You've probably been hearing a lot about Bitcoin recently and are wondering what's the big deal? Most of your questions should be answered by the resources below but if you have additional questions feel free to ask them in the comments. It all started with the release of the release of Satoshi Nakamoto's whitepaper however that will probably go over the head of most readers so we recommend the following videos for a good starting point for understanding how bitcoin works and a little about its long term potential:
Limited Supply - There will only ever be 21,000,000 bitcoins created and they are issued in a predictable fashion, you can view the inflation schedule here. Once they are all issued Bitcoin will be truly deflationary. The halving countdown can be found here.
Open source - Bitcoin code is fully auditable. You can read the source code yourself here.
Accountable - The public ledger is transparent, all transactions are seen by everyone.
Decentralized - Bitcoin is globally distributed across thousands of nodes with no single point of failure and as such can't be shut down similar to how Bittorrent works. You can even run a node on a Raspberry Pi.
Censorship resistant - No one can prevent you from interacting with the bitcoin network and no one can censor, alter or block transactions that they disagree with, see Operation Chokepoint.
Push system - There are no chargebacks in bitcoin because only the person who owns the address where the bitcoins reside has the authority to move them.
Low fee scaling - On chain transaction fees depend on network demand and how much priority you wish to assign to the transaction. Most wallets calculate on chain fees automatically but you can view current fees here and mempool activity here. On chain fees may rise occasionally due to network demand, however instant micropayments that do not require confirmations are happening via the Lightning Network, a second layer scaling solution currently rolling out on the Bitcoin mainnet.
Borderless - No country can stop it from going in/out, even in areas currently unserved by traditional banking as the ledger is globally distributed.
Portable - Bitcoins are digital so they are easier to move than cash or gold. They can even be transported by simply memorizing a string of words for wallet recovery (while cool this method is generally not recommended due to potential for insecure key generation by inexperienced users. Hardware wallets are the preferred method for new users due to ease of use and additional security).
Bitcoin.org and BuyBitcoinWorldwide.com are helpful sites for beginners. You can buy or sell any amount of bitcoin (even just a few dollars worth) and there are several easy methods to purchase bitcoin with cash, credit card or bank transfer. Some of the more popular resources are below, also check out the bitcoinity exchange resources for a larger list of options for purchases.
Here is a listing of local ATMs. If you would like your paycheck automatically converted to bitcoin use Bitwage. Note: Bitcoins are valued at whatever market price people are willing to pay for them in balancing act of supply vs demand. Unlike traditional markets, bitcoin markets operate 24 hours per day, 365 days per year. Preev is a useful site that that shows how much various denominations of bitcoin are worth in different currencies. Alternatively you can just Google "1 bitcoin in (your local currency)".
Securing your bitcoins
With bitcoin you can "Be your own bank" and personally secure your bitcoins OR you can use third party companies aka "Bitcoin banks" which will hold the bitcoins for you.
If you prefer to "Be your own bank" and have direct control over your coins without having to use a trusted third party, then you will need to create your own wallet and keep it secure. If you want easy and secure storage without having to learn computer security best practices, then a hardware wallet such as the Trezor, Ledger or ColdCard is recommended. Alternatively there are many software wallet options to choose from here depending on your use case.
If you prefer to let third party "Bitcoin banks" manage your coins, try Gemini but be aware you may not be in control of your private keys in which case you would have to ask permission to access your funds and be exposed to third party risk.
Note: For increased security, use Two Factor Authentication (2FA) everywhere it is offered, including email! 2FA requires a second confirmation code to access your account making it much harder for thieves to gain access. Google Authenticator and Authy are the two most popular 2FA services, download links are below. Make sure you create backups of your 2FA codes.
As mentioned above, Bitcoin is decentralized, which by definition means there is no official website or Twitter handle or spokesperson or CEO. However, all money attracts thieves. This combination unfortunately results in scammers running official sounding names or pretending to be an authority on YouTube or social media. Many scammers throughout the years have claimed to be the inventor of Bitcoin. Websites like bitcoin(dot)com and the btc subreddit are active scams. Almost all altcoins (shitcoins) are marketed heavily with big promises but are really just designed to separate you from your bitcoin. So be careful: any resource, including all linked in this document, may in the future turn evil. Don't trust, verify. Also as they say in our community "Not your keys, not your coins".
Where can I spend bitcoins?
Check out spendabit or bitcoin directory for millions of merchant options. Also you can spend bitcoin anywhere visa is accepted with bitcoin debit cards such as the CashApp card. Some other useful site are listed below.
Mining bitcoins can be a fun learning experience, but be aware that you will most likely operate at a loss. Newcomers are often advised to stay away from mining unless they are only interested in it as a hobby similar to folding at home. If you want to learn more about mining you can read more here. Still have mining questions? The crew at /BitcoinMining would be happy to help you out. If you want to contribute to the bitcoin network by hosting the blockchain and propagating transactions you can run a full node using this setup guide. If you would prefer to keep it simple there are several good options. You can view the global node distribution here.
Just like any other form of money, you can also earn bitcoins by being paid to do a job.
You can also earn bitcoins by participating as a market maker on JoinMarket by allowing users to perform CoinJoin transactions with your bitcoins for a small fee (requires you to already have some bitcoins.
The following is a short list of ongoing projects that might be worth taking a look at if you are interested in current development in the bitcoin space.
One Bitcoin is quite large (hundreds of £/$/€) so people often deal in smaller units. The most common subunits are listed below:
one bitcoin is equal to 100 million satoshis
1,000 per bitcoin
used as default unit in recent Electrum wallet releases
1,000,000 per bitcoin
colloquial "slang" term for microbitcoin (μBTC)
100,000,000 per bitcoin
smallest unit in bitcoin, named after the inventor
For example, assuming an arbitrary exchange rate of $10000 for one Bitcoin, a $10 meal would equal:
For more information check out the Bitcoin units wiki. Still have questions? Feel free to ask in the comments below or stick around for our weekly Mentor Monday thread. If you decide to post a question in /Bitcoin, please use the search bar to see if it has been answered before, and remember to follow the community rules outlined on the sidebar to receive a better response. The mods are busy helping manage our community so please do not message them unless you notice problems with the functionality of the subreddit. Note: This is a community created FAQ. If you notice anything missing from the FAQ or that requires clarification you can edit it here and it will be included in the next revision pending approval. Welcome to the Bitcoin community and the new decentralized economy!
Inspired by the discussion on the cc subreddit (which I won't link to), I have some questions.
These Nakamoto coefficients aren't very comparable. Miners can reassign their hashrate at any time. Hashrate also has an ongoing, real expense. Nano votes can't be reassigned if the network is controlled, and there's no out of band "real" cost to acquire or maintain control. Thus, it's extremely misleading to try and compare these.
I would say that indeed hashrate has an ongoing, real expense so indeed, performing a 51% attack on Bitcoin will cost you on a per hour basis. On the other hand, get a 51% majority of Nano and you essentially block the network for eternity from what I understand. Bitcoin would most likely also collapse in value if a 51% attack was successfully performed, because even if it were to go offline for an hour and just a few doublespends were performed, it would undermine the store of value mantra quite strongly. Some sides notes here are, of course, that getting a 51% majority delegates for Nano is extremely difficult or expensive, as you need to buy up a large percentage of the supply yourself or you need to convince a lot of people to delegate to you, which hopefully only works if you build services that use Nano and therefore, in both cases, you have a vested interest in ensuring the Nano network remains valuable. On the other hand, Bitcoin miners have made large investments in ASICs which means they are strongly incentivized in the same sense, they want the Bitcoin network to remain valuable. Convincing either enough large Nano holders, or large swathes of Bitcoin hash power, would therefore be difficult. However, wouldn't it, generally, not be easier to find hash power outside the large miners currently mining than it would be to find Nano to give yourself a majority? I'm thinking that to get a 51% majority in Nano as said earlier you need to buy up enough of the outstanding Nano, or convince holders with a vested interest in the value of the Nano network. For Bitcoin however, I could rent out a chunk of Amazon's computing power and set up my own temporary mining operation to compete with the mining pools currently available. It would still be expensive, but, I am assuming, less so than taking the Nano option (even with current market caps). Is this a fair comparison? Or am I misrepresenting how easy it would be to get a Nano majority, or misrepresenting how difficult it would be to find alternative hash power to mine Bitcoin? Edit: Comparing to Bitcoin because it has the most hash power, this goes for all PoW crypto.
8MB - blocks containing string "8M" in their coinbase scriptSig (i.e. miners supporting block size increase to 8MB citation needed) ; BIP100 - blocks containing string "BV" + some digits in their coinbase scriptSig that is BIP100 (and others based on it), also includes blocks with string "BIP100" in coinbase ; BIP101 - blocks with version 0x20000007 as defined in BIP101 The current BitcoinGold hashrate is 796.65 KH/s, representing the global BitcoinGold network hashrate with a mining difficulty of 55.14 K at block height 656,608. View the BitcoinGold hashrate chart for all time historical hashrates . Mining-Hashrate ist eine wichtige Sicherheitsmetrik. Je mehr Hashing (Rechenleistung) im Netzwerk vorhanden ist, desto größer ist die Sicherheit und die allgemeine Widerstandsfähigkeit gegen Angriffe. Obwohl die genaue Hashing-Leistung von Bitcoin nicht bekannt ist, kann sie anhand der Anzahl der abgebauten Blöcke und der aktuellen Blockschwierigkeiten geschätzt werden. The Bitcoin hashrate chart provides the current Bitcoin hashrate history in graph format with an option to expand the Bitcoin global hashrate chart time frame back to 2009. Bitcoin Hashrate Now: 146.25 EH/s Oct 24, 2020 10:12 PM UTC - 146,248,343,505,995,000,000 H/s Bitcoin GOLD network hashrate reflects the overall performance of all miners in the btg network. Currently, Bitcoin GOLD network hashrate is 830.84 KS/s = 830 842 S/s. Network hashrate is calculated using the current network difficulty, the average block find time set by the cryptocurrency network and/or the effective block find time of the ...
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