We put together A to Z glossary of terms around blockchain and cryptocurrency terminology, buzz words, slang and abbreviations for you.

For those who are getting into the space, or would just like to use this for reference, this information should be a really good way to familiarise yourself with most of the lingo (let us know if we have missed anything). You can explore them in more detail as and when you need to, it can take a little bit of time to get your head around some of the terminology and technology but its a fun learning curve.

A is for...
A 51% Attack
A cryptocurrency address is a place where the users coins are stored. From this address you can receive and spend transactions. These addresses lie on the blockchain. You can use this address many times over and is made up of a unique string typically over 30 characters long.

A cryptocurrency address is a place where the users coins are stored. From this address you can receive and spend transactions. These addresses lie on the blockchain. You can use this address many times over and is made up of a unique string typically over 30 characters long.

A marketing method where the cryptocurrency provider can give away coins or reward the users by referring news and event with their contacts and network.

In mathematics and computer science an algorithm is a structured sequence of well-defined instructions, typically to solve or perform a computation task.

ATL / All Time High
Highest price of a cryptocurrency

ATL / All Time Low
Lowest price of a cryptocurrency

All other coins other than bitcoin are classed as Alt coins (Alternative), as bitcoin was the first to be established.

AML / Anti-Money Laundering
Laws which are aimed to prevent criminals laundering money through cryptocurrency.

Also known as an application Specific Integrated Circuit. A unique computer hardware solution designed to mine cryptocurrency.

A clever and ‘legal’ way of buying and selling cryptocurrencies on different exchanges due to their individual ‘margin’ buy and sell differences.

Atomic Swap
Exchanging one cryptocurrency for another at current rates. You do not need to buy or sell for this process to be carried out.

B is for...
Having a large bag of cryptocurrency.

A declining price movement which could be in days, weeks, months etc.

Bear Trap
Traders which agree to sell at a specific time so the market drops due to panic sell. They then buy back at a lower price, creating additional gains as the price recovers in value.

The first ever cryptocurrency. Created by an anonymous entity called Satoshi Nakamoto. The first ‘peer to peer’ decentralised electronic cash system.

A Block holds a piece of historical data of a transaction on a blockchain. This transaction cannot be reversed and can be viewed in realtime at any time.

Block Explorer
These are typically pieces of software that can view the transactions of a blockchain, They are great for analysis for trends, coin supply and network hash rate for example.

Block Height
This is how high the blocks are connected together, they increment up, the first being called a Genesis block (0).

Block Reward
A payment to the miner who verifies the block by calculating the hash. The transaction exposes new coins which are rewarded to the miner (A segment of this).

The blockchain is a decentralised ledger, which is saved on thousands of computers around the world. Each time the block is filled up (capacity depends on the blockchain), the block is connected up to the last block which was verified. It would be almost impossible to shut the blockchain down unless you shut the internet down as there is no master copy like you have in traditional banking environments.

BTFD / Buy the F**king Dip
A good time to buy on the low price of a cryptocurrency.

A increasing price movement which could be in days, weeks, months etc.

Cryptocurrency that has been discontinued, eradicated from the system. This is no longer spendable, and is considering to be removed from circulation.

Buy Wall
A buy wall happens when a large order is placed at a certain value. The demand can out strip supply at that point in time, when the order had been fulfilled.

C is for...
CAP / Market Capitalisation
A total value of all a company’s shares of stock. This is worked out by multiplying the price of a stock by its total number of outstanding shares.

Central Ledger
A centralised ledger, typically how a bank operates. this has all the financial records in house.

Chain Linking
A way of transferring one cryptocurrency to another. Typically the two blockchains log the transaction on their own blockchains.

Terminology of encrypting and decrypting information.

Circulating Supply
Cryptocurrency which is available to be traded. Some are not released, burnt or reserved for a future timescale.

Cold Storage
Security option to have your cryptocurrency offline. Typically a Paper Wallet.

A transaction which has been accepted by the network, and added to the blockchain.

A verification process to validity that a transaction has been approved by all the nodes on the network.

Consensus Process
Without nodes we can not prove consensus. These nodes maintain the decentralised ledger.

Consortium blockchain
A commercially owned network. but equally transparent.

A digital asset designed to work as a medium of exchange. It uses cryptography to secure financial transactions, control the creation of additional units, and verify the transfer of assets.

