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Etherscan, a popular Ethereum blockchain scanning website, has introduced a tool using OpenAI's artificial intelligence technology to help users interpret smart contract source code. The tool, called Code Reader, enables users to request explanations for the entirety or specific parts of a smart contract's source code and access its "read" and "write" functions. This helps users make informed decisions on how to interact with smart contracts and explore potential use in decentralized applications. The integration of AI-based tools in the blockchain and crypto sectors is growing rapidly, as seen by Bybit's recent incorporation of ChatGPT into its trading platform. Although Etherscan's tool is intended for informational purposes, users are advised to verify the provided answers rather than relying on them exclusively for evidence or bug bounty submissions. To utilize Code Reader, users must connect to OpenAI's API and have adequate usage limits; however, the tool currently does not support conversation threads and can only be queried through one-off prompts.
New York-based digital asset broker-dealer INX has secured a $5.25 million investment from investment firm Republic, which will acquire approximately 9.5% stake in INX at a pre-money valuation of around $50 million. The deal includes a non-binding commitment for Republic to potentially acquire 100% of equity at a valuation of $120 million as early as Q3 this year, with the initial deal's closing expected within 60 days, subject to regulatory approval. Both firms aim to expand tokenization infrastructure and access to digital assets for investors worldwide. Republic, also based in New York, is a digital merchant bank backed by Galaxy Interactive and Morgan Stanley, among others. Integrating INX's digital asset coverage into Republic's platforms could result in significant expansion of crypto trading capabilities for a large traditional finance client base. Republic CEO Kendrick Nguyen stated that combining INX's digital trading infrastructure with Republic's expertise in primary distribution would redefine capital raising and empower institutional and retail investors globally.
BNB Chain has launched the opBNB testnet, an Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM)-compatible blockchain based on Optimism's OP Stack, with developers anticipating speeds of 4,000 transactions per second (tps) at a cost of 0.005 U.S. cents per transaction. These speeds match those of Arbitrum and double that of BNB Chain, far surpassing Ethereum's 30 tps. Testnets like opBNB simulate real-world usage, enabling developers to trial applications and complex tools before mainnet deployment. Layer 2 blockchains, which batch multiple transactions into one and submit them to a base blockchain, can help alleviate network congestion and reduce transaction costs. opBNB's EVM-compatible platform allows developers to create open ecosystems, easing the migration of applications to BSC and broadening their user base. The enhanced scalability of opBNB addresses challenges faced by projects with high transaction volumes on BSC, enabling them to thrive. Developers and projects can begin building on the opBNB testnet starting Monday.
Ethereum developers are considering a drastic increase in the validator limit due to growing interest and longer waiting times for Ethereum validator nodes. The proposed change would raise the limit from 32 ether (ETH) to 2,048 ether, a 6,300% increase. This move comes as large entities, like Lido and crypto exchanges, are spinning up multiple validator nodes to offer staking yield services to users. Developers on an Ethereum core developer call acknowledged that the current limit led to a rapid expansion of the network's validator set, but also a significant increase in the number of validators running the network. The proposal, first introduced in early June by developers Mike Neuder, Francesco D'Amato, Aditya Asgaonkar, and Justin Drake, is still under debate and not actively being worked on. Data reveals that the current waiting time to run a validator node on Ethereum is 44 days, up from nearly a month in May. The demand for validators is likely driven by large ether holders seeking to earn passive income through a nearly 5% annual yield without cashing out their holdings.
Over the past two months, Bitcoin's price has experienced a pullback of over 16%, yet it is still up nearly 60% year-to-date. This performance outshines Nasdaq's 38% rise, and the cryptocurrency may continue to benefit from various bullish tailwinds. The dollar index has been falling, with the Federal Reserve pausing rate hikes due to cooling inflation. A declining U.S. Treasury volatility indicates increased risk-taking in financial markets. Additionally, BlackRock, the world's largest asset manager, filed for a spot-based Bitcoin ETF last week, signaling strong institutional appetite for Bitcoin-based products. The application includes a surveillance-sharing agreement to mitigate concerns of market manipulation. The SEC has recently sued crypto exchanges Binance and Coinbase for offering unregistered securities, but these lawsuits did not mention Bitcoin or Ether. As regulatory risks concentrate on altcoins, investors are rotating money into Bitcoin, which may continue to outperform altcoins given the breakout in its dominance rate.