Monthly Archives: March 2016

Interview With Kobocoin Dev

The Kobocoin dev was kind enough to take some time out of his busy schedule to give “The Dood” an interview. I sincerely thank him for giving me this opportunity to share his story, and also for taking the time to answer my questions. I also should disclose that “The Dood” does hold a small amount of Kobocoin. With that said, please enjoy this interview with the Kobocoin dev.

Kobocoin

First off thanks for taking the time to answer the questions for this interview. I really appreciate it. I recently moved servers, and lost 3 months of old blog posts, and this will be the first interview on the new blog. Thanks for giving me the time and opportunity to help get the word out about Kobocoin.

Thank you as well for the interview. It’s really appreciated. Exposure is definitely required in such a fast-moving industry. Kobocoin is going through a period of rapid development and it’s great to be able to take that news to the wider public. Kobocoin was recently listed as one of the African FinTech 100. These are among the most innovative and disruptive startups in Africa. We’re also one of the nominees for the African FinTech Awards. http://www.fintechafrica.co.za/fintech-100.html. It’s good to get that news out there, so thanks!

And sorry about the data loss. I recently went through the same thing when I lost a server, but thanks to GitHub I was able to recover everything quickly. Ironically, the data loss and rebuild has made the KOBO mobile wallets more stable and reliable. It was a good test of a backup/restore strategy. I only lost 1 night’s sleep and 2 pints of sweat, so not too bad.

So if you don’t mind, could you please tell the readers a little about yourself and your relationship to KoboCoin?

I’m the dev for Kobocoin. I’m not really an über-coder like most devs. I’m a community member with a vision of mainstream cryptocurrency adoption and I do have a day job. Crypto is an industry where I’m constantly learning new stuff. I’ve been involved with cryptocurrencies since mid-2013 when I started investigating bitcoin. I became a Litecoin miner for some time, then decided to look into other altcoins and discovered a lot of innovations taking place outside the bitcoin ecosystem. I used to make a lot of noise on forums about cryptocurrencies not being user-friendly enough, and being unfairly hoarded by the few. I also used to bang on about tech developments being nice for the crypto community but not something the wider public understood, or even desired. Kobocoin is some ideas I have about the industry in one cryptocurrency but released in the hope of adoption by the wider public.

I read that there was no ICO/IPO/or premine. How many people are currently involved with the project and is it entirely community supported?

At the moment it’s a one man project supported by a very loyal community. We also get a lot of support and encouragement from other projects, which is always appreciated as well.

Doing a little research on your coin, I see it’s geared towards the people of the continent of Africa. How did you come up with the idea for the coin, and was it born out of a necessity that you saw needed to be filled?

I’d had the idea for an African cryptocurrency for some time after I’d seen how cryptocurrencies work and discovered their mobile capabilities utilising QR codes. Africa is by far the largest mobile FinTech market on the planet. It’s so far ahead of the rest of the world that its mobile FinTech is being exported globally. I believe that the current offerings have barriers to entry that Kobocoin doesn’t have. They also charge a lot more than you’d probably expect. It’s said that 80% of Africa doesn’t have a financial history of any kind. I grew up in Nigeria. I never had a bank account. I never even considered opening one. Kobocoin would definitely have suited me. Participation doesn’t require a financial history of any kind. All that’s required is a wallet and some KOBO. No registration necessary, no subscription required, no questions asked. Mobile, web, or desktop. That’s it. Smartphone growth in Africa is booming. Kobocoin is ready to bring the next level of mobile FinTech home to make a difference.

Now Africa is the second largest and I believe the second most populated continent on the planet. It covers over 54 individual countries and also the Western Sahara. Is the coin geared towards any particular group or groups of African people or for the entire continent in general?

Kobocoin is a global cryptocurrency with an African heritage. It has a West African outlook in terms of the original concept, the naming of the 4 denominations, and the maximum number of coins that will ever be produced. I wanted to make sure that we Africans have our own cryptocurrency ready to adopt when the time comes. The names used for the KOBO denominations were carefully selected. They have been used in Africa, and the world over, for centuries of trading. Kobocoin as a currency can be easily adopted, globally, without getting lost in translation. In fact the most mobile wallets have been downloaded from Saudi Arabia and China. There’s also a lot of interest from the Philippines.

