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Glossary

Here’s a handy list of word definitions that are commonly used in the cryptocurrency sphere in alphabetical order. If you see a link from a word you’re not familiar with in the text on this site, it will bring you here to find a definition.

“Etoro” This in investing platform located at www.etoro.com. It’s a very simple interface that allows easy trading of around a dozen major cryptos and takes care of wallets and converting backwards and forwards between fiat and cryptocurrency. I often recommend it for users when first starting, but it suits more advanced traders too.

“Fiat Money” This is money you or I are traditionally familiar with. Literally translated from the Latin meaning ‘Let it be done’, it is money that, in itself, has no real value other than the faith of the bearer. The British Pound or American Dollar would be classed as fiat money.

“ICO” Stands for ‘Initial Coin Offering’. Much like companies raise capital through selling off shares when float, new coins and currencies often offer coins and preferential rates to new investors when starting. ICOs are, at the time of writing, outside any regulation and, as a result, many have been poor quality, badly organised or downright fraudulent.

“Masternode” A device, usually a server,  holding a pre-determined number of a coins of a Proof of Stake currency designed to lock in and stabilise a network. The people who have bought and locked those coins are seen as contributors to the currency’s network and are rewarded with payments in that currency for doing so.

“Proof of Stake (POS)” is a concept of running a coin’s network whereby a person can mine (or validate) block transactions according to how many coins he or she holds. In other words, the coins in wallet owned by a miner, the more mining power he or she has.

“Proof of Work (POW)” is a system of running a coin’s network that requires some work from the service requester, usually meaning processing time by a computer. The idea is to create an economic measure to deter denial of service attacks and other service abuses such as spam or double spending on a network.

“Wallet” Usually a piece of software (but can also be hardware) installed on your devices that holds the coins of the currency you own. Some wallets support more than one coin, and some have different functionality, but unless you’re going through a trading platform, you will need a wallet of some sort to be involved with cryptocurrencies. Think of it as a software version of the wallet in your pocket!

 

The future of Bitcoin (A mid 2019 view)

I’ve now been in the ‘crypto space’ for a couple of years actively (and a couple of years prior to that poking it with a stick) and someone asked me the other day if my views on Bitcoin in particular had changed in that time. That got me thinking. Have they?

Well, yes. And, no. That’s the short answer, but I suspect they wanted a more detailed answer, so I shall attempt to appease them.

Continue reading “The future of Bitcoin (A mid 2019 view)”

Withdraw your own money? You must be joking.

This actually happened to me today, word for word. There’s a great case for Bitcoin in my view, but sometimes the banks just like to make that case even more pronounced, don’t they?

It’s no secret I am a cryptocurrency advocate. I still think Bitcoin will retain the number one spot overall as a way to make infrequent, large purchases and/or a store of value, but I also think a handful of other currencies will exist for fast, day to day transactions for different reasons such as XRP, Litecoin and Monero. However, I don’t believe any of them will actually replace the banking system and nor should they. For various economic and monetary policy reasons, there needs to be sovereign currencies. But perhaps the fact that there is a real, global competitor that is becoming increasingly accessible will force the powers that be to examine how their currency is maintained. Well, maybe. Or maybe I’m just being an optimistic hippie-esque revolutionary again. Continue reading “Withdraw your own money? You must be joking.”

Was I wrong about Wirex?

This is a tough blog for me to write.

I may have to publicly admit I was wrong about something I was very passionate about. I don’t like being wrong, I like admitting it even less (as my other half will testify to!), but the facts are indisputable. Let me explain. Continue reading “Was I wrong about Wirex?”

If you build it, they will come.

It’s easy to forget just how young the crypto ‘industry’ is.

I even do it myself sometimes. Compared to many people I was in quite late, specifically the autumn of 2013, and even then I poked it with a stick rather than got actively involved. It was just so damned hard to buy anything and I wasn’t even sure I understood it properly. It all seemed a mass of messy information – much of it contradicting itself – and it took real perseverance to get anywhere. Yet, despite all of this, I could see the potential. It would surely only be a few short years before Bitcoin, and perhaps a few select altcoins, would be the primary method of transacting globally. Continue reading “If you build it, they will come.”

Don’t mention Bitcoin …

Having been refused advertising back in the day by Exchange & Mart for wanting to use a mobile number instead of a landline, then barred from Ebay for life in a bizarre turn of events despite having perfect stats for over 10 years and, finally, having my ads removed from Gumtree because I offered Bitcoin as a payment option, I now find that I am on the Facebook naughty list for promoting my most recent book.

The book, an innocent little affair called ‘How to Explain Bitcoin to your mum‘ is an easy to understand lighthearted, yet thorough, explanation of what Bitcoin is and how it works, written for a complete beginner. As the title suggests, it was written with my mum in mind who doesn’t understand or use the internet and doesn’t own a mobile phone. Just try explaining Bitcoin in THOSE circumstances! (I’m please to report, incidentally, that the book did have the desired effect and my mum no longer thinks I am going to prison for operating a giant worldwide scam.) Continue reading “Don’t mention Bitcoin …”