How I Turned 1 ETH Into 1.5 ETH in One Swap

It started with a tip in a tweet

It started with a tip in a tweet

Photo by Alvin Lenin on Unsplash

I remember reading about Ethereum 2.0 staking when it was announced last year. You needed 32 ETH, which is nearly $64k in today’s money, to do it — well out of reach for me, even then when ETH was only $700 or whatever it was at the time.

Leave it to the community to come up with solutions, though. Ankr, Kraken, and others offered the opportunity to stake ETH quantities as little as 0.1. This was perfect for me — I promptly staked my 1 ETH with Ankr, and I was given an ankrETH in return.

The cool thing about staking with Ankr is that the rewards accumulate, and you redeem your staked ETH plus the rewards when you exchange the ankrETH back to Ankr after the Ethereum 2.0 locking phase is over. It also means you can exchange the token, so if I suddenly started feeling bad about staking ETH, I’m not locked in the same way as if I’d done it officially with Ethereum. This proved to a really, really good thing for me.

Earlier this week, I was scrolling through my Twitter feed. I saw this message from Guarda Wallet, a company that I’ve written about previously for staking both Harmony ONE and Cardano ADA tokens:https://adamprescott.wordpress.com/media/c149701349a3b3487341b93af04ada8bSource: Twitter

I was immediately curious — I hopped over to Uniswap and checked the exchange rate. Sure enough, 1 ETH was trading for 1.60 GETH. Wow — mind blown. It felt a little too good to be true, and I wanted to do a little more research before committing. So, I got to work.

You can see step 1 of my research on the tweet itself. I asked Guarda why the value of GETH was so low compared to ETH, and they promptly fired back a 5-tweet reply explaining the history of GETH and why the market varies, along with a note about wanting to make their customers aware when a rare opportunity presents itself.https://adamprescott.wordpress.com/media/928f8b1f8e62c9a56d1ea68895f758f7Source: Twitter

Okay, this was still sounding pretty good. I looked up GETH on both CoinMarketCap and CoinGecko, and it all felt very suspicious. It was only a part of 5 watchlists on CMC, and it had just 17 likes on CG. The trading volume was also insanely low.

So, the next thing I did was to open a support ticket through my Guarda wallet. In the ticket, I raised the potential of a GETH scam that they were promoting via their Twitter account and asked if they could confirm the GETH token’s contract address, which isn’t found anywhere in the Guarda documentation.

Once again, I received a prompt response from the Guarda team along with the GETH token contract address:

Source: guarda.freshdesk.com

Alright then. At this point, I decided to take the plunge. I went over to SnowSwap, where I had staked my ankrETH, and withdrew from their Eth2 liquidity pool. I checked exchange rates and found that WETH had a more favorable GETH exchange rate on Uniswap, so I elected to withdraw that instead of the ankrETH that I had originally deposited.

With WETH in-wallet, I headed to Uniswap and swapped it to GETH. Magically, the 1 ETH that I started with had been transformed into 1.47 GETH.

I logged into Guarda and imported my Ethereum wallet. Without any additional steps, the GETH was showing as staked ETH:

Source: Guarda Wallet

Additionally, as you can see in the screenshot, the next reward distribution will occur on May 1, 2021. That’s part of the deal when you stake with Guarda — they distribute rewards they earn to GETH holders each month.

The final step in my journey was to visit Guarda’s Telegram community to ask if need to do anything else to receive rewards. Once again, my question was answered promptly — and I was assured that I didn’t need to do anything else. I just need to hold onto my GETH to collect rewards.


I was already enjoying Guarda for staking ONE, ADA, and ATOM tokens, and I feel like I just hit the lottery with this swap. At the time I’m writing this, it looks like GETH has regained a lot of its value against ETH, and the exchange rate is not nearly as favorable. Still, getting an 18% bonus on your ETH isn’t too shabby…

Source: Uniswap

Now that I’m a GETH holder, it’s great to see that the value has rebounded & recovered. I feel even better about making the move! If you’re looking to make a similar move, keep an eye on the price of GETH at CoinGecko. If Ethereum starts to surge, I wouldn’t be surprised to see the GETH drop price again, and that’s your chance to make the same move.