Do you see the coin as direct competition with services like Vodafone’s M-Pesa and BitPesa for remittances ? Also could you tell the readers how Kobocoin differs from these services?

Yes, and no. I’ve dabbled with Kobocoin being used for remittance but, at its heart, KOBO is meant to be used as a peer-to-peer currency. It is built and intended for person-to-person, face-to-face transactions. The idea of remittance to Africa is a great one. It’s an $80bn+ market, and perfect for the low costs of cryptocurrency transmission. In that respect we are more aligned with BitPesa than M-Pesa. But we’re hoping for a more direct means of remittance transport. I’d like to see individuals using the KOBO wallets themselves rather than relying on any third party services acting as an intermediary. In reality, there are so many conditions necessary to achieving a presence in the African remittance space. The main one for any cryptocurrency is trading volume. Without it, remittance is a dream.

I’ve read that parts of Africa are a little slow to adopt new technologies and also cryptocurrency in general. Is this trend changing and do you see Kobocoin as an easy solution to introduce more of the people of Africa to cryptocurrency?

I can’t say I see that changing more quickly than it is already. It’s easier for people in the West to try out new tech with the disposable incomes they have. One thing I know about back home is that money is not to be played with. I don’t see that attitude changing very quickly, but in saying that you also have to remember that Africa is the world’s largest adopter of mobile FinTech, by a very wide margin. So you have to question who is actually being slow in adopting new technologies? Kobocoin, with its human friendly naming conventions, will definitely make it easier for people to relate to the concepts of cryptocurrency, their subdivisions, and lack of a middleman in transacting. It’s a very easy entry point into a highly complex industry.

I would love to see a day when we no longer have to cash out cryptocurrency, and can pay and get paid in cryptocurrency without the use of government backed fiat. Do you see this happening sooner in parts of Africa where many people don’t have bank accounts, and how do we get to the point where none of us depend on government backed fiat currency anymore? Do you think that’s even possible?

Yes I do. Barter is very important back home. If something has value, then people are happy to exchange it for what they need. In this respect I think Africa could lead the way with cryptocurrency adoption in the near future. I personally feel that fiat money is not as important to people as what it does for them. If you can replace fiat with another form of ‘trusted’ value transfer then people will be more than happy to adopt it. Remember that M-Pesa itself was borne out of people spontaneously using airtime as a proxy for money transfer. Kenyans were transferring airtime to their relatives or friends who were then using it or reselling it. This shows that people are happy to use whatever is of value for their own purposes or goods and services. I believe that once people accept the intrinsic value of cryptocurrencies you’ll see a rapid rate of adoption and usage. Statistics say 80% of Africa is unbanked. Kobocoin, and cryptocurrencies in general, offer a direct route to mobile FinTech without the hurdles.

There are so many altcoins now and I think that is a good thing for the most part.
Competition creates innovation. Do you care to talk about any of the differences that separate Kobocoin from other altcoins on the market? Any special wallet innovation that you care to tell the readers about and why they might want to use Kobocoin or its wallet over other products currently available?

Kobocoin is optimised for mobile phone usage. It’s one of the faster cryptocurrencies available and is actually 4 currency denominations in one. The main unit is KOBO, followed by MANILLA (mKOBO), COWRIE (uKOBO), and finally MANSA (satoshi). These human friendly subdivisions allow for KOBO to be easily used as a microtransaction tool. It’s one of the few cryptocurrencies with Android and Blackberry wallets currently available and in daily use already. It has the global infrastructure to ensure 24×7 reliability. I’m also in the process of building the Javascript client libraries to allow a new breed of web and mobile wallets to be developed. We already have an address-to-address private messaging sidechain and I’m looking into how new sidechains can be used to further extend the capabilities of the blockchain. And don’t let me forget that KOBO can also be used for twitter tipping (which is how we first met!). I’m hoping that KOBO tips can one day be exchanged for phone credit or any other necessities over the internet.

