Adel ▲ Opinion ▲ 14 ▲ Crypto, For the People, By the People

Crypto, For the People, By the People

How Blockchain Subverts Today’s Entrenched Power Structures

By:  Gabriel Dusil, co-Founder & General Manager,
Adel Ecosystem Ltd.
&:  John McLeod, Founder,
JEA Associates Ltd.

Mankind has been shaped by borders, whether physical, geographical, technological or financial. Societies have found ways to structure themselves into coherent and ordered blocks. Over the last few centuries empires have risen and fallen, wars have been waged and physical borders have moved. Governments, institutions and multi-lateral structures underpinning political and financial borders have remained intact.

The financial crash of 2008 shook public confidence in banks and government-backed financial institutions that saw billions of dollars, euros, and pounds spent on shoring up the financial system through quantitative easing. Public confidence in financial institutions and governments was at an all-time low. It is no coincidence that Bitcoin emerged out of this economic crisis where traditional institutions failed. A viable alternative was needed without the oversight of big-brother.

Blockchain services undermine traditional forms of governance because it’s decentralized and its users are typically anonymous. This assumes impunity from government and central banks. Anonymous actors are micro components of a growing ecosystem. To date, this crypto sphere has been relatively left untouched by the authorities of the “real-world”, where regulation typically lags innovation.

This raises real questions about how crypto’s services should be managed. Techno-libertarians envision utopian self-regulation, with codified rules that evolve with the technology. Anyone who denies these programmatic rules essentially forfeits their right to participate in this space. Crypto-anarchists envision a free-rule zone for blockchain businesses and unconstrained virtual currency commerce. Within this zone, blockchain businesses would operate free from government intervention and regulation. Bitcoin is essentially a sandbox experiment that is demonstrating how crypto technologies will be successful and be applied to real-world scenarios.

Bitcoin is a sandbox experiment,
demonstrating how crypto will be successful.

Whichever form it takes, blockchain technology will need to entertain the notion of regulatory oversight, for it to gain mainstream acceptance. For this to happen, both the public and private sectors should have a seat at the same table, to establish a common ground for governance and enforcement.

Creating and adopting an agreed set of standards requires consensus from all major stakeholders. Internet’s protocols (e.g. TCP/IP, HTML, and Java) took years before reaching mass adoption. But eventually, this was achieved through well-constructed and easy to implement standards. Crypto coders redefining their own product lifecycle to accelerate adoption by excluding the powers-that-be from the socio-economic power pyramid. For the time being, they are at the pinnacle of this power hierarchy, with governments, banks and even citizens treated as outsiders. But history has shown that closed solutions are not scalable, to the same potential as standards. Any developer can set the rules of their homegrown blockchain. Have the geeks inherited the earth?

We have reached a unique point where the traditional power brokers who normally put the brakes on disruptive technologies have been sidelined in favor of a newly defined crypto power hierarchy. Governments nor banks control the crypto sphere, but they maintain partial control of cyberspace and the real world. Within the isolated world of crypto, this hierarchy works, but if mass-market adoption is the plan then consensus with the brick and mortar world is needed. The open question is whether this is in the interest of crypto coders, miners, and service providers.

Who could have predicted the spectacular rise in the value of Bitcoin and Ethereum just five years ago? A 100 US$ investment in Bitcoin in 2013 would now be worth 7000 US$ today[i]. Satoshi Nakamoto could not have predicted the creation of nearly 4000 virtual currencies on CoinLib[ii] ten years after releasing his white paper and over 100 thousand token contracts[iii] on the Ethereum blockchain. Only a brave person can envisage what the next five years have in store. It is safe to conclude, however, that crypto has proved its detractors wrong and its potential benefits to humanity are vast. Interoperability, scalability, security, and ease of use for the average person are all questions that need to be answered.

For the first time in history, people have the potential to break down the traditional borders that have divided them, whether geographically, technologically or economically. Individuals are empowered to create crypto services free from government regulation or any other centralized authorities. We have currency for the people by the people, and of the people, only time will tell which direction it takes, and who shapes its future.

▲ Adel ▲ Opinions

If you liked this article and would like to read more in this series, then check them out here:

▲ 1 ▲ The Right Path to Funding Decentralized Organizations

▲ 2 ▲ The Next Evolution in Funding Innovation

▲ 3 ▲ A Philosophy for Blockchain Integrity

▲ 4 ▲ A Collaborative Blockchain Incubator

▲ 5 ▲ Blockchain Diversity & Passion

▲ 6 ▲ Blockchain Startup Expertise

▲ 7 ▲ Blockchain Portfolio Diversification

▲ 8 ▲ Blockchain Incubation to Employment

▲ 9 ▲ From Blockchain Innovation to Execution

▲ 10 ▲ Blockchain Will Transform Retail Lending

▲ 11 ▲ The Next Evolution in Crypto Trading

▲ 12 ▲ Crypto Trading for Everyone

▲ 13 ▲ Architecting Crypto Financial Instruments

▲ 14 ▲ Crypto, For the People, By the People

▲ 15 ▲ The Crypto Uprising

▲ 16 ▲ Blockchain’s Disruption in 2020 & Beyond

About the Authors

Gabriel is a sales and marketing expert with over 25 years in senior positions at Motorola, VeriSign (acquired by Symantec in 2010 for 1.250 billion US$), and SecureWorks (acquired by Dell in 2011 for 612 million US$), and Cognitive Security (acquired by Cisco in 2013 for 25 million US$). He is a blockchain entrepreneur, with strengths in international business strategy. Gabriel has a bachelor’s degree in Engineering Physics from McMaster University in Canada and expert knowledge in blockchain incubation, cloud computing, IT security, and video streaming, and Over the Top Content (OTT). Gabriel also runs his own company, Euro Tech Startups s.r.o., and manages a professional blog at https://dusil.com.

