Bradley Acker

Unlocking the Secrets of Bitcoin: A Beginner's Guide

by Brad Acker

What is Bitcoin?

It's the world's first decentralized digital money - meaning no government, bank, or corporation controls it. Instead, it's powered by computer software that anyone with internet access can download and use to monitor transactions. Unlike the dollar, which is backed by the US government and regulated by the Fed, Bitcoin exists only in the digital realm and cannot be physically held. But it can be used as a currency, store of value, or investment. And of all the cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin is the most widely held and traded.

How Does it Work?

Bitcoin and other cryptos run on blockchain technology - a digital database that stores all transactions and distributes them across the internet. Computers running the Bitcoin software solve cryptographic puzzles to verify transactions and add them to the ledger chronologically. This process is called mining, which releases new Bitcoin into circulation as a reward to miners. The cap on the number of Bitcoin that can exist is 21 million, and it's unlikely this will change.

Who Created Bitcoin?

Satoshi Nakamoto, a mysterious person or team, published a paper in 2008 outlining the principles behind Bitcoin. The crypto king was launched in 2009, but Satoshi's identity remains unknown.

How Much Bitcoin is There?

With 21 million as the cap, there are currently over 19 million Bitcoin in existence. The rate at which new Bitcoin is released gets halved every 4 years. And, with 8 decimal places of divisibility, Bitcoin is highly versatile, with its smallest unit being a Satoshi or "sat".

What Determines its Price?

Like other investments, the price of Bitcoin is driven by supply and demand, influenced by factors like company and individual acceptance, investor sentiment, central bank policy, inflation, and foreign exchange rates.


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