Alt Convention Conference Invites Blockchain, FinTech and Bitcoin Industry to Georgia

Bitcoin Magazine
Alt Convention Conference Invites Blockchain, FinTech and Bitcoin Industry to Georgia

Bitcoin Press Release: With 350 tickets already sold, Alt Convention features Andreas M. Antonopoulos, Jon Matonis, and many more big names in Bitcoin, finance and government sectors as speakers. Alt Convention is geared towards anyone with an interest in emerging financial technologies, with discounted early bird tickets and substantial sponsorship opportunities available.

Alt Convention, a three-day business, finance, and technology conference focusing on FinTech innovation will be held from October 8-10, 2015, in the beautiful resort city of Batumi, Georgia. Ranked 15th out of 189 countries for ease of doing business, Georgia boasts a stable, growing economy with forward-thinking leadership, in the heart of an emerging market that is rapidly becoming a hub for developers and entrepreneurs.

“Because of our own first-hand insight into the business, IT, and FinTech climate in Georgia, we decided to host Alt Convention. The legislative and banking climate, and growth opportunities in this emerging market are staggering,” said David Ruebush, CEO, Global Bitbillions Group Incorporated.

The early speakers list so far includes Andreas M. Antonopoulos, Bitcoin evangelist, author and entrepreneur; Charles Hoskinson, developer and mathematician; Jonas Kjellberg, co-creator of Skype and co-founder of Gear Up Ventures; Adam Krellenstein and Evan Wagner of Counterparty; Jon Matonis, Founding Board Member of the Bitcoin Foundation and Chief Forex Dealer at VISA; Pamela Morgan of Empowered Law and Third Key Solutions; Uri Levine, co-creator of Waze; Tatiana Moroz of Tatiana Coin and Crypto Media Hub, and Lilia Vershinina of Kraken, to name a few. Many more speakers are listed on the Alt Convention website; additional speakers will be added in the upcoming months.

Geared toward business owners, innovators, entrepreneurs, developers, government officials, venture capitalists, and anyone else with an interest in new financial technologies, the event will feature hands-on workshops, conference sessions, round-table discussions, panels, an exhibit hall, networking events, cultural performances, and a hackathon.

Alt Convention events will address ways that Bitcoin, next-generation blockchain, and other FinTech developments can disrupt various sectors such as law and finance, while exploring growth opportunities around the world, especially in emerging markets like Asia and Eastern Europe. Presentation and discussion topics will appeal to seasoned programmers, longtime enthusiasts, and those new to digital currencies. An early list of introductory topics promises to address blockchain basics, mining, security, smart contracts, proof of stake, distributed storage, an Ethereum overview, and an introduction to Bitcoin 2.0 platforms.

Ruebush went on to state,

“While my company has been quietly developing our own blockchain project, I have spent the past year cultivating relationships with government officials and banks in Georgia. I can tell you there is a very good reason businesses such as BitFury and others are already investing heavily in this emerging market.”

With 350+ tickets already sold in advance of its initial major marketing push, Alt Convention expects to draw over 2500 attendees. Several government officials from the region including representatives from the Georgian and Ajara Ministries of Finance and Economy will be in attendance along with CEOs from several regional banks.

A growing list of partnerships for the conference includes Kraken, Counterparty, Bitnation, Digital Money Times, Bitcoin Magazine, yBitcoin,, 247CryptoNews, and Bitclub Network. A wide range of sponsorship opportunities is still available.

Tickets for Alt Convention are now being sold on the event website and may be purchased using bitcoin or a major credit card. Discounted tickets will be offered until June 25, 2015.

Updates and further information will be posted on the Alt website. For media and partnership inquiries, please contact Tatiana Moroz at or (917) 832-2014, or visit


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mBit Bitcoin Casino Announces World Class VIP Program

Bitcoin Press Release: MBit casino launches a lucrative VIP program and expands its offerings for Bitcoin gamers worldwide.

Already one of the biggest Bitcoin casinos in the world, mBit has announced its plans to continue its aggressive expansion in the online casino world with a redesigned VIP program, new games and the addition of a sportsbook.

The new VIP program is set to become a very lucrative one. Regular players will be rewarded with prizes such as MacBooks, new Bose headsets, Bitcoin hardware wallets, GoPro 4 Silvers, and even an all-expenses paid holiday to the Maldives.

Players will be informed when they qualify as a VIP and will receive bi-weekly updates on their VIP status from a VIP hostess who is available 7 days a week for questions and special offers. An exclusive VIP lottery will be implemented where all VIP members can enroll to win any of the prizes from the prize collection at random.

The upcoming sportsbook will have features over the competition, and offer members new ways to play. mBit’s objective is to offer the full menu to Bitcoin gamblers by creating a centralized platform for all Bitcoin gaming needs. Their user-friendly interface is already top-of-the-class and registration and deposits are instant. Games and live dealers load virtually instantly and the customer support team is always on standby to quickly assist players with their needs.

These are exciting times for mBit Casino and all its members. Already providing 24/7 live chat and 400 BTC available in slots jackpots, mBit delivers the strongest case as to why they are one of players’ favorite Bitcoin casinos. mBit already holds the world record for the largest ever Bitcoin payout of 260 BTC or approximately $60,000 USD and has attracted low, medium and high stakes players from every background.

mBit Casino strives to stay ahead of the curve by offering an industry leading initial deposit bonus of 110% up to 1 BTC. With live dealer games like blackjack and roulette supplemented with an array of slots games from Betsoft, Play’n’Go, Takitso, Ezugi, Betgames, Gameart and Endorphina and even video poker, mBit is well known as a provider of premium content and one of the biggest online casinos.

For more information, feel free to visit mBit Casino at:

Media Contact:

Name: Linda Murphy


City and Country location: Willemstad, Curaçao


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Blockstream Moves Ahead with Sidechain Elements, the First Implementation of Sidechains

The authors of the much-discussed Bitcoin Sidechains paper “Enabling Blockchain Innovations with Pegged Sidechains,” released in October, formed the company Blockstream to implement sidechains and accelerate innovation in digital currencies. In November, Blockstream closed a $21 million seed funding round with nearly 40 high-profile investors.

The Bitcoin Sidechains paper envisages an ecosystem of “sidechains” separate from the main Bitcoin blockchain but interoperable with it by means of two-way pegs, allowing for the transfer of assets between sidechains and the main blockchain. A sidechain can implement changes from Bitcoin Core, for example, more powerful scripting features or more watertight privacy. According to Blockstream, sidechains enable innovators to safely develop new applications without jeopardizing Bitcoin’s core code and putting billions of dollars worth of digital currency at risk.

For a readable explanation of sidechains, see “A simple explanation of Bitcoin ‘Sidechains,” by Richard Gendal Brown, executive architect for banking innovation at IBM UK. Despite the considerable interest in sidechains, the enthusiasm of developers has been so far dampened by the lack of actual implementations of sidechains.

Now Blockstream has announced Sidechain Elements, a sidechain development framework with open source code and developer sidechains.

“We’re excited to announce the release of Sidechain Elements,” says Adam Back, co-founder and president of Blockstream. “Sidechains extend Bitcoin functionality through interoperable blockchain networks and today’s open source release includes an experimental sidechain that has a number of new working capabilities. With the release of Sidechain Elements, Blockstream is moving this effort into the community.”

Sidechain Elements includes functioning code and a testing environment for working with sidechains with several components: the core network software to build an initial testing sidechain, eight new features not currently supported by Bitcoin, a basic wallet and the code for moving coins between blockchains.

Blockstream’s CTO and Bitcoin Core developer Gregory Maxwell explains Sidechain Elements in a video on the Blockstream website.

As open-source, protocol-level technology, developers can use Sidechain Elements to extend the functionality of Bitcoin and explore new applications of the Blockchain. “Although both are ultimately needed, sidechains are true innovation and value add in contrast to merely increasing the block size and kicking a larger can,” said early Bitcoin investor Trace Mayer.

“We’re inviting developers to work with us, to test and use the code for their projects, and to share their proposals and code for additional capabilities,” says Back. The new features not currently supported by Bitcoin Core include Confidential Transactions, Basic Asset Issuance, Relative Lock Time and several others.

One of the most powerful new features being explored in Elements is Confidential Transactions, a cryptographic tool to improve the privacy and security of Bitcoin. This feature keeps the amounts transferred visible only to participants in the transaction (and those they designate). A detailed explanation of Confidential Transactions by Maxwell is available here.

With Basic Asset Issuance, users can issue their own assets via newly created units that represent fungible ownership of an underlying asset type. These tokens can theoretically represent any asset including vouchers, coupons, currencies, deposits, bonds, shares, etc.

With Relative Lock Time, the consensus-enforced semantics of the sequence number field is modified to enable a signed transaction input to remain invalid for a defined period of time after confirmation of its corresponding output, for the purpose of supporting consensus-enforced transaction replacement features. This feature is also useful for efficient implementation of blockchain secured off-chain layers like the Lightning Network, where related transactions can take place instantly on “micropayment channels” off-chain, and only the final settlement is processed by the blockchain.

Blockstream will seek to provide Sidechain Elements as a base for the nearly 30 blockchain innovation initiatives that have been announced by major financial institutions in the past few months. Since the deployment of sidechains interoperable with Bitcoin requires the implementation of suitable tweaks to Bitcoin Core, Blockstream is working to draft a Bitcoin Improvement Proposal for a fully decentralized two-way peg and merge-mined sidechains.

Once fully implemented, sidechains will probably have a disruptive impact on the Bitcoin ecosystem. For example, it seems likely that the useful features of some altcoins, such as improved scripting, transaction times and privacy, could be replicated in a sidechain without losing interoperability with Bitcoin.


Image via Blockstream.

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shapeshiftapp, a well-known digital currency exchange, has just announced that the trading platform is available on the IOS app store, making it the first mobile exchange app ever permitted on the app store.

Along with Apple’s announcement of iOS 9, users will be able to trade bitcoin with monero, counterparty, dash, and other altcoins from their phones.

“Since inception, ShapeShift has changed what is expected of altcoin exchanges,” said Founder and CEO Erik Voorhees in a press release. “Having a presence on mobile is a crucial step in our roadmap for delivering the most
frictionless experience possible while working at the speed of digital currency.”

“Shapeshift mobile iOS app is the next step towards instant accessibility of crypto – no matter where you are,” said Lisa Cheng, founder of Vanbex.

Unlike traditional exchanges, users can trade without an account or email address. Arguing that the increased privacy is good for consumer protection, (no data in the hands of a third party) users also have access to shifting one coin or digital asset to another, receiving a payment shortly after deposit.

“Most exchanges hold customer funds and extract personal information, which is an archaic and insecure model,” said Voorhees. “Mt. Gox was a teachable moment for everyone in the Bitcoin community, and ShapeShift has innovated these problems out of the picture. We are both faster and more secure. This is real consumer protection – no funds or sensitive information is stored on our servers, nor on the user’s phone in case it is damaged, destroyed or stolen. Digital currency has brought to humanity a more secure infrastructure, and so we build in that spirit.”



Over the past few months, ShapeShift has partnered with a number of companies to expand their service, including, an escrow service that allows customers to purchase items on Amazon for a discount by using digital currency, and Vaultoro, a platform that allows users to trade digital currency for bullion.

Historically, Apple has been rather anti-digital currency on the app store, having a time period of several months in which Bitcoin wallets weren’t even allowed. Since then, Apple has allowed for wallets, and now the first-ever exchange.

Despite the supposed change of heart, Apple Pay is still charging forward without Bitcoin, and it doesn’t look like it will look to adopt it or its technology anytime soon. ShapeShift’s mobile app might mark a change in app store policy in which more digital currency exchanges will be allowed to launch mobile applications on the IOS platform.

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