Image via bitcoin.org

If you haven’t heard of Bitcoin, chances are you’ve lived under a rock for the past few years. Back in 2009, someone using the pseudonymous name of Satoshi Nakamoto invented bitcoin using thirty-one thousand lines of code. As of yet, no one knows who this mysterious person is that created the cryptocurrency that has changed our entire banking structure. If you haven’t joined the Bitcoin revolution, now is the perfect time.

*Read the whitepaper here.

Bitcoin is a worldwide payment system; a digital currency that has no centralized government or banking institution. These convenient, untraceable and invisible coins are created from a process known as mining. Mining can be explained as a record-keeping service that uses computers to carry out processes to validate a blockchain. Basically, the computer uses an algorithm to solve a complicated mathematical problem. After each process, the miner (user) is rewarded with cryptocurrency. Not only do these ledgers (recordkeeping services) prevent fraud; the digital money supply is growing.

*The fundamental concept of buying and selling bitcoins is done anonymously.

You don’t have to understand the technology of how bitcoin works to understand the value and importance of this digital asset. This peer-to-peer exchange has made government-backed banks more and more obsolete. From investments to a world-recognized currency, this system is maintained by the people, not the banks. Not to mention, fewer fees are associated with the bitcoin technology than banks. This is a game changer for everyone in the world.

 

Image via 99 Bitcoins
Image via 99 Bitcoins

 

While the Bitcoin technology was the implementation of the first digital currency payment system, bitcoin (with a lowercase b) was the first adopted coin used as a cryptocurrency. The number of cryptocurrencies on the market has surged to over a thousand, with much more of them expected to in the near future.  Many of these altcoins are still valued at just a few pennies while some others are now worth several thousand dollars.

Below is a list of the top 10 digital coins, by value, on the market (as of today.)

  1. Bitcoin – $15,017.70 – The original bitcoin with a substantial increase in value since 2009.
  2. Bitcoin Cash$3,104.77 – This coin recently skyrocketed in value after being added to the Coinbase exchange.
  3. Dash – $1,274.98 – Instant, private and secure; this coin is growing fast.
  4. Ethereum – $735.41 – While this coin is for developers, anyone can invest and use them on the network.
  5. Byteball Bytes – $657.90 – This coin allows you to condition when/if the payee receives the digital money.
  6. ZCash – $618.28 -This coin has added privacy, guaranteeing the validity of transactions.
  7. Monero – $398.79 – This coin is gaining popularity because of its privacy, security, and no traceability.
  8. Bitcoin Dark – $355.50 – This coin is swapping to Komodo, completion is expected by January.
  9. Veritaseum -$354.58 – *This is not an exchange but a platform for conducting peer-to-peer exchanges.
  10. Bitcoin Gold – $330.35 – This is the coin that hard forked from the bitcoin blockchain.

 

Image via Coinbase

 

The past few years have shown that we, as a society, have more faith in the currency based on math equations than government-backed financial institutes. There are already over 100,000 merchants worldwide that now accept bitcoin as payment. While we wait for the rest of the world to adopt this new currency, it won’t take long before we are able to make purchases in almost any store worldwide with digital coins.

*The first real-world bitcoin transaction was to Papa Johns, for the purchase of two pizzas, costing 10,000 bitcoins. As of today, that is a US dollar value of $151,528,926.87. Yes, that is over 151 million dollars!

To purchase cryptocurrencies, you just need a credit/debit card, bank or a PayPal account. There are multiple cryptocurrency exchanges to choose from, below is a list of a few.

 

Coinbase– This is one of the most popular digital exchange platforms on the market. The only downside to Coinbase is that they only allow purchasing and buying of bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin and the newly added Bitcoin Cash.
*Coinbase is expected to add several more crypto coins to their exchange in 2018.

CEX.IO -This reliable and secure exchange allows users to not only buy/sell cryptocurrencies but also allows marginal trading with 1:2 and 1:3 leverages. Many users have taken advantage of this to place bets on the crypto market.

Coinigy – This a Portfolio Manager and trading platform that allows users to trade on over 45 markets worldwide. They promise 100% encryption and security. Millions of users are using this platform to trade and make money trading.

Cryptopia – This popular exchange platform (based out of New Zealand) allows you to sell anything to anyone in exchange for cryptocurrencies, anywhere in the world.

BitMEX – This advanced trading platform allows users to exchange cryptocurrencies, with no expiration and low fees on trades.

XCoins – Offers instant transactions and even allows PayPal as a form of payment. This platform assists many lenders with identity verification for borrowers.

Local Bitcoins – This is an exchange marketplace for buying and selling bitcoins to and from each other. This platform also allows using PayPal for exchanging, in addition to bank transfers and gift card codes.

Coinmama –  If you’re looking to just buy bitcoin, this platform is easy for purchasing using your credit/debit card, delivered straight to your Bitcoin Wallet.

Simple FX – This trading platform is available in over 140 countries and uses the motto “keep it simple.” With so many options for trading and investing, it shouldn’t be difficult to make cryptocurrency transactions.

BitPay – This company is mainly for retail and e-commerce, allowing businesses to accept Bitcoin payments. However, They also offer a bitcoin wallet to users and a BitPay Card. This a great option for loading money directly into your bitcoin wallet.

Bitlio – This platform allows users to buy/sell cryptocurrencies instantly. They also offer a Gift Card, for sending Bitcoins as a gift to anyone.

*There are many wallets available for storing your crypto coins. You can also invest in a secure hardware wallet.

Image via CryptoMoney
Image via KryptoMoney

 

In addition to purchasing Bitcoins and altcoins, you can also try mining. There are several of these sites as well. Some platforms require power consuming computers, while others allow for web-based mining. This won’t make you rich overnight but can bring in some extra money if you’re willing to give it a try. Below is a list of some of the most popular mining platforms on the internet to get you started in the bitcoin revolution.

 

JSECoin – This mining platform is for website developers as well as anyone wanting to implement browser-based mining. Here is an article explaining this new cryptocurrency. *This is also a free mining service.

Miner Gate – This is a mining pool that allows for merged mining of multiple crypto coins.

Hash Flare  – This is a cloud-based mining pool that allows users to choose which pools without the need to buy expensive equipment.

Genesis Mining -This is a multi-algorithm mining service for both bitcoin and altcoins.

EOBot – This is both a cryptocurrency exchange and a mining platform. You can also choose your payout in any displayed cryptocurrency.

 

Image via LightTrains
Image via LightTrains

Satoshi means wisdom or reason while Nakamoto means central force.  Bitcoin could be said to be the Central Force of Wisdom. Permanently embedded into the first 50 bitcoins, known as the “genesis blocks” is a brief line of text that reads “Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks.” It doesn’t matter that Nakamoto wrote in flawless English or claimed to be a Chinaman while writing with a British style flow. What matters is the social dynamics of this currency. Everyone should take advantage of this digital phenomenon and join the bitcoin revolution while it is still a young currency with a definite future. It promises to be resilient compared to any currency we have ever known.

 

 

“There are 3 eras of currency: Commodity based, politically based, and now, math based.”
~Chris Dixon, Technology Investor

 

Post Author: Misty

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