https://pixabay.com/photos/bokeh-abstract-background-blur-21951/

With the parachain auctions confirmed as imminent, it looks like the Polkadot blockchain could soon have the spotlight more firmly on it. So what exactly sets this blockchain apart and how does it work?

The Network Architecture
The Polkadot network is a function rich blockchain which carries similarities and ambitions like the Ethereum network. This is no surprise since its creator is Dr Gavin Wood, the co-creator of Ethereum, and inventor of the smart contract language Solidity and the Parity Ethereum client.

The network launched in stages with the initial release of phase 1 on May 27th 2020 and phase…


© Tara Annison

Dogecoin ($DOGE) was created back in 2013 to poke fun at the growth in altcoins across the cryptocurrency market. It was literally created as a joke; using the shiba inu meme and everyone’s favourite font — comic sans — to best capture internet culture. It was never intended for mass adoption, real world use or a top 5 spot on CoinMarketCap.

Technically it’s a fork of a fork of bitcoin, so is built using a copy of the Luckycoin codebase which itself adapts the Litecoin codebase, which itself is a modification of the bitcoin codebase, and there’s a few notable…


Bitcoin’s scarcity is a frequently advertised benefit of the network and the asset’s future price potential but how can we be sure there will only ever be 21m bitcoins? In this piece I will break down how the Bitcoin network caps its supply, when the last bitcoins (or parts thereof) will be created and why the finite nature of the asset is so important.

Firstly let’s start with topic of where new bitcoins even come from, I dug into this in depth within my piece How does new cryptocurrency come into existence but a recap of this is that every…


Meme created by Tara Annison, and not yet monetized as a meme

With popularity and awareness of NFTs growing across the cryptosphere and beyond, there are now millions of pounds in NFT transactions happening every single day. This ranges from the average price of an NFT at just over $100 (although trending upwards from just $60 at the beginning of the month and at a 7 day average price of over $1,000) to the headline mega-sales such as Beeple’s digital artwork ‘Everydays’ selling for $69m, a 24bit pixel collectable alien selling for $7.57m and an NFT version of the Nyan Cat gif fetching $600k.

Understandably so, there are those who are sceptical…


Over the last few weeks both the crypto-sphere and the mainstream press have been abuzz with the latest blockchain craze — NFTs. But what even are they?

‘NFT’ stands for ‘Non-Fungible Token’ and they are non-fungible blockchain based assets which can have specific properties. Let’s break this down …

Fungibility vs Non-Fungibility

To understand the difference between a fungible and non-fungible asset, consider a pile of £1 coins and a pile of Pokemon cards. If you were asked to give someone £18, then you would select any 18 coins from the pile, confident in the knowledge that they each have the same value…


Taproot is an upgrade to the bitcoin protocol which has been in the pipeline since 2018 and aims to make more complex bitcoin transactions look indistinguishable from simpler ones.

This is needed because at the moment, if you create a transaction with more sophisticated redeem criteria than just “I own the private key associated with the output address” then the transaction is bigger (so costs more in transaction fees to be mined) and these redeem criteria are revealed when the output/s are spent.

Taproot therefore brings some additional privacy and will make transactions cheaper. To read a full breakdown of…


On January 19th, the Guardian put out a Spotify podcast on bitcoin entitled: Is bitcoin a scam? The interviewee Alex Hern is a Guardian journalist and has been a crypto writer since 2013.

Now it may be no surprise based on the title, but the podcasters take a decidedly bearish tone on the future and purpose of bitcoin. In this piece, the second in a multi part series, I explore more of their claims to understand whether it’s fake news or fact.

To read part one which explored their definition of money and the bitcoin mining process: https://www.linkedin.com/post/edit/6760131184832872450/

Who is Satoshi Nakamoto?

Hern discusses…


On January 19th, the Guardian put out a Spotify podcast on bitcoin entitled: Is bitcoin a scam? The interviewee Alex Hern is a Guardian journalist and has been a crypto writer since 2013.

Now it may be no surprise based on the title, but the podcasters take a decidedly bearish tone on the future and purpose of bitcoin. In this piece, the first in a multi part series, I’ll explore some of their claims to understand whether it’s fake news or fact.

Definition of Money

Hern states the properties of a currency as; scarcity, universal agreement that it is a currency, and the…


On Wednesday 20th January BitMEX Research alerted the world to a “double spend” on the bitcoin blockchain — essentially that someone had successfully spent the same bitcoins twice.


There are approximately 29 billion coins in circulation in the UK and the Royal Mint can make 850 new coins per minute. In the US between June 2019 and June 2020 5.1 billion notes, worth approximately $226.3 billion were printed — primarily $100 denomination notes.

Governments control the creation of money and can choose to print and mint as much as their economic policies demand. However history is full of examples where governments have abused this power or failed in their fiduciary duties, and the economic consequences of this have been clear. In 2019 Zimbabwe experienced hyperinflation of up to…

Tara Annison

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store