Bitcoin 101


Bitcoin was introduced in 2009, the brainchild of mysterious cryptographer Satoshi Nakamoto.  There have been other digital currencies before, but what separates bitcoin is it is the first to show true potential to be more than just an Internet hit.

Bitcoins are created, or mined, by solving a complex algorithm. When these coins are transacted, those transactions are confirmed and tracked by the peer-to-peer network of miners, thus making bitcoin free of government oversight. This P2P network also helps to ensure there is no double-spending.

Thanks to cryptography (SHA-256 hash algorithm), bitcoin is extremely safe as addresses and private keys are nearly impossible to reproduce.

Currently, bitcoin’s market capitalization and price have risen sharply in the past half-year and thanks to companies such as BitPay and Coinbase, bitcoin is a payment option for websites such as reddit and WordPress.

Take a look at this inforgraphic from Online Accounting Degrees.


  • Bitcoin is the 1st digital currency to show true potential and be more than just an Internet sensation. Tweet this
  • The average amount bitcoin miners spend on their mining rigs – $3,126 Tweet this
  • With 33 or more characters, it is virtually impossible to randomly reproduce a bitcoin address. Tweet this
  • 12,292,100 – the current number if bitcoin in existence. Tweet this
  • An estimated 95% of bitcoin users are male. Tweet this
  • The current bitcoin market capitalization is nearly $10 billion. Tweet this
  • There are 54 active markets where bitcoin is currently traded. Tweet this
  • 1 BTC in Feb 2011 – $5.35; 1 BTC in Feb 2014 – ~$800. Tweet this

About the author: Alexander Maykowski

Alexander Maykowski is a recent graduate of Marquette University, where he studied journalism and political science. He has an ardent interest in cryptocurrencies (such as Bitcoin) and how they will shape the financial and global landscape in the future.

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