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What is cryptocurrency? – Definition from WhatIs.com

A cryptocurrency is a digital medium of exchange that uses encryption to secure the processes involved in generating units and conducting transactions.

Cryptocurrencies are a subset of digital currencies and, as such, have no physical representation. They may beused for online orin-person transactions with any vendors who accept them.In-person transactions using cryptocurrencies aretypically conductedthrough mobile paymentfrom a digital wallet.

There are hundreds of cryptocurrencies around the world. Among them, Bitcoin is the most prominent example — in fact, other cryptocurrencies are sometimes referred to as altcoins, as in alternatives to Bitcoin. The Bitcoinprotocol enables peer-to-peer (P2P) exchange in a decentralized system that, unlike conventional currencies,is not associated with any financial institution or government.

Bitcoin-to-Bitcoin transactions are conducted through anonymous, heavily encryptedhashcodes across a peer-to-peer network.Each users digital wallet maintains their Bitcoins. The wallet also stores all addresses the user sends and receives Bitcoins from, along with aprivate keyknown only to the user. The P2P network monitors and verifies Bitcoin transfers.

Other cryptocurrencies include Litecoin, primecoin, Namecoin and Feathercoin.

Paul Vigna provides a crash course on cryptocurrencies:

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A Beginner’s Guide to Cryptocoin Mining: What You Need to …

Mining cryptocoinsis an arms race that rewards early adopters. You might have heard of Bitcoin, the first decentralized cryptocurrency that was released in early 2009.Similar digital currencies have crept into the worldwide market since then, including a spin-off from Bitcoin called Bitcoin Cash. You can get in on the cryptocurrency rush if you take the time to learn the basics properly.

If you had started mining Bitcoins back in 2009, you could have earned thousands of dollars by now. At the same time, there are plenty ofways you could have lost money, too.Bitcoinsare not a good choice for beginning miners who work on a small scale. The current up-front investment and maintenance costs, not to mention the sheermathematical difficulty of the process, just doesn’t make it profitable for consumer-level hardware. Now, Bitcoin mining is reserved for large-scale operations only.

Litecoins, Dogecoins, and Feathercoins, on the other hand,are three Scrypt-based cryptocurrencies that are the best cost-benefit for beginners.

Dogecoins and Feathercoins would yield slightly less profit with the same mining hardware but are becoming more popular daily. Peercoins, too, can also be a reasonably decent return on your investment of time and energy.

As more people join the cryptocoin rush, your choice could get more difficult to mine because more expensive hardware will be required to discover coins. You will be forced to either invest heavily if you want to stay mining that coin, or you will want to take your earnings and switch to an easier cryptocoin. Understanding the top 3 bitcoin mining methods is probably where you need to begin; this article focuses on mining “scrypt” coins.

As a hobby venture,yes, cryptocoin mining can generate a small income of perhaps a dollar or two per day. In particular, the digital currencies mentioned above are very accessible for regular people to mine, and a person can recoup $1000 in hardware costs in about 18-24 months.

As a second income,no, cryptocoin mining is not a reliable way to make substantial money for most people. The profit from mining cryptocoins only becomes significant when someone is willing to invest $3000-$5000 in up-front hardware costs, at which time you could potentially earn $50 per day or more.

If your objective is to earn substantial money as a second income, then you are better off purchasing cryptocoins with cash instead of mining them, and then tucking them awayin the hopes that they will jump in value like gold or silver bullion. If your objective is to make a few digital bucks andspend them somehow, then you just might have a slow way to do that with mining.

Smart miners need to keep electricity costs to under $0.11 per kilowatt-hour;mining with 4 GPU video cards can net you around $8.00 to $10.00per day (depending upon the cryptocurrency you choose), or around $250-$300 per month.

Now, there is a small chance that your chosen digital currency will jump in value alongside Bitcoin at some point. Then, possibly, you could find yourself sitting on thousands of dollars in cryptocoins. The emphasis here is on “small chance,” with small meaning “slightly better than winning the lottery.”

