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  • farzad farboodi

BLOCKCHAIN GLOSSARY OF TERMS: 139 BLOCKCHAIN TERMS AND THEIR DEFINITION

Dive into the world of blockchain and cryptocurrency with our easy-to-understand glossary. Whether you're new to the scene or a seasoned explorer, we break down complex terms clearly and concisely.

Discover the evolution of blockchain from its early days to today's cutting-edge technologies. Explore key concepts like smart contracts, consensus mechanisms, and decentralized finance, all simplified for your understanding.


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M N P Q R S T U V W X Z


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A


Address

Your digital identity in the blockchain world – think of it as your virtual home.


Altcoin

Any cryptocurrency other than Bitcoin.


Application-specific integrated Circuit (ASIC)

The powerhouse of mining – specialized hardware designed for peak blockchain performance.


B


Bitcoin (BTC)

Digital currency that enables peer-to-peer transactions without the need for intermediaries like banks.


Block

A data package containing transaction information. Blocks form the basis of blockchain technology.


Block, Canonical

A universally agreed-upon version of a block in a blockchain, ensuring consistency across the network.


Block, Genesis

The first block in a blockchain, marking its inception.


Blockchain

A decentralized, secure digital ledger that records transactions across a network of computers.


Blockchain 1.0

The pioneer era – where it all began, introducing digital currencies like Bitcoin.


Blockchain 2.0

Smart contracts take the stage – self-executing agreements bringing automation to the blockchain


Blockchain 3.0

The future unfolds – advanced techs like Web-of-Trust and cross-chain capabilities redefine what's possible.


Block Depth

The number of blocks preceding a specific block in a blockchain.


Block Explorer

Online tool to view and track transactions on a blockchain.


Block Height

The position of a block in a blockchain indicates the number of blocks preceding it.


Block Reward

Cryptocurrency is given to miners for successfully adding a new block to the blockchain.


Banking Secrecy Act (BSA)

U.S. law requires financial institutions to assist government agencies in detecting and preventing money laundering.


Byzantine Fault Tolerance

System's ability to function securely even if some participants act maliciously or fail.



C


Certificate Authority (CA)

Entity that issues digital certificates, validating the ownership of public keys.


Closed Source

Software whose source code is not freely available, limiting user modifications.


Coin

Digital or physical currency used in transactions.


Coin, Stable

Cryptocurrency designed to maintain a stable value, often pegged to traditional currencies.


Coinbase (Company)

Cryptocurrency exchange and platform for buying, selling, and storing digital assets.


Coinbase (Mining)

The first transaction in a new block, rewarding miners with newly created coins.


Command-Line Interface (CLI)

Text-based user interface to interact with software through commands.


Confirmation

Approval of a cryptocurrency transaction by miners, adding it to the blockchain


Consensus

Unanimous agreement among network participants on the validity of transactions.


Consortium

Group of organizations working together on a blockchain project.


Cryptocurrency

Digital or virtual currency is secured by cryptography, enabling secure transactions.


Cryptography

Techniques for secure communication, typically involve encoding and decoding information.


Currency

Medium of exchange for goods and services.



D


DApp (Decentralized Application)

An application that operates on a decentralized network, avoiding central points of control.


Decentralization

Distribution of control across a network, reducing reliance on central authorities.


Decentralized Autonomous Organization (DAO)

Organizations run by smart contracts without centralized control.


Decentralized Finance (DeFi)

Financial services are built on blockchain technology, aiming for inclusivity and transparency.


Directed Acyclic Graph (DAG)

Alternative to the blockchain, arranging transactions in a graph without cycles.


Double Spend Attack

Attempt to use the same cryptocurrency for multiple transactions, exploiting its digital nature.


E


EOSIO

The blockchain protocol is designed for decentralized applications.


Ether (ETH)

Cryptocurrency used on the Ethereum blockchain.


Ethereum

Blockchain platform supporting smart contracts and decentralized applications.


Etherscan

Online tool for exploring and analyzing the Ethereum blockchain.


