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Bitcoin is a ‘Fad,’ But Even NASA is Investing in Blockchain

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Bitcoin birthed the concept of blockchain technology, and now even organizations as technologically advanced as NASA are considering its benefits. Yet cryptocurrency is often described as a fad, a bubble, and even worthless.

NASA Eyes Hyperledger Blockchain for Air Traffic Management

Ronald J. Reisman, an aero-computer engineer at the NASA Ames Research Center, has put forwardblockchain to solve issues of privacy and the prevention of spoofing, denial of service, and other attacks.

He says a new system due for implementation in 2020, the Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B), does not provide for the protection of flight plans and positions and other state data. Reisman believes blockchain has the answer in the form of an engineering prototype built using a permissioned blockchain.

The use of an open source permissioned blockchain framework to enable aircraft privacy and anonymity while providing a secure and efficient method for communication with Air Traffic Services, Operations Support, or other authorized entities.

The proposed framework uses “certificate authority, smart contract support, and higher-bandwidth communication channels” to ensure private communication between aircraft and authorized participants.

He details how the prototype could be “economically and rapidly deployed” at scale. Reisman bases the proposal on the use of Hyperledger Fabric, a blockchain he says has been developed away from fintech and designed for enterprise use.

Many Blockchains Lack Cohesion

nasa blockchain air traffic control
NASA believes blockchain technology could improve air traffic management

Interestingly, he appears to have considered other chains. He describes these chains as lacking cohesion and flexibility due to the platforms design limitations:

Ethereum claims a >80% market share, followed by other platforms, including (in order of market share popularity): Waves, Bitcoin Fork, Stratis, Graphene, Hyperledger, Ethereum Classic, Maidsafe, Litecoin Fork, NEO, and Rootstock.

Reisman further says his paper:

Proposes to leverage an industrial-strength open-source enterprise-blockchain framework called Hyperledger Fabric to demonstrate potential solutions to vexing technical issues that threaten the adoption of ADS-B by Military, Corporate, and other aircraft operators who do not want their operations and movements discernable by the general public.

And although his approach “is not perfected” it is “based on available technology,” says the paper. This could be interpreted as a mark of approval of readiness for the wider use of blockchain globally.

But Cryptocurrency is a Fad?

Cryptocurrency and even blockchain are dismissed as a fad by many. Nobel prize-winning economist Robert Shiller called bitcoin a fad when it first reached a record high of nearly $6,000 in October 2017. Martin Walker of the Center for Evidence-Based Management (CEBMa) called blockchain a fad as well. And Jamie Dimon, CEO of JPMorgan Chase, famously called bitcoin “a fraud.” There are many examples and similar, dismissive, comments towards bitcoin and the concept of cryptocurrenc

It’s true that blockchain adoption is increasing far and away from mainstream cryptocurrency adoption. This is further illustrated by its permeation into even NASA’s technological considerations.

But how can the concept of cryptocurrency, or digital money, be considered a fad? Its underlying technology looks set to be implemented at every level of technological infrastructure.

Cryptocurrencies have a long way to go before they are used in the same way as fiat currency. One or many might emerge as a common currency for transactions. An emerging new mainstream currency may or may not end up being bitcoin.

Blockchain Use will Bolster Crypto Adoption

The point is, cryptocurrency cannot simply be dismissed. Every technology we use in the future could either be based on or interact with blockchain. Sooner or later, if blockchain becomes a foundational technology, so too must money become blockchain-based.

The ongoing adoption of blockchain by banks, governments, enterprises, and even space agencies like NASA is laying the ground for cryptocurrency use to become mainstream. The question is not if crypto is a fad, but how long will it take cryptocurrency to catch up.

That will depend much on global regulation and ultimately its use. A new report by the bank of central banks, the Bank for International Settlements, reveals 70% of banks are researching the issue of a central bank digital currency (CBDC). But so far few are in any rush to make the move.

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Bakkt Futures to Launch in the Current Quarter

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Managing director and quant strategist at Fundstrat Global Advisors Sam Doctor suggested in a Twitter post published on July 19 that Bakkt’s Bitcoin (BTC) futures contracts will launch this quarter.

According to the post, which includes a summary of Fundstrat’s takeaways from the Bakkt Digital Asset Summit held on July 18, the firm’s futures will launch in the current quarter. The launch is set to follow tests announced last month, which are scheduled to start next week. The firm believes that the launch will be a catalyst to accelerate entry of traditional institutional investors. The post notes:

“THERE APPEARS TO BE A CRITICAL MASS OF ADOPTERS READY TO COME ON BOARD ON DAY 1 OF THE BAKKT LAUNCH, WITH THE SALES TEAM GAINING TRACTION AMONG BROKERS, MARKET MAKERS, PROP TRADING DESKS AND LIQUIDITY PROVIDERS.”

