EP31: Blockchain, Crowd Wisdom, and AI with Cindicator

As the story goes, in 1906, the great statistician Francis Galton observed a competition to guess the weight of an ox at a country fair. Over 800 people entered that contest. Galton, being a numbers guy was curious about how the crowd faired with its guesses. What he discovered was that the average guess, 1,197lb, was extremely close to the actual weight of the ox at 1,198lb. No one person had made a guess as good as that of the combined wisdom of the crowd.

Since then, there have been lots of examples of this kind of crowd intelligence and it has become a science unto itself. Meanwhile, another kind of intelligence has become sort of a buzz word in the technology space over the last few years: Artificial Intelligence.

So what happens when you take crowd intelligence and combine with artificial intelligence and blockchain? The answer is a project called Cindicator.

Cindicator has applications in just about everything you can think of predicting. Sound interesting? If so, you will not want to miss this week’s episode of Consensus Network.

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Trader with more than 5 years experience of active trading and asset management. Master's degree in finance. Black swan catcher.

Successfully shorted Russian market right before the Crimean crisis in February 2014, the U.S. stock market before the panic selloffs in August 2015 and January 2016, as well as before Brexit and Trump's election.

Responsible for the development and implementation of new trading strategies. Passionate about the creation of a unique investment fund managed by Hybrid Intelligence.

Show notes

  • HYBRID INTELLIGENCE

  • CINDICATOR TIERS

  • HISTORICAL ACCURACY

  • FUTURE PREDICTIONS

  • DIFFERENCE FROM COMPETITORS

  • FUTURE OF CINDICATOR

  • CINDICATOR.COM

EP30: Dentacoin? What?

I’m a surgeon—a retired surgeon. I started out in neurosurgery. Then, after a couple years, I fled to a specialty where I could operate on the head and neck without the brain. I loved neuroscience, but found the brain, itself, to be a pain in the ass. When the brain gets injured, you can’t wait until the morning to fix the problem. That’s a problem for someone who does not like being woken up in the middle of the night.

Anyway, after finishing my less night intensive surgical residency I did a fellowship year in cosmetics. By the time I was done with all of this training, I was 34 years old. Now I’m retired from surgery and medicine of any kind and I’m 45 years old. In fact, I haven’t seen a patient in two years. Imagine that. Admittedly, it is a bit painful for me to think about my lost decades of youth. It was a long run for a short slide.

Why did I retire from medicine? It wasn’t because I wanted to “retire” aka sit around and wait to die. I just stopped doing something that I no longer wanted to do. I didn’t like it anymore. Actually, I liked operating but didn’t like anything else about medicine.

On top of that, I have a little bit of attention deficit disorder so I tend to change direction a lot. I transferred out of my first college after my first year, I changed residency specialties after two years, I quit/got fired from my first job after 8 months then I quit medicine all together in less then a decade after completion of my training. The only thing that’s lasted over 10 years in my life is my marriage and I’m going to stick with that one for sure!

Anyway, beyond the general lack of interest in practice, I didn’t like the way medicine in general was headed. I had one insurance based business that was a nightmare. The insurance companies were ultimately telling me who I could operate on and who I could not. For those of you in the medical field, you know exactly what I’m getting at.

Insurance based medicine is also the only field in the history of the universe where someone does the work first and then a third party decides how much to pay you or whether or not to pay you at all! But we health care providers are too focussed and idealistic to fight for compensation.

We also have created an environment within our own culture that makes talking about money dirty. Mixing money talk with medicine, at least in my experience, is considered heresy in physician culture. The end result is that others in the system happily fill that vacuum and they are the ones getting paid the most!

I feel especially bad for my friends in non-surgical specialties who are getting squeezed even harder. My best friend in college was the smartest kid in the class and became a pediatrician. Now she works her tail off and her reimbursement is going down every year. 

Internists are also in the same boat. They just can’t see enough patients to stay profitable. Of course patients blame the doctors for not giving them enough attention and using ancillary staff like physician’s assistants to help with the workload. If patients understood how badly internists are getting squeezed by insurance companies and how much they have to work to make a living, they might instead focus their anger at the insurance companies that now control their care.

