Discover the inner workings and origins of Celestia Airdrop’s data availability network, along with insights into the newly introduced TIA tokens in this week’s edition of The Protocol newsletter. We also shift our focus to Starknet’s STRK tokens, which, although not yet tradable, are already being distributed to early contributors.
For the editor presiding over a newsletter dedicated to blockchain technology, it’s truly advantageous when an intelligently elucidating perspective accompanies a token airdrop that garners considerable attention from the crypto enthusiasts. This constitutes the essence of our featured article, which centers on the blockchain endeavor known as Celestia.
This week, Celestia initiated a token airdrop, distributing its novel TIA tokens to early contributors and crypto enthusiasts, effectively catapulting its market capitalization to an impressive sum exceeding $300 million virtually overnight. The genesis of this narrative traces back to a “data availability” network initially conceived in a research paper by a diligent Ph.D. candidate at University College London. Presently, this project asserts that it has catalyzed a fresh “modular era” within the realm of blockchain development, particularly within the expansive domain of Ethereum.
We are also delving into:
- The allocation of STRK tokens by the layer-2 project Starknet to early community members, even before these tokens commence trading.
- Observing the trustees of Sam Bankman-Fried’s beleaguered FTX exchange as they orchestrate token transfers across various blockchains, ostensibly aimed at optimizing their assets’ value.
- The significant milestone achieved by Arbitrum, marking the launch of its “Orbit” program, tailored to facilitate the establishment of new layer-3 networks.
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In the realm of network updates, one may wonder, “When will Starknet make its grand entrance?” This week, Celestia, the data-availability network, graced us with the distribution of its TIA tokens, a gesture that received commendation from none other than Starknet’s official account. Starknet, a prominent Ethereum layer-2 network, promptly acknowledged the gesture. In response, a discerning member of the X community retorted wittily, suggesting that it’s now Starknet’s turn to step into the limelight.
This sardonic comment alluded to the impending launch of STRK tokens by Starknet, tokens that have been minted and are soon to be conferred upon early contributors of the project. However, it’s worth noting that these tokens will remain inaccessible for trading until at least April.
Starknet disclosed its rationale back in July 2022, emphasizing the necessity of a token to govern and sustain the ecosystem, set its values and strategic direction, and guide its development. Fast forward to November of the same year, and the STRK tokens made their debut on the Ethereum main network.
Recent news reports a significant development: the Starknet Foundation allocated approximately 50 million STRK tokens to a novel initiative known as the Early Community Member Program (ECMP). These tokens originate from the foundation’s initial endowment, accounting for 50.1% of the original supply of 10 billion STRK.
This equates to a substantial reserve of approximately 5 billion STRK. Given that these tokens remain untradeable for the time being, their current valuation remains uncertain, with any potential returns likely a considerable time in the future. Nevertheless, these awards could play a pivotal role in bolstering Starknet’s growth and maintaining its community, particularly during the ongoing “crypto winter,” where resources are at a premium.
This comes as rival projects, including Arbitrum, the most significant layer-2 blockchain built on the Ethereum network, forge ahead with their incentive programs. Notably, Starknet officials have yet to confirm any forthcoming airdrops.
Turning our attention to the FTX saga, we find ourselves in an age where, thanks to blockchain technology, observers can witness in real-time the intricate dance of lawyers and financiers striving to maximize the assets of a company entangled in bankruptcy proceedings.
The estate of Sam Bankman-Fried’s beleaguered crypto exchange, FTX, has been actively repositioning its holdings, moving assets valued at over $3.4 billion on various blockchains, following court approval in September. In the past 24 hours, a significant sum exceeding $13 million in diverse crypto tokens has migrated to Binance and Coinbase from wallets affiliated with FTX and its trading entity, Alameda, as reported by the analytical firm Spotonchain. Among the tokens on the move, we find (DYDX), (AAVE), and Axie Infinity (AXS).
The previous week witnessed cold wallets associated with FTX orchestrating the transfer of over $19 million in various tokens to cryptocurrency exchange addresses, blockchain data has revealed, encompassing assets like Ethereum’s ETH and Solana’s SOL. It’s worth noting that last year, CoinDesk provided exclusive coverage of the cryptocurrency lender Celsius’s on-chain activities as it diligently repaid substantial borrowings on DeFi platforms such as Aave to reclaim its collateral.
On October 25, a group of hackers successfully extracted a substantial sum of approximately $4.4 million worth of cryptocurrency from a minimum of 25 LastPass users, as reported by blockchain analyst ZachXBT.
Meanwhile, Circle has opted to restrict the creation of stablecoins for retail users, a move that brings them closer to the practices adopted by Tether in the cryptocurrency space.
Tether, on the other hand, has disclosed an excess reserve amounting to $3.2 billion, although they are still lagging in the process of reducing their secured loans.
The ongoing challenges within the Terra ecosystem have led to co-founder Daniel Shin attributing the issues to the management approach of Do Kwon, a topic explored by CryptoSlate.
