Friday March 8, 2019 9:16 PM
1 week 4 days ago
Hodl Hodl, a peer-to-peer cryptocurrency exchange, has announced that it is launching a prediction market on Bitcoin. Slated for launch in the spring of 2019, it would be the first Bitcoin-based prediction market to go live on Bitcoin’s mainnet.A prediction market is a novel application of blockchain technology. The betting platforms allow users to secure odds, futures and outcomes with smart contracts. Two users place funds (traditionally, ether) into a smart contract to bet on futures for any given outcome; when the outcome arrives, the smart contract automatically pays out to the winner.Most prediction markets are built on blockchains with a more flexible smart contract language, like Ethereum. Augur, for example, pioneered the model when it launched in July 2018 as the first decentralized prediction market to make use of Ethereum’s ERC-20 token contract. Other prediction markets have followed suit, including Gnosis on Ethereum and Bhodi on QTUM.Despite Augur’s frontrunning status, Hodl Hodl believes that it can improve on aspects of the platform’s operations — specifically, in its solution to the “oracle problem:” How, for example, does the smart contract know who wins the World Cup, if bitcoin closed above $3,850 by midnight on March 8, or who won an election?You need software and people (oracles) to feed this data to the smart contract. The inherent counterparty risk becomes an issue of trust and accuracy: How do you k...