Author: Catherine Welsch
August 11, 2022

In this article made jointly by the ChangeHero and SwapSpace teams, we list and explore five arguments in favor of using TRON Network, from low transactional costs to the bustling ecosystem.

reasons to use tron network banner

Cryptocurrencies were made to be used as a peer-to-peer cash but evolved into fully-fledged platforms with thousands of possible applications. However, both with Bitcoin and Ethereum the solutions were far from perfect and encountered scalability issues and bloating costs. ChangeHero and the CMO of SwapSpace John Steinmuller make a case for one of the thousands of alternatives — TRON Network.

Why Should You Use TRON? Consider These Five Points

Lower Transaction Costs

In both Ethereum and TRON, not only transfers incur a fee for inclusion in the next block. Even virtual machine and smart contract calls require you to pay. Since transaction fees work like an auction, miners or validators prioritize those who give a higher tip. It is denominated in the network’s native token — ETH and TRX respectively.

There are two aspects that drive the Ethereum network fees up or down. Namely, network load and the price of the native token. In the bull market of 2021, for Ethereum, average transaction fee was 30 to 60 USD worth of ETH. These days, it is closer to $3 to $6 dollars, which is significantly lower but still can be a lot. Meanwhile, TRON uses a slightly different fee mechanic: below a certain threshold the transactions and TVM calls are free. Should you go above it, you need to stake as little as 0.4 TRX ($0.0028).

Decentralized Finance

Without any doubt, Ethereum is the true home to the decentralized finance industry. After all, at the moment it has the highest total value locked metric at $40 billion USD. The runner-ups compete for only a fraction of this metric.

TRONScan chain explorer indicates that over $11 billion is locked into the DeFi protocols on TRON. Lending protocol JustLend, TRX Staking Governance and decentralized exchange SUN.io take up the most of it. There may not be as many protocols to choose from (531 vs. 10(!) according to DefiLlama) but sometimes, less is more. TRON Ecosystem covers pretty much all the ground DeFi has to offer: lending, staking, stablecoins, swapping, farming — you name it.

Stablecoins

These crypto tokens tied to the value of USD and other fiat currencies are extremely widespread. Users value them for predictable value with real-world reference. However, as transacting on Ethereum would at times be unpredictably costly, users moved on to other networks — including TRON.

For example, take the most popular stablecoin protocol, Tether USD. It has $66 million USDT in the Ethereum contract and $33 million USDT on TRON. However, the average daily volume of transfers is higher on the latter: $9 million USDT-TRC20 versus $3 million USDT-ERC20 daily. 

And of course, Tether is not the only stablecoin issuer offering their services on TRON. You can choose any from semi-centralized USDT and USDC to native algorithmic USDD and USDJ.

Transaction Throughput

Payment providers, such as Visa and MasterCard, became as popular as they are thanks to their near instantaneous settlements. Would you want to wait up to a minute or two at the checkout if you wanted to pay with cryptocurrency?

Well, unfortunately, this is the case with Ethereum. New blocks are added to its chain every 15 seconds but if your transaction does not get included in the next block, you will have to wait for the next one, and maybe even a little after that. Not to mention, for a transaction to be considered really finalized, it takes at least three blocks since inclusion.

The TRON blockchain adds blocks every three seconds. On average, it processes 75–100 transactions per second, which is more than ten times more than Ethereum.

Developer-Friendly

Finally, if you are interested in building decentralized apps and working with smart contracts, TRON is a surprisingly good option. You can start working with tokens with the TRC-10 standard and move on to smart contracts when you have a better understanding of Solidity. TRON mainnet implementation is written in Java and it uses JavaScript-based tools for dApp interfaces.

By the time you develop fully-fledged blockchain applications, you will be able to migrate your apps to Ethereum. In architecture, the two networks are somewhat similar — but will you want to give up the ease of use and low costs?

Guest Opinion from SwapSpace Expert: John Steinmuller, SwapSpace CMO

ChangeHero (CH): Is TRX popular with the SwapSpace community?

John Steinmuller (JS): Yes — according to our internal statistics, Tron is a fairly popular coin among our community. TRX is traded quite actively via SwapSpace. Also, our TRX Exchange and Price Prediction pages, where the customers go for the information on this coin, are among the more visited ones in their categories. All of this signals a significant level of interest from our user base.

CH: Do you think that Tron Network has potential for future development? Why?

JS: There’s definitely a lot of potential there. It’s reflected in the numbers: recently, Tron placed second in the TVL rankings worldwide, overtaking BNB Chain, which shows that both developers’ and users’ interest in Tron keeps growing. Speaking of developers, they are drawn to Tron: there is news of new projects deployed within the Tron ecosystem seemingly every month, which also bodes well for the network’s future. The human factor is another reason: Tron founder Justin Sun obviously has a strong personality as well as ambition, which, while controversial, usually translates into a real ability to drive development.

CH: What are the advantages of using the Tron Network?

JS: The main advantages of using TRX are its transaction speed and low fees. They give rise to another advantage which is a network effect: the more people use Tron Network (due to fees and speed), the faster its popularity spreads. Hence, it’s advantageous to have some TRX or TRC tokens since more and more merchants and organizations accept — and even prefer — them for payments. 

From a developer’s point of view, another benefit is the ease of token creation on the Tron Network. 

Finally, if we look at it more globally, Proof-of-Stake (dPoS in this case) chains are less harmful to the environment than PoW, so if you’re someone who cares about the impact of using crypto, this is definitely another advantage.

CH: Can Tron outperform Ethereum? Overtake it?

JS: Not to take away from all its achievements, but Tron has a long way to go before that happens if it ever does. For example, if you take a look at the TVL rankings mentioned above, you’ll see that Ethereum is really, really far ahead of everyone. It’s a huge gap to close, despite very strong efforts from Tron. Of course, there is a possibility that Ethereum slows down its development, or, for instance, The Merge will not go as planned, or people will lose faith in ETH. Any of these events would definitely make outperforming it easier for Tron, but until that happens, let’s not get ahead of ourselves. And, in any case, there’s no shame in being behind Ethereum — most networks are. 

Conclusion

We thank our partners in SwapSpace and John for providing us with insightful commentary. All in all, TRON is one of the go-to smart contract platforms worth your time, whether you want to send and receive stablecoins or build value in crypto. Subscribe to ChangeHero and SwapSpace in social media for more news and updates from the crypto space!

Author: changehero
March 8, 2021

Crypto can be complex at times, and it’s something that is hampering mass adoption. Many individuals and companies in the industry are creating content to increase awareness and to onboard new people. Our guest for today’s interview is Crypto Wendy O. She produces educational content by breaking down complicated topics into easy to understand videos. […]

Women’s Day Special: Interview with Crypto Wendy O

Crypto can be complex at times, and it’s something that is hampering mass adoption. Many individuals and companies in the industry are creating content to increase awareness and to onboard new people. Our guest for today’s interview is Crypto Wendy O. She produces educational content by breaking down complicated topics into easy to understand videos. We asked her about Crypto Twitter, trading, women in crypto and the future. Enjoy the talk!

Into the Cryptoverse

ChangeHero: Let’s start with the name. What’s the story behind the “O” in Crypto Wendy O and The O Show?

Crypto Wendy O: “O” is a circle and circles are forever, they don’t stop and in my eyes, they represent an encompassing eternity. My YouTube channel is here to stay and will encompass all topics crypto and include everyone. 

ChangeHero: Tell us a bit about your background. What was your profession before crypto?

Crypto Wendy O: Before crypto I worked in healthcare servicing clients with infectious disease focusing on HIV/AIDS and coordinating their care from intake and providing them with good qualities of life.

ChangeHero: How did you get into crypto? What caught your attention?

Crypto Wendy O: A family member had asked to borrow my credit card in 2011/2012 to buy Bitcoin and I thought he was crazy! I then grew older and started to understand what was happening around me and used Bitcoin as a tool to make money and opt-out.

ChangeHero: What is your trading strategy and would you recommend it to the readers?

Crypto Wendy O: I trade differently as I pay attention to the markets. Since we are in a bull run I trade less and focus on investing in a solid project, pull out my initial and profit while in bear markets I will trade more and use leverage to increase gains.

ChangeHero: Rekt with trading anytime?

Crypto Wendy O: I have lost a lot. The most notable one was when I was short and Bitcoin pumped about 40% in one day, I lost a lot but made it back, it took some time as it was a big loss.

A look back

ChangeHero: When did you realize that you are on the right path and marketing crypto would work out?

Crypto Wendy O: I just kept the faith and knew I didn’t want to work a 9-5 anymore. I made a point to network and I believed in myself. 

ChangeHero: If you have a chance to change something, what would it be?

Crypto Wendy O: If I went back and changed something I wouldn’t be where I am at today. I do wish I learned about personal boundaries earlier in life.

ChangeHero: Is crypto stressful?

Crypto Wendy O: It can be but realistically, what other job can a stay at home parent do from home and thrive in, I’m blessed I get to provide a good life for my child while making my own schedule and working from home. I’m finishing early today and making pasta with her.  

ChangeHero: What was the most challenging time in crypto?

Crypto Wendy O: The most challenging time was when most of the crypto Twitter attacked me for doing an unpaid interview with a company that ended up failing. I got blamed for their shortcomings when I was doing media for an event that I was not compensated for, the interview was 2m and after that, I was targeted for a long time and still am. I believe it has more to do with me being a female in the space sadly. 

ChangeHero: What do you do in your free time? Any advice to handle stress?

Crypto Wendy O: I box twice a week, martial arts is the only thing that helps me control my mental health issues as I suffer daily and allows me to thrive. 

Enter the Crypto Twitter

ChangeHero: What are the things that you like and don’t like about Crypto Twitter?

Crypto Wendy O: CT is a great place to start to network and I’m so thankful I joined! However, there are a lot of immature malicious people there. I have had people threaten my life, my daughters and try to destroy what I’ve built. It can be hurtful but taking a step back, those who know me know what my intentions are.

ChangeHero: How are other influencers? Do you have any favourites?

Crypto Wendy O: My favourite influencer is my co-host of the Love and Marriage podcast Hotep Jesus. I would call him a public figure he is involved with the Coinbits app allowing folks to have access to Bitcoin and I look forward to working with him in the future and respect his pragmatic approach to crypto and outside factors.

Women in Crypto

ChangeHero: What do you think about the representation of Women in the Crypto and Blockchain industry?

Crypto Wendy O: The professional roles of women in crypto are astounding! However, we are giving the credit we deserve as people pay attention to clickbait and not those of us who educate and build. It will evolve over time.

ChangeHero: How can we change the Gender imbalance?

Crypto Wendy O: There is no need to, change will happen when folks are ready to join, that’s the beauty of Bitcoin and crypto 

ChangeHero: Do female influencers meet up and plan any events or to encourage more women to take part in crypto?

Crypto Wendy O: I can’t speak for other women but I can speak for myself. I have hosted over 4 dozen professional events and crypto meetups and I will not divide due to gender, its defeats the ethos of bitcoin as it is anonymous to an extent.

ChangeHero: Do you have any suggestions for the new and upcoming female influencers?

Crypto Wendy O: Just be you, provide actual value and showcase kindness. Don’t get caught up in ego or needing to prove yourself, your work will speak for you.

Pick one

ChangeHero: Trade or HODL?

Crypto Wendy O: Go 100X long to make it back in one trade (satire).

ChangeHero: Bitcoin or Altcoins?

Crypto Wendy O: Both! 

ChangeHero: Work from home or office?

Crypto Wendy O: Home.

Looking ahead

ChangeHero: What do you think about NFTs? Interested in creating any?

Crypto Wendy O: NFTs are amazing, I grew up around so many talented musicians who fought with their record labels and I believe that is one avenue NTFS can be used for. Also, charity when I was young I couldn’t afford a lot of things the other kids could, I was very poor and ashamed. I was always looking for ways to make extra money and NFTs can be used for kids to create and earn additional income. Possibilities are endless, heck even DV survivors can create NFTs to raise money once they leave the shelter as many of them have nothing.

ChangeHero: Which books do you recommend for a beginner in crypto?

Crypto Wendy O: My free newsletter.

ChangeHero: What do you think about the ongoing rally? Where do you see Bitcoin in the next five years?

Crypto Wendy O: I think it’s great, I’m making a lot of money and I’m excited about the future of Bitcoin as we are in a revolutionary time in the world.

ChangeHero: What’s next for Crypto Wendy O?

Crypto Wendy O: I will keep educating and growing and I have a start-up I’m working on – I think you will love it!

ChangeHero: What message do you want to share with all the women?

Crypto Wendy O: I want to tell all the women reading this that you matter, I see you and your intelligence. Whatever personal shit you have going on keep fighting, we need you and don’t let anyone tear you down because you are worth it. 

That was inspirational, isn’t it? A big thanks to Crypto Wendy O for taking part in the interview. Do check out her YouTube channel and the newsletter.

A note from ChangeHero

Half of our team are women, they are equally important and contributed to the growth of ChangeHero. There are many such talented women in the industry. We are proud to have you all here and thanks for shaping the future of money. We need more of you in crypto.

Happy Women’s Day! You all matter.

We also analyze different topics and cryptocurrencies on our blog. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Reddit and Telegram for all the updates. 


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Author: changehero
February 16, 2021

The guest of today’s interview is a long-time crypto enthusiast and developer, Jordan Earls. He is known for educational and coding work but the greatest accomplishments Jordan made were for the Qtum project. The ChangeHero team asked him to tell more about its most groundbreaking features firsthand and what is planned. The talk wasn’t limited […]

Interview with Jordan Earls, Co-Founder and Lead Developer of Qtum

The guest of today’s interview is a long-time crypto enthusiast and developer, Jordan Earls. He is known for educational and coding work but the greatest accomplishments Jordan made were for the Qtum project. The ChangeHero team asked him to tell more about its most groundbreaking features firsthand and what is planned. The talk wasn’t limited to Qtum, and we spoke about Jordan’s experience with crypto and his thoughts on its future. Enjoy!

First of all

ChangeHero: How did you come up with the name Qtum? Is there any reason behind it?

Jordan Earls: Honestly, it was a name decided just before I came on board. However, I think it’s a cool and memorable name that’s easy to build a brand around, but there’s not much technical reason behind the name Qtum. The other co-founders mentioned that the name came up due to the discovery of Gravitational Waves in late 2015, this inspired the team to use the name Quantum, later spelled as Qtum.

Let’s go back a bit

ChangeHero: We got to know that you started coding when you were a teenager. What made you get into coding and what was the first program about?

Jordan Earls: I found out about coding when my older brother left some printed out tutorial for writing HTML from his school. I followed it and thought it was awesome and went on to learn more and made a few really terrible websites. When I wanted more power than HTML could provide, I started looking at programming languages. My first real programming project though was “mplayer” a really simple media player written in the language DarkBASIC Pro. I still have “version 1.0” of the program somewhere and it was really, really bad code haha.

ChangeHero: How did you get into crypto?

Jordan Earls: I first found out about Bitcoin when Silk Road got shut down and remarked “It’s impressive that drug dealers have created their own internet currency” on my personal Facebook, but I didn’t seriously get into it until 2013 when Dogecoin was announced. I mined over my Christmas vacation on my work PC and made $100 and that instantly got my attention. Afterward I got into the mining community more and then looked more into the technical side. I even made my own cryptocurrency called Megcoin (which was obviously a failure, but it was one of the very early altcoins to get onto Bittrex!) and from there just kept learning more and more and embraced the crypto community.

ChangeHero: What was your favourite cryptocurrency before Qtum?

Jordan Earls: Dogecoin will always hold a soft spot for me, and I still talk to some of the friends I made from the Dogecoin community on a regular basis.

After Qtum

ChangeHero: How did you meet up with Patrick? Whose idea was it to combine UTXO and Smart Contracts?

Jordan Earls: We were actually introduced to each other by Mike [Palencia], another early employee at Qtum. He called in the middle of the 2016 crypto winter and talked about Patrick and Qtum’s ideas. I remember cooking when I received the message and remarked to my wife “This Chinese project wants me to work on some altcoin, it’s probably a scam but I guess I’ll hear them out.” However, when talking to Patrick I could instantly tell this was not a “shit coin”, he had real passion, and the idea he presented for Qtum instantly got my interest in the tech side. The idea he presented was “We’ll have UTXOs, Ethereum Smart Contracts, and Staking on a single blockchain”… but he was basically wanting to bring me on board to figure out how that can actually be built into a technical model. It took nearly 9 months to actually figure out how that model would end up working in the end.

ChangeHero: What does QTUM do better when compared to Bitcoin and Ethereum?

Jordan Earls: Qtum improved both Ethereum and Bitcoin by addressing their shortcomings while working on advancing their features. Qtum took the Smart Contracts concept from Ethereum and made it more flexible, easy to use while also allowing it to function on a bitcoin-based codebase with the UTXO model. From bitcoin, Qtum inherited the UTXO model as most of its codebase, this makes Qtum a very stable and secure platform, and we focused on enhancing some of bitcoin’s long-standing issues such as transaction speed and block times. Qtum is capable of reaching 70 TPS and that’s without having to go to the DGP (Decentralized Governance Protocol) which can modify blockchain features live without the need of a hard fork.

ChangeHero: Transaction fees on Ethereum have become an issue to the users. How does Qtum fix this?

Jordan Earls: We have a couple of tools to address this. Qtum blocks have much more “headroom” than Ethereum. First, our TPS is about 70 which is about 4 times Ethereum. And Qtum blocks are currently 2.0 MB, much larger than Ethereum, and can be scaled on-chain to much larger sizes. So there is plenty of space in the Qtum blocks for transactions before any need for increases.

Also, Qtum supports much more gas in these larger blocks, and has an on-chain mechanism called DGP as I mentioned to adjust gas prices if needed.

ChangeHero: Qtum recently announced Offline Staking. Could you explain it to our readers?

Jordan Earls: Sure. Qtum launched our mainnet in 2017 with Proof-of-Stake but users had to run a full node online 24/7 to participate. We introduced offline staking last August, which allows users to make a “non-custodial” address delegation (they keep full control of the coins) to an online “Super Staker” which stakes the coins for them. These users get a real-time payment when the Staker gets a Proof-of-Stake block reward for them, and they pay a small fee to the Staker. But after the address delegation, they can shut down their wallet and go offline since the Super Staker is doing the work for them. This allows for people to stake their coins while also holding them secure in cold storage such as using a hardware wallet or even a paper wallet.

ChangeHero: Decentralized Governance Protocol (DGP) is another highlighted feature of Qtum. How does it impact the network participants?

Jordan Earls: When we launched Qtum, we took a look at the pain and suffering on some other blockchains for contentious hard forks to increase the block size, etc., and decided to build in a mechanism to make “on-chain” adjustments for some basic blockchain parameters, such as block size and gas fees. This allows us to respond to changing blockchain requirements and adjust these parameters without the need for a hard fork. Basically, the community can reach an agreement and a voting mechanism allows updating these parameters through smart contracts.

ChangeHero: Are there any businesses currently building or using Qtum blockchain? If yes, what kind of a problem are they solving?

Qtum uses
Source: Qtum

Jordan Earls: As you can see in the infographic there are many businesses and services that utilize Qtum in one way or another. We are always adding to this list with new partners and integrations as they present themselves.

A look back

ChangeHero: You have reviewed more than 100 different altcoins. Could you tell us what are the best and worst cryptocurrencies among them?

Jordan Earls: All of my reviews are pretty old so it’s hard to remember even the standouts at the time. I definitely remember the worst project being “Pharmacoin”. This was a project which had sneaked in an exploit that I missed in two separate reviews and it wasn’t until a third review that I finally determined that it had an exploit and warned exchanges and the community about it. It required me to write some custom program to emulate mining and verify how they made blocks in order to actually find the exploit. I’m still a little bitter about that project.

ChangeHero: What would you change if you were in Ethereum’s core team?

Jordan Earls: It’s hard to know exactly what I’d change without all the context that the core team has, same as Ethereum’s core team would likely feel about looking at us. However, the biggest complaint I have around Ethereum is that they tend to think too much in theoretical and academic terms, and less about how the concepts are practically used, and only recently have seemed to focus on security issues that can come with developer exposed concepts that lack “ergonomics” that make mistakes more difficult. Following the project the past few months, I’ve seen a lot more voice put toward this, but to me, it’s really late considering how difficult big changes to the EVM smart contract system are now to fix long-standing problems. The biggest and most obvious to fix is the reentrancy problem which has been a constant source of contract exploits. Even now, this is not a fixed problem and I don’t understand why it isn’t a bigger priority to fix in a way that isn’t “discouraged” by requiring higher gas costs.

ChangeHero: DeFi is trending. What are your thoughts on it? How is Qtum moving forward with it?

Jordan Earls: Yes, this first wave of DeFi is a bit of a bubble, but the promise of DeFi on blockchain, with secure transparent operations that are orders of magnitude better than central banking with fiat using SWIFT and decades-old technology, is the real motivation. I think this is just the first wave for DeFi, and the tools and algorithms built out will give a great future for novel and robust blockchain applications. At Qtum we are building towards DeFi with our initiative for faster block times and also have a DeFi grant program to encourage community DeFi projects. Our EVM can run Ethereum smart contracts basically unchanged, with faster TPS, and working on faster block times, we think Qtum is a great fit for DeFi applications.

Rapid round

ChangeHero: What is your favourite video game?

Jordan Earls: Tough one! Factorio is always kind of my long term game, but I’ve been having a lot of fun with Hollow Knight recently… On the other hand, Kerbal [Space Program] is by far the game I’ve played the most

ChangeHero: Which video game character would you compare Satoshi with?

Jordan Earls: Uhh, not really sure any comparison would do him justice!

ChangeHero: Coding or Photography?

Jordan Earls: Both! Coding to express my logical creativity, while photography to express my artistic creativity. I need an output for both!

ChangeHero: Bitcoin or Ethereum?

Jordan Earls: Very tough. Probably Bitcoin for stability reasons.

About Future

ChangeHero: We got to know that you are working on the QRC protocol to issue tokens. Could you tell us a bit about it? Can we expect qBTC and qETH soon?

Jordan Earls: I believe that with the increasing footprint of Qtum in the DeFi ecosystem, we will be able to see these and several other tokens in the next few months. We’re working directly on making this possible and accessible for the community

ChangeHero: How did Qtum do in 2020? What can we expect in 2021?

