The best way to learn about bitcoin, is to jump in and get several in your “pocket” to have a feel for how they work.
Despite the hype about how difficult and dangerous it usually is, getting bitcoins is a lot easier and safer than you might think. In a lot of ways, it is probably easier than opening a merchant account at a traditional bank. And, given what has been happening in the bank operating system, it really is probably safer too.
There are Bitcoin Cash Reference to learn: getting and using a software wallet, learning how exactly to receive and send money, learning how exactly to buy bitcoin from a person or an exchange.
Before getting started, you need to get yourself a wallet. You can certainly do this easily enough by registering with among the exchanges which will host wallet for you. And, although I think you are likely to want to have a number of exchange wallets eventually, you should start with one on your own computer both to get a better feel for bitcoin and because the exchanges are still experimental themselves. When we get to that stage of the discussion, I will be advising that you will get in the habit of moving your money and coins off the exchanges or diversifying across exchanges to help keep your money safe.
What is a wallet?
It is a way to store your bitcoins. Specifically, it really is software that has been made to store bitcoin. It is usually run on your desktop computer, laptop, mobile device (except, as yet, Apple) and can also be made to store bitcoins on things such as thumb drives. Should you be concerned about being hacked, then that is clearly a great option. Even the Winklevoss* twins, who’ve millions invested in bitcoin, put their investment on hard drives which they then put into a safety deposit box.
*The Winklevoss twins will be the ones who originally had the theory for a social networking site that became Facebook. They hired Mark Zuckerberg who took their idea as their own and became immensely rich.
What do you have to know about having a bitcoin wallet on your computer?
Below you can download the initial bitcoin wallet, or client, in Windows or Mac format. They are not just wallets, but are in fact the main bitcoin network. They’ll receive, store, and send your bitcoins. It is possible to create a number of addresses with a click (an address is a number that appears like this: 1LyFcQatbg4BvT9gGTz6VdqqHKpPn5QBuk). You will notice a field where you can copy and paste a number like this from a person you intend to send money to and off it’ll go straight into that person’s wallet. You can also create a QR code that may let someone take a picture with an app on their phone and send you some bitcoin. It is perfectly safe to provide these out – the address and QR code are both for my donations page. Feel free to donate!
NOTE: This kind of wallet acts both as a wallet for you and as part of the bitcoin system. The reason bitcoin works is that each transaction is broadcast and recorded as lots over the entire system (meaning that every transaction is confirmed and made irreversible by the network itself). Any computer with the right software can be section of that system, checking and supporting the network. This wallet serves as your individual wallet and also as a support for that system. Therefore, remember that it will take up 8-9 gigabytes of one’s computer’s memory. After you install the wallet, it will take as much as each day for the wallet to sync with the network. That is normal, does not harm your computer, and makes the system as a whole more secure, so it’s a good idea.