John McLeod

John has spent nearly a decade working for a number of leading public relations firms in London, focusing primarily on PR management in the financial services sector. John’s expertise includes blockchain technology and the evolution of cryptocurrencies in financial services. That’s why he recently founded his own consulting firm, JEA Associates Ltd., which is specifically positioned to communicate the value proposition of this burgeoning technology. John has spent the past year successfully executing campaigns for a digital currency consultancy, decentralized financial solutions, and online payments platforms.

About Adel

adel.io | Blockchain Agnostic Technology Incubator

Adel is a technology incubator for blockchain innovation. Our community collaborates on ideas and uses the AdelWiki™ to collectively create business plans. Members vote on projects and can become profit participates when they are launched. Expertise within the community brings mentoring, learning, and employment opportunities. Successful projects are re-invested for further growth or issued as rewards to members. Adel is blockchain agnostic and will harness the features of any open-ledger platform to showcase its potential. Our mission is to incubate projects that will positively change the world.

▲ Adelphoi | Digital Currency for Adel Ecosystem

Many virtual currencies are a utility or equity tokens on their corresponding blockchains. The Adelphoi (ADL) coin is different, in that it uses a comprehensive process of Idea2Project incubation, to fuel its own ecosystem.

References

[i] https://www.xe.com/currencycharts/?from=XBT&to=USD&view=1Y

[ii] https://coinlib.io/coins

[iii] https://etherscan.io/tokens?p=10

Adel ▲ Opinion ▲ 13 ▲ Architecting Crypto Financial Instruments

By: Gabriel Dusil, co-Founder & General Manager, Adel Ecosystem Ltd., & John McLeod, Founder, JEA Associates Ltd.

Paving the Way for Crypto Financial Instruments.PNG

Since Blockchain technology entered the mainstream consciousness, its potential in traditional financial services and ability to disrupt existing industries has been widely discussed. Areas such as retail, trade, logistics and syndicated loans remain incredibly convoluted with many phases of verification and confirmations before transactions are completed. Blockchain tech can streamline these processes and bring similar value to what the internet did for the information age.

Less understood is blockchain’s potential in cryptocurrency transactions. By definition, their deployment is less evolved when compared to their regulated counterparts. Executing trades, hedging currency swaps, binary options, and posting contracts are more established with fiat services.

Peer-to-peer Decentralized Cryptocurrency eXchange (DCX) allow peers to hedge, speculate or trade different cryptocurrencies based financial instruments such as Spot, Swap, Forward, and Loans. DCX’s are typically based on Ethereum smart contracts, where trading parties agree on all parameters without the need for third-party remediation. Smart contracts aim to provide additional security to traditional contract engagements and reduce transaction costs.

As a crypto trading platform, DCX’s will evolve in step with rapid changes in the blockchain industry; its initial phase will offer a Crypto Spot financial instrument, meaning cryptocurrencies that are traded on-the-spot. The spot exchange rate is the price to exchange one currency for another for immediate delivery, representing the price buyers pay in one cryptocurrency to purchase a second one. The spot exchange rate is for delivery on the earliest value date. The aim is to complete this process in near real-time, revolutionizing the standard settlement offered by traditional banks, which can frustratingly take several days.

Forward contracts are another service DCX’s aim to disrupt. This instrument is when two parties buy or sell an asset at a specified price on a future date. A crypto forward can be used for hedging or speculation; however, its non-standardized nature makes it particularly appropriate for hedging. Unlike standard futures contracts, this one can be customized to any commodity, value and delivery date.

This new and relatively unexplored area of digital currency swaps is an area of crypto finance that DXC’s aims to address. Traditionally, foreign exchange swaps take place when bankers agree on a certain price for the currency to be exchanged. Crypto Swaps allows for digital currencies to be used to fund charges designated in another cryptocurrency, without acquiring foreign exchange risk, allowing companies to manage various digital currencies more efficiently. In addition, these instruments enable traders to sell a contract to option holders that give them the right, but not the obligation, to buy or sell a cryptocurrency at an agreed-upon price, during a certain time period. Crypto smart contracts enable traders to agree on when to buy and sell digital assets, currencies, and holdings when set parameters have been reached.

The impact of blockchain on traditional financial services will be huge. A recent report by Accenture1 cited that eight of the world’s largest banks could potentially save 8 billion US$ on a cost-base of 30 billion US$[i], by improved centralize finance reporting, savings on compliance, operational costs, and business operations. This costs saving doesn’t even take into account improved service times, stronger capital bases and greater accessibility for opportunities in unbanked areas of the world.

Services such as Adel’s iFin (www.adel.io) aims to evolve crypto trading beyond banks that are rooted in legacy supply chains and physical infrastructure. DCX’s have the potential to be the digital interface where anyone, irrespective of their geolocation and experience, can log in, execute trades, and agree on smart contracts that suit their individual needs. By doing this, DCX empower people to build their portfolio, without expensive intermediaries and weighed infrastructure inefficiencies. Crypto has exposed a market gap of users wanting unabated access to an interoperable cross-blockchain platform, enabling an ecosystem of users anywhere in the world to interact and trade, free from brick and mortar intermediaries. Its potential applications are limitless.

