Cryptocurrencies may have already hit Wall Street and major business publications, but their impact on Main Street and John Doe’s wallet remain to be seen. October 31, 2018, marks the ten-year anniversary of the original publication of the Bitcoin whitepaper, yet in an era during which technology seems to move as quickly as it does, Bitcoin has scarcely any traction at all compared to the likes of Amazon, Facebook or Google.

Though the concept of cryptocurrencies may seem alien to many, the adoption and trading thereof is within reach for anyone who can understand an essay and install an app. Sufficient comprehension of money, the gold standard, fiat currency, stocks, exchanges and blockchain technology will also behoove anyone seeking to make money trading cryptocurrency.

Trading cryptocurrency is as broad a concept as making money in general. When people think of “money”, they generally think of national currencies. National currencies, as their name implies, are currencies issued by national governments. National governments often require that the currencies they issue be accepted throughout the entire nation wherein that currency is issued. National currencies not on a gold standard, in other words, without a direct fixed-rate conversion rate from that national currency to gold or some other valuable commodity, can also be categorized as fiat currencies.

National currencies are traded for one another in foreign exchange markets. Foreign exchange markets are similar to currency exchanges at airports and other places where people can trade one currency for another, but foreign exchange markets typically have lower fees or exchange rates. Exchange rates are an expression of one currency in terms of another. For example, say one US dollar is equal to 0.86 Euros. The exchange rate is then 0.86 Euros/dollar. Exchanges typically charge a fee for each trade that may be calculated at a fixed-rate or based on a percentage of the exchange rate for that trade.

Stock exchanges are similar to foreign exchanges in that they allow customers to trade one type of asset for another. Where foreign exchanges allow customers to trade national currencies, stock exchanges allow customers to trade stocks or shares of companies that are listed on that exchange. In order to be listed on a typical exchange, companies must meet certain requirements and pay fees to the stock exchange. Stock prices are updated according to how much money people are willing to exchange in order to buy and sell them.

Crypto exchanges offer services analogous to foreign currency exchanges and stock exchanges in the realm of cryptocurrencies. Crypto exchanges list a variety of cryptocurrencies which can usually be traded for national currencies or other cryptocurrencies. Like other exchanges, crypto exchanges make money by charging fees. A sufficient understanding of asset trading is essential to making money therein.

Three Generations of Blockchain

Cryptocurrencies are valuable because of an underlying technology called blockchain. With blockchain technology, multiple computers are able to continually track who has how much of any given asset While there are countless different types of cryptocurrency circulating today, blockchain technologies are often defined according to three generations: first, second, and third. The generations approximately started with Bitcoin, Ethereum, and technology similar to yet significantly different from both, respectively. Clearly, the third generation of blockchain technology is less precisely defined than the first and second generations.

First Generation

The Next Web provides an excellent history of bitcoin titled “A brief history of bitcoin – and where it’s going next“. Written by Nathan Jessop and published Mar 29, 2015, the article begins with the initial application for the encryption protocol that would become the first blockchain technology and bitcoin in Japan by Neal Kin, Vladimir Oksman, and Charles Bry in August 2008.

The article continues, detailing bitcoin’s brief yet rich and illustrious history. The first whitepaper for the bitcoin protocol was published in October 2008 under the name “Satoshi Nakamoto”. Neal Kin, Vladimir Oksman, and Charles Bry denied any connection to Nakamoto. The domain bitcoin.org, which is still operating at the time of this writing, was purchased anonymously through anonymouspeech.com. (Years later, anonymousspeech.com recommends bitcoin for security ahead of its Swiss bank accounts, and even provides a 5% discount to customers who pay with bitcoin.)

In January 2009, the first block of the bitcoin blockchain was launched, which allowed computers running certain software to “mine” the new bitcoin blocks. Also in January 2009, the first bitcoin transaction took place between Nakamoto and Hal Finney. In October of 2009, the first value of bitcoin in terms of dollars was established by the New Liberty Standard at 1 USD to 1,309 BTC. Their exchange rate was calculated based on the cost of the electricity required to run computers with bitcoin mining and transaction software.

The next year, in February 2010, dwdollar was established as the world’s premier bitcoin market. It has since ceased operations. A few months later, in May 2010, a Floridian programmer named Laslo Hanyecz sent 10,000 BTC to England where someone returned him a sum of money equal to about twenty-five dollars at the time. Hanyecz subsequently spent the money on a pizza from Papa John’s.

Two thousand ten was also the year of bitcoin’s first hack. In August 2010, hackers discovered a vulnerability which led to the generation of 184 billion Bitcoins. Of course, the value of bitcoin plummeted as word of the vulnerability spread. Some exchanges had rates as high as 1 USD to 1 bitcoin before the crash.

More vulnerabilities in the protocol were discovered in September 2010. According to TNW, in October 2010 “an inter-governmental group published a report on money laundering using new payment methods. Bitcoin, it suggested could help people finance terrorist groups.” The next month, the market cap for bitcoin reach one million dollars, which led to a resurgence in value to a less-than-best 1 USD to 2 BTC.

Utilizing bitcoin, Pretty Good Privacy, and Tor, the first anonymous online drug exchange, the Silk Road, was established in January 2011. The now-defunct site made use of a toolset a la eBay and allowed buyers to rate and review sellers and to view those of other buyers.

About one month later, in February 2011, Bitcoin reached parity with the US dollar, and in June 2011, bitcoin reached a new all-time high of thirty-one dollars to one bitcoin. The market cap of bitcoin at the time was $206 million. It is worth noting that someone who would have purchased bitcoins at the initial listed value of 1 USD to 1,309 BTC could have made a 4,057,900% return on their investment at this time.

Bitcoin remained relatively stable until June 2011, when the first major bitcoin theft occurred. From TNW: “Bitcoin Forum founder allinvain reported having 25,000 BTC taken from his digital wallet, which had an equivalent value of $375,000. In the same month, a major breach of security saw the value of the currency go from $17.51 to $0.01 per Bitcoin.” Note that TNW reports the date of this theft as June 2013, and Bitcointalk.org reports this theft as having taken place in June 2011.

Bitcoin and the first generation blockchain reached new heights in 2013, and government agencies began to take notice. In March 2013, the US Financial Crimes Enforcement Network issued one of the first government regulations regarding cryptocurrency and bitcoins when it released its guidance report for persons administering, exchanging or using virtual currency. That month, the Bitcoin market cap reached $1,000,000,000.

