Marc Andreessen

Photo Credit: Fortune Brainstorm TECH 2012 by Kevin Maloney/Fortune Brainstorm Tech is licensed under CC BY-ND 2.0

Like the Internet, Bitcoin is a platform. It’s less what can it do today, more what can it do in the future. There are thousands and thousands of things that it might make possible in the future. - Marc Andreessen, creator of the first user-friendly web browser

Bitcoin is digital cash. Bitcoin will amaze everyone who gives it a chance.

When you think of bitcoin, you probably have some preconceived notions. You’ve probably read some bitcoin articles. Unfortunately bitcoin is a complex, brand-new technology and most articles contain factual errors. This site exists to explain bitcoin in plain English.

Before explaining bitcoin I want to put your mind in the right state. Please do your best to clear out what you’ve heard about bitcoin and imagine being one of the first people Alexander Graham Bell showed the phone to.

Imagine seeing this clunky device with a wire running from his kitchen to his bedroom and being told that everyone around the world would be able to talk to each other using it. What an effort it would take to build wires connecting everyone’s home, what about crossing the oceans? Unimaginable for many people right?

After seeing his device imagine being told someday we’d have fax machines, cell phones, and the Internet all using his phone technology. You would probably think he was crazy! But we know he was visionary.

Treat bitcoin the same way instead of thinking it can’t, think what if. Like the phone network the bitcoin network needs some build out before it is obviously superior to all the payment mechanisms and forms of money we are used to. Hundreds of thousands of pioneers are working to build that infrastructure, but right now, it takes some imagination to envision how much digital currencies are going to change the world.

Here are seven reasons bitcoin is the best form of money:

  1. Fast - Bitcoin moves anywhere in the world as fast as email.

  2. Low-Cost - Bitcoin transactions cost almost nothing. Using a free Coinbase web-wallet, transactions are actually FREE. Companies around the world spend tens of billions to process transactions and individuals spend $50 billion to remit money every year. This is a big deal!

  3. Total control - bitcoin empowers you. If you want to send bitcoins to a child in Africa, donate to a charity, or your friend across the street, no one can stop you. There is no bank, politician, credit card processor, or other group to stop you. You have complete control over your bitcoins.

  4. Counterfeit-proof - Bitcoin is the safest way to get paid. Bitcoins cannot be counterfeit and payments cannot be reversed. Many criminals will be out of a job when bitcoin becomes mainstream.

  5. Programmable - In the same way email enables computers to easily communicate with people, bitcoin enables computers to pay or receive money from people. It is hard to overstate how much of a game-changer this is. In the way the phone lines enabled the Internet and the fax, programmable money will enable unimaginably innovation.

  6. Rare - There will only be 21 million bitcoins ever. Luckily bitcoins are very divisible. Everyone can have some, but not a lot.

  7. Not a Bureaucratic Tool - Bitcoin’s creators designed it as a safe way for people to store wealth. It is a deflationary currency instead of the inflationary currencies most people are used to. Additional bitcoins cannot be created to fund wars, pay political allies, or erode consumer savings.

Why would I want some bitcoin?

Why wouldn’t I want to own bitcoins?

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