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Bitcoin uses peer-to-peer technology to function with no central authority or banks; managing transactions and the issuing of bitcoins is carried out together by the network. Bitcoin is open-source; its design is public, nobody owns or controls Bitcoin and everyone can participate. Through many of its unique properties, Bitcoin allows exciting uses that could not be dealt with by any preceding payment system. .

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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 without the need for intermediaries.7

Transactions are verified by network nodes via cryptography and listed in a public distributed ledger called a blockchain. Bitcoin was invented by an unknown person or group of people using the name Satoshi Nakamoto9 and released as open-source applications in 2009.10 Bitcoins are made as a reward for a procedure known as mining.

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

Bitcoin has been criticized because of its use in illegal transactions, its own high power consumption, price volatility, thefts from exchanges, and also the possibility that bitcoin is an economic bubble.13 Bitcoin has also been used as an investment, even though several regulatory agencies have issued investor alarms about bitcoin.14

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 posted to some cryptography mailing list.16 Nakamoto implemented the bitcoin software as open-source code and published it in January 2009.171810 Nakamoto's identity remains unknown.9.

In January 2009, the bitcoin network was made when Nakamoto mined the very 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 either a timestamp and a comment on the instability caused by fractional-reserve banking.21:18.

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The recipient of the first bitcoin transaction was cypherpunk Hal Finney, that created the check that very first reusable proof-of-work system (RPOW) in 2004.22 Finney downloaded the bitcoin software on its release , and on 12 January 2009 obtained ten bitcoins out of Nakamoto.2324 Other early cypherpunk supporters were creators of bitcoin predecessors: Wei Dai, founder of b-money, and Nick Szabo, founder of bit golden.25 In 2010, the earliest known commercial transaction using bitcoin happened 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 awake key and control of this code over to Gavin Andresen. Andresen afterwards became lead programmer at the Bitcoin Foundation.2829 Andresen then sought to decentralize control. This left opportunity for controversy to grow over the future development path of bitcoin.3029.

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After ancient"proof-of-concept" transactions, the first major users of bitcoin were black markets, for example 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 about $214 million.31:222

In 2011, the price started at $0.30 each bitcoin, growing to $5.27 for the year. The price rose to $31.50 on 8 June. Within a month that the price fell to $11.00. The Visit Your URL next month it fell Resources 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

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

In March 2013 that the blockchain briefly split into two independent chains with different rules. The two blockchains operated simultaneously for half an hour, each with its own version of the transaction history. Normal operation was revived when the majority of the network downgraded to version 0.7 of the 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% to $45 within the next 3 days.35 On 15 May 2013, US government captured accounts associated with Mt.

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