10

Mining is a self-adjusting system. The difficulty only rises in accordance to the available mining power. Hence, it can neither go to a difficulty where it will take months for a block to be found, nor can it become prohibitely expensive to mine. Also see How is difficulty calculated?.


9

I find this article convincing in its analysis of the dynamics between Bitcoin and competing networks: The Coming Demise of the Altcoins To summarize briefly, the author suggests: The utility provided by a currency system is related to the willingness of its users to save using that currency. Currencies have a strong network effect. Most altcoins don't ...


8

Technology is helping with this. For instance, I don't know what the fair price is for a GPS device that I see for sale at Best Buy, for instance. I whip out my mobile and do Amazon price check to see what the price is elsewhere. This app could just as easily display the price in BTCs. So therefore, we already are getting in the habit of distancing from ...


7

Presumably, this means that if you type '0.5 BTC' into a cell, it will be recognized as an amount of money instead of text. (Currently, if you type '$5' into a cell, it will recognize this as an amount of money.) You will probably be able to write formulas that manipulate Bitcoin amounts, which could be useful if you wanted to sum all of the Bitcoin amounts ...


6

First, you're going to have to prove that your altcoin is useful and has value and liquidity. You can't just create a new coin and expect people to value it. The most successful altcoins have something different about them or some feature that other coins don't have. In other words, you need to create some demand. Second, once you have demand, then you need ...


5

Bitcoin was the first, the most well known and thus has the most network effect. The network effect is extremely important and there are examples were better technologies lost to the competition because of the latter's network effect. In addition, being the oldest running crypto-currency and with the larger market cap means that it was consistently ...


5

I don't think any such study exists, because it is very difficult to gain any concrete information about full nodes on the network. Because nodes can (and often are) run over proxies or TOR, their true IP addresses are often obscured. Furthermore, IP addresses aren't necessarily a good indicator of geographic location, and certainly not connection speed. ...


5

There's a hard limit on the amount of people that own one bitcoin: There currently are only 16.1 million bitcoins in circulation, so there can't be more more than 16.1 million people with one bitcoin. However, there are a number of individuals that control much more bitcoin than that, so it is safe to say that the actual number of users that own one bitcoin ...


4

It is hard to make out an early adopter advantage for users, except perhaps scoring a few Ripples to spend for free. After spending that money, there seems little advantage for users to stick around. That's probably true for people who have no real urgent use case. But what about users who need to make international payments such as remittances? But largely ...


4

I like this question1 - we don't get many big picture questions. How could Bitcoin change the world? A mature digital cryptocurrency could reduce trade barriers and thus increase the rate of productivity dispersion throughout society. As money is a form of fungible authenticated information2, non-proprietary digital money gets to take advantage of the ...


3

As Luca mentioned it is really difficult to measure, but there is a way to map Bitcoin addresses to IP address under certain conditions. Refer this paper Title : An Analysis of Anonymity in Bitcoin using P2P Network Traffic. Authors : Philip Koshy, Diana Koshy, and Patrick McDaniel. Note: It analyses relay pattern of transactions. It cannot analyse ...


3

For small amounts it's fine to accept unconfirmed transactions. You must really understand how the protocol works to be able to double-spend an unconfirmed transaction. I'm sure in the future hackers will build tools to allow for these sort of scenarios to benefit them, but also bitcoin clients will grow more secure and be able to diminish the propagation of ...


3

This is a great question and it's something I spend a lot of time thinking about. In general, I'd say no one really knows at this point and it is difficult to make more than a few guesses. So let me have a try at that: Banks would lose much of their ability to control the monetary supply, interest rates and exchange rate. The financial sector would shrink ...


3

The number of wallets is impossible to count, as they can contain zero to thousands of addresses each (zero, as there may be users who just want to observe, or clients that only create addresses when explicitly asked to). Counting users by number of client downloads won't give you a good estimation either, with all the web wallets that are out there, plus of ...


