Some things are worth doing for themselves. Cryptocurrency is one of them.
For starters, it’s a lot easier to use cryptocurrency than regular money. If you want to pay someone online, we have credit cards and PayPal, but nobody uses those except for very large purchases. Cryptocurrency solves the problem: it’s easy and convenient.
The main reason people use cryptocurrency is that they think it’s safe. That’s a flimsy reason to spend money, but people do think it’s safe, so that’s good enough for most people.
Cryptocurrency is a way of moving money that is not controlled by banks or governments. In this system, all the currency is controlled collectively by the people who use it. It’s like the Internet in the 90s, only instead of being a network run by and for nerds, it’s a network run by and for people.
It is important to understand the difference between “currencies” and cryptocurrencies. Currencies are like IOUs in a bank, except instead of being backed by gold, they’re backed by governments. Governments can print as much money as they want; this causes inflation, which makes your dollars worth less every year. But currencies are also traded in markets and have value based on supply and demand. Because of this, any currency can be made worthless at any time with no warning; one day you can find yourself paying five times more for everything than you did before.
Cryptocurrency is like an Internet-based version of cash; it’s an electronic payment system based on cryptography (a field of math used for secure communication). The difference between cryptocurrency and fiat currency is that no government controls it (there’s no central bank issuing new currency) and it isn’t subject to inflation (it doesn’t lose value over time). This means that
The current system of money is a kind of scam: it isn’t really what people think it is, and it doesn’t do as much as it should. The system works by taking a slice of your wealth, every time you make a purchase with some kind of credit card or e-wallet. Then the banks use that money to make more stuff. Or, if you are unlucky enough to have gone into massive debt to buy things you don’t need and can’t afford, they lend out the money in the hope that someone will pay it off in interest—the bankers’ version of looting.
The banks have all kinds of clever tricks to keep us paying their fees and interest. They may talk about “credit” being given by them—but they are not actually giving it; they are taking some of our wealth. It’s just a kind of trickery, like having your house repossessed while telling you that has nothing to do with them; they are taking your house because they own it (that’s what “mortgage” means).
Cryptocurrency is a form of cryptography on steroids—and here’s why I think that makes sense:
The headline says it all. Cryptocurrency is a revolution that will change the world. Many people have heard of Bitcoin and may have some knowledge of other cryptocurrencies, but if you are like most people, you don’t know much about them; you don’t really understand what they are or how they work.
We welcome new readers with questions and suggestions. Please leave a comment below and help us improve.
Cryptocurrency is a new way of moving money. It is also a new kind of asset: a currency that has no central government or authority behind it and no physical form. There’s no gold or silver, no paper bills and coins, no central bank. Cryptocurrency moves in cyberspace, not physical space.
Cryptocurrency is attractive to anyone who wants a low-cost and convenient way to move money into and out of cyberspace. In the past decade, we’ve seen the emergence of real money with real value, like gold and silver. And we’ve seen the rise of “virtual currencies,” like PayPal and credit cards. But there are big problems with the virtual currencies:
1 – The risk of theft from hacking
2 – The risk that governments will ban them for political reasons
3 – The risk that they’ll be banned because they’re too useful for criminals to resist
4 – They’re too difficult for ordinary people to understand
5 – They’re easy for criminals to use
6 – No one knows if they’re as good as real money
It’s hard to get people to take the trouble to download a new cryptocurrency that hasn’t been actively developed for another five years.
Because there is so much noise on the Internet, it can be hard to find what you are looking for. Even if you find it, it can be hard to know how to use it.
Luckily, your problems don’t depend on a search engine. You just need to know three things: how a cryptocurrency works, how to store it safely and how to spend it. The rest is all fine-tuning.
Cryptocurrencies have been around for decades; Bitcoin was created in 2008. But Bitcoin has never been widely used because of its high fees, slow transactions and poor customer support.
In the late 1990s, I was a software engineer at a big company in Silicon Valley. We made a lot of money, but when you looked at the numbers we didn’t seem like a very successful company. Everything seemed to be going wrong. Our customers were unhappy, our stock price was low and we had lots of problems with our products.
Then one day, in early 2000, my boss called me into his office. He handed me an envelope with $10,000 in cash. “This is for you,” he said. “It’s to do whatever you want.”
I was puzzled. “But why?” I asked. “What am I supposed to do? This is just money.”
“No,” he said, “it’s not just money.” And then he explained: He had made a mistake on his taxes, and this was his way of paying the bill without making any money for himself—just so that he could make sure all his employees got paid too.
That moment changed everything for me. It made me realize that no matter how much wealth we accumulated in Silicon Valley, it would never be enough unless everyone else around the world could share in it as well.