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Created in April 2011, Namecoin was the first altcoin. Although it also functions as a currency, Namecoin’s primary purpose is to decentralize domain-name registration, which makes internet censorship much more difficult. As its place among the top ten cryptocurrency market caps suggests, Namecoin has remained one of the most successful altcoins throughout its short lifespan.

However, some altcoins innovate by experimenting with useful features Bitcoin does not offer. For example, Darkcoin hopes to provide a platform for completely anonymous transactions, BitShares describes itself as “a fair version of Wall Street,” and Ripple serves as a protocol users can employ to make inter-currency payments with ease. Some altcoin ecosystems, such as CounterParty and Mastercoin, even utilize the Bitcoin blockchain to secure their platform.
The list goes on with Stellar, Monero, Neo, Ethereum Classic, Tezos, Maker, and BAT all getting good news and positive developments over the past couple of months but not seeing any beneficial price action. It seems that all those that have been burnt during the first half of the year are out of the market and are too afraid to get back in. Cryptocurrency levels now are back to mid-2017 prices and it will take a lot more than positive news to see them surging again.
WinMiner will be launching its WinMiner token on the Aion network, marking the first token sale on the protocol and a pivotal step for both projects. Aion’s ability to support the large and constantly growing user base of WinMiner in a cost-effective manner is yet another one of the project’s strong points. Every token holder will be provided with an Aion wallet.
Founded in 2012 as OpenCoin, Ripple got its current name in 2015. The San Franciscan computer software company Ripple Labs was co-founded by Ryan Fugger, Chris Larsen, and Jed McCaleb with the intent to create a decentralized monetary system that would empower individuals to create their own money. Interestingly, McCaleb branched off in 2014 to create Stellar.
Another area ‘’ripe’’ for disruption is the money transfer market. The market is currently dominated by large players like Western Union and MoneyGram, WU for example can earn upwards of 10 percent per transaction on international remittances. By comparison, a bitcoin transaction shouldn’t cost more than 5 percent even after accounting for all exchange and bank wire fees for both the buyer and the seller on each side of the remittance. If no fiat currency is involved, sending and receiving bitcoins is almost free and costs 0.0001 btc regardless of the amount. This is around 9 cents at current btc prices.
Among the numerous websites providing Bitcoin exchange services, the positive reputation of CEX.IO makes it worth the trust of the users all over the world. With the customer base of over 1,000,000, the platform can be recognized as the one that can be relied on. Starting your Bitcoin trading on a platform with substantial history, you will benefit from a deep understanding of the market and customers’ needs.
If these cryptocurrencies do have a healthy number of companies producing ASICs and have avoided centralization, they still are using algorithms that take longer to verify than SHA2. Therefore, at best a cryptocurrencies with merely a hashing algorithm change are as good as an exact clone of Bitcoin and not better (however since Bitcoin already exists, an exact clone of Bitcoin has no innovation or value). If the hashing algorithm is slower, as most altcoin algorithms are, it is a disadvantage because it takes more processing time to validate a block and increases the number of organic re-orgs (makes it easier to double spend).

"We have an acceptable usage policy, which all students and employees have to view and agree to. And in the policy it says that you can't use institutional resources for personal gain, or for a crypto currency," said Patricia Patria, the vice president for information technology and chief information officer at Massachusetts' Worchester Polytechnic Institute (WPI).
BTC-E does accept US clients. However, starting from the middle of December 2013, the company stopped processing US dollar wires or any wires connected to a US bank. Here is an email reply to a customer’s question on this: ‘’We don’t accept international wire transfers from US Citizens or from US Banks. All transfers from US Citizens or US Bank will be refused by bank.’’
Similar, even in name, to an initial public offering (IPO) in which a private company’s stock first becomes public, an ICO happens when a cryptocurrency startup wants to raise funding in order to further the development of their coin. The startup releases some of their coins (often referred to as “tokens”) to traders, who purchase these tokens in the hope that the project succeeds and those coins gain value. If the predefined minimum funding is not reached, the money is sometimes returned to the traders.
Although Bitcoin is innovative and massively influential, it has some problems that developers are trying to fix with their own products. There is an altcoin that makes faster transactions, there is an altcoin that is less volatile, there is an altcoin that is more private and so on. There are more than one and a half thousand altcoins on the market at the day this text is written, according to coinmarketcap.com. Altcoins are playing a very important role by expanding boundaries of blockchain possibilities and the scope of applications.
Around 2008, Satoshi Nakamoto founded Bitcoin. At the time, a paper was published through the Cryptography Mailing List. The first Bitcoin software client was released in 2009, and he collaborated with many other developers on the open-source team, careful never to reveal his identity. By 2011, the enigmatic Bitcoin founder had disappeared. His peers understood how valuable this cryptocurrency was, and worked feverishly to develop it to its maximum potential.
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