[i] Banking on Blockchain, a value analysis for investment banks: https://www.accenture.com/t20170120T074124Z__w__/us-en/_acnmedia/Accenture/Conversion-Assets/DotCom/Documents/Global/PDF/Consulting/Accenture-Banking-on-Blockchain.pdf#zoom=50

▲ Adel ▲ Opinions

If you liked this article and would like to read more in this series, then check them out here:

▲ 1 ▲ The Right Path to Funding Decentralized Organizations

▲ 2 ▲ The Next Evolution in Funding Innovation

▲ 3 ▲ A Philosophy for Blockchain Integrity

▲ 4 ▲ A Collaborative Blockchain Incubator

▲ 5 ▲ Blockchain Diversity & Passion

▲ 6 ▲ Blockchain Startup Expertise

▲ 7 ▲ Blockchain Portfolio Diversification

▲ 8 ▲ Blockchain Incubation to Employment

▲ 9 ▲ From Blockchain Innovation to Execution

▲ 10 ▲ Blockchain Will Transform Retail Lending

▲ 11 ▲ The Next Evolution in Crypto Trading

▲ 12 ▲ Crypto Trading for Everyone

▲ 13 ▲ Architecting Crypto Financial Instruments

▲ 14 ▲ Crypto, For the People, By the People

▲ 15 ▲ The Crypto Uprising

▲ 16 ▲ Blockchain’s Disruption in 2020 & Beyond

About the Authors

Gabriel is a sales and marketing expert with over 25 years in senior positions at Motorola, VeriSign (acquired by Symantec in 2010 for 1.250 billion US$), and SecureWorks (acquired by Dell in 2011 for 612 million US$), and Cognitive Security (acquired by Cisco in 2013 for 25 million US$). He is a blockchain entrepreneur, with strengths in international business strategy. Gabriel has a bachelor’s degree in Engineering Physics from McMaster University in Canada and expert knowledge in blockchain incubation, cloud computing, IT security, and video streaming, and Over the Top Content (OTT). Gabriel also runs his own company, Euro Tech Startups s.r.o., and manages a professional blog at https://dusil.com.

 

John McLeod, Public Relations, Adel

  • John has spent nearly a decade working for a number of leading public relations firms in London, focusing primarily on PR management in the financial services sector. John’s expertise includes blockchain technology and the evolution of cryptocurrencies in financial services. That’s why he recently founded his own consulting firm, JEA Associates Ltd., which is specifically positioned to communicate the value proposition of this burgeoning technology. John has spent the past year successfully executing campaigns for a digital currency consultancy, decentralized financial solutions, and online payments platforms.
  • LinkedInhttps://uk.linkedin.com/in/john-mcleod-a323799

Adel ▲ Opinion ▲ 12 ▲ Crypto Trading for Everyone

Crypto Trading for Everyone.PNG

By: Gabriel Dusil, co-Founder & General Manager, Adel Ecosystem Ltd.
John McLeod, Founder, JEA Associates Ltd.

For centuries, the exchanges of London, New York, Frankfurt, and Tokyo have dominated the buying and selling of equities, commodities and other asset classes. Although technology has improved over the years and people can engage with these markets from the comfort of their own home, the core premise of a centralized exchange has remained the same. The dawn of Blockchain has the potential to radically disrupt the way traditional exchanges operate and the way in which clearing services carry out their functions. The ‘Distributed Ownership’ nature of blockchain could be transformative through the effective use of distributed ledgers.

Crypto Trading for Everyone 2.PNG

Given cryptocurrencies didn’t even exist a decade ago (unlike their traditional fiat exchanges which have operated for more than 200 years), existing exchanges are less evolved and unable to execute in heavy trading conditions, compared to more established equities. Brownouts and service blackouts are a reflection of the immaturity in crypto markets. Many exchanges experience service disruptions because they haven’t created an ideal load balancing architecture or high availability contingencies.

Despite these initial discrepancies, the design of Decentralised Cryptocurrency Exchanges (DCX) could provide insight into the future of equity trading and how people engage with markets and claim ownership of their assets. As it stands today, centralized exchanges are governed by laws and regulations in the countries where they are registered. Participants have to abide by a set of rules that may forsake the control of their assets, use of private data, or even risk devastating security breaches. It’s no coincidence that crypto liberalists avoid centralized platforms when building blockchain infrastructures.

Decentralized platforms, on the other hand, are still at the starting gate, in terms of development maturity. Regardless, they have the foundations to be adaptable and scale well, due to their inherent distributed architecture. Instead of having the oversight of national governments and regulatory bodies, they are governed by communities and can adapt to exceed the resilience of the most advanced centralized platforms. By definition, this technology isn’t hardened from an IT or security perspective, compared to mainstream exchanges. For example, Nasdaq can process one million transactions per second (tps), where most crypto exchanges struggle to process up to 100,000 tps- however, DCXs offer a viable alternative that enables tradable assets without the vulnerabilities of centralized control.

