Bitcoin for the Befuddled
Book – 2015 (from the YPRL)
Excellent book for learning about how Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies work. It also covers encryption in detail making it a must read for anyone interested in learning how it works. It would be also of great interest to anyone into maths. For a programming perspective have a look at Mastering Bitcoin.
An important part of the Bitcoin currency is the Blockchain which contains all of the transactions ever made by Bitcoin users. At the time of writing it was over 2GB in size.
There has been some criticism of Bitcoin recently as it won’t scale well to doing monetary transactions for everybody; and it will not have the speed of the centralised system of clearing transactions that the banks use. Currently Bitcoin transactions take a few minutes for each one compared to the millions per second that public banks process.
I can’t see Bitcoin moving beyond those who are curious, have a technical interest or those who wish to buy stuff you can’t buy from normal outlets.
The Bitcoin world is littered with dodgy exchange operators and their long suffering investors who have lost much money. Having the ability to deal away from the prying eyes of government has the drawback of not having the government to protect you from rogue operators.
Citizens who for good reasons cannot trust their government may find the unregulated bitcoin world better, but for everyone else; stick with the devil you know, your own government.
Lost Funds Recovery
There are specialised services to help you recover your bitcoins due to fraud.