Ethereum Enterprise Alliance (EEA)

Consortium of organizations supporting Ethereum for enterprise use.


Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM)

Runtime environment for executing smart contracts on the Ethereum network.


eWASM

Ethereum's planned upgrade to use the WebAssembly virtual machine for improved performance.


Exchange

A platform for buying and selling cryptocurrencies.


Exchange, Decentralized

Cryptocurrency exchange operating without a central authority.


F


Fiat

Traditional currencies are issued by governments, not backed by a physical commodity.


Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN)

U.S. agency combating financial crimes, including money laundering.


Fork

Divergence in a blockchain's protocol creates two separate chains.


Fork, Hard

Irreversible split in a blockchain, often due to significant protocol changes.


Fork, Soft

Temporary divergence in a blockchain, resolved without creating a new chain.



G


Gas

Unit measuring computational effort in Ethereum transactions.


Gas Price

Amount paid to execute operations on the Ethereum network.


Gossip Protocol

Communication method where nodes share information with neighbors.


Graphical User Interface (GUI)

Visual interface for interacting with software.


H


Hash

Output of a hash function, unique to the input data.


Hash Collision

Occurs when two different inputs produce the same hash output.


Hashgraph

Distributed ledger technology utilizing directed acyclic graphs for consensus.


Hashrate

The speed at which a miner solves a mathematical problem in cryptocurrency mining.


Hash Function

Algorithm generating fixed-size output (hash) from variable-size input.


Hexadecimal Notation

Base-16 numerical system, often used in computing.


Hyperledger

Open-source blockchain project for cross-industry collaboration.


I


Initial Coin Offering (ICO)

Fundraising method where new cryptocurrency is sold to investors.


Initial Token Offering (ITO)

Early offering of tokens before a blockchain project's launch.


Immutability

Unchangeable nature of data recorded on a blockchain.


J


Java Virtual Machine (JVM)

Software for running Java applications.


JavaScript Object Notation (JSON)

Lightweight data interchange format.


K


Key Pair

Pair of cryptographic keys (public and private) for secure communication.


KYC (Know Your Customer)

Process for verifying customer identities to prevent fraud.



L


Lamport Signature

Cryptographic digital signature scheme.


Layer 2 Scaling Solutions

Technologies addressing scalability issues by processing transactions off the main blockchain.


Ledger

Record of financial transactions.


Lightning Network

Off-chain scaling solution for faster and cheaper Bitcoin transactions.


Liquidity

Ease with which an asset can be bought or sold without affecting its price.


Litecoin (LTC)

Peer-to-peer cryptocurrency, similar to Bitcoin.


M


MAINNET

The primary blockchain network is where real value transactions occur.


MERKLE PROOF

Verification method using a Merkle tree structure.


MERKLE TREE

Hierarchical data structure is used in blockchain to organize and verify data.


MERKLE ROOT

A cryptographic hash of all transaction hashes in a Merkle tree.


MINECRAFT

Video game unrelated to blockchain technology.


METAMASK

Software wallet for the Ethereum blockchain.


MINER

Participants in a blockchain network validate and add new blocks.


MINER, CPU

Miner using the central processor for block validation.


MINER, GPU

Miner using the graphics processor for block validation.


MINER, ASIC

Miner using specialized hardware (Application-Specific Integrated Circuit) for block validation


MINING

Process of validating transactions and adding them to a blockchain.


MINING POOL

Group of miners combining computational power to increase the chances of successfully mining a block.


MONERO (XMR)

Privacy-focused cryptocurrency.


MONEY TRANSMITTING

Process of transferring money between parties.


N


NETWORK

System of interconnected nodes or computers.


NODE

Individual computer participating in a blockchain network


NODE, FULL

Node storing the entire blockchain's transaction history.


NODE, LIGHT

Node with a partial copy of the blockchain, relying on full nodes for information.



O


OPCODE

Operation code specifying operations in blockchain scripts.


OPEN SOURCE

Software with a publicly available source code for collaborative development.


ORACLE (COMPANY)

Software and cloud services provider.


