The best way to learn Bitcoin is to jump in and "snap your pockets" to see how they work.
Despite the difficulty and danger of advertised it, getting bitcoin is much easier and safer than you might think. In many ways, this may be easier than opening a bank in a traditional bank. Moreover, considering what is happening in the banking system, it may also be safer.
There are a few things to learn: get and use a software wallet, learn how to collect money, and learn how to buy bitcoin from an individual or exchange.
Before you start, you need to give yourself a wallet. You can do this easily by signing up in one of the exchanges that will host your wallet. And, although I think you will end up with one or more exchange wallets, you should start on your own computer so that you can better understand Bitcoin and exchange it, because the exchange itself is still being tested. As we move into the stage of discussion, I will advise you to develop the habit of withdrawing money and coins from the exchange or diversifying transactions on the exchange to keep funds safe.
What is a wallet?
This is a way to store your bitcoin. Specifically, it is software designed to store bitcoin. It can run on desktop computers, laptops, mobile devices [except Apple], or it can store Bitcoin on devices such as thumb drives. If you are worried about being hacked, this is a good choice. Even if they invested millions of dollars in Winklevoss * twins on Bitcoin, they invested their investment in a hard drive and put it in a safe.
* Winklevoss twins were the first to think of being a social networking site for Facebook. They hired Mark Zuckerberg, and Mark Zuckerberg took his own ideas and became very wealthy.
What do you need to know about having a Bitcoin wallet on your computer?
You can download the original Bitcoin wallet or client in Windows or Mac format below. These are not only wallets, but are actually part of the Bitcoin network. They will receive, store and send your bitcoin. You can create one or more addresses by clicking [the address is a number that looks like this: 1LyFcQatbg4BvT9gGTz6VdqqHKpPn5QBuk]. You'll see a field where you can copy and paste the number of the person you want to send money to, which will be deposited directly into that person's wallet. You can even create a QR code that lets someone take a photo using the app on your phone and send you some bitcoin. It is absolutely safe to issue these notifications – both the address and the QR code are suitable for my donation page. Donate at any time!
Note: This type of wallet can act as both your wallet and part of the Bitcoin system. The reason Bitcoin works is that each transaction is broadcast and recorded as a number in the entire system [which means that every transaction is confirmed by the network itself and is not reversible]. Any computer with the right software can be part of the system to check and support the network. This wallet can be used both as a personal wallet and as a support for this system. Therefore, please note that it will take up 8-9 GB of computer memory. After installing the wallet, it takes up to one day for the wallet to sync with the network. This is normal, does not damage your computer, and makes the entire system more secure, so it is a good idea.
- Original wallet.
- This is a full-featured wallet: create multiple addresses to receive bitcoin, easily send bitcoins, track transactions and back up your wallet.
- In addition to spending time, this is a very easy to use option.
- Search Bitcoin Qt Wallet to download to find its site.
- Runs on top of Bitcoi Qt and therefore has all the same synchronization requirements.
- Armory allows you to back up, encrypt and store Bitcoin offline.
- Search the Bitcoin Armory Wallet to find its site.
If you don't want to use so much memory or don't want to wait for the wallet to sync, then some good wallets don't make you sync the entire history of Bitcoin:
- A lightweight wallet that syncs quickly. This is very good for new users.
- Search for bitcoin multi-bit wallets to find their site.
- In addition to being quick and easy, this wallet also allows you to recover lost data with a password.
- Search for Bitcoin Electum Wallet to find its site.
After setting up your wallet, please take a few clicks. Things to look for:
o There will be a page showing how many bitcoins are currently in your wallet. Keep in mind that Bitcoin can be broken down into smaller parts, so you might see a decimal with a lot of zeros behind it. [Interestingly, 0.00000001 is a Nakamoto, named after the anonymous creator of Bitcoin].
o There will be an area showing your recent transactions.
o There will be an area where you can create an address and QR code [like my code above]. If you don't want to use a QR code, you don't need a QR code, but if you run a business and want to accept Bitcoin, all you have to do is show someone the payment QR code and let them take a picture, then they can Send money to you. You can also create as many addresses as you like, so if you want to track the source of the money, you can get a single tagged address from each payee.
o When you want to send money to someone or yourself on an exchange or other wallet, there is a boxed area where you can paste the code.
