Christopher Franko’s Vision for Expanse

Decoding the CEO’s Vision: Can Expanse Ensure Universal Basic Income?

In a 2019 publication of the World Bank titled, “Exploring Universal Basic Income: A Guide to Navigating Concepts, Evidence, and Practices” Ugo Gentilini and other scholars state that, many of the low and middle-income countries like Indonesia, India, Bangladesh, Pakistan and Nigeria which house 2.1 billion of the world’s population provide social insurance coverage to only 10% of its working population. 

This is mostly because of the legacy of colonial social security measures which were modeled on the welfare policies that were adopted in the wake of the industrial revolution. These policies differentiated between the deserving and non-deserving poor in terms of participation in the industrial system.

But in the post-industrial era where there is large scale decentralization and informalization of the production process, along with huge deficiencies in public amenities like health care benefits and inexpensive quality education, such differentiation within the poor population is largely unsuited.

The need to institutionalize social transfers has taken a very new dimension within this economic system. And it is for this reason that the advocates of Universal Basic Income are propagating a very different form of social transfer. But there are certain inherent difficulties that the traditional economy poses to its implementation.

Reasons for the Evasiveness of UBI and How Expanse Can Help? 

The basic features of this system include, universal, unconditional, and in cash. But while it is true as the critics suggest that getting unconditional cash might lead to mass absenteeism and lack of competitiveness in the labor market, it is equally true that the poor might want to use that cash to invest in commodities that will improve their quality of life in the future.

However, as the Nobel laureate economist, Abhijit Banerjee along with his associates has suggested through various experiments, Universal Basic Income can, in fact, be a very transformative intervention in the lives of those stricken with poverty and who find it difficult to be able to think about the uncertain opportunities that lie ahead in the future.

Economists found that with cash transfers up to a certain level, these people were able to put aside the internal, mental, and emotional constraints that were holding them back to invest in opportunities that will reap greater benefits and provide economic stability in the future. But in the face of an unequal market, it becomes a problem of unequal access. 

A decentralized platform like Expanse enables its users to establish decentralized organizations within their blockchain-based platform. Therefore, beneficiaries can not only use their surplus earnings to invest in these platforms but also purchase goods and services from these platforms. As well as contribute to the organization and earn additional from here.

It can be a parallel transparent economic sphere which will add guaranteed additional income to the people. The growth of the ecosystem and increase in the value of the currency, EXP, that will be a result of effective investment and contributions through productive work, can be enjoyed by all the stakeholders.

However, there is the question of the validity of the true universality of any benefit transfers from the state to think about. This question is however more complex and requires a detailed analysis and needs to be divided in two different questions.

1. Is Targeting Efficient?

In the case of developing countries targeting is very costly and will come with a significant administrative burden. It can, in fact, lead to greater corruption and cornering up of the resources by undeserving and more privileged populations. In this respect, universality makes the political economy of redistribution more efficient. 

Moreover, the intra-household inequalities can go unnoticed in case of targeting of poor households, which tends to be the most standard protocol of targeting households for benefits. Rather, the methods suggested by Banerjee and associates of disincentivizing the wealthy from getting the benefits can be more efficient. Moreover, community participation and support for the scheme can weaken with the targeted distribution. 

2. Are Universal Coverages Really Universal?

When the financing of such a project is considered, the universality comes under question. If for example, we consider financing universal coverage through the fiscal budget, we might end up bringing about a system that is solely dependent on progressive taxation. And therefore for a section of people, the net income from the transfers will be lower than the existence of such a scheme. Or it might lead to large fiscal deficits. 

Does Expanse Hold the Key?

Again Expanse can be an effective substitute. Being on a blockchain, the crypto-based cash transfers can be monitored at a much lower cost. Secondly, it can supplement the government’s revenue base being a parallel economy, independent of the fiat. Therefore, the fiscal burden does not have to be borne by the state in the form of fiscal deficits or liabilities.