As a result of this unfortunate situation, some doctors have decided to move towards a concierge practice model. Here’s how it works. You sign up with a doctor and pay maybe a $200 per month. The doctor has all of his patients do that. That makes sure he can make a living. Next, the doctor caps his total number of patients. The result…medicine that you remember as a kid. Doctors spend a lot of time with you. You can stop in if you are sick and you can pretty much make an appointment anytime you want. Oh…and some will even do house calls.

I use one of these doctors and it is definitely worth the price of admission. But, I have to admit it is sad that this kind of care is no longer the standard of care. The insurance companies and reimbursement have made that impossible.

Of course my experience is that of a physician but I have met a lot of dentists and orthodontists through our accredited investor club. I will say this, dentists are a heck of a lot more business savvy than doctors are as a general rule. And some of you are downright killing it by selling large practices etc.

So, it came to no surprise to me when I learned about a blockchain project called dentacoin which has gotten a lot of very positive feedback from the dental community around the world. This is project that combines both health care and cryptocurrency and may actually be applicable to a host of other fields.

Whether you are interested in blockchain technology or not, you will find this interview with the cofounder of dentacoin absolutely fascinating. It is a sign of things to come in the new world financial paradigm.



Welcome back to the show everyone. I hope you enjoyed the show.

If I were a dentist, I would definitely check this out. Think of it this way. The concierge aspect of the model is valuable in and of itself. If you don’t care for cryptocurrency, immediately convert your crypto to dollars. If you want, keep some in crypto and see it potentially 100X in the next few years. Anyway, I like the idea and it may be worth checking out.

Let’s talk about some things happening in the crypto space right now. 

  1. Nasdaq launched real-time information on two new indices linked to the crypto asset market —Bitcoin liquid index (BLX) and Ethereum Liquid Index (ELX) were both incorporated into the Nasdaq platform on February 25th. This is sort of like the Nasdaq composite with the end goal to bolster mainstream adoption by fusing crypto assets into traditional entities like the stock market.

  2. Bitcoin surpassed PayPal in yearly transaction volumes in 2018 with $1.3 trillion dollars more then doubling PayPal with just over $500 billion

  3. The CBOE/Van Eck ETF ETF wil have a decision on it made by April 5th—this was extended of course because of the government shutdown.

Of course, BAAKT, the platform owned by the new york stock exchange owners—Intercontinental exchange—is still delayed with launch expected “later this year”—partnership with starbucks-not wanting to do it during a bear market.

That it for me this week. This is Buck Joffrey signing off.

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Jeremias is the Co-Founder & Core Developer at Dentacoin being an early entrant into the Blockchain scene. Immersed within the peer-to-peer technology for 8 years. Contributor to Ethereum, Waves, ZCash, uPort, Status, imToken, Byteball. Strong believer in decentralization and transparency.

Shownotes

  • WHAT PROBLEM DOES DENTACOIN LOOK TO SOLVE

  • HOW IT IS WORKING TO IMPROVE HEALTHCARE

  • THE VALUE BLOCKCHAIN BRINGS TO DENTISTRY

  • WHERE IS DENTACOIN

  • THE BENEFITS IT BRINGS TO PROVIDERS

  • DENTACOIN.COM

  • DENTACOIN.COM/DENTISTS

  • DENTISTS.DENTACOIN.COM

Ep29: Power Ledger: Peer to Peer Energy

We’ve had a lot of high profile folks on the show lately that represent the “bitcoin maximalist” crowd. In other words, they believe that bitcoin is the only worthwhile blockchain and that every other project/token out there is a “shitcoin”.

There is all sorts of terminology for this—the bitcoiner, the multicoiner, the nocoiner, and then there is the full spectrum in between.

What am I? Well, it’s funny because a couple of years ago I would have been one of those people who said, “blockchain not bitcoin”. Why?…Because I didn’t understand bitcoin as well as I do now. “Blockchain not bitcoin” really means “I have no clue what I’m talking about but I will give you my opinion anyway.”

On the other hand, I’ve come to realize that there is, indeed, and overabundance of needless projects and tokens. So, I would call myself more of a bitcoin maximalist in the long term. However, in the next couple years I actually believe people stand to make a lot more money with the right alt coin than with bitcoin itself.

