Former Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao has started a new project that has nothing to do with crypto but includes gaming, education, blockchain and NFTs (Non Fungible Tokens) as soul bound tokens. The project called Giggle Academy aims to offer high quality education that is free to all.

As CZ notes on X, “Building a high-quality and sticky education platform that is entirely free and accessible to all is the most impactful thing I could do for the next chapter of my life.”

The platform will include gamification to make learning addictive. It will include high quality content from the best teachers and game developers in the world.

NFTs will be uses for badges, points, scores, rankings and more. Levels and badges will be issued as Soul Bound Tokens. SBT are blockchain based tokens that cannot be transferred to others. Potential employers can easily verify them on the blockchain, with the students’ permission.

As per the concept paper while current schools tend to encourage kids to be “average”. Ie, you are good at math, but weak in English, so you should spend more time on English than Math. Giggle Academy leans towards the opposite. Students who are good at Math will be nudged to focus more on math, and less on other subjects.

In the concept paper it notes,” We feel this is the most effective way for them to be the strongest at what they do best, and make themselves most valuable to the world.”

There will be no degrees but giggle points, levels and badges.  A Giggle level or badge system will be developed to identify how far a student has progressed on a certain subject. For example, Science Level 391 Purple Badge could mean Grade 3, 91% completion, at top 20 percentile.

CZ does not want to make revenues from Giggle Academy.

He adds, “ I chose this project because my area of expertise is building (teams to build) software platforms. We (together with a team) can reach hundreds of millions of people. This is scalable, and thus high impact. In addition, education is fundamental to everything in our world. Give a man a fish vs teach a man to fish. This is the most impactful thing that I could come up with for the next chapter of my life.”

This comes in parallel with an interesting development happening in the blockchain ecosystem. The new terminology, Decentralized Science (DeSci) is a movement aiming to build public infrastructure for scientific research using Web3 technologies.

DeSci allows for more funding sources, censorship-free collaboration, and open access to research data. By leveraging blockchain technology, DeSci has the potential to make science more decentralized, transparent, and accessible.

Essentially, DeSci aims to broaden access to scientific data, promote more transparent peer review processes, and incentivize international collaboration among researchers. By leveraging blockchain technology, DeSci can ensure the integrity and immutability of scientific records while eliminating barriers to entry.

DeSci can revolutionize the allocation of research funds through mechanisms such as quadratic donations and decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs). This promotes a fairer distribution of resources.

DeSci may increase accessibility by leveraging blockchain-based research repositories. This can ensure that scientific data and publications are stored transparently on a decentralized ledger, making them more accessible. Smart contracts can govern access to data, typically ensuring its fair and secure distribution.

DeSci can introduce incentives for reproducibility, such as token rewards and reputation systems. Smart contracts can facilitate transparent and verifiable peer review processes, incentivizing researchers to make reproducible scientific work. This typically improves the reliability of scientific findings.

But most importantly just like CZ’s project, DeSci platforms can promote open access to scientific data and publications, democratizing access to knowledge. TradSci publishing models tend to involve subscription fees and access barriers, often limiting the distribution of research findings.

Swiss based Hashgraph association has partnered with UAE du telecom to harness the potential of the Hedera Blockchain to offer secure traceable and scalable solutions for enterprises.

du and the The Hashgraph Association will provide innovative blockchain solutions to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), governmental institutions, and municipalities by leveraging the efficiency of Hashgraph on a decentralised, public network, the Hedera Distributed Ledger Technology ensures a trusted and reliable foundation for the newly developed solutions.

Target sectorswill include manufacturing, healthcare, education, smart cities, and agriculture, catering to a wide range of industries seeking secure and efficient applications.

Notably, Hedera stands out as the greenest proof-of-stake network according to UCL research, aligning perfectly with du’s commitment to providing sustainable solutions.

Prior to this Kuwait based Zain telecom group had joined Hedera as one of their governing council members. 

In June 2023  Hashgraph Association, an independent non-profit organization focused on building a vibrant innovative ecosystem for startups, enterprises, and government institutions leveraging the capabilities of Hedera Hashgraph announced it would be expanding into the UAE and launching Hashgraph Ventures out of Abu Dhabi’s ADGM ( Abu Dhabi Global Market) with several important large enterprise collaborations within the UAE. 

