bitcoin, litecoin, dogecoin, wtf?
If you’ve online during the last few years you have probably heard of bitcoin (a crypto-currency). Now, if you are like me, you are somewhere between sceptical to paranoid when it comes to divulging your money to some random online dude. In this blog entry I explain how to get some crypto-currency for free.
I will skip the history lessons, should you want to know more wikipedia is there for you.
The first thing you need is a wallet. This is the place where your currency is stored. The wallet can be located online, on your computer, on your mobile device or even on paper. The wallet analogy is good here because it is where you usually store your money. You can have multiple wallet on different platforms and transferring money between can be free.
This is the first thing you need to be aware. Some wallets contain a fee, where they take a certain amount (usually fixed value) of currency as a fee. As this entry is focused with the mindset of “get something from nothing” in this case “get currency for free”, we don’t want any fees on our transfers.
Setting up a wallet
I use MultiBit, Electrum and MultiDoge. Installing wallets is relatively easy process, so pick your wallet of choice and follow the instructions.
Ok, so now we have a wallet. The long string of random characters is the address to your wallet. So if someone knows this they can then transfer currency to your wallet.
Wallet says 0.00. While at this point this is to be expected, we want to change this, because you can’t send zeros. There are many ways to get crypto-currency.
- Transfer your local currency to crypto-currency.
- Start mining crypto-currency.
- Become a Beggar.
We skip the first because we are too sceptical to invest real money in, we skip the second because we are late to the game. So the third one is what we choose.
For us beggars there are these things called faucets, these dispense ‘free’ currency. Most of these are absolute garbage! They not only require you to unblock ads, which is bad in itself, but they also are scammish. I say that they are scammish, because they claim to give stuff for free, but in the fine-print it’s stated that you also need to reach a certain threshold of currency before they transfer that to your wallet. I used a a walled-garden style approach when visiting these trashy sites. By using a browser that I never use (ie. does not contain anything important) and removed that afterward from my linux box. I feel that I avoided the worst, but I feel bad for those you do this on their main browser on windows…
Anyway, there are good faucets too. These do not contaminate your system or are too annoying. Some of the ideas are quite intriguing. Like a page where people ask for help and those who contribute to the right answer get some currency.
I used paidbooks to get my first satoshis (0.00000001 of a bitcoin). They pay you to read books. for every 10 minutes you get 400 satoshi and the limit for payout is at 20000. You get the 20k on page 50 which takes about 8-9 hours to get. This is the only bitcoin faucet that I can recommend.
You won’t make any sort of living with this approach, but at least you get something to play with.
While bitcoin is the most known, there are hundreds of other alt-coins. At this point mining for bitcoins is useless, unless you have a special machine for that. However mining for alt-coins is still doable.
If bitcoin is gold, litecoin is silver, or so they say. Unfortunately I couldn’t find a single good faucet. All of them are rubbish so I’ll pass on litecoin for now.
:D dogecoins started as a joke crypto-currency. It may still be one, but at least it is easy to get some! No thresholds, just get a wallet and give the address to ** or **. You get 1-5 DOGE. While writing this 1 DOGE was $0.000143, so yeah. For starting experimenting with crypto-currencies dogecoin is the easiest to start with as it’s hugely popular.
One thing I miss is a program that holds all the wallets in. There is qoinpro, but that one is web-only and it limits the transfers, small transfers are impossible and there is a transfer fee. It does have some very nice feature as registered users get free fractions of multiple crypto-currencies, alas because of the high transfer fee it is useless. And the qoinpro website was last updated last year. There is one very interesting application. It’s name is coinomi, This is exactly what I’d like to have. Unfortunately it is for android only, but the FAQ states that a client for Linux, mac and windows is being worked on.
Will I start using crypto-currencies? I don’t know. I mean I do understand the value of this, but with my 23 DOGEs and 0.0008 BTC I can’t realistically fund anything. And frankly with my meagre account I can’t even support the projects I use. Perhaps in the future this changes, but for now it’s all just monopoly-money.
And finally. If you’d like to support me, here’s my wallet addresses: