BBC Learning English 6 Minute English Bitcoin: digital crypto-currency

Bitcoin Vocabulary

Offline wallets tend to be safer though they are harder to access. Tokenization is the procedure of moving assets to a representation of their value on the blockchain. It is about changing any asset into the amount of bitcoins that correspond to its real value. Public key is a string crucial in the process of submitting/getting crypto. Private key is more secure, but experts recommend combining both for the increased protection of cryptocurrency. Hashing happens when a specific key is converted into a different value.

A digital currency is a form of digitized money that uses blockchain technology to verify and secure transactions. The reason for that is to incentivize miners to invest in businesses and do the necessary research and development to efficiently grow the circulation of bitcoin transactions. A Bitcoin wallet is loosely the equivalent of a physical wallet on the Bitcoin network. The wallet actually contains your private key(s) which allow you to spend the bitcoins allocated to it in the block chain. Each Bitcoin wallet can show you the total balance of all bitcoins it controls and lets you pay a specific amount to a specific person, just like a real wallet.


One (1) bitcoin (BTC or B⃦) equals a million bits (1,000,000bits). This makes for ease of transacting with goods and services. Proof-of-Stake is just another, less popular method to add blocks to a blockchain. It derives the safety and consensus systems from the relay chain. That is the only difference between parachain and blockchain.

Bitcoin Vocabulary

Stay informed and spot emerging risks and opportunities with independent global reporting, expert commentary and analysis you can trust. Any person who uses a credit card must know how important it is to prevent unauthorized charges. The bit is referred to as the sub-unit of Bitcoin – 1,000,000 bits is equal to 1 bitcoin (BTC). To know more about Bitcoin, please read our detailed guides on cryptocurrency.

Pegged Currency

If the address was incorrect, though we’d be happy to send you another order to the correct address, it will have to be at your cost. White Paper — In the crypto world, a white paper is a document that explains the intentions and strategies as well as the technical aspects of a project in detail. Whale — A whale is someone who has a lot of money to trade and can generate massive price increases or price drops. Tether — Tether (USDT) is a cryptocurrency whose value tries to mirror that of the US dollar. Tangle — Tangle is the alternative to blockchain used by IOTA.

  • A smart contract is a digital agreement that contains a predefined, automated digital script, allowing software to execute the terms of the agreement once certain conditions are met.
  • The trades take place right between the e-wallets of the participants.
  • The corresponding private key (mathematically linked to the public key/address) is used to spend/transfer cryptocurrency.
  • A scoring mechanism to help ensure that expensive data storage isn’t consumed by lower quality and spam.

This implies a hand shake i.e. a particular transaction has been sorted out by the network, added to a block of transactions and are most likely irreversible. Transactions receive a confirmation when they are included in a block and for each subsequent block. For low value transactions, a single confirmation may be considered to be secured, however waiting for 6 confirmations or more when Bitcoin Vocabulary dealing with huge volume of Bitcoins is considered best practice. The more confirmations that get stacked on top of your blocks’ transaction, the less the risk of getting your transaction reversed. Decentralised

Most cryptocurrencies are by very nature, decentralised. They are not governed or maintained by a central authority, but are jointly maintained by all their participants.

Ethereum Transaction

The percentage that a debtor has to return is also considered. By setting up high returns of this type, some cryptocurrency platforms motivate users to invest more. Automated market maker (AMM) serves as a part of a decentralized exchange. A special math equation is required to make the transactions happen. No counterparties are involved in the process of price formation. The trades take place right between the e-wallets of the participants.

Bitcoin Vocabulary


Launched in 2009, Bitcoin is the world’s first cryptocurrency. One bitcoin comprises 100,000,000 satoshis (the smallest unit of value). Memory pool, files with data about valid transactions that are not included into the block as they are unconfirmed. A well-formed block which is no longer part of the difficultywise-longest and well-formed blockchain. Not to be confused with an Orphan Block (which has no known parent in the longest block chain).