While many Bitcoin alternatives have come about, few stand out as much as Datacoin. This unique cryptocurrency is a hidden gem among so many copycats. Here's 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know.
1. Datacoin Is Like Bitcoin, But Allows for Permanent, Unbelievably Secure Data Storage
Datacoin is similar to Bitcoin in that it is a peer-to-peer currency that can be traded for and exchanged for goods and services. While it isn't accepted by many merchants at this point, the special thing about the coin is that there is data stored on the Blockchain, and this data is paid for using Datacoins, but here's the crazy part:
With other data storage services, your data isn't exactly 100% safe. For instance, if you have a Dropbox folder on your computer, that data is in two places: the Dropbox server, and your computer. With Datacoin, every single user who is using the coin stores every single bit of information from the coin on their computer, assuming they are using the full wallet version of Datacoin. Datacoin will also soon feature an e-wallet, so that Datacoins can be used by people unable to keep the blockchain on their computers.
This means that if a user, say Edward Snowden, wanted to broadcast a politically controversial message, or even share a picture, they could do so - and that picture would be stored on thousands of computers within minutes (a number that will grow as Datacoin does). It would be completely impossible to censor or control. This is Datacoin's unbelievable promise.
2. Datacoin Will Also Be Able to Secretly Store User's Data
Max, Project Coordinator for Datacoin, said, "The wallet will be upgraded to allow users to store encrypted data in a simple manner. It will be as easy as clicking 'select file' and 'upload,' then a private key will be generated that will allow you, and only you, to access your Datacoin files."
Datacoin therefore will offer a way to keep files safer than they ever have been before, even if the size limit is on the small side. The creator of Datacoin, known only as Oocook, says the file size is limited to 128 kilobytes, but this will soon be upgraded so that a file of any size can be stored. Still, big files will be cost-prohibitive as putting files in the Datacoin Blockchain, where all the data is stored, costs roughly 50 Datacoins to the megabyte.
You can actually view every Datacoin file on this website
While at present, all these files are not directly visible, they can be accessed using these websites, the Project Coordinator, said that a Twitter-like service could exist using Datacoin's infrastructure, except that no one would be able to censor any Datacoin “tweet”, picture, or files.
3. A Datacoin Currently Costs $1, But You Can Get One For Free
Datacoin is traded on BTer.com, so you must purchase Bitcoin to buy it. The price is currently around $1.
However, to promote awareness of this versatile cryptocurrency, the Datacoin team is giving away a Datacoin to anyone who Retweets this tweet:
— Datacoin (@Datacoininfo) December 13, 2013
4. Datacoin is Created by 'Miners' Finding Really Long Prime Numbers
Datacoin transactions and uploaded data are merged together in its blockchain in a process that involves finding really long prime numbers, so-called Cunningham chains. This is similar to another cryptocurrency called Primecoin.
This may encourage people to buy the coin because prime numbers have value in academic mathematics, whereas Bitcoin mining has no positive after effects.
5. Datacoin is a Decentralized Autonomous Corporation With a Business Model Built Into It
Ian Boix, CEO of BlockchainCapital.com and Strategic Director of the Datacoin Foundation, says:
“Datacoin is a true step toward Bitcoin 2.0. It’s not just a currency, it has a simple but effective business model behind it. Datacoin is a currency that can be traded just like Bitcoin, but it can also be used to pay for data within the Datacoin Blockchain. Therefore, the cryptocurrency will be a self-sustaining business model. Generating wealth for its holders as a currency, and useful tool. This makes it twice as powerful as Bitcoin, imagine being able to pay and be paid in Apple shares!”
Ian classifies Datacoin as a special type of cryptocurrency or Distributed Autonomous Corporation that has functions outside of monetary exchange. He says, “Currently, there are only 4 coins that stand out for giving more value than a simple currency: Mastercoin, Protoshares, Namecoin and Datacoin.” These coins have an advantage over Bitcoin because they add intrinsic value to the currency. This stands in contrast to Bitcoin, which according to Alan Greenspan “has no intrinsic value.”
All in all, Datacoin is one of the more promising alternative currencies as it offers things Bitcoin simply does not. Time will tell how this exciting protocol is put to use.