Recap: CoinGeek Zurich Conference – Day 2

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By Jamie McKane Published: July 7, 2021
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CoinGeek’s Zurich Conference 2021 took place from June 8-10, 2021 and featured a variety of presentations from speakers involved with blockchain technology and the Bitcoin SV ecosystem.

Each of the three days offered an exciting line-up of presentations and discussions. The conference looks at the latest developments within the Bitcoin SV space and new use cases for blockchain technology.

The second day of CoinGeek Zurich 2021 featured presentations across a wide range of topics, from building the Tuvalu National Digital Ledger and blockchain legislation to NFTs and eSports.

World-class speakers took the stage throughout the day, including Bitcoin Association founding president Jimmy Nguyen, Centbee co-founder Lorien Gamaroff, European Commission Digital Innovation and Blockchain head of unit Pēteris Zilgalvis, Bitcoin SV infrastructure team lead Steve Shadders, FYX CEO Adam Kling and many more.

The event played host to a limited number of attendees at its physical venue in Zurich, Switzerland and was broadcasted to thousands of viewers around the world.

If you missed the second day of CoinGeek Zurich 2021, we have summarised the highlights of the day’s sessions. You can watch the full live stream of day two of the CoinGeek Zurich Conference here.

Recap: CoinGeek Zurich Conference – Day 2

Panel discussion: Tuvalu National Digital Ledger on BSV

The first session of the day was a panel discussion on the Tuvaluan National Digital Ledger project, which was chaired by Bitcoin Association founding president Jimmy Nguyen and comprised the following panellists:

  • Simon Kofe – Tuvalu Minister for Justice, Communication and Foreign Affairs
  • Brendan Lee – founder, Elas Digital
  • Simit Naik – director of commercial and strategy, Chain
  • George Siosi Samuels – founder, Honā

The discussion explored the background and early phases of the Tuvalu National Digital Ledger initiative – a project that aims to make the island nation of Tuvalu a digital-first country through the deployment of a BSV-based digital ledger to meet the island’s digital currency and identity needs.

George Siosi Samuels explained how he first published a plan to leverage the country’s ‘.tv’ top-level domain to fund its adoption of cutting-edge technologies and how this was noticed and picked up by Minister Kofe.

Simit Naik and Brendan Lee spoke about the possibilities of deploying this national digital ledger and how it could be used to make government services more efficient in addition to creating a digital payments framework for citizens.

Minister Kofe said the selection of the BSV blockchain for the deployment of this ledger was due to the network’s security and scalability – crucial traits for government services.

‘We are particularly interested in the security and scalability of the BSV blockchain. After doing much reading and research, I really see the capabilities of this technology to transform Tuvalu,’ Kofe said.

Watch this session in full.

Panel discussion: eGovernment on blockchain

Up next, Nguyen remained on stage to moderate a panel discussion on eGovernment and public sector services built on the BSV blockchain. The panellists were as follows:

  • Muhammad Salman Anjum – Chief Mate, InvoiceMate and Head of BSV Hub for Middle East & South Asia
  • Geoffrey Weli-Wosu – co-founder and CEO, Domineum Blockchain Solutions
  • Ahmed Yousif – Digital transformation lead and strategic head at Holy Makkah Municipality, Saudi Arabia

The discussion focused on the use of public blockchains as a platform for government services and whether this was an effective use of the technology.

All panellists agreed that a public blockchain had significant utility in building public trust through transparency, with Muhammad Salman Anjum stating that this sector was one of the most important in the blockchain space.

‘I think the one entity that requires blockchain the most is the government because they need to gain the trust of the citizens, and blockchain is that enabler for them,’ he said. BSV is the prime candidate for this application due to its fast transactions, low costs and stable protocol, he added.

The consensus on the topic was that while blockchain’s relative immaturity and nascent adoption made governments inherently wary due to their typically risk-averse nature, the technology itself, particularly that of BSV, is ideally suited to address the major challenges of traditional government structures.

