is a showcase of the dynamic merger of business with technology, where it’s going and how it can help you in your daily job. I went along to see the “blockchain”component of it which was relatively small but nevertheless good to see something blockchain related. There were three sessions on day 2 of CeBIT. A Blockchain 101 workshop, which wasn’t really a workshop but a 50 min talk of the blockchain landscape, and two panels. Tim actually did a very good job with his engaging talk. The audience kept growing and was easily the largest of the “mini” zones. The panel discussion was less engaging but having said that, panel discussions are hard in nature. Here, it was basically ask a question and get 4 opinions or thoughts. The audio quality was super clear though! Looking around at the event, it seemed quite empty to tell the truth. Even the main stage looked empty. Many of the topics looked interesting, especially around space and quantum computing and automation and AI. Maybe the other days were different but I didn’t end up returning as many of the booths and the technology on showcase lacked any wow factor.
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Learning the basics of Stablecoins

September 20, 2019
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There are plenty of articles, blogs and videos explaining what stablecoins are and how they work but they all define stablecoins in their own unique way and most confusing of all, categorise them differently with different terminology. Here, we’ll attempt to bring some clarity. What is the definition of a Stablecoin? There are lots of different ways to define stablecoins and it is often useful to appreciate these different definitions to help in your own understanding. Here are some examples: Stablecoins are cryptocurrencies designed to minimize the volatility of the price of the stablecoin, relative to some “stable” asset or basket of assets Wikipedia A price stable cryptocurrency whose market price is pegged to another stable asset Blockgeeks – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O3rVWLhBIPo A dollar denominated cryptocurrency Off Chain with Jimmy Song – https://medium.com/hackernoon/stablecoins-what-you-need-to-know-cb0bbf211864 A stablecoin is a type of cryptocurrency that is designed to maintain a stable market price. Binance Academy These are all valid definitions and what can be seen is that they are commonly referred to as a cryptocurrency and that they are relative, pegged, or fixed to a stable asset of some sort. Why use stablecoins? Currently, the most common use of stablecoins is as a safe haven for crypto traders. […]
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Stablecoin comparison charts

September 12, 2019
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Here are a list of some handy stablecoin comparison charts. Coincodex Coincodex is probably the best on as it provides the ability to select up to 17 stablecoins and compare their value over the time frame of your choice. Each stablecoin can be toggled on or off as well which is very useful. Longhash Longhash provides an interesting stablecoin health index as well as price charts for 5 stablecoins. Each stablecoin can be toggled on or off. Stablecoins War Stablecoins War shows the chart for 7 stablecoins but without the feature to select or unselect various stablecoins.
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Stablecoin Interesting Facts

September 1, 2019
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Platforms Based on Cryptoslate, 65% of all stable coins run on the Ethereum blockchain. It shouldn’t be surprising because it is far easier to launch a stablecoin on Ethereum than on other blockchains. How stable are stablecoins? According to The Stablecoin Index, most are pretty close to $1 “most” of the time. The screenshot below shows the deviation in the past week which, ignoring the upper and lower extremes, ranges from 1.008 to 0.9971. That is pretty good. Stablecoin Timeline Here is a brief timeline of the birth of various stablecoins. Tether – Launched in July 2014 as Realcoin before changing their name to Tether in Nov 2014. Nu (Nubits.com), September 2014. Currently trading at $0.087. Failed. Corion October 2017 MakerDAO, Dec 2017 TrueUSD, Mar 2018, CarbonUSD, Sep 2018, first on EOS Gemini Dollar, Oct 2018 USD Coin, Oct 2018 , Sep 26 2018, (From CENTER with founding members of Circle and Coinbase) Paxo, Oct 2018 Alchemint, Sep 2018 HonestCoin, USDH, Bitcoin Cash Network , Jun 2019, (https://news.bitcoin.com/honestnode-founder-discusses-the-first-stablecoin-built-on-bitcoin-cash/)
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Neat EthOn Modelling Concept

June 16, 2019
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Here is a neat overview of the major Ethereum concepts in blockchains. Ref: https://media.consensys.net/ethon-introducing-semantic-ethereum-15f1f0696986
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TutorialToken smart contract with Truffle

June 10, 2019
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If you are trying to go through the token tutorial by Truffle there are a few things to note. If you follow the instructions fully, it will not work. Firstly the pragma version needs to be updated from 0.4.24 to 0.5.0. This is because if you install Truffle, it will install the latest version of solc, the solidity compiler which will be 0.5.8 at this time of writing. Next, if you run “npm run dev”, you might encounter and error like ERR! tutorialtoken@1.0.0 dev: `lite-server`. If you do, you’ll want to fix it by doing this. Then you’ll want to make sure that Metamask is either not yet installed or that it is disabled. Otherwise the tokens will appear in Metamask instead of on the webpage. Finally, you need to change the port in app.js from 9545 to 7545 which is the Ganache port. The tutorial is great but is several years old so needs these modifications.
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