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The Cryptocurrency Glossary

Terms, concepts and acronyms explored in simple English from A-Z

 

A

Addresses

Not like your house or email address, in Crypto terms this relates to where the coin sits on the Blockchain. It also holds all transactional data relating to the trading of said coin. Usually a long string of (around 30) characters but it could also require additional identification details to be exchanged/traded.

Airdrop

Usually a free giveaway of new or growing tokens - Owners of these emerging tokens 'airdrop' bundles to users on the blockchain as a way of self-promotion.

Algorithm

A complex set of instructions designed to produce a specific outcome. Used in technology for analytics, automation and development.

Altcoin

Any coin that isn't Bitcoin - many have sprouted since Satoshi's invention.

All time high (ATH) / All time low (ATL)

Referring to the 'all time' highest or lowest price of a coin.

Anti-Money Laundering (AML)

A set of international laws and guiding principles to prevent monetary fraud happening at all societal levels. Specifically in cryptocurrencies it aims to stem the tide of illicit use and laundering through Crypto.

Application Specific Integrated Circuit (ASIC)

An often home-made device built using powerful GPU/CPU units with the sole purpose of solving hashing problems. Most commonly used in Coin Mining.

Arbitrage

If you were to take advantage of the differing exchange rates on crypto currencies between the many Exchange sites - to take profit from the difference in margins on these exchanges.

 

B

Bag

If you have a lot of any coin, you have a bag of them.

Bear/Bearish

Describing a negative change in cryptocurrency price or direction of market indicators/signals

Bitcoin

Created by the famous individual (or group - as the true identity remains a mystery) Satoshi Nakamoto; Bitcoin was the first peer-to-peer currency system created back in 2008 and continues to lead the charge as highest market value out of all the cryptocurrencies.

Blockchain/Block

The Blockchain is made of Blocks and you can think of Blocks as big bags of transactional data relating to its cryptocurrency(s). 
Once a Block becomes full of this data, another Block is added to the Blockchain.  As such you can think of the Blockchain as a Digital ledger.

The link between the blocks in the 'chain' are cryptographic signatures enshrining it's validity. Copies of this Blockchain are held and constantly updated on multiple 'nodes' so as to decentralise it's ownership as there is no 'Master' copy anywhere.

BTD/BTFD

Buy the Dip, Buy the F'ing Dip. With the 'Dip' being the lowering of a cryptocurrencies value, increasing the incentive (and twitter hype) to BTFD.

Burned

When a coin loses all it's perceived value/becomes untradeable.

Bitcoin Core

Software made to ensure validity of user transactions across the blockchain.

Bull/Bullish

The opposite to Bear/Bearish explained above. To indicate positive price movement on a cryptocurrency.

 

C

CAP

Usually used to refer to 'Market capitlization'. Explained in 'M', CAP = Supply of coin X Price of coin

Candlestick (Graph/Chart)

A 'Candle' on the graph normally represents a 'Day' of cryptocurrency trading. Used in stock/securities trading also.

Cold Wallet/Storage

Offline way to store your cryptocurrencies, could be in the form of a USB/Key like device.

Cipher

As with all code's, encryption/decrpytion requires a cipher to be performed.

Coin

Different to a Token - a Coin by crypto-definition, has it's own Blockchain behind it. Where as a Token is built upon an already established Coin's blockchain.

Digital currency based on computer code, levying complex algorithms to ensure validity and decentralisation of transaction data. Click the link in the term title to learn more.

 

D

DApps

Decentralised applications - these are the creative tools on which Bitcoin was founded.

DAO

Decentralised Autonomous organisation - An Organisation that is run by an autonomous application and with decentralised ownership spread across multiple users.

Digital Signature

A code generated by public key encryption used to digitally verify files, transactions, software etc.

Decentralised/Decentralisation

As in there isn't a singular leader/owner/master/controller - responsibility and control is shared between multiple entities. In comparison, banks have centralised ownership in that they will have one primary owner (or board of owners) with sole responsibilty.

DYOR

Do your own research. That's why your here isn't it?

Dump/Dumping

To 'dump' a bag of coins on an exchange or rather sell a lot of a cryptocurrency in one go.

 

E

Eth/Etherum

Running on its own seperate Blockchain operating with different standards/signatorys. This is arguably the second most popular crypto coin going by market capitalisation. It's creator Vitalik Buterin is a pioneer in the dApps space.

ERC/ERC-20

Several tokens use 'Ethereums Request for Comments' - the tokens standard for Smart contracts apllied across the blockchain.

Escrow

When a third-party holds crypto-funds during a transaction process to ensure the buyer receives their goods/services/assets before releasing the funds to the seller.

