It has been a nail-biting year for people who hold Bitcoins, an open-source digital currency that has quickly gained traction in the tech community. Last June, Bitcoins were worth $5. By April 2013, they were up to $266. Then they dropped to $70 in April. They were back up to $108 by May 7. Bitcoin is volatile. We know that much. It’s also vulnerable. Mt. Gox, the biggest Bitcoin exchange (where users go to exchange Bitcoins for other currency)–was recently faced with multiple DDoS attacks , shutting down the site temporarily.
But here’s the thing about open-source currencies: they’re open to improvement. Ripple, a platform that just received funding from Google Ventures, Andreessen Horowitz, Lightspeed Venture Partners, and others, has created both an alternative to Bitcoin and a distributed currency exchange for Bitcoiners (and others) who aren’t comfortable using only Ripple’s currency, known as XRP.
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