There are other options and features, but first you should know about it.
Get your first bitcoin
Now that you have a wallet, you will certainly want to test it.
The first place to go is http://faucet.bitcoin.st/.
This is a website that emits a small amount of bitcoin in order to get people used to using bitcoin. The original version was run by Bitcoin's main developer, Gavin Andreson. This site is closed and the site operates by sending one or two ads per month. You agree to receive these messages by requesting Bitcoin. Copy and paste your new Bitcoin address and enter the phone number where you can receive text messages. They send an SMS to make sure that people don't constantly ask for more information because there is no cost to creating a bitcoin address. They will also send one or two ads per month to support their operations. The amount they send is negligible: 0.0015 BTC [or 1.5 mBTC]. However, they are processed almost immediately, so you can check if your address and wallet are working. Getting that part of Bitcoin is also a feeling. [Disclaimer: I have nothing to do with the site, if you use them, nothing can be received. I just think they are a good way to get your hands wet].
You have just entered the Bitcoin economy.
In order to make your feet a little wet, you can go to the gold. There are many services and websites, and you can use Bitcoin to pay for things like go to certain websites, fill out online surveys or watch sponsored videos. These are harmless, and you can earn some extra bitcoin in this way, but it's important to remember that when people click on a link on their website, these businesses get paid. They are actually refunding a portion of the money paid to you. It's not illegal, even immoral [you might like to see things and make purchases!], but they often look flashy and may not be completely simple. Everything I've tried [especially bitvisitor.com] has been paid for by ad. It's fun to do these experiments, but even if the value of Bitcoin is likely to rise, you won't be a millionaire. Therefore, unless you are an advertising fan, I suggest you move on. If you want to try it, just Google "free bitcoin" or something similar, you will find many sites.
Buy bitcoin hand in hand
In the end, this will be the real test of Bitcoin. Can people easily trade them back and forth? If this is not possible, then there will be no real bitcoin economy, as retailers will not be able to use it. If the retailer can't use it, what good is this? Fortunately, this is not really a problem. The iPhone is a bit delayed, but many smartphones have apps [mobile wallets] that can read QR codes and allow you to send Bitcoin to anyone. You can also display the QR code of the address and even put a card with a QR code in your wallet so people can send you bitcoin. Then check if you have received Bitcoin based on the type of wallet you have.
A few things to note:
- When setting up your wallet, if you click a few times, you will see an option to pay the fee to speed up the transaction. Bitcoin miners can use this money when processing bitcoin information. Miners work on creating blocks that keep the system up to date and safe. This fee motivates the miner to ensure that your information is included in the next block of information and then “verify” the information. In the short term, miners make money by mining new coins [see the section "What is Bitcoin" for more information]. In the long run, as the difficulty of finding new coins grows, and as the economy grows, these costs will encourage miners to continue to create more blocks and maintain economic growth. By default, your wallet should be set to pay 0, but if you prefer, you can add a fee to prioritize transactions. You are not obligated to pay the fees, and many organizations dealing with many small transactions [such as the above-mentioned gold mining transactions] generate enough expenses to satisfy the miners.
- When you click on your wallet or link to a specific transaction on the trading page, you will see a note about the confirmation. When you make a transaction, the information will be sent to the network and the network will send back an acknowledgment that the bitcoin has not been entered repeatedly. It is wise to wait until you have received several confirmations before leaving the payer. A scam that faces someone like this is actually not an easy task. It is not very cost-effective for criminals, but it can be done.
Where can you buy such bitcoin?
- There may be bitcoin parties in your area.
- You can check out localbitcoins.com to find people who are interested in nearby.