3

I think the best reasons right now are: Marketing: being the first to do something attract a lot of interest and media. No chargebacks: Bitcoins does not allow any kind of chargeback, which is not true for main payment systems (Paypal, Stripe, Credit Card). Lower fees or no fees, just depends on how you use it. Investment some people wants to hoard some ...


3

I have created a page on the Wiki called "First time buyers guide". It is only a rough version at the time of writing, but hopefully it will be revised into a go-to guide for anyone wanting to make a payment with Bitcoin with as little unnecessary information as possible.


3

I found this link the other day that shows where you can use bitcoins https://www.spendbitcoins.com/places/?place_type=service mostly for hosting companies, some poker sites/online casinos & many computer co's that i'm sure most people would never use right now. Saw an article that a restaurant in NY wanted to accept them soon but probably its a ...


3

The cost of mining has actually decreased massively since CPU mining, which consumed something ridiculous like 5,000 Watts per GH/s. Today's best 16nm chips are speculated at running at less that 0.1 W per GH/s. Second, the absolute cost of 1 TH/s of mining power has dropped significantly. You can pre-order an Antminer S7 batch 9 (~4.8 TH/s) for around 2.5 ...


3

Coinmap is definitely not comprehensive. I imagine most of the listings are in NA and Europe because the site itself is in English. I doubt there will ever be a comprehensive centralized repository of brick-and-mortar stores taking bitcoin just due to the nature of the network itself.


3

Due to the network effect, the Bitcoin network has the most hashing power behind it, as well as the most investment in it. It had been vetted more than any other cryptocurrency, and the network is watched by more people than the others. It is also accepted by more merchants. This all adds credibility to the network's security, as well as the currency's ...


3

The space is so broad that your question can't really be answered easily. In general, altcoins are far more risky but offer more potential reward. In general, altcoin portfolios will require far more management to safely retain value. Also consider that from an investment perspective, bitcoin has more in common with ethereum and dash than ethereum and dash ...


3

My best approach would be to show them coinbase.com or xcoins.io or gemini.com and show them how its similar to a bank account. They can log in and check their balance or withdraw to a bank account directly from their wallet. Tell them that Bitcoin + Coinbase is less costly compared to PayPal: With Coinbase the church can create its own donation button for ...


2

As I see it, there are currently (April 4th 2013) two main uses for bitcoin. As a store of value, similar to gold or stock. The idea is that you buy bitcoin and it holds or ideally appreciates in value. As a medium of exchange, though in reality few people actually except bitcoin for goods and services due to its volatility. However the Silk Road which ...


2

Mining secures the Bitcoin blockchain and confirms transactions, solving the double-spend problem without the need for a central authority.


2

One of the benefits of cryptocurrencies that I recently heard at a Bitcoin Meetup that seemed very promising was how they lower the cost of remittances. I've heard remittances be defined as the act of returning a payment you previously accepted, and as the act of sending money across borders such as when immigrant workers earning income outside of their home ...


2

I agree that better client software will inevitably emerge with broader adoption. Concerning the amount of time it takes for a transaction to confirm, I think that you have to distinguish different scenarios in which Bitcoin is taking the place of the previous solution: Payment in a store: 0-confirmation is acceptable for tiny payments like getting a ...


2

There are several reasons to do this: They agree with the philosophy of Bitcoin. That is, a decentralised currency free from interference from a government or other central authority. Bitcoin payments cannot be charged back, meaning that once you receive the transaction, you are 100% sure that you will have the bitcoins. Credit card companies allow ...


2

Here is a breakdown of Bitcoin by countries taken form Google Trends: What you can see in that Estonia and Finland are first and only after that comes the US.


2

Bitcoin is the incumbent in the space with a strong lead. It is not feasible to create faster blocks than about 60 seconds (as short block intervals create a host of other problems). 60 seconds however, is still way too long to wait at a cash register for a payment to confirm, and would be incompatible with current checkout processes. This means: ...


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