From airdrops to zpubs, the A to Zs of crypto - an Exodus dictionary
Crypto terms and their definitions.
In this article:
Airdrop - An airdrop refers to new coins or tokens that are deposited directly into existing crypto wallets for free. Tokens are usually given to addresses on a preexisting blockchain, such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, or Cosmos.
Altcoin - Altcoin is a portmanteau of "alternative" and "coin", and it refers to any digital currency that is not Bitcoin.
AMM - AMM stands for automated market maker. A market maker in traditional finance is simply an entity that connects buyers and sellers of an item together in order to conduct their trades. An AMM, therefore, facilitates trading via code without a human intermediary.
Aping - Investing in a new token or NFT project quickly, without doing research, based on hype. (See also FOMO.)
ATH - Acronym for All-Time High. Refers to the highest price a cryptocurrency has achieved. (See also: Moon.)
Bear - Can refer to a bear market, which is a market in which crypto is going down in price for a sustained period of time, or to a person with the desire for and/or expectation of a bear market.
BEP20 - A token standard for tokens that run on the BNB Smart Chain network. BEP20 token transactions are fuelled by BSC BNB. You can read more about BEP20 tokens here: Binance networks: BEP20 and BEP2 troubleshooting
Binance - Binance is a cryptocurrency exchange founded in 2017 by Changpeng Zhao (CZ). It is currently the largest crypto exchange in terms of daily trading volume.
Bitcoin - Bitcoin is an open-source decentralized peer-to-peer digital currency - the one that started it all. The Bitcoin white paper was published on October 31, 2008, by the pseudonymous Satoshi Nakamoto, and Bitcoin's genesis block was mined on January 3, 2009, marking the beginning of the cryptoverse.
Block - Each block is a record of crypto transactions that take place during a certain period of time, and contains a reference to the block that preceded it. You can think of a block as one page in a ledger. Multiple blocks make up a blockchain.
Block height - Block height is the number of blocks in the blockchain between the first block in the chain and the block in question.
Block size - Block size is the amount of data that is able to be contained in one block. For example, a Bitcoin block is 1 MB.
Block time - Block time refers to the amount of time it takes for one block to complete. For example, one Bitcoin block takes about 10 minutes, whereas one Ethereum block takes between 10-20 seconds. This time can be variable because when there are a greater number of transactions to be processed in the network, it takes longer.
Blockchain - A blockchain is a distributed digital ledger in a decentralized network that uses peer-to-peer consensus to validate transactions and a hashing algorithm to link them cryptographically in a chronological chain of records contained in blocks.
Block explorer - A block explorer is a search engine to view information about transactions that have taken place on the blockchain, and activity on blockchain addresses. Different cryptocurrencies have different block explorers (sometimes more than one - looking at you, Solana).
BTFD - Acronym for Buy the [email protected]#$ing Dip, enthusiastic encouragement to buy more crypto when the price goes down (rather than panic-sell).
Centralized - Controlled by a single authority or managed in one place. In crypto, centralized exchanges hold your private keys.
Cold wallet - A cold wallet is a wallet that is not connected to the internet. Examples of cold wallets include CoolWallet, KeepKey, Keystone, Ledger, Safepal, and Trezor. Trezor cold wallets can easily integrate with your Exodus wallet, giving you the best of both hot and cold storage.
DAO - Acronym for Decentralized Autonomous Organization, an entity with no central leadership. Decisions are made by proposals that are voted on by the community, organized around a specific set of rules enforced on a blockchain.
DEX - Acronym for decentralized exchange. A DEX is a peer-to-peer marketplace that allows crypto holders to trade directly without the need for a middleman or centralized authority.
dApp - Decentralized applications, or dApps, are apps that are built on a decentralized network such as Ethereum. dApps are public, open-source, and are free from control or censorship by any single authority.
DYOR - Acronym for Do Your Own Research, encouragement to perform due diligence before aping into a project.
EIP - Acronym for Ethereum Improvement Proposal, EIPs describe standards for the Ethereum platform, including core protocol specifications, client APIs, and contract standards. One well-known EIP is EIP-1559, which changed how transaction fees work on the Ethereum blockchain.
Elon Musk - The owner of a Shiba Inu named Floki.
Exchange - An exchange is an online marketplace where users can buy, sell, and trade cryptocurrency.