Thanks for taking the time to read about my experience. All the usual disclaimers apply. Be careful about making swaps on and know what you’re doing. When you hold GETH, you aren’t locked in. You can trade it away on Uniswap at any point. But, if you keep holding it, you’ll receive monthly rewards and be able to exchange it 1:1 when the next phase of Ethereum 2.0 is reached.


This story was originally published on This Crypto Life on April 9, 2021.

Setup & Run a Theta Edge Node and Start Earning TFUEL in 5 Minutes

No effort, no minimums

No effort, no minimums

Photo by Kurt Cotoaga on Unsplash

Theta Network has been very hot in the cryptocurrency & blockchain space recently. Its two tokens, THETA and TFUEL, both experienced explosive growth in March. THETA went from $3 to an all-time high of $14, earning itself a spot as a top-10 token by market cap. Similarly, TFUEL — the gas token of the Theta blockchain — grew from $0.09 to its peak value, $0.54.

Source: TFUEL on CoinMarketCap

The cool thing about TFUEL is that you can earn it simply by watching Theta.tv, a streaming service that has a similar look & feel to Twitch. TFUEL earned this way can be used to tip streamers, subscribe, and purchase rewards. You can’t withdraw this TFUEL, though, or exchange it for other tokens. If you’re curious about Theta at all, start there. Sign up and give it a shot. (Note that the sign-up link is a referral; it’s okay to work around that if you prefer.)

The Theta Edge Node

If you’re like me, when you earn by streaming, your first thought is, “Oh! I should keep this thing going 24/7 to earn more free TFUEL.” You can definitely do that, but there’s a better way — a way that doesn’t require you to actually stream content, and you’ll earn rewards in a wallet where you can send & receive them as you see fit: the Theta Edge Node.

Here’s Theta’s documentation for setting up an Edge Node: https://docs.thetatoken.org/docs/setup-theta-edge-node.

Source: Theta Edge Node running on my computer

Getting going is super easy; just download, install, and run. The only configuration is to enter your Theta wallet address, which will probably require you to do the extra step of creating the wallet if you don’t already have one.

Walkthrough

Here’s the breakdown of exactly what to do, starting from scratch:

  1. Create a Theta wallet: https://wallet.thetatoken.org/create
  2. Download the Windows or macOS client: https://docs.thetatoken.org/docs/setup-theta-edge-node
  3. Install the client
  4. Run the client
  5. Enter your wallet address from step 1

And that, my friends, is it! By default, the client will look for Cache and Compute jobs. Edge Cache works the same as what you experience while earning from Theta.tv by receiving streaming content and re-broadcasting it to other users. Edge Compute is more interesting, in my opinion, and is intended to be a “generic computing platform.” Here’s an excerpt from the Edge Node docs:

Such a platform allows Task Initiators to post tasks for Edge Nodes to download and solve. Task initiators also register the tasks and provide the TFuel rewards for each task on the blockchain through smart contracts. Tasks can be anything ranging from solving a set of equations, finding novel protein structures to help fight COVID-19, transcoding a video, to thousands of other applications that can leverage a network of distributed edge computing devices.

While getting started with Edge Compute, my immediate concern was how many resources it would consume. I was thinking of running the Edge Node on a part-time gaming PC that I use for mining, and I didn’t want Edge competing for GPU resources. The Theta documentation says this about its Folding@Home initiative:

Since bandwidth sharing utilizes minimal CPU and GPU resources, it means that Edge Nodes could also perform compute intensive tasks such as determining which drug designs could be effective COVID-19 antivirals.

So, this validates that Edge Compute is looking to take advantage of both idle CPU and GPU resources. I’m running it on my mining PC, and it hasn’t impacted hash rates so far — but I’m keeping any on it. (It also hasn’t earned very impressively, but that’s ok given that I don’t want it competing for those resources.)


Conclusion

Theta Network and Theta.tv are doing some really cool things. They’ve partnered with big names like Sony and Lionsgate, and they have co-founders from Twitch and YouTube as advisors.

The growth in value of THETA and TFUEL has been incredible, and there’s no reason to expect that they’ll stop growing — although certainly not at the same parabolic rate.

