Part 1: Crypto 101

The first in my new series about Crypto, NFT's, and the upcoming Metaverse!

 

Part 1: The Beginning: Bitcoin


Bitcoin was created by Satoshi Nakamoto, a pseudonymous person or team who outlined the technology in a 2008 white paper. It’s an appealingly simple concept: bitcoin is digital money that allows for secure peer-to-peer transactions on the internet.

  • Unlike services like Venmo and PayPal, which rely on the traditional financial system for permission to transfer money and on existing debit/credit accounts, bitcoin is decentralized: any two people, anywhere in the world, can send bitcoin to each other without the involvement of a bank, government, or other institution.

  • Every transaction involving Bitcoin is tracked on the blockchain, which is similar to a bank’s ledger, or log of customers’ funds going in and out of the bank. In simple terms, it’s a record of every transaction ever made using bitcoin.

  • Unlike a bank’s ledger, the Bitcoin blockchain is distributed across the entire network. No company, country, or third party is in control of it; and anyone can become part of that network and review the transactions.

  • There will only ever be 21 million bitcoin. This is digital money that cannot be inflated or manipulated in any way. (Ha, just kidding the whales have figured out how to move their bitcoins around and effect supply and demand).

  • It isn’t necessary to buy an entire bitcoin: you can buy just a fraction of one if that’s all you want or need.


 

Next there was: Ethereum


Ethereum was initially described by Vitalik Buterin in late 2013 as a result of his research and work in the Bitcoin community. Shortly thereafter, Vitalik published the Ethereum white paper, where he describes in detail the technical design and rationale for the Ethereum protocol and smart contracts architecture. In January 2014, Ethereum was formally announced by Vitalik at the The North American Bitcoin Conference in Miami, Florida, USA. Around that time, Vitalik also started working with Dr. Gavin Wood and together co-founded Ethereum. By April 2014, Gavin published the Ethereum Yellow Paper that would serve as the technical specification for the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM). By following the detailed specification in the Yellow Paper, the Ethereum client has been implemented in seven programming languages (C++, Go, Python, Java, JavaScript, Haskell, Rust), and has resulted in better software overall.

 

The Future Of Crypto

Stablecoins


What are Stablecoins? Did you know there is already a US Dollar Coin?

USDC is a stablecoin pegged to the price of a US dollar. Its goal is to make transactions faster and cheaper than traditional payments while reducing the volatility typically associated with cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. Stablecoins, which have their price fixed to a reserve asset (often the US dollar), are one of the most popular and versatile classes of cryptocurrency to emerge in the last few years. USD Coin (USDC), as its name would suggest, is one such dollar-pegged cryptocurrency. USDC is always redeemable on a one-to-one basis for US dollars. As of August 2021, more than $20 billion in USDC has been minted.


How does USDC work?

USDC runs on Ethereum, which is a decentralized, programmable blockchain that allows developers to create a huge range of apps and tokens. USDC was created to be a highly useful form of digital money that wouldn’t see value swing dramatically in the middle of a transaction. It is backed by dollar-denominated assets of at least equal fair value to the USDC in circulation, in segregated accounts with US regulated financial institutions. You can buy USDC via exchanges like Coinbase, and hold it in any Ethereum compatible wallet. There are no fees for transferring a US dollar to USDC. The launch of USDC was powered by a collaboration between Coinbase and Circle through the co-founding of the CENTRE Consortium.

Stablecoins like USDC have a wide range of uses. You can:

  • Send money cheaply and near-instantly anywhere in the world without a traditional bank account (a huge improvement over wire transfers which can be exp