List of popular alternative coins

By Reuben (BolehVPN)

Quick summary of the top nine cryptocurrencies according to present market capital. Feel free to contact me in case of changes. You may comment it if you have spotted on few potential one for Season III. Try to segregate scams coin from good one. Thank you.

1. Bitcoin (6.3 bil market cap) The first decentralised cryptocurrency. Most merchant adoption and public awareness. Currently going through some disagreements on how to upgrade it to handle increased transaction load.

2. Ethereum (757 mil market cap) Very hot new crypto. Doesn't seek to be a currency but as a decentralised platform for applications to run. For e.g. self executing contracts that once placed in, will auto perform it upon conditions being met free from third party interference. Recently enjoyed a huge boost in price.

3. Ripple (271 mil) More aimed at banks/financial institutions and payment networks as a settlement infrastructure technology. This allows banks to settle with each other quickly at low cost reducing transaction fees.

4. Litecoin (145 mil) Used to be the no.2 cryptocurrency. Was the first altcoin that hoped to make transaction times faster and for mining to be decentralized. However these improvements have been replaced by better solutions in other coins. Development has slowed a lot and has not developed any innovative features in a while. However, still a lot of people invested in it which keeps it alive.

5. MaidSafe (45 mil): Recently gained a lot in price. Intends to replace centralized datacenters by building a fully decentralized data and communication network. That means people who participate in MaidSafe allow part of their computers to be used by other people in the network be it computing power/disk space. For e.g. it's like Dropbox except that instead of being held in Dropbox centres, your data is spread throughout the network by everyone who uses MaidSafe too in a safe and encrypted way.

6. Dash (26.6 mil): Aims to compete directly with Bitcoin as a digital curency by solving all major problems that Bitcoin has. This means instant transactions, anonymous transactions and eventually decentralized payment processors and easy to use APIs. Has a self governance model that allows stake holders to vote on the future and direction of Dash (unlike Bitcoin which relies on miners and core devs). One of the few currencies that derives its funding from its own blockchain.

7. Dogecoin (23.6 mil): Started out as a joke coin and has almost the same features as Litecoin. Fun and wide community support but little in the way of revolutionary features. One of the earlier cryptocurrencies.

8. Factom (19.7 mil): Aims to be the premier solution for records management and notarial services. For e.g. in medical records, supply chain management, voting systems, property titles. It creates an immutable audit trail. Whereas Bitcoin's blockchain stores transactions, Factom is designed to store any data.

9. Monero (11.6 mil): Monero focuses on privacy with privacy at its very core. Unlike other blockchains which are transparent and publicly viewable, Monero's blockchain is opaque meaning people cannot trace your payments.