Jordan Earls: 2020 was a tough year for everybody, and it was a year where Qtum focused on what was more important to build for the platform and the project in general, 2021 is where this hard work from 2020 will pay off introducing several new and exciting integrations and partnerships, shorter block times, Metamask support for Qtum, and finally we have a solid roadmap for the Neutron project.

ChangeHero: You are the Co-chair of Smart Contracts Alliance and have tons of experience in programming. Could you suggest to youngsters and beginners some resources and where to start building on the blockchain?

Jordan Earls: Find a fun community, pick up a book, and start writing a project! Any project, a dice game, a simple DEX, literally anything that strikes your interest. It doesn’t need to be practical or even useful, but write code while you learn and improve it as you learn more!

That was a fun and insightful talk, wasn’t it? We sure had fun and hope you enjoyed the interview, too! Let us sign off by wishing the Qtum team and community further success.

By the way, we have more Qtum-related content in our blog, where we publish guides, news and interviews. To stay tuned to the latest updates, don’t forget to follow ChangeHero on social media: Twitter, Facebook, Reddit and Telegram.

Author: changehero
December 29, 2020

It is not typical for crypto projects to have a single person representing them. Ravencoin is just the case, best seen as a diverse community, but Tron Black comes pretty close to being a rep. In the community, he is known for his contributions to coding and educating about Ravencoin. We had the opportunity to […]

Interview with Tron Black

It is not typical for crypto projects to have a single person representing them. Ravencoin is just the case, best seen as a diverse community, but Tron Black comes pretty close to being a rep. In the community, he is known for his contributions to coding and educating about Ravencoin. We had the opportunity to interview him about the origins and prospects of the project and crypto in general. From what he shared with us, everyone, newcomers and longtime enthusiasts will certainly learn something new. What are you waiting for, get comfy and dive in!

ChangeHero: Let’s start with the Off Chain 2019 event. We heard that you made a dramatic entrance with a crow mask and Onewheel? What was it all about?

Tron Black: It’s a Raven mask.  Actually it is a plague doctor’s mask, but it looks like a Raven.  At the Peace Coliseum in Utah, I once made an entrance to a Ravencoin meetup, and it was a hit, so I’ve ridden it several times now before my talks in Utah and Las Vegas.  Sometimes I’ll put a Guy Fawkes mask underneath the Raven mask, but the eye holes of the two masks don’t line up well, so I’m OneWheeling blind.

Back to the beginnings

ChangeHero: When did you start to code? In your opinion, what was your first achievement in developing software?

Tron Black: I was “coding” when I was 12 years old by typing in codes from a magazine into an Atari 800.  The first significant program I wrote was software to manage video rentals in BASIC.  But I was too young to drive, so I didn’t end up selling the software.  In retrospect, I should’ve enlisted help, because that was a huge market.

ChangeHero: How did you get into the crypto and what was your first project?

Tron Black: I probably heard about Bitcoin earlier, but the “mining” term led me to believe the computer was crunching numbers to “find” Bitcoin, and that didn’t appeal to me.  It wasn’t until later when it was proposed as a solution to the Cyprus bank failure that I looked at it again and then went down the proverbial rabbit hole.

The first project was Verified Wallet and it was a way to build trust for a crypto address.  I had identified that Bitcoin flipped the trust model.  If you send money with Visa, and don’t get the goods, then Visa can reverse the charge.  If you send money via Bitcoin and don’t get the goods, then you’re out-of-luck.  This meant that you had to trust the crypto address to which you’re sending BTC.  Verified Wallet was a way to build that trust.  Think of it as Verisign [domain name registry provider — CH] meets eBay ratings.  This project was derailed by some bad ideas that were floated about verifying all addresses, and I realized that my message of trust probably would get confused with this other idea of DOXing all addresses.

ChangeHero: Did you contribute to Bitcoin? If yes, in what way?

Tron Black: Not code.  I contributed by mining, holding, spending (on pizza).

About Ravencoin

ChangeHero: It’s unclear who started Ravencoin. Could you give us some details about it and was there any story behind this development? When did you join Ravencoin?

Tron Black: The original idea and imagery was from Bruce Fenton.  Bruce and Patrick Byrne connected and Patrick offered some of Medici Ventures’ development for the project.  I was lucky enough to hear about the idea early on and was able to lead a team of developers to get the first version launched — on Bitcoin’s 9th birthday.

ChangeHero: Could you tell us what it was like on the day of the mainnet release?

Tron Black: There was a shared goal to have a fair launch.  Bruce announced it via Twitter, and Overstock employees were allowed to mine.  We were careful to make sure that the seed-nodes were not mining as they needed to be in place so the nodes could connect together.   Earlier that day (January 3, 2018), I was able to find an article that talked about Bitcoin from the same publication Bitcoin found its genesis text.  Ravencoin used “The Times 03/Jan/2018 Bitcoin is name of the game for new generation of firms” The reason it is important to have a current article in the genesis block is that it proves that there wasn’t pre-mining being done before launch.  Once the genesis block was created, Ravencoin had to be compiled, and released.  Once the seed nodes were deployed, the mining could begin.  I was too busy coordinating, so I didn’t mine the first blocks.  It was stressful.  We had run tests before, and run testnet mining to make sure it all worked, but going live was still nerve racking.

ChangeHero: In what case Ravencoin is better than Bitcoin?

Tron Black: Ok, I’m probably going to get myself in trouble on this question.  Let’s start with the obvious.  You can create and trade assets on it.  That was part of the original vision, even though it didn’t have that capability upon launch.  The asset layer was added later (Nov 5, 2018), but the plan was always to put in features like those in Open Assets, CounterParty, and Mastercoin.  We knew that we could make the experience better because those protocols rode on top of BTC, and since BTC was unaware of them, there was only so much they could do to make a smooth and seamless experience.  Notably, on those other protocols some BTC needed to be transferred with asset transactions so that BTC would allow the transactions.

I am a fan of Bitcoin, but I believe the crypto ecosystem would not be as strong with just Bitcoin. These other projects not only allow for exploration, but they also make Bitcoin stronger because the extended ecosystem provides multiple on and off-ramps and exit strategies for Bitcoin holders. 

ChangeHero: Could you tell us how Ravencoin assets differ from Ethereum assets?

Tron Black: Ravencoin assets have a similar capability to ERC-20.  You can create transferrable tokens, determine their divisibility, and choose the quantity.  That’s where they are the same.  Where they differ is that Ravencoin assets get a unique name.  This helps with branding, and helps prevent fraud and spoofing that is easier on ERC-20 when the identifier is a 40 character hex string.

Ravencoin assets also use the UTXO model – like Bitcoin.  So you can trace all assets back to issuance.  Whereas ERC-20 just adds and subtracts from an account via the smart contract.

At the time of this writing, it is much cheaper to transfer assets on the Ravencoin blockchain than it is to transfer ERC-20 on the Ethereum blockchain.  It is thousands of times cheaper, and that can be important for some projects.

ChangeHero: In July 2020, there was an attack on Ravencoin. Could you tell us a bit about it and how the team handled it?

Tron Black: There have been two vulnerabilities discovered in Ravencoin.  One that allowed extra RVN to be created, and another that allowed asset counterfeiting by exploiting the block reward transaction that was used only once.  Both of these were fixed quickly, once discovered, but it required getting the updated code to all the miners, and that was not easy because of the decentralized nature of the project.  We don’t know who all the miners, and mining pools are.  So we relied on a combination of emailing the ones we did know, along with messages to Discord, Telegram, Twitter, etc.  It turned out ok, but Ravencoin took a reputational blow.  The community has rallied and funded a code security audit that is ongoing right now.  The results of that should be available for publishing by the end of the month, or early next month.

Community and adoption

ChangeHero: Ravencoin is an open-source and a community-driven blockchain. What do you think keeps the volunteers motivated?

Tron Black: The community has been the most amazing part of this project.  There are lots of volunteers to moderate, help new users, run the Discord and Telegram, contribute code, write stories, make videos, etc.  It is inspiring.

ChangeHero: What were your expectations at the beginning, did you imagine there would be good community support?

Tron Black: Ravencoin has exceeded my expectations.  Especially the community.  There are so many me-too coins out there that just copy a successful project and don’t add anything.  Literally, there are thousands of projects, and some of them are well funded.  Oftentimes, the funds came from a pre-mine where the creators either bake some rewards for themselves into the code, or they mine for days, weeks, or months before they make the project public.  Even with the extra funds available to them, it’s understandable that these projects whither because who wants to help a project where it was built just for the enrichment of the creators.

ChangeHero: Ravencoin is focused on the assets and businesses can make use of this. How is the team working towards this?

Tron Black: RVN works like BTC, so it can be used in the same way, but with lower fees.  That’s a given.  It can hold and transfer value.  There are 50+ exchanges where you can trade RVN.  

But the features that make it unique are its asset platform features.  I could talk for hours, or days, about its unique capabilities, but here’s the short version.  You can create your own assets, sub-assets, unique assets, or restricted assets.  Each of these has a unique name. Once you create your asset and claim the name, then nobody else can claim it.  If you create an asset, and then want to create more, you can create sub-assets under your asset.  Then you can choose any name you’d like.   Example: ART/PAINTINGS  If you have the ART asset, you can create any sub-asset under it.  

You can also create unique asset, like ART#Mona_Lisa.   There can only be one because of the # in the name.  Ravencoin will guarantee that for you.

Restricted Assets let you restrict trading if you are the issuer.  This is helpful in some regulated arenas, and can be used for Security Tokens.  These always start with $ so they can be easily distinguished from the other assets that can’t be restricted.

ChangeHero: There’s no “Ravencoin Foundation” or any organization supporting the development. Can we expect to see such in future? Also, could you give us some details about the Medici’s contribution?

Tron Black: This is changing.  A Ravencoin Foundation is being created.  It doesn’t own Ravencoin since Ravencoin is just open-source software and a matching protocol that anyone can use.  The foundation can help support Ravencoin and can help others that want to use the Ravencoin platform for their own projects.

Rapid Round – Pick one or you can also break the rules 🙂 

ChangeHero: Coding or Business Development?

Tron Black: Coding, then Business Development.  I’ve been involved in projects that had the best technology and no customers, and that’s no fun.  I’ve also seen lots of projects that are all hype and no substance — I stay far away from these.  I think Ravencoin has hit a point where it is mature enough and has a strong set of unique features so it needs more exposure and usage. 

As it gets used more, we will collectively build more open-source tools, wallets, APIs, bridges to make it all work.  The foundation is strong, now we build solutions on top.

ChangeHero: Trading or Mining?

Tron Black: Both.  Mining is how Ravencoin is secured, but it is also how it comes into existence.  This is needed.  Next year is the first halvening event.  This means that 2021 could be the cheapest year for RVN.  Supply rates will halve for 2022 and beyond.

Trading is how the value of Ravencoin is set.  But for all crypto-currencies it is also important to have lots of trading.  Lots of trading makes RVN very liquid.  Every day, millions of dollars of RVN change hands.  This means you can easily buy or sell without significantly moving the RVN price.  Unless you’re Michael Saylor, or Grayscale.

ChangeHero: Vitalik or Charlie Lee?

Tron Black: Can I say “both” again?  

