Aug 112020
how to buy yam from yam finance defi token on ethereum

This guide is for people looking to buy YAM token from YAM Finance. YAM Finance dubs itself as “An Experiment in Fair Farming, Governance, and Elasticity” in their introductory post.

As you can imagine, it combines a bunch of new DeFi protocols and also adopts many best practices from the space. For instance, YAM token will launch with full on-chain governance, similar to Compound. It has elastic supply, so has many properties similar to AMPL. The treasury (similar to AMPL) is held in yCRV – the stablecoin pool on Curve that has yTokens from YFI.

Another big selling point for YAM is that it is taking a leaf out of the YFI playbook, i.e. no premine, no founder allocation, no VC allocation.

YAM is going to be distributed in 2 phases:

  • Phase-1: 8 staking pools of COMP, LEND, LINK, MKR, SNX, WETH, YFI, ETH/AMPL.
  • Phase-2: YAM/yCRV Uniswap pool

The above is very similar to what YFI did with its initial Curve pools and then Balancer pool for YFI. The interesting thing is the Uniswap pool would be 50/50 for YAM/yCRV whereas the YFI Balancer pool was 98/2 DAI/YFI.

Update: After the original YAM fiasco, the project is surprisingly still very much alive. In fact, it is adopting a lot of the DeFi stack and building new financial products like insurance. Also, the rebasing part has now been voted out and removed from YAM, so it behaves more like a regular token. To that end, YAM seems like a younger cousin to YFI.

How to Buy YAM

YAM liquidity is spread across multiple exchanges currently. The best way to buy YAM is therefore via 1inch which will aggregate all the different exchanges and also private market makers (e.g. those that connect DeFi and Binance). An additional advantage is that you can convert from any token to YAM, not just ETH.

Simply connect your MetaMask or another Web3 wallet to 1inch and convert from ETH or another ERC20 to YAM in a single transaction. If you don’t have ETH, you can buy from Binance or Coinbase. As you can see below, 1inch does smart order routing via the best exchanges for you.

LINK to YAM conversion on 1inch

Edit: 1inch has natively listed YAM! Just enter the tokens you have and the conversion to YAM and you should be good to go. For example, here is how they route the order to exchange a few BAL from Balancer to YAM. This is an older example from the older UI that I’ve retained to show a sample exchange.

1inch YAM token

Staking YAM

Update: Farming for YAM has now ended.

Instead of buying YAM, you could also stake your crypto to earn YAM based on the phase-1 distribution mentioned above. To stake, go to and then stake your tokens. Be aware though that YAM smart contracts are not audited and it has a much higher smart contract risk than some other projects.

Also see how to buy YFI if you’re interested in projects like YAM.

Aug 082020

This is a guide on how to buy TEND (Tendies) – a meme token that has captured the imagination of some far flung communities. Believe it or not but TEND remains a very community driven and active crypto token.

In some ways, it is very similar to DOGE that catapulted to over $1 billion in marketcap but started as a joke or meme currency. To this day, DOGE remains firmly in the top 100 cryptocurrencies by marketcap.

To be sure, one should be very careful before buying tokens like TEND that could easily lose a 100% of their value very rapidly. Even then, if you are looking to diversify your meme tokens, TEND is a good candidate.

How to buy TEND

There are two primary starting points if you want to buy TEND via completely decentralized exchanges (no need to send your money to an exchange or deal with KYC or other friction points. Read more in our guide to buy DeFi tokens).

Buy TEND with ETH

Currently, the deepest liquidity pool for TEND to ETH trades is Uniswap. Check out this price chart that also shows volume and liquidity.

In general, you want to look at the liquidity, trade volume, and price in conjunction. You can see Uniswap has the most trading volume and deepest liquidity for TEND.

If you already have ETH, you can go to this direct link to trade your ETH for TEND. Note that Uniswap does not natively show TEND in the list of tokens on their frontend, so make sure to double check that you are buying the right token. See the information section below.

Since the liquidity pools move around the entire DEX ecosystem, it is best to check on 1inch before buying directly from Uniswap (see next section).

buy tend with eth on 1inch

Buying TEND with Other ERC20 Tokens

If you have other tokens like LINK, RLC, etc. and want to use those to buy TEND, do not go directly to Uniswap. This is because Uniswap may or may not have the best price for you in those cases.

Instead, go to 1inch exchange, a liquidity aggregator, and enter the token that you have and the token you want to buy (TEND). Luckily, 1inch natively shows TEND so you don’t need to search by the token address.

You can see the difference achieved in price on Uniswap versus 1inch in this hypothetical trade of 10,000 RLC to TEND. It is similar for other tokens as well. 1inch is able to execute in a single transaction the best order fulfillment across multiple decentralized exchanges from 0x to Kyber to Balancer.

More information on TEND

First, make sure you are looking at the right contract address. Here is TEND on Etherscan. If you are looking at Uniswap, here is TEND page to check the price and liquidity.

