Enthusiasts in the field of bitcoin and blockchain technology often site the reason that current fiat system is on the path of self destruction because its based on virtual reality rather then actuality. The sudden rise of bitcoin and the gain of mass acceptance has not been because its able to move with relative ease in the virtual world. But also because it brings accountability, banking, decentralization and peer to peer model packaged in an opensource software.
It is often sited that banks work on creating money out of thin air. Where central banks control total money supply, the banks are able to receive deposits then give them out for loan to 3rd party to profit. This problem was highlighted in a recent crash of markets when liquidity was shorted and had to be filled with extra printing of fiat money, as early as 2008. This also resulted in a crash of many banks as they were unable to sustain the withdrawal pressures.
This creation of virtual money is not happening in bitcoin. While bitcoin cannot be forged services ontop of bitcoin are now filling what banks did wrong even without realizing what they are doing wrong. Exchanges are now giving leverage plus margin trading which essentially what banks did with loans. This is building an artificial economy. Looking into this further, most exchanges (top in trading) dont even have liquidity for 2000btc(these are not combined numbers). A simple look through the tool on bitcoinwisdom. Its important to realize that bitcoin was meant to replace all this and replace the artificial currency created by banks.
Since the unleashing of the bitcoin code onto the world as an open source digital asset, many have tried to fork the code and do much more with the with the underlining technology known as blockchain. While many have simply forked and the SHA256 algorithm with competing products based on other algorithms such as scrypt nscrypt and now dagger.
Ethereum creator Vitalik Buterin envisioned a sort of a programmable blockchain. Based on smart contracts its a very powerful tool. In this Article I will try to cover the basics of ethereum so that you get clear picture of what it is and why its important. I think the best words of what ethereum is are on its website “Ethereum is a decentralized platform that runs smart contracts: applications that run exactly as programmed without any possibility of downtime, censorship, fraud or third party interference.” Similar to bitcoin blockchain the ethereum blockchain requires ether to make or setup contracts and build decentralized apps based on those contracts. It is important to note that ether or ehterium being used directly will be very costly, but using it as contract based setup makes it cheap, fast, secure and unstoppable.
Mining ether is one topic being googled alot recently since it has risen in price while bitcoin price has fallen of a bit. This is even more visible when the rates of bitcoins start to rise we see the fall of price in eth or ether the fuel of ethereum blockchain. Mining is done through a program called geth which is a communicator between ether network and your system. Block generation time is very small so mining is not that difficult since there are no ASICs available for this algorithm you can look into mining it with cpu or gpu. A full tutorial on how to mine eth the fuel of ethereum can be found here.
Is ethereum the new bitcoin, most certainly not. Its a reprogrammable blockchain which can be used with contracts based programming to improve and build decentralized apps with incentives.
When I got into bitcoin and started getting deeper into why its so important. I met by Partner and we would and still do have heated discussions on the importance of crypto currencies or altcoins as we would like to call them. I am more of a one currency for the world type of fan, where as my partner is more into blockchain its developments and derivatives. It brings into aspect how much we love what we do and it keeps us both on our toes to understand the eco system that is building around us. Its fun to be able to just sit daily and talk about the possibilities that come forth because we both are crypto enthusiasts in general.
We often discuses how one coin maybe better then the other or not. The pros and cons while I am looking to it from general business stand point, he looks at it more towards possible potential of the design that the coin follows. We both might be wrong but it does bring out interesting arguments. One such argument when we met early was on altcoins such as dashcoin, doge and litecoin where I pointed out (this was back in 2014) that xrp or ripple will eventually become the second largest currency and give bitcoin a run for its money. While I still believe that btc is here to stay as xrp is now becoming the poster child for closed source coins with stellar also created by the co-founder of ripple is in close for second. From finance stand point of view it was obvious back then that when the banks start realizing bitcoin and its truly remarkable concept they will opt to fight it and at the heart of that xrp or ripple will emerge, as not only will it the closed source the banks will be able to control the infrastructure while still keeping tap on whats happening.
Today we see 10 of the largest 50 banks of the world in support of xrp and recently published news that Standard Chartered is testing it, right after western union news that they were also testing ripple to bring credibility to it.
I am still of the view that bitcoin will lead the way since it was presented as a decentralized distributed ledger to the world which could only be controlled on consensus rather then an entity, xrp will be used more as a poster child to replace the old technology that is running at the hearts of the banks called “swift” and outdated systems.