Current price Ethereum:
What’s Ethereum? Basic information
When you think about Ethereum, you probably imagine a cryptocurrency like Bitcoin (BTC) or Ripple. But in fact, it’s much more than that. Ethereum is an open source platform based on a blockchain technology. It allows programmers to create and implement decentralized applications.
Ethereum is like the Internet, in regards to how it works. Nowadays, massive amount of information is stored on clouds or in hands of technological giants like Google and social networking ones like Facebook. All those companies need specialized staff, who’s job is to keep all the users’ information safe and secure. However, a risk of cyber attacks is very high and the tactics the cyber criminals use are very sophisticated. That poses a threat to the data security, makes it possible for our data to get stolen or modified without our knowledge.
Why do we mention all those thighs? Because, that’s where Ethereum fits in. The basic principle of Ethereum is to eliminate the third parties, currently in charge of data protection and this can be done thanks to the blockchain technology. It means, the information is no longer stored on separate servers, but is distributed among a huge number of computers around the world. All data is public, which makes the possible destruction or modification much more difficult.
Data stored on a single server can get lost or modified very easily. If it’s spread over multiple machines a single user will not be able to destroy it. The only way to do it, would be a 51% attack, but that means, that over a half of network users would have to cooperate in a crime. With millions of worldwide servers in question, that’s virtually impossible.
The idea of creating Ethereum was guided by the vision of constructing so called ‘world computer’, a massive network capable of supporting variety of applications, without third parties’ involvement. A substantial advance that Ethereum has over other blockchains, is that it’s programmable. What does it mean? It means that it can be used, to build new applications: cryptocurrencies wallets, financial platforms, games and many others.
What is Ether (ETH)?
A lot of blockchains have their own cryptocurrencies. Ethereum is not an exception – it has Ether (ETH). Very often, this name is used interchangeably with Ethereum, which leads to those two terms mixing together in meaning. But it is important to distinguish them, as they serve different purposes.
Ethereum and Ether (ETH)
What is it?
What is its purpose?
Ether, not unlike Bitcoin, can be used as virtual money, any quantity can be transferred from one end of the world, to the other. Investors consider ETH to be a speculative asset as well. Its exchange rate fluctuates heavily, just like in case of other cryptocurrencies.
Fun fact: Ether is frequently called a fuel for the applications, located on decentralized Ethereum network.
What’s Gaz and Gwei in Ether?
Though, at first sight, this chapter may seem complicated and hard to understand, the information it contains is easy to absorb. Each time, a user wants to transfer ETH or other ERC20 tokens, he needs to pay a calculation fee. The fees are in a so called gas and gas is always paid for in Ether.
It is irrelevant, whether your transaction gets confirmed or not - you still need to pay the calculation fee. Why? Because, the cryptocurrency miners must verify and complete it and to do that, they need the computing power. So, you pay for the calculation as much as for the transaction itself.
The transaction fees are presented on Etherscan.io in both USD and ETH. They are not charged by MyEtherWallet or any other service provider. They’re paid out directly to the remote miners, who excavate Ethereum blockchains, place them on blocks and secure them.
It is important to distinguish two terms: gas limit and gas price. Each transaction fee is equal to gas limit multiplied by gas price.
Total transaction fee = gas limit * gas price
Imagine, you want to fill up the gas tank in your car. Gas limit would be the total capacity of the tank. Gas price would be the cost of one liter of the fuel. Let’s assume the price of 1 liter at 2,5 USD. In case of Ethereum it would be 20 GWEI per unit. If you wish to fill you tank to full, say it’s 10 liters, it would cost you 25 USD.
In case of Ethereum the limit is 21 000 units. If the price of the unit is 20 GWEI, then the cost would be 0,00042 ETH.
Gas limit is the maximum, you are willing to spend on a transaction. Thanks to that restriction, possible mistakes in the contract can be avoided. Gas units required for a transaction are predefined. You need to own a certain amount of gas, to cover the calculation cost, otherwise the transaction will fail because of ‘lack of gas’.