Also in 2013, Bitcoin was legally ruled to be a security and thus subject to regulation by the United States government with a ruling from Magistrate Judge Amos Mazzant of the Eastern District of Texas. The US Securities and Exchange Commission accused Trendon Shavers of running a Bitcoin Ponzi scheme in 2011 and 2012. Shavers operated a business under the name “Bitcoin Savings & Trust” which promised clients a 7% return on their Bitcoin investments. From Forbes:

“It is clear that Bitcoin can be used as money,” wrote Judge Mazzant in a ruling on Tuesday. “It can be used to purchase goods or services, and as Shavers stated, used to pay for individual living expenses.”

“The only limitation of Bitcoin is that it is limited to those places that accept it as currency. However, it can also be exchanged for conventional currencies, such as the U.S. dollar, Euro, Yen, and Yuan,” wrote Mazzant. “Therefore, Bitcoin is a currency or form of money, and investors wishing to invest in BTCST provided an investment of money.”

Around three months later, in November 2013, the US Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs conducted a hearing which they called “Beyond Silk Road: Potential Risks, Threats, and Promises of Virtual Currencies”. A video of the hearing, as well as written witness testimonies, are available from senate.gov. The price of one Bitcoin reached $700 that month.

Secord Generation

The beginning of the second generation of blockchain technology corresponds to the development of Ethereum in 2013. Ethereum was conceived in the mind of Vitalik Buterin. Buterin, who co-founded Bitcoin Magazine in September 2011, wrote the Ethereum white paper in November 2013.

The Ethereum white paper is an excellent reference for people interested in learning more about cryptocurrencies. The paper is somewhat technical, but that should not turn potential readers away. The concepts outlined in the paper, while abstract, are not too difficult for those willing to invest the time in learning about the blockchain. An ability to learn and understand underlying blockchain technology is essential to eventually earning profits with cryptocurrencies.

An even more technical paper on Ethereum is available. The paper, titled, “Ethereum: A Secure Decentralised Generalised Transaction Ledger” was written by Dr. Gavin Wood, and is more commonly known as the “Ethereum yellow paper”. While this paper may be too technical for many readers, the importance of understanding blockchain, or any other thing, before becoming involved with it cannot be overstated.

Ethereum expands upon Bitcoin by adding computer code to each block in the blockchain. The language used to write this code is of a stamp known as “Turing-complete”. The term derives its name from Alan Turing, the Englishman who invented the things we now call computers as mere abstract concepts before the existence of practical means to construct such machines. Languages or codes that are Turing-complete can be used to describe any computable mathematical function. Ethereum, as well as some of its advantages compared to Bitcoin, are well-summarized by Larry Loeb and Security Intelligence,

“Ethereum has at its core a way to apply arbitrary rules for ownership, transaction formats and state transition functions — taking both the state of a blockchain and a transaction for that chain and then outputting a new state as its result. It does this by way of an internal scripting language that is aware of a system’s state while being Turing-complete, which means it can encode any computation that may be performed by the system.”

Software developers can create applications on top of the Ethereum blockchain because information stored within the Ethereum blockchain includes Turing-complete code. The Ethereum white paper lists several examples of applications that can be created with this new technology including token systems, financial derivatives and stable-value currencies, identity and reputation systems, decentralized file storage, decentralized autonomous organizations, savings wallets, an insurance system, a decentralized data feed, smart multi-signature escrow, cloud computing, peer-to-peer gambling, prediction markets, and on-chain decentralized marketplaces.

Related to but not explicitly included in the Ethereum white paper is the Internet of Things, also known as the “I-o-T”. Security Intelligence reported in December 2015,

“It’s the transactions involved in the Internet of Things (IoT) ecosystem where the system will shine: Because one can trigger computation or other code action with an Ethereum account message, an IoT device can be controlled if it is connected to an Ethereum-based network.”

Ethereum made a big splash in the world of cryptocurrency with its crowdsourced funding campaign of July 2014. “Raising more than $18m, it was then the most successful crowdsale to date at the time,” according to CoinDesk. Crowdsourced funding campaigns for cryptocurrencies have since flourished to the extent that such campaigns are now referred to as “initial coin offerings” or “ICO’s”.

Third Generation

As previously mentioned, the third generation of blockchain technology is more difficult to define than the previous two generations. Due to Ethereum including an entire Turing-complete code set on its blockchain, many blockchain technologies that some might consider third generation are technologies and applications built on top of the Ethereum blockchain.

Price and Value

Like everything else in a free-market economy, the price or the valuation of cryptocurrencies is defined by how much people are willing to pay. The price is based on a mutually understood and agreed upon transaction. How much a party values something is assumed to correlate to a quantifiable amount of a liquid or mutually valuable asset.

Buy Low, Sell High

“Buy low, and sell high,” is a mantra among asset traders. The general process for making money trading assets: buy an asset at a relatively low price, wait for the price of that asset to increase, then sell the asset at a relatively high price. In theory, this simple strategy is fool-proof; however, in practice there are externalities, and there exists no perfect way to predict how price will vary over time.

Crypto and Stocks

Cryptocurrencies and corporate stocks share many common attributes. Both have monetary value, can be bought or sold, and are usually listed on one or more competing exchanges. Stocks, unlike cryptocurrencies, are dependent on a central authority. In the case of stocks, this central authority is often a government agency as a company’s articles of incorporationdefine the number of shares in that company. This dependence on a central authority is likely a significant factor in peoples’ enthusiasm towards crypto and blockchain.

IPO’s and ICO’s

When companies first issue stocks or become listed on a major stock exchange, they conduct what is called an IPO or initial public offering. The company sells a certain number of stocks that may or may not be listed on an exchange, which it then sells at a set price at the time of its IPO. As soon as the IPO starts, the price is influenced by how much people are willing to pay for it in terms of market value.

When releasing a cryptocurrency, many organizations will conduct what is called an ICO or initial coin offering. The similarity in nomenclature between IPO’s and ICO’s is not accidental; however, the two processes are not entirely analogous. While IPO’s often take place when a stock is first listed on an exchange, ICO’s often take place before a crypto is listed on an exchange. Because of this key difference, a certain portion of the total quantity of a cryptocurrency is generally sold at a fixed price. Once a crypto becomes listed on an exchange, the price of that crypto is determined by market forces.