Ahmed and Salman also provided more detail on a proof-of-concept blockchain programme conducted in the Holy Makkah Municipality in Saudi Arabia.

Watch this session in full.

Panel discussion: Blockchain and the future of Africa

Following the panel on eGovernment and blockchain, Nguyen chaired a discussion on blockchain and its potential applications for countries in Africa, sharing the stage with the following experts:

  • Lorien Gamaroff – co-founder and CEO, Centbee
  • Mohammed Ibrahim Jega – co-founder, Domineum Blockchain Solutions
  • Dr Catherine Lephoto – independent consultant and technical advisor, SESIU

Lorien Gamaroff began the discussion by providing background on digital payments across the continent, explaining the challenges Centbee has had to overcome to build a compliant and useable platform that facilitates accessible digital currency transactions.

‘This is a great opportunity for Africa to provide an accessible, easy-to-use, and regulatory-compliant payment system using mobile phones,’ Gamaroff said.

Mohammed Ibrahim Jega spoke about the unique problems faced by African countries when it comes to managing data securely and efficiently, explaining how blockchain technology and Domineum can help enterprises and governments to track, trace and monitor everything from products in a supply chain to digital payments.

Dr Catherine Lephoto provided excellent insight into the Lesotho healthcare system, the dependency of its economic state on that of South Africa’s and the challenges faced by the country during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Due to its inextricable link with South Africa and the large volume of cross-border travel with the country, Lesotho faced the significant challenge of needing to monitor COVID-19 vaccine status and distribution without spending a significant amount of money. Dr Lephoto explained that by using VXpass on the BSV blockchain, Lesotho is now able to securely monitor the distribution of its COVID-19 vaccine without the need for cumbersome paper passes and other unnecessary hindrances.

Watch this session in full.

Panel discussion: Blockchain law and policy

The next panel discussion focussed on blockchain law and policy, and featured the following speakers:

  • Tina Balzli – attorney-at-law and legal, fintech & blockchain expert
  • Dr Thomas Dünser – Director of the Office for Financial Centre, Innovation (SFI) Government of Liechtenstein,
  • Nino Landerer – head of capital markets & infrastructure and State Secretariat, International Finance SIF
  • Pēteris Zilgalvis, J.D. – head of unit, Digital Innovation and Blockchain DG CONNECT, European Commission

The moderator for this discussion was Bitcoin Association legal counsel and public policy manager Marcin Zarakowski, who kicked off the discussion by asking panellists about the current policy environment surrounding blockchain and cryptocurrency in both Switzerland and across the world.

A major part of the debate focused on the classification of blockchain-based tokens and shares as securities, as well as the different regulations that govern them all around the world. The experts provided insight into Switzerland’s accommodating and innovation-friendly legislation regarding blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies.

‘What Switzerland is doing in the field of blockchain is embedded in a more holistic policy framework which is centred around innovation, interconnectedness, and sustainability,’ Nino Landerer said.

Watch this session in full.

Panel discussion: Tokenising assets on BSV

Southeast Asia Ella Qiang Bitcoin Association

Up next, Bitcoin Association regional manager for Southeast Asia Ella Qiang moderated a panel discussion on the tokenisation of assets on Bitcoin SV, featuring the following panellists:

  • Eli Afram – co-founder, Amleh
  • James Belding – co-founder and CEO, Tokenized
  • Jack Liu – founder, RelayX

James Belding began the conversation with an explanation of Tokenized’s efforts in creating tools to build smart contracts on BSV, a functionality enabled by the blockchain’s restoration of Bitcoin Script and its ability to write data to the blockchain through the OP_RETURN opcode.

‘We recently released the backbone of our smart contracting platform as a service, which is really the API,’ Belding explained.

‘That API is a fully-featured smart contracting toolset that allows for the transfer of assets, the issuance and management of all kinds of tokens, the governance of those tokens, as well as a lot of compliance tools.’

Afram and Liu also gave updates on the status of their BSV-based token platforms, providing insight into the development of smart contracts and the tokenisation of new digital assets and existing assets like gold on the BSV blockchain.