I really respect the brilliance of Vitalik Buterin.  I sometimes give him grief when I’m comparing the superiority of Ravencoin assets to ERC-20 tokens, but in fairness, ERC-20 isn’t his, it’s just a template contract on top of a brilliant idea of having a turing-complete smart contract language operating on decentralized nodes.  

If I have to pick only one, I’d pick Charlie Lee.  I’ve met Charlie two times.  Once in line registering as a speaker for a crypto conference in Las Vegas.  And again, at a private dinner with former presidential candidate Ron Paul.  I’ve worked with Charlie’s brother Bobby on the Ravencoin version of the Ballet wallet for safely cold storing Ravencoin.

About the future

ChangeHero: Where do you see crypto heading? Do you think we will reach the mass adoption dream?

Tron Black: Crypto, or more specifically, the ability to transfer value on a decentralized ledger is going to change the world.  Right now, it is like asking “Where do you see the internet heading?” in 1996.  This is the very beginning.  

I have been lucky enough to participate in the computer revolution, the internet revolution, and now the “internet of value” revolution which we call “crypto”.  They feel similar.  I received an Atari 800 for Christmas as a kid, before IBM entered the PC market.  I learned to program as a kid.  I wrote software that demonstrated municipal waste water cleaning equipment for EIMCO, the company that my dad worked for.  I became President of my first company at 18. It turns out you can start your own company and become President for just $50.  I did e-commerce before Amazon.  I founded and sold an Internet utilities company just about the time Netscape went public.  And now I’m participating in the biggest financial innovation in 100 years. 

ChangeHero: What do you think about the regulations of crypto? Will they act as a barrier or help the community?

Tron Black: Some regulation is probably good if it allows big participants to feel comfortable coming into the space.  Crypto itself doesn’t care about the regulations because it is just software running everywhere.

Some regulation that I’ve heard proposed shows just how little some regulators understand about the technology.  

Some regulation is likely to hurt the jurisdiction where the regulation applies.  Imagine if a country regulated the internet so much that those citizens didn’t get to benefit from all the opportunities it brought.  Transitions are scary for the people in power, so I’d expect some bad regulations here and there.  Hopefully, less here.

ChangeHero: Any plans to increase the block size? Can we expect any significant updates to the platform?

Tron Black: The block size is 2x Bitcoin’s size.  The block speed is 10x, so there is 20x Bitcoin’s capacity.  Right now that seems like plenty, but let’s monitor it.

The Ravencoin platform has lots of features, and if you put them together right, it can already enable amazing things that aren’t being done yet.  I think it’s time to focus on security and letting people know what’s possible.  It’s also time to connect Ravencoin to other cross-chain projects with AtomicDEX, renRVN, etc.

ChangeHero: We are aware that you are a serial entrepreneur. What kind of business opportunities do you see in crypto?

Tron Black: Crypto has been different from the internet revolution.  Even in 2013, I realized that the middle-man model that most internet companies rely on doesn’t work for a decentralized crypto project.  The value accrues to the platform token holders.  In this case, to the RVN holders.   Peer-to-peer doesn’t have middle-men.  That sucks for middle-men.

ChangeHero: Finally, what are your suggestions for a beginner in crypto? Would you recommend mining RVN?

Tron Black: Experiment, play, try things.  The best technologists have curious minds.  

I’m excited for Ravencoin, and Ravencoin assets, but I’m also excited about DeFi, Bitcoin, Dash, DEXes, cross-chain swaps, CBDC, stable coins, decentralized swap contracts, interest bearing crypto accounts, STOs, gamified mining, blockchain voting, and all the new innovative crypto projects that are being created today.

I recommend mining, holding, and playing with RVN, and with Ravencoin assets.  Jumping in with Ravencoin is a very low risk way of learning about the technology.


That’s a wrap — huge props to Tron Black for the insightful interview! Ravencoin community is sure extremely lucky to have such a contributor.

If you enjoyed this interview, why not check out our blog for more? All the updates are shared in our social media: Twitter, Facebook, Reddit and Telegram, so give us a follow to keep track of informative and educational content about all things crypto and blockchain!


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Author: changehero
October 15, 2020

Industri Crypto saat ini adalah tempat dimana teknologi mumpuni akan membentuk dunia ini. Sebuah perangkat yang mirip dengan kartu kredit yang memiliki fungsi seperti dompet pada umumnya namun menawarkan opsi keamanan yang sangat maju terdengar seperti sesuatu yang datang dari masa depan. Namun, perangkat ini saat ini telah diproduksi dan bahkan didistribusikan oleh sebuah perusahaan […]

Industri Crypto saat ini adalah tempat dimana teknologi mumpuni akan membentuk dunia ini. Sebuah perangkat yang mirip dengan kartu kredit yang memiliki fungsi seperti dompet pada umumnya namun menawarkan opsi keamanan yang sangat maju terdengar seperti sesuatu yang datang dari masa depan. Namun, perangkat ini saat ini telah diproduksi dan bahkan didistribusikan oleh sebuah perusahaan yang berbasis di Taiwan, yakni CoolBitX. Beberapa waktu lalu, CoolBitX dan ChangeHero bergabung untuk membuat sebuah Pionir Exchange mata uang Crypto yakni CoolWallet S.
Hari ini dengan senang hati kami akan memberitahukan hasil wawancara kami dengan EVP bidang penjualan dari CoolBitX, David Tsai. Dapatkan informasi mengenai rencana dari tim CoolBitX, fakta fakta menarik mengenai CoolWallet S, dan pemikirannya atas industri kripto dan mengapa beliau sangat optimis mengenai hal tersebut.

Permulaan

ChangeHero: Halo, David! Terima kasih karena sudah bersama kita hari ini.
David: Halo dan terima kasih!
ChangeHero: David, apa yang membuatmu terjun ke dunia mata uang Crypto dan bagaimana caranya anda bisa bergabung dengan tim CoolBitX?
David: Awalnya saya hanya membaca ini dan itu mengenai bagaimana Bitcoin diciptakan dan berbagai cara mengenai pengaplikasian Bitcoin, saya langsung tertarik. Setelah itu, saya berpikir kalau industri Blockchain ini sesungguhnya sangatlah berpotensi maka dari itu saya langsung terjun ke dunia ini (blockchain). Lalu saya berjumpa dengan tim CoolBitX.
ChangeHero: Bagaimana caranya Tim CoolBitX mendapatkan ide akan sebuah Wallet Hardware yang terlihat seperti kartu kredit?
David: Awalnya, kami semua ingin menciptakan sebuah hal yang baru dan juga lumrah bagi para pemegang crypto. Saat itu, kami juga ingin menciptakan sebuah Wallet Hardware wireless. Jika dilihat, Wallet Hardware yang populer saat itu adalah yang berbentuk USB stick. Mudah memang jika kami berencana untuk membuat Wallet Hardware wireless yang berbentuk USB stick, namun, kami memutuskan untuk membuat Wallet hardware yang lebih portabel. Kami berniat untuk membuat sebuah wallet hardware yang bisa anda bawa kemana saja tanpa harus susah susah untuk berpikir dimana tempat menyimpannya. Nah, mengingat mayoritas orang orang masih membawa dompet yang isinya kartu kredit dan atm setiap saat, kami langsung terinspirasi untuk membuat Wallet Hardware berbentuk serupa. Yang akhirnya, lahirlah CoolWallet.

Keunikan dan Keamanan dari CoolWallet S

ChangeHero: Apa sih keren dari Coolwallet S? Apa yang membuatnya beda dari yang lain?
David: Selain karena CoolWallet ini wireless dan sangat portabel, CoolWallet S ini menggabungkan kemudahan dan keamanan antara Wallet biasa dan Wallet Hardware. Anda mendapatkan keuntungan dari kedua hal tersebut. Ketika disandingkan berbarengan dengan aplikasi crypto CoolBitX, anda bisa melakukan trade, membeli, dan tentu saja melakukan exchange crypto dengan mudah. Kami juga sudah menambahkan fitur Bitpay support untuk mempermudah transaksi.
ChangeHero: Apakah kami dapat menggunakan bluetooth untuk mengakses CoolWallet S? Apakah penggunaan bluetooth juga menjamin CoolWallet S tidak akan dapat diretas?
David: Tentu saja anda dapat menggunakan Bluetooth. Gini deh: Bluetooth itu berperan sebagai jembatan antara CoolWallet S dan Smartphone. Meskipun jembatan tersebut terhubung secara langsung, masing masing sisi memiliki gerbang untuk memilih siapa yang masuk dan keluar, maka dari itu penggunaan bluetooth itu sangat aman. Dari sisi CoolWallet S, menggunakan Chip Secure element (SE) yang telah diverifikasi dan menjamin keamanan sekelas militer untuk Private keys milik anda. Setiap macam usaha penerobosan atau manipulasi terhadap hardware akan berujung pada mekanisme Self destruction. Dari sisi Smartphone, hampir semua perangkat iOS dan Android menggunakan verifikasi biometrik untuk melakukan login, baik itu wajah ataupun sidik jari. Aplikasi tersebut juga bisa diberi password sebagai pengamanan ekstra. Setiap transaksi membutuhkan otentikasi dari aplikasi dan tombol fisik yang terletak pada wallet itu sendiri untuk menyelesaikan transaksi tersebut.
ChangeHero: Akankah suatu hari nanti semua orang menggunakan mata uang Crypto secacra Massal? Kalau boleh tahu, apa kira kira kontribusi yang anda berikan terhadap mimpi seperti ini?
David: Kalau menurut saya, penggunaan mata uang Crypto secara massal sudah ada di depan mata! Sudah ada banyak layanan pembayaran Bitcoin, mimpi kita untuk melihat penggunaan mata uang Crypto di dunia nyata mulai menjadi nyata. Salah satu layanannya adalah Bitpay, sekarang Bitpay telah secara penuh terintegrasikan ke dalam CoolWallet S.

Kelebihan CoolWallet S

ChangeHero: Mungkinkah bagi anda untuk membagi sedikit statistik mengenai CoolWallet S? Apa kelebihannya? Di mana kira kira pasar yang paling menjanjikan dan kenapa?
David: Untuk saat ini jumlah pemegang CoolWalletS ada sekitar 200.000 dan tersebar di seluruh penjuru dunia. Pasar kami yang sangat menjanjikan saat ini adalah Jepang. Orang Jepang sangat menyukai design dan kemudahan yang ditawarkan oleh CoolWalletS.
ChangeHero: Bagaimana cara anda berkompetisi dengan wallet hardware lain seperti Trezor dan Ledger? Apa strategi yang anda gunakan?
David: Sebenarnya, setiap wallet hardware memiliki fungsi dasar yang sama: menyediakan cara yang aman untuk menyimpan Crypto anda saat offline. Hal yang membedakan adalah fungsi unik dan tentu saja tingkat keamanan yang ditawarkan oleh pihak pengembang. Strategi kami menawarkan solusi untuk orang yang memprioritaskan keamanan wallet hardware dengan kemudahan dan portabilitas yang mirip dengan wallet software.
ChangeHero: Bagaimana cara anda dalam mengatasi FUD? Tantangan seperti apa kira kira yang muncul dalam situasi seperti itu?
David: Saya tidak terlalu merasa terganggu dengan FUD karena saya percaya akan masa depan dan potensi yang dimiliki BTC. Anda harus percaya!
ChangeHero: Dalam situasi COVID-19 ini, apakah ada dampak tertentu terhadap tim dan pekerjaan anda? Dan Juga, apakah situasi ini (Covid-19) mempengaruhi industri Crypto secara menyeluruh?
David: Menurut saya, situasi ini memberikan motivasi terhadap orang orang untuk lebih mencari cara berinvestasi selain hal yang tradisional. Kami juga tentu sadar akan kondisi BTC yang beberapa bulan ke belakang cenderung stabil, ini menandakan sebuah “Kedewasaan”. Mengenai tim dan pekerjaan saya, kami benar benar merindukan situasi dimana kami harus berjumpa dengan orang orang di dalam komunitas. Kami memiliki beberapa kesempatan untuk mendatangi beberapa konferensi virtual yang di mana sangatlah bermanfaat dan asik. Namun saya pribadi lebih cenderung menyukai pertemuan secara langsung.