There are those who argue that introducing middle-men into the crypto supply-chain would help to facilitate widespread adoption. But crypto liberalists prefer to eliminate their function, even if they serve to increase ease-of-use, stability, reliability and other features that may not be easily accessible in their absence. Exchange services, for example, can be viewed as a classic middle-man service, directly in conflict with this core ideology. These intermediary services inevitably become the catalyst to global adoption where cryptocurrency trading needs to reach mass-market potential. Furthermore, decentralized exchanges can be accessible to anyone in the world. Challenges, however, remain in the areas of market volatility, regulatory compliance, and security best practices before this can take place.

There are also legal issues, as investors suffer when an exchange is shut down due to non-compliance. The issue here is the single point of failure when centralized services store large sums of wealth and sensitive information. Until relevant legal structures and safeguards are created, mainstream consumers will hesitate to trust the Blockchain as a repository for their money. Then there is a looming threat of protecting personal wealth from hackers, phishing attacks, malware, and zero-day attacks, adding further Fear Uncertainty and Doubt (FUD).

In many ways, the discussion regarding regulatory oversight and protective legal controls cuts to the core of the Blockchain debate. Crypto libertarians dream of a world free from big brother and are willing to accept the risks that come with that. Will there be a balanced equilibrium of regulations that protect consumers in the wild-west of virtual currencies? Will governments allow their central banks to be sidelined as virtual currencies to grow from infancy to maturity?

The relationship between free markets and collective responsibility has been one of the driving economic and political forces in history. The advent of Blockchain technology has contributed yet another dimension. The impact of decentralized services on existing financial systems and regulatory oversight remains to be seen. In the meantime, stakeholders have never had a greater opportunity to take ownership of their financial future, even if that path remains volatile.

▲ Adel ▲ Opinions

If you liked this article and would like to read more in this series, then check them out here:

▲ 1 ▲ The Right Path to Funding Decentralized Organizations

▲ 2 ▲ The Next Evolution in Funding Innovation

▲ 3 ▲ A Philosophy for Blockchain Integrity

▲ 4 ▲ A Collaborative Blockchain Incubator

▲ 5 ▲ Blockchain Diversity & Passion

▲ 6 ▲ Blockchain Startup Expertise

▲ 7 ▲ Blockchain Portfolio Diversification

▲ 8 ▲ Blockchain Incubation to Employment

▲ 9 ▲ From Blockchain Innovation to Execution

▲ 10 ▲ Blockchain Will Transform Retail Lending

▲ 11 ▲ The Next Evolution in Crypto Trading

▲ 12 ▲ Crypto Trading for Everyone

▲ 13 ▲ Architecting Crypto Financial Instruments

▲ 14 ▲ Crypto, For the People, By the People

▲ 15 ▲ The Crypto Uprising

▲ 16 ▲ Blockchain’s Disruption in 2020 & Beyond

About the Authors

Gabriel is a sales and marketing expert with over 25 years in senior positions at Motorola, VeriSign (acquired by Symantec in 2010 for 1.250 billion US$), and SecureWorks (acquired by Dell in 2011 for 612 million US$), and Cognitive Security (acquired by Cisco in 2013 for 25 million US$). He is a blockchain entrepreneur, with strengths in international business strategy. Gabriel has a bachelor’s degree in Engineering Physics from McMaster University in Canada and expert knowledge in blockchain incubation, cloud computing, IT security, and video streaming, and Over the Top Content (OTT). Gabriel also runs his own company, Euro Tech Startups s.r.o., and manages a professional blog at https://dusil.com.

John McLeod, Public Relations, Adel

  • John has spent nearly a decade working for a number of leading public relations firms in London, focusing primarily on PR management in the financial services sector. John’s expertise includes blockchain technology and the evolution of cryptocurrencies in financial services. That’s why he recently founded his own consulting firm, JEA Associates Ltd., which is specifically positioned to communicate the value proposition of this burgeoning technology. John has spent the past year successfully executing campaigns for a digital currency consultancy, decentralized financial solutions, and online payments platforms.
  • LinkedInhttps://uk.linkedin.com/in/john-mcleod-a323799

Adel ▲ Opinion ▲ 11 ▲ The Next Evolution in Crypto Trading

The Next Evolution in Crypto Trading.PNG

By: Gabriel Dusil, co-Founder & General Manager, Adel Ecosystem Ltd.
Jessica Zartler, Director of Marketing & Communications, Adel Ecosystem Ltd.

In the revolution of emerging blockchain technologies, shifting from legacy models and habits to embrace this paradigm shift, occurs in iterations. Arguably, the most significant aspect of blockchain is decentralization, which allows for programmable trust, distributed ownership, and removes the necessity for third-party arbitration.

Money is flooding into cryptocurrency, seen by a market cap increase from 18 billion US$ to more than 600 billion US$ just in 2017. That is a 240 fold increase. With 99 percent of transactions still residing in centralized exchanges (Coinmarketcap.com), the shift to fully decentralized platforms is just on the horizon. Several major catalysts are contributing to the move to decentralized cryptocurrency exchanges, also known as DEXs.

DEXs are superior in security and provide instant account creation. However, in their current state of development, they lack liquidity and their user experience and user interface (UX/UI) are still immature compared to their centralized counterparts. Generally speaking, the more liquid the market, the less volatility, and price manipulation, making DEXs vulnerable at this stage. At the moment, investors are still walking a thin tightrope between friction and fluidity, causing growing pains before mass-market adoption.