If you do decide to try cryptocoin mining, definitely do so as a hobby with a very small income return. Think of it as “gathering gold dust” instead of collecting actual gold nuggets. And always, always, do your research to avoid a scam currency.

Let’s focus on mining scrypt coins, namely Litecoins, Dogecoins,or Feathercoins. The whole focus of mining is to accomplish three things:

You will need ten things to mine Litecoins,Dogecoins, and/or Feathercoins.

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Crypto Conundrum: Bullish Bitcoin Price Action Halts Altcoin …

Overnight last night, Bitcoin price made another strong bullish advance through resistance at $5,400, following a massive crypto rally earlier in the month that set the bullish tone for the rest of the months price action. While Bitcoin is more bullish than its been since its all-time high of $20,000 back in December 2017, altcoins, which had been experiencing massive gains in price over the last few months, have suddenly turned extremely bearish.

Across social media, crypto analysts are issuing warnings on how to handle altcoin investments in the face of renewed bearish sentiment, and offer insight into what this means for the rest of the crypto market.

While Bitcoins first large movement through resistance at $4,200 that resulted in a nearly $1,000 upward movement over the course of an hour brought altcoins along with it for the ride, this most recent move has caused an increasing amount of bearish sentiment surrounding Bitcoins crypto cousins.

Related Reading | 2019 Crypto Alt Season Kicks Off With Over 20 Altcoins Doubling in Value

Many altcoins are still posting small percentage gains across the board in USD value, though nearly the entire market in value relative to Bitcoin has sank considerably. Any alts that only have a trading pair with BTC were hit exceptionally hard. Nano, Tezos, and a few other outliers managed to grow in relation to BTC value, however the rest of the market is a sea of red.

One particular crypto analyst, DonAlt, in a tweet hinted at the downside potential for altcoins as falling as much as 30-50% as Bitcoin rallies further. The trader says that alts nuking is a good thing as itll make the next alt season that much sweeter.

Some altcoins, such as Ethereum and Ripple, have underperformed relative to Bitcoin over the last few months. If Ripple fell another 30-50% from here, itd set new bear market lows, as Bitcoin enters what could be the start of a bull run.

Another prominent trader has recommended that crypto investors cease buying the dip across altcoins, and instead suggests that traders sell each bounce at support.

In an EOS chart accompanying the tweet, support is clearly shown as being broken. And each time support broke previously on the chart, resulted in a deep decline for EOS. While the exact price action wont play out across all altcoins, many charts do appear similar in structure, and often the entire altcoin market moves in parity.

Related Reading | Bullish Bitcoin Price Formation Hints At Short Term Move Above $6K

For a few weeks there, crypto analysts were watching Bitcoin dominance for a break below 50% which could have sparked an all-out altcoin season, while Bitcoin consolidated further. Instead, BTC dominance rebounded and is currently sitting at 53.5% which is responsible for the bleeding witnessed across the altcoin space.

If DonAlt is right about the next altcoin season being that much sweeter due to the impending decline across the alt space, further accumulation at the bottom of the coming range could end up being a profitable investment for the long term as crypto markets begin to build hype once again.

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Bitcoin price | index, chart and news | WorldCoinIndex

About

Bitcoin is the worlds first virtual digital currency underpinned by a completely decentralized blockchain technology also known as the Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT). Bitcoin was first created in 2009 by an anonymous identity of Satoshi Nakamoto. Bitcoin allows for peer-to-peer transactions and is completely free of any third-party involvement like financial institutions or central banks. The Bitcoins blockchain network maintains a history of all the transactions made and facilitates instant funds transfer with minimal transaction fees required to cover the cost of network operation. The total supply of Bitcoin is fixed at 21 million coins and its smallest fractional unit is called as Satoshi. Each Satoshi is a hundred millionth of a Bitcoin which means 100,000,000 Santoshi = 1 BTC. Bitcoins are generated by a process known as mining which involves solving of complex mathematical algorithms. The miners involved in the mining process look after the Bitcoin network security and validate each transactions taking place on the network. Bitcoin can be exchanged with other digital currencies or fiat currencies. Bitcoin is used as a means of payment by over 100,000 vendors and merchants.

