Getting to Know Ethereum

As long as they are not too long, I love reading articles and listening to presentations that I do not understand. And one of the topics that offers great opportunities to do this is blockchain.

Whether you are a bitcoin skeptic or not, there is little doubt that the technology that supports bitcoin – blockchain – is now mainstream. Lots of folks are experimenting with it to figure out ways to lower transaction costs. And one of the experiments is called ehtereum.

At the most basic level, you can distinguish bitcoin and ethereum this way. Bitcoin is a type of money and nothing else. Ethereum can be money like bitcoin, but it offers a whole range of new functions as well. Indeed, it allows developers to add functionality like an app store allows you to download apps to your smartphone to add functionality to the phone.

The thinking is that enabling this will open the door to lots of applications. And applications are developing. Al Wenger argues that blockchain programming is developing in a path that is similar to the way that open source developed a while back. In other words, it kind of snuck up on lots of people.

So if you want to get a primer on how ethereum works, Fred Wilson has a  25-minute video that gives you the technical basics. I listened, smiled and said, I can’t wait to see how it works in the real world.

And if the above video is to technical, here is a very, very short Here is a very short description of what bitcoin and ethereum are trying to do. Enjoy!

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