The Next Evolution in Crypto Trading 2.PNG

To understand the importance of this shift and what it means, we should understand how centralization affects the investment ecosystem, and explore the development steps needed for DEXs to reach their full potential. Centralized exchanges are platforms that allow investors and traders to buy, sell and exchange cryptocurrency against fiat or other crypto assets. Traders deposit funds and the exchange issues an IOU that is freely tradeable on their platform. When a trader wants to withdraw funds, the IOUs are converted back to currency and returned to the trader.

Centralized exchanges are an on-ramp for people with fiat currency (i.e. dollars, euros, yen or otherwise) to purchase cryptocurrency. While these exchanges allow movement from fiat to crypto, they are a prime target for hackers and have been taken for billions of dollars. Exchanges which follow regulatory guidelines have lengthy registration processes which further hinders investment speed. They also have service lags (brownouts or blackouts), and maybe susceptible to government shutdowns.

DEXs shift investments from a centralized third party to peer-to-peer transactions, through proxy tokens or assets or a multi-signature escrow system, among other solutions being developed. This allows investors to remain, sole custodians of their funds, rather than relinquish their private keys (the passwords used to secure their accounts) to centralized exchanges. DEX benefits include instantaneous account creation, elevated privacy, and decentralized server resilience, ensuring that the infrastructure cannot be shutdown.

If DEXs are the next evolution, why only a one percent market adoption? To begin with, the DEX concept is brand new. As centralized exchanges proceed through their own market maturity lifecycle, decentralized services are only at the starting gate. Because DEXs are blockchain driven, account control resides solely in the hands of the trader. If they lose their private key, or make a mistake when entering a buy or sell order, then there is no recourse – liability resides exclusively with the account holder, and there can be no finger-pointing. In addition:

  • Margin lending and other more advanced trading options are not yet available on DEXs.
  • There is a chicken-egg effect at play, resulting in low liquidity. Since transactions happen on the blockchain itself, there may be issues of scaling pressure if the connected blockchains have not been architected well.
  • Miners can see the blockchain transactions before they are cleared, resulting in front-running risk and market manipulation.
  • Fiat to crypto trading in DEXs will require the cooperation of banks which introduces a new centralized point of failure.

The list of challenges for DEX developers is long, however, they are making quick progress. Developing user-friendly interfaces (UX/UI) continues. Issues like liquidity, scalability and front-running are being solved with new technology models such as relayers, off-chain transactions, hardware-wallets, as well as using a hybrid of centralized and decentralized exchanges to pool liquidity.

Although development is happening at lightning speed, trading performance highlights o a huge gap in the market. While NASDAQ processes one million transactions per second, centralized crypto exchanges average just ten thousand per second. If development is any indicator of velocity, crypto exchanges estimate a ten-fold improvement in the next 12 months.

Progress continues and the momentum is starting to shift in the direction of DEXs, the next evolution of cryptocurrency investment. Those who can iterate the quickest, will unleash full speed liquidity and capitalize on the decentralized nature of blockchains.

▲ Adel ▲ Opinions

If you liked this article and would like to read more in this series, then check them out here:

▲ 1 ▲ The Right Path to Funding Decentralized Organizations

▲ 2 ▲ The Next Evolution in Funding Innovation

▲ 3 ▲ A Philosophy for Blockchain Integrity

▲ 4 ▲ A Collaborative Blockchain Incubator

▲ 5 ▲ Blockchain Diversity & Passion

▲ 6 ▲ Blockchain Startup Expertise

▲ 7 ▲ Blockchain Portfolio Diversification

▲ 8 ▲ Blockchain Incubation to Employment

▲ 9 ▲ From Blockchain Innovation to Execution

▲ 10 ▲ Blockchain Will Transform Retail Lending

▲ 11 ▲ The Next Evolution in Crypto Trading

▲ 12 ▲ Crypto Trading for Everyone

▲ 13 ▲ Architecting Crypto Financial Instruments

▲ 14 ▲ Crypto, For the People, By the People

▲ 15 ▲ The Crypto Uprising

▲ 16 ▲ Blockchain’s Disruption in 2020 & Beyond

About the Authors

Gabriel is a sales and marketing expert with over 25 years in senior positions at Motorola, VeriSign (acquired by Symantec in 2010 for 1.250 billion US$), and SecureWorks (acquired by Dell in 2011 for 612 million US$), and Cognitive Security (acquired by Cisco in 2013 for 25 million US$). He is a blockchain entrepreneur, with strengths in international business strategy. Gabriel has a bachelor’s degree in Engineering Physics from McMaster University in Canada and expert knowledge in blockchain incubation, cloud computing, IT security, and video streaming, and Over the Top Content (OTT). Gabriel also runs his own company, Euro Tech Startups s.r.o., and manages a professional blog at https://dusil.com.

Jessica Zartler, Crypto Marketing

  • Jessica is an award-winning multimedia journalist, content strategy expert and digital marketing consultant with more than ten years of experience. Her work has appeared on several platforms including Forbes, The Associated Press, The Wall Street Journal, MSNBC, Fast Company, and Entrepreneur. Fascinated by the burgeoning blockchain space, she loves to contribute to educational communication about the potential of this new technology for revolution, and the incentivization of fair, inclusive, and environmentally conscious business practices.
  • LinkedInhttps://www.linkedin.com/in/jessicazartler/

Adel ▲ Opinion ▲ 10 ▲ Blockchain Will Transform Retail Lending

Blockchain Will Transform Retail Lending

By: Gabriel Dusil, co-Founder & General Manager, Adel Ecosystem Ltd.
John McLeod, Founder, JEA Associates Ltd.

