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Bitcoin for Dummies: Transactions, anonymity, and coin production

Wednesday, 19 March 2014 - 10:41pm IST | Place: Mumbai | Agency: dna Shadow Editorial Board

Bitcoin can be somewhat of a difficult concept for a layman to understand. Here's an analogy to understand Bitcoin transactions, anonymity and coin production.
Let's think of it like this...
There’s a space that anyone can access. The space has security cameras that anyone can view, and every second of recorded footage is available online forever. This is the Bitcoin Blockchain
The space is filled with indestructible wallets. Everyone can see which coins are in which wallet. These wallets can never leave the space. This is the wallet every Bitcoiner uses
Each person has a key that can open their wallet. Let’s say I want to buy a pair of alpaca socks, and you want to sell them. This is what keeps Bitcoin secure.
First, you tell me which wallet is yours. Then, I walk into the space with a ski mask on. Anyone in the world can see me on the security cameras, but not my face. This is Bitcoin's anonymity
Next, I unlock my wallet, take some coins out, then put them into your locked wallet. I leave the space. This is how Bitcoin Transfers take place.
Now, everyone in the world knows that your wallet has coins that were previously in my wallet. This is the case with every transaction, so everyone knows the history of every coin. This is the transaction history of the Blockchain.
There’s a robot in the space that gives complex math problems to solve. The first ones to solve it get a fixed number of coins. When it first started, there weren’t many wallets in the space since nobody knew about it. Back then, it was easy . Today, the problems are much harder and there are millions of wallets in the space, so your odds aren’t the best. This is Bitcoin Mining

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