One of the things I discovered while researching the coin is that there was no ICO or premine and there will only be 350,000,000 max coins created. If I read correct the coin is now past the POW stage and is strictly POS. Last I checked the coin was fluctuating between 200 and 500 satoshi, any comment on where you see future valuation of this coin? Do you think it’s currently undervalued?

Do you really expect any dev to say their currency isn’t undervalued?? Yes, PoW ended 1 month after launch. It was quite an exciting time; we achieved some massive unexpected hash rates that month. It’s now pure PoS with 10% reward per annum to encourage long term stakeholding. I personally feel that the important thing for any cryptocurrency is not the unit price but the trading volume. Without a large enough trading volume the currency doesn’t have any stability. Without stability it won’t be seen as a reliable and trustworthy store of value and, as a consequence, will struggle to gain adoption. As a wish upon a star, I’d like to see the KOBO daily exchange volume hit a minimum of $1m for a 6 month period. That would definitely mean stability!

Final thoughts? Anything you would like to tell the readers about the coin or wallet that hasn’t been answered in the previous questions ?

There are many developments on the horizon for Kobocoin. The new Javascript libraries being released very soon are only another step in building a cryptocurrency ecosystem that’s custom built for the needs of African continent. There is a Kobocoin platform in development that will allow easy access to the blockchain and also allow interested parties to build services on it.

I see Kobocoin is currently available from yobit.net and coinexchange.io. Are there any other places we can purchase Kobocoins or any exchanges you are currently in the process of negotiating with that you are able to talk about?

I’m in the process of talking to a few other exchanges and the sounds are positive so far. I really want to roll out more services on the blockchain and continue with spreading the Kobocoin message. With the current marketing and twitter push I’m hoping to expand the community. When we do hit the larger exchanges we’ll have the volume to keep everybody happy.

OK, one last question! I ask all my interviews the same last question. Where do you see cryptocurrency going in the future? Any thoughts, visions, or predictions you might want to share about the future of cryptocurrency in general?

I see banks and cryptocurrencies existing side by side just as online shopping exists side by side with bricks and mortar. I don’t see the death of either. I see Africa lead the way in mobile cryptocurrency adoption with an explosion out-of-nowhere that no-one is expecting, or ready for. And, in general, I think BRICS will lead the way in crypto adoption.

Bloggers note: For anyone that doesn’t know, BRICS is an acronym that references the emerging national economies of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa

Well that’s it… I really appreciate you taking the time to answer my questions and share the Kobocoin story with my readers. I’ve been playing around with the coin for about a week and absolutely love it. The Dood’s a big fan of POS, and I think that’s a great feature for any coin, especially for people who hold any amount of cryptocurrency and not just cash out as soon as they recieve it. I’ll certainly be using the coin more in the future. Best of luck to the Kobocoin team, and with all your future endeavors!

Thank you. And welcome to the KOBO community!

Thanks!

Again, I’d really like to take a second and thank the Kobocoin dev for taking the time to answer my questions. The Dood really enjoyed this interview and hope you , the reader, also found this informative and useful. Again, in the spirit of disclosure, I do have a small amount of Kobocoin, and plan on purchasing more in the future. This is not meant as investment advice. To find out more about this interesting coin, and do your own due diligence, check out the following links.

The Bitcointalk Announcement Page.

http://kobocoin.com/

Coin Market Cap

Git Hub

Twitter

Now available at: coinexchange.io and yobit.net

Kobocoin

Kobocoin

 

BATA – BTA Pick Of The Month

BATA

BATA interesting coin of the month.

I’m going to start picking a couple coins a month to write about. These are just coins that I’m interested in and not meant as investment advice. In the spirit of full disclosure I will always mention if I’m invested in a coin, and I am currently invested in this one.

In celebration of another halving, I decided to write a quick review on BATA BTA. The coin had no premine, no ico, and no crowdfund. This is always a good sign it’s not a quick pump and dump scam. I’ve been invested in this coin since December when I first discovered it and watched it continuously rise since.