Rather in this system, a decentralized organization that is driven by smart contracts will set out minimum requirements for deriving benefits. This system will help the government to not only reach out to the community with greater transparency but will also leverage support for the scheme by not having to burden the wealthier groups, leading to a sustainable model of capitalism. 

The importance of gamification in education and social living

Every so often, a revolutionary innovation comes about and changes the way in which our society interacts. In this category can be clubbed together the greatest inventions the world has seen—from the printing press to social networking. Yet another idea that holds the potential to bring about a grand change in the way we live and grow is gamification.

Understanding Gamification 

Gamification can be briefly defined as the application of game-design elements in non-gaming contexts. The purpose of gamification is to engage the user more with whatever he is doing and thus increase interest and make the task or the learning process more enjoyable. It is based on a principle which supposes that the outcome is always better when the doer finds pleasure in performing an act. This concept can be applied to education as well as other social interactions to enhance learning and other tasks.

Gamification in Education

Gamification in education can be understood as an approach to carry forth the learning process by the means of video game designs and the use of game elements in educational endeavors. As already explained, the motivation behind this approach is to generate more enjoyment and engagement by capturing the interest of the learners.

Why Gamify Education? 

It has been found by researchers and teachers all around the world that the more a student engages, the better he learns. Studies on gamification reveal that the uses of gamification increase the engagement of the students with what they are learning.

  • Gamification encourages healthy competition between students.
  • It discourages rote and thus makes students more creative.
  • It reduces learning stress.
  • It makes feedback more constructive and positive.
  • According to some studies, gamification inevitably increases the speed of the learning process.

These are only a few of the many reasons why gamification should be incorporated in the learning process.

Ways to Gamify

Now that the benefits of gamification are clear, let us take a look at some ways in which gamification can be implemented in the learning process.

  • A professor at Indiana University did away with the grading system and introduced an ‘experience point‘ system. In other words, the students were given points based on what they accomplished overall rather than the marks they earned in the examination. Gamification of examinations and an innovative system to replace the conventional grading system can not only make the learning process stress free for students but can also give them a greater sense of achievement and satisfaction once it is over.
  • Instead of conventional lectures and classroom sessions, the use of interactive videos and video games as alternative sources of learning can greatly enhance the performance of students.
  • A platform like Top Hat allows the introduction of tournaments in the process of learning and makes it fairly and positively competitive which can also encourage the students to work hard and achieve better results.

These are only some ways in which gamification could be added to our educational setups. Many more innovative additions could further explore the full potential of gamification in education.

Gamification in Social Living

Other than education, gamification has a lot of use cases in social living as well. This can be explored in a better way by looking at the examples of how gamification has been incorporated into social living.

Fitness: Exercising is important, but it is really hard to stay motivated. Most of the people do begin a workout schedule but give up on it a few days later. Gamification is changing that by keeping people motivated to exercise. A wonderful example is that of Fitbit which gives users rewards and incentives to motivate them to be physically active.

Marketing: Gamification has also been widely used by companies and corporations to retain customers by offering incentives and rewards. This was done most notably by Starbucks who offered the customers badges for checking in several times.

Donation Drives: Gamification is also being used to motivate people to participate in donation drives. Games for donation platforms like FoldIt and CrowdRise are encouraging players and raising money for many charity purposes around the globe.

Parting Words

Gamification has been criticized for many reasons and yet its potential to transform learning and social living cannot be negated. Furthermore, it still has a lot of potential for development which can only be realized if more innovative ideas are invested in it. It is clear from the interest and growth in its adoption that it is certainly going to be the future of learning and a number of other day to day social interactions.

Gamification of Health Apps: Where Staying Fit is (Really) Fun

In this article, we discuss why a food journal is vital for sufferers and how or to-be-launched Allergy Finder App is a great tool that is made even more intuitive and fun to use with its strong gamification aspect.  

