Although The history of Bitcoin is short (emerged in 2009), much has rained since its launch. Its creation has always been surrounded by a certain halo of mystery, because it is not known who created it. Satoshi Nakamoto is just a pseudonym used by the person or people who gave birth to the project.
But still today, eight years after its creation, Bitcoin is not entirely mainstream. Many have been surprised that the creators of the ramsonware that affected Telefónica and other companies would like to charge in Bitcoin. Let’S Explain everything about this coin.
Bitcoin, Technology and economics
Bitcoin is a very curious technological idea. By Combining computer networks, cryptography and software it is possible to create a virtual currency completely distributed, without needing a central entity that emits and controls it. Eight years later, cryptography remains resilient and the use of Bitcoin has been shot.
The economy behind this coin is the same as the one behind anyone: scarcity and trust. That Is, there is a solid foundation for a Bitcoin to cost money, at least as solid as the one that sets gold prices.
And Although Bitcoin was the first Criptomoneda there are many others. True, Bitcoin is still the most popular although lately others like Ethereum are rising from value by other value added services they offer.
Bitcoin, how to get them
It Is clear that if we want to get euros it Is enough to work in a country whose currency is euros or go to a change of currencies office. But How do we manage to have Bitcoin? Of course not working, since it is not an office currency in any country in the world.
The beginnings of any coin are complicated. There Has to be a issuing bank, people have to trust and accept the currency and little by little it is getting into circulation. Instead with Bitcoin there is no issuer, distributed computers that watch for correct transactions get, from time to time, coins as a prize. This is called mining, and it is the way money is created with the Bitcoin.
But before we put our computer to work to create money I have to say that mining is crazy right now. Those who earn money with this technique have clusters of computers with dedicated graphics cards and in areas where electricity is cheap or even subsidized. Making money with mining is a thing of the past.
Then? Where do we get Bitcoin? Well, like in the real world, in the currency exchange houses. On The Internet there are many and allow us to change normal money (euros, for example) by Bitcoins. Coinbase is a change site (and purse, as we will see later) quite popular.
Bitcoin, how to save them
Now we come to the big question: how and where are the Bitcoins kept? Well, the Criptomonedas like Bitcoin are completely virtual. To access them you originally had to use a software. This software allows us to see the balance that we have in our account and to make and receive transfers.
The good Thing about Bitcoin is that it is an open protocol, there are many software to manage our money. There is for Windows, Linux, Mac, Android, iOS… I personally recommend taking it on the mobile and inside Android I like Android Wallet.
However using a software has a danger. If for some reason the device is damaged or deleted or formatted, we will lose all the money. Let’S Say that with Bitcoin the money is in “The Bitcoin Cloud” (the so-called Blockchain) and what saves the software is a copy of the key to access it. If We use a software it is advisable to back up these keys.
Another option to take control of our Bitcoin is to use a Web wallet. In this way a Web page is in charge of saving our keys and we will access to our accounts with a user and password. Basically What these webs do is the function of a bank.
Coinbase is a good option for this, which also allows you to buy and sell Bitcoins. The only bad thing is that if we use this method we lose some of the grace of having Bitcoins, use a completely decentralized system without relying on trust in any entity. No One can requisition our money without stealing the keys. Instead if we have the money on a website we have to trust her.
Bitcoin, quote Swings
Now It may seem that the Bitcoin is very expensive, more than 2000 euros to change. And that’s not a good time to invest in it. But in the past we have seen similar moments, and the Council should be the same: careful because it is a rather speculative good.
Bitcoin has suffered a lot of potholes along the way. The first was the closure of the Silk Road, a market for illegal exchanges that the FBI closed in 2013. The Transaccciones were made with Bitcoins and the price collapsed.