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Essential pointsBitcoin is an electronic currency known as a cryptocurrencyThe peer-to-peer technology underpinning it's known as the blockchain a people ledger of transactionsBitcoins can be stored in a virtual wallet and used to Purchase other currencies or actual world goods
Where once a single bitcoin was worth a few cents it's now worth about $9,200 per coin (November 2017), creating millionaires in the process.There have been many reported instances where people mined thousands of relatively worthless bitcoins as a hobby years ago, only to now realise they're rich.One IT employee even threw out a hard disk containing 7,500 bitcoins.
All this is done without a central authority or bank.Who generated itBitcoin and the blockchain technology was created by someone under the pseudonym of Satoshi Nakamoto and released as a working beta in 2009. Satoshi's true identity remains a puzzle as he vanished from the scene in 2010 after seemingly handing over the reins into Gavin Andresen, the chief scientist at the Bitcoin Foundation.Over the years numerous individuals have promised to become Satoshi, including Australian computer scientist Craig Wright.
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If the web site gets hacked or someone gets your login details they could access and drain your funds from the exchange.There is no way to get a transaction to be revoked or revoked if a burglar sends your bitcoins for their wallet.After buying your coins you need to transfer them into 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 store the personal key on your computer or online then hackers can never break in and get your funds.
Bitcoin means different things to different individuals. For many, it is a future of moving currency untied to any central bank. To others, it's a purely electronic entity of questionable value and doubtful origin. However, what is Bitcoin, in the most elementary senseIn most casual conversations, you can eliminate knowing that bitcoin is, essentially, an electronic currency.
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In fact, it is two much more complex things.Bitcoin has been with us since 2009, when a person (or group) under the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto introduced a platform (Bitcoin, uppercase) that hosts an electronic currency (bitcoin, lowercase). Bitcoin the stage is built on the concept of evidence of work information which is expensive and time-intensive to create but can be easily verified.
To mine a bitcoin, a computer has to finish a complicated algorithm, essentially going through the job of an extensive calculation in exchange for some newly minted currency. That bit of digital currency is worth whatever the market decides through distribution and demand.Transactions are connected to some users Bitcoin speech, which is stored on its own general ledger, known as the blockchain.