Technology and the Information Age

Cryptocurrencies are essentially products of the Information Age. As the Digital Revolution sweeps the world, more and more information is stored and shared via computers and the Internet. Cryptocurrencies are the application of digital technology to currency. Digital technology evolves rapidly, as is demonstrable by the evolution of cell phones from briefcase-sized mobile connection stations to pocket-sized personal computers. Crypto and blockchain technology has and will continue to change and grow during the course of its own technical evolution.

Not all newer technologies are more valuable than older technologies. Outside of crypto, many technologies are used to reduce costs. For example, particle board is often used as a cheaper alternative to plywood. Today, both particleboard and plywood are used as building materials. Like building materials, it is unlikely that the invention of new crypto and blockchain technologies will outright replace existing technologies; instead, new technologies will likely be used as an alternative or as a supplement to existing technologies. In other words, Bitcoin’s being the oldest cryptocurrency should not be seen as an indication of its susceptibility to technical replacement.

Get in Early

One important factor that will ultimately determine how much money one is able to make trading crypto is the relative age of a given asset. It is worth repeating that the earliest adopters of Bitcoin earned a 4,057,900% return on their investment when Bitcoin sold for just $31 per unit. When setting up an IPO or an ICO, issuing entities attempt to price their stocks in such a way that the market will drive the price up. These entities want the price of their asset to move upward, so they set the initial price accordingly.

Many traders and investors have made money by purchasing assets at their initial value, then selling those assets days or even hours afterward. Getting involved in an asset early can also establish credibility among others who own that asset or are interested in purchasing that asset.

The number of cryptocurrencies that have failed is too high to enumerate. Cryptocurrencies, in general, are higher-risk investment assets than stocks. Companies typically do not fail immediately following their IPO; however, many ICO’s have turned out to be veritable scams. Such fraudulent ICO’s are relatively easy to stage with the proper technical knowledge. The US SEC create a fake cryptocurrency called HoweyCoins, complete with its own white paper, to illustrate just how easy it can be to set up these scams. Clicking on the site’s “About” page takes users to the SEC website, which details valuable information on how to spot scams such as HoweyCoins.

Keep Up-to-Date

Asset trading in the Information Age requires one to constantly track and follow what is going on in the world in any and every way that could possibly relate to trading those assets. Fortunately for crypto traders, many means of keeping track of such information are simple and cost-effective. A great deal of information regarding cryptocurrencies exists on TwitterTelegramreddit and Bitcointalk.

Twitter is something like a social media site combined with an RSS feed. Just like RSS, Twitter is organized by different feeds. For the most part, each different cryptocurrency has its own Twitter feed. Ethereum has its own Twitter feed, for example. It is common for important persons in the cryptocurrency space to have their own Twitter feeds as well. Several companies offer compilations and analyses of crypto and blockchain news on Twitter including CoinDeskCointelegraph, and Bitcoinist.

Telegram is a messaging platform that has become a popular forum for crypto discussion. Telegram supports both groups and channels. Groups are similar to those on other chat and messaging platforms. Channels on Telegram are more like Twitter or RSS feeds. The channel admin can post content, and anyone subscribed to that channel can view that content; however, subscribers who are not administrators are not permitted to post to channels. Some cryptocurrencies, such as Endor have both a Telegram group and a Telegram channel.

Reddit is a popular forum for a variety of topics, and it is the platform of choice for some to discuss crypto. The site is organized into topic pages called subreddits. Many cryptocurrencies have their own dedicated subreddits. Users post links to photos, articles, videos, or any other type of online content to a particular subreddit. Reddit users (also known as Redditors) are able to vote on which content they like, comment on content, and comment on other comments.

Bitcointalk is, for lack of a better term, old-school. Based on the open-source forum software Simple Machines, Bitcointalk is reminiscent of forums from a decade ago. While the aesthetics may not be cutting edge, the content is. Bitcointalk is among the oldest crypto discussions forums and thus has accumulated more content over its years than many other similar forums. Many Bitcointalk users are exclusive to Bitcointalk, and many organizations maintain Bitcointalk accounts as well.

No Money for Old Men

Cryptocurrency is not the money of yesteryear. While many options for trading cryptocurrency are analogous to those of traditional currency, cryptocurrency also enables users to make money in ways that are not possible with traditional currencies.

Airdrops

When organizations release a cryptocurrency, they want to generate interest among people that might buy their product. Some organizations release a portion of their cryptocurrency to the general public in exchange for shares on various platforms, including Telegram, Twitter and Bitcointalk. It may seem strange to some that organizations are inclined to distribute cryptocurrency in exchange for likes and shares on social media, but such likes and shares command monetary value. Those that choose to participate in airdrops are usually compensated proportionally to their level of influence on social media. Some airdrops pay a sum proportional to the participant’s number of likes, shares, or followers. Several websites including AirdropAlert.comairdrops.io, and Top ICO List provide lists of upcoming and active airdrops.

According to the “About page on AirdropAlerts.com, “AirdropAlert.com launched June 2017 to create awareness to the crypto community about the existence of airdrops. We believe [the] majority of crypto fanatics are not aware of the concept of airdrops and how to claim it. We started an informational page where you can find data on when and where airdrops take place.”

Airdrops.io is partnered with Airdropalert.com, as well as “Crypto Airdrops,” according to their page titled “Airdrop Alert“. All three brands, AirdropAlert.com, airdrops.io, and Crypto Airdrops, seem to be maintained by the same parent company. All three brands have accounts on Twitter, Telegram and Facebook, and all of these accounts are available on the “Airdrop Alert” page at airdrops.io.

Top ICO List also maintains a resource for the latest airdrops, but they provide news for more than just airdrops. From their “About” page:

Top ICO List is an ICO directory that’s curated by our internal full-time ICO analysts. Our aim is to identify the best potential Initial Coin Offerings (ICO’s) for cryptocurrency investors … Airdrops – Projects that are giving away free cryptocurrency for simple tasks such as joining their telegram group etc. [emphasis in original.]”

Transparency can be a major factor for trust in the crypto sphere. Top ICO List provides some detail about their review/curation process, which list criteria: “Team”, “Product / Vision”, “Token & token economics”, and “Marketing & community”. The “About” page continues, “Based on the case-by-case evaluation we also pay attention to the overall sector growth potential, competition, regional regulatory and other case-relevant issues to ensure that our listings represent the best available ICOs”.

Those interested can stay up-to-date with Top ICO List on FacebookTwitterLinkedInInstagram and Pintrest. Airdrop news is available on a variety of platforms. One additional resource for the latest airdrops is Kyte. Kyte is available for SlackDiscordTelegramiOS, and Android. It is unclear whether the company that publishes Kyte wishes to be known as “Chainlabs” or “Descryptive“.