Exchange

A trading platform for listing, selling and exchanging cryptocurrencies against Fiat or each other. Our preferred exchange is Binance.

 

F

Faucets are a way for crypto enthusiasts and mass-adoption promoters to give back to their patreons. It allows anyone entry into the cryptocurrency world by giving them the opportunity to earn their first tokens through some form of spinning slot. They're payout timings range from anywhere between 1 minute and 48 hours depending on the site and Faucet format. Check out our Faucet list for a tried and tested collection to start with.

Fiat (currency)

Any money endorsed by a government and used by the public in everyday spending for goods and services. An example of a Fiat currency is the Pound Sterling (£) or US Dollar ($).

Fork

This can be 'Soft' or 'Hard' and relates to a change in blockchain protocol as recognised by nodes, resulting in a seperate token 'forking' from the original blockchain.

FUD

Fear, Uncertainy, Doubt. Used to refer to discord being sown by naysayers and price manipulators in an effort to drive the value of a coin/token down.

 

G

Gas

Refers to 'fees' incurred by transactions across the Ethereum network. Much like small transactions for Bitcoin being listed in 'Satoshis' - Gas fee's are listed in 'Gwei'

Genesis Block

The first Block(s) in the Blockchain.

Gwei

Bitcoin 'pennies' or fractions of bitcoins are called Satoshis. Similarly a fraction of an Ethereum Coin is called a Gwei.

 

H

Hash

Refers to Cryocraphic Hash Function

Hash Power (kH/s | MH/s | GH/s |TH/s | PH/s | EH/s)

The rate at which a computer or ASIC device can solve a cryptographic hash function.

HODL

Once upon a time someone mistyped HOLD and it stuck. Meaning to hold onto your crypto assets and don't sell.

 

I

Inital Coin Offering (ICO)

In order to get a coin off the ground in terms of market value, the creator will provide an 'initical coin offering' (ICO) to incetivise purchase and raise funds.

.io

.Io is a domain extension that stands for Input/outpu and is the favoured extension for use with API's and other applications.

 

K

Keys

Public or Private; used to authenticate users, domains and services when accessing or transacting between themselves or external entities. An additional security layer in the digital world.

 

L

Ledger

A permanent record of financial transactions, used in all forms of accounting including cryptocurrency.

Litecoin

Created by Charlie Lee, in 2011 to address some of the issue with the ever expanding Bitcoin network.

 

M

Market Capitalisation

The total number of coins in supply multiplied by the price of the coin.

Mining

All that financial data validation across coin networks/Blockchains requires a lot fo computational power to perform the verification process. Groups of people called Miners lend their computers power to a pool in order to aid the verifying of transactions in reward for fractions of the coin they are 'Mining'.

Moon

When a coin is soaring in value to the Moon.

 

N

Network

All nodes associated with the Blockhain are located across the same 'Network'.

Node(s)

Any computer connected to a coin's Blockchain Network is referred to as a 'Node'.

 

P

Peer to Peer (P2P)

Two or more nodes (computers) sharing the same network without a third-party to seperate them.

Paperwallet

An inefficient yet secure way to store your crypto - using specialised paper that prevents fraud/tampering.

Proof of Authority (PoA)

Faster than the other 'Proof of Work' methods for transactional validation acrtoss the Blockchain as it designates 'Authority' nodes to approvde transactions rather than all nodes across the Blockchain.

Proof of Stake (PoS)

Seen as a fairer alternative to (PoW) as it caps Miners ability to earn from validating based on how much of the Mined coin they hold.

Proof of Work (PoW)

The traditional 'Mining' protocol, requiring miners to provide 'Proof' of their effort as part of the Hashing algorithm before they can recieve their Block reward.

Protocols

Blockchain/Network rules set to define how Nodes, transactions and algortihms behave.

 

S

Satoshi Nakamoto

The individual, or group who created Bitcoin.

Satoshis (Sat's)

The fractional denominator of Bitcoin. Think of them like Bitcoin pennies.

Stablecoin

Any coin backed by fiat currency, like USDT (Tether, tied to the US Dollar).

SHA-256

The hashing algorithm used by Bitcoin and many other coins.

 

T

Token

The defining factor between a 'Token' and 'Coin' is a Token is built upon an already existing Coin's blockchain wheras a Coin has it's own proprietary Blockchain.

Transaction

The value of cryptocurrency being moved from one entity to another on the Blockchain network.

 

W

Wallet

A wallet is an 'Address' on the Blockchain containing a set of private Keys required to validate ownership of the coin balances held within.

Whale

Someone holding (usually) in excess of £/$1 Million of any cryptocurrency - or wealthy investors able to influence market direction through 'dumping' or otherwise.

 

This Glossary will expand as the site does to include as many of the internets Crypto-terms possible.