In addition Humans.ai Blockchain for AIs which announced it would be working with UAE based RAK Digital Assets Oasis (RAK DAO) and Blockchain AI empowered platform Humans.ai   to drive artificial intelligence innovation in the Ras Al Khaimah (RAK) UAE, had introduced wrapped AI NFTs using Hedera Hashgraph blockchain network. 

Humans.ai’s cutting-edge Blockchain for AIs has launched its cross-chain interoperability with Hedera Hashgraph, to revolutionize the way AI NFTs are used across different platforms.

The UAE AI camp a five day camp organized by both the  National Programme for Artificial Intelligence, in collaboration with the National Programme for Coders which targets school and university students, includes six cutting edge including web development and robotics, digital entrepreneurship and career planning, generative artificial intelligence, online safety and cybersecurity, blockchain and cryptocurrency, and virtual and augmented reality through interactive workshops, webinars, and deep dialogues in the field of artificial intelligence.

Omar bin Sultan Al Olama, Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence, Digital Economy, and Remote Work Applications and Director-General of the Prime Minister’s Office, stated that the UAE government, led by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister, and Ruler of Dubai, is keen to on fostering a generation empowered with cutting-edge technology and artificial intelligence, enabling them to actively contribute to creating a sustainable digital economy while bolstering the nation’s leadership and readiness for the future.

According to Al Olama, this collaborative effort aims to equip the UAE AI camp participants with digital tools and technologies, enabling them to enhance the framework of future prospects and leverage artificial intelligence solutions in innovative ways.

This year, the camp offers specialised programmes and interactive workshops with the participation of a group of government entities, private sector and international companies such as Cyber Security Council, Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM), DP World, Dubai Chambers, Road and Transport Authority (RTA), Dubai Cyber Innovation Park, Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), coding ambassadors, one of the Coders HQ initiatives, Sharjah Entrepreneurship Centre, Technology Innovation Institute, Ajman X, Fujairah Police GHQ, Microsoft, AWS, Huawei, Careem, Dell Technologies, Stripe, Accenture, Le Wagon, Jeel code, VR Academi, Bnb, Mathworks, University of Birmingham Dubai, Cybernet , 42, Women in AI, Intel, QUAE, Marses robotic systems and others with the aim of providing participants in the camp with future skills.

The UAE AI Camp will continue until the beginning of August 2023. It aims to explore the field of artificial intelligence and digital technologies, shaping the future of technology and digital life through awareness workshops. These workshops will focus on developing participants’ skills in programming, designing artificial intelligence applications and smart applications. Additionally, in-depth workshops will cover various areas such as generative artificial intelligence, deep learning, and machine learning.

The camp also includes meetings for those interested in computing aimed at sharing the experiences of leading companies in the field of artificial intelligence. Workshops will be conducted to discuss the power of artificial intelligence, image and language generation and understanding, as well as how to utilise artificial intelligence tools in our daily lives. Participants will also have the opportunity to learn how to create 3D designs using reality technology.

Additionally, workshops will discuss the challenges in the world of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technologies.

Those interested can register for various workshops through https://ai.gov.ae/aicamp5/.

UAE Ministry of Education (MoE) has launched the blockchain enabled “automated attestation” service to make it easier for university graduates to get their certificates verified quickly.

All attested university certificates will be provided through the blockchain-powered UAE Pass app, in cooperation with the Telecommunications and Digital Government Regulatory Authority (TDRA), enabling students to access their attested certificates in a faster and more reliable manner.

During the first phase, six licensed universities, comprising almost 11,000 students, will benefit from the new service.

According to WAM news agency the  announcement was made during a press conference attended by Dr. Ahmad Belhoul Al Falasi, Minister of Education; Dr. Mohammed Al Mualla, Under-Secretary for Academic Affairs of Higher Education at Ministry of Education, and representatives from UAE-based media outlets.

Certificates issued by UAE-based higher education institutions (HEIs) can now be attested in less than an hour. The service will facilitate graduates’ transition to the workforce or help them complete their education locally or abroad.

Dr. Al Falasi noted the “automated attestation” service is a proactive digital service that aims to make the attestation process faster and simpler for students. It ensures that the final outcome meets the quality standards set by the UAE Digital Government Strategy. This initiative aligns with the Ministry’s goal to improve the higher education system, which plays a crucial role in creating a knowledgeable society with global competence.

