- Use Bitcoin
- Use a Full Node
- Keeping Up w/ Technology
- Meet-ups & Conferences
- Set them up
Bitcoin is a new and radical disruptive technology. It is redefining money and has us questioning; what is money?
If you want to help educate others, even just the basics, you need to learn it yourself. The space is always changing too, so try to keep up! But don't sweat it too much, people always get things wrong in this space and no one knows everything. Just make sure you learn from your mistakes as with anything and try not to take things personally.
When you are confident in your own basic knowledge start educating family, friends, advocates, the curious, the skeptics, the neutral and the critical about the benefits and strengths of Bitcoin. Let them know what makes Bitcoin special, what differentiates it from anything else that exists and what differentiates Bitcoin from other cryptocurrencies.
Not good at explaining? Not a coder? No sweat - you can help Bitcoin by just simply using it.
Store some wealth in bitcoin long term, it is a savings technology after all.
You can spend a little bit once in a while too! Did you know places Microsoft, NewEgg, Expedia and many online shops accept Bitcoin?
Using a Bitcoin full node to transact is the equivalent of being your own self-soverign bank.
Validates all the rules of Bitcoin - A full node ensures you are actually receiving the bitcoin you think you are. Not running a full node means you are outsourcing the truth from an external source. It's better to use the source of truth directly.
Increases privacy - If you don't use a full node your transactions need to be broadcasted by a third party meaning they could track transactions. A full node broadcasts transactions directly to the Bitcoin network.
It helps the network - Running a full node increases network decentralization which increases the security of the network as a whole. In addition, if you open port 8333, others will be able to download blockchain data from you.
Your voice - In the event of a hard fork, running a full node is the only sure way to know which network consensus rules you are following.
May take +1 days to sync the blockchain from scratch depending on your hardware specs.
Wallet's send function isn't fully functional until the blockchain is fully synced.
Must run online 24/7 to continuously sync new blockchain data or it will need to catch up once back online.
The blockchain uses +321 GB of hard drive space (as of Jun 19/2020) and grows roughly every 10 minutes.
Note: You can enable pruned mode to reduce the disk space required to as little as 2 GB.
- +321 GB (as of Jun 19/2020) of hard drive space for the standard full node or +10 GB for a pruned node.
- 2 GB of RAM or more.
- Internet plan that can accommodate the initial +321 GB (as of Jun19/2020) download of the entire blockchain and the +20 GB sync per month.
Note: If you open port 8333 your internet plan must accomodate the upload bandwidth used by others downloading data from your full node.
Let's go over the 3 ways you can utilize a full node:
Download the bitcoin core software and use the built in wallet to transact.
Use a wallet that supports connecting your full node to the wallet. You'll need to have Bitcoin Core installed and synced.
Use a wallet that auto-connects to someone else's node. This is convenient but the least desirable as it requires more trust in the company.
Running a full node is easy and can be done on any computer:
- Download and install the Bitcoin Core software.
Note: You can download a full node on Android here.
- Open the program and let it sync the blockchain
Note: It may take a few hours up to over a day to sync and the wallet isn't usable until it's fully synced.
Optional: Port forward 8333 on your firewall if you want to help update other full nodes on the network. (Requires internet plan with high upload cap)
This section is directed towards everyone.
Please do your due diligence and follow the trends and technological advancements in the Bitcoin space. We all benefit from adopting the latest and greatest tecnologies aimed at optimizing the network.
Segregated Witness (SegWit) was introduced not too long ago to help securely scale Bitcoin, reduce transaction fees, enable more innovation and fix a long standing malleability bug among other things.
All wallets should have SegWit integrated by now. If not, you should be questioning that wallet/service.
You use SegWit by sending and receiving from a SegWit Bitcoin address. You can tell if an address is SegWit by checking if the address begins with a "3" (P2SH) or a "bc1" (Bech-32).
bc1qnc69v3hfznag9zdrwgutusp0f95js6c38ckvwj = Native SegWit / bech32 (Best)
35JZ72myPm2HUNLHq2ozA6Z2dvbmSCFV3W = SegWit / P2SH (Better)
1FnN243Tu3oNaZazwTNpgvvh6Hi8jpjK2U = Legacy / P2PKH
For Everyday Users
Use wallets and services that have SegWit integrated. By now, all wallets/services should have SegWit integrated. If not, you may need to question the service's integrity.
Any company that uses Bitcoin should have SegWit integrated by now, even if it's something as small as accepting donations. Companies should get their developer(s) to work on getting SegWit integrated.