Source: https://www.thetatoken.org/

Running a Theta Edge Node gives users an effortless way to start earning TFUEL with idle bandwidth and computing resources, and it will only get better with time. Theta’s Mainnet 3.0 release is right around the corner, and it promises improvements for Edge Node users.


This story was originally published on This Crypto Life on April 7, 2021.

The Mutually-Beneficial Future of Reader-Incentivized Media

Decrypt’s Reader Token is a brilliant evolution that the news industry would do well to embrace

Decrypt’s Reader Token is a brilliant evolution that the news industry would do well to embrace

Photo by Mike Kenneally on Unsplash

Last month, I wrote an article about Brave’s Basic Attention Token and the possibilities its model holds for big media outlets like the New York Times and Washington Post. Today these companies use annoying paywalls to encourage readers to subscribe. They broadcast headlines to news aggregators, but when you click, you can’t read the article until you subscribe.

The reason behind the paywalls makes sense. Writers and their employers need to be paid, and, generally, the internet of yore provides two ways for generating revenue: ads and subscriptions. You either monetize your traffic, so advertisers are willing to pay you or collect money from users directly in place of the ads.

There’s a problem with both of those models, though. In both cases, the reader/customer/consumer is the essential resource, and they’re completely cut out of the revenue stream. Rather than valuing and rewarding their choice and attention, media companies focus solely on profit. Traditional media is struggling because there’s so much choice, and people will often gravitate toward high-quality free options rather than pay or put up with ads.

This is where the Basic Attention Token, or BAT, is such a novel idea. Essentially, advertisers pay Brave, and Brave passes a portion of the proceeds to its users, who opt-in as willing participants in the Brave Rewards program. They’re happy to view ads because it benefits them. Instead of installing ad-blockers, Brave’s users are cranking their “ads per hour” setting to the max!

A similar concept has been implemented by the cryptocurrency-focused online magazine Decrypt. Two weeks ago, they unveiled the Decrypt Reader Token.


It’s similar in concept to BAT. Users are rewarded with DCPT for reading, sharing, and reacting to articles in the Decrypt app. Users are limited to earning just 20 tokens per day. The tokens have no monetary value, and they can’t be withdrawn. I’m not sure Decrypt knows exactly what the tokens will be used for, but they have a rewards store where DCPT can be exchanged for limited-edition NFTs and presumably things like swag in the future.

The concept is brilliant for many reasons.

First and foremost, it’s a huge incentive for readers. I can earn up to 3 tokens for every article I read. I can earn 2 more by sharing the article and another by reacting to it.

Source: https://decrypt.co/61733/decrypt-launches-reader-rewards-token-dcpt

I can only earn 20 tokens per day, too, which is the perfect segue into the second benefit: it makes older articles more valuable. In addition to checking in on the latest headlines, I’m more likely to browse through older articles searching for interesting content that will earn me more tokens.

Reacting to an article earns 1 DCPT, so guess what I do to every article I read? These reactions provide valuable feedback to Decrypt, which will help them write more content that their readers like in the future.

The fourth benefit belongs to advertisers. Filecoin is sponsoring “season 1” of the reader token. I see the Filecoin logo several times a day as I’m in & out of the app. That’s great exposure for Filecoin!


I absolutely love what Decrypt has done, and I think this represents the future of media revenue. Treat users and readers as people, and reward them for their time. It can come in many ways. You can reward them with actual currency, like Brave’s BAT. Alternatively, allow them to earn a custom token, like Decrypt’s Reader Token, which can later be redeemed for swag that turns loyal readers into walking billboards for your brand.

It’s a literal win-win because you — the company — are earning revenue from advertisers at the same time you’re growing your reader base and rewarding users for their time and loyalty. More loyal readers mean more advertising dollars, leading to more/better rewards, so the cycle goes.

And consider the alternative. You keep showing ads or charging a subscription fee with no benefit to your users. How will you compete when an incentivized challenger rises? Why would you pick the browser that doesn’t pay you? Why would you read news from the source that charges a subscription instead of offering you rewards?

The established players with traditional models have an edge now, but the competition is closing the gap, and if the big boys of today can’t evolve, they’ll be left behind.


This story was originally published on This Crypto Life on April 5, 2021.