Steem

Steem could, in many respects, be described as a “third generation blockchain”, because Steem differs significantly from both Bitcoin and Ethereum. Beyond Ethereum, Steem offers what is called, “Smart Media Tokens”. From Steem.io:

“Steem is a blockchain-based rewards platform for publishers to monetize content and grow community. Approx. USD rewards paid since June 2016: $40,154,371 … An SMT is a native digital asset on the Steem blockchain. SMTs can be launched by anyone to help monetize online content and create incentives to encourage desired user behavior. SMTs are like Ethereum’s ERC-20 tokens, but with certain built-in ‘Proof-of-Brain’ properties and a token distribution reward system designed specifically for digital content businesses. … Proof-of-Brain is a type of tokens rewards algorithm that encourages people to create and curate content. It enables tokens to be distributed by “upvote”- and “like”-based algorithms and can be integrated with websites to align incentives between application owners and community members to spur growth.”

The source code for Steem is available on GitHub. Steem also maintains a whitepaper, a sub-reddit, a Twitter feed, a Facebook page, and Steem Chat, which is powered by “Open Source Chat Platform Rocket.Chat.” The flagship platform for Steem is a web app in beta called “Steemit“, and Steem maintains a blog thereon. Steem users can curate content including app directories such as Steem Projects by @noisy or crypto news feeds such as the one by @the4thmusketeer.

Steem users, also know as Steemians, are able to claim a share of each day’s pool of crypto by using Steemit and other apps made with Steem to create and curate content. Steemit and Reddit share many similarities. Both platforms include upvoting, comments, and the ability to post a variety of content. Where Reddit offers mere Reddit Karma, Steemit offers Steem Dollars. Steem Dollars can be traded for US dollars, other national currencies, or other cryptocurrencies on multiple crypto exchanges.

Trading Computer Resources for Crypto

People are able to make money trading cryptocurrency for otherwise idle computer resources including bandwidth, storage, and processing resources. Many different services enable users to trade resources this way. These services are in many ways similar to Airbnband Uber. Where Airbnb and Uber allow users to exchange traditional currency for unused living space and car seats respectively, new blockchain-based services allow users to exchange cryptocurrency for unused hard drive space, bandwidth, or processor operations.

One service that allows users to trade unused hard drive space for crypto is Sia. Sia was originally introduced by David Vorick and Luke Champine in a November 2014 whitepaper. Sia’s website includes an excellent summary: “Sia is a decentralized storage platform secured by blockchain technology. The Sia Storage Platform leverages underutilized hard drive capacity around the world to create a data storage marketplace that is more reliable and lower cost than traditional cloud storage providers.” Sia is currently available for Windows, macOS and Linux, with both GUI and CLI options available for each platform. More information on Sia is available on the “Get Started” and “Support” pages as well as the Sia community wiki.

In addition to Sia, another service which allows users to trade unused hard drive space for cryptocurrency is Filecoin. Introduced via whitepaper in July 2014, Filecoin is a project of Protocol Labs, the same team that maintains IPFS and libp2p. Early adopters can apply to mine Filecoin and to become beta testers here.

Currently conducting an ICO is another blockchain platform called Module. Module works much like Sia and Filecoin, but with emphasis on mobile. From the Module site: “There is a huge amount of surplus storage capacity on smartphones, iOS and Android devices around the world … There are two billion smartphone users worldwide. The typical smartphone storage capacity is 32 GB, half of which is not used. That means there are 32 EB of surplus storage.” Though the Module whitepaper does not include a publication date, the paper includes a road map chronicling key projected events in the timeframe from May 2018 to January 2019.

Another service that will allow users to trade computer resources for cryptocurrency is Storj. From the Storj website: “Storj is building a next-generation decentralized cloud storage network, set to launch in Alpha this fall. By renting unused hard drive and bandwidth capacity around the globe, rather than operating our own data center, we are able to offer more affordable object storage without sacrificing on performance or reliability. With an AWS S3 compatible interface, each file is encrypted, broken up into pieces and then distributed across the network. On/y the data’s owner has the keys to access their encrypted files, providing security and privacy right out-of-the-box.” Storj published v2.0 of its whitepaper in December 2016. The Storj service has not yet launched, but those interested can join a waitlist.

As the Storj homepage mentions, in addition to trading unused storage space, blockchain technology enables users to trade unused bandwidth for crypto. While some of the listed storage platforms may include bandwidth sharing services, Privatrix Network is a bandwidth marketplace powered by a P2P VPN. March 2018 brought release 5.0 of the English version of the Privatrix whitepaper. From the summary of Privatrix: “The Privatix network is a decentralized, fully autonomous p2p VPN network on Blockchain, that allows users to share their Internet broadband with other network members or vice versa – to buy other people’s broadband channels for themselves.” The Alpha release of Privatrix, codenamed Prometheus, is currently available; however, the installation requires the use of a command line, which may dissuade some potential users.

People may also trade bandwidth for crypto by way of a service called “Path“. Unlike Privatrix, which is a blockchain-powered VPN, Path is a blockchain-powered uptime and performance monitoring solution. Users are able to create nodes that ping other users’ sites called “mining agents”; users pay for the monitoring and performance service enabled by these nodes with crypto. Path currently maintains a GitHub page, Telegram group, whitepaper and mining agent available for Chrome.

In addition to unused computer storage and bandwidth, blockchain technology enables users to trade unused computer processing resources for crypto. One platform that enables users to cash in on their idle processors is Golem. Golem is exhaustively explained in a November 2016 whitepaper. As mentioned in the whitepaper, the first (initial) use case of Golem is computer-generated imagery rendering. Currently available in beta for Windows, macOS and Ubuntu, Golem enables users to render graphics for other users in exchange for crypto.

Another service which enables users to trade computer processing for crypto is iExec. iExec’s whitepaper was originally published in September 2016. iExec is powered by Ethereum, and uses concepts of “providers” and “workers”. From the docementation: “As a Provider, you can lend your machine power and monetize it by executing developer applications. Go to the Be a worker section to learn how to deploy your worker software.” iExec runs inside Docker and works with Linux, macOS and Windows.

Making money is not a trivial matter. For many people, making enough money means having enough food to eat. For those with the requisite knowledge, wit and diligence, making money trading cryptocurrencies is only a few clicks away. Making a dollar or two with airdrops, Steem, or another means of trading crypto is a great way to start, and everything great has to start some way.