One of the great surprises of the Blockchain revolution is that banks continue to occupy a near-monopolistic position within financial services, despite their obvious and much-publicized inadequacies. In the UK alone, five high street banks account for 80 percent of SME businesses, and control over 80 percent of domestic bank accounts. Even with the advances made with the digitalization across communications, media and computing industries, their hold remains as tight as ever.

Traditionally this stranglehold has been attributed to high barriers-to-entry, not least regulation and capital ratios for potential lenders. However, in an era where anyone with a car can become a taxi driver and anyone with a spare room can become a guest house, it’s realistic for people with spare cash to become a lender. Since the Renaissance, banking has been carried out on an institution-to-consumer basis or an institution-to-institution basis. Legal and accounting frameworks governing banks have, by and large, remained the same for half a millennia. In fairness, there have been some useful inventions pushing the financial agenda forward – such as online banking, ATMs and credit/debit cards – however, the benefactors of these financial systems reside overwhelmingly in the developed world. With over two billion unbanked in the world, the need for a more equitable and inclusive approach has never been greater.

The use of blockchain technology, particularly smart contracts, has the potential to disrupt the entire retail banking sector, creating a decentralized peer-to-peer network that enables people to borrow and lend in a more streamlined manner. Programmatically settling pre-agreed terms and conditions between two parties was not possible just a few years ago. This is still contingent on account holders willing to take on the same risks as banks, evaluate creditworthiness, pre-arrange written contracts with customized terms and conditions, and at what rate. When these parameters are met then money can be automatically paid, without the need for a human intermediary. This is the basis of smart contracts.

The benefits of blockchain for retail lending encouraged greater competition. Financial monopolies are finally challenged by virtual currencies, and billions of people in developing markets can have access to loans that were previously too expensive or inaccessible.

The current centralized financial industry has enormous disparities in global lending interest rates. Today, the inflation-adjusted interest rate in different countries varies based on available liquidity. In high liquidity markets such as Europe, interest rates are between 0.5 to 5 percent. In lower liquidity markets such as Russia, they are at 12 to 15 percent, 12 percent in India, and as high as 32 percent in Brazil. These dramatic differences demonstrate a clear inequality. Interest rates for microloans in developing countries are between 30 to 40 percent on average, making borrowing impractical. Interest rates for decentralized lending on the blockchain is a streamlined solution to this disparity. Consumers from developing countries can have access to the same lending services as people from highly liquid markets.

These benefits go beyond just fairness and inclusivity. Blockchain radically improves on the problems associated with legacy systems, transaction latency, and transparency. It still takes three working days to approve loans or transfer money between cross-border accounts. In blockchain this transaction is carried out in minutes, using just an internet-connected smartphone.

For the first time in history blockchain service providers (BSP) have the potential to create a fairer and more inclusive lending environment. Dated infrastructures, fragmented governance, and economic borders are often cited as to why financial lending fails on a global scale. A recent report by McKinsey cited that Blockchain technology and inclusion in the digital economy could boost the GDP of all emerging economies by six percent. That translates to $3.7 trillion by 2025. The role of retail banks, in both developed and developing markets, in promoting sustainable and fair services has been questioned. Accessibility, fair terms, and transparency have denied large chunks of the world’s population to banking services that developed countries have enjoyed for decades. Smart contract technology provides the solution to disrupting this elitist source of finance. The potential gains and benefits to global economics and society are on the horizon. The question remains: Will people take advantage of it?

▲ Adel ▲ Opinions

If you liked this article and would like to read more in this series, then check them out here:

▲ 1 ▲ The Right Path to Funding Decentralized Organizations

▲ 2 ▲ The Next Evolution in Funding Innovation

▲ 3 ▲ A Philosophy for Blockchain Integrity

▲ 4 ▲ A Collaborative Blockchain Incubator

▲ 5 ▲ Blockchain Diversity & Passion

▲ 6 ▲ Blockchain Startup Expertise

▲ 7 ▲ Blockchain Portfolio Diversification

▲ 8 ▲ Blockchain Incubation to Employment

▲ 9 ▲ From Blockchain Innovation to Execution

▲ 10 ▲ Blockchain Will Transform Retail Lending

▲ 11 ▲ The Next Evolution in Crypto Trading

▲ 12 ▲ Crypto Trading for Everyone

▲ 13 ▲ Architecting Crypto Financial Instruments

▲ 14 ▲ Crypto, For the People, By the People

▲ 15 ▲ The Crypto Uprising

▲ 16 ▲ Blockchain’s Disruption in 2020 & Beyond

About the Authors

Gabriel is a sales and marketing expert with over 25 years in senior positions at Motorola, VeriSign (acquired by Symantec in 2010 for 1.250 billion US$), and SecureWorks (acquired by Dell in 2011 for 612 million US$), and Cognitive Security (acquired by Cisco in 2013 for 25 million US$). He is a blockchain entrepreneur, with strengths in international business strategy. Gabriel has a bachelor’s degree in Engineering Physics from McMaster University in Canada and expert knowledge in blockchain incubation, cloud computing, IT security, and video streaming, and Over the Top Content (OTT). Gabriel also runs his own company, Euro Tech Startups s.r.o., and manages a professional blog at https://dusil.com.

