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IBM Watson uses the Blockchain in Singapore

ibm watson
IBM Watson project and the Bitcoin blockchain are two new technologies that might change the way we live and work in the near future.


Today tech giant IBM opened a new incubator with 5,000 computer technicians that aim at creating several prototypes by using the IBM Watson AI tools and the Bitcoin Blockchain.
This innovative environment is called the Watson Centre and it is situated in the Marina Bay in Singapore and in the IBM Garage, specialized in developing blockchain applications thanks to the IBM Open Standards tools within the Global Entrepreneur program that was launched back in 2010.
Randy Walker, CEO at IBM for the Asian zone, explained this project with these words:
“Watson and blockchain are two technologies that will rapidly change the way we live and work, and our clients in Asia Pacific are eager to lead the way in envisioning and creating that future.”

IBM Watson and blockchain


This new center comes thanks the study of the distributed ledger applications started back in 2015 when IBM joined the Hyperledger project.

Also, at the beginning of 2016, Chris Ferris, CTO at IBM, became the project leader of the aforesaid open-source blockchain project.

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Amelia Tomasicchio
La Tour Eiffel forse il simbolo piu rappresentativo di Parigi e della Francia

France Bitcoin Tests by the Central Bank

France Bitcoin tests have been revealed by the French Central Bank last week.

The Banque de France published a press release on Friday where it talks about its technology tests for  use in the management of SEPA Credit Identifiers.

According to the French central bank, one of the key participants in this project is the Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations, and the Paris-based startup called Labo Blockchain.

The project began in July 2016 and culminated in October with the creation of prototypes for creating and managing SEPA Credit Identifiers.

The central bank also explained how meetings were held with stakeholders as the project moved forward, indicating that more details about the project will be revealed in 2017.

France Bitcoin project and more central bank efforts

This is not the first time a  central bank test the distributed ledger.

A few months ago, in fact, central banks in Japan, Sweden and Singapore launched similar projects.

Also, earlier this month, the US Federal Reserve published its first major research paper on the ledger you can read here.


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Amelia Tomasicchio
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OCBC Blockchain: new tests on the ledger

In this article we will talk about the new OCBC Blockchain tests.

One of the major banks in Singapore, in fact, decided to test a distributed ledger payment service, with the goal to develop new commercial products created thanks to this revolutionary techonolgy.

OCBC started to use the ledger to send money between its operations in Singapore and Malaysia, as well as do transactions with the Bank of Singapore, one of its own private financial group.

To do so, the bank explained it worked with the BCS Information Services, a local financial brand that helped to do the OCBC Blockchain tests.

This is only the latest test in the Asia’s banking sector. Read more news about the blockchain tests and researches made in Asia previously this year.

OCBC senio vice president, Praveen Raina explained to Coindesk:

“We hope this will be a catalyst for more banks to adopt the blockchain technology so that, together, we can achieve efficiency and cost effectiveness while delivering more high-value financial services to our consumers.”

The bank announced its news on its official website, but currently the details of this announcement appear to have been removed.

Stay tuned for the next updates related to the blockchain and follow HolyTransaction on Facebook. 

Open your free digital wallet here to store your cryptocurrencies in a safe place.

Amelia Tomasicchio

IBM Blockchain to solve delivery issues

Singapore startup FreshTurf is working on a IBM Blockchain project to develop a network for solving issues related to delivery and storage lockers.

According to a press release, the two companies wants to create a network to track delivery shipments and storage lockers through the blockchain with the objective of providing a faster and safer service to the customers.

This way, in fact, users will be able to track their packages more easily thanks to a distributed ledger platform. 

This is not the first project for the IBM’s BlueMix garage, a wordwide network of innovators that provides a hub for startups and companies to test and study the blockchain.

The BlueMix is a part of IBM blockchain broader strategy for fintech applications.

The two companies commented in a press release that their goal is providing a system for clients to check the status of their packages in real time.

