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Key pointsBitcoin is a digital currency known as a cryptocurrencyThe peer-to-peer technology underpinning it's known as the blockchain a public ledger of transactionsBitcoins can be stored in a digital wallet and used to buy other currencies or actual world goods
Where once a single bitcoin has been worth a few cents it is now worth about $9,200 per coin (November 2017), creating millionaires in the process.There have been many reported cases where people mined thousands of comparatively useless bitcoins as a hobby years back, only to now realise they are rich.One IT employee even threw out a hard drive containing 7,500 bitcoins.
This is done without a central authority or bank.Who created itBitcoin and also the blockchain technology was made by someone under the pseudonym of Satoshi Nakamoto and released as a working beta in 2009. Satoshi's true identity remains a mystery as he disappeared from the scene in 2010 after seemingly handing over the reins to Gavin Andresen, the chief scientist in the Bitcoin Foundation.Over years numerous people have promised to be Satoshi, including Australian computer scientist Craig Wright.
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In case the website gets hacked or someone gets your login details that they could get and drain your funds from the exchange.There is no way for a transaction to be reversed or recovered if a burglar sends your bitcoins for their wallet.After buying your coins you need to transfer them to a secure digital pocket made by you and not hosted online.You can even write down the pocket's personal key on a sheet of paper (that is known as a newspaper wallet) and stick it in a safe.If you don't save the personal key on your pc or online then recipients can never break in and access your funds.
Bitcoin means different things to different people. For some, it is a future of moving currency untied to any central bank. To the others, it is a purely electronic entity of questionable value and doubtful origin. But what's Bitcoin, in the most elementary senseIn most casual conversations, you can eliminate knowing that bitcoin is, essentially, a digital currency.
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In reality, it is two considerably more complex things.Bitcoin has been with us since 2009, when a person (or group) under the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto introduced a platform (Bitcoin, click site uppercase) that hosts a digital currency (bitcoin, lowercase). Bitcoin the platform is built on the concept of proof of work information that is expensive and time-intensive to create but can be readily verified.
To mine a bitcoin, a computer has to finish a complicated algorithm, essentially going through the work of an extensive calculation in exchange for some newly minted currency. That piece of digital currency is worth whatever the market determines through distribution and demand.Transactions are connected to a users Bitcoin address, which can be saved on its own general ledger, known as the blockchain.