Cryptocurrencies, block chain, and what it all means

Even if you don’t personally own any, chances are good that you’ve heard of cryptocurrencies. Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, Dogecoin. What are they, how do they work, and where is this whole thing going?

Near the end of 2017, I sat down with Gianni D’Alerta, the marketing director at Decentral, which — among other things — is the company behind the cryptocurrency wallet Jaxx. Since we did this interview, the prices of the various cryptocurrencies have failed and risen, prompting media coverage of a supposed crash and fueling speculation that maybe the Bitcoin bubble had burst.

Regardless of your opinion on this stuff, I think you’ll find that this conversation with Gianni shows that the cryptocurrency phenomenon is about a lot more than speculation with play money. There’s a lot at play here, from politics to technology to a total revolution in the world’s relationship to its money — and that’s likely true even if none of the cryptocurrencies we discuss here survive in the long term. 

In this chat, Gianni and I go over some of the basics, but this interview will be less of a cryptocurrency 101 and more of a discussion of the broader implications of the technology. Full disclosure: I’m not an expert, and I even ask some dumb questions.

Hopefully, this will serve a starting point for you in exploring this issue and familiarizing yourself with what cryptocurrencies and blockchain are all about.


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Nicolás Antonio Jiménez is the founder of DADE. When he's not working on this site, he's the senior editor of Cigar Snob Magazine, an internationally distributed lifestyle magazine.
Nick is also a Miami native, Cuban-American, and graduate of the Missouri School of Journalism.