He said, “We, at the Ministry of Education, seek to harness cutting-edge technological solutions to boost the efficiency of our services, to help students contribute to the UAE’s comprehensive and sustainable development. We will keep using technology to enhance different parts of the education system, establishing the UAE as a top educational destination for students and the home to excellent educational institutions.”

The six licensed Universities included in first phase are  the United Arab Emirates University; Mohammed Bin Rashid University Of Medicine and Health Sciences; Khalifa University of Science and Technology; the University of Sharjah; Zayed University; and the American University of Sharjah. In the second and third phases, the service will be made available to all licensed HEIs in the country by 2024.

Ukraine headquartered Hacken, a blockchain security auditor that aims to make Web3 a safer place, has partnered with Dubai Blockchain Center.

As per a Hacken team tweet, “ This is a pivotal step towards accelerating blockchain adoption in Dubai and ensuring enhanced security in the tech scene.”

Igor Hacken, Business Development Manager at Hacken tweeted, “Very proud moment for hackenclub expanding into the UAE joining the efforts of keeping the blockchain secure with Dubai Blockchain Center and  Dr. Marwan Alzarouni. Stay tuned to learn more about all of our contributions in to the rapidly growing region.”

The  collaboration will also include providing  mentoring, education on blockchain security and contributing to the development of regulatory requirements for project licensing.

Hacken offers various solutions including smart contract audit, proof of reserves, and others. In February 2023, Hacken researchers identified a bug in the Binance zkSNARK-based Proof of Reserves system which was then resolved with Binance team.

Since their inception in 2017, they have carried out 1200 audits.

This is not the first collaboration in the region. Prior to this Hacken launched a virtual Hackathon in May 2023 with UAE based Venom Foundation with a pool prize of $225,000.

Most recently Hacken’s CEO and Co Founder, Dyma Budorin published a research conducted by CER one of their partners which revealed that 70% of crypto wallets have security gaps, exposing digital assets to vulnerabilities.

The presence of Hacken in the UAE, looks to benefit the blockchain ecosystem as a it creates more awareness on digital assets auditing and security.

As part of Women’s Day, Binance cryptocurrency exchange, is investing more than $2 million in more than 10 countries globally to educate them and mentor them on crypto and Web3. Currently women comprise only 37% of crypto owners.

Binance Charity donated $2 million to fund over 36,000 dedicated Web3 scholarships for women in 2022, and will continue funding courses, programs and scholarships in 2023 with a focus on women and underrepresented communities.

The 2022 scholarships to study blockchain and crypto-related courses at universities, schools and nonprofits were awarded to women in Germany, Nigeria, Kenya, Brazil, France, South Africa, Australia, and Ukraine. 

For Women’s Day, Binance Charity will also make an additional donation of $100,000 to Georgia’s Innovation & Technology Agency (GITA) to support web3 education and training for women. Binance Academy will provide educational content for GITA web3 courses.

With the objective of supporting women’s participation in the blockchain and Web3 industry in the Middle East, Binance held a Woman in Crypto event in Dubai. The event aimed to empower women with the knowledge and skills necessary to thrive in the crypto space and featured a diverse line-up of female experts in key fields such as entrepreneurship, personal branding, and Web3 career advice. 

The event also covered crucial topics, including how to select the right company to work with and ways to create an empowering platform for women interested in entering the crypto industry.

Binance was co-founded in 2017 by Yi He, making the company one of the few female-founder crypto companies in the world. Less than 5% of crypto founders at top crypto companies are women2.  As of 2022, the number of female-founded cryptocurrency companies was approximately 292, out of more than 10,000 companies3.

In order to further address the gender gap, Binance has created its first formal internship and graduate programs, which offer more access to careers in crypto for diverse talent, including women. The company also offers guidance and career advice to women through female mentorship programs, talent workshops, educational courses and lectures to share industry experience and insights on how to break into a career in Web3.

“As one of the few female leaders in the industry, I believe that we have a mission, through Binance Charity and Binance Academy, to help more women understand web3 and blockchain technology — our education and internship programs aim to empower young women with knowledge and skills ready for industry disruption,” said Yi He, Binance co-founder and chief marketing officer. “We believe that anyone with ideas can change the world, regardless of gender. We hope these commitments will result in more women on the front line of innovation and bring change to our industry.”