- Some people try to conduct local street communication around the world. Under the button tree built on Wall Street in 1792, this was the first street exchange, which was called the button tree. See if there is one in your area, or one.
- See if you have any friends who want to try Bitcoin. In fact, the more people start using Bitcoin, the more successful it becomes. So please tell two friends!
Someone asked if it is possible to buy physical bitcoin. the answer is negative. By its very nature, bitcoin is a digital currency with no physical form. However, there are actually two ways to hold Bitcoin in your hands:
- Cascascius coin: from
These are the ideas of Mike Caldwell. He cast a physical coin and then embedded the private key of Bitcoin. You can get the private key by stripping the hologram from the coin, and the hologram will clearly indicate that the coin has been tampered with. Mike does his best to make sure he can be trusted. This is a good investment strategy, as these coins may be huge collections in the coming years.
- Paper wallet: from
A paper wallet simply means that you don't have to store Bitcoin information in a digital wallet, but print the key information along with the private key and safely store it in a safe, drawer or mattress [if you like] . It is highly recommended that you use this cost-effective system to secure your bitcoin. But remember, some people may steal them, or if your house is burned, they will go with the house and there is no way to get them back. Really, it is no different from cash. Also, like the Casascius coin, they are really bad for spending money before you put them back on your computer.
* There are software to make your paper wallet printing easier. Bitcoinpaperwallet.com is one of the best sites with a great tutorial on how to use them.
* Bitcoin is not actually in the wallet, but is still on the network. In fact, there will be a QR code on the outside of the wallet that allows you to ship coins to your wallet anytime, anywhere.
* The sealed part of the wallet will have a private key and you will not be able to access the coin without the private key. So put as many coins as possible on the wallet you want to be inaccessible. You won't be able to whip the thing and take out a few coins to buy a cup of coffee. Instead, think of it as a piggy bank. In order to get the money, you have to get rid of it. A smaller amount can be taken, but at this time, the security of the wallet is compromised, and it is easier for someone to steal the coin. It is best to put them all in or out.
*People who use paper wallets are often sensitive to security, and there are many ways in the world to make evil people invade your computer. Bitcoinpaperwallet.com offers a lot of good advice on how to safely print your wallet.
Someone has also asked about the purchase of bitcoin on eBay. Yes, it is possible, but their prices will be overestimated. So, given the extreme market price you might see, selling on eBay seems to be a better option. But just like anything that is too unbelievable, it's too unbelievable. As I will explain in the next section, selling Bitcoin in this way is too risky.
How to not buy bitcoin
In the next section, I will explain a few key points about buying from Bitcoin exchanges. Let me warn you before I do this.
A short history lesson: When people first started building real business based on bitcoin, they used all the tools available to any merchant. They are sold through credit cards and PayPal. The problem with this business model was quickly discovered: no one other than the payee could reverse the bitcoin transaction. Credit cards and PayPal have a strong buyer protection policy that makes it relatively easy to ask for a refund. Therefore, the evil individual realizes this and starts to buy bitcoin, and then ask for a refund sooner or later. Moreover, because Bitcoin is a non-material product that is sent through new and little-known technical means, the seller cannot compete against it. Therefore, the seller stops accepting credit cards and PayPal.
For currency, this is a big question: how to transfer funds between buyers and sellers? If you wire some money, there will be some business that will convince you of Bitcoin. These companies usually provide addresses in Albania, Poland or Russia. The truth is that many of these tools do work, and there are many stories on the forums of people who buy bitcoins in this way. But it took a lot of time, at the same time, buyers had to bite their nails and wonder if they would get bitcoin or kiss investment goodbye.
I hope that as Bitcoin becomes more acceptable and more valuable, we will see a form of Nigerian prince scam. So the warning is this: We now have exchanges and other businesses that can easily transfer money to and from the exchange. Never wire bitcoin. In the history of Bitcoin, this is a short and forgotten moment.
Next, I will discuss how to buy and review some of the best known exchanges from the Bitcoin exchange.