ALTCOIN (alternative coin)

cryptocurrency that has all the attributes of Bitcoin. However, it does not use the same blockchain so it does not have the same genesis blocks. Altcoin’s rules are generally not compatible with Bitcoin.

LITECOIN

A type of altcoin that has a faster block confirmation time than Bitcoin.

DASH

A type of cryptocurrency that touts being the first self-governing, self-funding protocol.

RIPPLE

This is one of the newest types of digital currency. It also works as an open payment network within which that currency is transferred. Ripple may ultimately be used to build on a similar decentralized such as that used by Bitcoin.

BIT

A unit used to designate a sub-unit of a bitcoin – 1,000,000 bits equals 1 bitcoin (BTC or B⃦).

BITCOIN

A digital currency that allows for the purchase of goods and services. It is decentralized, meaning it is not backed by any central bank or government. It can be abbreviated BTC or XBT.

BITCOIN WALLET

Like a normal wallet, this digital wallet “holds” bitcoins. The holder of the wallet receives, stores, and sends bitcoins with them.

SOFTWARE WALLET

One of the two kinds of bitcoin wallets. Software wallets are installed on computers, phones, and other mobile devices.

WEB WALLET

The second type of bitcoin wallet. It is also referred to as a hosted wallet. It is hosted by a third party. These wallet providers include Coinbase, Electrum, and Bitcoin wallet

BITCOIN ADDRESS

This address is the location from which you receive, send, and hold your digital currency.

SIGNATURE

This digital form of a signature keeps bitcoin transactions from being changed once they have been processed.

BLOCKCHAIN

This is a data system that acts as a digital ledger of transactions. Through cryptography, the network is protected. It is comprised of so-called blocks that contain records of transactions.

P2P network

One of three technologies used to build blockchain.

PEER-to-PEER

This system is the second kind of technology used to build blockchain. It performs so that each user on the network is broadcasting the transactions of other users. These are called third parties.

PRIVATE KEY

Belonging only to the user, this key acts as a signature for the Bitcoin transaction. It helps to create a secure identification reference for its holder.

PUBLIC KEY

This key is used to receive bitcoins. The public key is used to make sure the recipient is the owner of an address that can receive funds. Important about it is derived from the owner’s private key.

MULTISIGNATURE (MULTISIG)

This is associated with Bitcoin transactions in which more than one key is required to authorize the transaction. It is used to divvy up the responsibility of who holds the bitcoins.

PRIVATE KEY CRYPTOGRAPHY

This key is encrypted so that it is confidential to only its owner.

DOUBLE SPENDING

This occurs if someone tries to make purchases with their bitcoins at two different places.

MINING

This process is how transactions or blocks are appended to the blockchain. During the process, transactions are compiled into blocks. This process and the blockchain help to create consensus on the network about which of the two transactions will be confirmed as valid.

BLOCK HEIGHT

This refers to the number of blocks preceding the genesis block (first block) on the chain. Genesis blocks have heights of zero because nothing precedes them. It is estimated that a bitcoin block is created every 10 minutes.

BLOCK REWARD

These rewards go to the miners who hash the block. Hash means to solve the mathematical equation that creates the block.

HASH RATE

The measure in which bitcoins are processed mathematically. This must be done quickly for security purposes.

DISTRIBUTION LEDGER

An agreement of shared, replicable, and synchronized data, that is spread across several networks, across many CPU’s.

DIGITAL TOKENS

This digital currency is rivaling others in the cryptocurrency space. It is tied to the blockchain platform. The currency has increasingly been sold by tech startups that can be used to fund their projects, instead of traditional financing, such as venture capital.

PAYMENT PROCESSORS

Merchants who accept bitcoins use specific processors to handle the transactions. This can include online merchants, brick and mortar businesses, or individuals. Processors include Coinbase, BitPay, and Paymium.

BITCOIN EXCHANGES

Places that facilitate the purchase of bitcoins.

INITIAL COIN OFFERINGS (ICOs)

Like initial public offerings, these offerings provide a way to launch new cryptocurrencies.

ENTERPRISE ETHEREUM ALLIANCE

A group of Fortune 500 companies, startups, academics, and technology vendors that have teamed with Ethereum subject matter experts. Members include Microsoft, JP Morgan, and Intel.

ETHEREUM SMART CONTRACT

The cryptocurrency Ethereum was built specifically to create smart contracts.

GOX CRISIS

A critical point in Bitcoin history when more than $480 million of it disappeared due to mismanagement of the cryptocurrency. The name is derived from the Tokyo-based Mt. Gox Bitcoin exchange.

SATOSHI NAKAMOTO

This is the name associated with the inventor(s) of Bitcoin.

ETHER

Ether is the payment form of payment made by the clients of the platform to the machines that execute the requested operations. It is considered the necessary element, and fuel, for operating Ethereum. It insures developers write quality applications, and that the network remains healthy.