- Aurora has launched a token fund worth $90 million geared towards financing DeFi-based applications on the Near Protocol
- The fund also is geared toward attracting developers to Aurora and the Near Protocol
- Aurora is an Ethereum Virtual Machine created by the team at NEAR Protocol
Aurora has launched a $90 million token fund geared towards accelerating the development of DeFi applications on the Near Protocol. The fund was initiated today by Aurora, alongside Proximity Labs and the DeFi Arm of the Near Protocol.
To note is that the team at Aurora has assigned 25 million AURORA tokens from its DAO treasury to Proximity Labs to provide the $90 million in funding proposed for the development of DeFi applications on the Near Protocol.
Proximity Labs will now be responsible for managing the funds and providing grants to developers aiming to build DeFi Dapps on Aurora. Such a token-based funding model also aims at increasing activity on the network.
Dr. Alex Shevchenko, the founder of Aurora Labs, explained that the project’s mission was to extend the Ethereum economy beyond the Ethereum network. He said:
Aurora DAO continues its mission to extend the Ethereum economy outside Ethereum blockchain. This grant is a next big step in the development of the Aurora ecosystem and I’m happy that Proximity Labs accompanies us in this journey.
About Aurora (AURORA)
Aurora is an Ethereum Virtual Machine created by the team at the Near Protocol. The project aims to ‘deliver a turn-key solution for developers to operate their apps on an Ethereum-compatible, high-throughput, scalable and future-safe platform, with low transaction costs for their users.’
It is fully compatible with Ethereum facilitating seamless integration with applications on the Near protocol. The latter is one of the highest performance third-generation L1 protocols.
Aurora has a hybrid governance structure constituting a Decentralised Autonomous Organization (AuroraDAO) which is complemented by a traditional entity that holds one of several seats in the AuroraDAO.
Litecoin Under Scrutiny By S. Korean Exchanges of Upbit, Bithumb After it Introduces Privacy Through MimbleWimble
- Litecoin’s MimbleWimble privacy protocol has resulted in some South Korean exchanges issuing warnings about LTC.
- Upbit and Bithumb have advised crypto users of the risks associated with the privacy upgrade.
- Both exchanges cited South Korea’s Act on the Reporting and Use of Specific Financial Transaction Information.
Bitcoin’s little brother, commonly known as Litecoin (LTC), has captured the attention of South Korean exchanges after the implementation of the highly anticipated MimbleWimble upgrade.
The two popular South Korean crypto exchanges of, Bithumb and Upbit, have each released statements warning their user-base of the risks associated with the privacy-centric upgrade. Litecoin’s new upgrade introduces features that block transactional information.
Both exchanges cited the country’s Act on the Reporting and Use of Specific Financial Transaction Information as a basis for the respective notifications. In particular, the Act requires all crypto exchanges in South Korea to implement know-your-customer (KYC) procedures and anti-money laundering (AML) processes.
Upbit and Bithumb Have Delisted Privacy Coins Before
To note is that South Korean exchanges have had a history of delisting cryptocurrencies that are focused on privacy, such as Monero (XMR), Dash (DASH), and ZCash (ZEC). The recent warning of Litecoin for similar reasons could hint at a potential delisting of LTC by both exchanges in the near future.
Such a possibility was explored by the team at WuBlockchain, who stated the following:
South Korean exchanges such as Upbit issued a warning that the MimbleWimble Extension Blocks (MWEB) conducted by the LTC Foundation made the LTC transfer records unrecognizable. This warning may develop into the delisting of LTC in the future.
Litecoin Recaptures $70 Support But Remains in Bear Territory
Concerning price, Litecoin is now trading at $72 after recapturing the crucial $70 support level. However, Bitcoin’s little brother is still trading in bear territory below the 50-day (white), 100-day (yellow), and 200-day (green) moving averages, as seen in the chart below.
Also, from the chart, it can be observed that the daily MFI, RSI, and MACD are all pointing towards renewed buying of Litecoin (LTC), which could lead to a push towards $80. But, Litecoin’s fate in the crypto markets is tied to that of Bitcoin, which is connected to the traditional markets currently under the influence of the mood set by the US Federal Reserve, increasing interest rates to tame inflation.
Consequently, caution is advised when trading Litecoin, more so with the warnings issued by Bithumb and Upbit.
Bitcoin Miners in China Defy Crypto Mining Ban, Now Ranked 2nd in BTC Hashrate
- Bitcoin miners based in China now control 21.1% of BTC’s hashrate.
- China is now ranked second in Bitcoin’s hashrate, hinting at the existence of covert mining facilities.
- This is despite China’s government reiterating in May 2021 its ban on Bitcoin mining and crypto trading.
- Due to the ban, the dominance of Bitcoin miners based in China had dropped from almost 50% in May 2021 to 9% in July 2021.
China has once again reemerged as a significant contributor to the Bitcoin (BTC) network despite the country’s government reissuing a blanket ban on crypto mining back in May 2021. According to data from the Cambridge Bitcoin Electricity Index, Bitcoin miners based in China are now ranked second in terms of the total hashrate of the BTC network.