Bitcoin is the worlds first cryptocurrency which works on a completely decentralized network known as the blockchain. The blockchain network consists a link of blocks that are secured using cryptography and record all the transactions. Bitcoin was first presented to the world in 2009 by an anonymous identity known as Satoshi Nakamoto. As Bitcoin works on a decentralized network, it is completely free from the involvement of third-party financial institutions or central banks. The Bitcoin blockchain facilitates instant peer-to-peer transactions at minimum transactions fees required to maintain the network. The total number of Bitcoins is fixed at 21 million with its smallest unit being referred to as Satoshi. Each Satoshi represents a hundred millionth part of Bitcoin which means that 100,000,000 Santoshi = 1 BTC. Additional Bitcoins are generated by a process known as mining. Bitcoins are mined by professional miners solving complex computational equations. For each Bitcoin mined, the miners are rewarded with either more coins or transaction fees. The miners also validate all transactions on the Bitcoin network as well as look after the network security. Bitcoin can be exchanged with fiat currencies or other digital currencies. There are over 100,000 merchants and vendors accepting Bitcoin all over the world.

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After Paris, Encryption Will Be a Key Issue in the 2016 …

When the Democratic presidential contenders gathered on the debate stage in Des Moines, Iowa, on Saturday, just hours after a series of terrorist attacks in Paris left at least 129 people dead, the candidates spent the early portion of their time on stage examining issues related to national security. They spoke of boots on the ground, regime changes, what role the United States ought to play in the fight against ISIS, and whether or not they use the term radical Islam.

But curiously, throughout the lengthy discussion, the one issue that was never mentionednot oncewas encryption. Thats lucky, at least for the candidates. As the world continues to reel from the Paris attacks, the debate over whether tech companies like Apple and Google are allowed to fully encrypt users communications will, no doubt, become one of the central dramas of the national security conversation going into the 2016 presidential race. It may also be among the toughest issues for the candidates, especially Democrats, to navigate.

Encryption may be among the toughest issues for the candidates, especially Democrats, to navigate.

Just yesterday, CIA director John Brennan said that he hoped the Paris attacks would serve as a wakeup call to those who oppose government surveillance in favor of personal privacy.

There are a lot of technological capabilities that are available right now that make it exceptionally difficult both technically as well as legally for intelligence security services to have insight that they need to uncover it,” he said, adding that terrorists have gone to school to figure out ways to evade intelligence officials.

Brennan attributed that fact, in part, to Edward Snowdens disclosures of the National Security Agencys bulk data collection programs, saying they tipped would-be terrorists off to surveillance tactics. In the past several years, because of a number of unauthorized disclosures and a lot of hand-wringing over the governments role in the effort to try to uncover these terrorists, he said, there have been some policy and legal and other actions that make our ability, collectively, internationally, to find these terrorists much more challenging.

This, of course, is not the first time weve heard these concerns from government officials. Just a day before the Paris attacks, the NSAs former general counsel, Matt Olsen, told an audience gathered in Des Moines that after Snowden came forward, the agency lost track of terrorists. Meanwhile, FBI director James Comey has been an outspoken critic of encryption, arguing that it enables criminals to go dark.

Whether encryption is really the security risk the government makes it out to be, of course, is still up for debate. We at WIRED have debated it plenty. Now it’s time for the presidential candidates to do the same.

Until now, the Democratic candidates in particular have been light on detail about where they stand on encryption and surveillance. This reticence stands to reason. By aligning themselves too closely with Washington’s intelligence community, they could alienate their Silicon Valley base, which is increasingly powerful in politics. But if they cater too much to the interests of tech companies such as Apple and Google, they could lose favor among voters who increasingly see national security as the country’s most pressing issue.

