The Ultimate Guide to Bitcoin

The Ultimate Guide to Bitcoin

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The whole truth about Bitcoin...So you can decide for yourself!

Bitcoin: it's the worldwide virtual currency everyone's talking about. But most explanations of Bitcoin are completely bewildering-they're either written by people in thrall with it or by those appalled by the very notion of an alternative currency. What's the real story? How does Bitcoin work? Where did it come from? What's it good for? How do you get, store, and spend Bitcoins? And should you?

The Ultimate Guide to Bitcoin answers all your questions-honestly, objectively, and in plain English. Michael Miller has spent his life demystifying complicated ideas and technologies: he's helped more than 1,000,000 readers in over 150 easy-tounderstand books. Now, he explains Bitcoin in ways everyone can understand.

Miller will help you decide for yourself if Bitcoin should be part of your life. And if the answer is "Yes," he'll help you make the most of it!

Is Bitcoin the currency of the future-or just the latest scam?
Why does anyone think Bitcoins have value?
Are Bitcoins legal?
Are Bitcoins really untraceable?
How and where can I buy Bitcoins?
How do I choose a Bitcoin exchange?
How do I find out what my Bitcoins are worth?
Can I trade Bitcoin just like other currencies?
Can I really mine my own new Bitcoins?
Is Bitcoin taxable?
Where should I store my Bitcoins?
How much Bitcoin fraud and theft really exists?
Which merchants accept Bitcoin?
How safe-or risky-is Bitcoin?
How does Bitcoin compare to other virtual currencies?
What's the future of Bitcoin?
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Product details

  • Paperback | 240 pages
  • 152 x 226 x 16mm | 240g
  • Que Corporation,U.S.
  • United States
  • English
  • 0789753243
  • 9780789753243
  • 1,874,272

Table of contents

1 Bitcoin: The Future of Currency? 1
Bitcoin in the News 2
What Is Bitcoin? 3
No, Really, What Is Bitcoin? 5
What Famous People Are Saying About Bitcoin 6
Does Bitcoin Really Matter to You? 7

2 Understanding Virtual Currency 9
What Is Currency? 10
What Is Virtual Currency? 11
What Are Digital Currency and Cryptocurrency? 13
Is Bitcoin a Virtual Currency? 14

3 A Short History of Bitcoin 17
Virtual Currency Before Bitcoin 18
Then Came Bitcoin 23
Bitcoin Today 32

4 How Bitcoin Works 33
Understanding Bitcoins 34
Walking Through Some Typical Bitcoin Transactions 35
Managing Bitcoin Transactions 40
Understanding Bitcoin Denominations 42
Verifying Transactions and Creating New Bitcoins 43
Understanding Bitcoin Encryption 45

5 Determining Bitcoin Value 49
Does Bitcoin Have Value? 50
Who (or What) Decides How Much a Bitcoin Is Worth? 52
How Much Is a Bitcoin Worth, Anyway? 53
How Has Bitcoin's Value Changed Over Time? 54
Where Can You Find the Current Value of Bitcoin? 57

6 Should You Use Bitcoin? 61
Who Bitcoin Was Originally Designed For 62
Who Uses Bitcoin Today-and Why 63
Is Bitcoin for You? 67
What Next? 70

7 Trading on Bitcoin Exchanges 73
How Bitcoin Exchanges Work 74
How to Choose the Right Exchange 76
Exploring the Big Five Bitcoin Exchanges 77
Discovering Other Popular Exchanges 82
Making a Trade 85

8 Storing Bitcoins with a Bitcoin Wallet 89
Understanding Bitcoin Wallets 90
Examining Different Types of Bitcoin Wallets 91
Using a Bitcoin Wallet 97
Securing Your Bitcoin Wallet 98

9 Spending Bitcoins 103
Who Accepts Bitcoin Payments? 104
Paying with Bitcoin 108
Converting Bitcoin to Gift Cards 110
Using Bitcoin ATMs 111

10 Accepting Bitcoin Payments 115
Should You Accept Bitcoin Payments? 116
Evaluating Bitcoin Payment Processors 117
Accepting Bitcoin on Etsy 120

11 Mining Bitcoins 123
What Is Bitcoin Mining? 124
How Bitcoin Mining Works 125
Can You Be a Bitcoin Miner? 129
Joining a Bitcoin Mining Pool 134
Making Money Mining-Or Not 138

12 Speculating in Bitcoin 141
How to Speculate in Bitcoin 142
Speculating Is Risky 143
Speculating Can Pay Big Rewards 145
Should You Speculate in Bitcoin? 145
Five Tips for Speculating in Bitcoin 148

13 The Many Risks of Using Bitcoin 151
It's Not Legal Tender 152
It's Not Backed by Anything or Anybody 152
It's Not Regulated or Insured 153
You Can't Get Your Money Back 153
It's Not Completely Secure 154
It's Extremely Volatile 155
Some of the Players Are Less Than Upstanding 156
It's Not Widely Accepted 156
It's Not Understood 157
Powerful People Don't Like It 157
It's an Experiment 158
Bottom Line: You Could Lose Your Money 158

14 Exploring Other Virtual Currencies 161
Why Do We Need Even More Virtual Currencies? 162
Evaluating Alternative Virtual Currencies 163
Where Can You Trade All These Virtual Currencies? 172

15 Peering into the Future of Bitcoin 175
Scenario #1: Everything Is Awesome! 176
Scenario #2: Realizing Potential 177
Scenario #3: More of the Same 178
Scenario #4: It's Marginalized 179
Scenario #5: Hell in a Handbasket 180
Which Future Will It Be? 181

A Glossary 183

B Resources 191
Information and Advocacy 191
Pricing and Charts 192
Feeds, Forums, and Message Boards 192
Exchanges 192
Wallets 194
Payment Processors 195
Mining Hardware 195
Mining Software 195
Mining Pools 195
Other Virtual Currencies 196

C How to Read Bitcoin Charts 197
Line Pricing Charts 198
Candlestick Pricing Charts 198
Column Volume Charts 200
Combination Charts 200
Trend Lines and Channels 201

D Donating (and Accepting) Bitcoins for Charity 203
Giving with Bitcoin 203
Accepting Bitcoins for Your Charity 206

E Creating an Unhackable Paper Bitcoin Wallet 207
Understanding Paper Wallets 207
Creating a Paper Wallet 208

F Why Prices Go Down 11

G Bitcoin and Apple Pay 215

Index 217
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About Timothy L. Warner

Michael Miller has written more than 150 non-fiction how-to books over the past two decades, as well as a variety of web articles. His best-selling books include Que's Absolute Beginner's Guide to Computer Basics, The Ultimate Digital Music Guide, and Is It Safe? Protecting Your Computer, Your Business, and Yourself Online. Collectively, his books have sold more than 1 million copies worldwide.

Miller has established a reputation for clearly explaining technical topics to nontechnical readers, and for offering useful real-world advice about complicated topics. More information can be found at the author's website, located at
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