Crypto and Blockchain Primer
Here is a list of cryptocurrency and blockchain resources that we believe will help anyone who’s looking to get their feet wet. We started off with listing the basics first and as you read you will find more complex ideas with this realm.
This primer is inspired by “Crypto Canon” by Andreessen Horowitz.
Update: Our friends at A16Z have put together a few more:
You can start here:
Hash Power is a documentary podcast series that explore the emerging world of cryptocurrencies and blockchain. The first three episodes are essential for you to listen to before you start going deeper down the rabbit hole.
Episode 1 — Understanding Blockchains.
Episode 2 — Cryptocurrency Investing.
Episode 3 — Funding, Forking, and a Creative Future.
What is Cryptocurrency?
Cryptocurrencies are secured digital assets created through decentralized networks based on blockchain technology. Contrary to popular belief, cryptocurrencies, and the blockchain is more transparent than other cash-based currencies making them a poor solution for criminal activity. The infamous Silk Road perpetrators were caught because of the bitcoin blockchain.
The Future of Money — The future of money, more than a static unit of value- Neha Narula explains how as software and currency combine, the reliance on institutions for security decreases. This new programmable era will allow people to use their money and their energies for more constructive things.
What is Blockchain?
But How Does Bitcoin Actually Work? — Blockchain changing the world for the better: Blockchain is the underlying technology of cryptocurrency. This video further explains how blockchain can assist in solving multiple global issues.
Blockchain allows people to share and store information on multiple platforms globally. An example would be a cryptocurrency, in which Blockchain removes the central authority aspect allowing for transactions to be much more confidential and efficient.
What does it mean to have Bitcoin? For instance, using a communal ledger to track payments between you and your friends. This video is important for anyone interested in learning more about the fundamentals of the technology behind cryptocurrencies.
The 6th Wave of Technology — Venture Capitalist Bill Tai discusses blockchain saying “It’s clear what the promise is: low-friction, very fast, low-cost commerce.” Incorporating blockchain into any type of transaction-oriented business will considerably advance the efficiency in the way governments, businesses, and institutions deliver systems and services to people around the world, at a tenth to a hundredth of the cost per transaction.
Digital Assets Vs. Cryptocurrency
The term digital assets not only includes cryptocurrencies like #BTC and #ETH etc. but also multiple other assets not always classified as currencies. The term digital assets is broad and it encompasses cryptocurrencies, but also refers to any asset in an electronic form. Traditional examples of digital assets include patents, real estate, and stock. Digital assets are stored and tracked on blockchain technology bringing innovation and new applications to multiple industries.
How is blockchain already transforming the world?
Blockchain is the next generation of anonymous secure transactions using cryptography. Specifically, through transactions made with cryptocurrencies, Blockchain’s technology has the potential to change multiple industries globally.
Blockchain is Eating Wall St — Alex Tapscott provides an articulate description of how Blockchain is transforming the economic power grid.
Beyond the Bitcoin Bubble — This New York Times article explains the identity problem we are facing today of granting services like Amazon and Facebook permission to have our information so we can complete tasks. Steve Johnson further suggests that by embracing blockchain’s platform we can revert back to open protocols which allow for more flexibility.
What is DeFi?
DeFi or Decentralized Finance is an umbrella word for multiple financial operations in cryptocurrency of blockchain that is focused on eliminating the middle man.
Detailed explanation of Defi Here — “DeFi Dad” walks through the basics of what is Decentralized Finance (DeFi) and what it isn’t, in hopes of encouraging more participation. He explains how to mitigate risks in this new peer-to-peer decentralized censorship resistance finance system.
What is Yield Farming?
Yield farming refers to the awards that are created from new crypto assets by putting your existing crypto assets to work with lending or staking. Multiple platforms exist worldwide for yield farming sharing the same goal of depositing funds in a smart contract and earning rewards.
This article further explains how stacking the yield allows farmers to generate more yield through specific protocols that issue tokens to farmers providing liquidity to their pool. As a result, yield farmers can earn returns with transaction fees, token rewards, and capital growth.
What is Mining?
Blockchain 101 Part 1: Anders Brownsworth explains the concepts behind a blockchain with an excellent visual example.
Blockchain 101 Part 2: This builds on Part 1 of these series and makes an introduction to private key pairs.
Through complex equations and machinery, miners determine which hardware is best for results based on the type of cryptocurrency they are mining for. This computational process specifically assists in securing the blockchain, which results in newly produced cryptocurrency. The goal is to assure that all the transactions are shown in the digital ledger.
This article uses Bitcoin as an example to show that miners will be rewarded with fees for processing transactions that network users will pay. The specific fees guarantee miners will continue to have the incentive to mine and maintain networking. As competition increases for fees, as a result, they will be lowered once it is divided.