John McLeod

  • John has spent nearly a decade working for a number of leading public relations firms in London, focusing primarily on PR management in the financial services sector. John’s expertise includes blockchain technology and the evolution of cryptocurrencies in financial services. That’s why he recently founded his own consulting firm, JEA Associates Ltd., which is specifically positioned to communicate the value proposition of this burgeoning technology. John has spent the past year successfully executing campaigns for a digital currency consultancy, decentralized financial solutions, and online payments platforms.
  • LinkedInhttps://uk.linkedin.com/in/john-mcleod-a323799

Gabriel Dusil • Information Technology • 3 • Oak Case Mod™

16.Jul.3 - Prague · Oak Case Mod™ (office desk, 2, smaller)

 20 minutes 5 seconds

• Creativity Inspiring Technology

  • This corporate server is the main workstation for Euro Tech Startups s.r.o. It’s mainly used to render client projects for 3D Motion Graphics. All data is completely mirrored, to ensure high -availability, and uses the motherboard’s RAID controller for improved data throughput performance. This computer is also used in photo restoration services. Restored photos are saved in uncompressed TIFF, and the process is recorded with video capture software.

• Build

  • The first day was focused mainly on preparing the workspace. Then I cut the side panels and fill the router grooves from a previous HiFi project. Next was routing grooves (6mm) needed for the rails that would hold the 20x 1TB hard drives.
  • The second day focused on drilling dowel holes, sanding the case, beveling the edges, and oiling the case. A Dremel was used to carve my signature into the front panel.
  • The third day was spent mounting the components, tie wrapping the cables, and general fixes. For example, I had mistakenly mounted the power supply upside down. So that needed to be fixed. Then the PC was booted for the first time.

• Snags

  • The first attempt at booting the case ran into a macro panic attack. As I turned on the power there was a spark and a zap from the motherboard! A seminal WTF moment for an IT geek! Dread set-in as a burning plastic filled the air, and I watched as a hint of smoke left my motherboard. Sweat ran down, “WTF did I do wrong?!” I wasn’t sure what had burnt-out, but I had seen the general location of the spark around the PCI-e slots. In any case, the PC still booted successfully. But over a series of future boots the PC would POST, but it wouldn’t make it past the Windows 10 spinning dots in the OS boot process. I tried countless restore points as well as switching my operating system SSD with my backup. Nothing worked. After six hours of no success I was exhausted and decided to call it a night.
  • As many PC geeks know too well – we hate going to bed when our PC’s aren’t working. But I thought maybe some rest may clear my mind and give me some new ideas. That night I actually dreamt of a few solutions; strip the whole PC to it’s bare components; buy a new video card; or start all over again and buy a new motherboard, CPU and RAM. That last option I was hoping to avoid since it meant scrapping a perfectly good Intel 4770 processor and 32GB of Corsair RAM, unless I could source a similar Z87 motherboard.
  • As I woke the next day I had the sinking realization of unfinished business with my PC broken. Rather than going through the arduous effort of striping the whole computer, I decided to start with the easiest step: the video card. The Asus Z87 Deluxe has built in video, so I removed the nVidia card and booted the machine using it’s onboard video. Success -Wow! I then closely examined the PCI-e 90 degree 16x 2U Riser and finally saw the culprit – a burnt capacitor!  In the end a $3 component was my problem. The boot process was getting stuck because it couldn’t communicate with the video card successfully, when it was trying to draw more data as it entered a higher graphics state.

16.May.11 - Prague · PC Case Oak Mod (90° Graphics riser card, 5, smaller)

 

• Inventory

  • 1x Motherboard • Asus Z87 Deluxe
  • 2x RAM 8GB Corsair Vengeance
  • 2x RAM 8GB Corsair Dominator
  • 1x CPU Intel i7-4770K processor
  • 1x CPU closed-loop water cooler Corsair Cooling Hydro Series H100i GTX
  • 1x Graphics car•  Gigabyte Windforce nVidia GTX770
  • 1x PCI-x 16x Riser 90⁰ 2U (to turn the graphics card 90° degrees, so that it is oriented flat against the case)
  • 1x Power Supply • Corsair HX1000i
  • 4x SATA controllers HighPoint Rocket 620
  • 20x Hard Drive fans Scythe Ita Kaze
  • 1x Hard Drive Samsung 1TB 850 Evo SSD (for the operating system)
  • 1x Hard Drive Western Digital Green WD60EZRX, 6TB, 64MB Cache SATA 6.0Gb/s, 3.5″, 7200 RPM (for 3D motion graphics)
  • 19x Hard Drive Seagate 1TB, 3.5″ Internal SATA Hard Drive, 6.0Gb/s, 64MB Cache, 7200 RPM. These are refurbished drives to keep the price low and to test the overall concept of the multi-drive design goal (used for client projects, mirrored backups, and personal files)
  • 2x Wood Panels 50cm x 50cm x 4cm Oak
  • 5x Wood Brackets 42mm diameter x 18cm Indonesian Tamarind
  • 160x brass spacers 6mm diameter x 10mm (for spacing the hard drives between the wooden panels)
  • 80x brass washers 15mm diameter (between the brass spacers)

Oak Case Mod™

If you missed the first part of this project, you can find the link here:

If you like this post, please leave a comment below.

Gabriel Dusil • Information Technology • 2 • Oak Case Mod™

16.May.7 - Prague · Oak Case Mod™ (2, smaller)

 

• Design • Form

• For years I struggled with integrating traditional PC cases. I never had enough room at the back to plug my devices. Under my desk the tower was cramped, and every time I needed to service a component my heart sank, contemplating going back there. I usually couldn’t move the PC because of the abundance of cables prevented any rotating or tilting. I hated plugging in SATA drives or USB devices when I couldn’t see the port and I needed to guess it’s orientation.

