Australian government offers $6M in grants to innovative blockchain teams

blockchain grant

The Australian government has opened applications for grants up to $3 million each in funding to blockchain projects targeting supply chain tracking in the minerals industry and tax tracking in the food and beverage sector. Applications are open until April 29, with any sole trader, partnership, publicly-funded research organization, or entity incorporated in Australia that possesses an Australian Business Number eligible to apply. The money will be used to fund two distinct pilots. The Food and Beverage Provenance pilot hopes to support a team addressing the complexities associated with spirits…

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Russia’s Hermitage museum to host NFT art exhibition

paleta barvy

The NFT exhibition will be part of the “Hermitage 20/21” project. Russia’s State Hermitage Museum, the second-largest art museum in the world, is preparing to host a digital art exhibition involving non-fungible tokens. Scheduled to take place in 2021, the Hermitage’s NFT project will be Russia’s first exhibition in the field of NFT art, the museum officially announced Thursday. The Hermitage’s contemporary art department is organizing the exhibition, which will be part of its “Hermitage 20/21” project. The announcement read: “Non-fungible tokens have become a new form of securing rights…

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Theta’s Mainnet 3.0 launch date pushed to June

“We decided that additional time to conduct a more thorough code review and testing was important,” said Theta Labs. Crypto-powered esports streaming app Theta’s mainnet 3.0 launch has been delayed until June. In an announcement from Theta Labs, the company stated that its development team is still working “to incorporate some building blocks” for a non-fungible token, or NFT, marketplace for the Theta Mainnet 3.0. They are also working to ensure that the network functions when scaled to more than 100,000 Elite Edge Nodes. As a result, Theta needs more…

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Decentralized esports tournament series looks to bring traditional gamers to crypto

gaming esports crypto

Polyient Games co-founder Craig Russo referred to the partnership as “a major step towards bringing mainstream adoption” to the crypto industry. Non-fungible token-focused investment firm Polyient Games is launching a new online tournament to introduce mainstream gamers to the crypto space. In an announcement today, Polyient Games said it would be partnering with esports tournament platform Community Gaming for a $100,000 series featuring games using non-fungible tokens, or NFTs. The esports games will reportedly “function as a method of introducing mainstream gamers to the world of cryptocurrency and blockchain assets”…

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Volkswagen pilots blockchain to integrate electric vehicles with power grids

electric car charging

Energy Web plans to use blockchain technology to help ensure an efficient future for Volkswagen’s electric vehicles. Automobile makers everywhere are betting big on electric vehicles as the world begins to push for environmentally friendly modes of transportation. For example, while fewer than 1% of cars on the roads in the United States today are electric, a number of automobile manufacturers are aiming to change this by stopping sales of gasoline-powered cars. At the end of January 2021, General Motors said it would stop selling gas-powered cars and trucks by…

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Ethereum 2.0 set to undergo first hard fork upgrade

The Official Etherscan Beacon Chain Ethereum 2.0 Explorer

The first Ethereum 2.0 hard fork is aimed to be a general test before introducing deeper changes. Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin published a plan on Monday for the first hard fork of the new Ethereum 2.0 Beacon Chain, tentatively named HF1. The hard fork would allow the developers to introduce several key upgrades to the recently launched Beacon Chain, which would also serve as a useful test for deeper changes in the future. The biggest practical change is the support for light clients — nodes that would have minimal resource…

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Verge of disaster: 200 days transactions wiped from blockchain

Verge blockchain reorganization

Verge has been hit by a huge blockchain reorganization, resulting in more than six months worth of transactions and balances vanishing. However, devs claim it can be fixed. Privacy-focused blockchain network Verge (XVG) has experienced a significant block reorganization, replacing transactions dating as far back as July 2020. Despite being described as potentially “the deepest reorg that has ever taken place in a top 100 cryptocurrency,” analysts are yet to confirm that the incident comprised a coordinated attack. Coinmetrics COO Antoine Le Calvez was one of the first to notice…

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Mitsubishi and Tokyo Tech create blockchain system for P2P energy trading

P2P energy trading using blockchain

Mitsubishi Electric has teamed up with researchers from the prestigious Japanese university, Tokyo Tech, to jointly design a blockchain-based trading system that can support more flexible, peer-to-peer energy trading. Announced on Jan. 18, the new system is intended to support the efficient use of surplus electricity that is generated from renewable energy sources. In particular, it is hoped that the trading system can ensure that at any given moment, there will be the maximum available amount of surplus electricity accessible on the market for consumers. Peer-to-peer energy trading set-ups allow…