The United States is Now at the Top in terms of Bitcoin Hashrate.
The chart below, courtesy of the hashrate tracking website by Cambridge, shows China (yellow) slowly recovering its hashrate beginning mid-2021 and after the reissuance of the mining ban. Also, from the chart, it can be observed that the United States (pink) has slowly grown over the years to now provide a majority of Bitcoin’s hashrate.
China Now Controls 21% of Bitcoin’s Hashrate
In terms of percentage, China now controls 21.1% of the global Bitcoin hashrate, with the United States at 37.8%. The chart below, also courtesy of the Cambridge Bitcoin Electricity Index website, highlights how China’s hashrate dominance (yellow) has fluctuated over the years.
The chart shows that China controlled almost 50% of Bitcoin’s hashrate before its government reissued a complete ban on Bitcoin and crypto mining back in May 2021. By July and August of the same year, China’s hashrate dominance had plummeted to 9.4%. However, the chart hints that Bitcoin miners started fresh operations by September of last year, resulting in China now controlling 21.1% of Bitcoin’s hashrate.
The Resurgence of Hashrate Points Towards Covert Bitcoin Mining Facilities in China
As to why China is now ranked second in Bitcoin hashrate, a recent report by Bloomberg concluded that the country has seen a sudden surge in BTC mining through ‘covert mining operations.’
China FUD Banning Bitcoin Mining Might be Around the Corner
To note is that China has banned Bitcoin and crypto mining on numerous occasions over the years, with the most notable being January 2018 and May 2021. The resurgence of Bitcoin mining activities in China could thus hint at another ban around the corner that might result in panic selling in the crypto markets, as was the case after the last two bans by the Chinese government.
Legendary Hall of Famer Magic Johnson to Release NFTs in Partnership with NBA Top Shot
- Earvin Magic Johnson is set to release his very first NFTs in partnership with NBA Top Spot.
- The NFTs with be in the form of an Anthology set reserved for iconic plays from NBA legends.
- Magic Johnson’s NFTs will be available on June 7th and contain rare and spectacular moments of his career.
- The NFTs will be in 1,600 packs, each retailing for $399.
The Legendary NBA Hall of Famer, Earvin Magic Johnson, has announced via Twitter that he intends to launch his first NFT collection in partnership with NBA Top Spot.
I’m really excited to partner with @nbatopshot to release my first NFTs and bring some of my favorite Moments from my career to fans everywhere. Fans get to see just a few of my favorite plays from my career! https://t.co/5hGKT6BwiJ pic.twitter.com/7egr3xBZsv
— Earvin Magic Johnson (@MagicJohnson) May 23, 2022
Magic Johnson’s NFTs Will be in the form of an Anthology
Magic Johnson is a five-time NBA champion, a three-time finals MVP, a three-time NBA MVP, a twelve-time NBA All-star, and a member of the NBA’s 75th Anniversary Team. His NFTs, in collaboration with NBA Top Shot, will be in the form of an Anthology set ‘reserved for iconic plays from NBA legends.’
The NFT collection will drop on June 7th and contain rare and legendary Magic Johnson moments.
A total of 1,600 anthology packs will be issued, and each will retail at $399. Within each pack will be one of four Magic Johnson moments that took place in seasons when he won the NBA Championship with the Los Angeles Lakers. Each Anthology pack will contain ‘a single guaranteed Magic Johnson Moment NFT in either the Legendary or Rare tier.’
The NFTs will Feature 4 Magic Johnson Moments.
The four Magic Johnson moments to be featured in the NFT collection are as follows:
- Never Fear, E.J. Is Here: during game six of the 1980 NBA finals, Magic Johnson was started at center against the Philadelphia 76ers despite being a rookie. Magic went on to post 42 points, 15 rebounds, 7 assists, and 3 steals. His performance during the game will be memorialized with a fearless and-one layup against the 76ers.
- Now You See it, Now You Don’t: in the 1984 – 85 season, one of Magic Johnson’s assists during the victory over the Phoenix Suns will be immortalized in the NFTs. Magic’s assist ‘starts with the 6’9 guard grabbing a rebound, leading the transition fast break, deceiving a duo of defenders with a dynamic handle and dishing a dime for an emphatic slam.’
- Hocus Pocus Pass: Magic Johnson’s rare assist moment in the 133 – 115 victory against the San Antonio Spurs will also be turned into an NFT. During the game in the 1987 – 88 Championship season, Magic conjured an assist that was ‘more special and mind-bending than a head fake and ball fake combo.’
- Game. Set. Magic: In the 1986 – 87 finals between the Los Angeles Lakers and Boston Celtics, Magic Johnson denied the Celtics a victory by ‘[catching] an inbounds pass along the baseline and instantly turns into a running, one-footed leaping bank shot over a double team that bounces off the glass right through the net and beats the buzzer for the surprise 115-114 victory.’
[Feature image courtesy of Magic Johnson on Twitter]
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