Unused gas never leaves your wallet. If you decide, after entering MyEtherWallet, to transfer 1 ETH to a new address using 400 000 unit of gas, your account will be debited with only the standard limit of 21 000 of units. The remaining 370 000 units will be credited back to you.
If you wish to pay less for a transaction, you can do that, by lowering your price per gas unit. However, you must remember, that the price you set speeds up or slows down the transaction speed.
40 GWEI will, most likely, move you to the next block immediately
2 GWEI will move you in a few minutes
All transaction fees are paid out directly to the miners, who then decides on prioritizing the transactions. Most of them sort the transactions by gas price, from highest to lowest. If you’re in a rush, set your highest possible price to outrun the queue. If you have time to spare, set a price high enough, for one of the miners to finally accept your transaction.
Want an insight into the transactions accepted by the miners? Go here: EthGasStation
OK, so now you know what a gas is, but what does GWEI stand for then? It’s nothing but a unit of Ether. It’s an equivalent of 1 000 000 000 WEI, the smallest, basic ETH unit.
Who created Ethereum?
This decentralized network was founded by Russian Canadian programmer – Vitalik Buetin. As opposed to Bitcoin creator, he is not anonymous. What is interesting, is that since his childhood years he demonstrated above average abilities. Buterin was born in Russia and lived there till he was six years old. Emigrated to Canada with his parents after that time.
His special skills got very quickly recognized. He was placed in a gifted children class at sight. Mostly interested in math, this primary school kid was able to add three digits numbers in his mind, three times faster than his peers. He discovered his passion for programming in high school, in Toronto. In 2012 he reached finals of International Olympiad in Informatics, placed third in the competition and already had the idea for creating Ethereum in his mind.
What made him do it? It all started with a suggestion, that Bitcoin would only require a script language to enable applications creation. However, Buterin’s suggestion did not receive a lot of attention, so he decided to create his own platform based on hid idea. He described it in the white paper end of 2013 for the first time.
Ethereum was presented to the world in 2014. Experts like Joe Lubin, Charles Hoskinson, Gavin Wood, Antony Di Loro, and Mihai Alise were a part of his team.
Ether vs. Bitcoin - differences
Ether vs. Bitcoin
Year of creation
Vitalik Buterin – Russian Canadian programmer
Satoshi Nakamoto – unknown
Prize per block
Maximum coin number
109 179 339 ETH
18 146 762 BTC
Current price per coin
(as of 07.01.2020)
7 875,62 USD
Ether, as opposed to Bitcoin, have unlimited supply. That means it can be impacted by inflation.
Hard fork Ethereum – what is that?
If you were ever interested in the subject of decentralized autonomous organizations (abbr. DOA), you surely know the reason behind the Ethereum network rupture, so called hard fork. If not – worry not! We will tell you the whole story from the very beginning.
In May 2016 Slock.It team founded their own decentralized autonomous organization they called The DAO. In less than a month, the project raised 12.7 million ETH from its investors. That was equal to 150 million USD at the time. It was one of the biggest crowdfunding case in history. Although, at the beginning, things went according to plan, on 17th June 2016, as a result of cybercrime, a huge amount of money was taken from The DAO’s funds. One of the hackers found a whole in the code, which allowed him to steal 3,6 million ETH – 70 million USD.
The hacker responsible for the attack did not consider him guilty, as he did not do anything, the code would not allow for. The hacker sent requests to the DAO intelligent contract, asking to get his ETH credited back. He did it multiple times, before the intelligent contract accounted for the previous transactions. While working on the contract, the programmers did not consider a very important issue. The contracts send the ETH first and then accounts for them in the internal token.
Of course, this error did not occur in the Ethereum itself, but in one of the applications based on the net. The code written for The DOA had many flaws. To retrieve the stolen coins, the Ethereum community have decided, to implement the hard fork. It was the only possible solution. Ethereum blockchain was split into two parts: Ethereum (ETH) and Ethereum Classic (ETC). This way, the funds were returned to the rightful owners.
