24 Jan '13, 7pm

Bitcoin market cap now +$200M as prices keep rising

Many of the analogies used to explain Bitcoin are, unfortunately, misleading. Saying 'each bitcoin', for example, as if it were a tangible collectable, introduces a bunch of associations that aren't helpful for understanding.Instead, think of Bitcoin as a giant consensus accounting ledger. Everyone can see which crypto-signing-keys have the right to spend which balances. (The balances happen to be measured in an integral unit called a 'satoshi', and 100,000,000 of these satoshis equal "1 BTC"... but these are tallies in a ledger mapping key-identities to available-spending-balances, not rare collectables.) Given that, a person's Bitcoin holdings are simply numerical totals which, at the direction of their signing keys, can be handed in full or part to other signing keys. But it works like having a bank balance at a shared "bank in the cloud", massively replicated, with no ...

Full article: http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=5111432

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