Updated: Apr 15
But until now, the fear, uncertainty, and doubt that has been pervasive within the media and among some individuals has prevented others from appreciating the importance of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology generally in the not-too-distant future.
Sincerity be told, it is likely (and likely) that people who are unaware of this technology may have concerns regarding its potential. A personal attempt is being made with this post to educate people (if they so choose) about the potential of this technology and to demonstrate how cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology are set to impact the world in a profound way.
Across the globe (El Salvador is excluded from this classification for obvious reasons), regulators, governments, and central banks despise any attempt to undermine the legitimacy of their authority. As soon as an asset is referred to as a 'currency,' central banks are likely to become defensive and rally against it. Since they are sovereign authorities, they have the authority to regulate all aspects of currencies. Nevertheless, cryptocurrencies should (primarily) be considered digital assets native to a blockchain, with their use-cases providing insight into their utility.
A cryptocurrency such as Ethereum, on the other hand, is used to facilitate transactions on the Ethereum blockchain. Thus, its key use lies in the development of smart contracts and decentralized applications (dApps) based on the blockchain. It is important to note that this is a gross oversimplification of the uses for Ethereum, so readers looking for more details are encouraged to review this Forbes article. As Ethereum's core function is to facilitate the operation of other platforms, it is often referred to as 'digital oil.
The two largest cryptocurrencies are Bitcoin and Ethereum (based on market capitalization). In addition to these items, there are thousands of other digital assets with a variety of uses (and some meant purely as jokes or memes). Some of these applications are actually designed to directly replace fiat currencies (think of stable coins such as USDT (Tether) or USDC (Circle)). Using the same brush to paint the cryptoverse as a whole would be irresponsible and inaccurate.
Since I'm not a technical person, and lest I misunderstand what appears to be a wonderful technology, curious readers can watch this simple but enlightening video to gain a deeper understanding of what a blockchain is.