What is Gamification

A very simple definition of gamification would say that it is the application of game design and style in non-gaming contexts. This approach is used to solve problems by engaging the players or participants in otherwise everyday tasks and making these activities more fun and interesting.

Nowadays, gamification is being used in many industries, including healthcare, transforming mundane user experiences into the excitement of playing a game. Mostly, it is used in fitness applications, medical adherence and medical education.

Here we explore the gamification of health applications, which has, undeniably, made staying fit fun.

Gamification in Health Applications

Gamification not only increases our focus but also enables us to attain goals which otherwise would have been too difficult for us to reach. This aspect of gamification has successfully been exploited by the health industry. As early as 2016, Fitbit announced that it was teaming up with other corporations to track employees and use the data to track their health habits. Thus, in the beginning, Fitbit was used by various companies as a fitness tracker for their employees, motivating them to take better care of their well-being in the corporate rat-race. Slowly, gamification was incorporated in many other fitness apps, at which we shall take a brief look.

Examples of Gamification in Health Applications

Pact: Perhaps this is the most fun of all fitness applications out there. Pact tracks fitness on mobile phone devices and those users who do not meet their fitness goals have to contribute money—which goes to those users who have met their goals! It is only natural that nobody likes to pay anyone on their expense.

Mango Health: On a completely different level, Mango Health is an application which motivates patients to take their medications on time. The users set a time on which they need to take medications and the app reminds them like an alarm. Having taken their medications properly, they earn points and get gift cards and more. The application also educates patients about drugs and their side effects.

EveryMove: EveryMove uses competitiveness to motivate users to stay fit. It collects data from mobile devices and allows friends to compare one another’s progress.

mySugr: mySugr is an Australian startup which provides a fun solution for diabetes management. It has a separate app for helping children with diabetes management which is called mySugr Junior App. mySugr has been very successful with all age groups and it has more than one million registered users and is available in 52 countries in at least 13 languages. Most recently, it was acquired by the pharmaceutical giant Roche.

How Gamification can Help people Fight Food Allergies

Gamification has been steadily on rise in various industries including education, marketing and social living. It has been of a particular success in the health industry. Where it is hard for people to keep up their spirits while trying to be fit, gamification not only helps them achieve this goal but also brings much fun in the process. 

32 million Americans have food allergies. That means one in every 10 adults and one in every 13 children. Researchers have found an increasing prevalence in food allergies in the industrialized world for the past 50 years. The burden of this problem is the fact that there has been a steady rise in the number of ER visits for food allergy-related emergencies. 

While there is no cure for food allergies, the best way to stay away from it is through prevention and avoiding food that you are allergic to. But how do you identify which food you are allergic to? 

Food journaling or a food diary is a great way to identify the ‘culprit’. Maintaining a food journal can be an extremely helpful way to avoid “rogue” foods and to keep track of adverse reactions when they happened so as to avoid them the next time. 

In the food journal, keep making entries every time you eat or drink something. Record if you show any allergic symptoms like itching, coughing, swelling, redness, diarrhea, stomach ache, wheezing, etc. Record the time when the symptoms start. This information is vital for you and your doctor to strategize your dietary schedule and avoid certain foods.

Maintaining a physical journal can be cumbersome for most sufferers. A manual food diary also does not make analysis easy. Everything, from recording meals to analyzing potential allergens and problem foods has to be done manually. This can become quite a task. Maybe things would become a whole lot easier if there was an easy to use app for it? Would not a digital food journal help?

In the last newsletter, we had mentioned about the development of the Allergy Finder App. This app is more than a food journal though. It is a community empowerment tool, where collective data will help sufferers take control of their health. We are in the process of giving the final touches to the app and we expect to launch it soon.

The app is free to download and comes with a 7-day free trial. After that users will need to subscribe to continue using its services at a flat rate of $34.99 per year. 

A lot of thought has gone into the making of this app with subject matter experts, tech experts and food allergy sufferers chipping in with their insights. We believe that this app will be a great tool for the millions of food allergy sufferers to take control of their condition and live a healthy life with informed dietary choices.   