Rapid Round

ChangeHero: Saatnya Rapid round! Anda boleh memilih salah satu dari pilihan yang diberikan atau menjawab dengan beberapa patah kata saja.
Bitcoin atau Ethereum? BTC dong!
Hustler atau HODLer? HODL
Vitalik Buterin, Charlie Lee, atau Justin Sun? Vitalik
Proof-of-stake atau proof-of-Keys? Proof-of-Stake tentunya
Apakah anda pernah memakai Trezor atau Ledger sebelumnya? Gak! CoolWallet terus dong yang saya pake.

Rencana dan kolaborasi

ChangeHero: Kami merasa senang dengan fakta bahwa exchange ChangeHero telah terintegrasikan kedalam CoolWallet S. Menurut anda, apakah hal ini akan membantu pengguna?
David: Kami juga senang akan hal itu! Dengan adanya akses terhadap fitur exchange crypto-ke-crypto dalam aplikasi saat menggunakan CoolWallet S, tentu saja memudahkan transaksi para pengguna kami. Sebuah situasi Win-Win untuk kita semua!
ChangeHero: Evolusi semacam apa yang anda harapkan dari wallet crypto pada masa yang akan datang? Fitur macam apa yang kira kira paling dinanti nanti oleh para pengguna wallet anda?
David: Kami selalu menambahkan fitur baru dan juga bentuk kerja sama guna menjaga CoolWallet S seapik saat ini setiap saat. Kami membuat poll di Twitter untuk melihat apa yang para pengguna cari dan beberapa jawaban meliputi dukungan layanan terhadap berbagai jenis coin serta lapisan keamanan tambahan (seperti sensor sidik jari pada wallet itu sendiri). Teknisi kami selalu mencari cara untuk terus mengembangkan CoolWallet, maka dari itu berbagai macam saran sangat kami apresiasi!
ChangeHero: Kira kira rencana macam apa yang akan muncul di masa depan nanti? Apakah mungkin akan muncul versi wallet terbaru?
David: Rencana kami adalah untuk melanjutkan inovasi dan menambahkan berbagai fitur ke dalam produk CoolWallet dan Sygna. Kalau untuk versi baru dari CoolWallet? Lihat saja nanti, anda tinggal tunggu tanggal mainnya.
ChangeHero: Kira kira ada yang mau anda sampaikan untuk para antusias crypto di luar sana?
David: Jaga terus kepercayaan kalian!
ChangeHero: When Lambo?
David: Soon!
Kami tentunya merasa bahagia dengan wawancara ini dan kami berharap anda dapat memetik pelajaran dari wawancara di atas! Ada banyak aspek dari CoolWallet yang kami rekomendasikan kepada kalian semua, tentunya bukan cuma kemudahan aksesnya saja, namun juga keamanan dan kecanggihan dari wallet ini juga patut dipertimbangkan. Dan tentu saja selain alasan di atas, alasan paling utamanya adalah anda dapat mengakses ChangeHero di mana saja tanpa perlu takut hal yang tidak diinginkan terjadi pada aset yang anda miliki.
Seperti biasa, beritahu kami jika anda menyukai konten yang kami buat dan jika kamu tertarik untuk melihat konten lain di masa yang akan datang, berikan komentar di blog kami atau di berbagai media sosial ChangeHero seperti: Twitter, Facebook, Reddit, atau Telegram.

Author: changehero
October 8, 2020

Today’s interview is special for our team and, we believe, for all the community: we talked with the man behind privacy-centered Verge Currency, known as Justin Vendetta in the interwebs. He told us how the project started, how it felt to see it take off the ground and what future he thinks is possible for […]

Interview with Justin Vendetta, Founder of Verge Currency

Today’s interview is special for our team and, we believe, for all the community: we talked with the man behind privacy-centered Verge Currency, known as Justin Vendetta in the interwebs. He told us how the project started, how it felt to see it take off the ground and what future he thinks is possible for Verge and crypto in general. Without further ado, enjoy the talk!

Early Days

ChangeHero: From DogecoinDark to Verge. What caused this rebranding? Could you tell us the reason behind choosing these two names?
Justin: Well, I was mining dogecoin at the time, and was always around the message boards and chats. I loved the concept of it. When I launched the blockchain, I thought a very high supply was a good idea, long term. People (including myself) love having a bunch of coins, even if they are a low value. It was fun to tip people and such. After I released a ton of software for DOGED, community members suggested it would be a good idea to rebrand to something more serious, since everyone was starting to take the coin more seriously. We came up with a list of 5 names i think, and set up a week long poll. Verge was the winner!
ChangeHero: What triggered you to begin working on Verge?
Justin: I was operating a mining pool, and so many altcoin projects with premines kept launching, making big promises but never coming through. I was literally adding 2-3 new coins a day, just to have to take them down a week later when the team disappeared. By this time I had become very familiar with Bitcoin and Bitcoin-based blockchains, and decided I should start my own, for fun, and actually try to see what I could accomplish. I never expected it to become this big, but I am very proud of it, and that so many people appreciate my community based, non-ICO/no premine approach.
ChangeHero: Verge is all about privacy. What made you decide that it should be around this?
Justin: I think harvesting peoples data is a breach of their basic rights. The Internet was created to exchange information quickly, across wide areas. Companies that data mine are not the ones paying for operating the Internet infrastructure. Why should they be allowed to take people’s information and sell it? It just doesn’t sit well with me.
ChangeHero: What was your favourite privacy-oriented cryptocurrency before the existence of Verge? 
Justin: Xcoin, which soon became Darkcoin was probably the only coin taking privacy seriously at the time. Bytecoin was another, but it was Cryptonight based, and had a difficult entry level for inexperienced crypto users because of the lack of a GUI. Monero had launched at that time as well, but it was just a copy of Bytecoin.

Community and Team

ChangeHero: What were your initial thoughts while working on the Verge? How did the community react to your proposal at the beginning?  
Justin: Well, since I knew nothing about marketing, I just got friends involved that I had met in various crypto chat rooms. They liked the idea, and some of my initial pieces of software for Verge were from their suggestions. I really thought it would just be something I did as a hobby between jobs for other coins. 
ChangeHero: Verge has one of the biggest communities in crypto. Did you expect such a humongous response? Could you share with us a situation where you felt that you have the support from people?
Justin: On New Years Eve, 2017, I was rushing to release an update. Someone contacted me shortly after midnight. They mentioned they had been watching my github repository, and realized I was at the computer for midnight, working. They had sent me 1BTC as a tip and sign of appreciation. At that time, BTC was valued at something like 16,000.00USD. I actually cried when I saw that, and I still get emotional thinking about it. They even refused to tell me who they were, and deleted their account shortly after. Ok, now I’m getting emotional. There are some really wonderful people in crypto. 
ChangeHero: Verge is completely open-source and supported by volunteers. What makes the volunteers stick with the project and contribute?
Justin: Exactly that! Open source developers love to contribute to open source software because they don’t feel exploited, there is no boss telling them to hurry up and work, and they get to see a very large community be pleased with their work! Anytime Verge is mentioned anywhere, I hope everyone who has contributed feels proud to know they are a piece of it.

Business, Partnerships and Adoption

ChangeHero: There are other privacy-oriented cryptocurrencies like Monero and Zcash. What sets Verge Currency apart from the rest?
Justin: We have no founder’s rewards, and no premine. Also we did not fork from a privacy-based coin to begin with. We focus more on protecting the users IP address for privacy, than we do on hiding transactions. 
ChangeHero: Do you think XVG is undervalued?
Justin: That’s a difficult question. I’ve seen what marketing alone can do to a coin that has no features at all, and I’ve seen excellent projects fall to the bottom. For instance, I think Peercoin is a very undervalued project. It is the original Proof-of-Stake coin, yet it’s ranked something like #500. However, the code is up to date, it’s still maintained, and it’s listed on many exchanges. In my opinion, if substance really matters, it should be much higher valued than 75% of the projects between it and #1.
ChangeHero: We believe that Verge Currency is one of the few cryptocurrencies driving adoption. Partnership with PornHub can be considered as a milestone. How did this collaboration begin?
Justin: They actually approached us. They loved our sense of community. Pornhub is very community-oriented as well, and they understand that large communities are necessary to make big strides. Also I believe our lack of an ICO or pre-mine, makes us very attractive from a legal perspective. 
ChangeHero: Could you give us some stats on PornHub transactions?
Justin: It used to be relatively easy to tell from the invoice on the PornHub site, but since the payment processing software had updates, it’s a bit different now. The last time it was displayed on the invoice, it was in the tens of thousands. We’ve also given tech support via Twitter to many of the PornHub Models who prefer to be paid in Verge.
ChangeHero: Any other exciting partnerships ahead?
Justin: Yes, but you’d have to sign an NDA ;p
ChangeHero: What do you think is stopping the people from using crypto?
Justin: Probably the talking heads on television, who fear crypto wrecking the inflationary fiat markets. People like Peter Schiff can’t stop talking about how bad bitcoin is, yet it continues to go up and prove him wrong. 

Rapid Round

ChangeHero: Bitcoin or Ethereum?
Justin: TRICK QUESTION! BOTH! I have a lot of respect for vitalik and the incredible platform he has created. He literally re-invented the blockchain. I wouldn’t go so far as to say it is better, but it is unique and has grown massively! I find it interesting to see it suffer from the same issues Bitcoin did as it grew, like network congestion, high transaction fees, and exploits/vulnerabilities. Things like that occur naturally with growth. I hope Vitalik is very proud of what he’s done. 
ChangeHero: Trade or Code?
Justin: For me, code. I SUCK at trading lol
ChangeHero: TOR or I2P?
Justin: Tough one. TOR because of the size of the network. I2p has a great future though, and is very different from the TOR tech. 

In to the Future

ChangeHero: Did you face any challenges? What was the most important lesson that you’ve learnt after coming into crypto?
Justin: I’d be lying if I said no. I think any project would. The most important lesson is probably that all software eventually has an exploit. Always stay on guard, and always do research.
ChangeHero: Do you think Verge or any other crypto can replace fiat?
Justin: That depends on government regulations, I think. As long as countries get the right leaders that understand it, I think it will replace fiat. Paper fiat is already being replaced by digital fiat. Once more people learn about inflation, vs crypto which deflates, it’s a no brainer, and people get hooked. I know I did.
ChangeHero: Would you just live off crypto?
Justin: Absolutely. I commend people like Didi Taihuttu (@diditaihuttu), who gave up most of his possessions and fiat years ago, to travel around with his family and live off of crypto. He’s a very energetic and fun guy, and definitely “practices what he preaches” so to speak.
ChangeHero: How do you see the future of Verge and crypto industry?
Justin: Slow growth, explosive growth, slow growth, explosive growth, repeat, until everyone is in!
And that concludes the interview! Thanks to Justin for taking the time for this conversation. Hope you enjoyed it as much as we did!
Keep swapping with ChangeHero for the best crypto exchange experience, and subscribe to our blog and social networks — Twitter, Facebook, Reddit and in Telegram — for quality content. Take care!