It has all the security features, and privacy features many people come to expect from a cryptocurrency. BTA Wallet has integration with i2P and TOR – a hidden wallet address provides privacy and extra security including TOR & i2P integration.

There will only be 5,000,000 BATA created. On top of that you have a dedicated and productive dev team, and a small committed community.  To me this looks like the perfect recipe for success.

Looking at the coins marketcap, I really don’t understand why there isn’t more interest in this coin. http://coinmarketcap.com/currencies/bata/ With the available supply, it also seems undervalued.

The coin is available on several exchanges including Bittrex, Bleutrade, and Cryptopia.

You can follow the dev teams progress on their bitcointalk Ann page. https://bitcointalk.org/index.php?topic=1040956.0

Website: http://www.bata.io/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/Bata_Money

If you have some extra time, this coin really seems worthy of looking into further.

Creating A Blockchain.info Wallet

A quick video I did on setting up a simple blockchain.info wallet. This is a nice simple wallet to use and also gives you access to your bitcoin online. This wallet is great for people just starting out that might want a really easy wallet to use and set up. It’s also great for people who would like to have a little bitcoin handy online at all times. I’ve used one of these for close to two years now and I wouldn’t store my life savings here, but it’s perfect for having a few dollars of play around bitcoin available online whenever you need it.

If you were storing a large investment in bitcoin, you might want to look into a hardware wallet or even a cold storage paper wallet. I’ll post more on those in a future video.

Find this info useful: 1MDfoP9X3CYD7mNgCMjLn4m5ANdJmNX4is

Mooncoin Rising.

In the spirit of disclosure I should mention I’ve been invested in this coin for some time now. The stats don’t lie though. This coin has been on a nice steady rise now for the last few weeks. Check out the 24 hour stats from Bleutrade.

Mooncoin Rising

Mooncoin Rising. Nice 24 hour stats.

For more info on Mooncoin you can check out the website. http://www.mooncoin.com/

Charts http://coinmarketcap.com/currencies/mooncoin/

Dood Reviews Coinwallet.co Tipbot and POS Pool

Coinwallet.co has decided to close. For more information click here.

I’m back… I have to admit I haven’t been super motivated to write anything. Losing three months of blog posts was a real kick in the nuts! Anyway, I’m back and for my first real post on the new server I thought I would review coinwallet.co

So the other day , @kobocoindev on twitter was kind enough to send The Dood a tip of some Kobocoin using the coinwallet.co twitter tipbot. I had been looking for a multi-currency tipbot to use since the fall of whitepuma and when I learned about CoinWallet.co I was pretty excited. After signing up and claiming my tip, I discovered so much more than a multi-currency tipbot.

The tipbot is just a small feature of what coinwallet.co actually offers. The service works like an online cryptocurrency wallet for over 75 different cryptocurrencies. You can use the twitter tipbot to tip on twitter in over 75 different cryptocurrencies, and it also acts as a stake pool for any coins that are Proof Of Stake! Very cool feature.

If you don’t know what POS (Proof Of Stake) is, simply put, you put some coins aside in a wallet, when the coins mature, usually after 24 hours or more. The stake or the reserved coins begin to earn interest. There’s actually a lot more going on in the background but for the purpose of this review, that over simplified explanation will do. If you want to learn more about POS check out this older article by Vitalik Buterin written in 2013.

With that said, after playing around with the service for a few days, here’s my review and what I found.

Sign up was simple. Just go to the registration page, create a username, enter an email address, and create a password. Hit register and you’re ready to start.

Registratoin on coinwallet.co is easy

Simple registration. Just create a username, enter an email account, create your password, hit register, and you’re good to go.

Once you’re signed up, just login to your account, type in your username, password and the captcha and enter the site.

The first thing I did was turn on 2FA. Two factor authorization sends either a text message to your phone or you can use the google authenticator. Either method gives you a code on your phone that you need to log into your account. With 2FA activated nobody can get into your account,  even if they have your username and password, unless they have your phone too. To activate 2FA just click on the Settings tab at the top of the page and following the instructions.