Why this is the right time to invest in Expanse

It is evident that the digital currency markets are going to strengthen in the future in the light of the growing volumes of digital currency transactions and holdings. 2gether, a major fintech company, noted a 22% rise in trading volumes in a week in March itself, which is when the global economic lockdown was only beginning.

It was, however, marked by a dip in the prices of Bitcoin which was attributed to the panic sell-off of Bitcoin holdings. On the other hand, experts have pointed out that the reason for the dip can be more accurately attributed to the halving process which is repeated every four years. These halving processes can be predicted by experts along with their specific impact on the prices, proving the stability of these tokens compared to more speculative financial asset classes.

In fact, in April 2020, the prices of Bitcoin, which was the most traded cryptocurrency, rose to 6, 314.79 US Dollars. And by 7 May 2020, the per-unit value of Bitcoin had risen to over 10000 US dollars. 

The volatility of the financial and currency markets have been exposed clearly. It is more so now given that the pandemic makes physical contact difficult. As a result, paper-based transactions need to be reduced and mobile tracking of transactions along with more anonymity and protection of data is crucial. It is no surprise then that people are falling for cryptocurrencies.

In fact, even international organizations like UNICEF are looking to apply cryptocurrencies more effectively to combat the problems of today. Recently, the organization announced that its Cryptofund will be investing 125 ETH in 8 startups from the developing world which will be using their technologies to mitigate hardships caused by the COVID-19 crisis.

Similarly, the greater popularity of Bitcoins is also not a surprise given the early bird advantage that it has over all the other cryptocurrencies. 

What and Why of Altcoins?

Despite the large share of the market being captured by Bitcoin, several other options for investment are appearing in the form of what are called altcoins. They had, in fact, started appearing just within two years from the launch of Bitcoin by Satoshi Nakamoto in 2009. 

Bitcoin has a large market cap of about $168,234,000,000 USD This implies not only a large volume of trade but also a large supply in circulation. This inevitably means that the major purpose of this coin is trading as an asset. There is very little other use for the token. The earlier altcoins generally used the Bitcoin codebase, but with passing time the altcoins started becoming increasingly more differentiated from the original Bitcoin code. They were modifications and improvements upon the initial technology. They have largely been used for diversifying the risk. However, it often goes beyond that, and they are being used for various specific utilities today. Experts suggest that greater adoption of altcoins soon will be largely dependent on their usability.  

The appearance of Ethereum saw the biggest revolution in this respect. They changed the way the decentralized networks and trust as the basis of financial and economic entities were perceived. Through Ethereum, not only the functionalities were made more efficient, but a whole new set of features were also added to the distributed ledger technology developed by Satoshi. It allowed the creation of decentralized organizations as well as smart contracts that set the rule for the transactions in this sphere and delineated how the decentralized technologies can be used for various other purposes than conducting anonymous financial transactions. This has now allowed the formation and use of decentralized technologies and unique tokens within varied sectors like messaging apps, supply chain management, marketing, and ride-sharing, to name a few.

This has also marked a steep increase in the number of altcoins produced within the crypto sector. At present, the total number of alternative coins stands at 5098 across the world. Expanse is the first stable fork of Ethereum and it tries to focus on the usability of a token and wants to improve on the existing tokens in this respect.

Expanse has a market cap of $588,278  and the difference between the tokens in circulation and the total tokens in supply is significant. This means that while the volume of trading is low, there are a significant proportion of the tokens which are being used within the ecosystem by community members carrying out transactions. This is evidence of greater usability of the Expanse tokens (EXP). Moreover the Expanse’s smaller market cap suggests a higher chance of growth compared to Bitcoin or any other token with a large market cap.

Why Should You Invest in Expanse?