Fiat - Fiat currency is government-issued money that is not backed by a commodity such as gold. Most cash, including the US dollar, is fiat money, and can be printed at will by central banks (looking at you, inflation).
FOMO - Acronym for Fear Of Missing Out. In crypto, this usually means buying a coin after the price has already gone up substantially to chase further gains.
FTX - FTX is a centralized cryptocurrency exchange based in The Bahamas. It also operates FTX.US, a separate exchange available to US customers. It was founded by Sam Bankman-Fried and Gary Wang in May 2018. You can exchange through the FTX Exchange app from inside your Exodus wallet.
Gas - Gas is another term for a network or transaction fee, and it refers to the cost of a transaction on the Ethereum network. Miners set the price of gas based on supply and demand to process smart contracts and other transactions. You can check current gas prices on the Ethereum network by visiting Etherscan's Ethereum Gas Tracker.
Genesis block - The first block mined in a cryptocurrency's blockchain.
Gwei - Gwei is a denomination of Ethereum (ETH); there are one billion gwei in one ETH. Ethereum gas prices are shown in gwei.
Halving - Bitcoin halvings happen about every four years when the reward for mining a Bitcoin block is cut in half. Currently, the reward per block is 6.25 BTC. After the next halving, a block will only contain 3.125 BTC. You can follow the countdown to the next halving with CoinMarketCap's Bitcoin Halving Countdown.
HODL - Sometimes mistakenly described as an acronym for Hold On for Dear Life, actually a drunken misspelling of 'hold' on a Bitcoin forum in 2013. No one knows what happened to the girlfriend but the term hodl became a Bitcoin philosophy - a strategy of holding (rather than trading) Bitcoin in order to realize the highest possible gains. Adherents of this philosophy are known as hodlers.
Hot wallet - A hot wallet is a cryptocurrency wallet that is connected to the internet. Hot wallets allow you to send, receive, and store cryptocurrency. Exodus is a hot wallet.
Immutable - Unable to be changed. Immutability is a defining feature of blockchain technology, and the reason why once a transaction is confirmed (i.e. written to the blockchain) it cannot be altered or reversed.
JOMO - Acronym for the Joy Of Missing Out, JOMO is the elation you feel when a coin that you resisted aping into is going down in price.
KYC/AML - Acronym for Know Your Customer/Anti-Money Laundering. KYC is a component of AML that refers to companies verifying their customers' identities in order to comply with anti-money laundering regulations. As a non-custodial wallet, Exodus does not conduct KYC.
Lightning Network - The Lightning Network (LN) is a system for payments that operates as a second layer (L2) protocol for the Bitcoin (BTC) network.
Mempool - The mempool, or memory pool, is like a waiting room for unconfirmed transactions. Once a transaction is included in a block, it is removed from the mempool and will show as confirmed.
Moon - Where your favorite coin is going - a price so high it's out of this world. Can also be posed as a question, e.g. "wen moon?" Or as an imperative, e.g. "to the moon!"
NFT - NFTs, or non-fungible tokens, are units of data, such as images, music, and GIFs, that are stored on the blockchain. Non-fungible means that each NFT is unique and cannot be replaced.
No-coiner - A person who does not own any cryptocurrency because they believe, or purport to believe, that crypto has little to no value, and/or is doomed to fail.
Nonce - Nonce is used in the Ethereum network to number and label any outgoing transactions from an Ethereum address. The first transaction will always have a nonce value of 0. For example, if a transaction has the nonce value of 10, it means that it is the 11th transaction the address has sent.
Non-custodial - A non-custodial wallet allows you full and sole control over your private keys and secret recovery phrase, which also means you are responsible for the security of your assets. Exodus is a non-custodial wallet.
On-chain - On-chain refers to transactions that are confirmed and recorded on the blockchain. On-chain transactions are immutable, so they offer inherent verifiability and transparency. Possible downsides to on-chain transactions are longer processing times and higher fees.
Oracle - Blockchains typically have no means of accessing information beyond their network and databases that might be useful for more advanced functions. Oracles, then, act as a bridge between blockchains and the real world. Oracles can retrieve information from a database so that a blockchain smart contract can use that information as a condition for execution.
Phishing - Phishing is a type of scam where an attacker tries to trick a victim into revealing sensitive information. In crypto, the main targets of phishing scams are private keys and 12-word secret recovery phrases. Exodus will never ask you for your private keys or 12-word phrases.
