The Age of Cryptocurrency Book Summary - The Age of Cryptocurrency Book explained in key points
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The Age of Cryptocurrency summary

Paul Vigna and Michael J. Casey

How Bitcoin and Digital Money Are Challenging the Global Economic Order

4.2 (338 ratings)
16 mins

Brief summary

The Age of Cryptocurrency by Paul Vigna and Michael J. Casey gives a comprehensive overview of bitcoin and blockchain technology, exploring the potential applications and implications of this new digital currency.

Table of Contents

    The Age of Cryptocurrency
    Summary of 7 key ideas

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    Money has value when it’s based on a system of trust.

    What is money, exactly? It’s not the bills in your wallet. Those bills don’t have any inherent value – they’re just bits of paper. So why can you buy goods and services with them?

    For money to have value, there needs to be a shared agreement on its use as a medium of exchange.

    In money’s earliest days, gold or silver was often used to make coins. These coins were different from our modern bills, because gold and silver have intrinsic value. However, there was only one reason why these coins functioned as money: the people using them valued gold and silver, and agreed they could be used to buy things.

    If you traded with a culture that didn’t value gold or silver, your coins were worthless. Cultures don’t always value the same things.

    The Micronesian island of Yap, for example, had a peculiar currency system that puzzled early visitors from Europe. They used huge stone wheels called fei as currency. These stones were so heavy that they often remained with the previous owner after an exchange.

    The system worked because the Yapese agreed that the ownership (or partial ownership) of fei could be used to settle debts.

    A society needs some kind of trust in its money to have a controlled supply of currency. If just anyone could create new money, money would lose its value. There needs to be a limited amount of it for the system to work.

    In the 1920s, the Weimar Republic learned this the hard way. Germany had tremendous debt following the Versailles Treaty and tried to pay it by printing more and more bills. The value of the bills became so low that people began using them as wallpaper because it was cheaper than buying actual wallpaper. This hyperinflation caused the economy to collapse, and people lost their faith in the monetary system.

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    What is The Age of Cryptocurrency about?

    The Age of Cryptocurrency gives an overview of the history and nature of Bitcoin. It explores the definition of “money” and explains the dramatic impacts that cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin will have on our economy and the world at large.

    The Age of Cryptocurrency Review

    The Age of Cryptocurrency (2015) explores the rise of digital currencies and their potential impact on the global economy. Here's why this book is worth your time:

    • It provides a comprehensive overview of the history, technology, and societal implications of cryptocurrencies, making it a must-read for anyone interested in this rapidly evolving field.
    • Written by two Wall Street Journal reporters, the book offers insightful analysis and interviews with key players in the crypto world, bringing credibility and depth to the topic.
    • With its accessible language and clear explanations, the book makes complex concepts easy to understand, ensuring that readers won't find it boring or overwhelming.

    Best quote from The Age of Cryptocurrency

    The eye has never seen, nor the hand touched a dollar – Alfred Mitchell Innes.

    —Paul Vigna and Michael J. Casey
    example alt text

    Who should read The Age of Cryptocurrency?

    • Anyone who wants to know how Bitcoins work
    • Anyone curious about the future of money

    About the Author

    Paul Vigna and Michael J. Casey are both journalists at the Wall Street Journal. Vigna is also an anchor on MoneyBeat, and Casey is the author of Che’s Afterlife and The Unfair Trade. Casey is also a regular commentator on the BBC.

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    The Age of Cryptocurrency FAQs 

    What is the main message of The Age of Cryptocurrency?

    The main message of The Age of Cryptocurrency is to explore the rise of digital currency and its potential impact on the world.

    How long does it take to read The Age of Cryptocurrency?

    The reading time for The Age of Cryptocurrency varies depending on the reader, but it typically takes several hours. The Blinkist summary can be read in just 15 minutes.

    Is The Age of Cryptocurrency a good book? Is it worth reading?

    The Age of Cryptocurrency is worth reading as it offers an insightful exploration of the world of digital currency and its implications for the future.

    Who is the author of The Age of Cryptocurrency?

    The authors of The Age of Cryptocurrency are Paul Vigna and Michael J. Casey.

    What to read after The Age of Cryptocurrency?

    If you're wondering what to read next after The Age of Cryptocurrency, here are some recommendations we suggest:
    • Cryptoassets by Chris Burniske and Jack Tatar
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    • Blockchain Revolution by Don Tapscott and Alex Tapscott
    • Life After Google by George Gilder
    • The Bitcoin Standard by Saifedean Ammous
    • Atomic Habits by James Clear
    • How Not to Age by Michael Greger
    • Crypto Wars by Erica Stanford
    • 2030 by Mauro F. Guillén