“Not only can the application of blockchain technology help provide visibility across the fulfilment chain, allowing users to track their parcel and delivery status from the convenience of their phone, it can help stakeholders to conduct shipping transactions in a highly secure and trusted environment.”

This distributed system, currently in development, works through the IBM blockchain.

It is not still clear if the companies will sell the technology for commercial use.

IBM Blockchain and Australian Postal Service

Blockchain has been used for several use cases, including package delivery.

In fact, Australian Postal Service released a report explaining how they could use the distributed ledger to track packages movements. Read more about Australian Postal Service new project by clicking here. 

Also, US Postal Service discussed its idea to create a new digital currency called PostCoin.

And this is not the first time IBM works on a blockchain-related project. Read more news about the IBM Blockchain here.

Open your free digital wallet here to store your cryptocurrencies in a safe place.

Amelia Tomasicchio

Why governments should embrace the Blockchain

William Mougayar, author of “The Business Blockchain” and member of the Ethereum Foundation, explains why governments should embrace the blockchain.
A few days ago we published an article where ICAP suggested on why banks must adopt digital currencies; today we want to talk about this new important opinion by Mougayar, who is convinced that the distributed ledger could improve government services.
Government services, in fact, are one of the most important and revolutionary use cases for this technology , so it is not a surprise that governments are working to develop their own blockchain-based applications.
During this year several cities and governmental institutions made their own plans for the ledger.
Singapore, Delaware, Estonia, Georgia, Ghana, Sweden, Switzerland, UK are just a few of many countries that developed a project related to the blockchain.
So, if your government is not working on the blockchain, they should, explained Mougayar.
As the blockchain is an early stage technology, it is easier to implement solutions at smaller scales.

How governments should embrace the Blockchain

What can your government do with the blockchain? There are four main areas:
  1. Verification: licenses, proofs of records, transactions, processes or events.
  2. Movement of assets. E.g. Transferring money from one person/entity to another.
  3. Ownerships: the blockchain is a perfect ledger to custody any asset.
  4. Blockchain can be used to give e-identities to its citizens, enabling a safer kind of voting.
So, government leaders should:
  1. Study the blockchain and explore its potential.
  2. Let people develop a blockchain strategy.
  3. Start experimenting with blockchain technology
  4. Develop new ideas to improve the quality of life of the citizens

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Bank of Tokyo works on a Blockchain project with Hitachi


Bank of Tokyo works on a blockchain project with Hitachi

Bank of Tokyo works on a blockchain project to manage electronic check together with tech giant Hitachi.
According to a press release, this proof of concept system aims at creating a digital platform to issue, transfer and collect e-checks.
Asiatic magazine Nikkei reports that in the next few days there will be further trials, and that the full version could be released in 2018.
Tech giant Hitachi announced:
“Using the system, BTMU issues and settles checks and some of Hitachi Group companies in Singapore receive the electronic check and deposit the funds. Through the PoC testing, Hitachi and BTMU will be able to identify issues from various perspectives such as technology, security, operation and legal perspectives and aim to realize new FinTech services including digitalization of checks.”
This project comes after a previous Bank of Tokyo Mitsubishi UFJ statement about its investment in the blockchain and about the project to release a new digital currency.
Also, a few months ago Hitachi announced the creation of new studies for fintech applications, as the company is a member of the Hyperledger project, the Linux Foundation program related to the distributed ledger.

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Bank of America to use the Blockchain to authenticate bank data

Bank of America and HSBC joined forces with the Singapore government’s IT and telecom agency to develop a project related to the blockchain.
Revealed today on Business Times, Bank of America, HSBC and the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore have started to create a blockchain application within the Hyperledger system.
The project’s the goal is replicating the letter of credit transaction process among banks, exporters and importers and they aim at understanding how the distributed ledger could place trust between parties.
In fact, usually parties need to rely on banks to issue and recognize documents for facilitating trade.