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has walked an uneasy line on the subject of surveillance in the past. On one hand, she was a supporter of the controversial PATRIOT Act as a senator back in 2001, a decision that’s been widely criticized by Bernie Sanders’ camp. This summer, she also said that cybersecurity legislation such as the Cybersecurity Information Sharing Act, or CISA, which is already highly unpopular among privacy advocates, doesn’t go far enough in encouraging tech companies to share information with the US government. And during the first debate, she said Snowden “stole very important information that has unfortunately fallen into a lot of the wrong hands,” and that he shouldn’t return home “without facing the music.”

‘I think there are really strong, legitimate arguments on both sides.’

Hillary Clinton

At the same time, however, she has endorsed the USA Freedom Act, which would end the NSA’s bulk data collection program, calling it “a good step forward in ongoing efforts to protect our security and civil liberties.” And at a conference earlier this year, Clinton told Re/Code’s Kara Swisher that encryption is “a classic hard choice,” but she hedged before offering up her plan for what to do about it. “I would be the first to say I don’t have the answer,” she said. “I think there are really strong, legitimate arguments on both sides.”

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, on the other hand, has been far more outspoken in his opposition of government surveillance. He received a round of applause at the first Democratic debate for voting against the PATRIOT Act and has said that, as president, he would shut down the NSA’s surveillance program altogether.

But national security is considered Sanders’ major weak spot. Even those who support his stance on inequality sometimes question his ability as commander-in-chief. The more fearful Americans become of the threat ISIS poses, the weaker Sanders’ stance on surveillance may appear to the electorate beyond Sanders’ base. After all, a recent poll showed that 56 percent of voters said they would give the government access to some personal data if it meant protecting the country from a terrorist attack.

On the other side of the aisle, candidates like Jeb Bush, Marco Rubio, Carly Fiorina, Donald Trump, and Chris Christie have all spoken out against encryption and the need for government surveillance. The one notable exception, of course, is Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, who said at a conference last week that he believes governments should require warrants to access people’s communications. Still, that policy doesn’t apply to companies like Apple, which promises users that their data is encrypted so that it can’t be accessed even with a warrant.

The battle over how to balance security and privacy, of course, is nothing new in politics. Just last month, the Obama administration backed away from legislation that would have forced tech companies to decrypt messages for law enforcement. The move was seen as a win for technologists and privacy advocates alike.

Those same advocates are now hoping that fear won’t cause politicians to resume the fight against encryption. “The Paris attacks are absolutely tragic, but the response must not be to undermine cybersecurity for digital services on which many millions of people depend,” said Harley Geiger, senior counsel and advocacy director for the Center for Democracy & Technology. “Weakening encryption will also not prevent organized groups from using strong encryption. Difficult-to-crack encryption and apps will continue to be available on the Internet, even if governments seek to ban them.”

And yet, as calls for stronger national security spread post-Paris, candidates that support encryption may face added pressures from both the public and their Republican opponents to reevaluateor at the least, delineatewhere they stand on encryption. And when they do, they may find it’s not so easy to keep both sides happy.

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Quantum computing is a marathon not a sprint | VentureBeat

If you watch the technology headlines you might think something called quantum computing is the Next Big Thing. In January, USA Today declared IBMs new quantum computer one of the four most wow worthy announcements at CES, the annual gadget fest in Las Vegas. Gartner also listed quantum computing as one of the top technology trends for 2019, joining fan favorites like blockchain and virtual reality.

Ive spent more than 25 years as a physicist researching quantum computers machines that store and process information on individual atoms or particles, like photons and Ive started a company that is building them. I am convinced quantum computing is in fact a breakthrough technology that offers the only known way to attack some of the worlds hardest problems in medicine, transportation, computer security, and other areas we havent yet foreseen.

