Learn the definitions and meanings behind key bitcoin and cryptocurrency terms. We cover everything from the building blocks of the blockchain, to lesser-known crypto slang, and everything in between.
‘ATH’ stands for ‘All Time High.’ In general terms, it refers to the highest price or point that an asset or item has ever achieved.
‘ATL’ stands for ‘all time low.’ It refers to the lowest price or value that an asset or item has ever been at.
Altcoin is an abbreviation of ‘Alternative Coin’ and is used to refer to all cryptocurrencies and tokens other than bitcoin and Ethereum.
The Annual Percentage Rate (APR) of a cryptocurrency refers to the estimated profits or rewards that you will receive over a specific timeframe.
An annual percentage yield (APY) account is a savings account that functions in the same way for cryptocurrency as an annual percentage rate (APR) account does for fiat currency bank accounts.
Bitcoin Dominance (BTCD) refers to how much of the total cryptocurrency market is comprises of bitcoin (BTC). It is measured as a ratio between the market capitalization of BTC against all other cryptocurrencies.
A bitcoin maximalist (maxi) is someone who believes that bitcoin is the only true cryptocurrency and is the only one that will be utilized in the future once the hype has died down and the world has adapted to crypto.
A new type of NFT, Bitcoin Ordinals, are connected to the Bitcoin blockchain and are gaining significant traction as of late.
The Bitcoin Price Index (BPI), also known as the CoinDesk Bitcoin Price Index (XBX), shows the price of Bitcoin against a number of other crypto and fiat currencies.
A blockchain block is a like an encoded block in an Excel spreadsheet that cannot be edited once it has been completely filled in.
In blockchain technology, ‘block depth’ refers to the number of blocks mined after a specific block. Conversely, ‘block height’ refers to the number of blocks that preceded the block in question.
A block explorer is an online app that allows the user to discover the details of all of the transactions that have ever transpired on a particular blockchain.
A block reward is the remuneration received by nodes that participate in verifying a blockchain protocol or transaction.
A blockchain is a digital distributed ledger that is spread across nodes in a network, rather than storing data in a single location.
A blockchain address, or ‘crypto address,’ is something like a cryptographic email address that is unique to the address holder.
A blockchain bridge allows users to transact cryptocurrencies across different blockchains.
Consensus is when at least 51% of the nodes on a blockchain network approve a transaction taking place.
A consortium, also known as a federated blockchain, is a type of blockchain that is operated within a particular industry or company.
A cryptocurrency bull run is a period when prices of cryptocurrency are consistently rising.
Byzantine Fault Tolerance is a property of a network algorithm or consensus protocol that operates on a distributed network to resolve errors or inconsistencies on the network by comparing data across the network and accepting the data that matches that of the majority of the network.
The processing of permanently removing cryptocurrency coins from circulation is referred to as ‘burning’ coins.
‘CT’ stands for ‘Crypto Twitter’ and refers to the active Twitter community on Twitter who Tweet about various crypto and blockchain topics on the platform.
A crypto wallet is a software program that allows a user to store either fiat money or cryptocurrencies online.
A cryptocurrency exchange is an online platform that allows users to trade fiat for cryptocurrency and exchange crypto for other coins.
Cryptography refers to techniques that allow for an individual or network to transfer, alter and store electronic data in a secure and private way.
A decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) is a blockchain-based organization that is governed by all its members via smart contract-enforced governance rules.
A ‘dApp’ is an acronym for a ‘decentralized application.’ dApps are developed on the Ethereum blockchain, which means that although they operate just like regular applications, they are decentralized and therefore more secure.
Decentralization is when the decision-making processes and activities of on organization are distributed across various locations instead of just being conducted in a single, central location.
Decentralized finance (DeFi) is a broad concept that encapsulates all blockchain-based transactions, as it refers to any peer-to-peer transactions and cryptocurrency investments that occur on the blockchain.
Dollar cost averaging, or ‘DCA’, refers to the automatic process of investing a certain amount of money in a cryptocurrency periodically.
An ERC-721 is an Ethereum-based token is a unique and non-interchangeable unit of data stored on a digital ledger. It represents proof of ownership of either a tangible or intangible asset.
Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) in the cryptocurrency space refers to the fear of missing an investment opportunity in the space.
FUD is an acronym for ‘fear, uncertainty and doubt.’ It was traditionally used as a marketing strategy to persuade the target audience to adopt a particular perception through fear.
Fiat currency is a legal tender that is issued by a government, person or institution and given value by them without having any resources to back them up.
Fully Diluted Valuation (FDV) is a cryptocurrency price valuation metric that is calculated by multiplying a coin’s maximum potential supply by its current price.
A gossip protocol is a protocol that is designed to ensure that data is disseminated rapidly across all computing devices in a distributed network on the basis of peer-to-peer (P2P) communication.
In cryptocurrency and blockchain technology, the hash rate refers to the number of computations that were processed per second by all nodes while the attempted to crack the hash value of the hashing algorithm.
Cryptographic hashing is the process whereby a mathematical function is used to generate values from a string of text.
‘HODL’ is the cryptocurrency-specific version of the financial term ‘hold.’ It means to invest in cryptocurrency with the intent of keep it for the long-term in the hope of it gaining value over time.
As it sounds, ‘hopium’ is a slang term that combines ‘hope’ and ‘opium’ to refer to a cryptocurrency trader who has unrealistic hopes of the crypto’s price rising with no real facts to support their expectation.
An Initial DEX Offering, also known as an IDO, is a cryptocurrency crowdfunding method that allows a blockchain project to introduce their native cryptocurrencies through decentralized exchanges.
An Initial Game offering (IGO) is a type of crowdfunding method for blockchain-based games.
Lazy minting refers to an NFT being created off-chain and only being minted onto a blockchain once the NFT has been purchased.
‘LFG’ is a slang term that is used as a rallying cry for cryptocurrency enthusiasts that stands for ‘Let’s [bleep] Go!’
Cryptocurrency market capitalization (market cap) refers to the total value of cryptocurrency that is available in the market.
A mining pool is a group of blockchain miners who connect the computing power of their nodes together in order to strengthen their computing power and share any rewards gained by completing a block.
Minting refers to the creation of new cryptocurrencies or NFTs by means of a proof-of-stake consensus protocol.
NGMI stands for ‘Not Going to Make It’ and is the opposite term for WGMI or We’re Going to Make It.
NFA could refer to one of two things in cryptocurrency, depending on context. The first is as an abbreviation for ‘Not Financial Advice,’ the other is as an abbreviation for ‘National Futures Association.’
A private blockchain is a contained blockchain that can only be accessed by select nodes that are invited to join the network.
A Profile Picture (PFP) is a type of NFT collection that is intended to be used as the owner’s profile picture on a social media network.
A public blockchain is a truly decentralized blockchain that is open for anyone to join and to verify and read all transactions that occur within the public network.
A ‘rug pool’ is a type of cryptocurrency scam whereby the developers attract investors and then figuratively ‘pull the rug out from under them,’ meaning that they will abandon the project and disappear with the proceeds.
‘SATS’ is the abbreviation for ‘satoshis,’ in the same way that ‘USD’ is an abbreviation for ‘United States Dollar.’
“Shilling” is a negative term in the cryptocurrency space that refers to the practice of a malicious actor excessively promoting a specific cryptocurrency with the aim of inflating its value so as to dump their crypto at a high price.
Slippage refers to the difference in expected price versus actual price when performing a cryptocurrency transaction.
‘Staking’ is a type of crpytocurrency reward that is given to certain cryptocurrency holders on particular blockchains.
Token swapping refers to the process of transferring digital assets from one blockchain to another blockchain.
An asset’s time-weighted average price (TWAP) is a measure of the price of a cryptocurrency over a specific period of time.
Wash trading in cryptocurrency refers to a type of market manipulation whereby someone buys and sells the same asset multiple times in a short period to deceive other cryptocurrency traders into believing that there is a higher demand for it than there is, thereby artificially driving up the market price.
WGMI means ‘We’re Going to Make It’, a term used in the cryptocurrency community to denote optimism.