Ethereum is a global, open-source platform for decentralised applications. Some define ethereum as a new era of internet where everyone has access to an open financial system. An internet built on neutral, open-access infrastructure, controlled by no company or person. Ethereum can be used to build all kind of new applications on the ethereum blockchain.
Who developed ethereum ?
Ethereum was developed by Vitalik Buterin in the year 2015 and ever since it's been gaining popularity in the crypto and the blockchain community. Ethereum has been used by developers, banks, entrepreneurs, engineers and many crypto enthusiasts to develop simple to complex applications ranging from computer games to solve real world issues.
What are smart contracts ?
Smart contracts are the building blocks of ethereum blockchain. A smart contract is a self executing contract with the terms of the agreement between buyer and seller being directly written into lines of code. Computer scientist Nick Szabo can be credited with the idea, which he proposed in the late 1990s. He used the example of a vending machine to explain the concept, stating that it could be viewed as a precursor to the modern smart contract. In the case of a vending machine, there is a simple contract being executed. Users insert coins, and in return, the machine dispenses a product of their choosing. A smart contract applies this kind of logic in a digital setting. You could specify something simple in the code like return “Hello, World!” when two ether is sent to this contract.
Ethereum use cases in the modern world
Many developers all over the world are building applications on Ethereum, and inventing new kinds of applications, many of which you can use today:
Cryptocurrency wallets that let you make cheap, instant payments with ETH or other assets
Financial applications that let you borrow, lend, or invest your digital assets
Decentralized markets, that let you trade digital assets, or even trade “predictions” about events in the real world
Games where you own in-game assets, and can even make real money
The Ethereum community is the largest and most active blockchain community in the world which includes developers, cryptoeconomic researchers, artists, cypherpunks, mining organizations, ETH holders, gamers, app developers, grandmothers, anarchists and fortune 500 companies. Ethereum is maintained and improved over time by a diverse global community of contributors who work on everything from the core protocol to consumer applications.
How do I get Ethereum ?
You can buy ethereum or mine them using mining, which is the process of creating a block of transactions to be added to the Ethereum blockchain. Miners essentially process pending transactions and are awarded block rewards in the form of ether, the Ethereum network's native currency, for each block generated.
Anyone is able to mine on the Ethereum network using their computer. However, not everyone is able to mine Ether profitably. In most cases, miners must purchase dedicated computer hardware in order to mine profitably.
What are the costs associated with mining?
- Potential costs of the hardware necessary to build and maintain a mining rig
- Electrical cost of powering the mining rig
- If you are mining in a pool, mining pools fees typically charge a flat % fee of each block generated by the pool
- Potential cost of equipment to support mining rig (ventilation, energy monitoring, electrical wiring, etc.)
- Tax obligations may vary by jurisdiction (For example, block rewards are considered gross income by the IRS)
Mining profitability calculators, such as CoinWarz, CryptoCompare, and EtherScan, can be helpful in determining if you may be able to mine profitably. Note that mining calculators may not 100% accurate and it may be useful to compare and contrast several results.
What is an Ethereum wallet, and which one should I use?
Wallets are applications that makes it easy to hold and send ETH, as well as interact with applications built on Ethereum.
Want to install a wallet? Here are a few options:
- MetaMask browser extension and mobile wallet for iOS and Android
- MyCrypto web-based wallet
- TrustWallet mobile wallet for iOS and Android
- MyEtherWallet client-side wallet
- Argent mobile wallet for iOS and Android, optimized for DeFi
- Coinbase Wallet mobile wallet for iOS and Android
- Gnosis Safe security oriented multi-signature wallet
To learn more about ethereum, Visit Ethereum Learn