We must be clear, however, about what is and isnt happening next. The big quantum computing discoveries that will most impact society are still years away. In the meantime, we will see breathless announcements of records broken as the technology rapidly develops. These incremental advances are important for government, which has a role in encouraging this research, as well as for industries that need to start developing ways to use quantum computers as they become more powerful. But too much hype risks disillusionment that may slow the progress.

The first thing to know about quantum computers is that they are not a faster, better version of the computers we have now. Youll never trade in your laptop or smartphone for a quantum version. Quantum computers almost certainly wont run social networks, animate Pixar movies, or keep track of airline reservations. They solve different problems in different ways.

Quantum computers were proposed in 1982 by Richard Feynman, the Nobel prize winning physicist, who worried that conventional computers could never tackle problems in quantum mechanics, the well-established theory that predicts the behavior of small isolated particles such as atoms or electrons. Today, we do use conventional computers to simulate quantum models of material and chemical processes, but these simulations grind to a halt when faced with all the possible arrangements of electrons in even a small molecule or chunk of material.

Feynmans idea was simple: build a computer that stores information on individual particles later named qubits that already follow the very rules of quantum mechanics that seem to perplex conventional computers.

Whats the difference? Ordinary computers think in certainties, digitizing every aspect of the world to well-defined numbers. Quantum computers probe all possibilities, constantly updating the probabilities of multiple scenarios. Add more qubits, and they can consider exponentially more scenarios. A quantum computer is programmed to consider all these possibilities and narrow them down to just a few, and then when the output is measured, it can tell us information about all those scenarios. It is critical that a quantum computer not be measured or looked at while it considers the uncountable number of possibilities. For that reason, qubits are like senators before a controversial vote: They shouldnt reveal their position until they are forced to.

Our world is filled with uncertainty, and quantum computers can be very helpful in selecting the best of several options. Thus a bank wouldnt use a quantum computer to track checking accounts. When you look at your balance, you want a single answer you can count on. But the bank might use a quantum computer to estimate how much money you will have in your account a year from now, based on the probability you will get a raise or get fired, whether your teenager will crash the car, if the stock market will crash, and how these factors interact.

To be clear, nobody has yet written a program that makes financial projections on a quantum computer. One reason is that, until now, there havent been any quantum computers to try them out on. But after a lot of work, thats changed. Over the last few years, corporate, academic, and government groups have built machines that can isolate and manipulate particles or other types of qubits well enough to handle basic programs.

It takes exacting precision and extreme conditions to isolate and control qubits. Some quantum computers freeze solid-state circuits to close to absolute zero. Others uses electric fields to levitate atoms in a vacuum that is more pure than deep space, while using lasers to manipulate them with an accuracy of 1/10,000 the width of a human hair. These atomic qubits in particular can scale to much larger systems because they are all the same isolated atomic element, perfectly replicable, and they are so well isolated that they never reveal their qubit states until forced to.

In 3-5 years, these machines will perform certain calculations that would not be possible using ordinary computers. But it may be 5-10 years before any of these machines have the capacity and accuracy to solve useful problems. Along the way, I worry that some who read about quantum computing being the next big thing will feel let down and lose interest. We cant let that happen. Government needs to continue to support basic research, as Congress did passing the National Quantum Initiative Act last year. And the industrial community needs to start working with the current generation of quantum computers so they can develop the know-how and the software that will give them an edge as the technology improves.

Even then, you wont have a quantum computer on your desk or in your pocket. But you may start to see better drugs, more flexible materials, and organizations running more efficiently. All that will definitely be wow worthy.

Christopher Monroe is the Bice Zorn Professor of Physics and Distinguished Professor at the University of Maryland and co-founder and CEO of IonQ, a quantum computing startup.

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Analyst: Bitcoin (BTC) Likely to Soon See Massive Volatility …

After losing its major upwards momentum roughly ten days ago when Bitcoin failed to break above $5,400, BTC has been able to hold steady above $5,000 and has tepidly clawed its way upwards towards $5,300.