One of my favorite projects is Worldwide Asset Exchange (WAX). WAX is trading at 3.5 cents right now. WAX will get to 35 cents way before bitcoin does its 10X in my opinion. In fact, when bitcoin has its next 10X bull run, I believe WAX will be up closer to 100X. On the other hand, bitcoin is more likely to be around in 10 years than WAX. Anyway, I think you get my point.

The reality is that there are some really good projects out there that are already using blockchain that are making things more efficient. Peer to peer energy is one of the interesting use cases that I have spoken about on a few occasions. So, as we pick our alts to HODL for the next bull run, we will start exploring some useful blockchain use cases and quality projects.


One of the areas in which blockchain appears to be emerging as a very useful technology is peer to peer energy production and consumption. The clear leader in this area is a Project Called Power Ledger who’s cofounder is our guest on Consensus Network this week.

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Jemma, as the Chair, provides the strategic external relations, risk management and leadership development for Power Ledger. Jemma has more than 15 years' experience in finance and risk advisory having worked for 11 years in investment banking in London. Whilst there, she completed a Masters degree and two postgraduate diplomas from Cambridge University. Jemma is a research fellow at Curtin University Sustainability Policy (CUSP) Institute, whose doctoral research into “Citizen Utilities” has produced unique insights into the challenges and opportunities for the deployment of rooftop solar PV and battery storage within multi-unit developments and the application of the blockchain. Jemma is experienced in the challenges of sustainable cities through her role as an independent Councilor of the City of Perth. She is also the Chair of Climate-KIC Australia, a founder of the Global Blockchain Business Council and a contributor to Forbes on blockchain disruption.

Shownotes:

  • BLOCKCHAIN TECHNOLOGY IN ENERGY

  • ENERGY TRADING

  • PEER-TO-PEER TRADING

  • POWER TOKEN ROLE

  • POWERLEDGER.IO

  • FORBES.COM/SITES/JEMMAGREEN/#5FBDEFA92019

  • T.ME/POWERLEDGER

  • FACEBOOK.COM/POWERLEDGER

Ep28: Does Crypto Need Rules?

I’ve been off the air for a while with Consensus Network through the holidays. The good or the bad news is that there isn’t a lot of movement in bitcoin prices.

Infrastructure continues to grow and projects continue to develop throughout crypto winter.

Even though prices aren’t moving dramatically, the technology and laws around it are. 

My guest today is at ground zero for all of those developments.

Her name is Amy Wan. The last time I interviewed her, it was for Wealth Formula about real estate crowdfunding. She’s consistently been at the forefront of technology and the next big thing.

She is now using her law skills to work with, of all things, smart contracts. This conversation was very interesting. We top off the show with some important news as well so make sure to listen to it.

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Amy Wan is Founder & CEO of Bootstrap Legal, which automates real estate syndication legal documents, and co-founder and CEO of Sagewise, a legaltech blockchain company. She hosts The Law and Blockchain Podcast (a show on The Bitcoin Podcast Network) and has authored the Bloomberg Law practice guide to ICOs and Lexis Nexus' Private Equity practice guide. Previously, she was a Partner at a boutique securities law firm and General Counsel at a real estate crowdfunding platform. Amy founded Legal Hackers LA, which programs around the intersection of law and technology; was named one of ten women to watch in legal technology by the American Bar Association Journal in 2014 and one of 18 millennials changing legaltech by law.com in 2018; and was nominated as a Finalist for the Corporate Counsel of the Year Award 2015 by LA Business Journal.

Amy has also worked in international regulatory and trade policy at the U.S. Department of Commerce, and was a Presidential Management Fellow at the U.S. Department of State and U.S. Department of Transportation. She holds an LL.M. in Public International Law from the London School of Economics and Political Science, a JD from the University of Southern California Gould School of Law, and a BA in Biological Sciences from the University of Southern California.

Shownotes:

  • Amy Wan’s journey to cryptospace

  • Smart Contract

  • What does does Sagewise play?

  • Governance & EOS

  • On-chain & Off-chain governance

  • Amy’s take on Hedera Hashgraph

  • Twitter.com/amyywan

  • Sagewise.io

Ep27: Crypto 202 with Chris Coney

We are in a bear market with cryptocurrency. There is no doubt about that. How long will it last? I have no idea.

