Bitcoin and a lot of other major cryptocurrencies have suddenly increased, with bitcoin price rising almost $1,000 in just minutes.
(7:55pm EST 12/04/2019) After suddenly surging, the bitcoin price has lost almost all of its gains, dropping to around $7,200 per bitcoin.
There are other major cryptocurrencies
Ethereum logo looks like many triangles. Bitcoin has a lower coin supply and is more liquid than Ethereum, but Ethereum has better technology and provides more uses than Bitcoin does.
Ripple is a real-time gross settlement system, currency exchange and remittance network created by Ripple Labs Inc. (a USA-based technology company).
Bitcoin Cash is a fork of Bitcoin. Bitcoin Cash is a spin-off or altcoin that was created in 2017.
Zcash is a cryptocurrency aimed at using cryptography to provide enhanced privacy for its users compared to other cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin. Like Bitcoin, Zcash has a fixed total supply of 21 million units.
Dash is an open source cryptocurrency. It is a form of decentralized autonomous organization run by a subset of users. They are called "masternodes". It is an altcoin that was forked from the Bitcoin protocol. The currency allows fast transactions that can be untraceable.
Monero is an open-source cryptocurrency. It was created in April 2014. It focuses on privacy and decentralization. Monero uses an obfuscated public ledger. This means anybody can broadcast or send transactions, but no outside observer can tell the source, amount or destination.
On Dec. 5, 2019: 1 Bitcoin equals 7,379.92 United States Dollars (USD).
A transaction is a transfer of value between Bitcoin wallets. This gets included in the block chain. Bitcoin wallets keep a secret piece of data called a private key or seed. This is used to sign transactions, providing a mathematical proof that they have come from the owner of the wallet.
You could use your computer's CPU to mine for bitcoins. In reality, this would be pretty slow and there is no point. You can enhance your bitcoin hash rate by adding graphics hardware to your computer. Graphics cards feature graphical processing units (GPUs).