Set up security features.

For security set up google authenticator or two factor authorization.

Once you set up your security, it’s time to get some coin into your account. This works like any other wallet for the most part. Just click on the Dashboard link. Find the coin you want to add. Click the wallet button, then on the next page click on the “My Addresses” tab and then the Generate Address button. Once you get your address , start sending coin to the account. To see the confirmations, and the coins you recieved, just click on the “Recieved” tab.

Click on wallet to add cryptocurrency

Each coin gets its own wallet. Click on the wallet buttn for the selected coin and add your favorite cryptocurrency.

add cryptocurrency

Generate address and add cryptocurrency for staking, storage or tipping on twitter.

Coinwallet.co can handle over 75 different cryptocurrencies. This is really cool in itself. Once you deposit the coins in your account, it automatically starts staking them for you. To check the status of your staking, just click the POS button and it will show you all your POS Pool payments. This is a really cool feature.

Click the POS button to view your pool payouts.

To see your stake payments, just click the POS button to view your pool rewards. Very cool!

Stake payouts

Here are some of the POS of payments recieved in just 3 days. The Dood loves the Proof OF Stake.

Like any other wallet, you can send coins to any other address buy clicking the send button. Then send the coin to the address of your choice.

To send cryptocurrency just hit the send button.

Just click the send button to send out cryptocurrency.

Simple to use send feature.

Sending cryptocurrency is easy with coinwallet.co. Select the currency, enter the address, the amount, a note if desired, and click pay now.

Finally next to the staking feature, the twitter tipbot is extremely cool. Sending a tip on twitter is as simple as typing

@CoinWalletco tip @BitcoinDood $CoinTickerSymbol AMOUNT message.

Here’s an example of a tip I sent:

 

What The Dood Likes ….

Overall The Dood really likes this service. The proof of stake feature is a really great idea. I’ve been staking OKcash for some time now , and I sent the same amount to my coinwallet.co account and in the same amount of time my stake rewards were just a little less than what I receive in the same amount of time using ROKOS on my RaspberryPi. When you add your energy costs to staking on your own, the slight difference is completely justifiable. For a full list of coins, and their maturity time click here.

I’ve been looking for a multi-coin tipbot since WhitePuma closed at the end of last year. I absolutely love the tipbot feature. With all those coins to choose from, you can send all your twitter pals, their favorite coins in tips. It’s also a great way to introduce them to this service.

What The Dood Doesn’t Like…

There’s really not a lot not to like. I’d love to see a service like this that comes up with a way for members to hold their own private keys. Without access to the private keys, just like on any exchange you probably use now, technically you don’t own the coins, the exchange does. I don’t like this at all. All things considered, if you don’t put your life savings in here, and it’s even suggested that you don’t on the websites faq, you should be OK.

The other thing I didn’t like is two times I had a hard time connecting to the server. This wasn’t to bothersome, and things happen from time to time. It could of just been a high server load, or something on my end, but it did bother me enough to reduce my staking amount to just a few dollars until I get a little more comfortable using the service. I’ve been around for a little while now, and I do get a bit nervous letting other people maintain my coins.

Final thoughts !

With the exception of the server time outs, I absolutely love this service. Again, I wouldn’t store my life savings here, but it is a fun way to stake some extra coin you might have sitting around on an exchange, or in a wallet that you rarely load up. With so many POS coins, it can tie up a lot of system resources to stake each of them on your own equipment, so this is a great solution. Again, be safe, and don’t get carried away. I will admit I loaded up a bunch of BitBean, and it’s really fun to hit refresh every few hours and see your coins grow.

The tipbot is a brilliant idea, and I can’t say enough about how happy I am to find a decent replacement to WhitePuma. I sent out some DigiByte to a friend and this will probably become my tipbot of choice from here on out.

I plan on using this service regularly, and I’ll post some updates on my staking, and also how the service works out for me. For the most part, I’ve been playing around with it for three days now, and I absolutely love it.

Bitcoin Borat says “Great Success!”

Bitcoin Borat

Bitcoin Borat says Great Success!