Bitcoin is a new currency that was created in 2009 by an unknown person using the alias Satoshi Nakamoto. Transactions are made with no middle men – meaning, no banks! There are no transaction fees and no need to give your real name. More merchants are beginning to accept them. You can buy webhosting services, pizza or even m Buy on an Exchange. Bitcoins are stored in a “digital wallet,” which exists either in the cloud or on a user’s computer. The wallet is a kind of virtual bank account that allows users to send or receive bitcoins, pay for goods or save their money. Unlike bank accounts, bitcoin wallets are not insured by the FDIC. Though each bitcoin transaction is recorded in a public log, names of buyers and sellers are never revealed – only their wallet IDs. While that keeps bitcoin users’ transactions private, it also lets them buy or sell anything without easily tracing it back to them. That’s why it has become the currency of choice for people online buying drugs or other illicit activities.
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1 BITCOIN = 423 DOLLARS
Several marketplaces called “bitcoin exchanges” allow people to buy or sell bitcoins using different currencies. Mt. Gox is the largest bitcoin exchange.anicures.
People can send bitcoins to each other using mobile apps or their computers. It’s similar to sending cash digitally.
People compete to “mine” bitcoins using computers to solve complex math puzzles. This is how bitcoins are created. Currently, a winner is rewarded with 25 bitcoins roughly every 10 minutes.
Ƀ is not a logo but a symbol: Unicode Character U+0243 can be used any Unicode text editor. This unicode character was originally used as a phonetic symbol to represent or transcribe the sound [β]. Thus the context of this use does not allow any confusion with the Bitcoin currency.
Facts: The baht (sign: ฿; code: THB) is the currency of Thailand. Thailand’s population is 67 million people (vs. Bitcoin’s debated 1–4 million users) and they’re not really cool with the community trying to “steal” their sign.
THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT BITCOIN
Special About the Bitcoin System:
The Bitcoin is a system which allows you to do anonymous currency transactions and no one will come to know about the payment or about all other info related to the payment, including who sent it, who received it, etc.
Satoshi did it by making the system – a peer-to-peer network – controlled by no central authority but run by a network of contributors and freedom enthusiasts, who donated their time and energy to this innovation. Essentially, people can do money transactions and no authority or organization will come to know about it. Satoshi Nakamoto was so talented that he even solved the problem of double spending of digital currency in his system
We can make many copies of digital data, e.g. people copy software and sell it as counterfeit or pirated copies. We may face the same problem with digital currency – one can copy the digital currency (let’s suppose USD100) and use it as many time as he/she like (as many notes of USD100). Satoshi solved this problem by showing all transactions in a public list. Whenever a new transaction is made, its validity is checked by confirming from the list that the digital currency was not used before. This way, no one can copy the currency and use it for more than one time. It’s a simple but effective idea to stop double spending of the same bitcoin.
The public listing only shows the transaction ID and the amount of currency transferred. You will be anonymous in the system because you don’t need to provide any of your personal details like your name, address, email, phone number, etc. In comparison, when you use payment gateways like Paypal you have to give up all these personal details.
Using of Bitcoin:
Bitcoins are kept in a digital wallet which you can keep in your computer, or on a website online, which will manage and secure your wallet for you. You can have as many wallets and bitcoin addresses (where you receive money from others) as you like. What’s more, you can use Bitcoin software on top of Tor to prevent anyone from tracking your IP address – total anonymity guaranteed!
At this very moment, 10.71 million Bitcoins are in existence, which is like 207.929 million USD worth! In fact, the Canadian government is working on their own crypto-currency, named MintChip. (a glance:)
Mintchip, In one day, more than 45,000 transactions of a total of BTC 2.5 million (worth of USD48.5 million) is handled by the bitcoin network.
Spending Bitcoins is a bit easier. You can send Bitcoins to a person, buy goods, or donate to non-profit foundations who accept it, such as Wikileaks, P2P Foundation, Operation Anonymous, Free Software Foundation, Archive.org.
You can send Bitcoins to anyone once you know their bitcoin address.
For merchandise, you can buy products from merchants that accept Bitcoins. Example – BitcoinDeals.
