I was curious about the Bitcoin phenomenon. I found a Bitcoin vending machine in a cafe in Richmond and bought $5 worth of a Bitcoin. Later on I tried to sell it to get my money back but with no luck.
It turns out you can buy Bitcoins in most countries but you cannot sell them in Canada. I would have to go the US to sell them until Canadian laws allow them to be sold.
The Bitcoin mining process attempts to solve a complex math problem which takes a long time to solve. Hence a lot of energy is consumed by computers all over the world. This mining process provides a 10-minute delay to ensure that there is no double spending of bitcoins.
There are huge computer farms and hackers with black hats attempting to steal computer time from your computer i.e., cyberjacking, working on this math puzzle.
The first one that arrives at a solution is the only one allowed to add a Bitcoin and get paid for its mining effort. Everyone else has to start all over again.
There has to be an alternate way that does not waste so much energy. The new hashgraph software to establish distributed consensus and quantum computers may help to speed up the process and make it more efficient and secure.