Bitcoin: A new era of currency

I get tired of having to take my credit card out to pay for something. My wallet is bulky and it’s hard to find the card I need or the wad of cash in my wallet. What if I told you that there is a new way to purchase items and services? It’s called Bitcoin.

You’re probably wondering what the heck a “bitcoin” is. The bitcoin is a new kind of all-digital currency. Originally published in 2009 under the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto, it’s implemented as a completely decentralized “crypto-currency” that allows peer-to-peer payments, transfers and receipt within hours without a middleman. Because of

Image from Creative Commons.
This may be what our future holds, Bitcoins. Image from Creative Commons.

its function as peer-to-peer concept, the Bitcoin system isn’t controlled or owned by anyone. Instead, it’s governed by the internet and its users.

Bitcoin is managed through programs called “wallets.” You can obtain a “wallet” by downloading one from bitcoin’s main website, or you can open an online “wallet” through certain websites. Security is perhaps the biggest issue with having personal “wallets” online. The one issue with having a wallet versus using an online one is security. You can have multiple wallets which is made possible by the key system used. The wallet provides you with two keys: one private and one public key. It’s always a good idea to do research for which type of wallet would suit you.

Because the monetary value of the currency is governed by its users, there have been steady increases and decreases in its value. At present, currency sits at a whopping $126.77 to 1BTC. That’s lower than what it was in early Sept.

Bitcoins can be purchased from certain money exchanges that specifically exchange for bitcoin. Despite its widespread use, Paypal says bitcoin actually violates the company’s terms of service. Because of that, it’s wise to transfer from a bank account and not a debit or credit card. Since bitcoin is new, user should be us.

People who obtain bitcoins use them for many different reasons. There are users who use bitcoins as an alternative to the dollar. These users try to get bitcoins noticed in a positive way so they can be used without being frowned upon. Then, of course, there are the people who use them as a “crypto” currency. They are usually people like hackers who use bitcoin’s anonymity to do illegal things. There have been a few articles around the internet stating such incidences as the shutdown of Silk Road, the famous website that was black market for illegal substances.

Bitcoin is a powerful concept and has the potential for being a powerful currency as well. It will be interesting to see it grow in the future.