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Synthetix co-founder’s siblings reveal blockchain game project

blockchain game

A fledgling blockchain-based game project called Illuvium has already managed to attract support from major industry backers — a development owed in part to the fact that Illuvium co-founders Kieran and Aaron Warwick are the brothers of Kain Warwick, the co-founder of decentralized finance (DeFi) platform Synthetix. In an interview with Cointelegraph, Kieran Warwick clarified that development work has only been underway since September, and that the “two years” refers to the length of time Kain had been badgering Kieran to re-enter crypto full time. “I left to found a…

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Germany legalizes digitized securities

Germany blockchain

Europe’s largest economy is looking to pave the way for securities trading on the blockchain. The German word for securities is wertpapieren, or “papers of worth,” which may soon be as outdated as nocturnal traders saying they’re burning the midnight oil. Per a Reuters report from Wednesday, Merkel’s cabinet had passed a new law that will end the requirement to have a paper certificate for sale of a security, overtly looking to advance blockchain trading within the country. German Finance Minister Olaf Scholtz reportedly said, “The paper certificate may be…

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Russia’s Gazprombank debuts Bitcoin trading in Switzerland

Gazprombank Switzerland

The Switzerland-based branch of a major Russian bank has also joined OpenVASP. Gazprombank Switzerland, a subsidiary of one of the largest banks in Russia, has piloted its Bitcoin (BTC) transaction service following regulatory approval by Swiss regulators. According to a Nov. 19 announcement, Gazprombank will provide its new cryptocurrency solution in collaboration with its long-running partners like fintech firm Avaloq and crypto custody provider Metaco. Gazprombank Switzerland CEO Roman Abdulin said that the new service intends to make crypto transactions “as easy as transactions with traditional assets,” stating: “Digital assets…

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Aerospace giant Thales uses blockchain to comply with NATO standards

blockchain

Blockchain tech is handy for complying with NATO standards in aerospace and defense. Thales, a French multinational company specializing in products and services for aerospace and defense industries, is using blockchain technology for a new management system at its production hub in Spain. According to an official announcement on Nov. 5, Thales is seeking to deploy technologies like blockchain and big data to enable the digital transformation of its defense- and aeronautics-focused production and maintenance center. As part of the initiative, the Paris-based company looks to comply with standards by…

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Verizon’s newsroom to use blockchain in bid for absolute transparency

fake news

News requires an element of trust. Blockchain may be able to help. Verizon has unveiled “a blockchain-based, open-source newsroom product designed to raise the bar for corporate accountability,” according to a public statement today. Called Full Transparency, the platform is meant to immutably document the company’s own news releases on a public blockchain. Verizon posted its first news story through the platform yesterday, according to comments sent to Cointelegraph by a Verizon representative. Alterations made after the story’s initial publication were also recorded. The representative noted, however, that “Only text…

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More than $1B in Bitcoin has been tokenized for DeFi

BTC locked in DeFi

Almost 100,000 Bitcoin are now tokenized on Ethereum, more than half of which have migrated over the past 30 days. More than $1 billion worth of Bitcoin (BTC) has now been tokenized to access decentralized finance protocols on the Ethereum network. That’s equivalent to the entire total value locked, or TVL, in DeFi less than four months ago. According to DeFi Pulse, roughly 98,300 BTC (worth $1.05 billion) has been tokenized using protocols other than Blockstream’s Lightning Network — equating to more than 12% of the DeFi’s sector’s $8.57 billion…

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China’s Blockchain Service Network to launch stablecoin support in 2021

China’s Blockchain Service Network

China’s national blockchain project BSN could be the best fit for the digital yuan. China’s nationwide blockchain project, the Blockchain Service Network, or BSN, will be integrating stablecoin support in 2021. Yifan He, CEO of Red Date Technology, a major tech company involved in the BSN development, told Cointelegraph that the project will soon start integrating stablecoins. Piloted in late 2019, China’s BSN is a state-backed initiative that intends to support medium-sized businesses in building and deploying blockchain applications. The exec explained that stablecoins will be used as payment for…

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