If you’re an Internet enthusiast, you’ve almost certainly heard of Bitcoin. You’ve probably also heard of the rise—and now progressive fall—of that cryptocurrency. But what’s all the hullabaloo about? Frankly, I barely have a clue. That’s why, in an attempt to keep up with this technological and financial trend, I’ve read Cryptocurrency 2nd Edition: Mining, Investing, and Trading Bitcoin Ethereum, Litecoin, Ripple, Dash, Gridcoin, Iota, Digibyte, Dogecoin, Emercoin, Putincoin, Auroracoin and Others by Abraham K. White.
For those who aren’t techno-savvy, Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies seem as foreign as Old English manuscripts. In Cryptocurrency, White tries to simplify the concept and the process of obtaining cryptocurrency. White covers everything from the mining of Bitcoin (the original cryptocurrency) to the pros and cons of alternative cryptocurrencies such as Ethereum and Litecoin. He also explains the politico-cultural and financial controversies tied to each of kind of cryptocurrency and how the entire concept could revolution the world’s economy. White provides virtually everything you need to know in order to invest in the cryptocurrency trend, the only problem being that even a simplified description is still very complicated.
I have to start this review by noting that I’m not a computer nerd, not the kind with the mind to create and add onto blockchains. I got this book in the hopes of strengthening my understanding of Bitcoin and how I might profit from it, so I was looking for something which could explain the basic concepts to me as well as Bitcoin’s ebbs and flows.
This book provides all of this information and more. White explains Bitcoin and several other forms of cryptocurrency and provides a glossary. However, it is not a light read. I had to re-read multiple sections, and I highly recommend giving the book more than just one read in order to fully understand it.
White’s writing is not at fault. It’s smooth and uses as simple and straightforward a vocabulary as you can with this topic. Nevertheless, unless you already have a basic knowledge of the technology behind cryptocurrency, you’ll want to take your time digesting the material before making any judgments or decisions.
White could have helped the reader’s understanding more with a better book structure. It was a good idea to frame the chapters on the different cryptocurrencies rather than starting or ending the book with them. Regardless, I don’t think that White should have saved the chapter on blockchains for the finale. I was incredibly confused by the concept earlier in the book and would have appreciated this chapter sooner. This chapter also causes the book to end rather abruptly, going from a concluding note on blockchains and their pros/cons straight to the glossary. I’m glad for the chapter, I just wanted it before White explained the different cryptocurrency platforms and wish that he had ended on a general conclusion about cryptocurrency and its future.
Cryptocurrency opened my eyes to a world I didn’t even know existed. I knew of Bitcoin, but I had no idea that cryptocurrency was so prominent. White takes readers through the history of virtual money as well as the technical details of each kind, including how Bitcoin emerged in the first place. He illustrates the issues that different governments have with cryptocurrency, all of which are valid, but also shows readers how virtual money can benefit individuals and the world as a whole. He mostly emphasizes the decentralized nature of virtual money such as Bitcoin, but I still have many questions as to how exactly the peer-to-peer transaction system works.
All in all, Cryptocurrency by Abraham K. White is a great tool for learning about this phenomenon. It takes some time and brainpower to read, as does most technological topics, but the possibilities will capture the imagination of anyone with a shred of interest in finances and technology. If the discussions in this book are any real indicator, the current dip in the value of cryptocurrency is only temporary and you should get in on it while it’s still affordable. You shouldn’t jump right into Bitcoin. Rather, check out this book and see which of the cryptocurrency platforms is right for you. Despite the current devaluation, cryptocurrency seems to be here to stay and we should probably get to know it better.
You can buy Cryptocurrency by Abraham K. White as an e-book and in print through Amazon.