Always double check the contract address since anyone can create a token called “TEND” on Ethereum.

Jun 112020

Update: If you are having trouble with gas prices, make sure to use GasNow and not ETHGasStation for the latest gas prices.

Update 2: If you are looking to trade UNI, check the price on 1inch before trading on Uniswap. If 1inch suggests 100% Uniswap, then go to Uniswap to trade. Otherwise, trade on 1inch to get better price (with Binance listing, their PMM may have better prices if there is exchange rate discrepancy).

You can set nonce in MetaMask but it is hidden by default. You may want to set your nonce because the gas prices are high and you want to unstuck your transaction. By setting your own nonce, you can try to override a pending transaction. You may not be able to do this via the MetaMask UI – for example if you imported your Ethereum wallet.

Before we begin, note that you need to double-check the nonce that you’re setting. If you set the nonce too low or too high, the transaction won’t get confirmed. This is definitely for advanced users of MetaMask and Ethereum, so do this with care. Read more about nonce on Stack Overflow.

Now that you’re ready, let’s get down to setting your own nonce in your MetaMask

Step-1: Go to your account on the top right corner of your MetaMask extension and click on Settings.

MetaMask Account Settings

Step-2: Under Settings, click on Advanced Settings. Then find the setting that says: “Customize transaction nonceTurn this on to change the nonce (transaction number) on confirmation screens. This is an advanced feature, use cautiously. Toggle this to “ON” state.

MetaMask Advanced Settings

Step-3: Now you can create a transaction as you normally would (e.g. if you want to send a 0 ETH transaction to yourself) and you’ll see a new field appear called “Set Custom Nonce“. This will show up in the confirmation screen when you try to send the transaction out.

MetaMask Set Custom Nonce

Here, we have manually set the custom nonce to 10000. Make sure you double check the nonce value!

When you hit confirm, MetaMask will broadcast your transaction with the custom nonce that you chose above.

Related: Learn how to speed up your MetaMask if it is slow

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Nov 022018

Slow Metamask Speed up Metamask

Are you experiencing a slow Metamask and looking to speed up Metamask while your browse the decentralized application (DApp) world? This guide will walk you through all the steps to get it up to speed.

Metamask has become a staple of the DApp ecosystem on Ethereum. It lets you interact with the Ethereum blockchain via a browser extension. This is really convenient as you don’t need to download Ethereum node, connect hardware wallets, or download other software. As a simple extension, it really is a browser’s gateway into Ethereum’s DApp world. Metamask is available for Chrome, Firefox, and Brave browsers.

But there is a big problem with Metamask – it gets really slow for power users. After a while, it seems to be taking longer and longer to load a transaction and send it to the network. When does it happen? It happens when you submit many transactions. This is especially the case for crypto-gamers that play games like CryptoKitties, Axie Infinity, Gods Unchained, etc. since they submit many transactions. For example, CryptoKitties players in aggregate birthed over a million cats so far, each birth recorded on the Ethereum blockchain! Those are large numbers.

If this describes you, here are the action items that you can take now to speed up Metamask. Hopefully this makes your crypto-gaming experience smoother.

Note: This article tells you what to do you when your MetaMask extension is slow, i.e. the browser or extension becomes unresponsive. If you are looking to speed up a specific transaction from your MetaMask, see MetaMask’s official help site on how to speed up or cancel a transaction.

1. Reset Metamask Account

The very first thing to do with a slow Metamask account is to remove the transaction history. As the number of your Metamask transactions increases, your Metamask becomes slower. I think most users have already noticed that. If you have many transactions, the first thing is to ‘remove’ all these transactions. Since all your previous transactions are already sent to the Ethereum blockchain, there is no need to keep a history in your local Metamask.

How to reset Metamask Account?

Here are the steps you need to follow to reset your Metamask account:

First, click on your Metamask plugin to open the app. Below is how it appears on Brave. It is similar in Chrome and Firefox as well.

When the app opens, click on the circle on the top right corner of the app to display a menu.

Metamask Settings Screen

From the menu, click on the Settings at the bottom.

Metamask Reset Account Screen

Scroll to the bottom of the Settings, and you’ll see an option for ‘Reset Account’. Click on this button.

Metamask Confirm Reset Account

Metamask will ask you for a confirmation, along with telling you what exactly this ‘Reset Account’ feature is. “Resetting your account will clear your transaction history.” Click on the RESET to confirm. This will remove your transaction history and make Metamask run much faster.

2. Change Ethereum Network, and Change it Back

After you’ve done the reset account, you can try this other trick for slow Metamask. You will need to switch the network that your Metamask connects to. Don’t worry – you’ll change it right back to the main Ethereum network.

First, open your Metamask in your browser as shown above, and click on the dropdown at the top of the app that says ‘Main Ethereum Network’.

Metamask Network

Now change this to another option, such as Ropsten Network. You’re telling your Metamask to connect to a Ropsten node now instead of the Mainnet Ethereum.