ALTERNATIVES TO BITCOIN
Market Capitalization: $600 million
Of all the competing cryptocurrencies, Litecoin is the most similar to Bitcoin. It has been thought of as silver to Bitcoin’s gold, or MasterCard to Bitcoin’s Visa. It has also managed to gain the second-highest market capitalization amongst digital currencies. One key difference includes a different hashing algorithm designed so that mining Litecoins won’t result in a similar hardware arms race to the one Bitcoin is currently involved in. Litecoin mining these days involves rigs of video cards, or GPUs. It’s similar to how Bitcoin mining was a few years ago, until its ASICs (application-specific integrated circuits) were designed from the ground up to mine Bitcoins. Litecoins also feature faster confirmation times due to shorter and faster block rewards. It’s scheduled to produce 84 million Litecoins, four times as much as Bitcoin’s 21 million.
Market Capitalization: $131 million
Peercoin’s distinguishing feature is that is uses a method called proof of stake as part of its mining, or as Peercoiners often like to say, “minting.” Proof-of-stake rewards minters for the Peercoins they hold over time. This is measured in “coin days,” one coin day being equivalent to holding one coin for one day. It’s similar to how a kilowatt hour is defined as using a kilowatt over the course of one hour. So the more coins you hold over a longer time, the more Peercoins you receive through minting. This is in contrast to most cryptocurrencies’ proof-of-work mining, which rewards miners based on how much computing power they contribute to the keeping track of transactions. Peercoin also uses proof-of-work mining in conjunction with proof-of-work minting, although Peercoin is programmed to eventually rely only on proof-of-work mining. The maximum limit for the number of these coins is 2 billion. This is so much higher than Bitcoin’s 21 million that it encourages inflationary pressure, which counterbalances the deflationary pressure caused by everyone trying to mint Peercoins and holding onto them.
Price: 4.1 cents
Market Capitalization: $40 million
Nxt is most similar to Peercoin in that is utilizes proof of stake to generate more coins. But unlike Peercoin, it uses proof of stake exclusively. The only way to get more Nxt coins is to hold them or exchange them in a process dubbed “forging,” in contrast to Bitcoin mining and Peercoin minting. This has a “green” appeal in that it requires no massive, power-consuming hardware rigs, just a small program that will run on pretty much any modern computer. This also has the practical appeal of not requiring users to invest in the extra hardware and electricity. Instead, you merely exchange something for your initial Nxt coins. Nxt’s developers also pride themselves on having written the Nxt code from scratch, while most alternative cryptocurrencies were developed from using Bitcoin’s code as a basis.
Market Capitalization: $52 million
Namecoin is similar to other cryptocurrencies, but with the additional feature of being a way to register domain names. Instead of .com or .net, Namecoin domain names have the .bit extension. Any method of registering and controlling a domain name is called a domain name system, or DNS. The current method of domain name registration is regulated by a nonprofit organization called the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, or ICANN. Because ICANN is a centralized organization, it ultimately has power over domain names and can shut down websites for political or other reasons. But because Namecoin is a decentralized network, no one is in control of it. Just like Bitcoin is a decentralized network that takes the power away from banks and other financial institutions, Namecoin is a decentralized network that takes the power away from ICANN or any other centralized DNS organization. Namecoin is also traded for its own sake, just like Bitcoin. It’s just like any other cryptocurrency but with the added feature of a decentralized DNS system, which amounts to more “intrinsic value,” which everyone is looking for.
Price: 0.045 cents
Market Capitalization: $11 million
Dogecoin is a cryptocurrency inspired by the “Doge” Internet meme. Compared with the other cryptocurrencies, Doge is most similar to Litecoin. It uses scrypt, the same cryptographic function as Litecoin. A total of 100 billion Dogecoins will ever be mined, which is even more than Peercoin. Yet because the block reward is so large and frequent (every minute), Dogecoin miners have already mined almost 25 billion Dogecoins, almost 25% of the total. While Doge gets my vote for the best Internet meme of 2013, you would think that a cryptocurrency wouldn’t manage to go far based on novelty. Yet Dogecoin’s market capitalization is almost $7 million.