• Design • Function

• A compact design was important. In consumer and industrial PC cases it’s rare to find a case that holds more than 8 hard drives. This case needed to hold 20 hard drives within the confines of a standard PC tower. Also, the case would only accommodate modern components. So no need for a DVD or BluRay drive.

• No screws were used in the core construction of the Oak Case Mod™. The main structural dowels are hidden from view, and the only hole necessary is for routing cables. I was inspired by the design principles of wood craftsmen that built their art such that the structure holds together by the design itself. In this way it could easily be taken apart without an tools.

• All ports needed to be easily accessible, including USB, SATA, Ethernet, audio cables, power, and internal cabling, hard drives, and motherboard. For this reason, the entire motherboard orientation is rotated 180⁰ from traditional case designs, so that all ports face the front.

• Design • Quiet

• The case design needed to be silent and cool.  With a measured room temperature of 22°C all component temperatures are continually measured using Corsair Link:

  1. Hard drive •  This open concept allows all components to ‘breath’. Each hard drive has their own fan – a Scythe Ita Kaze, spinning at 1,000rpm (rated at 14.5 dBA). Temperatures range between 30°C – 44°C. 
  2. Graphics Processor Unit (GPU) • a Gigabyte Windforce GTX 770 video card is used, with fans spinning at 700 rpm to 800 rpm and maintaining a GPU temperature of 28°C – 40°C. During Cinema 4D rendering, the GPU fan spins at 1,200rpm to 1,400rpm with temperatures between 50°C – 52°C.
  3. Power supply • a Corsair HX1000i is the PSU, and it’s completely silent. The fan does not spin under standard working conditions,. Nor does it spin when the CPU is running at 100% utilization, when encoding 3D motion graphics or videos.
  4. Motherboard • Temperatures range between 26°C – 40°C.  Under 100% load the motherboard ranges between 28°C – 60°C
  5. CPU cooling • This design accommodates a double length 280mm long CPU closed-loop water cooling radiator, ensuring that CPU cooling is maximized (without venturing into custom water-cooling territory).  The Corsair Cooling Hydro Series H100i GTX is a CPU water cooler with its fans spinning between 1,000rpm and 1,300rpm. They maintain a CPU temperature between 36°C – 40°C (between all 4 cores) under normal working conditions. Under 100% load, CPU load temperatures range between  58°C and 64°C with the Hydro fan speeds from 1,100rpm to 2,000rpm.

• Design • Beautiful

• The reason for choosing Oak as a base material was inspired by my new company Euro Tech Startups where our motto is Creatively Inspiring Technology. I wanted to combine beauty and technological excellence in this Oak Case Mod™. The case also aesthetically matches my office desk, built out of 4cm thick solid walnut, and follows the same design principles. It’s all about merging art and technology.

Oak Case Mod™

If you missed the first part of this project, you can find the link here:

If you like this post, please leave a comment below.

Gabriel Dusil • Information Technology • 1 • Oak Case Mod™

16.May.7 - Prague · Oak Case Mod™ (1, smaller)

 

 1 minute 3 seconds

• Introduction

  • I’ve been building custom PC’s for over twenty years. This iteration began back in 2003 as a Home Theatre PC (HTPC) project, and has evolved significantly. It’s now my work computer, home PC, and entertainment center. Over the years all components have been upgraded again and again. Last year I decided to do away with the computer case completely, and layout all components in an open concept. It was mainly to help with accessibility to all components, and to keep them as cool as possible. I found that the constraints of a standard PC tower tended to act as a convection oven, regardless of how well I tweaked the fans. In an open concept the hard drives and motherboard had easy access to the natural flow of ambient air.
  • But it quickly turned into a mess. Cables were everywhere and it was embarrassing to look at. Friends and family would visit and basically ask, “What is that monstrosity?” So I began to look around the Internet for a suitable PC case. One approach was an industrial or rack mount solution. But that added new complications in space, noise and aesthetics. There was nothing practical that accommodated a design that supported at least 20 hard drives – that was my gating factor. So I decided to build one instead. I wanted to demonstrate how far a standard PC and motherboard could go – The ability to accommodate an enterprise level storage system in the size of a desktop tower. Even though I use 1TB hard drives, it was important in this experiment to prove that storage scalability can be built at a consumer level, and still look pretty.

• Production

  • This is the first part in a pair of blog posts that outline my design goals, and the entire process leading to the final product. I hope it inspires other builders with new and innovative designs. Enjoy!
  • In this motion graphic we animated the end-to-end production of the Oak Case Mod™. It demonstrates how motion graphics can not only be used for precision photo realistic 3D modelling, but all elements of the creative process can also be animated in a wicked video.

• Contact Us

  • Do you want a 3D model of your new idea to test your design and validate your specifications?
  • Are you interested in a sensational 3D video to showcase your products?
  • Would you like to use 3D motion graphics to animate the unique design of your product?

If you are interested in creating your own 3D product animation, contact us today for a quote: g@eurostartups.tech.

If you like this post, please leave a comment below.

Oak Case Mod™

If you missed the first part of this project, you can find the link here:

If you like this post, please leave a comment below.

• Additional Projects

Here are quick links to some of our other videos and motion graphics projects: