ATTENTION!!! SD³ project was directly affected by Russian invasion in Ukraine on February 24, 2022. Until further notice, we are forced to put a freeze on all our operations. Stay tuned for updates.

Author MasterSherpa

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

On this day 2 years ago we were part of the crew that climbed to the top of Africa, the Uhuru Peak of the Mt.Kilimanjaro. Due to 3 minor mistakes on our own part, a climb that was supposed to be just a simple hike to the top turned out to be a real challenge with a direct threat to our lives at the altitude of close to 20 000 ft.

Thanks to Big Elias (Elias Massawe), the most trusted guide and a sherpa with decades of experience, we were able to cope with the panic and managed to ignite the impossible sparks of strength & motivation to find our way back to safety. We are indefinitely grateful to Elias for his decisive actions and strength of character on this day. 

If Big Elias were to live his life here in North America, his resilience and leadership skills would have yielded him a high-ranking executive position. But Elias was born, educated and lived all his life in Tanzania, Africa where his work as a professional guide and as a sherpa provided means for his family.

Unfortunately, over the years, Elias has developed Achilles Tendinitis condition in his left foot to the point that it is hard for him to walk. In 2017, at the age of 44 Elias was forced to end his  17-year long career as a Guide and a Sherpa. In his track record, Elias has many achievements, including helping Angela Vorob’eva to set a Guinness World Record by becoming the oldest woman to climb to the top of Mt.Kilimanjaro at the age of 86. Elias himself has climbed to the top of the mountain well over 100 times, helping others achieve their goals. But today (!) Elias is asking for help.

Due to his medical condition, he is no longer able to take any crews to the top of Kili and needs to find an alternative way to feed his wife, 3 kids, his father, and younger brother. To make a living Elias has decided to set up a farm with greenhouses to grow tomatoes and sweet peppers. We are asking you to join us and help Elias fund his first 3 greenhouses at $700 each. I hope we can beat this target by a multiple.

We hope we can enable a strong and decent man to live the 2nd half of his life with self-respect and the ability to continue to support his family. 

You can send us a private message if you have any questions. On our own behalf and on the behalf of Elias, thank you for helping us help our most trusted Sherpa!

Gene Swinton (KS16) & Max Ryans (KS17)

Toronto, Canada

LinkedIn:
www.linkedin.com/in/geneswinton
www.linkedin.com/in/maxryans

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#MITFintech | Boston, MASS

1. There is still a great amount of confusion both among the general public and IT industry professionals about blockchain, how it is different from crypto-currencies and where it derives value from. Many seem to be unable to fully understand the magnitude of potential transformation which blockchain is expected to bring to society.

2. Rachel Halesma, a representative from World Bank involved with various blockchain projects around the globe, does not perceive blockchain’s high appetite for electricity (i.e. mining) to be a real problem.

(Kellogg crew at MITFintech)

3. Kevin O’Leary from ‘Shark Tank’ apparently owns “a LOT of crypto” and is positively LONG on it. He is convinced that ICOs will make IPOs disappear. (comment below how do you think this statement reconciles with the recent announcement from Google to ban all ICO advertising effective June 2018)

4. Panelists made emphasis on discussions around developing “ecosystems” with network effects. Gravitation forces growing over time around an ecosystem can be a good predictor of a blockchain value (and value of a coin that represents it).

5. The industry is still in its infancy, but very rapidly evolving. If you snooze — you lose. It proves to be a challenge to keep up with the industry even for those working with blockchain technology on a daily basis.

6. Gary Gensler from CFTC confirmed that after a recent meeting in Tokyo with regulators from multiple jurisdictions NO COUNTRY has yet developed any clear idea as to how to approach crypto-currencies. Governments have a choice between 3 options with respect to crypto: i) Isolate, ii) Integrate, or iii) Regulate.

7. As far as ICOs goes, Gary confirmed that most likely all of the ICOs will fall under the existing securities regulation frameworks in the majority of jurisdictions. Over the past few weeks, SEC sent out dozens of subpoenas to non-compliant ICOs. Things are expected to get even tougher in the USA.

And my final observation is less serious…

8. Every project team or every panel discussion during the #MITFintech event tends to include at least one engineer or entrepreneur with an unshaven beard. Blockchain = Beard?

You can reach me with questions or comments on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/geneswinton/

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Despite the current seemingly over-saturated ICO market conditions (where I get bombarded with two-to-three dozen of great or junk re-targeting campaigns every single day), here is why I believe ICO boom is only starting to unfold:

Interim issues on the demand side:

1. Scale-ability issues of crypto exchanges

Many exchanges are overflown with new applications and do not accept new clients, which means a whole lot of new willing-to-pay ICO participants are held at bay unable to fully integrate themselves into the demand curve. Once the KYC backlog is cleared and they “release the gate”, a huge herd of new retail investors will be rushing to get their piece of the action.

2. Steep learning curve

An absolute majority of current crypto market players are still not fully understanding HOW to participate in an ICO, e.g. the limitations of sending funds directly from exchange wallets and the confusion about ERC-20 capable wallets, lack of familiarity with MetaMask for Ethereum and so on and so forth. All this implies that the real supply of capital to ICOs from retail investors will come as soon as the crowd of new investors climb along the steep learning curve of crypto-currencies.

3. Absence of institutional investors

Lack of regulation prevents institutional investors from engaging into ICO market. While this might be beneficial for the current ROI to the retail investor, it may quickly change with the introduction of regulations across multiple jurisdictions later this year. The entry of institutional capital into ICO market will shift the demand curve further to the right while hammering down more nails into the coffin of the traditional IPO industry.

Factors influencing the supply side:

1. “Blockchainization” of economy

The process of “blockchainization” of the global economy and humankind as a whole has just begun. It will be rolling across the globe touching all the industries and every aspect of our lives. This means that on the supply side flow of new tokens has just started, and we will see a lot more new and established companies launching ICOs in 2018 and beyond.

2. ICO flotation costs and credibility

Today low ICO flotation costs provide a low barrier to entry to ANY player, including those whose main objective is to defraud investors. As crypto and ICOs become more mainstream, budget requirements to market and promote ICOs will only increase. Saturation will drive flotation costs higher and mandate a lot more $$$ in ICO budget to get through the clutter and secure sufficient share of voice for your otherwise perfect ICO idea.

While this may seem detrimental on the supply side, increased flotation costs may indirectly help to organically weed out fraudulent schemes, which are so strongly associated with ICOs today. This will inevitably boost overall credibility to new levels, driving general acceptance on the demand side.

Of course, any new regulations coming later this year may trigger new developments and modify the entire landscape of ICOs from what we see today.

You can reach me with questions or comments on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/geneswinton/

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