ORACLE (SERVICE)

Third-party provider supplying real-world data to smart contracts.


P


PEER-TO-PEER (P2P)

Direct interaction between parties without intermediaries.


PRIVATE KEY

Confidential cryptographic key granting access to cryptocurrency holdings.


PRIVATE KEY INFRASTRUCTURE (PKI)

Set of protocols securing communication using public and private keys.


PROOF-OF-LIQUIDITY

Consensus mechanism validating transactions based on available liquidity.


PROOF-OF-STAKE (POS)

Consensus algorithm where participants with more cryptocurrency have increased chances of creating blocks.


PROOF-OF-STAKE, DELEGATED (DPOS)

Variant of POS where participants vote for delegates to create new blocks.


PROOF-OF-WORK (POW)

Consensus algorithm requiring computational work to validate transactions and create new blocks.


PROOF-OF-WORK, DELEGATED (DPOW)

Hybrid consensus algorithm combining POW and another method.


PUBLIC KEY

Cryptographic key shared publicly for receiving encrypted messages.


R


RING SIGNATURE

Digital signature protecting the anonymity of transaction signers.


RIPPLE

Digital payment protocol and cryptocurrency.


S


SCALABILITY

Ability of a blockchain to handle increasing transaction volume.


SCATTER

EOS blockchain wallet and identity management solution.


SECURE HASH ALGORITHM (SHA)

Cryptographic hash function generating fixed-size output.


SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION (SEC)

U.S. regulatory body overseeing securities markets.


SECURITY TOKEN OFFERING (STO)

Fundraising method using blockchain-based securities.


SHA256

Specific implementation of the SHA algorithm used in Bitcoin mining.


SIMPLE AGREEMENT FOR FUTURE TOKENS (SAFT)

Investment contract for future delivery of tokens.


SKYCOIN

Cryptocurrency focused on privacy, security, and ecosystem sustainability.


SOLIDITY

Programming language for creating smart contracts on the Ethereum platform.


SMART CONTRACT

Self-executing contract with the terms of the agreement directly written into code.


STATE MACHINE

Conceptual model for representing the sequences of states an object goes through.


T


TANGLE

Directed acyclic graph used in the IOTA cryptocurrency.


TESTNET

Blockchain environment for testing without using real assets.


TOKEN

Digital or physical representation of value on a blockchain.


TOKEN, NON-FUNGIBLE (NFT)

Unique digital assets on a blockchain, are not interchangeable.


TOKEN, SECURITY

Blockchain-based asset representing ownership in an investment.


TOKEN, STABLE

Cryptocurrency is designed to maintain a stable value, often pegged to traditional currencies.


TOKEN, UTILITY

Cryptocurrency grants access to a specific blockchain application.


TOKENIZATION

Process of converting rights to an asset into a digital token.


TOTAL-COMPLETE

Term not recognized in the blockchain context; may be unrelated or misspecified.


TRANSACTION

Transfer of cryptocurrency between participants on a blockchain.


TRANSACTION FEE

Amount paid for processing a cryptocurrency transaction.


TRANSACTION POOL

Collection of unconfirmed transactions waiting to be added to a block.


TRUSTLESS

A system where parties can interact without needing to trust each other.


TURING-COMPLETE

System or language capable of simulating a Turing machine.


TURING-MACHINE

Theoretical computing device defining the limits of computability.



U


UNSPENT TRANSACTION OUTPUT (UTXO)

Unspent cryptocurrency in a transaction waiting to be used as an input.


V


VIRTUAL MACHINE (VM)

Software environment simulating a physical computer.


VYPER

Python-based programming language for Ethereum smart contracts.


W


WALLET

Digital tool for storing and managing cryptocurrency.


WALLET, MULTISIGNATURE

Wallet requires multiple private keys to authorize a transaction.


WEB ASSEMBLY (WASM)

Binary instruction format enabling high-performance execution on

web browsers.


Z


ZERO-KNOWLEDGE (ZK) PROOF

Cryptographic method proving the authenticity of information without revealing the information itself.


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