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Author: changehero
September 9, 2020

Introduction The ChangeHero team believes that the partnership with Coinify, which we announced a while ago, will go a long way. To give the insight into the vision we would like to build by joining hands, today we share with you the interview with Mark Højgaard, CEO of Coinify, that we were very honored to […]

ChangeHero Interview with Mark Højgaard, CEO of Coinify

Introduction

The ChangeHero team believes that the partnership with Coinify, which we announced a while ago, will go a long way. To give the insight into the vision we would like to build by joining hands, today we share with you the interview with Mark Højgaard, CEO of Coinify, that we were very honored to make it happen.
As a Chief Executive Officer, Mark defines the strategic development of his company. He has had almost two decades of experience in online, mobile and card payment industries, but his forte is innovative entrepreneurship. Aside from Coinify, he also co-founded companies like MySafePay and MobilCash, and he is extensively involved in Forbes Finance Council and Nordic Tech Advocates, among others.

We asked Mark about what makes Coinify a leading company in its sector in Europe and how will the partnership of our teams benefit our customers, and we’re very excited to share his point of view with our readers!

On Coinify, firsthand

ChangeHero: Can you tell us a bit about Coinify for our readers?

Mark Højgaard (MH): Coinify was started in 2014 and is the leading European virtual currency payment provider. We offer a range of solutions within the virtual currency sphere, divided between payment and trading solutions. We help our customers accept cryptocurrency payments and deposits, enable withdrawals into cryptocurrencies and provide their customers with the opportunity to trade between fiat and exchange cryptocurrency from their website and/or app.

ChangeHero: What made you start Coinify? What was the motive behind it?

MH: We saw a need in the market for a safe and compliant means for users to operate and trade between the fiat and cryptocurrency world, and so we started Coinify to act as that bridge. We continue to act as that bridge for our customers today, making it easy for them to transact and trade in their preferred currency, be it fiat or virtual, while still taking advantage of exciting innovations in the finance space.

ChangeHero: What was the most challenging thing when you began working on Coinify and how did you overcome this?

MH: I think, generally speaking, one of the biggest challenges within the virtual currency sphere is regulation, or the lack thereof. Because virtual currencies were a completely new technology, it took some time for the regulatory landscape to catch up. To combat this, at Coinify we have always put emphasis on compliance, working with the Danish Financial Supervisory Authority to become registered, and have even advised regulatory bodies on the creation of the latest AML 5 Directive from the EU.
While navigating the regulatory environment can sometimes be difficult, it is very reassuring to see the progress there has been so far, because stronger regulation within the virtual currency sphere can only mean a better solution for our customers.

On Business in Crypto Today

ChangeHero: Do you think now everybody has access to crypto? How does Coinify contribute to this?

MH: Because of varying regulatory perspectives, access to virtual currencies also varies globally. At Coinify we actively work to make it easier for citizens across the world to access our cryptocurrency services. We are constantly increasing our support for countries across the globe, having added support for Russian citizens and the RUB just last week and begun developing our support for the African continent with support for South Africans and the ZAR last month.

ChangeHero: Can you share some statistics about Coinify? For example, how many merchants have already integrated Coinify, currencies you support, and the countries you operate in.

MH: We currently support over 65 Payment Service Providers representing a massive network of merchants, all operating in 5 continents over 70 countries, and offer solutions with up to 11 virtual currencies and over 25 fiat currencies. These figures are changing and growing everyday.

ChangeHero: Regulation is another important factor in the industry. Can we expect governments to amend the laws and adopt blockchain tech?

MH: At Coinify we place a strong emphasis on compliance, so we have been very happy to see the regulation around virtual currencies develop. The latest AML 5 Directive from the EU has had a positive contribution to making the industry safer and ultimately better for our customers. We expect this trend to continue, and we very much welcome this.

ChangeHero: How is the working environment in Coinify? Did the recent outbreak affect the way the team works?

MH: I am fortunate to have a fantastic team at Coinify who proved to be very agile, especially during the recent outbreak. Like many other companies, we were forced to completely change our means of working and work from home for over a month, and we have thankfully found that it was in fact very successful, and our team managed to overcome this challenge. In fact, some of our team enjoyed the experience so much that they will now continue working only from home.
On Collaboration and Future Plans

ChangeHero: We are happy to have a bilateral partnership with Coinify. Can you share with us how this partnership helps your users?

MH: We are also very happy to have partnered further with ChangeHero, and feel that this benefits the overall virtual currency industry by continuing to provide additional means for customers to exchange cryptocurrency with fiat in both directions, in a safe and easy manner.

ChangeHero: Can we expect a new product from Coinify soon? What is your vision for the future?

MH: We pride ourself at Coinify on continuing to offer valuable solutions and features for our customers. Most recently we have extended our option for buying virtual currencies via bank transfer, by adding additional fiat currencies for customers to choose from, including USD and CAD, DKK, NOK and SEK on top of EUR, GBP and CHF which we already offered.

We expect there to be more updates which will continue to improve the ease with which customers can exchange cryptocurrency to and from fiat in the near and continuing future.

Conclusion

Both Coinify and ChangeHero are working towards the reality in which a financial system is modern, accessible, diverse and safe to navigate. Having joined hands, both our teams have better chances of making it happen! We thank Mark for sharing his piece of mind with us and our readers.
To keep in touch with our updates and never miss a piece of educational and informative content, subscribe to our blog and social media! Find us on Twitter, Facebook, Reddit and Telegram.


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Author: changehero
August 19, 2020

The crypto industry today is a place where cutting edge technology is shaping the world soon-to-be. A credit card-like device that has all the functions of your regular wallet but has the most advanced security options really sounds like stuff from the future. However, these devices are being produced and distributed today by Taiwan-based company, […]

Interview with David Tsai, Executive Vice-President of Sales, CoolBitX

The crypto industry today is a place where cutting edge technology is shaping the world soon-to-be. A credit card-like device that has all the functions of your regular wallet but has the most advanced security options really sounds like stuff from the future. However, these devices are being produced and distributed today by Taiwan-based company, CoolBitX. A while ago, CoolBitX and ChangeHero teamed up to bring a cryptocurrency exchange option into their first-of-a-kind mobile hardware wallet, CoolWallet S.

Today we’d like to share with you an interview we got with the Executive Vice-President of Sales of CoolBitX, David Tsai. Read about the CoolBitX team’s plans, interesting facts about the CoolWallet S and his thoughts on the crypto industry and why he’s so optimistic about it.

Team’s Beginnings

ChangeHero: Hi, David! Thank you for being with us today.

David: Hello and thanks for having me! 

ChangeHero: What brought you to the cryptocurrency industry, and how did you join the CoolBitX team?

David: After reading some material about how Bitcoin was created and how it could be used, I instantly became a fan. Shortly after, I saw the true potential of the blockchain industry and decided to jump right in. That’s how I landed at CoolBitX. 

ChangeHero: How did the team come up with the idea of a hardware wallet that looks like a credit card?

David: From the start, we knew that we wanted to create something that was both new and familiar for crypto holders. We also knew that we wanted to create a wireless hardware wallet. The most popular hardware wallets at the time seemed to only come in that USB stick style. It would have been easy for us to create a wireless version of the popular USB style, however, we decided that we could take a step further and make it even more portable. The idea was to create a hardware wallet that you could take anywhere without the hassle of figuring out where to store it. Seeing as how the vast majority still carry wallets with their bank and credit cards with them at all times, we figured that making a hardware wallet that fits in with the rest of your cards would make the most sense. Thus, the CoolWallet was born. 

Uniqueness and Security of CoolWallet S

ChangeHero: What’s so cool about CoolWallet S? What makes it unique?

David: Other than the fact that it’s completely wireless and incredibly portable, the CoolWallet S combines the convenience of a hot wallet with the security of a hardware wallet. You get the best of both worlds. When paired together with the CoolBitX Crypto app, you can trade, purchase and, of course, exchange crypto with ease. BitPay support has also been added to allow for crypto transactions at places that support it. 

ChangeHero: Can we rely on Bluetooth? Does it ensure that CoolWallet S cannot be hacked?

David: You can absolutely rely on Bluetooth. Think of it this way: Bluetooth acts only as the bridge between your CoolWallet S and your smartphone. While the bridge itself is a fully encrypted 1 to 1 connection, the security gates at each end of the bridge that allow who can successfully go in and out are also very secure. On the CoolWallet S side, the Secure Element (SE) chip is third-party verified and ensures military grade protection of your private keys. Any attempted break in or tampering of the hardware will result in its self-destruction. On the smartphone side, almost all Android and iOS devices require a biometric verification for login, whether it be face or fingerprint. The app can also be set up with a password for an extra layer of security. Finally, each transaction requires both authentication from the app and a physical button press on the wallet itself to be completed. 

ChangeHero: Do you think that in 2020 it is easy and secure for a user to store cryptocurrency or are we far away from achieving this?

David: Thanks to the growing popularity of online crypto exchanges and the convenience of their smartphone apps, storing cryptocurrency is more convenient and easier than ever. While it does seem a lot of people still keep their assets on a cryptocurrency exchange (for convenience sake), our goal is to make the transfer of crypto into cold storage easier and more affordable. The growing popularity of cryptocurrency also means that hacks and scams are more commonplace, unfortunately, so the most secure way to store crypto is still in cold storage. 

ChangeHero: Will there be a day where we can see people use cryptocurrency in everyday life? How are you contributing to this mass adoption dream?

David: That day is already here! With many Bitcoin payment services already available, the dream of paying with cryptocurrency out in the real world is becoming a reality. One of these services, Bitpay, is now fully integrated within CoolWallet S. This allows our customers to pay with the crypto stored in their CoolWallet at businesses who accept Bitpay. 

CoolWallet S Strengths

ChangeHero: Can you give us some statistics about CoolWallet S? Where does your stronghold lie? What is the most promising market and why?

David: Currently, there is somewhere around 200,000 units of CoolWallet S in the hands of people all over the world.  
Our most promising market right now would be Japan. They really love the design and the convenience of CoolWallet S. 

ChangeHero: How do you compete with other hardware wallets like Trezor and Ledger? What is your strategy?

David: Down to its core, a hardware wallet’s basic function is basically the same across all of the major brands: providing a secure way to keep your crypto offline. What differentiates them are the unique functions and more importantly, the level of security they can provide to their customers. Our strategy is to offer a solution for those who are looking for the security of a hardware wallet with the convenience and portability of a software wallet. 

ChangeHero: How do you handle the FUD? Did you face any challenges in overcoming such situations?

David: I never really had any issue with FUD because I strongly believe in the future and potential of BTC. You got to believe! 

ChangeHero: Regarding the COVID-19, how did it impact the team and your workflow? Also, do you think it affected the crypto industry as a whole?