Provenance - Provenance is the history of ownership of an NFT. This documentation enables you to verify changes in ownership information through the blockchain and aids in proving an NFT's authenticity.
QR code - A pixelated square-shaped barcode that stores data such as website URLs, phone numbers, or up to 4,000 characters of text. In crypto, it is often used as a quick way to scan an address.
REKT - An alternative spelling of wrecked, it refers to a severe financial loss, usually by making a bad trade, often a losing position that was liquidated due to high leverage.
Rug pull - A rug pull is a type of exit scam where developers promote a promising new project, then, after people invest, the developers sell all their tokens and disappear. Investors are "rugged" because they lose most, if not all of their money when the price plummets.
Satoshi Nakamoto - Satoshi Nakamoto is the pseudonymous creator of Bitcoin. Many have claimed to be Satoshi, but there is no incontrovertible evidence to identify who Satoshi was or is. The truth is out there.
Slippage - Slippage refers to the difference between a trade's expected price, and the actual price at which the trade is completed.
Stacking sats - Stacking sats refers to accumulating small amounts of Bitcoin over a long period of time, similar to dollar-cost averaging.
Taproot - An upgrade to the Bitcoin network, Taproot introduces Schnorr signatures and key aggregation, which allow for batching multiple signatures and transactions together, making it easier and faster to verify transactions. This could help scale the number of transactions that take place on the Bitcoin network, as well as improve privacy.
UTXO - An unspent transaction output, or UTXO, is the amount of crypto you have left after completing a cryptocurrency transaction. UTXO-based assets include Bitcoin, Litecoin, and Dogecoin.
Validator - A validator is responsible for verifying transactions on a blockchain. Once transactions are verified, they are written to a block. In proof-of-work (PoW) systems like Bitcoin, miners are the validators. In proof-of-stake (PoS) systems like Cosmos, stakers are the validators. If an address stakes the network’s token and participates in the network according to the rules of the protocol, it is given rewards. Staking helps secure the network by locking up value in the network in order to participate in consensus decisions.
Vitalik Buterin - A Russian-Canadian programmer who co-founded Ethereum, a blockchain platform that supports various features such as ERC20 tokens, NFTs, and dApps.
Whale - An individual or entity that holds a large amount of cryptocurrency. A Bitcoin whale owns a lot of Bitcoin, whereas a DOGE whale would make a really cute NFT.
White paper - A white paper is a document on a specific topic that presents a problem and provides a solution. When a company (or entity) launches a new cryptocurrency, they usually provide technical, financial, and commercial details in a white paper. Some famous white papers include the Ethereum white paper and the Bitcoin white paper.
Xpub - An xpub, or extended public key, allows a wallet to generate a deterministic tree of public keys. This read-only key gives viewing access to all past and future transactions, addresses, and balances from a specific wallet of a UTXO-based asset. Your xpub can't derive private keys, so it will not grant any access to your funds. All xpubs will begin with the letters ‘xpub’ followed by a long string of letters and numbers. (See also: Zpub.)
Yield farming - Yield farming, AKA liquidity mining, is a term given to crypto protocols that enable to lend your assets as liquidity in return for paid interest. Yield farming is often done by providing your crypto to a DEX in order to provide liquidity for trades on that DEX. While that DEX holds your crypto, they will pay you back with interest AKA yield.
Zk-SNARK - A zk-SNARK, or Zero-Knowledge Succinct Non-Interactive Argument of Knowledge, enables cryptographic proof that you possess information (e.g. a password) without revealing the information itself. There are privacy and security benefits to zero-knowledge proofs. For example, if a network does not have a password stored somewhere, the password cannot be stolen.
Zpub - A zpub is a type of extended public key that instructs a wallet to derive native SegWit addresses. All zpubs will begin with the letters ‘zpub’ followed by a long string of letters and numbers. (See also: Xpub)
2FA - 2FA, or two-factor authentication, is an additional layer of security requiring information that verifies the owner, and nobody else, is accessing their account. Because there are no accounts in Exodus, traditional 2FA doesn't work with Exodus. To provide additional security, we recommend pairing your Exodus wallet with a Trezor.
51% attack - A 51% attack is an attack on a blockchain by a group of miners who control more than 50% of the network's mining hash rate. This could prevent other miners from confirming new blocks, allowing the 51% attackers to earn all the rewards. It could also allow the attackers to send a transaction and then reverse it (also known as double-spending) to steal funds from the network.