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|Bitcoin is a consensus network that enables a new payment system and a completely digital money. It is the first decentralized peer-to-peer payment network that is powered by its users with no central authority or middlemen. From a user perspective, Bitcoin is pretty much like cash for the Internet. Bitcoin can also be seen as the most prominent triple entry bookkeeping system in existence.|
|Bitcoin is the first implementation of a concept called "cryptocurrency", which was first described in 1998 by Wei Dai on the cypherpunks mailing list, suggesting the idea of a new form of money that uses cryptography to control its creation and transactions, rather than a central authority. The first Bitcoin specification and proof of concept was published in 2009 in a cryptography mailing list by Satoshi Nakamoto. Satoshi left the project in late 2010 without revealing much about himself. The community has since grown exponentially with many developers working on Bitcoin. Satoshi's anonymity often raised unjustified concerns, many of which are linked to misunderstanding of the open-source nature of Bitcoin. The Bitcoin protocol and software are published openly and any developer around the world can review the code or make their own modified version of the Bitcoin software. Just like current developers, Satoshi's influence was limited to the changes he made being adopted by others and therefore he did not control Bitcoin. As such, the identity of Bitcoin's inventor is probably as relevant today as the identity of the person who invented paper.|
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Frequently Asked Questions
What is Bitcoin?
Bitcoin is a digital currency that operates on a different payment network. Bitcoin uses peer-to-peer technology to operate with no central authority or banks; managing transactions and the issuing of bitcoins is carried out collectively by the network. Bitcoin is open-source; its design is public, nobody owns or controls Bitcoin and everyone can take part.
What's a Bitcoin Faucet?
A faucet is a website where you can earn bitcoins for free in exchange for viewing advertisements or doing some simple tasks. Faucets are a way to get people interested and start using bitcoin, a website where anyone can get free bitcoins and start to move and spend with the new coin, even if it's with small quantities. The incentive is for them to learn and, hopefully, get involved with it.
How does Bitcoin work?
Bitcoins are generated through a process known as a mining. Mining can be performed by anyone that downloads the free mining software and the process involves solving a complex mathematical equation in order to generate a unique digital signature. Once bitcoins are mined, they can be stored in a digital wallet or released into the digital network. Anytime bitcoins are transferred over the network, the transaction is recorded in a public ledger known as a "blockchain." The blockchain ensures that every transaction is recorded, so as to prevent counterfeiting or double-spending of bitcoins.
How do I use Bitcoin?
Bitcoins are kept in a digital wallet which you can keep in your computer, or on a website online, which will manage and secure your wallet for you. You can have as many wallets and bitcoin addresses (where you receive money from others) as you like. The addresses never expire and are completely anonymous.
Is it similar to a credit card or Paypal?
Unlike credit card networks like Visa and payment processors like Paypal, bitcoin is not owned by an individual or company. Bitcoin is the world's first completely open payment network which anyone with an internet connection can participate in. Bitcoin was designed to be used on the internet, and doesn't depend on banks or private companies to process transactions.
Why would I use bitcoin?
Bitcoin allows you to instantly send any amount of money to anyone in the world without needing a bank. It allows you to access your money without needing an ATM or credit card - bitcoin gives you back control over your money. Plus you can pay friends back for dinner, buy your next computer, and donate to charity, all using bitcoin.
Where can I spend bitcoin?
Many large online businesses accept bitcoin, such as Dell, Steam, Overstock and Expedia. Non-profits such as Wikipedia and the United Way also accept bitcoin donations. Look for a bitcoin payment option at many of your favorite websites and you'll be surprised how many accept bitcoin! You can view a list of merchants here..
What is FaucetHub?
FaucetHub is a middleman between you and faucets you use. It allows you to collect coins from faucets you use (as long as they use FaucetHub) to a single place and payout them in bulk, avoiding some transactions fees that way.
Why are there transaction fees?
On the majority of bitcoin transactions a small fee is paid as incentive to miners. With some online wallets like Coinbase and Xapo, the website pays the fees for you. The fees go to the miners to incentivise them to keep mining, which in turn keeps the Bitcoin network secure. They already get a reward in bitcoin for each block they mine, but this reward halves every 4 years. The plan is that as the block reward diminishes over the time, it will be replaced by transaction fees.
Why does Bitcoin change value?
Bitcoin is traded for dollars, euros, yen, real and other currencies in real time 24 hours a day. Depending on the demand for buying or selling bitcoin, the price can fluctuate from day to day. This is similar to the manner in which the value of a stock or property can go up or down based on supply and demand.