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Cryptocurrencies such as ETH or BTC are created (“mined”) when a miner completes a certain amount of computations used to verify transactions that are added to a specific blockchain. (You can learn to mine crypto here.) The miner is rewarded for this effort with a small amount of cryptocurrency. In theory, every ETH or BTC is fungible. Said differently, my 10 BTC or my 50 ETH are worth exactly what your 10 BTC or 50 ETH are worth, and they are interchangeable. There are hundreds of cryptocurrencies that are actively trading on hundreds of exchanges worldwide.
https://crypto.com – current prices
https://coinlib.io – crypto price widgets you can embed
NFTs are created (“minted”) when a unique, standardized token and associated smart contract are recorded on a blockchain. In theory, NFTs are non-fungible. Said differently, the NFT of Nyan Cat (which sold at auction for $510,945) is unique and not interchangeable with other versions of the same file.
If you only have time to read one thing, read Devin Finzer’s “The NFT Bible.”
In no particular order, here are some places to mint NFTs:
https://opensea.io/ – The largest NFT marketplace
https://notfungible.com/ – The world’s leading NFT luxury art gallery and NFT artist incubator
https://makersplace.com/ – Truly unique digital creations, by the World’s Most Creative Minds.
https://niftygateway.com/ – Nifty Gateway is the premier marketplace for Nifties, which are digital items you can truly own.
https://rarible.com/ – an NFT marketplace that wants to “evolve into a fully Decentralized Autonomous Organization (DAO), where all governance and decision rights belong to the platform users.”
https://zora.co/ – a universal media registry protocol.
https://mintable.app/ – Turn any creation into an item on the blockchain
https://lazy.com/ – The lazy way to show off your NFTs.
Cryptocurrency exchanges act as an intermediary between a buyer and seller, making money through commissions. You can buy, sell or trade your crypto for other crypto or fiat currencies. Not all exchanges offer access to all currencies. Choose your exchange carefully to ensure it meets your risk profile, your regulatory requirements, and your trading style.
Decentralization is the key feature of cryptocurrency and its underlying technology. So it might surprise you to learn that most cryptocurrency transactions go through centralized exchanges. Centralized exchanges generally offer a higher degree of reliability and, more importantly, there is a company that you can hold accountable for the execution of your transactions. Most (not all) centralized exchanges must comply with know your customer rules and comply with at least some regulatory requirements.
Huobi (Not available in USA) – A Global Cryptocurrency Leader Since 2013
Kraken – We put the power in your hands to buy, sell and trade digital currency.
Bithumb – a company that creates the future of a more convenient and more reliable digital financial platform through constant innovation.
Bitfinex – The home of digital asset trading
Bitstamp – a proven track record and a mature approach to the industry, we provide reliable trading of cryptocurrencies.
KuCoin – Find the next crypto gem on KuCoin
FTX – FTX.US is a brand new US-regulated cryptocurrency exchange, built from the ground up.
bitFlyer – Easily buy and sell Bitcoin, Ethereum, and more from the only platform in the world licensed in the US, EU, and Japan. Trusted by millions since 2014.
Gemini – Gemini is a simple, elegant, and secure platform to build your crypto portfolio. Buying, selling, and storing your cryptocurrency has never been this seamless.
Blockfi – With BlockFi, you can use cryptocurrency to earn interest at up to 8.6% APY, borrow cash, and buy or sell crypto. There are no hidden fees, no minimum balances, and no reason to wait.
eToro – Trade popular cryptocurrencies. Explore professionally managed portfolios. Connect with over 20M traders.
Bakkt – Discover money you never knew you had by using Bakkt to track, spend, and send your digital assets.
Blockchain.com – The World’s Most Popular Way to Buy, Hold, and Use Crypto
Gate – Your gateway to cryptocurrency
Decentralized cryptocurrency exchanges (DEX) allow users to execute transactions without an intermediary. They are, “decentralized.” This makes DEX transactions attractive to those who wish to keep their trading activity private. Generally speaking, DEX transactions are crypto-to-crypto. Decentralized exchanges do not facilitate transactions between crypto and fiat currencies.
Uniswap (V2) – Guaranteed liquidity for millions of users and hundreds of Ethereum applications.
Tokenlon – Smart contract-based decentralized trading. Secure, reliable and seamless mobile trading experience.
0x Protocol – 0x API is a professional grade liquidity aggregator enabling the future of DeFi applications
Venus – A Decentralized Marketplace for Lenders and Borrowers with Borderless Stablecoins.
Sushiswap – Be a DeFi Chef with Sushi.
Swap, earn, stack yields, lend, borrow, leverage all on one decentralized, community driven platform. Welcome home to DeFi.
Compound – Compound is an algorithmic, autonomous interest rate protocol built for developers, to unlock a universe of open financial applications.
BurgerSwap – BurgerSwap is a democratized AMM on Binance Smart Chain with four main functions: Swap, Liquidity Pool, Governance, ERC20-BEP20 token transfer [cross] Bridge, Farm, and IFO. BurgerSwap strives to provide the most decentralized and democratic user experience for DeFi believers all around the world.