Cryptocurrencies may have already hit Wall Street and major business publications, but their impact on Main Street and John Doe’s wallet remain to be seen. October 31, 2018, marks the ten-year anniversary of the original publication of the Bitcoin whitepaper, yet in an era during which technology seems to move as quickly as it does, Bitcoin has scarcely any traction at all compared to the likes of Amazon, Facebook or Google.

Though the concept of cryptocurrencies may seem alien to many, the adoption and trading thereof is within reach for anyone who can understand an essay and install an app. Sufficient comprehension of money, the gold standard, fiat currency, stocks, exchanges and blockchain technology will also behoove anyone seeking to make money trading cryptocurrency.

Trading cryptocurrency is as broad a concept as making money in general. When people think of “money”, they generally think of national currencies. National currencies, as their name implies, are currencies issued by national governments. National governments often require that the currencies they issue be accepted throughout the entire nation wherein that currency is issued. National currencies not on a gold standard, in other words, without a direct fixed-rate conversion rate from that national currency to gold or some other valuable commodity, can also be categorized as fiat currencies.

National currencies are traded for one another in foreign exchange markets. Foreign exchange markets are similar to currency exchanges at airports and other places where people can trade one currency for another, but foreign exchange markets typically have lower fees or exchange rates. Exchange rates are an expression of one currency in terms of another. For example, say one US dollar is equal to 0.86 Euros. The exchange rate is then 0.86 Euros/dollar. Exchanges typically charge a fee for each trade that may be calculated at a fixed-rate or based on a percentage of the exchange rate for that trade.

Stock exchanges are similar to foreign exchanges in that they allow customers to trade one type of asset for another. Where foreign exchanges allow customers to trade national currencies, stock exchanges allow customers to trade stocks or shares of companies that are listed on that exchange. In order to be listed on a typical exchange, companies must meet certain requirements and pay fees to the stock exchange. Stock prices are updated according to how much money people are willing to exchange in order to buy and sell them.

Crypto exchanges offer services analogous to foreign currency exchanges and stock exchanges in the realm of cryptocurrencies. Crypto exchanges list a variety of cryptocurrencies which can usually be traded for national currencies or other cryptocurrencies. Like other exchanges, crypto exchanges make money by charging fees. A sufficient understanding of asset trading is essential to making money therein.

Three Generations of Blockchain

Cryptocurrencies are valuable because of an underlying technology called blockchain. With blockchain technology, multiple computers are able to continually track who has how much of any given asset While there are countless different types of cryptocurrency circulating today, blockchain technologies are often defined according to three generations: first, second, and third. The generations approximately started with Bitcoin, Ethereum, and technology similar to yet significantly different from both, respectively. Clearly, the third generation of blockchain technology is less precisely defined than the first and second generations.

First Generation

The Next Web provides an excellent history of bitcoin titled “A brief history of bitcoin – and where it’s going next“. Written by Nathan Jessop and published Mar 29, 2015, the article begins with the initial application for the encryption protocol that would become the first blockchain technology and bitcoin in Japan by Neal Kin, Vladimir Oksman, and Charles Bry in August 2008.

The article continues, detailing bitcoin’s brief yet rich and illustrious history. The first whitepaper for the bitcoin protocol was published in October 2008 under the name “Satoshi Nakamoto”. Neal Kin, Vladimir Oksman, and Charles Bry denied any connection to Nakamoto. The domain bitcoin.org, which is still operating at the time of this writing, was purchased anonymously through anonymouspeech.com. (Years later, anonymousspeech.com recommends bitcoin for security ahead of its Swiss bank accounts, and even provides a 5% discount to customers who pay with bitcoin.)

In January 2009, the first block of the bitcoin blockchain was launched, which allowed computers running certain software to “mine” the new bitcoin blocks. Also in January 2009, the first bitcoin transaction took place between Nakamoto and Hal Finney. In October of 2009, the first value of bitcoin in terms of dollars was established by the New Liberty Standard at 1 USD to 1,309 BTC. Their exchange rate was calculated based on the cost of the electricity required to run computers with bitcoin mining and transaction software.

The next year, in February 2010, dwdollar was established as the world’s premier bitcoin market. It has since ceased operations. A few months later, in May 2010, a Floridian programmer named Laslo Hanyecz sent 10,000 BTC to England where someone returned him a sum of money equal to about twenty-five dollars at the time. Hanyecz subsequently spent the money on a pizza from Papa John’s.

Two thousand ten was also the year of bitcoin’s first hack. In August 2010, hackers discovered a vulnerability which led to the generation of 184 billion Bitcoins. Of course, the value of bitcoin plummeted as word of the vulnerability spread. Some exchanges had rates as high as 1 USD to 1 bitcoin before the crash.

More vulnerabilities in the protocol were discovered in September 2010. According to TNW, in October 2010 “an inter-governmental group published a report on money laundering using new payment methods. Bitcoin, it suggested could help people finance terrorist groups.” The next month, the market cap for bitcoin reach one million dollars, which led to a resurgence in value to a less-than-best 1 USD to 2 BTC.

Utilizing bitcoin, Pretty Good Privacy, and Tor, the first anonymous online drug exchange, the Silk Road, was established in January 2011. The now-defunct site made use of a toolset a la eBay and allowed buyers to rate and review sellers and to view those of other buyers.

About one month later, in February 2011, Bitcoin reached parity with the US dollar, and in June 2011, bitcoin reached a new all-time high of thirty-one dollars to one bitcoin. The market cap of bitcoin at the time was $206 million. It is worth noting that someone who would have purchased bitcoins at the initial listed value of 1 USD to 1,309 BTC could have made a 4,057,900% return on their investment at this time.

Bitcoin remained relatively stable until June 2011, when the first major bitcoin theft occurred. From TNW: “Bitcoin Forum founder allinvain reported having 25,000 BTC taken from his digital wallet, which had an equivalent value of $375,000. In the same month, a major breach of security saw the value of the currency go from $17.51 to $0.01 per Bitcoin.” Note that TNW reports the date of this theft as June 2013, and Bitcointalk.org reports this theft as having taken place in June 2011.

Bitcoin and the first generation blockchain reached new heights in 2013, and government agencies began to take notice. In March 2013, the US Financial Crimes Enforcement Network issued one of the first government regulations regarding cryptocurrency and bitcoins when it released its guidance report for persons administering, exchanging or using virtual currency. That month, the Bitcoin market cap reached $1,000,000,000.

Also in 2013, Bitcoin was legally ruled to be a security and thus subject to regulation by the United States government with a ruling from Magistrate Judge Amos Mazzant of the Eastern District of Texas. The US Securities and Exchange Commission accused Trendon Shavers of running a Bitcoin Ponzi scheme in 2011 and 2012. Shavers operated a business under the name “Bitcoin Savings & Trust” which promised clients a 7% return on their Bitcoin investments. From Forbes:

“It is clear that Bitcoin can be used as money,” wrote Judge Mazzant in a ruling on Tuesday. “It can be used to purchase goods or services, and as Shavers stated, used to pay for individual living expenses.”

“The only limitation of Bitcoin is that it is limited to those places that accept it as currency. However, it can also be exchanged for conventional currencies, such as the U.S. dollar, Euro, Yen, and Yuan,” wrote Mazzant. “Therefore, Bitcoin is a currency or form of money, and investors wishing to invest in BTCST provided an investment of money.”

Around three months later, in November 2013, the US Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs conducted a hearing which they called “Beyond Silk Road: Potential Risks, Threats, and Promises of Virtual Currencies”. A video of the hearing, as well as written witness testimonies, are available from senate.gov. The price of one Bitcoin reached $700 that month.

Secord Generation

The beginning of the second generation of blockchain technology corresponds to the development of Ethereum in 2013. Ethereum was conceived in the mind of Vitalik Buterin. Buterin, who co-founded Bitcoin Magazine in September 2011, wrote the Ethereum white paper in November 2013.

The Ethereum white paper is an excellent reference for people interested in learning more about cryptocurrencies. The paper is somewhat technical, but that should not turn potential readers away. The concepts outlined in the paper, while abstract, are not too difficult for those willing to invest the time in learning about the blockchain. An ability to learn and understand underlying blockchain technology is essential to eventually earning profits with cryptocurrencies.

An even more technical paper on Ethereum is available. The paper, titled, “Ethereum: A Secure Decentralised Generalised Transaction Ledger” was written by Dr. Gavin Wood, and is more commonly known as the “Ethereum yellow paper”. While this paper may be too technical for many readers, the importance of understanding blockchain, or any other thing, before becoming involved with it cannot be overstated.

Ethereum expands upon Bitcoin by adding computer code to each block in the blockchain. The language used to write this code is of a stamp known as “Turing-complete”. The term derives its name from Alan Turing, the Englishman who invented the things we now call computers as mere abstract concepts before the existence of practical means to construct such machines. Languages or codes that are Turing-complete can be used to describe any computable mathematical function. Ethereum, as well as some of its advantages compared to Bitcoin, are well-summarized by Larry Loeb and Security Intelligence,

“Ethereum has at its core a way to apply arbitrary rules for ownership, transaction formats and state transition functions — taking both the state of a blockchain and a transaction for that chain and then outputting a new state as its result. It does this by way of an internal scripting language that is aware of a system’s state while being Turing-complete, which means it can encode any computation that may be performed by the system.”

Software developers can create applications on top of the Ethereum blockchain because information stored within the Ethereum blockchain includes Turing-complete code. The Ethereum white paper lists several examples of applications that can be created with this new technology including token systems, financial derivatives and stable-value currencies, identity and reputation systems, decentralized file storage, decentralized autonomous organizations, savings wallets, an insurance system, a decentralized data feed, smart multi-signature escrow, cloud computing, peer-to-peer gambling, prediction markets, and on-chain decentralized marketplaces.

Related to but not explicitly included in the Ethereum white paper is the Internet of Things, also known as the “I-o-T”. Security Intelligence reported in December 2015,

“It’s the transactions involved in the Internet of Things (IoT) ecosystem where the system will shine: Because one can trigger computation or other code action with an Ethereum account message, an IoT device can be controlled if it is connected to an Ethereum-based network.”

Ethereum made a big splash in the world of cryptocurrency with its crowdsourced funding campaign of July 2014. “Raising more than $18m, it was then the most successful crowdsale to date at the time,” according to CoinDesk. Crowdsourced funding campaigns for cryptocurrencies have since flourished to the extent that such campaigns are now referred to as “initial coin offerings” or “ICO’s”.

Third Generation

As previously mentioned, the third generation of blockchain technology is more difficult to define than the previous two generations. Due to Ethereum including an entire Turing-complete code set on its blockchain, many blockchain technologies that some might consider third generation are technologies and applications built on top of the Ethereum blockchain.

Price and Value

Like everything else in a free-market economy, the price or the valuation of cryptocurrencies is defined by how much people are willing to pay. The price is based on a mutually understood and agreed upon transaction. How much a party values something is assumed to correlate to a quantifiable amount of a liquid or mutually valuable asset.

Buy Low, Sell High

“Buy low, and sell high,” is a mantra among asset traders. The general process for making money trading assets: buy an asset at a relatively low price, wait for the price of that asset to increase, then sell the asset at a relatively high price. In theory, this simple strategy is fool-proof; however, in practice there are externalities, and there exists no perfect way to predict how price will vary over time.

Crypto and Stocks

Cryptocurrencies and corporate stocks share many common attributes. Both have monetary value, can be bought or sold, and are usually listed on one or more competing exchanges. Stocks, unlike cryptocurrencies, are dependent on a central authority. In the case of stocks, this central authority is often a government agency as a company’s articles of incorporationdefine the number of shares in that company. This dependence on a central authority is likely a significant factor in peoples’ enthusiasm towards crypto and blockchain.

IPO’s and ICO’s

When companies first issue stocks or become listed on a major stock exchange, they conduct what is called an IPO or initial public offering. The company sells a certain number of stocks that may or may not be listed on an exchange, which it then sells at a set price at the time of its IPO. As soon as the IPO starts, the price is influenced by how much people are willing to pay for it in terms of market value.

When releasing a cryptocurrency, many organizations will conduct what is called an ICO or initial coin offering. The similarity in nomenclature between IPO’s and ICO’s is not accidental; however, the two processes are not entirely analogous. While IPO’s often take place when a stock is first listed on an exchange, ICO’s often take place before a crypto is listed on an exchange. Because of this key difference, a certain portion of the total quantity of a cryptocurrency is generally sold at a fixed price. Once a crypto becomes listed on an exchange, the price of that crypto is determined by market forces.

Technology and the Information Age

Cryptocurrencies are essentially products of the Information Age. As the Digital Revolution sweeps the world, more and more information is stored and shared via computers and the Internet. Cryptocurrencies are the application of digital technology to currency. Digital technology evolves rapidly, as is demonstrable by the evolution of cell phones from briefcase-sized mobile connection stations to pocket-sized personal computers. Crypto and blockchain technology has and will continue to change and grow during the course of its own technical evolution.

Not all newer technologies are more valuable than older technologies. Outside of crypto, many technologies are used to reduce costs. For example, particle board is often used as a cheaper alternative to plywood. Today, both particleboard and plywood are used as building materials. Like building materials, it is unlikely that the invention of new crypto and blockchain technologies will outright replace existing technologies; instead, new technologies will likely be used as an alternative or as a supplement to existing technologies. In other words, Bitcoin’s being the oldest cryptocurrency should not be seen as an indication of its susceptibility to technical replacement.

Get in Early

One important factor that will ultimately determine how much money one is able to make trading crypto is the relative age of a given asset. It is worth repeating that the earliest adopters of Bitcoin earned a 4,057,900% return on their investment when Bitcoin sold for just $31 per unit. When setting up an IPO or an ICO, issuing entities attempt to price their stocks in such a way that the market will drive the price up. These entities want the price of their asset to move upward, so they set the initial price accordingly.

Many traders and investors have made money by purchasing assets at their initial value, then selling those assets days or even hours afterward. Getting involved in an asset early can also establish credibility among others who own that asset or are interested in purchasing that asset.

The number of cryptocurrencies that have failed is too high to enumerate. Cryptocurrencies, in general, are higher-risk investment assets than stocks. Companies typically do not fail immediately following their IPO; however, many ICO’s have turned out to be veritable scams. Such fraudulent ICO’s are relatively easy to stage with the proper technical knowledge. The US SEC create a fake cryptocurrency called HoweyCoins, complete with its own white paper, to illustrate just how easy it can be to set up these scams. Clicking on the site’s “About” page takes users to the SEC website, which details valuable information on how to spot scams such as HoweyCoins.

Keep Up-to-Date

Asset trading in the Information Age requires one to constantly track and follow what is going on in the world in any and every way that could possibly relate to trading those assets. Fortunately for crypto traders, many means of keeping track of such information are simple and cost-effective. A great deal of information regarding cryptocurrencies exists on TwitterTelegramreddit and Bitcointalk.

Twitter is something like a social media site combined with an RSS feed. Just like RSS, Twitter is organized by different feeds. For the most part, each different cryptocurrency has its own Twitter feed. Ethereum has its own Twitter feed, for example. It is common for important persons in the cryptocurrency space to have their own Twitter feeds as well. Several companies offer compilations and analyses of crypto and blockchain news on Twitter including CoinDeskCointelegraph, and Bitcoinist.

Telegram is a messaging platform that has become a popular forum for crypto discussion. Telegram supports both groups and channels. Groups are similar to those on other chat and messaging platforms. Channels on Telegram are more like Twitter or RSS feeds. The channel admin can post content, and anyone subscribed to that channel can view that content; however, subscribers who are not administrators are not permitted to post to channels. Some cryptocurrencies, such as Endor have both a Telegram group and a Telegram channel.

Reddit is a popular forum for a variety of topics, and it is the platform of choice for some to discuss crypto. The site is organized into topic pages called subreddits. Many cryptocurrencies have their own dedicated subreddits. Users post links to photos, articles, videos, or any other type of online content to a particular subreddit. Reddit users (also known as Redditors) are able to vote on which content they like, comment on content, and comment on other comments.

Bitcointalk is, for lack of a better term, old-school. Based on the open-source forum software Simple Machines, Bitcointalk is reminiscent of forums from a decade ago. While the aesthetics may not be cutting edge, the content is. Bitcointalk is among the oldest crypto discussions forums and thus has accumulated more content over its years than many other similar forums. Many Bitcointalk users are exclusive to Bitcointalk, and many organizations maintain Bitcointalk accounts as well.

No Money for Old Men

Cryptocurrency is not the money of yesteryear. While many options for trading cryptocurrency are analogous to those of traditional currency, cryptocurrency also enables users to make money in ways that are not possible with traditional currencies.

Airdrops

When organizations release a cryptocurrency, they want to generate interest among people that might buy their product. Some organizations release a portion of their cryptocurrency to the general public in exchange for shares on various platforms, including Telegram, Twitter and Bitcointalk. It may seem strange to some that organizations are inclined to distribute cryptocurrency in exchange for likes and shares on social media, but such likes and shares command monetary value. Those that choose to participate in airdrops are usually compensated proportionally to their level of influence on social media. Some airdrops pay a sum proportional to the participant’s number of likes, shares, or followers. Several websites including AirdropAlert.comairdrops.io, and Top ICO List provide lists of upcoming and active airdrops.

According to the “About page on AirdropAlerts.com, “AirdropAlert.com launched June 2017 to create awareness to the crypto community about the existence of airdrops. We believe [the] majority of crypto fanatics are not aware of the concept of airdrops and how to claim it. We started an informational page where you can find data on when and where airdrops take place.”

Airdrops.io is partnered with Airdropalert.com, as well as “Crypto Airdrops,” according to their page titled “Airdrop Alert“. All three brands, AirdropAlert.com, airdrops.io, and Crypto Airdrops, seem to be maintained by the same parent company. All three brands have accounts on Twitter, Telegram and Facebook, and all of these accounts are available on the “Airdrop Alert” page at airdrops.io.

Top ICO List also maintains a resource for the latest airdrops, but they provide news for more than just airdrops. From their “About” page:

Top ICO List is an ICO directory that’s curated by our internal full-time ICO analysts. Our aim is to identify the best potential Initial Coin Offerings (ICO’s) for cryptocurrency investors … Airdrops – Projects that are giving away free cryptocurrency for simple tasks such as joining their telegram group etc. [emphasis in original.]”

Transparency can be a major factor for trust in the crypto sphere. Top ICO List provides some detail about their review/curation process, which list criteria: “Team”, “Product / Vision”, “Token & token economics”, and “Marketing & community”. The “About” page continues, “Based on the case-by-case evaluation we also pay attention to the overall sector growth potential, competition, regional regulatory and other case-relevant issues to ensure that our listings represent the best available ICOs”.

Those interested can stay up-to-date with Top ICO List on FacebookTwitterLinkedInInstagram and Pintrest. Airdrop news is available on a variety of platforms. One additional resource for the latest airdrops is Kyte. Kyte is available for SlackDiscordTelegramiOS, and Android. It is unclear whether the company that publishes Kyte wishes to be known as “Chainlabs” or “Descryptive“.

Steem

Steem could, in many respects, be described as a “third generation blockchain”, because Steem differs significantly from both Bitcoin and Ethereum. Beyond Ethereum, Steem offers what is called, “Smart Media Tokens”. From Steem.io:

“Steem is a blockchain-based rewards platform for publishers to monetize content and grow community. Approx. USD rewards paid since June 2016: $40,154,371 … An SMT is a native digital asset on the Steem blockchain. SMTs can be launched by anyone to help monetize online content and create incentives to encourage desired user behavior. SMTs are like Ethereum’s ERC-20 tokens, but with certain built-in ‘Proof-of-Brain’ properties and a token distribution reward system designed specifically for digital content businesses. … Proof-of-Brain is a type of tokens rewards algorithm that encourages people to create and curate content. It enables tokens to be distributed by “upvote”- and “like”-based algorithms and can be integrated with websites to align incentives between application owners and community members to spur growth.”

The source code for Steem is available on GitHub. Steem also maintains a whitepaper, a sub-reddit, a Twitter feed, a Facebook page, and Steem Chat, which is powered by “Open Source Chat Platform Rocket.Chat.” The flagship platform for Steem is a web app in beta called “Steemit“, and Steem maintains a blog thereon. Steem users can curate content including app directories such as Steem Projects by @noisy or crypto news feeds such as the one by @the4thmusketeer.

Steem users, also know as Steemians, are able to claim a share of each day’s pool of crypto by using Steemit and other apps made with Steem to create and curate content. Steemit and Reddit share many similarities. Both platforms include upvoting, comments, and the ability to post a variety of content. Where Reddit offers mere Reddit Karma, Steemit offers Steem Dollars. Steem Dollars can be traded for US dollars, other national currencies, or other cryptocurrencies on multiple crypto exchanges.

Trading Computer Resources for Crypto

People are able to make money trading cryptocurrency for otherwise idle computer resources including bandwidth, storage, and processing resources. Many different services enable users to trade resources this way. These services are in many ways similar to Airbnband Uber. Where Airbnb and Uber allow users to exchange traditional currency for unused living space and car seats respectively, new blockchain-based services allow users to exchange cryptocurrency for unused hard drive space, bandwidth, or processor operations.

One service that allows users to trade unused hard drive space for crypto is Sia. Sia was originally introduced by David Vorick and Luke Champine in a November 2014 whitepaper. Sia’s website includes an excellent summary: “Sia is a decentralized storage platform secured by blockchain technology. The Sia Storage Platform leverages underutilized hard drive capacity around the world to create a data storage marketplace that is more reliable and lower cost than traditional cloud storage providers.” Sia is currently available for Windows, macOS and Linux, with both GUI and CLI options available for each platform. More information on Sia is available on the “Get Started” and “Support” pages as well as the Sia community wiki.

In addition to Sia, another service which allows users to trade unused hard drive space for cryptocurrency is Filecoin. Introduced via whitepaper in July 2014, Filecoin is a project of Protocol Labs, the same team that maintains IPFS and libp2p. Early adopters can apply to mine Filecoin and to become beta testers here.

Currently conducting an ICO is another blockchain platform called Module. Module works much like Sia and Filecoin, but with emphasis on mobile. From the Module site: “There is a huge amount of surplus storage capacity on smartphones, iOS and Android devices around the world … There are two billion smartphone users worldwide. The typical smartphone storage capacity is 32 GB, half of which is not used. That means there are 32 EB of surplus storage.” Though the Module whitepaper does not include a publication date, the paper includes a road map chronicling key projected events in the timeframe from May 2018 to January 2019.

Another service that will allow users to trade computer resources for cryptocurrency is Storj. From the Storj website: “Storj is building a next-generation decentralized cloud storage network, set to launch in Alpha this fall. By renting unused hard drive and bandwidth capacity around the globe, rather than operating our own data center, we are able to offer more affordable object storage without sacrificing on performance or reliability. With an AWS S3 compatible interface, each file is encrypted, broken up into pieces and then distributed across the network. On/y the data’s owner has the keys to access their encrypted files, providing security and privacy right out-of-the-box.” Storj published v2.0 of its whitepaper in December 2016. The Storj service has not yet launched, but those interested can join a waitlist.

As the Storj homepage mentions, in addition to trading unused storage space, blockchain technology enables users to trade unused bandwidth for crypto. While some of the listed storage platforms may include bandwidth sharing services, Privatrix Network is a bandwidth marketplace powered by a P2P VPN. March 2018 brought release 5.0 of the English version of the Privatrix whitepaper. From the summary of Privatrix: “The Privatix network is a decentralized, fully autonomous p2p VPN network on Blockchain, that allows users to share their Internet broadband with other network members or vice versa – to buy other people’s broadband channels for themselves.” The Alpha release of Privatrix, codenamed Prometheus, is currently available; however, the installation requires the use of a command line, which may dissuade some potential users.

People may also trade bandwidth for crypto by way of a service called “Path“. Unlike Privatrix, which is a blockchain-powered VPN, Path is a blockchain-powered uptime and performance monitoring solution. Users are able to create nodes that ping other users’ sites called “mining agents”; users pay for the monitoring and performance service enabled by these nodes with crypto. Path currently maintains a GitHub page, Telegram group, whitepaper and mining agent available for Chrome.

In addition to unused computer storage and bandwidth, blockchain technology enables users to trade unused computer processing resources for crypto. One platform that enables users to cash in on their idle processors is Golem. Golem is exhaustively explained in a November 2016 whitepaper. As mentioned in the whitepaper, the first (initial) use case of Golem is computer-generated imagery rendering. Currently available in beta for Windows, macOS and Ubuntu, Golem enables users to render graphics for other users in exchange for crypto.

Another service which enables users to trade computer processing for crypto is iExec. iExec’s whitepaper was originally published in September 2016. iExec is powered by Ethereum, and uses concepts of “providers” and “workers”. From the docementation: “As a Provider, you can lend your machine power and monetize it by executing developer applications. Go to the Be a worker section to learn how to deploy your worker software.” iExec runs inside Docker and works with Linux, macOS and Windows.

Making money is not a trivial matter. For many people, making enough money means having enough food to eat. For those with the requisite knowledge, wit and diligence, making money trading cryptocurrencies is only a few clicks away. Making a dollar or two with airdrops, Steem, or another means of trading crypto is a great way to start, and everything great has to start some way.