Cryptographic Hash Function
Converts an input transaction into a string thats registered on a blockchain. Different cryptocurrencies have different methods for registering these.

Encrypting and decrypting information in a secure algorithmic manner.

D is for...
DAO / Decentralised Autonomous Information
Run by software on a computer in an automated manner, such as that it is not solely managed by people.

dApp / Decentralised Application
Not operated or managed by a centralised source. Is normally open source, which uses the block chain for stored data.

The reversal of encryption, it converts ineligible information which has been encrypted, back into plain text.

A cryptocurrency which decreases in demand, this normally lowers its value.

Depth Chart
A transparent graph which display bid (buy orders) and ask (sell order) prices on a chart. This can give you additional information such as buy and sell walls.

Deterministic Wallet
A wallet that creates multiple keys from a seed. You can recover your seed if you loose your wallet. You can generate many variations of key from this seed, which makes it easier to store.

The transactions that are all trying to be confirmed at the same time divided by the total power of the live nodes. The higher the demand, the higher the cost for transacting.

Digital Commodity
A digital asset which has value but hard to get.

Digital Currency
An electronic form of money transferred over a network, as a medium of exchange.

Digital Signature
An authentication confirmation generated by your encrypted public key.

Distributed Ledger
A decentralised ledger, spread over the internet as blockchain technology with multiple mirrored nodes.

Double Spend
Trying to spend / send the same cryptocurrency at the same time (Byzantine Generals’ Problem).

Selling your cryptocurrency coin in one hit.

Traders or speculators who sell at the same time, either through fear or collectively as a team, which ultimately creates a quick downward trend in the price.

Dust Transaction
Flooding the network with minor transactions.

‘Do Your Own Research’.

E is for...
Turning plain text into information using a disguised way writing code using a cipher.

Ethereum Request for Comments’ part of the Ethereum ecosystem.

A token based on the Ethereum network, that you can transact with. Other cryptocurrencies also rely on this token, by using its integrated technology.

The middle man of a transaction (third party) who holds funds until the agreement is fulfilled by both parties.

One of the main ‘ALT’ coins which competes with Bitcoin. They also have a slightly decentralised model where they can create dApps and also create smart contracts.

EVM / Ethereum Virtual Machine
This sits in the cloud as a virtual machine, it is used by all the nodes on the network creating a level of abstraction between the executing code and the executing machine.

A place to trade cryptocurrencies. Also a way of exchanging fiat currencies to cryptocurrencies. A place to hold your coins (not recommended) Their pricing structure differs from exchange to exchange.

F is for...
FA / Fundamental Analysis
A way of checking the core structure of a company, including directors, products, share price, market opinion and environmental factors. This can give you price opinion on whether to buy or sell, in addition to technical analysis.

A way of obtaining cryptocurrency for joining a service, website or product.

Legal tender terminology for government entities, such as the pound, dollar, euro or yen.

Also know as ‘Fear Of Missing Out’. A psychological trait for most speculators.

A duplicate blockchain used as a new strain of technology by a group of individuals running at the same time on the same network. Soft forks can be for internal use to fix a security flaw for example. a Hard fork is a much bigger process.

If there is no hindrance on the Network.

A negative term on a cryptocurrency coin or the general market, putting the frighteners on a situation can sometimes be called ‘Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt’.

Full Node
A completely downloaded blockchain containing the whole transaction history. A good way to support a system and help verification and security.

Futures Contract
A pre-approved contract between two parties when a price is allocated. Perfect for when a buyer goes short and a seller goes long.

G is for...
The computation power to complete a transaction on the Ethereum network. If you do not have enough Gas the transaction will be rejected, if it is less, the difference will be refunded.

Gas Limit
How much a user is prepared to pay for a transaction on the Ethereum network.

Gas Price
The higher the Gas price the faster your transaction should go through as the miners will want to process this, as it is more advantageous for them.

Genesis Block
The first block generated on a blockchain.

Gwei is also called nanoether, or simply nano based on the Ethereum network which denotes the ninth power of the fractional ETH.

H is for...
Every 210,000 blocks, or roughly every four years, the total number of bitcoin that miners can potentially win is halved.

Hard Cap
The maximum amount of coin offerings an ICO will put on offer to raise money to develop the cryptocurrency technology.