Panellists also discussed how token designs can fit into existing legal frameworks and the challenge of changing mainstream perspectives and understandings of tokens, which Belding categorised as simple instruments that comprise smart contracts running on the blockchain.

The varied utility of BSV tokens were also discussed, including everything from governance of financial records to enabling interaction with decentralised organisations and services.

Watch this session in full.

Panel discussion: NFTs on BSV

Charles Miller and Michael Hudson

The next session was a panel discussion on the creation and functionality of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) on BSV, which was chaired by CoinGeek writer, producer and podcast host Charles Miller. The panellists participating in the discussion were as follows:

  • Roy Bernhard – Chief Visionary, Fabriik and The Bayesian Group
  • Michael Hudson – founder and CEO, Bitstocks
  • Adam Kling – CEO, FYX Gaming

Panellists began by explaining the involvement of their own businesses with NFTs, which ranged from the tokenisation of video game assets to the announcement from Bitstocks of their partnership with Vaionex to launch a Gravity-branded NFT exchange.

Roy Bernhard also described the utility of NFTs in creating a varied and lively market of asset exchange on the BSV blockchain.

‘A market is only as good as the quality and variety of its assets – that is what truly creates sustainable liquidity. We launched our tokenisation platform and the natural extension of that is the ability to create NFTs. We have seen an explosion of minting and trading, with over 2,500 tokens already minted and traded,’ Bernhard said.

The experts also broke down the definition of NFTs and their various uses in everything from the tokenisation of real artwork to the licensing of collectables which represent everything from in-game assets to documentation and coupons.

Watch this session in full.

Panel discussion: Casual games and eSports on BSV

CoinGeek lead gaming industry reporter Becky Liggero Fontana took the stage next to moderate a discussion on casual games and eSports on Bitcoin SV, with the following expert panellists:

  • John Brackens – CTO, Esports Entertainment Group
  • Adam Kling – CEO, FYX Gaming
  • Joe De Pinto – co-founder and CMO, Haste
  • Gu Lu – co-founder, Bitcell Technology

The discussion began with Joe De Pinto explaining how microtransactions are implemented in games built on the BSV blockchain, enabled by the network’s low transaction fees and high data throughput. Adam Kling also presented a video of CryptoFights, a game built by FYX where characters, actions and items are tokenised on Bitcoin SV.

Gu Lu broke down Bitcell’s integration of BSV with casual gaming and how this works in practice, before John Brackens spoke about how his business was exploring various implementations of BSV. ‘We have a bunch of ideas where we feel [BSV] could provide an extra level of transparency to our users,’ Brackens said.

The timestamping capabilities and transparency of BSV were a major focus of the conversation, with speakers demonstrating how online gaming becomes far more honest and auditable when actions are recorded as transactions on the public ledger. Panellists also discussed how other platforms like Ethereum are not suitable for building on at the moment due to its high transaction fees and limited transaction processing capabilities, with BSV being the best option for the near-term implementation of the integration they need.

Watch this session in full.

Panel discussion: iGaming on BSV

The next session focused on a closely related topic, that of casinos and iGaming built on blockchain technology. This panel discussion was moderated by Premier Consulting director Nick Hill, who spoke with the following industry experts:

  • Matthew Gardiner – advisory board member, Lysis Group
  • Brandon Debattista – senior legal counsel, MGA
  • Sam Brown – Chief Commerical Officer, Hero Gaming

The first issue raised was that of ‘responsible gaming’, an idea of more open and transparent online gaming that prevents unfair or malicious behaviour on the part of both casinos and players.

Speakers discussed the need for regulation when it comes to gambling to ensure the safety of players, with each expert outlining why recording online gaming transactions on the BSV public ledger was an exceptionally secure and efficient option for ensuring responsible gaming.

Brandon Debattista noted that blockchain technology could help to ensure compliance with online gambling regulations, a factor he expected that regulatory bodies would likely have no issue with.

