Crypto Crash Course —A newbie’s guide to Cryptocurrencies, DeFi, and NFTs — the 2021 version– Crypto Knowledge Tree — SharkHacks Guide to Crypto

Shoukri K.
Sep 10 · 4 min read

Disclaimer: Content below is for educational purpose only and is NOT to be considered Financial Advice!

Note: This is a work in progress guide, that will be updated as I go teaching, learning more, and discovering new projects, tools, and tips and tricks

Last update : Sep 11, 2021 L2 Arbitrum

I’ve been fascinated with Crypto for a long time, I stumbled on Crypto first in 2011, I was part of the rise in 2017, participated in the first DAO, then fell in love again in 2020 and 2021.

One of the hardest things about learning, and mastering a new subject is knowing where to start, and what are all the concepts that one has to understand in order to be effective. Understanding the core concepts, the ‘lattice work’, and developing a mental model around these concepts.

Below I have outlined the core concepts that one has to understand to be effective in the Crypto, DeFi, and NFT World, along with the best resources I have found to date around these concepts.

Money 101

The world’s most famous Ray Dalio about how the economy works

Why the current financial system is broken?

And Now …. Bitcoin

2008 Satoshi Released his white paper “Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System”

What is Cryptocurrency?

One way to think of demand/value of cryptocurrencies (and Crypto networks) is in terms of Metcalf’s law (the networking effect)

Larger Networks, Projects, and Ecosystems

Ethereum as explained by the founder:

Due to the current nature of Ethereum, it has scaling problems. Layer 2 scaling solutions, are other crypto projects, and tokens, that are meant to help Ethereum scale:


Official video :

Beyond the Currencies

Decentralized Finance (DeFi)

The best “Model” to think about DeFi that i have found around is the Bankless Skill Cube: :

Liquidity Pools sound great, but you need to be aware of IL

IL is one of the hardest concepts to wrap your head around, it was like that for me, so here are two videos that helped me.


Fiat Currency Backed




Algorithmically Stable



Memecoins (Shitcoins)

Interesting Memecoins with PonziNomics


Keep an eye on Chainlink, it’s everywhere.




NFT like the pros, Follow the money

Is one type of NFTs, think baseball cards

Great video discussing NFTs


Axie Infinity — Huge Potential

and Entertainment

Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAOs)

DAOs are organizations, and communities. From one standpoint you can think of a DAO as a CEO-less company, where shareholders vote directly on the direction of the company, the projects and initiatives it should execute on.

A more recent DAO report can be found here:


Web 3.0

Investing & Trading

a great strategy to accumulate

Stalk those people on twitter, their projects, what they say, and what they invest in


Tokenomics, Ponzinomics, and Game Theory

Crypto is about aligning incentives.

Market Cycles

Relationship between BTC, and Altcoins

Security, Trust, FUD and FOMO

You are now your own bank

Follow “Trusted” people, and make sure you don’t fall to scams

Don’t leave your money on the exchange




A site listing many of the “larger” coins/tokens/projects, with information about them, market cap, linking to their sites, addresses, etc.. a great resource

see also CoinMarketCap (might be biased/owned by Binance)



For every blockchain network / project, there are Blockchain explorers, or tools that you can use to lookup addresses, transactions, contracts, tokens, etc.


Trusted Resources

Coin Bureau is one of the quality news, and information resource in Crypto:


Paper Hands

Diamond Hands





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