Ethereum is the second-largest cryptocurrency platform by market capitalization, behind Bitcoin. It is a decentralized open source blockchain featuring smart contract functionality. Ether (ETH) is the cryptocurrency generated by Ethereum miners as a reward for computations performed to secure and add blocks to the blockchain. Ethereum provides a decentralized replicated virtual machine, called the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM), which can execute scripts using an international network of public nodes. Ethereum was proposed in late 2013 by Vitalik Buterin, a cryptocurrency researcher and programmer. Development was funded by an online crowdsale that took place between July and August 2014. The system then went live on 30 July 2015, with 72 million coins minted. Ethereum uses an accounting system where values in Wei (the smallest denomination of 1 Ether, 1 ETH = 1018 Wei) are debited from accounts and credited to another, as opposed to Bitcoin’s UTXO system, which is more analogous to spending cash and receiving change in return.
Original author(s) – Vitalik Buterin, Gavin Wood
Programming language of implementation – C++, Go
Initial release – 30 July 2015
Development status – Active
Website – ethereum.org