Bank of America to use the Blockchain

According to International Business Times, the proof-of-concept project is composed by a seven-step process that will show how a blockchain can be used to authenticate data.
“Many people are talking about the theory of blockchain, but for the first time we can start to see how this technology might be used to solve the real world challenges our customers face,” said Vive Ramachandran, global head of product for HSBC trade finance business.
This is not the only project to be launched, in fact, Bank of America and IDA are already working on similar goals related to the blockchain.

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5 reasons Bitcoin price is rising


Reasons Bitcoin Price is rising

The bitcoin price keeps rising and it is reaching the value of $700, growing more than 20% during the weekend.
Today, in fact, the Bitcoin price is $695, according to Coindesk and it seems it doesn’t want to turn back.
Experts are trying to provide several reasons for this rise, including the Chinese Domain and the halving of miners rewards.
Below you can read the 5 reasons Bitcoin price is rising so fast:

Halving of Rewards

In July it will take place the event of the halving of the miners rewards: the mining process, in fact, will be rewarded 12.5 BTC per block, instead of the previous amount of 25 BTC.
This process called halving is aimed at preventing a digital currency inflation by reducing the amount of new currency created over time, until it reaches it maximum amount of 21 million bitcoin ever created.

More interests in the Blockchain

Another reason could be the growing interest in the Blockchain by several worldwide companies such as Microsoft, IBM and more.
As the interest in the different applications of the distributed ledger is growing, more and more people start to approach bitcoin too.

Chinese Domain

As we tried to explain into this blog post, one of the possible reasons of the rise of the Bitcoin Price is the increase of the Chinese domain.
In fact, its price in CNY on the local exchange is growing up quickly, reaching more than the current bitcoin price.
Joe Lee, founder at the trading platform called Magnr, explained:
“Capital flight continues as the IMF (International Monetary Fund) is now signalling warnings at the increasing default risk against China’s corporate debt. China’s economy is changing rapidly and debt fueled growth can only be sustained for so long.”

FIAT Currencies Flow

Another reason why the Bitcoin price is growing could be a fiat currencies flow.
This is the point of view of Chris Burniske, who explained:
“What this implies to me is we have lots of new fiat money flowing into bitcoin, and bitcoin’s price action is not being driven by people swapping out of ether, which we’ve often seen before.”

UK out of Europe

Other bitcoin experts explained that another possible reason could be the fear that the UK could leave the UE.
A recent survey showed that 52% want this split, while 33% prefer that it remains.
This is the same thing happened when it appeared that Greece would leave the European Union: for this reason the bitcoin price hit about $300.

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Amelia Tomasicchio

Imagine a Bitcoin Valley…!

(Politico) The popular recipe for creating the “next” Silicon Valley goes something like this:
  • Build a big, beautiful, fully equipped technology park;
  • Mix in R&D labs and university centers;
  • Provide incentives to attract scientists, firms and users;
  • Interconnect the industry through consortia and specialized suppliers;
  • Protect intellectual property and tech transfer; and,
  • Establish a favorable business environment and regulations.

Except … this approach to innovation clusters hasn’t really worked. Some have even dismissed
these government-driven efforts as “modern-day snake oil.” Yet
policymakers are always searching for the next Silicon Valley because of
the critical link between tech innovation, economic growth and social

Previous efforts at such clusters failed
for a variety of reasons, but one big reason is that government efforts
alone simply don’t draw people. That’s why a recent crop of experiments
has focused more on building entrepreneurial communities, urban hubs and districts, and hackerspaces. Still, we’re “splitting the logic” on how to create an innovation ecosystem, according to MIT expert Fiona Murray in Technology Review:
We’re either going top-down by focusing primarily on
infrastructure—plunking down an office park next to a university—or
bottom-up by focusing on just the networks. None of these efforts
successfully pursue both paths at once, with government, academia and
entrepreneurial communities proceeding together in lockstep—as was the
case in the development of Silicon Valley.  