However, one day a bull market shall return just as the dotcom’s did after the bubble burst in the late 90s.

Then we will see the blockchain versions of Amazon and Apple skyrocket in value. In the meantime, it is winter.

Now is the time where you learn about projects and buy them at a steep discount. The truth is that the vast majority of these cryptocurrencies will never recover. But the ones that do will come back with a storm.

So how do you spend your time if you want to be part of this eventual boom? You learn. You become part of the conversation.

You can’t do that if you don’t speak the language. That’s where my guest this week on Consensus Network really shines. He is one of the best teachers in blockchain I have yet to encounter.

His name is Chris Coney and he will help you make sense out of a lot of fundamental but difficult concepts in distributed ledger technology.

Chris Coney.jpg

Chris Coney

Founder of the worlds first online school to teach courses on Bitcoin, cryptocurrencies and blockchains.

Shownotes:

    • Chris Coney’s background

    • When did Chris start to buy

    • Chris’s take on Bitcoin Maximalism

    • EOS

    • Proof of stake & proof of work

    • Cryptoversity 2.0

    • How the Crypto Revolution is Bigger than the Internet

    • Search “the cryptoverse” on YouTube for more of Chris

 

 

 

Ep25: Nic Carter and the REAL Value of Blockchain

I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but people are overusing the word blockchain. In fact, a recent article I read exposed twelve publicly traded companies that reaped huge valuation rewards simply by adding the word “bitcoin” or “blockchain” to their name.

Now listen, this technology that is coming through is special. I have no doubt about it. But even actual blockchain projects may not have a real reason to include distributed ledgers.

All of this, of course, is going to flush out over the next decade. Our job, in the meantime, is to understand the technology as well as we can and to try to understand for what it is best suited.

My guest this week on Consensus Network has a special set of skills. His ability to think at both a macro level and as an analyst evaluating projects is impressive.

His name is Nic Carter and he is going to help us navigate through the rapidly changing world of distributed ledger technology.

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Before joining Castle Island, Nic Carter worked for Fidelity as their first cryptoasset analyst, where he devised research perspectives on public blockchains.

He is the cofounder of Coinmetrics.io, a platform devoted to demystifying on-chain data and bringing transparency to the industry. He has written extensively about token holder rights, cryptoasset governance models, and public blockchains as political institutions.

Nic blends pragmatism with a data-driven approach in determining how entrepreneurs can best interface with these new institutions.

He holds an MA in Philosophy from the University of St Andrews and an MSc Finance and Investment from the University of Edinburgh.

Shownotes:

  • Nic Carter’s background

  • What’s is Coin Metrics

  • How is Coin Metrics different than bits activity and other competitors

  • Castle Island

  • Blockchain, blockchain, blockchain…

  • When will the impact of institutional interest reflect the market?

  • Learn more about Nic Carter

  • https://medium.com/@nic__carter

  • coinmetrics.io

Ep23: How to Scale Bitcoin with Samson Mow

If you follow the crypto world like I do, it seems almost a little bit ridiculous sometimes with all of these personalities threatening each other and massively volatile digital asset prices.

My friend Teeka Tiwari calls these conflicts the “nerd wars” and thinks we should ignore the noise. I tend to agree in the larger scheme of things. However, I do think that this kind of chatter hurts the evolution of this asset class.

In times like these it is important to understand that underlying all of this stuff is a world-changing technology—blockchain—and it was all started by one white paper authored by Satoshi Nakamoto.

That white paper gave us one of the most elegant ideas of the century. It’s called bitcoin. Over time, it is my opinion that we will see bitcoin evolve into something of tremendous significance.

However, we aren’t their yet and part of the issue is that we are still in the early stages trying to understand how we can unleash all of its potentials.

As a payment system, it has run up against some challenges with regard to scaling. How do you keep this elegant system intact while making it something that can be used for everyday transactions?

This question ultimately led to a major schism in the bitcoin community in August of 2017 which led to the split between bitcoin and bitcoin cash.

I have been trying to get someone to intelligently speak about the issues surrounding the scaling of bitcoin and I was fortunate to find one of the brightest minds in the field, Samson Mow from Blockstream. Listen now to hear how he thinks bitcoin should be scaled.

