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1. Beginner Course

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  1. 1. What are these cryptocurrencies?
  2. 2. Bitcoin - the story of a technological revolution
  3. 3. Satoshi Nakamoto, who is the creator of Bitcoin?
  4. 4. Vitaly Buterin – the creator of Ethereum
  5. 5. What is Blockchain, and how does it work?
  6. 6. What is an NFT token?
  7. 7. What is money?
  8. 8. Cryptocurrencies vs fiat money, which will win?
  9. 9. What is DeFi (Decentralized Finance)?
  10. 10. DeFi: opportunities, advantages and disadvantages of decentralized finance
  11. 11. What is an altcoin?
  12. 12. Stablecoins - What are they?
  13. 13. Cryptocurrency wallet - what is it?
  14. 14. Why do we talk about bull and bear markets?
  15. 15. Security in the crypto market - what rules are worth following?
  16. 16. What is the seed phrase in cryptocurrencies?
  17. 17. Dogecoin and memecoin - what are they?
  18. 18. What is a Ponzi scheme?
  19. 19. What is a Soft and Hard Fork?
  20. 20. Blockchain - examples of use
  21. 21. Is blockchain safe?
  22. 22. Smart Contracts - what are they?
  23. 23. What is Ethereum? 
  24. 24. Liquidity in the cryptocurrency market
  25. 25. What is cryptocurrency mining?
  26. 26. What is the mining difficulty?
  27. 27. Inflation and its effects on financial markets
  28. 28. What is compound interest, and how does it work?
  29. 29. Cryptocurrency wallet diversification
  30. 30. Blockchain and NFT games - how to make money on them?
  31. 31. Decentralized Apps – what are they?
  32. 32. What is Proof of Work (PoW) and what is Proof of Stake (PoS)?
  33. 33. What is Proof of Burn (PoB)?
  34. 34. What is the Proof of Authority (PoA) consensus mechanism?
  35. 35. What Are Privacy Coins and Are They Legal?
  36. 36. What is CBDC - central bank digital money?
  37. 37. What is Cryptocurrency Airdrop all about?
  38. 38. What are the types of blockchain networks?
  39. 39. Key differences between ICO, IEO and STO
  40. 40. What is IoT - the Internet of Things?
  41. 41. What is the difference between Circulating Supply and Total Supply?
  42. 42. Everything you need to know about gas fees in Ethereum!
  43. 43. The most important cryptocurrency acronyms/slang you need to know!
  44. 44. Halving Bitcoin - what is it, and how does it affect the price?
  45. 45. What is the Fear and Greed index for cryptocurrencies?
  46. 46. APR versus APY: what is the difference?
  47. 47. Snapshot from the world of cryptocurrencies - what is it?
  48. 48. Know your customer (KYC) and Anti-money laundering (AML) what are they in the cryptocurrency industry?
  49. 49. What is a whitepaper? What is its purpose, and how do you write it?
  50. 50. How do you transfer cryptocurrencies?
  51. 51. What is EURT? How does it work?
  52. 52. What is an Initial Farming Offer (IFO)?
  53. 53. What is Regenerative Finance (ReFi)?
  54. 54. Bitcoin Pizza Day
  55. 55. What Is Stagflation and Why Does It Have a Negative Impact on the Market?
  56. 56. What are decentralized DAO organizations, and how do they work? What are DAO tokens?
  57. 57. CyberPunks - the story of the most popular NFT collection in the crypto industry!
  58. 58. Michael Saylor, Self-Proclaimed Bitcoin Maximalist
  59. 59. AI blockchain - a new look into the future?
  60. 60. The Bored Ape Yacht Club (BAYC) - the story of the popular NFT collection!
  61. 61. Who is Changpeng Zhao, CEO of Binance?
  62. 62. What is blockchain network congestion, and how does it work?
  63. 63. Azuki NFT collection guide: everything you need to know about it!
  64. 64. Who Is Craig Wright, the Alleged Creator of Bitcoin?
  65. 65. What Is Bitcoin (BTC.D) Dominance?
  66. 66. What is WorldCoin? Everything you need to know about this cryptocurrency!
  67. 67. Who is Brian Armstrong - CEO of Coinbase?
  68. 68. The 10 most expensive non-fungible tokens (NFTs) ever!
  69. 69. Web3's most popular social media platforms! Will they replace the platforms we know?
  70. 70. Cryptocurrency wallets: Hot Wallet vs. Cold Wallet - key differences!
  71. 71. Gavin Wood: Blockchain Visionary and Co-Founder of Ethereum
  72. 72. The memecoin story: madness or great investment?
  73. 73. Blockchain versus databases: key differences!
  74. 74. NFT Art: The digital art revolution - history and examples!
  75. 75. Who is Galy Gensler and the SEC? How does the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) affect the cryptocurrency market?
  76. 76. On-chain analysis in the cryptocurrency world: Everything you need to know about It
  77. 77. What are utility tokens and what use do they have in the cryptocurrency sector?
  78. 78. Can you pass on your cryptocurrencies after death? How do you pass on a cryptocurrency inheritance?
Lesson 11 of 78
In Progress

11. What is an altcoin?

It is an alternative coin, meaning all other cryptocurrencies and tokens that are not Bitcoin. We already have more than 5,000 different altcoins on the cryptocurrency market, which represents almost 60% of the total cryptocurrency market.