But policymakers shouldn’t be trying to copy Silicon
Valley. Instead, they should be figuring out what domain is (or could
be) specific to their region—and then removing the regulatory hurdles
for that particular domain. Because we don’t want 50 Silicon Valleys; we
want 50 different variations of Silicon Valley, all unique from each other and all focusing on different domains.

Imagine a Bitcoin Valley, for instance, where some country fully
legalizes cryptocurrencies for all financial functions. Or a Drone
Valley, where a particular region removes all legal barriers to flying
unmanned aerial vehicles locally. A Driverless Car Valley in a city that
allows experimentation with different autonomous car designs,
redesigned roadways and safety laws. A Stem Cell Valley. And so on.

a key difference from the if-you-build-it-they-will-come argument of
yore. Here, the focus is more on driving regulatory competition between
city, state and national governments. There are many new categories of
innovation out there and entrepreneurs eager to go after opportunities
within each of them. Rethinking the regulatory barriers in specific
industries would better draw the startups, researchers and divisions of
big companies that want to innovate in the vanguard of a particular
domain—while also exploring and addressing many of the difficult
regulatory issues along the way.
Why this approach? Compared with
previous innovation-cluster efforts where governments contrived to do
something unnatural, this proposal flows from what governments naturally
do best: create, or rather, relax laws.
advantage of this approach is that it’s a way for clusters to
differentiate from each other and successfully compete for resources.
Think of it as a sort of “global arbitrage” around permissionless innovation—the
freedom to create new technologies without having to ask the powers
that be for their blessing. Entrepreneurs can take advantage of the
difference between opportunities in different regions, where innovation
in a particular domain of interest may be restricted in one region,
allowed and encouraged in another, or completely legal in still another.
For example, the laws and guidelines for using drones or taxing bitcoin already vary widely across the globe, just as they do for ride-sharing services across different cities in the United States.
the biggest advantage of the 50-different-Silicon Valleys approach
isn’t just in what it affords isolated regions or entrepreneurs—it’s in
accelerating innovation everywhere. Removing regulations across
different regions allows multiple innovation categories to advance
together at once, in parallel, without being bottlenecked by time or
So what are the risks? Well, there’s a real possibility
that advanced regions will essentially outsource or “regulate away”
their own risk at the expense of less advanced ones. To get ahead,
poorer countries may become more tempted to take on the very things
wealthier countries are fencing out of their borders. But as long as the
innovations aren’t life-threatening—and many of the restricted domains
aren’t (the restrictions are often protecting incumbent interests)—a
model like this one provides a much faster and more feasible way for
developing regions to catch up. Especially when you consider the
advantage that previous innovation clusters didn’t have: mobile.

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Bitcoin can stabilise volatile market in India

(TimesOfIndia) At a time when the country has suffered devaluation of rupee against
dollar, inflation and fuel price volatility in exchange market, two
students of Fellow Programme in Management (FPM) at Indian Institute of
Management, Indore (IIM-I) have rekindled hopes to address the problems
through introduction of ‘Bit Coin’ currency system.

Bitcoin is
a crypto currency which currently has market capitalisation of $8.1
billion. The recognition is mainly because of its introduction during
financial crisis, when trust on government and policy makers was low. It
is an alternative to card networks and money transfer system.

Khadija Vakeel and Nitya Saxena of IIM-I in their study found out that
at a time, when the country is struggling to achieve a respectable
position on matters of financial inclusion, Bit Coin can be a game

Bitcoin can also lead to a new industry and challenge
for IT youths and can address the problem of brain drain. While
Singapore is pro bit coin, China stands against it. India is yet to take
a side. Users having Bit Coin can enter into virtual goods and services
exchange. The study states that inflation is simply a rise in prices
over a period of time, which is generally the result of the devaluation
of currency.

This is a function of supply and demand. Given the
fact that the supply of bit coins is fixed at a certain amount, unlike
fiat money, the only way for inflation to get out of control is for
demand to disappear.

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