  1. Expanse aims to create not only a simple commercial entity but a dedicated community based on the objectives of equitable access and control of the resources of the community. The community is based on a decentralized organization, making its functioning transparent and smooth. The resources are governed by a democratic, decentralized process. The community members are rewarded on the basis of participation and engagement.
  2. Expanse is listed on popular exchanges such as HitBTC and Bittrex, making the tokens highly liquid.
  3. The Expanse blockchain allows the creation of new decentralized organizations in any sector of the digital economy. This creates innumerable opportunities for the expansion and utilization of the token within this blockchain. 
  4. The techonology generated over the blockchain will also perform on the basis of smart contracts, making their operations equally transparent. 
  5. Finally, the community tries to create a sustainable model of resilience. While it is endowed with a fund that will last for 10 years, the company in the meantime tries to create models that will make it self-sufficient and sustainable in the longer run, instead of focusing on the immediate future.

Parting Words

All these factors contribute to greater usability and greater transparency which are key to the adoption of altcoins. Therefore, Expanse has the potential to become a large scale decentralized community of equal stakeholders and can be used for purposes beyond diversification of asset holdings which is the case for most digital currencies, including Bitcoin.

Introducing ExpFaucet

ExpFaucet is an android mobile app that pays users in Exp coins for viewing ads and, in the very near future, for completing tasks. ExpFaucet is one of the projects funded by Expanse Grants system. The app was built by our community member @SpeedRunner using React Native on frontend and Node.js on backend.

Why does Expanse need this app?

Because ExpFaucet can bring more attention and new users into the Exp network. Every new user needs to have an Expanse address to get paid, so as more users will use this app, more new wallets will be created and more transactions will be posted. The growth of the Exp network will happen as per Metcalfe’s law. Metcalfe’s law states the effect of a telecommunications network is proportional to the square of the number of connected users of the system (n2). More transactions on Expanse = more value for Expanse coin.

Besides transactions and network, every blockchain project has an exchange where anyone can buy or sell project coins. This matters in the long run. Low trading volume and low demand has a negative effect on the coin value. ExpFaucet will buy some Exp every day/week to pay this coins to users. In this way, it creates a buy demand and on the other hand some users that received this coins, will sell it. That’s how trading volume is created along with a gradual rise in demand.  

How does ExpFaucet work?

Every 30 minutes, users can claim some XP (which is an in-app token) for viewing ad. The value of XP is attached to that of USD, not Exp. If Expanse coins lose its value (rate goes down), users will get more coins and vice versa. After user creates a withdrawal request – he essentially “freezes” his XP tokens with the current Exp value. All withdrawals are processed every 3 days which makes for reducing tx fee and increasing rewards for users. This can be changed after more testing data emerges. The app also has a leader board.

Future Plans

After finishing tasks section and fixing all bugs, the economic model of this app will be changed.

Maybe a new token will be created on the Expanse blockchain. Every 2 weeks, the app will buy required amount of tokens to pay users, so even if all users will sell their rewards (such an event is very unlikely) token price will still be stable. Some similar apps in the market are using another strategy – they mint tokens instead of buying and that is the reason why app token value always goes down. We do not subscribe to this approach. Token will be traded on the Expex exchange. It will increase number of Expanse transactions and demand of Expex.

Transparency Reports

The way in which ETH and some other blockchain projects post transparency reports every quarter. This consolidates its reputation and helps the project stay honest and true to its founding principles. Every month, we will be posting a detailed report outlining ExpFaucet earnings, spends and developments. This will also include details like how much Exp was paid to users (meaning, how much Exp was bought on the exchange by the app), server costs and app earnings.

We believe that this app can be a great way to attract a huge community around it which eventually will boost the reputation of the expanse community and generate demand for the Exp tokens.

Expanse Fork

On Feb 26, 2020, a hard fork happened at # Blocknumber: 3,050,000 on the Expanse blockchain.

Basically GEXP 1.9.10 will introduce a handful of gas changes that will allow interoperability between EXP and zcash, etc and eth, as well as allowing for more access to privacy technology.

