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What is Bitcoin?

Understanding Bitcoin: A Basic Introduction

Bitcoin is a digital currency that operates independently of banks and governments.

Bitcoins derive value in the same way every other currency does. People are prepared to exchange bitcoins for money through exchanges and people are prepared to sell goods and services and be paid in Bitcoin.  Simply stated, Bitcoins have value because people are prepared to give them value

Bitcoins are transferred directly from person to person via the Internet (or phone network) without going through a bank or clearinghouse. As soon as the transaction is verified by the Bitcoin network, the transfer is complete – takes maybe 10 minutes in my experience

Dell Accepts BitcoinThis video does a very good job explaining the basics. Look out for the following things:

  • How Bitcoin are stored
  • How Bitcoin are created (called mining)
  • How a Bitcoin transaction works
  • How you can exchange Bitcoin for other currencies
  • Where you can use Bitcoin – buying computer games or videos; paying for a Dell computer; Buying stuff at Overstock; making donations and more
  • How you could Bitcoin to be paid in your business

Since this video was created a few things have evolved. Mining is now a much more complicated process requiring lots of computing power and cheap electricity. There are many more exchanges and more currencies can be traded for Bitcoin. Many more businesses are accepting Bitcoin.

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