Curve Finance – Curve is an exchange liquidity pool on Ethereum (like Uniswap) designed for (1) extremely efficient stablecoin trading (2) low risk, supplemental fee income for liquidity providers, without an opportunity cost.
1inch Exchange – Access the most liquidity, lowest slippage and best exchange rates across Ethereum and Binance Smart Chain.
PancakeSwap – The #1 AMM and yield farm on Binance Smart Chain.
You will need at least one crypto wallet. Do your research. Each wallet has pros and cons and no single wallet is right for everyone, or for every application. There are dozens, if not hundreds, of crypto wallets available. The following examples are popular choices.
Ledger – The world’s most popular hardware wallet.
Trezor – Invented for your digital freedom.
Coinbase – The secure app to store crypto yourself.
Coinomi – One free, simple, and secure blockchain wallet for all your devices.
Metamask – A crypto wallet & gateway to blockchain apps.
If you’re completely new to distributed ledgers, smart contracts and crypto and want to write some code, there are many wonderful free resources available online. One of the best is FreeCodeCamp.org. You can learn how to write your first smart contract here.
Solidity – Solidity is an object-oriented, high-level language for implementing smart contracts. Smart contracts are programs which govern the behavior of accounts within the Ethereum state.
Truffle Suite – The Truffle Suite gets developers from idea to dapp as comfortably as possible.
Brownie – a Python-based development and testing framework for smart contracts targeting the Ethereum Virtual Machine.
Embark – The all-in-one developer platform for building and deploying decentralized applications.
OpenZeppelin – OpenZeppelin provides security products to build, automate, and operate decentralized applications. We also protect leading organizations by performing security audits on their systems and products.
Chainlink – decentralized oracle network provides reliable, tamper-proof inputs and outputs for complex smart contracts on any blockchain.
Infura – The Infura API suite provides instant access over HTTPS and WebSockets to the Ethereum and IPFS networks. Infrastructure for your Web 3.0 app has never been easier.
Etherscan – a Block Explorer and Analytics Platform for Ethereum, a decentralized smart contracts platform.
IPFS – The InterPlanetary File System is a peer-to-peer hypermedia protocol designed to make the web faster, safer, and more open.
Pinata – The Easiest Way to Use IPFS.
create-eth-app – Create Ethereum-powered apps with one command.
One Click Dapp – Turn any smart contract into a dapp.
scaffold-eth – is everything you need to get started building decentralized applications powered by Ethereum.
Remix Ethereum IDE – an open source web and desktop application. It fosters a fast development cycle and has a rich set of plugins with intuitive GUIs. Remix is used for the entire journey of contract development as well as being a playground for learning and teaching Ethereum.
Epirus Explorer – provides all of the business metrics you need to support your blockchain and smart contract applications.
Dapp & DeFi Assets
DeFi platforms (Decentralized Finance) are the underlying technologies that enable financial services to be offered with no central authority. The following organizations, toolsets and frameworks each offer important component parts to the quickly-evolving DeFi ecosystem.
https://ethereum.org/en/developers/docs/dapps/ – A decentralized application (dapp) is an application built on a decentralized network that combines a smart contract and a frontend user interface. Note, in Ethereum smart-contracts are accessible and transparent – like open APIs – so your dapp can even include a smart contract that someone else has written.
https://bandprotocol.com/ – Band Protocol is a cross-chain data oracle platform that aggregates and connects real-world data and APIs to smart contracts.
https://chain.link/ – Chainlink’s decentralized oracle network provides reliable, tamper-proof inputs and outputs for complex smart contracts on any blockchain.
https://kyber.network/ – Kyber is a blockchain-based liquidity protocol that aggregates liquidity from a wide range of reserves, powering instant and secure token exchange in any decentralized application.
https://polkadot.network/ – A scalable, interoperable & secure network protocol for the next web
https://uniswap.org/ – Uniswap empowers developers, liquidity providers and traders to participate in a financial marketplace that is open and accessible to all.
https://projectserum.com/ – Serum is a decentralized exchange (DEX) and ecosystem that brings unprecedented speed and low transaction costs to decentralized finance. It is built on Solana and is completely permissionless.
https://compound.finance/ – Compound is an algorithmic, autonomous interest rate protocol built for developers, to unlock a universe of open financial applications.
https://yearn.finance/ – Yearn Finance is a suite of products in Decentralized Finance (DeFi) that provides lending aggregation, yield generation, and insurance on the Ethereum blockchain. The protocol is maintained by various independent developers and is governed by YFI holders.
https://umaproject.org/ – UMA builds open-source infrastructure for “priceless” financial contracts on Ethereum. (Smart Contract Templates, Oracle Services)
https://makerdao.com/en/ – The Maker Protocol is the platform through which anyone, anywhere can generate the Dai stablecoin against crypto collateral assets.
If you have any questions, comments, or just want to chat about distributed ledgers, DeFi, Cryptocurrency, Blockchain, NFTs or related technologies, please feel free to reach out.
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