The Nebula Hardfork update brings Expanse up to date with Ethereum. The ETH Istanbul fork included six Ethereum Improvement Proposals (EIPs), specific code changes to the ethereum protocol, including EIPs 152, 1108, 1344, 1844, 2028 and 2200. This release also includes 10 months of GETH improvements into GEXP. Making GEXP more interoperable with ETH, ETC and the Zcash chains. If you use Mist or Luna, your binaries will update on their own. The public nodes for MEW and MyCrypto are already updated. And if you are using a ledger product it means you probably use mew or mycrypto to send your exp. We are in contact with our exchanges to get updated as well. Hardfork Block 3,050,000 Binaries https://github.com/expanse-org/go-expanse/releases/tag/v1.9.10

The hardfork mostly changes gas cost on certain calls that will allow for better scalability and cheaper privacy. When a member asked whether it will make easier to switch to POS and ETH Beacon Chain Validators, Christopher Franko responded by saying that it takes us one step closer.

Gamification in Health Apps – How Does it Help?

Jitendra Rathod, contributing newsletter editor, discusses the popularity of gamification to make health apps more fun to use and to increase user compliance. 

Do you count your daily steps in your smartwatch or fitness app? Do you drink water to grow a virtual plant? If you are doing something like this, then you’re already introduced to the gamification concept in health apps. 

Gamification is nothing but the use of games and simulations to help you make a few behavioral changes so that you become more conscious of a healthy lifestyle. The use of gamification in health apps has been on a surge because of its many benefits. 

How it helps

“An estimated 50% of patients with chronic diseases do not follow the prescribed treatment,” as told to Forbes by Dr. Bertalan Meskó, medical futurist and author of The Guide to the Future of Medicine: Technology and the Human Touch. 

Gamification has thus found its way in health apps offering a positive impression. 

Introducing health apps that are fun and engaging empowers a patient to take care of his/her health, often unknowingly. 

Patients become more cooperative with their primary caregivers because they become equal partners in their healthcare. In other words, patients have better self-knowledge and they are willing to help themselves making the job of the healthcare professional easy.

On the other hand, healthcare professionals should embrace the new normal and work along with the patients towards a healthy world. 

Here are a few examples of gamification in health apps

  1. Fitbit: If you have always dreaded the gym visit, then this gamified health app is for you. It counts every move you make, helps you set your fitness goals, and then sends you nudges to keep you motivated! 
  1. EveryMove: Similar to Fitbit, it not only counts your steps but gives you a competitive push by sharing your step counts with your friends. Even when you are socially distancing from one another, you can still keep your fitness motivation high with such a gamified app.
  1. Monster Guard: Developed by the Red Cross, this is a fun gamified app specially designed for children. The app aims to teach children what to do when there is an emergency like a fire in the building or an earthquake. Children are also rewarded with virtual medals when they complete a task allotted by the app.
  1. Lap band: Another popular child-focused gamified health app that is aimed towards raising healthy kids. The app keeps track of a child’s sleep hour, movement hours, and step counts.
  1. Wellthy Therapeutics: Diabetes is one of the major lifestyle diseases. This gamified app helps type 2 diabetic patient to manage her condition better by suggesting a health plan and keeping a track of how the patient is fairing. It engages the patients effectively for a healthy outcome. It offers fun challenges, keeps a track of lifestyle changes, offers expert coaching, etc.

Gamification in health apps is bringing in new dimensions to the healthcare system. However, the complete success of it will depend on how the patients and the healthcare community embrace it. 

The Allergy Finder app developed by Expanse seeks to help individuals suffering from food allergies through a gamified app that will help them track the foods they consume and alert them to potential food allergens in their meals. The common knowledge base will further help the community in making informed diet decisions. 