Initially, many alternative coins were created based on the most popular cryptocurrencyBitcoin. They were advertised at the time as an improved version of this flagship cryptocurrency. Over time, however, this idea was abandoned and altcoins that had absolutely nothing to do with Bitcoin began to be ‘produced’. 

While it is true that there are still many altcoins that have similar functions to Bitcoin, an increasing number of them are distinguished by other factors e.g. technology, transaction validation, mechanisms or smart contracts

The first ever altcoin was Namecoin and was created in 2011. It was based on Bitcoin’s source code and the PoW consensus mechanism. It was far more anonymous than Bitcoin and resisted censorship. Six months later, Litecoin was created, the first indispensable and serious rival to our top cryptocurrency. 

Different types of altcoins 

As we have already mentioned, there are more than 5,000 altcoins on the crypto  market. This means you have countless varieties of this coin to choose from. So, which one to decide, and what is worth investing in? Let’s have a look at what types of altcoins we have on the market: 

1. Mining altcoins – these are all cryptocurrencies other than Bitcoin that are dug by miners and are based on a Proof-of-Work algorithm. They are most similar to Bitcoin in their structure and functions. 

2. Stablecoins – we have already discussed this topic in our previous lessons, so you know very well what it is. As a reminder, we will just say that stablecoins were created to prevent cryptocurrency price fluctuations and guarantee security in this market. 

3. Security Tokens – alts that act, as securities. They are generally used to carry out Security Token Offering. 

4. Utility tokens – are used for ICOs, cryptocurrency project management, rewards, dividends, or even loyalty programs. 

Investing in altcoins 

The altcoin market is very unpredictable. They can be a great investment, but it can also be the other way around. All altcoins have very high volatility. Their value can fluctuate greatly in very short periods of time (unless you consider stablecoins). Thus, it can be seen that, on this basis alone, the investment involves a very high level of risk. Based on the above, however, don’t think that it’s not worth investing in alts at all. If it were true, they would not have appeared on the cryptocurrency market. Invest only as much as your finances allow. Investing in altcoins can be broken down into a few basic principles that crypto-experts follow: 

1. Expect risk and be ready for a small return on your invested capital. As we have already mentioned – altcoins are risky, but he who doesn’t take the challenge doesn’t drink the champagne, right? However, if you are not  prepared to lose some funds, don’t invest in alts. 

2. Invest in altcoins and related projects that you understand. Don’t push your funds into a project that a colleague told you was cool. Reminder again – alts are risky. Read and understand a project or a new cryptocurrency before you invest. 

3. Do your own research. Don’t listen to pseudo-investing gurus or fall for FOMO.  It’s your money. Seek information from sources, white papers, or social media. 

Altcoins are high risk, but through their fluctuations, they can yield a substantial rate of return. Of course, by doing a sizable amount of research, you come across altcoins that will definitely not be worth the effort. But there are those uncut diamonds that will be worth the risk. 

The most popular altcoins 

1. Litecoin (LTC) – a cryptocurrency based on open-source code. It is very similar to Bitcoin, but is much faster and more scalable than BTC. 

2. Ethereum (ETH) – a platform built on the blockchain that supports smart contracts, with its own native ETH token. It was created at the initiative of Vitalik Buterin. 

3. Monero (XMR) – was established in 2014. It is based on PoW and the CryptoNightV8 algorithm. It provides privacy to its users and is considered the most anonymous cryptocurrency in the world. 

4. Ripple (XRP) – who hasn’t heard about the recent adventures of Ripple and the SEC… Nevertheless, the cryptocurrency was created to improve and facilitate the bank payment system. 

5. Tether (USDT) – which is currently thriving and looking to connect with a growing range of currencies. It is the world’s third largest (in terms of capitalization) cryptocurrency. It is mostly backed by US dollars. 

6. Polkadot (DOT) – a multichain network that can collaborate with other blockchains. The network was founded in 2017, but has only recently become very popular. Due to its innovation, we will devote a separate lesson to the project. 

7. Binance Coin (BNB) – the creation of the world’s largest exchange, Binance.  One of the most popular utility tokens, which you can use to trade, pay for travel, shop purchases or even a gift for a loved one. 

8. Decentraland (MANA) – is a virtual world in which you buy and sell pieces of land, on which you build properties at the same time. Of course, you make money through this. The platform is based on the Ethereum blockchain.

9. Cardano (ADA) – this is also an extensive platform, based on the blockchain. It has its own cryptocurrency, its own source code, and is based on Proof-of Stake consensus. 

Summary 

As you can see from today’s lesson, the world does not end with Bitcoin. When you hear the word ‘cryptocurrency‘, don’t just think of the most well-known asset. There are many other variants that can yield a profitable return. Altcoins and stablecoins can be excellent choices.

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