Now, one analyst believes that Bitcoin will incur just enough buying pressure to propel its price up towards $5,800, at which point it will face significant selling pressure that may lead to a large drop.

At the time of writing Bitcoin is trading up marginally at its current price of $5,300, up slightly from its daily lows of $5,230.

Although Bitcoin has been able to post minor gains over the past several days, it is important to note that is strongest confirmed level of resistance currently exists at $5,400, as BTC has failed to make any decisive advances past this level without being swiftly pushed lower.

Despite this, Bitcoin may be currently incurring strength that will allow it to surge up towards $5,800 at which point it will likely find greater levels of selling pressure.

XC, a popular cryptocurrency trader on Twitter, shared his thoughts on Bitcoin in a recent tweet, explaining that he expects BTC to see another scam move up to the upper-$5,700 region, at which point it will be pushed back down.

Seeing weak bearish moves all across the board here, think we get one more scam move up with a harsh peak around 5777, he explained.

One pattern that traders and analysts alike have been closely watching is the golden cross that Bitcoin is currently en route to forming. Previously, this pattern was only hypothetical, but it now appears that BTC will in fact make this formation, which would be highly bullish for the cryptocurrency.

One analyst believes that the formation of this pattern will lead to massive volatility that could either send Bitcoins price surging upwards or reeling downwards depending on whether bulls or bears take this opportunity to strike.

$BTC. Golden cross trajectory now April 24. (Was previously April 25). Should be interesting. Lot of hype that this is the bull run signal. If I were a bear or bull whale, thats when Id strike. Bull whale rides momentum of GC traders. Bear whale destroys their morale, B.Biddies, another popular crypto analyst, explained in a recent tweet.

Assuming that there are not any massive price movements over the next several days that change the timing of the golden cross formation, investors and traders alike should not take the current stability in the crypto markets for granted, as it may not last for very long.

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Bitcoin Cash – Wikipedia

Bitcoin Cash is a cryptocurrency.[2] In mid-2017, a group of developers wanting to increase bitcoin’s block size limit prepared a code change. The change, called a hard fork, took effect on 1 August 2017. As a result, the bitcoin ledger called the blockchain and the cryptocurrency split in two.[3] At the time of the fork anyone owning bitcoin was also in possession of the same number of Bitcoin Cash units.[3] The technical difference between Bitcoin Cash and bitcoin is that Bitcoin Cash allows larger blocks in its blockchain than bitcoin, which in theory allows it to process more transactions per second.[4]

On 15 November 2018 Bitcoin Cash split into two cryptocurrencies.[5]

Contents

Bitcoin Cash is a cryptocurrency[6] and a payment network.[7] In relation to bitcoin it is characterized variously as a spin-off,[6] a strand,[8] a product of a hard fork,[9] an offshoot,[10] a clone,[11] a second version[12] or an altcoin.[13]

The naming of Bitcoin Cash is contentious; it is sometimes referred to as Bcash.[14]

Rising fees on the bitcoin network contributed to a push by some in the community to create a hard fork to increase the blocksize.[15] This push came to a head in July 2017 when some members of the Bitcoin community including Roger Ver felt that adopting BIP 91 without increasing the block-size limit favored people who wanted to treat Bitcoin as a digital investment rather than as a transactional currency.[16][17] This push by some to increase the block size met a resistance. Since its inception up to July 2017, bitcoin users had maintained a common set of rules for the cryptocurrency.[16] Eventually, a group of bitcoin activists,[12] investors, entrepreneurs, developers[16] and largely China based miners were unhappy with bitcoin’s proposed SegWit improvement plans meant to increase capacity and pushed forward alternative plans for a split which created Bitcoin Cash.[11] The proposed split included a plan to increase the number of transactions its ledger can process by increasing the block size limit to eight megabytes.[16][17]

The would-be hard fork with an expanded block size limit was described by hardware manufacturer Bitmain in June 2017 as a “contingency plan” should the Bitcoin community decide to fork; the first implementation of the software was proposed under the name Bitcoin ABC at a conference that month. In July 2017, the Bitcoin Cash name was proposed by mining pool ViaBTC.

