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What’s the Ethereum Blockchain?

Ethereum blockchain is a decentralized blockchain platform that enables developers to build decentralized applications (dapps) on top of it. It was created by Vitalik Buterin in 2015 and is powered by its native cryptocurrency, Ether. Unlike Bitcoin’s blockchain that is primarily used for peer-to-peer transactions, Ethereum’s blockchain offers a wider range of functionalities such as the creation of smart contracts and the development of dapps. These features make Ethereum blockchain one of the most versatile and widely adopted blockchain platforms in the world.

Understanding Ethereum

Bitcoin was the first decentralized cryptocurrency, but it wasn’t the only one. Ethereum is one of the most popular cryptocurrencies after Bitcoin, and it’s unique because of its blockchain technology. Ethereum has been around since 2015, and it was created by a programmer named Vitalik Buterin. One of the main differences between Ethereum and Bitcoin is that Ethereum has a much more extensive range of applications. Ethereum is a platform that enables developers to create and deploy decentralized applications (dApps) that run on the blockchain.

How Ethereum Works

Ethereum works by using blockchain technology to create a distributed ledger of transactions. The blockchain is a decentralized database that is maintained by a network of computers around the world. Each computer on the network has a copy of the blockchain, and they all work together to validate and record new transactions.

When a user wants to make a transaction on the Ethereum network, they must pay a fee in Ether, the cryptocurrency used on the Ethereum network. The fee goes to the miners on the network who validate and record the transaction. Once the transaction is recorded on the blockchain, it is irreversible, and it becomes a permanent part of the blockchain history.

Smart Contracts

One of the most significant features of the Ethereum blockchain is its smart contract functionality. Smart contracts are self-executing contracts with the terms of the agreement directly written into code. Smart contracts allow for the automation of complex transactions, and they eliminate the need for intermediaries, such as lawyers or banks, to facilitate agreements between parties.

Smart contracts work by executing code on the blockchain when certain conditions are met. For example, a smart contract could be created to automatically transfer funds to a seller once a buyer receives a product. The code would execute as soon as the buyer confirms receipt of the product, and the funds would be transferred automatically.

Ethereum vs. Bitcoin

Key takeaway: Ethereum is a popular cryptocurrency platform that enables the creation and deployment of decentralized applications on the blockchain. Ethereum uses blockchain technology to create a distributed ledger of transactions, and its smart contract functionality allows for the automation of complex transactions and eliminates the need for intermediaries. Ethereum has a larger block size limit than Bitcoin and is designed to be a platform for building decentralized applications, while Bitcoin is primarily used as a store of value and means of exchange. Ethereum’s applications include decentralized finance, gaming, and supply chain management.


Ethereum and Bitcoin are both cryptocurrencies that use blockchain technology to operate. Both Ethereum and Bitcoin are decentralized, meaning that they are not controlled by any one entity, such as a bank or government. Both cryptocurrencies also use a proof-of-work consensus algorithm to validate transactions on the network.


The main difference between Ethereum and Bitcoin is their intended use. While Bitcoin is primarily used as a store of value and a means of exchange, Ethereum is designed to be a platform for building decentralized applications. Ethereum also has a much larger block size limit than Bitcoin, which allows for more transactions to be processed in a shorter amount of time.

Another significant difference between Ethereum and Bitcoin is their mining algorithms. While both cryptocurrencies use a proof-of-work algorithm, Ethereum is planning to move to a proof-of-stake algorithm in the future. Proof-of-stake is a more energy-efficient algorithm that does not require miners to solve complex mathematical problems to validate transactions.

Applications of Ethereum

Decentralized Finance

Decentralized finance, also known as DeFi, is one of the most popular applications of Ethereum. DeFi refers to a financial system that is built on top of the Ethereum blockchain, and it allows for peer-to-peer transactions without the need for intermediaries. DeFi applications include decentralized exchanges, lending platforms, and stablecoins.


Another application of Ethereum is gaming. Ethereum allows for the creation of decentralized games that use blockchain technology to enable unique gameplay experiences. Some popular Ethereum-based games include CryptoKitties, Axie Infinity, and Gods Unchained.

Supply Chain Management

Ethereum can also be used for supply chain management. The blockchain technology allows for the tracking of goods and products from their origin to their final destination. This process can be automated using smart contracts, which can trigger transactions and updates to the blockchain when certain conditions are met.

FAQs: What’s the Ethereum Blockchain?

What is the Ethereum blockchain?

The Ethereum blockchain is a decentralized and open-source blockchain platform that enables the creation of smart contracts and decentralized applications (dApps). It is different from other blockchains like Bitcoin because it is intended to execute code and support the development of complex applications.

How does the Ethereum blockchain work?

The Ethereum blockchain is a distributed network of nodes that maintains a copy of the Ethereum blockchain. These nodes compete to validate and confirm new transactions and smart contract code. Once confirmed, the transaction is added to the blockchain, and the network changes to reflect the update in transaction history.

What is a smart contract?

A smart contract is a self-executing agreement or contract coded on the Ethereum blockchain. By using smart contracts, Ethereum enables developers to create decentralized applications that execute complex protocols automatically.

What are decentralized applications (dApps)?

Decentralized applications (dApps) are applications that run on a decentralized network like the Ethereum blockchain. Unlike traditional apps that run on a centralized server, dApps use the Ethereum blockchain’s decentralized and distributed infrastructure to operate. Users interact with dApps using an interface, and the underlying smart contracts on the blockchain power the app’s functionality.

What is Ethereum’s native cryptocurrency, Ether (ETH)?

Ether is the native cryptocurrency of the Ethereum blockchain. It’s used to pay for the execution of smart contracts and transactions on the network. It is also used as a store of value and traded on exchanges.

What is Ethereum’s vision for the future?

Ethereum’s vision is to become a decentralized computing infrastructure that enables anyone, anywhere, to build and deploy decentralized applications. Ethereum aims to achieve this by leveraging the blockchain’s benefits to create a more open, transparent, and secure internet. The Ethereum community is continuously working to improve the scalability, security, and functionality of the network to achieve this goal.

Updated: 27 June, 2023 — 10:13 AM

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