Metamask Ropsten Network

After this, switch back to the ‘Mainnet Ethereum’ option to connect back to the mainnet Ethereum network.

This step ‘resets’ your Metamask connection to the main Ethereum network. It helps with, for example, flushing your transactions. You may have noticed for example that sometimes Metamask doesn’t tell you that the transaction has been confirmed. This step will force Metamask to recompute the transactions and give you a notification for when your transaction has been broadcast. Some DApps like CryptoKitties also recommend this step for some errors on their application. This is a handy little trick to not only speedup your Metamask but also update its state.

3. Disable, then Re-enable Metamask

In your browser extension/add-on section of Options/Settings, disable and then re-enable Metamask. This will likely ask for your password again, so make sure that you have your Metamask password handy. This step is helpful to ‘reload’ the Metamask extension, and helps speed up Metamask by restarting it, thus getting rid of its current state and restarting.

Here’s how you would do it on Brave, as an example (similar steps for Chrome and Firefox)

Go to Settings (three horizontal lines on the top right of your Brave browser), and click on Preferences

Brave Preferences for Metamask

Then go to Extensions on the left side, where you’ll see Metamask installed.

Brave Extensions Metamask

Under the ‘enabled’ column, disable (just click to disable) and then re-enable Metamask.

Note that when you do this, you’ll be asked to enter your password again. Make sure you have that handy before trying this step.

4. Close and Re-Open Browser

Sometimes your browser can take up an ungodly amount of memory on your RAM. Chrome is especially notorious for this. In these situations, Metamask will slow down as well. The best solution is to close your browser and re-open it. Make sure your browser settings are set to re-open all your sites, so you don’t lose your tabs when you restart.

When you do this, you will be asked for your Metamask password again.

In general, freeing up some computer RAM will make your Metamask faster as well, so close any large programs that you may not be using, especially browsers running in the background.

5. Change Browsers

As a final step, Metamask is available for Chrome, Firefox, and Brave currently. Try switching your browsers to make it faster. You can also exclusively use one of the browsers for all your DApp needs, and use another for regular browsing.

Hope at the end of this, you’re able to solve your slow Metamask issue. If not, feel free to leave a comment and we’ll try to help.

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Nov 292017

How to buy fractions of Ether
This is a guide to help you on how to buy fractions of Ether. Before starting, let’s get something straight – yes, you can buy fractions of Ether. Like other cryptocurrencies, Ethereum network’s native currency, Ether, is divisible. This is similar to how Bitcoin works, since you can also buy fractions of a Bitcoin. In fact, 1 Ether can be divided into 10^18 units, each unit called a Wei. Wei is the smallest fractional unit of Ether.

To write it out, 1 Wei = 0.000000000000000001 ETH. As you can see, there is ample scope to buy fractions of Ether!

As a quick refresher, the Ethereum network is created similar to Bitcoin, but has a Turing complete smart contract platform. This allows programmers to create decentralized applications that can be arbitrary complex. Bitcoin has a much more limited support for smart contracts. Ether is also fueling a lot of token sales, or ICOs (Initial Coin Offerings). To participate in many of these ICOs, you need to buy Ether first, to send to a smart contract.

You’ll need less than 1 ETH if you want to pay for gas for popular DApps like Uniswap, say. In that case, say you want to convert some token into USDC, you don’t need to buy a full Ether. Instead, you can just buy smaller fractions of Ether to pay for the gas fee. Also, as the price of Ether goes up, it may make sense for individuals to buy less than 1 ETH each time and dollar cost average into it instead of a big buy at a single point of time.

Buy Fractions of Ether on Online Exchanges

Now that we know how Ether fractions work, it’s time to buy some. The simplest way to buy fractions of Ether is via online exchanges. You will need to connect your bank account, so you can purchase Ether directly with fiat (USD, GBP, etc.) Here are your options:

  • Coinbase: Coinbase is the simplest way to buy fractions of Ether. It is perhaps also the most trusted source of buying digital currencies and storing them. It’s a venture backed unicorn (valued over $1 billion). The San Francisco based company started in the US, but is fast expanding in many other countries as well. If Coinbase is available in your country and you’re new to crypto-assets, Coinbase is your best bet. The list of countries that Coinbase supports are: Singapore, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Jersey, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Malta, Monaco, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, San Marino, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, Canada, United States, . You can see the full list here.
  • Bithumb: This is a Korean exchange, which at the time of this writing, does the most Ether trading volume in the world! Part of the reason for high volume is there’s no fees, so the volumes get inflated. If you’re in Korea, you don’t have access to Coinbase, so Bithumb would be your best bet.
  • Buy ETH with BTC: If you have some Bitcoin already and want to convert that to Ether, then there are other options to follow, such as Bittrex, Poloniex, and Binance. This may be a good strategy even if you’re completely new to crypto-assets. In many places, it is easier to buy Bitcoin with local fiat money, and then convert into Ether, than buying Ether directly with local fiat.

Photo Credit: Flickr