Cryptocurrencies and other blockchain assets are what I and others like to refer to as “smart money.” They are designed to remove the need for intermediary third parties such as banks and replace them with a consensus protocol. This allows a group of anonymous parties to build a trustworthy network and ledger, cutting out the need for a centralized authority figure.
The goal of blockchain is to create a self-serving, self-governing ecosystem. It incentivizes participants (miners in the simple case) to be truthful by rewarding them transaction fees as income and block rewards, which are additional respective coins. Cryptocurrencies aim to provide improvements to obsolete interactions and solutions. This can be accomplished with a few lines of code and an ecosystem.
Cryptocurrencies are customizable assets that can function as a store of value, a transfer of wealth, and a self-executing smart contract. Smart contracts automate the rules of a contract onto the blockchain and execute when conditions of the contract are met. These features, coupled with the fact that they are highly speculative investment vehicles, make cryptocurrency an exciting new opportunity for the innovative investor. Blockchain is here to stay as it is a revolutionary solution of making the outdated interaction of data and wealth smarter, by trusting a network of unknown individuals to maintain and update a ledger, that is blockchain, through the reward incentivization, that is cryptocurrency.
Cryptocurrencies present certain challenges to the investment community that involve but are not limited to, technology, volatility, and regulatory.
In the next article in this series, we will be exploring blockchain, the technology behind these cryptocurrencies.