others. In electronic fiat currencies, this function is fulfilled by banks, which gives them control over the traditional system. This could conceivably enable microtransactions that traditional electronic money cannot. On the one hand, you have bitcoin-the-token, a snippet of code that represents ownership of a digital concept sort of like a virtual IOU. Satoshi Nakamoto proposed bitcoin in 2008, as an electronic payment system based on mathematical proof. The idea was to produce a means of exchange, independent of any central authority, that could be transferred electronically in a secure, verifiable and immutable way. It is maintained by a group of volunteer coders, and run by an open network of dedicated computers spread around the world.
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Last updated: 26th January 2018, to cut through some of the confusion surrounding bitcoin, we need to separate it into two components. Transactions can, with some effort, be tracked this way. This makes bitcoin not an ideal currency for criminals, terrorists or money-launderers. Read more to find out how bitcoin transactions are processed and how bitcoins are mined, what it can be used for, as well as how you can buy, sell and store your bitcoin. This is because there is no central "adjudicator" that can say "ok, return the money." If a transaction is recorded on the network, and if more than an hour has passed, it is impossible to modify. Authored by Noelle Acheson. Bitcoin can be used to pay for things electronically, if both parties are willing. Holders of the currency (and especially citizens with little alternative) bear the cost. Bitcoin solves the "double spending problem" of electronic currencies (in which digital assets can easily be copied and re-used) through an ingenious combination of cryptography and economic incentives. Bitcoins aren't printed, like dollars or euros they're produced by computers all around the world, using free software. 5 - Divisibility, the smallest unit of a bitcoin is called a satoshi.