Venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz — also known as a16z — has started releasing an online version of “Crypto Startup School,” its seven-week education course for industry entrepreneurs. Two lectures from week one were published on May 13 via TechCrunch, while the rest of the material will eventually become available on the investment giant’s website.
Titled “Crypto Networks and Why They Matter,” the first talk was held by a16z general partner Chris Dixon, who argues that blockchains can become the next major computing platform after smartphones and the web, unlocking many possibilities to entrepreneurs and developers worldwide. The second presentation is delivered by Dan Boneh, a professor in applied cryptography and computer security at Stanford University. Bohen discussed the cryptographic origins of blockchains and its basic features like private keys, mining, and zero-knowledge proofs.
The remaining 12 lectures, which are yet to be published, were held by Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong, angel investor Balaji Srinivasan and the United States Office of the Comptroller of the Currency executive Brian Brooks, among others. “Crypto Startup School” took place from late February to mid-April in Menlo Park, California. The boot camp was attended by 45 students from the U.S. and overseas, who were selected from “among thousands of applicants”, according to the company.
Andreessen Horowitz is one of the key mainstream venture capital firms to operate in the space, as it has invested in major projects including Libra, Ripple, and Coinbase. There might be more crypto-related investments on the way from a16z, given that the company has recently raised $515 million for its second crypto-focused fund, surpassing the initial goal by $65 million.
3 Big Blockchain Firms Working Together On A DeFi Product That Pays Passive Income
In a special announcement made at the Unitize conference on July 6, Cosmos, Polkadot, and Terra revealed a new DeFi savings product called Anchor that aims to offer dependable interest rates on stablecoins deposits. The companies involved in the creation of Anchor plan to launch it across their respective blockchains at the end of Q3 this year and scale across to other PoS blockchains in the future. Do Kwon, founder and CEO of Terra, explained in a prepared statement:
“While DeFi staples such as Maker and Compound have been revolutionary in creating fully decentralized crypto money markets, the volatility of their interest rates makes them unsuitable to be used as a household savings product. DeFi mass adoption needs the creation of a fully decentralized savings account that offers dependable APR.”
Anchor’s smart contracts receive stablecoin deposits and use a portion of them to acquire staking positions on compatible Proof of Stake blockchains. Users will receive their passive income from these staking rewards. The initial governance for this platform will come from the Interchain Asset Association (IAA), a newly formed organization that sees Zaki Manian of Cosmos, Jack Platts of the Web3 Foundation, and Do Kwon of Terraform Labs collectively steering the ship.
Telegram Is Set To Shut Down The TON Testnet By August 2020
Although Telegram has terminated its blockchain project, Telegram Open Network (TON), in May 2020, the TON test net has been apparently running for almost one year. In a July 6 update, the official TON development group on Telegram announced that it would be discontinuing its support of the test network for TON. Remaining TON validators will be turned off by August 1. In the post, the TON official recommended network participants save all their relevant data and stop their testing processes. Despite the testnet being set to shut down less than a month from now, network participants will still be able to continue their experimentation after the testnet is terminated. In order to do that, users can install their own testnet validators, described in greater detail in three different how-to documents containing guidelines for the Full Node, the Validator, and Test Grams.
Telegram launched the TON testnet for explorer and node software on Sept. 6, 2019. In anticipation of its scheduled Oct. 31 launch last year, the company released an alpha version of an iOS wallet to work with its native token, the Gram. But Telegram’s TON plans were never fully realized, as the United States Securities and Exchange Commission suddenly deemed Telegram’s $1.7 billion ICO illegal in mid-October. After a long-running legal battle with U.S. regulators, Telegram agreed to shut down its TON project, as well as return $1.2 billion to investors in line with a court-approved final settlement. As officially announced by Telegram CEO Pavel Durov, the firm had already reimbursed more than $1.2 billion by June 25.
Brock Pierce Enters The 2020 US Presidential Race
Brock Pierce, entrepreneur, crypto venture capitalist, and child star, has announced his USA Presidential run on Twitter July 5. His tweet stated: “
“I, Brock Pierce, am running for President of the United States of America.”
Pierce’s campaign site states that he is a pioneer digital currency and has raised more than $5 billion for the companies he has founded. Pierce is the Chairman of the Bitcoin Foundation and co-founder of EOS Alliance, Block.one, Blockchain Capital, Tether, and Mastercoin (first ICO). His website, sparse on details, does not say if he is seeking a nomination in a political party or if he is running as an Independent.