Transaction batching became more relevant when the Bitcoin mempool began getting bloated which raised the transaction fees during the 2017 bull run.
Some exchanges and companies that had high transaction traffic were unintentionally spamming the network with thousands and thousands of legitimate transactions in a very inefficient manner.
Transaction batching increases efficiency by combining many transactions into a single transaction to pay out multiple users thus greatly reducing the transaction efficiency of Bitcoin companies. Batching optimizes the network, reduces the transaction fess for everyone and significantly reduces the accumulated transaction fees of large companies.
Example: An exchange needs to pay out 7 users that want to withdraw their bitcoin. Instead of creating 7 separate transactions with 1 output each, the exchange creates 1 transaction with 7 outputs for the 7 users needing to be paid out.
Companies need to get their developer(s) to setup transaction batching for them.
The Lightning Network is a second layer technology built on-top of the Bitcoin protocol to help scale for high volume smaller valued transactions while anchoring to Bitcoin's world class security. Learn more about Lightning.
For Everyday Users
Users that spend in smaller values or on a frequent basis should be using a Lightning integrated wallet. Get a lightning wallet here.
Companies should be starting to integrate lightning now or have near term plans for integration. Shopping sites should especially have lightning integrated right now. See lightning merchant processors here.
- Bitcoin, Lightning, and Streaming Money (Video)
- SF Bitcoin Devs Seminar: Scaling Bitcoin to Billions of Transactions Per Day (Video)
- Bitcoin Q&A: Lightning Network scaling (Video)
- Bitcoin Q&A: Lightning Network game theory (Video)
- Bitcoin Adoption Is Getting A Massive Lightning Network Boost (Article)
There can never be enough competent developers in this space - in fact, the space could use a lot more! Get employed by a Bitcoin company, volunteer code to open source Bitcoin projects or contribute code to protocol level development.
Bitcoin development is the Mount Everest of the "crypto" ecosystem. It is the most challenging but the most rewarding. Bitcoin attracts the best developers from all over the globe.
- Bitcoin White Paper
- Bitcoin GitHub
- Subscribe to Bitcoin Dev Mailing List
- Bitcoin IRC Dev Channels
- Mooniversity (Bitcoin Coding Course)
- Bitcointalk.org Development & Technical
- Programming Bitcoin: Learn How to Program Bitcoin from Scratch
- Mastering Bitcoin: Programming the Open Blockchain
- Google: "Learn programming online"
Bitcoin Technical Books
Don't know how to code? Learn at:
Bitcoin miners race to be the first to solve a complex mathematical puzzle. If they win, they get to add a transaction block to the Bitcoin blockchain and get paid bitcoin.
Bitcoin mining requires expensive hardware, high capital and a lot of planning to be profitable.
Join forums and social media platforms to discuss and educate Bitcoin to the uneducated.
Meet people face to face to discuss Bitcoin and build connections! Make some friends with like-minded people along the way too!
Have a friend or family member that wants to get some bitcoin but needs help? Hook them up!
Set them up with a wallet, explain what a wallet backup is and how to secure it. You can show them where to buy bitcoin or even send them some yourself!
"GiveBitcoin" is designed to educate new users and timelock their bitcoin so they can educate themselves before making newbie mistakes like selling because of price volatility.
Financial privacy is extremly important. Did you know that every Bitcoin transactions can be tracked on the blockchain? More coin mixing increases the fungibility of the Bitcoin network for everyone.
Some Bitcoin wallets allow you to change the settings to run it over the TOR network for increased privacy. Some wallets might even run over TOR automatically!
Use Bitcoin via satellite anywhere in the world without an internet connection and without consuming internet bandwidth.
- Blockstream Satellite Info Page
- Buy Blockstream Satellite Kits
- Build Your Own Bitcoin Satellite Node Guide
- Completely Offline Bitcoin Transactions
Use Bitcoin on your phone through a mesh network of other goTenna users. The larger the mesh network, the stronger your signal will be.
Did you know that your ISP can track everything you do online? Other users online can collect information about you as well, such as your location.
With a VPN, you increase your web browsing privacy and are able to view content from other countries. To further increase privacy, register to a VPN service using a dummy account and pay in Bitcoin.
You can download and use TOR web browser for free. It's more privacy oriented than a VPN but will degrade your user experience for everyday web browsing. Some wallets use the TOR network or have an option to enable TOR which doesn't degrade user experience.