Bitcoin is a digital currency that is secured and maintained by a peer-to-peer network of millions of users online, making it a decentralized, fast, secure, cheap, and efficient as a digital currency.
Bitcoin is a digital currency that can be acquired via traditional currency, trades, or work, and can be used for transactions in an ever-expanding network of users and merchants. It is legitimized and maintained by a peer-to-peer network of millions of users online, making it a decentralized, fast, secure, cheap, and efficient digital currency that exists independent of any centralized gatekeepers such as governments, regulated markets, or corporations.
Bitcoin is the first and still dominant example of what is known as a cryptocurrency, which allows users to possess and use a Bitcoin balance on a ledger that is encoded and distributed throughout the network of users, which form the blockchain. Computations performed by user computers throughout the blockchain are constantly validating and updating the ledger, arriving at a consensus based on encrypted groups of transactions which are packed into blocks and constantly sent throughout the network.
It is designed to be unhackable because there is no centralized server or database to crack into; attempting to change the distributed ledger would require control of a prohibitively large number of computers on the network. Bitcoin is also open-source, meaning that the code that the technology is built upon is not owned by any one individual or company. In fact, Bitcoin was invented by an anonymous individual, or group of individuals, known only by the name Satoshi Nakamoto, who wrote a white paper describing how to build this secure and decentralized digital currency, and then chose never to reveal him or herself (or themselves) again.
Many people now invest in and use Bitcoin and other digital currencies for reasons that range from idealism and independence to profit and practicality. Many of the world’s largest institutions are now in research and development to find more uses for blockchain technology, and it is obvious that this it has the potential to disrupt and revolutionize a wide range of industries.
Bitcoin is usually abbreviated BTC, but there have been a few offshoots, known as forks, which have brought new, tweaked blockchains to the crypto marketplace, developed using the open-source code and rules for the Bitcoin blockchain by community members who felt that changes would be beneficial.
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