12 Apr '13, 9am

The Economist explains: How does Bitcoin work? | The Economist

The Economist explains: How does Bitcoin work? | The Economist

BITCOIN, the world’s “first decentralised digital currency”, was launched in 2009 by a mysterious person (or persons) known only by the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto. It has been in the news this week as the value of an individual Bitcoin, which was just $20 at the beginning of February, hit record highs above $250, before falling abruptly to below $150 on April 11th. What exactly is Bitcoin, and how does it work? Unlike traditional currencies, which are issued by central banks, Bitcoin has no central monetary authority. Instead it is underpinned by a peer-to-peer computer network made up of its users’ machines, akin to the networks that underpin BitTorrent, a file-sharing system, and Skype, an audio, video and chat service. Bitcoins are mathematically generated as the computers in this network execute difficult number-crunching tasks , a procedure known as Bitcoin “mining”. ...

Full article: http://www.economist.com/blogs/economist-explains/2013/04...

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What exactly is #Bitcoin, and how does it work?

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