Hard Fork
When the blockchain splits into another version. Both versions can now co-exist with each other if the community supports them both, but they are two completely different chains. The values of each can also vary based on supply and demand.

Hardware Wallet
Representative of a USB Stick that stores your cryptocurrency in an encrypted form. It is one of the most secure ways to hoard your cryptocurrency.

Hashing in blockchain refers to a process of inputing an item of whatever length, which then reflects an output item of a fixed length.

Hash Rate
The speed at which a cryptocurrency mining machine operates. The faster the hash rate the more chance of solving a block on a blockchain to receive an award. Blocks are mathematical puzzles to solve which are highly complex, a better hash rate equals better opportunity.

Hashing Power
Hash rate of a computer measured in several factors such as: KH/s, MH/s, GH/s, TH/s, PH/s and EH/s.

Hold on for dear life

I is for...
Initial coin offering – see below.

Initial Coin Offering
Cryptocurrency coins up for sale to raise money for development, typically in the beginning of a new launch.

J is for...
Joy of missing out
K is for...
Know your customer. A verification process to identify a customer. Typically a legal obligation process from a financial institution.
L is for...
If somebody is getting rich quickly, they often say ‘Lambo’ as if to say they are going to purchase a super car like a Lamborghini.

A financial record of transactions which cant be changed only appended, with additional transactions.

Financial leverage is the use of borrowed money (debt) to finance the purchase of assets.

Lightning Network
The Lightning Network is a ‘Layer 2’ payment protocol that operates on top of a blockchain-based cryptocurrency like bitcoin.

Limit Order/Limit Buy/Limit Sell
A rule to either buy or sell at a certain price.

How easy it is to buy or sell without impacting the overall market price.

Accumulating cryptocurrency in the hope that it will rise in value over the long term.

M is for...
Moving Average Convergence Divergence.

Margin Bear Position
Taking a position on the hope of a down trend by going short.

Margin Bull Position
Taking a position on the hope of a up trend by going long.

Market Capitalisation
The total number of coins in supply multiplied by the price. MARKET CAP = SUPPLY x PRICE

Margin Trading
Buying more than you can afford using leverage provided by an exchange.

Market Order
A Market Order does not wait until a certain price to buy or sell, it does so at the price of the time the transaction order is made.

Market Capitalisation.

Computer power which solves encryption challenges and is granted new fractions of the cryptocurrency in return.

Mining Contract
A process to rent out the hashing power of a mining hardware farm over a set period.

Mining Pool
More than one miner which combines their computing power together to try and help complete the transactions required to start a new block in the blockchain. The rewards are distributed between those in the Mining Pool proportionately based on power contribution.

A term to describe a major price movement upwards.

Moving Average Convergence Divergence
Also called MACD a technical analysis of a cryptocurrency’s value into the future.

Money Services Business

Multipool Mining
If a miner which moves from one cryptocurrency blockchain to another for cryptocurrency gain.

Multi Signature (Multi Sig Wallets)
A secure process to have more than one user provide their passcode in order for a transaction to go through.

N is for...
A network of Nodes which contributes to the operation of a specific blockchain.

A computer that is connected to a blockchain’s network is commonly called a Node.

When a miner hashes a transaction, a random number is generated, this is called a Nonce.

O is for...
One Cancels the Other Order

One Cancels the Other Order
When two orders for cryptocurrency are placed at the same time. The one that gets accepted cancels the other.

Smart contracts on a blockchain are stored on a network. They can only be accessed through an Oracle. The Oracle is software that sends the data to and from the smart contract and the outside world.

Many orders of a cryptocurrency which end up being saturated, after an initial increase, the price normally comes down.

Cryptocurrency which keeps on getting sold, some worry whether it will bounce back.

P is for...
Paper Wallet
Having your private key on a physical piece of documentation is referred to a Paper Wallet. Sometimes referred to as Cold Storage.

Peer to Peer

Peer to Peer
A transaction between two or more computers which has no centralised network (no middle man).

Pump and Dump

A period before an ICO goes public, selected people have the opportunity to purchase cryptocurrency.

Private Key
A string of numbers and letters that are used to access your wallet. These should not be disclosed to anyone but you.

Proof of Authority (PoA)
A group of specific Nodes given the authority to approve. This is a much faster method than proof of work.