David: I think that maybe COVID-19 has encouraged more people to look into more non-traditional forms of investment as a result of these economically unstable times. We’ve definitely noticed that BTC has more or less stabilized in recent months which does indicate some maturity. Regarding my team and our workflow though, we definitely miss going to trade shows and meeting all of those in the community. We have had the opportunity to attend some virtual conferences which were great, however, I much prefer face to face meetings.  

Rapid Round

ChangeHero: Okay, time for the rapid round. You can either pick one from the options or answer in a couple of words.

Bitcoin or Ethereum? BTC all the way.

Are you a hustler or HODLer? HODL

Vitalik Buterin or Charlie Lee or Justin Sun?Vitalik

Proof-of-Stake or Proof-of-Keys? Proof-of-Stake

Have you ever used Trezor or Ledger? Nope! CoolWallet S has been and always will be my go-to. 

Collaboration and Plans

ChangeHero: We are happy that ChangeHero’s cryptocurrency exchange option is integrated into CoolWallet S. How would this help your users?

David: We’re super happy about it too! Having the ability to do a crypto-to-crypto exchange within our app while using their CoolWallet S to sign for the transactions makes things more convenient for our users. It’s a win-win for everyone! 

ChangeHero: How do you expect the crypto wallets to evolve in the future? Which features do you think are the most awaited by your customers?

David: We’re always adding to features and partnerships to keep the CoolWallet S as current as can be. We’ve conducted some polls on Twitter to see what people are looking for and some of those answers include more extensive coin support and even more layers of security (like a fingerprint sensor on the wallet itself). Our engineers are always looking for ways to improve the CoolWallet so any other suggestions are greatly appreciated! 

ChangeHero: What are the future plans for CooBitX? Can we expect a new version in the future?

David: Our plan is to continue innovating and adding new features to our CoolWallet and Sygna product lines. As for a new version of CoolWallet? Well, that’s under wraps at the moment, however, rest assured that we do have some exciting things planned for its future.

ChangeHero: Any closing remarks to the crypto enthusiasts out there?

David: Keep the faith!

ChangeHero: When Lambo?

David: Soon!

We definitely had fun with this interview and hope you find it insightful too! We can’t recommend CoolWallet S enough for its convenience, security and awesome tech. And, obviously, for the reason that you can exchange crypto with ChangeHero on the go while being sure your assets are safe.

As usual, let us know how you liked the content and if you would like to see more of it in the future, in the comments to our blog or in ChangeHero’s social media pages and groups: Twitter, Facebook, Reddit or Telegram.


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Author: changehero
August 8, 2019

The world of crypto is developing at high speed every day. There are a lot of services already existing: exchanges, monitorings, aggregators, etc. But the question of entering the crypto market is still tough for many people. There are not too many properly developed fiat-to-crypto fintech solutions. It’s difficult and risky to build one: many […]

Interview with Indacoin Businness Development Chief

The world of crypto is developing at high speed every day. There are a lot of services already existing: exchanges, monitorings, aggregators, etc. But the question of entering the crypto market is still tough for many people. There are not too many properly developed fiat-to-crypto fintech solutions. It’s difficult and risky to build one: many of the existing ones still have problems with trust, reliability and regulation by law and banks.

One of the leaders of this field who could manage to solve the mentioned issues is ChangeHero’s good partner Indacoin. This project has been taking part in the game since 2014 and became one of the most known services for purchasing crypto with credit cards. We were lucky to have a conversation with Guilherme Jovanović, Indacoins business development director. We had a talk about the difficulties for the new services, how crypto is changing the world, and how the market unites people around the globe. Learn more in our interview.

So, let’s dive in!

ChangeHero: Hi! Please tell us about yourself a bit? Where are you from, what’s your position at Indacoin and what brought you to the crypto field?

Guilherme: Hi! My name is Guilherme and currently, I’m the business development director at Indacoin.

I was born in Switzerland and I have Serbian & Portuguese roots. I have moved to Russia about a year ago and I’ve been living here since then. I really enjoy Moscow’s architecture, spectacular views and lifestyle. Being able to speak the Russian language fluently is one of my major goals and one of the drivers that brought me to this country.

I have always been passionate about cryptocurrencies, since my early years studying Business and Economics in Geneva. It’s an emerging field that is growing exponentially and I deeply believe in this high tech. In my perspective, I see that technology had strong impacts in various sectors, but quite little when it comes to our financial system which is still underdeveloped. International transactions, for example, take too long and are subject to high commissions, even when it comes to cash withdrawals. These are some of the reasons why I believe that crypto could be a viable solution and why I ended up working in this field.

Guilherme Jovanović
Guilherme Jovanović

ChangeHero: So we guess you also have a personal interest in developing the project. It seems to be your passion, right?

Guilherme: Exactly! I am very passionate about the crypto industry and the Indacoin project. I feel grateful for having the opportunity to contribute in a project that I believe in.

With my team, I have attended several conferences in different countries — where we have encountered many interesting individuals from around the globe with innovative ideas and projects. It’s very rewarding to be able to help them and watch their growth closely.

You have to bear all the risks by yourself — in case of a chargeback, you will have to take full responsibility.

ChangeHero: Sounds inspiring! Is it really difficult to build a service like that? And what obstacles did you encounter on the way?

Guilherme: Of course it’s very difficult to build something like this from scratch. The main issues are the legal, amount of existing fraud and obtaining trust from banks. In fact, 60% of payment attempts come from stolen cards — our research team found that when we first launched. It’s very difficult to deal with all the chargebacks and refunds, it can lead any business to bankrupt.

I’ve met with other companies who tried to develop similar credit card gateway services but they failed enormously. It’s not so hard to find acquiring banks, develop a payment gateway, get a KYC provider, blacklist some countries etc. and expect things to go smoothly. Everything may look fine at first, but after few months of operations, companies will start getting notifications of chargebacks and at some point, they realize that they need to pay over $50’000 in refunds for example.

This is the main obstacle — that hackers can easily pass KYC and get large amounts of money from stolen credit cards. We have developed a strong anti-fraud system which is continuously being improved and requires us to have a full department that is totally focused on it. In case our system has doubts about the reliability of a transaction, our anti-fraud team will call the user and make a short interview in order to determine if the transaction is fraudulent.

Overall, there are many complicated and costly obstacles for new entrants and it can take years of development and hard work in order to be fully operational and be trusted by individuals and institutions.

We managed to overcome all these obstacles because our team is full of extremely motivated and talented individuals who managed to make Indacoin the top provider of fraud-free banking cards processing.

ChangeHero: So the main obstacles are about fraud, bank’s trust, but what about competitors? Do you have many?

Guilherme: Yes, we do have some competitors. I receive this question a lot from our partners, sometimes they mention that others offer lower fees. But there are questions about the legitimacy of these “low fees” that should be taken into account.

There are many competitors who offer similar fiat-to-crypto services, but most of them don’t take responsibility for chargebacks, rolling reserves and KYC. So, at first sight, it might seem like an easy and cheap option but then it usually turns out to be extremely expensive because there are hidden fees and charges applied as well. Also, you have to bear all the risks by yourself — in case of a chargeback, you will have to take full responsibility.

I’d say that we only have one direct competitor. We respect our competitors and I won’t mention the exact names. They are the only ones who cover the risks like we do, yet they claim their fees are between 3,5% to 4%. But after that, they add extra/hidden fees as well. For example, $10 is the minimum transaction fee. Meaning, that a user who only wants to buy $50 of BTC, for example, will pay about 20% fee to one of our competitors. As well they already add their own markup on crypto price which makes it very tricky for partners and users. In the end, the claimed rate of 3,5% is hardly achieved.

At Indacoin we value transparency as one of the most important values in our business model. We don’t find it ethical to add hidden and extra fees, as most people won’t be aware of that and may be tricked.

In addition, we offer more than 100 altcoins for sale, while our competitors usually offer only 5 or 6 options.

Regarding the advantages for partners, we don’t require placing our logo everywhere on their websites. Thus, our solution is a fully white-label and the transactions will occur very smoothly for our partner’s users.

ChangeHero: As far as I know, most of the exchanges prefer to integrate your API, so why do they pick you, apart from the transparent fees and flexible marketing policy?

Guilherme: Our API is technically quite simple to integrate. I’ve had situations when the partner’s development team was skilled enough to integrate the solution within 1 hour. We don’t have much bureaucracies to start if a partner is interested, he can even start the same day we receive the request. We make it very easy both in a technical and also in a legal way. We don’t want to waste time and we aim to provide a quick and easy solution by delivering it fast and effectively. Furthermore, we are open to working with smaller projects as well, not only with big established companies.

ChangeHero: Do we get it right, a service which wants to integrate your API just needs to contact someone on your team? How is it done?

Guilherme: Actually, we get lots of partnership requests daily, we have a form where potential partners can tell us what they’re looking for and we’ll get in touch with them. Another way is to contact our support so they will connect you to someone on our team who can help.

ChangeHero: In your opinion how crypto processing on Indacoin or partners like ChangeHero is better than a traditional exchange? What are the real advantages?

Guilherme: I think the main advantage is speed. For instance, in other exchanges, you need to make a bank transfer which can take several weeks in some countries. The rates will obviously change during that period — as a result, users will not get the same amount as was displayed first. Sometimes the rate may change so abruptly that the person would prefer not to buy anymore.

The second advantage is simplicity. Users are not required to create an account or to upload proofs like utility bills or something else. We allow users to basically do the transaction at that moment without any requirements of registration and additional documentation. As long as the user complies with all the details we are asking for, then the transaction can be done very quickly. Compared to traditional exchanges, that is our main advantage.

And, of course, since VISA and MasterCard are the most popular ways of making online purchases. This facilitates the way of buying crypto for new users — especially for someone who has never purchased crypto assets before, it’s like booking a flight online, anyone can do it.

Indacoin user interface
On top of that Indacion has a convenient design and great usability

ChangeHero: Actually, some users say that Indacoin KYC is quite tough. What is really required to confirm your identity?

Guilherme: Actually, in my personal experience, most of the time people don’t pass the confirmation because they don’t pick up their phones. This is, in fact, a funny reason. We make a phone call and give them a code number which needs to be inserted. But many people get scared or maybe give fake phone numbers, or they just don’t pick up, which is strange. Although all the documents may be okay, they can’t complete the process without providing the code from the phone call.

The KYC itself is quite easy, one just needs to upload a selfie with a valid ID and write a small handwritten text on a piece of paper, that’s all.

ChangeHero: You said that you cover the risk of losing money, but for example, if something goes wrong, how do I get the funds? What is your refund process like?

Guilherme: First of all, if you made a transaction that wasn’t accepted for some reason, the money will not be taken from your account. But sometimes the transaction is accepted but the bank of the user holds it unfortunately, some banks are still not crypto-friendly so they might hold the operation for a while. The best solution, in this case, is for the user is to call his/her bank.

In any case, whatever happens, we always make a refund to the user if he didn’t receive the crypto for some reason. The way to be sure is to contact our team via email, phone or website chat and let us know what happened. Our support team is available 24/7 for any kind of inquiries.

ChangeHero: We’ve talked about the transparent fees a few minutes ago, but some still think that they’re just too clouded. How much do you actually charge? And how can it change depending on different countries or payment systems on your platform?

