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Bitcoin () is a cryptocurrency, a form of electronic cash. It is a decentralized electronic currency with no central bank or single administrator which can be sent out of user-to-user on the peer reviewed bitcoin network with no need for intermediaries.7

Transactions are confirmed by network nodes through cryptography and recorded in a public dispersed ledger called a blockchain. Bitcoin was invented by an unknown person or group of people using the name Satoshi Nakamoto9 and published as open-source software in 2009.10 Bitcoins are created as a reward for a process known as mining.

Research generated by the University of Cambridge estimates that in 2017, there were 2.9 to 5.8 million unique users using a cryptocurrency wallet, the majority of them using bitcoin.12.

Bitcoin has been criticized because of its use in prohibited transactions, its own high power consumption, price volatility, thefts from exchanges, and the chance that bitcoin is an economic bubble.13 Bitcoin has also been utilized as an investment, although several regulatory agencies have issued investor alerts about bitcoin.14

 

 

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The domain name"bitcoin.org" was registered on 18 August 2008.15 On 31 October 2008, a link to a paper authored by Satoshi Nakamoto titled Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System5 was submitted to a cryptography mailing list.16 Nakamoto implemented the bitcoin applications as open-source code and released it in January 2009.171810 Nakamoto's identity remains unknown.9.

In January 2009, the bitcoin network was created when Nakamoto mined the first block of this chain, known as the genesis block.1920 Embedded in the coinbase of the block has been the following text:"The Times 03/Jan/2009 Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks. "10 This note has been interpreted as both a timestamp and a comment on the instability brought on by fractional-reserve banking.21:18.

The receiver of the first bitcoin transaction was cypherpunk Hal Finney, who made the first reusable proof-of-work system (RPOW) in 2004.22 Finney downloaded the bitcoin applications on its launch , and on 12 January 2009 received ten bitcoins from Nakamoto.2324 Other early cypherpunk fans were creators of bitcoin predecessors: Wei Dai, creator of b-money, and Nick Szabo, creator of bit golden.25 In 2010, the earliest known business transaction using bitcoin occurred when developer Laszlo Hanyecz purchased two Papa John's pizzas for 10,000 bitcoin.26.

Nakamoto is estimated to have mined one million bitcoins27 before disappearing in 2010, when he handed the network alert crucial and control of this code repository over to Gavin Andresen. Andresen later became lead programmer at the Bitcoin Foundation.2829 Andresen then sought to decentralize control. This left opportunity for controversy to develop over the future development course of bitcoin.3029.

After ancient"proof-of-concept" transactions, the first major users of bitcoin were black markets, such as Silk Road. During its 30 months of existence, beginning in February 2011, Silk Road exclusively accepted bitcoins as payment, transacting 9.9 million in bitcoins, value roughly $214 million.31:222

In 2011, the price started at $0.30 per bitcoin, growing to $5.27 for the year. The price rose to $31.50 on 8 June. Within a month the price fell to $11.00. The next month it dropped to $7.80, and in another month to $4.77.32

 

 

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Litecoin, an early bitcoin spin-off or altcoin, appeared in October 2011.33 Many altcoins have been created since then.34

In 2012, bitcoin prices started at $5.27 growing to $13.30 for the year.32 By 9 January the cost had risen to $7.38, but then crashed by 49% to $3.80 within the next 16 days. The cost then climbed to $16.41 on 17 August, but fell by 57 percent to $7.10 over the next 3 times.35.

In March 2013 the blockchain briefly split into two independent chains with different rules. The two blockchains operated simultaneously for six hours, each using its own version of the transaction history. Normal operation was restored when the vast majority of the network downgraded to version 0.7 of their bitcoin applications.37 The Mt.

Gox experienced processing delays due to insufficient capacity44 resulting in the bitcoin cost dropping from $266 to $76 before returning to $160 within six hours.45 The bitcoin cost rose to $259 on 10 April, but then dropped by 83 percent to $45 over the next 3 days.35 On 15 May 2013, US authorities captured accounts connected with Mt.

881.48 This marked the first time a government agency had seized bitcoin.4950 The FBI captured about 26,000 bitcoins in October 2013 in the dark web website Silk Road during the arrest of Ross William Ulbricht.515253 Bitcoin's cost rose to $755 on 19 November and dropped by 50% to $378 the same moment.

In 2014, prices started at $770 and dropped to $314 for the year.32 In February 2014 that the Mt. Gox exchange, the largest bitcoin This Site exchange at the moment, stated that 850,000 bitcoins had been stolen from its clients, amounting to nearly $500 million. Bitcoin's cost fell by nearly half, from $867 to $439 (a 49% drop).

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