UAE Abu Dhabi University (ADU) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with 5ire, a fifth generation blockchain ecosystem, to strengthen blockchain education, research and entrepreneurship. both parties will identify and support compelling projects on blockchain technology, with a specific focus on sustainability and accessibility.

As part of its commitment to expand the course offerings, ADU will work closely with 5ire to build a comprehensive framework that will provide educational opportunities for students, including courses and workshops focused on blockchain technology and its applications. In addition, 5ire will provide financial sponsorship for ADU’s UAE national students, who have met the criteria and are interested in obtaining professional certifications or pursuing degrees focused on blockchain courses. The criteria include but are not limited to academic performance, financial need and demonstrated interest in blockchain technology.

 

Furthermore, the partnership will focus on providing resources to support students and researchers that are interested in developing and commercializing projects based on blockchain technology. ADU and 5ire will work on a business plan to launch a blockchain academy with a profit-sharing model to offer professional certifications accepted within the UAE and throughout the region.

The parties will organize a hackathon hosted at ADU for both school and university students, as well as offering hands-on training and mentorship to the hackathon participants. A training program will also be arranged to ensure that they have the necessary skills and knowledge to advance and commercialize projects focused on 5ire’s blockchain technology.

 

5ire will offer ADU faculty and staff members comprehensive training and a “train-the-trainer” certificate program, to enable them to effectively support future training efforts and integrate 5ire technology into the curriculum for undergraduate and post-graduate programs. The University students and faculty will also be provided with access to both 5ire’s software and hardware technology and curriculum for teaching and research purposes.

 

Prof. Ghassan Aouad, Chancellor of Abu Dhabi University (ADU), said: “We are thrilled to be partnering with 5ire to further advance our programs and offer our students a well-rounded technological experience that builds on their skillset required for the career market. This collaboration aligns with our mission to continuously develop our programs and offerings to empower our students to grow, succeed and prepare them for their future careers and leadership roles in their respective fields. At ADU, we strive to be up to date with the latest advancements across all sectors, we believe that blockchain technology has the potential to transform a wide range of industries and we are delighted to be at the forefront of this transformation.”

 

Pratik Gauri, Co-Founder and CEO of 5ire, said: “We are delighted to be working with Abu Dhabi University (ADU) to advance blockchain education, research and entrepreneurship in the UAE. Our technology is designed to address the problem of low blockchain adoption due to sustainability and accessibility challenges. By partnering with ADU, we will be able to provide students and researchers with the necessary skills and knowledge to develop and commercialize projects that can have a positive impact on society and the environment.”

 

ADU and 5ire will work-hand-in-hand to explore the potential uses and benefits of 5ire’s blockchain technology. In addition to establishing collaborations with companies and organizations in the region that are working on related projects and could benefit from 5ire’s technology. The collaboration will also yield the development of case studies presenting the application of 5ire technology in areas such as sustainability, supply chain and logistics.

Sharjah University has launched its blockchain pilot in the presence of Sheikh Sultan bin Ahmed bin Sultan Al Qasimi, Deputy Ruler of Sharjah and President of the University of Sharjah.

‏The President of the University was briefed about the advantages of using Blockchain technology, which includes several aspects, including information security and confidentiality, and ensuring the credibility of information and documents, in addition to accelerating procedures.

As per the news, the work teams at the university worked effortlessly to unify and simplify procedures and to coordinate with all parties and partners to gain access to academic, scientific, and administrative services that serve the University of Sharjah community, which includes students, graduates, and the teaching and administrative staff.

In September 2022 UAE The University of Sharjah launched a research project aimed to develop a blockchain metaverse system to preserve the UAE culture and heritage. Working with BSV Blockchain Association, the University of Sharjah planned to retain ownership of UAE culture in the form of digital assets, and then develop an NFT and physical marketplace where users can exchange physical originals as well as NFTs all in a metaverse environment.