According to Goldman Sachs, Ethereum’s Dencun upgrade represents a significant step toward establishing a more scalable settlement layer, offering a promising path for the platform’s future growth.
As the 15th anniversary of the Bitcoin white paper approaches, Wall Street looms as a potential contender to absorb its one-time rival, signaling a significant shift in the cryptocurrency landscape, as observed by CoinDesk’s Nick Baker.
In the realm of cryptocurrency’s ‘Autonomous Worlds’ or AW, creators assume the role of architects, while users are deemed stakeholders, a concept vividly explored by CoinDesk’s Daniel Kuhn.
Welcome to Protocol Village, where we shed light on the latest advancements and developments in the world of blockchain technology. Here are the highlights:
- The Arbitrum Foundation has made a noteworthy announcement regarding the integration of new layer-3 networks established through the “Orbit” program with the main Arbitrum network. This move signifies a significant step toward enhancing the capabilities of the Arbitrum ecosystem.
- DYdX, the crypto derivatives trading platform, has officially unveiled its “v4” standalone blockchain, developed using Cosmos technology. This marks a shift from its previous status as a layer-2 network on Ethereum. Notably, DYdX has also introduced a one-way bridge, enabling users to seamlessly transfer their DYDX tokens to the new blockchain.
- Cubist, under the leadership of CEO Riad Wahby, who is also an assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering at Carnegie Mellon University, has introduced a groundbreaking solution named CubeSigner. This “wallet-as-a-service” product aims to address the challenge of providing convenient access to account keys while ensuring their utmost security.
- At Breakpoint 2023, Dan Albert, the executive director of the Solana Foundation, unveiled the long-awaited validator client known as “Firedancer,” which is now live on the testnet. Firedancer’s introduction is a pivotal moment for the Solana network, as it is expected to bolster validator diversity, a crucial element for long-term resilience and decentralization. This client is fully compatible with existing Solana validators and protocols and has been developed by a team at Jump Trading Group, a prominent participant in the Solana ecosystem, under the leadership of Kevin Bowers.
- IoTeX, a blockchain platform compatible with Ethereum’s Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) standard, has disclosed its integration with Solana. This integration opens up new possibilities for real-time analytics on Solana-connected hardware devices. Notably, IoTeX’s collaboration with Solana allows for the incorporation of verifiable off-chain data from IoT-connected projects, including Helium, Render, and Hivemapper, into its transparent data analytics platform. This development holds promise for the convergence of blockchain and the Internet of Things (IoT) in the world of decentralized data analytics.
Welcome to the Money Center, your source for the latest financial news and developments. Here’s what’s happening in the world of finance:
- Animoca Brands is in the process of securing a substantial $50 million investment from Saudi Arabia’s NEOM. This investment is poised to fuel the growth and expansion of the company in the digital entertainment and blockchain space.
- Rise In, a prominent educational platform that specializes in transitioning Web2 developers into the world of Web3, has expanded its extensive talent community of over 200,000 members by acquiring U.S.-based BlockBeam. This strategic move has added approximately 1,000 Web3 developers to their roster.
- Crypto venture funds Variant and 1kx are leading a significant $6 million funding round for Modulus, a startup that combines Zero-Knowledge (ZK) technology with Artificial Intelligence (AI). This funding is expected to propel Modulus in its mission to innovate within the intersection of ZK and AI.
Deals and Grants:
- Solana Labs has officially launched the Solana Incubator program. This program offers a wide range of resources, including hands-on engineering support, go-to-market assistance, and fundraising support provided by Solana Labs. This initiative aims to nurture and support promising projects within the Solana ecosystem.
- Google Cloud has introduced the Solana network dataset on BigQuery, Google’s data warehouse. This partnership is set to enhance data analysis and insights within the Solana network, further facilitating research and development in the blockchain space.
- The Interchain Foundation, responsible for overseeing development in the Cosmos blockchain ecosystem, has announced the development of the IBC (Inter-Blockchain Communication) light client on Avalanche. This marks a significant step toward seamless interoperability between Avalanche and over 100 other IBC-enabled blockchain chains. This collaboration is a result of the joint efforts of StrangeLove, the Distributed Development Team of the Interchain Foundation, and Landslide, an Avalanche subnet.
Data and Tokens:
- Frax Finance, a decentralized cross-chain protocol, faced a domain hijacking incident early Wednesday. However, the project’s team, with assistance from their domain registrar, successfully regained control of their domain, ensuring the project’s stability and security.
- Pepecoin has experienced a remarkable surge, doubling its market capitalization to $500 million. This surge comes amid the ongoing fascination with meme coins and coincided with a period when Bitcoin’s ETF-related excitement was making headlines.
- Floki, initially known as a meme coin, is now striving to rebrand itself as a serious contender in the world of Decentralized Finance (DeFi). The project aims to explore the burgeoning space of tokenizing “real-world assets” (RWAs), an area often seen as a trillion-dollar opportunity. This shift in focus underscores the dynamic nature of the crypto space and its evolving possibilities.