Introducing Quest – The first component of the Exp.Life Multiverse

The idea of life being a game is not new to us. But if all the statistics could be represented in the same way as in a game that could be viewed by other players and be used as a verifiable overview of the person, it would be both very useful and convenient. Every experience in the form of a photograph or a video or a blog post will result in gaining points. The more points one has, the better their chances of being an expert in their particular field. The players will be able to both play the game and do what they regularly do with greater motivation and energy. And to facilitate this much more enriching way of recording and sharing of our experiences by gamifying the entire process, Exp.life comes into the picture.

Exp.life looks to make the experiences of the people verifiable and more value-adding than they already are. It aims to gamify the lives of the players and enable them to record and upload their experiences in a way that makes it both genuine and authentic, which can be relied on by other people. The experiences that they wish to upload could have a permanent record, thanks to the application of the blockchain technology. Incentivizing is an important aspect of ensuring that there is increasing and continued participation of the involved parties.

Exp.life will actually transform the ‘game of life’ as we know it into a game-like structure which can be recorded and documented and will permit authentic sharing of experiences, while also rewarding the players for the same. It is bound to make people think twice before they upload anything on the internet and undertake challenges only if they actually are capable of completing them. Exp.life will certainly make this game a little more rewarding and worth playing. 

The first piece of the Exp.Life multiverse is Quest.

Quest is meant to be a blockchain-powered storytelling and task incentivization platform. It’s the first tool in a suite of tools that we will use to build out the Exp.Life multiverse. With Quest, adventures can be created, and “players” can find and consume user-generated quests to earn achievements, badges and, of course, loot! This tool will aim to attract storytellers, travelers, gamers and developers.

The Quest platform will support developers and “quest” creators to create engaging content to attract individuals. The platform is also envisaged as a micro employment platform where quests provide employment opportunities for people looking for a quick task to earn an honest wage during an uncertain economy.

Quest – Travel, Discover, Experience!

Stay tuned as we unravel more exciting updates about this grand vision.

Launch of the Allergy Finder App

Since the past couple of months, we have been working on an app that will help millions of individuals around the world suffering from food allergies. If you all remember, we had mentioned the development of this app fleetingly in the General channel of our Discord. 

We kept the team small – Omar overlooking the development closely with Farwah Aizaz managing operations. Muhammad Sohaib is the developer and Jitendra Rathod is creating content for the app and the blog posts. The project is the brainchild of Christopher Franko and he has been passionately involved in its development from Day 1. 

The Allergy Finder app is a community-powered, subscription-based app that will help users keep a record of their meals in a food journal and alert them of potential allergens in the foods they consume. Gamification plays a major role in the app and active participants will be rewarded with points that can be redeemed for products and services.The app will be available for Android as well as iOS and will be launched within the next two months. Development is proceeding at a frantic rate to stay true to the timeframe.

GEXP Update

GEXP v1.9.13 is a scheduled maintenance release, focusing on polishes and fixes. The highlight of the release is that we’ve finally merged support for dynamic state snapshots, something we’ve been working on for some time now. For now it’s not yet enabled by default, but we’re hoping for big things to be built on top of this.

This release also switches over to GEXP (the first version in the 1.14.x family that is stable for Ethereum), resulting in about 10% block processing speedup.

A summary of the features we’ve been working on:

  • Implement dynamic state snapshots (behind –snapshot for now) 
  • Bump the propagated transaction size limit to 128KB, up from 64KB 
  • Support running the HTTP and WebSocket RPC on the same port 
  • Support keeping the ethash caches and DAG forcefully in RAM 
  • Deprecate –testnet in favor of –ropsten, but keep it for now 
  • Add a newaccount command to Clef, mostly for tutorial purposes 
  • Expose individual metrics for every RPC method call type
  • Add support for exposing/exporting metrics from geth import runs 
  • Add debug_accountRange RPC API to iterate over the accounts 
  • Write up the documentation for the checkpoint-admin command 
  • Change DNS discovery record TTLs to saner values 
  • General cleanups in the ecies crypto package used by RLPx