Guilherme: It’s true, the fees on our exchange platform may vary. It mainly depends on the country and type of card, whether it’s Visa or MasterCard. But I’d say that the average fee will be around 7% or 8% and sometimes it can go up to 14%.

However, once you insert the amount in FIAT, you will automatically see the amount of crypto that you will receive. Thus, there is nothing clouded about it, it’s crystal clear.

And please note that for our partners who want to integrate our white-label API, we offer a 5% fixed rate.

ChangeHero: The pricing is clear — what about time? How long does it take on average to make a transaction?

Guilherme: it’d say it takes 20 minutes approximately. But it can be less — down to 5 minutes from the second transaction. Once we’ve already got the user’s details, there is no need to make the KYC again, it saves a lot of time. Unless the user wants to use another card, then the KYC procedure is required. In any case, it actually all depends on the user and how fast he uploads his documents.

ChangeHero: I’d like to ask you about your plans for the next several years. What is your company currently working on?

Guilherme: We actually have our IEO coming at the end of August, where we will release INDA tokens. The main goal is to boost our affiliate program and offer rewards to our users and affiliates in the form of cashback with INDA tokens. We find that this will be a great way to promote our community and also give them more motivation to continue working with us. We will start our initial offering in Waves Platform since they have been one of our oldest partners and we enjoy working together.

And other plans for the next several years include obtaining licenses for the USA and Japanese markets. Moreover, develop an instant crypto-to-fiat gateway through Visa and MasterCard. We want to give users the ability to withdraw their funds instantly.

And you possibly heard about our wallet which is top-rated in Appstore or Google Play — we are developing that further, adding more features and continuously improving it.

ChangeHero: Since we’ve started talking about the crypto world and the future, how do you see the crypto world during the next years?

Guilherme: I have joined the crypto world about half a year ago- and I’ve already seen a lot of changes. Since I started until now, there is an increased adoption, by analyzing the bitcoin price you can verify this: a few months ago, Bitcoin price was $3000 now it’s about $11000 and it keeps increasing. It’s not just about the price of bitcoin, which is just one indicator that the market is growing. Another indicator is that several big corporations are entering the market. For instance: Starbucks, Nike, Walmart, and, of course, Facebook with its Libra project among many other corporations. We can see that these big players understood the value of crypto and blockchain technologies, and want to apply it to their businesses. At this point, not even strong Government restrictions have the power of stopping this progress. Anyone can have access to crypto anywhere in the world, regardless of the local crypto regulations. Even in China, it is “illegal” but now, it’s already legal to hold crypto assets. So, I believe during the next few years, this market will become even more attractive with new projects popping up, big corporations entering and massive world adoption.

It also doesn’t make sense to me that in the 21st century where there are drones, robots, advanced AI technologies and people are still using paper money.

For me, it’s not acceptable that we give governments and banks full power of controlling our money and its value. I think people should hold that responsibility and they should be able to transfer money peer to peer without paying any fees and long waits. Of course, at the moment we do not have the infrastructure to replace the current FIAT currencies fully. However, having a balance between FIAT and CRYPTO has become common. Many hold crypto as a way of storing value and using it as a security. Especially in countries with weak currencies, Bitcoin has become a major success.

I see a bright future for crypto, and I believe that one day there won’t be paper money anymore, and crypto will be used as a global currency.

ChangeHero: It sounds great! As we are finishing, is there anything else you’d like to tell us so we can share that?

Guilherme: Right now, I think I’ve shared pretty much everything that I can think of. My last remark is that we want to focus on new strategic partnerships and enable other businesses to start offering credit card payment options easily and free of risks & fraud.

We are inspired by the ideas of secure, private and decentralized money and our vision is to open the doors of the crypto world to a new user.

Buy crypto with your credit card only with the trusted services. ChangeHero in collaboration with Indacoin is ready to provide it — visit ChangeHero and give it a try!

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Author: changehero
August 5, 2019

The majority of crypto market participants are engaged in two general money-making activities: trading and mining. While everything is more or less clear with trading, mining is still enigmatic. There are a lot of questions: if mining is still profitable in 2019 if there is any space for new miners, what does it actually takes […]

The majority of crypto market participants are engaged in two general money-making activities: trading and mining. While everything is more or less clear with trading, mining is still enigmatic. There are a lot of questions: if mining is still profitable in 2019 if there is any space for new miners, what does it actually takes to start a mining business and how it will change your life.

We had the luck to find a miner who agreed to share details about his business, view, and ideas. He preferred to remain anonymous so ChangeHero decided to give him an alias. Welcome, MiningHero and his mining insights in our fresh and crispy interview!

Intro

ChangeHero: Hi! Please tell about yourself a bit.

MiningHero: Hi! I would prefer not to reveal my real name and homeland for security reasons but I can tell you that I am a miner and co-founder of a quite large mining farm. We produce Bitcoin there.

ChangeHero: How did you come to this business? What motivated you to start mining?

MiningHero: Actually I have been running different projects as an entrepreneur with my partners for some time before mining. It was spring 2017 when all the internet started boiling about cryptocurrencies, mining and especially BTC and ETH. We knew about mining long before but never considered it as a serious business. But in 2017, the crypto market started growing extensively and we realized that there were opportunities we could use. So we decided to create the mining enterprise.

ChangeHero: Where is your farm located and why there?

MiningHero: Our farm is placed in Norway. The reason is simple: my partners and I already run another enterprise there so we have experience of running a business in that country.

The government is absolutely neutral about mining. No one bothers the business and no one supports it. But we were lucky to meet the state program of supporting building Data Centers. All data facilities with the power of more than 2MW gain concessions for electricity tariffs. The government removes its tax fees from bills. Since our farm is positioned as a Data Center this works for us as well, so the enterprise entered the program at the end of 2017.

Apart from that, the energy industry in Norway is quite unique. 98% of energy in the country is produced by hydroelectric power stations. Since this kind of station doesn’t need any fuel, electrical energy is the cheapest in Europe.

Mining farm
The farm outside

About Business

ChangeHero: Has your business changed a lot from the start?

MiningHero: The business is not changing significantly. We have built the farm and we just keep on working. Mining is a stable process, you just need to provide technical support and pay the bills.

ChangeHero: What problems are you facing today?

MiningHero: The only serious problem we have is that Norwegian banks refuse to process incoming payments from crypto exchanges. Selling crypto is impossible if you are a Norwegian company with an account in a Norwegian bank. But my partners and I are ideological hodlers: we don’t sell our Bitcoin, just accumulate it instead and wait for the right moment to sell and gain extra-high profit. So it’s totally okay for us.

ChangeHero: If you do not withdraw funds from crypto, what makes your business profitable?

MiningHero: I can’t tell how profitable this business is. Mining can’t be separated from trading and investing. Also, it depends on how to count. Let’s say, if we had produced crypto and sold it every day, then yes, it would be very profitable, especially in the first half of 2019. Electricity expenses for mining Bitcoin are paid off several times. Moreover, it’s production price is directly dependent on the market rate. The less it costs the easier to mine it — and the better it’s to us as miners and hodlers. Bitcoin will go extremely high one day and we will gain an outstanding profit from selling our storages.

ChangeHero: Do I get it right that “crypto winter” even gave you favours?

MiningHero: Yes, you are right. We work more efficiently during the winter. The lower the rates are, the fewer miners work, and the more each of them earns. It’s the basics of mining.

ChangeHero: Did mining change your life?

MiningHero: Actually I have several businesses. Mining is not the largest one among them so I can’t say it changed my life abruptly. But it’s still bringing new experiences, fun, people, and knowledge. Since the opening of the farm, I haven’t been taking too much part in the operational management.

But, for example, one of my friends had his life changed in a moment. We have opened our farm in Norway and invited him to work as a technical chief. So he moved to Norway from his origin country with wife and two daughters. They are happy and grateful for such an opportunity.

ChangeHero: What do you think about POS algorithms and do you plan to work with them?

Proof of stake (PoS) is a type of consensus algorithm by which a cryptocurrency blockchain network aims to achieve distributed consensus. In PoS-based cryptocurrencies, the creator of the next block is chosen via various combinations of random selection and wealth or age (i.e., the stake). In contrast, the algorithm of proof-of-work-based cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin uses mining; that is, the solving of computationally intensive puzzles to validate transactions and create new blocks.

MiningHero: POS does not directly refer to hardware mining since it requires tokens to confirm not computing power. But I had experience with it in my other business. Honestly, I don’t see too much potential in POS.

ChangeHero: Is there still space for new players on the market like a common person with some private savings?

MiningHero: The space on the market is infinite. New people join every day. There are no limits. Come and mine if we are talking about the mining market.

But, I do not recommend entering mining for an average person. I’d prefer buying Bitcoin with some common algorithms: with fiat money or on exchanges. The Data Center must be big and powerful to be really profitable. I have described this in one of my previous answers. The fewer miners the easier to mine — this will work backwards as well, so the more miners are in the game the more powerful farm you need to gain profit. And a big farm will require very serious technical care: hardware service, electricity, cooling system. I’m not mentioning law regulations because it depends on the country but it may be a serious problem, too. Small farms don’t generate that much revenue to care about.

For example, my farm has 4MW power. It’s the power output of an average factory. It produces 88db of noise which is equal to a jet plane taking off. It also generates a lot of heat that must be absorbed. Holding such a facility is not easy at all.

Crypto miners
How the farm looks inside

On Community

ChangeHero: How do you see the crypto market today? Are there free niches currently?

MiningHero: Crypto is not a market actually. It’s an ecosystem. Adoption among people is not very high at the moment. When cryptocurrency becomes more popular, adopted and used in everyday life there will be niches. In fact, this system contains only two niches at the moment: trading and mining.

I often talk to financial experts. Many of them say that the financial world is currently living awaiting for the new black swan. It’s highly possible that in our lives we will face a very serious financial crisis. It may be even a fall of all the fiat system. So it doesn’t really matter if Bitcoin will cost $50,000 or $50,000,000 if it will be impossible to buy anything with the dollar. Probably, I will diversify my assets into different forms to save the cost of assets. Crypto is one way of protecting assets. This is how I see the market.

ChangeHero: Who do you look up to among crypto enthusiasts, bloggers, experts, etc?

MiningHero: I think that an enthusiast is a person who dedicates himself and his work to some ideas in order to move it forward. The only person who I can call a true enthusiast is Andreas Antonopoulos (a blogger, entrepreneur, programmer, author of several books about crypto).

I’m not actually a pro and don’t dive into the crypto world too much. I don’t surf a lot and read different people’s blogs and columns. I can’t even tell you a few names and I don’t consider myself a person worth asking questions about outstanding crypto persons.

ChangeHero: A traditional question: how much will BTC and ETH cost in a year?

MiningHero: I don’t make forecasts, but we have the idea that crypto will cost much higher in the future. We take it as a basis. How much higher and when — we can’t say and we don’t really care much. We run our business based on cold calculations and calmness. We don’t rush as the farm is not the project we run to earn for living. So we will just wait for the right moment when the price will be much higher. What exactly price it will be and when will we see it on market caps — honestly, I don’t know.

ChangeHero: It would be really interesting to come back to this matter in about 6 months and have a look, which of your forecasts came true. We wish you success in all your businesses and hope for future cooperation.
Thank you very much for the interview!

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