A warning: we're going to be talking about the strange world of blockchains and cryptocurrency today, about which I am far less informed than is the case for matters relating to aging. Blockchains are a way to solve problems in distributed collaboration, allowing enforcement of transactions and outcomes without the need for a trusted third party. Implementations to date, most notably Bitcoin and Ethereum, have used the cost of large amounts of computation as the barrier that prevents cheating, but that requires a collectively equally large ongoing expenditure on computation on the part of participants in the network. That is an expense that people have been happy to undertake, as the rewards for participating outweigh the costs. Nonetheless, the community is now at the point at which the output of entire power stations goes towards fueling data centers dedicated to blockchains.
One of the trends underway in this strange world is an attempt to move away from the use of computational cost as an enforcement mechanism ("proof of work") to something based on provable ownership of tokens ("proof of stake"). This has turned out to be a technically difficult challenge and is an area of active research and development. One of the major blockchains, Ethereum, is on the verge of making that switch, but progress has been slow enough to allow one particular group to forge ahead with a plan to clone the Ethereum network with their own implementation of a proof of stake mechanism, calling the new project Pulse Chain.
The Pulse Chain principals believe they have finessed the legal side of things to allow for cloning a whole new blockchain and handing out tokens to everyone already on Ethereum without falling afoul of the SEC. Thus this looks a lot like easy funds, profit for nothing, to cryptocurrency insiders. Much (not all, but much) of the entrepreneurship that takes place within the cryptocurrency space can be viewed as some form of get rich quick scheme at the core, but there is a great deal of altruism along the way. Blockchain insiders donate their wealth to their favored charitable causes to a noteworthy degree, sometimes via the publicity events that have come to be called airdrops, a gift of tokens, after the old trope of helicopter money. There is a lot to unpack in that choice of name, regarding the views and sense of humor to be found in the blockchain community.
Which comes to the point of this post. The Pulse Chain principals are running an airdrop to gain publicity for the launch of their newly cloned blockchain. They, like many in that space, are in favor of the work of the SENS Research Foundation on the foundations of human rejuvenation. So, in a sizable act of charitable giving, they have connected donations to the SENS Research Foundation to the receipt of tokens on the Pulse Chain for the next ten days or so. In a few days at the end of last week, SENS Research Foundation received more than $20 million in donations, about four years of their present budget. That will make a big difference to the future of work on the foundations of rejuvenation biotechnology!
Why this much support for rejuvenation research now? The SENS Research Foundation has in the past few years received smaller, but still sizable donations of cryptocurrency from various noted figures in that community. This particular example is, I think, the strong support of a founder of a new blockchain, coupled to cryptocurrency insiders voting with their feet regarding their opinion on whether Pulse Chain will become a functional, valuable blockchain - i.e. will they see a rapid increase in the value of their tokens. They see profit in making a donation in order to access the Pulse Chain launch airdrop. There are other incentives under the hood, but that is about the long and the short of it. As is usually the case, one cannot look at this sort of thing without considering that we live in interesting times. The future is an odd place to be exploring, one day at a time.
Donations sent to the addresses at SENS.org/donate may be tax deductible for you. You must follow the SENS.org PulseChain instructions. Sacrifices to SENS.org during the sacrifice phase earn 25% less points compared to sacrifices at Pulse.info. SENS.org can also accept stocks and bank wires. Once the sacrifice phase is over, the total sacrifice points for each sacrificer's address's points (at the same metamask address) are totaled up across all the supported chains and the SENS.org report. This creates a list of sacrificers ranked by total points from largest to smallest. Everyone's sacrifice is publicly viewable during the period by checking the public balances of the sacrifice addresses list on each chain. This way you might know when you want to sacrifice some more to move up in the rankings.
Please do not make your donation until you have read ALL of the instructions below and sent all of the required information.
You can donate to SENS Research Foundation in any currency, including any cryptocurrency that is traded at Coinbase (note that, in particular, this means we cannot accept HEX or XRP). Check our DONATE page for all the methods of donation that we accept at. There is no minimum donation threshold that must be met. If it's a cryptocurrency, it will have to be a coin that we accept - any coin that Coinbase trades - and our addresses are listed on our donation page cited above. To verify that your donation is yours, we are asking that you either send a source address (if it's a non-custodial wallet), or we'll give you a random number that your crypto donation must end in (if your wallet is on an exchange).
Once your donation is processed, we'll send you a confirmation email that will include your date of donation, its USD value, and your provided ETH wallet address within 48 hours of your donation. If this is correct, you have no further actions to take. If it is incorrect, you have 24 hours to correct any errors. After that, we will send that exact information to Richard Heart to finalize your entry into the Airdrop. Don't worry, the actual date of your donation is the date that will be sent to Richard Heart, regardless of when we get the information to him.