On 1 August 2017 Bitcoin Cash began trading at about $240, while Bitcoin traded at about $2,700.[3]

In 2018 Bitcoin Core developer Cory Fields found a bug in the Bitcoin ABC software that would have allowed an attacker to create a block causing a chain split. Fields notified the development team about it and the bug was fixed.[18]

In November 2018, a hard-fork chain split of Bitcoin Cash occurred between two rival factions called Bitcoin ABC and Bitcoin SV.[19] On 15 November 2018 Bitcoin Cash ABC traded at about $289 and Bitcoin SV traded at about $96.50, down from $425.01 on 14 November for the un-split Bitcoin Cash.[5]

The split originated from what was described as a “civil war” in two competing bitcoin cash camps.[20][21] The first camp, led by entrepreneur Roger Ver and Jihan Wu of Bitmain, promoted the software entitled Bitcoin ABC (short for Adjustable Blocksize Cap) which would maintain the block size at 32MB.[21] The second camp led by Craig Steven Wright and billionaire Calvin Ayre put forth a competing software version Bitcoin SV, short for “Bitcoin Satoshi’s Vision,” that would increase the blocksize to 128MB.[19][21]

Controversy

The arguments have devolved over three or four years of bitter debate, the principles are real and they are important to preserve, but a lot of the drama has nothing to do with principles anymore. A lot of this debate is now more about hurt feelings. Its about bruised egos. Its about things that were said that cant be unsaid, insults that were exchanged, and personalities and ego.

Andreas Antonopoulos, “The Verge”

There are two factions of bitcoin supporters, that support large blocks or small blocks.[4] The Bitcoin Cash faction favors the use of its currency as a medium of exchange for commerce while the bitcoin supporting faction view Bitcoin’s primary use as that of a store of value.[4] Some bitcoin supporters like to call Bitcoin Cash Bcash, Btrash, or simply, a scam, while Bitcoin Cash advocates insist that their implementation is the pure form of Bitcoin.[4]

Bitcoin Cash trades on digital currency exchanges including Bitstamp,[22] Coinbase,[23] Gemini,[24] Kraken,[25] and ShapeShift using the Bitcoin Cash name and the BCH ticker symbol for the cryptocurrency. A few other exchanges use the BCC ticker symbol, though BCC is commonly used for Bitconnect. On 26 March 2018, OKEx removed all Bitcoin Cash trading pairs except for BCH/BTC, BCH/ETH and BCH/USDT due to “inadequate liquidity”.[6] As of May2018[update], daily transaction numbers for Bitcoin Cash are about one-tenth of those of bitcoin.[6]

By November 2017 the value of Bitcoin Cash, which had been as high as $900, had fallen to around $300, much of that due to people who had originally held Bitcoin selling off the Bitcoin Cash they received at the hard fork.[15] On 20 December 2017 it reached an intraday high of $4,355.62 and then fell 88% to $519.12 on 23 August 2018.[26]

As of August 2018, Bitcoin Cash payments are supported by payment service providers such as BitPay, Coinify and GoCoin.[27] The research firm Chainanalysis noted that in May 2018, 17 largest payment processing services such as BitPay, Coinify, and GoCoin processed Bitcoin Cash payments worth of US$3.7 million, down from US$10.5 million processed in March.[27]

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Bitcoin heads for mass market adoption as Millennials get onboard

Bitcoin is in the last stage of the bear market, the accumulation phase, according to a report from digital assets fund Adamant Capital.

The current sentiment has recovered from capitulation and the blockchain shows us that Bitcoin HODLers are committing for the long-term again. This is confirmed by our drawdown and volatility analyses, the report states.

While lower prices are still possible, Bitcoins fundamentals are gaining momentum. Embraced by Millennials, its ecosystem is developing at rapid clip, both as a decentralised bottom-up disruptive technology, and as an uncorrelated, highly liquid financial asset for institutional portfolios around the world.