To sum up: Hord fork was nothing but an implementation of changes to the protocol, that prevented out-of-date chains to accept blocks, generated by the latest software and according to the latest rules. Chains not subjected to update, pursue a direction different, than the one initially taken by the program creators. This way, the blockchains gets split into two: with the same history, but different future.
Worth knowing: Many programmers claims, that the code is sacred. According to them, any modifications are unjustified
How much does ETH cost? How to check its price in a chart?
The current price of Ether is around 143 USD (as of 07.01.2020). Before you decide on investing in ETTH, you need to remember, that the cryptocurrencies exchange rates are unstable, they fluctuate heavily. The ETH value in the given moment can be influenced by many various factors.
How to check Ether values in a chart? It does not matter, which platform you are using, the main principle is the same. The horizontal axis represents time period, you can extend or shorten it from daily to weekly, monthly, yearly etc. The vertical axis shows the price in fiat money (traditional one, like USD or PLN). The green and red bars located at the bottom of the chart, reflect volume of transactions (they are present in professional charts).
Currently, Ethereum is placed second on the CoinMarketCap ranking. It’s one of the most popular altcoins. The value of each cryptocurrency is presented as market capitalization. The price itself is not the element, that decides where the given coin is placed. How to calculate the market capitalization of ETH? You just need to multiply its price, by the number of coins currently in circulation.
Ether listing. Which stock exchange is it available at?
The ETH is one the most popular cryptocurrencies, second after Bitcoin, and it’s listed on the virtual money stock exchange. Let’s focus the most popular ones. But before we do that, it’s worth mentioning, that they can be divided into two main categories: crypto-crypto stock exchange (transaction can be made using cryptocurrencies only) and crypto-fiat stock exchange (transaction can be made using fiat money).
In case of the first ones, the user must be already in possession of another cryptocurrency and use it for payment. Crypto-crypto stock exchange does not operate on fiat money, like USD or PLN.
Examples of ETH cryptocurrency stock exchange
Crypto-crypto stock exchange
Trading is possible only with the use of cryptocurrencies. They do not operate on fiat money, like USD or PLN.
Crypto-fiat stock exchange
User can buy cryptocurrencies with fiat money, like USD or PLN.
Worth knowing! there is another way to categorize the cryptocurrency stock exchange. There are centralized stock exchange (controlled by a company or an institution) and decentralized ones (based on blockchain). Example of decentralized stock exchange is McAfeeDex, created by British American programmer and entrepreneur John McAfee. However, these platforms are not very popular. You cannot use a transaction bot, therefore their transaction volume is lower than on centralized stock exchange.
ETH wallet. Which one to choose?
To get in possession of Ether, you need to assign it to the public address of your cryptocurrency wallet. Though, there are categories than can be used to divide them, they all operate in the same way.
Cryptocurrency wallet has two keys: public and private. You transfer the purchased ETH to the address of the public key. The private one will give you the access to your funds, by using it you will also confirm your transactions.
Remember: Do not think of your cryptocurrency wallet as a kind of a savings account. In case you lose your private key, no one will be able to help you in retrieving the funds you stored there!
Ether (ETH) cryptocurrency wallets
MyEtherWallet – interface for generating Ether wallets. It’s also a freeware software, which means, that you can download it to your machine and then generate the wallet in a safe, offline mode. Instruction on how to do that can be found here.
How to excavate Ether? ETH mining
ETH is excavated with the use of a special equipment, called cryptocurrency excavators. These machine perform complex calculations, in order to receive a prize, in a form of ETH block. That requires a huge computing power. People involved in mining are simply called cryptocurrency miners.
Ether excavation is necessary to secure the Ethereum network. That is why, the currency is called a fuel for the blockchain. Without Ether, the platform would not run smoothly.
In August 201,5 the founder of Ethereum Vitalik Buterin decided, to gradually move away from Proof of Work (PoW) and towards the Proof of Stake (PoS). In his opinion, that is the key for Ethereum reaching its full potential. Implementation is planned for Q1 2020.
By: Karolina Kropopek
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