Samson Mow

is Blockstream's CSO and Pixelmatic's CEO. Blockstream is the leading provider of blockchain technologies, on the forefront of work in cryptography and distributed systems. Samson founded Pixelmatic in 2011 to creating engaging games that are truly social and encourage new connections to be made.

Previously at BTCC, one of the largest bitcoin exchanges and mining pools in the world, Samson's role as COO was to oversee the day-to-day operations of the company and directly manage the exchange and mining pool business units. Previously, Samson was a director of production and executive producer at Ubisoft, where he spearheaded expansion into Asian markets for web, social, and mobile games. Samson oversaw ongoing development and live operations of the cross-platform (web and iOS) MMO strategy game "Might & Magic: Heroes Kingdoms" in Asia, along with the social games "Castle & Co" (Facebook, mixi, Naver) and "The Smurfs & Co" (Facebook, mixi). "The Smurfs & Co" is Ubisoft’s most successful social game to date, reaching over 10 million users through organic growth. Prior to Ubisoft, Samson was in charge of business development and operations at Sitemasher, a Vancouver based startup developing a SaaS platform for building websites and apps. Sitemasher was the winner of the 2008 Blue Sky Innovation Excellence Award from Microsoft and was later acquired by Salesforce.com for US$20 million and rebranded as Site.com.

Samson holds a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from Simon Fraser University in Canada. As a veteran of the game industry, Samson regularly features as a speaker and panelist in conferences such as GDC and CGDC.

Shownotes:

  • Samson Mow’s background

  • “Bitcoin is like a tank, or an aircraft carrier”

  • Lightning Network

  • What does Blockstream do?

  • Liquid Network

  • Bitcoin, not blockchain

  • Blockstream.com

Ep21: The Conservative Investor’s Case for Bitcoin

One of the favorite words in crypto-Twitter these days is “Institutional”. What does that even mean? What is the big deal about these institutional investors coming in and why in the world do we care?

There has been big money in the crypto markets for a while in the form of hedge funds, family offices, and wealthy individuals—all of which tend to have a greater appetite for risk than say a pension fund or a University endowment. The latter are more conservative because their primary objective is to not lose money. Crypto certainly is a good place to do that as we have seen in the past few weeks.

So why would Yale University’s endowment lead the charge into diversifying into blockchain? Why are other Universities following suit?

Well, the issue is that there is risk in participating in this technology but there is also risk in not participating. Say for example an endowment put 1 percent of its assets into blockchain (still a lot). If that one percent went down to zero, which is highly unlikely, the overall effect on the portfolio would be negligible.

On the flip side, if that one percent returned 1000 percent over two or three years, which absolutely could happen, that small risk would lead to noticeable improvements in the overall yield of a fund. This is what you call an asymmetric risk profile and cryptocurrency is the quintessential example of that.

Frankly, as an individual, I have small investments in dozens of projects for the very same reason. Certainly, there are some that I have greater conviction in that I consider less risky, such as bitcoin, that I am willing to buy a little bit more of, but the vast majority of alternative coins out there are still quite risky in my humble opinion.

This week’s podcast features an interview with Kim Snider. Kim comes from the traditional financial world where she was an expert in options trading. After a successful career, she retired. However, seeing this asymmetric risk profile opportunity was enough to get her back in the game. In this interview, she will tell you why you should invest in bitcoin even if you have no clue how it works.

Kim retired at 47, sold her investment firm and in 2011 moved to South Carolina, with her husband and dogs, built a polo farm and planned to live happily ever after ... 

And all was going according to plan, until crypto came along.

Most people think cryptocurrency is too risky for a run of the mill portfolio. Kim believes the risk is in NOT investing in cryptoassets.

Motivated by the cascade of bad advice she saw pouring out all over the Internet, Kim un-retired to create SANE CRYPTO so thoughtful investors can take advantage of the unique, possibly once-in-a-lifetime upside cryptocurrency can provide, while simultaneously diversifying and protecting the portfolio against inflation and financial crisis.

Shownotes:

  • Kim Snider’s financial background

  • How did Kim lose all her money

  • Kim approaches crypto as a traditional asset class

  • Kim’s advice for her typical audience

  • Her projection of the next 2-3 years