The long term risk-reward ratio for Bitcoin is currently the most favourable of any liquid investment in the world. Adamant Capital reckons that it will trade in a range of $3,000 to $6,500 after which we foresee the emergence of a new bull market.

Supported by over 10 years of infrastructure development, we believe the stage is set for mass market adoption in the coming five years. In our assessment, during this phase (its Windows moment) Bitcoin will become widely recognised as a portfolio hedging instrument and reserve asset, and will begin making significant inroads as a payment network, the report concludes.

These sentiments were recently echoed by Nigel Green, Founder and Chief Executive of financial advisory organisation deVere Group.

Im now calling that the market has bottomed and the so-called crypto winter has come to an end, he said.

I believe it will now move higher over the next few weeks and months, making steady gains for investors. As the largest cryptocurrency by market cap, this will have a positive impact on prices in the wider crypto sector.

Last months dramatic jump will attract many investors who have been sitting on the sidelines, he believes. And it will also reignite institutional interest.He added that the crypto space is on the verge of a true global breakout..Adoption is increasing all the time. This is evidenced not only in the financial sector, in which major banks are increasingly looking at blockchain andcrypto,but with big names within the tech and retail sectors too.

There is increasing acceptance that cryptocurrencies are inevitably the future of money, and the environment is now right for a sustained climb in prices.I think we could reasonably see the Bitcoin price hitting $7,000 in the next few months, he concluded.

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Major Bitcoin hard and soft forks. Where are they now?

Bitcoin forks are defined as changes in the protocol of the Bitcoin network. Forks can also be defined as the situations that occur when two or more blocks have the same block height. A fork, in essence. influences the validity of the rules. Usually there are significant changes associated to hard forks, even though any type of fork usually brings change to the protocol.

Forks are typically conducted in order to add new features to a blockchain or to reverse the effects of hacking or catastrophic bugs. Forks require consensus to be resolved or else a permanent split emerges.

A soft fork is a backward compatible method of upgrading a blockchain. In other words, a soft fork is software upgrade that is backward compatible with previous versions of the software. Soft forks do not require nodes on the network to upgrade to maintain consensus. Thats because all blocks on the soft-forked blockchain follow the old set of consensus rules as well as the new ones.

However, blocks produced by nodes conforming to the old set of consensus rules will violate the new set of consensus rules, and as a result, will likely be made stale by the upgrading mining majority. This is because for a soft fork to work, a majority of miners need to recognise and enforce the new set of consensus rules. If this majority is reached, then the older network will fall into disuse, with the newer blockchain gaining recognition as the true blockchain.

Examples of soft forks are

A hard fork, on the other hand, is a permanent divergence from the previous version of a blockchain. A new set of consensus rules are introduced into the network that is not compatible with the older network. In other words, a hard fork can be thought of as a software upgrade that is not compatible with previous versions of the software. All network participants are required to upgrade to the latest version of the software in order to continue verifying and validating new blocks of transactions.

Under a hard fork, blocks that are confirmed by nodes that are not yet upgraded to the latest version of the protocol software will be invalid. Nodes running the previous version of the software will have to follow the new set of consensus rules in order for their blocks to be valid on the forked network. In the event of a hard fork, if there is still mining support for the minority chain, then two blockchains can continue to exist simultaneously.

Hard forks can usually fall into two subcategories, they can either be a planned hard fork or a contentious hard fork.

Date

Amount Encrypted

2009/1/3

2017/8/1

Y

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The first major Bitcoin hard fork that took place, as we can see above, was Bitcoin Cash. The top-3 hard forks by market size are:

Each hard fork aimed to increase Bitcoins throughput, either by increasing the block-size, or by increasing the block frequency. Other projects like Bitcoin gold and Diamond tried to implement alternative consensus algorithms, GPU based, to further decentralisation of miners.

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Major Bitcoin hard and soft forks. Where are they now?

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