Cryptocurrency — a kind of digital currency, the creation and control of which are based on cryptographic methods.
King of the crypto world, bitcoin is now a family name; for many, it is synonymous with "cryptocurrency". Its purpose is to provide a peer-to-peer electronic version of cash to allow payments to be sent online without the need for a third party (e.g. Mastercard).
The rapid rise in bitcoin price has caused an explosion of new bitcoin investors. With a huge increase in interest, the number of traders who accept bitcoin as a legitimate form of payment has increased. Bitcoin is moving rapidly towards its goal to become an accepted currency around the world.
The development of bitcoins is headed by a Bitcoin Core developer Vladimir John. van der LAN, who took office on 8 April 2014. Bitcoin's changes are democratically decided by the community.
For more information about bitcoin, including an explanation of bitcoin mining, bitcoin history, bitcoin value analysis, and a description of how Bitcoin really works, check out the guide "What is Bitcoin? Everything you need to know about bitcoin is explained."
For a more detailed description of the bitcoin economy, what makes money, and how bitcoin works in the economy as a whole, see "bitcoin explanation" and "bitcoin deflationary currency"
Bitcoin Cash was created on August 1, 2017 after the "hard fork" of the bitcoin blockchain. For years, the bitcoin community has been debating whether to increase the block size in hopes of alleviating some of the network bottlenecks that have impacted bitcoin due to its greater popularity.
As the transaction was not reached, the original bitcoin block chain was forked, leaving the bitcoin chain untouched and creating a new block chain that would allow developers to change some of the original bitcoin software features.
Generally speaking, Bitcoin Cash's argument is that by allowing the block size to increase, more transactions can be processed in the same amount of time. Those who oppose Bitcoin Cash argue that increasing the block size will increase storage and bandwidth requirements and actually pay for regular users. This could lead to further centralization, which Bitcoin intended to avoid.
Bitcoin Cash does not have a single development team such as Bitcoin. Currently, there are several independent development teams.
Ethereum is a revolutionary platform that has led the concept of “smart contracts” to the blockchain. Launched into the world in July 2015 by 21-year-old Vitalik Buterin, Ethereum has quickly grown from celebrity status to cryptocurrency.
Buterin has a whole team of developers working behind him to further develop the Ethereum platform. Read more about Buterin in our article "Vitalik Buterin: the face of blockchain"
Ethereum has the ability to process transactions through a bitcoin-like blockchain quickly and inexpensively, but also has the ability to run smart contracts. To read about smart contracts in the future, see "what's the difference between bitcoin and Ethereum" but for now, think about automated processes that can do almost anything.
To learn more about Ethereum, which includes analyzing the platform's strengths and future prospects, read "What is Ethereum, all you need to know?".
Like bitcoin, Litecoin is a peer-to-peer transaction platform designed to be used as a digital currency. Due to some notable technical improvements, Litecoin is able to process more transactions at lower costs. Litecoin was designed to handle the small transactions we do daily.
Litecoin is sometimes referred to as "digital silver", while bitcoin is known as”digital gold". This is due to the fact that traditionally silver was used for small daily transactions, while gold was used as a store of wealth and was not used in everyday life.
The Litecoin blockchain is the fork of the bitcoin chain. It was originally launched in 2011 when its founder Charlie Lee was still working at Google. Known as a cryptocurrency expert, Charlie Lee is backed by a strong team of developers who seem to be getting what they intended to do. They have recently achieved a very notable achievement with the first successful atomic exchange.
For an in-depth discussion of what Litecoin does, how it differs from Bitcoin and the team supporting development, see "What is Litecoin"
Dash (which comes from “digital money”) claims to be the easiest to use and most scalable cryptocurrency in the world. It has the ability to send funds instantly confirmed by the "double send" security, with additional transaction history functionality that can be deleted, and the ability to send transactions anonymously.
Like bitcoin, Dash is designed to be used as a digital currency, but has some aggregated values such as much faster transaction times and lower fees. For a slightly higher fee, Dash has an additional "instant send" feature that allows transactions to be confirmed almost instantly. This is one of Dash's main outlets because many believe this feature will allow it to be used in brick and mortar establishments.
The Dash development team consists of more than 50 members and is led by former financial services specialist Evan Duffield.
For the latest version of Dash, check out its official website and Reddit page. You can also read "What is Dash" to learn more about the project.
Dogecoin is a peer-to-peer electronic payment system based on the popular Shiba Inu dog meme of 2013. It was a Luckycoin fork, which was a Litecoin fork in itself. The coin uses a PoW command mining algorithm similar to bitcoin; however, while bitcoin has a limited number of coins, there is no limit to the number of Dogecoins that can be created. The current rate of creation of Dogecoin is more than 5,000,000,000 coins per year.
Dogecoin is one of the oldest altcoins, and so they have a relatively large community. The reddit page has about 90,000 shibs (the group name for your community members).
Dogecoin is a great currency to use in microtransactions and is commonly used for tip items. The coin is a kind of self-proclaimed "joke", which has gained great popularity. This is a good indicator of the cheerful nature of the community as a whole.
For more information on Dogecoin, which includes a look at currency history, team and how to buy, see: "What is Dogecoin".