Proof of Stake (PoS)
The reward given to miners for providing their computational power to the network.

Proof of Work (PoW)
Computational power from a miner that shows their effort to approve a transaction. If this gets hashed by the miner then they receive a reward.

Rules which defines how data is exchanged, parsed and sends commands across a network.

Public blockchain
A blockchain that can be accessed on a full Node on ones computer.

Public Key
A unique wallet address, which appears as a long string of letters and numbers. You can send and receive cryptocurrency with this.

An upward price movement, the price can be pushed up by whales or big communities working together.

Pump and Dump
Purchasing lots of one type of cryptocurrency to push the price up. Selling up when the times right to maximise your profit.

R is for...
A bad loss on a trade.

Relative Strength Index
A form of technical analysis to determine the momentum of price change over time.

Ring Signature
An anonymous transaction on a blockchain, without identifying which of the Nodes requested the transaction.

Relative Strength Index

S is for...
Satoshi Nakamoto
The founder or founders that created Bitcoin.

This is the smallest unit of Bitcoin.

An algorithm that encrypts a key that take up a lot of RAM to hash it.

A seed is a phrase or a series of words that can be used to regenerate your wallet. If you lose your seed then you could potentially lose your coins.

Segregated Witness
Increasing a transaction speed by separating the digital signature data from transaction data.

Segregated Witness.

Selfish Mining
A miner that finds or creates a new block, but does not share the information with the network. Whilst other miners a wasting resources on the now old block, the selfish miner is working on the next one.

Sell Wall
When a large Limit Order has been placed to sell when a cryptocurrency reaches a certain value.

A Cryptographic hash algorithm used by Bitcoin. It is also used by a other alt coins.

A scaling solution which splits up the full blockchain history across many nodes. The nodes do not need the whole copy, this also conserves the speed of the network.

Shit Coin
A cryptocurrency which is not expected to last.

When an investor borrows cryptocurrency and immediately sells them, hoping he or she can scoop them up later at a lower price.

Smart Contracts
When a contract is written in computer code, as opposed to traditional legal language. This lets two parties agree to complex terms without needing to trust each other in a decentralised way without third parties.

Soft Fork
A soft fork is a change to a cryptocurrency protocol where only previously valid blocks/transactions are made invalid. Since old nodes will recognise the new blocks as valid, a soft fork is backward-compatible.

Software Wallet
A software wallet is a application that sits on your computer’s pc or laptop hard drive and gives you complete control and a higher level of security. The reason being, is that you can access your cryptocurrency through this software wallet.

A programming language like JavaScript, but its main use case is to use it to create smart contracts. Typically used on the Ethereum network but is also used on other private networks.

T is for...
Technical Analysis

Technical Analysis
A trading tool to look at historical data on a cryptocurrency to gauge a trade and/or its possible future price.

Test Net
A cryptocurrency which tests out a new blockchain either before launch or an additional version. A Test Net does not use a live network that may effect a current one in use and will not effect its value.

A moment in time when a transaction was encrypted. It is proof that the data in the transaction is accountable.

The ‘coin’ of a cryptocurrency is a Token. This can be owned, bought and sold.

Tokenless Ledger
A distributed ledger exists but does not need a currency in which to operate.

Term of Reference.

The value of cryptocurrency when moved from one wallet to another on a blockchain network.

Transaction Fee
The fee given to the miners involved in successfully approving a transaction on the blockchain. An an exchange can also take a cut of the overall transaction fee.

Turing Completeness
Most modern programming languages are Turing-complete.This means that a system is able to recognise or decide other data-manipulation rule sets.

U is for...
An unconfirmed state has not been appended to the blockchain.

Unspent Transaction Output
Output of a blockchain transaction that has not been spent.

Unspent Transaction Output

V is for...
The fluctuation in an asset’s price.
W is for...
A unique code, which represents its ‘address’ on the blockchain. The Wallet address is public, but may have a number of Private Keys making up the balance.

An wealthy investor or trader who can manipulate the market.

Before the launch of an ICO, people can sign-up and register their interest to purchase, The list of these parties is called a whitelist.

White paper
Technical information of a cryptocurrency explaining the roadmap in its success.

Z is for...
Zero Confirmation Transaction
An Unconfirmed transaction.