University of Sharjah has been working closely with BSV Blockchain on several projects. During the BSV Blockchain convention in UAE, BSV stated that they were working with several entities in the UAE including the Ministry of Energy, University of Sharjah, and UAE Department of Community, Dubai Police and othe

UAE startup Educatly, a platform connecting students to global higher education opportunities based out of in5 Tech, a business incubator by TECOM Group PJSC, is implementing a blockchain solution for student data verification, which is essential for them to provide legitimate students records to relevant universities.

As per the announcement, the Blockchain data verification solution is also crucial for foreign students who want to further their education overseas because it might be challenging to obtain original copies of their degrees elsewhere.

In the third quarter of 2022 Educatly’s community of students increased by five times, from 100,000 to 500,000 in the past nine months and represents more than 150 countries and territories.

2022 has been marked by several milestones for the tech start-up, which was founded by former LinkedIn employees in 2020. Educatly has cast a wider net across the higher education industry to feature more than 3,000 universities on its platform and secured active recruitment agreements with 500. It also welcomed Head of LinkedIn’s MENA and EMEA growth markets, Ali Matar, to its Board of Advisors just last month.

Educatly Founder & CEO Mohmmed El Sonbaty stated,  “We are thrilled that the global appetite for transnational student education has bounced back since the pandemic. Our unique platform is providing students with the opportunities to study abroad and enroll at leading international universities around the world. We have seen a spike in interest in students joining our platform from the UAE and we are witnessing further growth in Dubai emerging as the next international higher education destination.”

On behalf of in5, Majed Al Suwaidi, Senior Vice President of Dubai Media City, added: “At in5, we seek to foster a thriving community for smart individuals; a space where they can obtain valuable advice from mentors and advisors and transform their aspirations into businesses with sustainable growth. Expanding the reach and influence of start-ups is a top priority – that’s why one of our key goals is to facilitate access to potential investment. We are proud to have Educatly as one of in5 tech’s start-ups as they have demonstrated impressive growth despite launching their business amid a global pandemic. Educatly’s new software-as-a-service (SaaS) demonstrates their strategic alignment with UAE’s Digital Transformation, Sustainability, and other initiatives. Their presence at in5 gives us the opportunity to showcase the diversity of promising start-ups in our city and region, while providing the most extraordinary with a global platform for their unique ideas.”

Educatly’s new software-as-a-service (SAAS) had a helping hand in its growth by increasing the monthly recurring revenue for more than 28% month over month. Its built-in coding and design implements a smart recommendation feature using a special matchmaking algorithm that links students to relevant degrees, universities, and countries according to their requirements.

The system automatically informs the university partners of new leads and profiles to facilitate student recruitment. This unique feature is vital to the networking effect of building Educatly’s social media platform.

The BSV Blockchain association MENA chapter is working on several blockchain education and implementation projects to drive innovation in the UAE. To launch these initiatives BSV Blockchain will be hosting a VIP reception event in Ras Al Khaimah on October 8th 2022 at the InterContinental Ras Al Khaimah Resort and Spa.

Members of the UAE royal family, C-level executives and select members of the media will be in attendance.

Muhammad Salman Anjum, BSV MENA Hub Lead and Chief Mate of InvoiceMate stated, “This event will include the rolling out of training programmes in the Ras Al Khaimah to orient government decision makers and educate local developers and entrepreneurs on the capabilities of the BSV blockchain, an initiative that has already received great interest in the UAE.”

At the event notable speakers and global industry experts will share their uses cases built on BSV Blockchain. They include names such as Marcin Zarakowski – Chief of Staff at BSV Blockchain Association, Bryan Daugherty – Co-founder of blockchain distribution network SmartLedger, Mohammed Ibrahim Jega – Co-founder of Domineum and Geoffrey Weli-Wosu – Co-founder of Domineum, Stephan Nilsson – Founder of UNISOT, and Rohan Sharan – Founder of TimeChain Labs.

BSV Blockchain Association MENA chapter will also be exhibiting at the Future Blockchain Summit in Dubai being held alongside Gitex 2022.

The summit will allow industry experts to leverage countless networking opportunities, an expert conference programme and transformational workshops to explore distinct themes including: Blockchain for Enterprise, The Future of Digital Assets, Into the Metaverse

BSV Blockchain Association will have a physical booth on the show floor where attendees can learn about the original Bitcoin, and its benefits to start-ups and enterprises, as well as speak to BSV Blockchain companies in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.