News by Design
We’ve Got Too Much Selfie-Esteem
The world ‘selfie’ is a recent addition to our...
Calling all carnivores! How well do you know your...
The Perfect Shopping Trip
4 hours, 2 coffees, a flapjack and £131, no...
The Social General Election 2015
The outcome of the General Election 2015 if it...
Email Errors and Autocorrect Nightmares
Had an embarrassing text or email mishap? You aren't...
Bad Bosses
Richard Branson, Bill Gates and Phillip Schofield fill our...
In a patience-testing blowout with for our latest project...
Women Reveal Their Beauty Secrets
From plucked eyebrows to bleached moustaches, these are the...
It’s a Big Christmas Infographic!
It's Chriiistmaaas!
Identity Theft
The key methods of identity theft and how you...
Spooks, Superstitions and the Supernatural
Are we alone in the universe? That is one...
How much do you love yogurt?
Time to delve into the UK's love of yogurt
Are you in a serious relationship?
Does your other half know some of your social...
The World’s most photogenic locations
'Photogenic' is a word we don't associate with places...
Are you chained to your desk?
Being too busy to take holiday is a depressing...
The Good Immune Guide
I had shingles* two weeks ago. I don't know...
We do need a word for that ring left...
The Histomap
Literally 4000 years of World History in one graphic.
10,787 injuries in a lifetime
And my head hurts just thinking about it -...
The map of the human body
Well, the London Tube map. Sort of.
The Periodic Table of National pride
Where all the elements were discovered - and who...
Nikola Tesla
"But I thought Thomas Edison was the father of...
You can’t really put a witty title about North Korea
I feel it would be majorly inappropriate. It's nice...
The great technological equaliser
The internet, it brings us together maaannnnn.
A human body's worth, cut down into spare parts.
World debt
An amazing infographic to explain something that is impossible-...
Creeping on your exs
What do you mean? That's what Facebook was BUILT...
Fighting over funding
Couples argue about all the things. But money is,...
A big, wet rubbish tip
58,734 cigarette lighters. 381,846 plastic bottles. 58,384 toys. In...
Serious, challenging beersearch I MEAN RESEARCH
Where in the world is the cheapest and most...
Internet Addiction
We probably aren't helping, in fairness. But two thirds...
Never ending love for Nintendo
The history of the plumber, that giant monkey, and...
The Modern Tech-y Family
Almost a laptop and a mobile each- even for...

Bitcoin, and digital currency shenanigans

"A decentralised, electronic cash system".

Simple, right?

Even when explained, in a brilliant video infographic by Duncan Elms (voiced by the intensely Australian Mark Fennell), it's a little hard to get to grips with.

It's been a viral topic recently, especially with its massive rise and subsequent system crash, fall and stock market apocalypse, so just in case any of you were as oblivious about it as I was, this should help.

Bitcoin is a digital currency that is now around four years old, created by the person (or group) Satoshi Nakamoto. Probably a pseudonym.

Essentially, the process of 'purchasing' Bitcoins is actually one of 'mining' for data, and by proxy, for a stash of coins.

A complex mathematical formula generates a 64 digit number, and 'cracking' this algorithm allows you to 'mine' 50 coins.

This process becomes more and more difficult, similar to actual factual mining, as there are just 50 new Bitcoins created every 10 or so minutes (only half of the Bitcoins that can exist have been mined at this moment in time).

The real thrust of this movement, so to speak, is in Bitcoins' lean against the current accepted economic system, and in its fearful and Web 2.0-styled approach to privacy.

Firstly, it aims to self stabilise – purely because of the gradual release of the coins themselves (although, clearly, they hadn't put PR and marketing into the stabilisation mix).

Secondly, the 'Dark Web' has really welcomed the privacy and digital cloak that using Bitcoin as currency (and using Tor to hide your identity) allows you to shield yourself with – as the other half of Newsby (Adam) says:
"Drugs is like, the most legal illegal thing they're (Bitcoins) used for, and when drugs is the most legal, there's some scary shit going on."
The security of storing Bitcoins, as a result of the illegal nature of them, is incredibly risky – they're brilliant for hackers to target, and are essentially never a physical item.

Which means you can lose your details, have your computer hacked or, basically, have your laptop blow up, and irretrievably lose your stash of Bitcoins.
And effect the entire market of Bitcoins, because of the finite amount.

Apparently, Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss have $11 million in Bitcoin (which is around 150,000 Bitcoins according to the math in this graphic- 0.7% of the total 'mine', although with recent price fluctuations, that percentage could vary – that technically means they own ~2% of all Bitcoins currently in existence).

They'd better keep them in a safe place.

Have your say

One thought on “Bitcoin, and digital currency shenanigans

  1. Pingback: News by Design | Who invented Bitcoin?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>