‘From the MGA perspective, we make a distinction between using blockchain as a payment method or using DLT in the actual gaming environment’ he said.

‘But ultimately, if blockchain is used in order to boost regulatory compliance we have no reservation as a regulator if a particular operator does this with blockchain.’

Compliance with gambling regulations is a significant application of blockchain technology, particularly BSV, and speakers discussed the myriad benefits of deploying the BSV blockchain to aid in ‘responsible gambling’.

Watch this session in full.

Panel discussion: Advertising and marketing on BSV

Becky Liggero on stage sitting with black stiletto

Next up, Becky Liggero Fontana chaired a panel discussion on affiliate marketing and advertising on BSV, with the following speakers:

  • TonicPow Luke Rohenaz – co-founder and CEO, TonicPow
  • Frank Vertolli – co-founder and managing partner, Net Conversion
  • Lee-Ann Johnstone – founder and CEO, AffiliateINSIDER

Fontana kicked off the conversation by asking about the challenges faced by marketing and advertising companies operating using traditional models. Speakers noted the disproportionate power of companies like Google and Facebook in driving regulation and altering the space of digital marketing.

The panel also looked at the ways BSV could engender a new model for digital marketing that places more power in the hands of providers and users themselves. The need for further transparency and data interoperability was a key topic of the conversation, along with how blockchain technology could improve efficiency in this regard.

‘Bitcoin can be thought of as a neutral database that many companies can all-access,’ Luke Rohenaz explained.
‘If you structure data in the same way from one company to another you can read it and process it. So, there is a natural fit for data interoperability.’

Watch this session in full.

Panel discussion: The future of trading

Roger Wurzel CEO DLT Finance Group

After a brief coffee break, Ella Qiang took the stage to moderate a discussion around the future of trading within the new world of digital assets. The discussion was graced by the following speakers:

  • Armen Azatyan – co-founder and CEO, TDXP
  • Jacob Salk – president, BitcoinSV.Exchange
  • Daniel Skowronski – general manager, Fabriik Exchange
  • Roger Wurzel – CEO, DLT Finance Group

Each speaker began by introducing their business and their relationship with the trading of digital assets. This included an introduction to the new BitcoinSV.Exchange platform, which Jacob Salk said is set to launch by the end of this month.

‘We will support all Bitcoin SV tokens, NFTs and other securities. It is a global offshore exchange and we anticipate doing the full launch by the end of June,’ Salk said.

The discussion ranged from the business models of Bitcoin SV and digital asset exchanges to the implementation of loyalty and reward programmes to drive growth and ensure that users are rewarded and involved in holding exchanges accountable.

This type of functionality is far easier and cheaper to build on Bitcoin SV, speakers noted, highlighting that the low transaction fees and support for tokenised assets make Bitcoin SV the best choice for everything from high-volume exchanges to token marketplaces.

Panellists also touched on the growing demand for a new asset class of digital tokens and assets and highlighted the need to meet this demand in a scalable and user-friendly manner.

Watch this session in full.

Keynote: Fundstrat Global Advisors

The next session was a keynote presentation by Fundstrat managing partner Thomas Lee and director David Grider. The presentation began with a focus on digital assets and projections around the industry for the coming year.

In an evaluation of the current state of the cryptocurrency space, Lee noted the prevalence of NFTs as a new class of assets for speculative trading, as well as the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on overall trading trends.

Grider looked at the unique traits of BSV which make it stand out from other blockchains, including its support for scalable enterprise applications and high data throughput.

‘One of [BSV]’s key technical differences is the way that it allows for unbounded scaling for its block size and what that means for the data capacity of its network. One thing we think is important to distinguish is that BSV has become really geared towards the Web 3.0 movement,’ Grider said.

He also explained how the BSV blockchain can act as the base layer for different applications across several industries, as well as for second-layer networks that run on top of the network.

Watch this session in full.

Keynote: MNP and the original Bitcoin protocol

MNP partner Hassan “Hash” Qureshi and former MNP partner and independent consultant Brian Beveridge took the stage next to deliver a keynote presentation on the importance of the original Bitcoin protocol.

