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The Buzz Behind Bitcoin

Bitcoin, Bitcoin, Bitcoin. Heard a snippet on the news or an adult talking about it? Well, by the end of this article I hope you will understand why there’s a buzz about bitcoin.


Anandita Nair




WHAT IS BITCOIN?

Bitcoin is defined as a “decentralized digital currency, without a central bank or single administrator, that can be sent from user to user on the peer-to-peer bitcoin network without the need for intermediaries”- The web.


Bit of a mouthful? Here is my understanding.


The first vital point about bitcoin is that it’s online. Each Bitcoin is basically a computer file which is stored in a 'digital wallet' app on a device. People can send Bitcoins (or part of one) to another's digital wallet.


The second point? It’s a whole different currency, and the price changes according to the bidders. It's like an auction. To buy ONE bitcoin at “5:35 am 17 June 2021”, you’d have to pay 28,64,591.59 Rs. Then again, the price varies every minute.


The third is MINING. Bitcoin mining is creating new bitcoins by solving a computational puzzle. Miners have become very sophisticated over the last several years using complex machinery to speed up mining operations.No matter how many miners, it still takes 10 minutes to mine one bitcoin. At 600 seconds (10 minutes), all else being equal, it will take 72,000 GW (or 72 Terawatts) of power to mine a bitcoin using the average power usage.


The fourth (and last) vital point is that NO GOVERNMENT OWNS OR CONTROLS BITCOIN’S VALUE. Unlike other currencies, we don’t know the founder of bitcoin and there is no organization controlling it!




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