During the aforementioned event, Commodities Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) commissioner Dawn Stump apparently expressed that no current cryptocurrency could threaten financial stability and that the regulator sees a growing demand for Bitcoin futures from the public. Also during the summit, chief information officer at crypto investment firm Blocktower Ari Paul was reportedly confident that once a killer app or user interface makes cryptocurrency on-ramps safe, reliable and as easy to use as Paypal, retail adoption will be enormous.

According to the Fundstrat notes, Paul also said that institutions should not dismiss crypto assets, considering their low correlation with traditional assets and with compound annual growth rates of 200%-300%. He also said that inflation and confiscation resistance of cryptocurrencies are a key value proposition.

Pantera Capital CEO Dan Morehead, on the other hand, said that most tokens will fail and a handful of base protocols will survive, but with thousands of decentralized applications built on top of them. 

As Cointelegraph reported in May, the Intercontinental Exchange is reportedly taking steps to ensure approval from the United States CFTC for Bakkt.

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Bitcoin Price Slips 10% in 24 Hrs as Fed Raises Facebook Libra Concerns

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Bitcoin Price Slips 10% in 24 Hrs as Fed Raises Facebook Libra Concerns

Bitcoin price (BTC) shed more than 10% on July 11 as markets appeared to react to criticism of Facebook’s Libra from a senior United States lawmaker.

Market visualization

Market visualization courtesy of Coin360

Data from Coin360 sees the majority of cryptocurrencies firmly in the red Thursday, hours after Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said Facebook’s offering should not continue development.

Libra, which aims to act firstly as a cross-border payment method, allegedly buoyed Bitcoin throughout recent weeks, with commentators arguing its public profile was driving publicity and uptake of Bitcoin itself. 

Powell’s demands, which follow similar words from representatives of the Senate House of Financial Services Committee, leant weight to that theory.

“Libra raises serious concerns regarding privacy, money laundering, consumer protection, financial stability,” he said during a speech before a congressional committee. “These are concerns that should be thoroughly and publicly addressed.”

“THESE ARE CONCERNS THAT SHOULD BE THOROUGHLY AND PUBLICLY ADDRESSED.”

At press time, BTC/USD traded down 10.4% at $11,530, having risen as high as $13,160 in recent days. 

Bitcoin 7-day price chart

Bitcoin 7-day price chart. Source: Coin360

The drop places the pair still within its recent corridor between around $9,700 and $13,800, with volatility still in evidence across crypto markets. 

Altcoins, meanwhile, delivered noticeably worse performance as Bitcoin price fell, with several assets in the top twenty by market cap shedding 15% or more.

Ether (ETH), the largest altcoin, lost a similar amount to Bitcoin, hitting $272 and firmly losing support at $300 once again.

Ether 7-day price chart

Ether 7-day price chart. Source: Coin360

Among the worst performers were Bitcoin SV (BSV), which lost 17.2%, and EOS (EOS), which was down 20.2%.KEEP TRACK OF TOP CRYPTO MARKETS IN REAL TIME HERE

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Bitcoin Approaches $11,000 With All Top 20 in Green

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Saturday, July 20 — crypto markets have seen another upward move, with all top 20 coins by market cap seeing major gains, while Bitcoin (BTC) has approached $11,000 mark again.

Market visualization from Coin360

After dipping below the $11,000 threshold on July 14, Bitcoin has approached the price point today, with its intraday high of $10,944, according to data from CoinMarketCap. The biggest cryptocurrency added 3.7% to its price to trade at $10,922 at press time. As Bitcoin has seen significant volatility this week, with its price having dipped below $9,500, the cryptocurrency is down around 3% over the past 7 days at press time.

Bitcoin 24-hour price chart. Source: Coin360

Ether (ETH), the second cryptocurrency by market cap, is up over 5% and trading at $232 at press time. The top altcoin is down 13.4% over the past 7 days.

Ether 7-day price chart. Source: Coin360

Ripple (XRP), the third top cryptocurrency by market cap, added 6.4% to trade at $0.339, also seeing a notable growth over the past 7 days, adding up to about 2.6%.

Ripple 7-day price chart. Source: Coin360

Bitcoin SV (BSV), the ninth top cryptocurrency by market cap, has added over 25% to its value today, seeing the biggest growth among the top 20 coins by market cap.

As of press time, total market capitalization amounts to $298 billion after that number dropped below $250 billion earlier this week. Daily trade volume amounts to around $63 billion.

The new wave of green on crypto markets follows a recent bullish prediction by managing director and quant strategist at Fundstrat Global Advisors Sam Doctor, who suggested that much-anticipated Bakkt’s Bitcoin futures contracts will launch in Q3 2019.

Additionally, India’s Minister of State for Finance Anurag Thakur said yesterday that there is no legislation in India that expressly bans citizens from using cryptocurrencies.

by https://cointelegraph.com

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