The presentation covered four areas of an upcoming paper based on a study conducted by the firm which comprised an independent study of the original Bitcoin protocol. The purpose of this report was to determine which current Bitcoin implementation was the one most closely aligned with the original protocol described by Satoshi Nakamoto in his 2008 white paper.

‘Currently, there are several competing Bitcoin implementations and our paper examined two of those implementations – Bitcoin Core and Bitcoin Satoshi’s Vision (BSV),’ the presentation stated.

‘After examining Bitcoin Core and Bitcoin SV, our assessment framework indicates that Bitcoin SV is the implementation that best aligns with what Satoshi originally intended.’

The assessment framework used to reach this conclusion comprised comprehensive testing criteria which compared both BTC and BSV across several metrics. It also looked at comparisons between both blockchains and fiat currency systems, noting that a significant amount of work remains to ensure BSV becomes competitively accessible and efficient.

Watch this session in full.

Panel discussion: BSV is green Bitcoin

Next up, Bitcoin Association technical outreach manager for North America Bryan Daugherty addressed the popular argument around the sustainability and environmental impact of Bitcoin in a panel discussion with the following participants:

Steve Shadders – technical director, Bitcoin SV Infrastructure Team
Angela Holowaychuk – executive board member and CMO, TAAL
Kirsteen Harrison – environmental and sustainability advisor, Zumo
Zach Resnick – managing partner, Unbounded Capital

To begin, Steve Shadders gave a brief explanation of how scaling the BSV network helps with sustainability, alluding to the previous day’s demonstration of 50,000 transactions per second processed using the TeraNode software.

‘There is a lot of talk about the energy cost of Bitcoin per transaction,’ Shadders begun.

‘When you increase the transaction rate by 50,000 without actually increasing the energy consumption of the entire network, you have essentially dropped the per-transaction cost by that same factor,.’

Speakers concurred that energy sources powering the BSV network should move more towards renewable energy as scaling increases to boost the environmental efficiency even more as the network scales.

Zach Resnick also offered an interesting fact in the comparison between the price of energy to run VISA’s payment network and BSV:

‘From our preliminary analysis, we are seeing that it costs about half a cent to process a transaction on the VISA network, and it is slightly more than half a cent on BSV,’ Resnick said.

Angela Holowaychuk gave an in-depth explanation of TAAL’s operations and its commitment to sustainable mining to improve the environmental footprint of BSV, while Kirsteen Harrison detailed her extensive experience in environmental sustainability and how she is applying this expertise to the cryptocurrency space.

Watch this session in full.

Keynote: Dr Craig S. Wright on Bitcoin and the future of data

The second day of CoinGeek Zurich 2021 rounded off with a keynote address by nChain Chief Scientist Dr Craig S. Wright, who spoke about the future of data and how this will empower everybody in the world.

He began with an explosive polemic aimed at the business models of modern-day Silicon Valley companies and their appropriation of the personal autonomy of everyday Internet users.

‘We are going your data back to you. In the next four years, we are going to give you the foundation so that there will never be a Twitter again, ever. There won’t be a Facebook. We are going to destroy their business model,’ Wright said.

‘We are going to give you the ability to own your information. So, if you want something like Twitter, you own your feed and you can move to a new frontend if you don’t like a certain platform. Your data stays with you,’ he said.

Wright’s address drove home a core concept behind Bitcoin – the ability to empower its users by giving them ownership over their own data and the power to interact with it without requiring permission from other entities.

He also advocated for the eventual perspective of Bitcoin as ‘boring plumbing’, stating that at the point when it is ubiquitous, that will be the point when users are truly empowered through their connection to the Internet through BSV.

‘I want a world where we are going to start building, where we are going to create, and we’re going to give people economic freedom to do this,’ Wright said.

Watch this session in full.

 

Watch the full livestream of day two of CoinGeek’s 2021 Zurich Conference here.