The world of blockchains is an intimidating one, removed from our previous understanding of currencies and value. There are no papers, gold bricks, or even Abraham Lincolns in the world of cryptocurrencies. Digital markers of worth—computer processing and graphics processing—rise to the foreground of human economic relations.
But I have a computer! - you say.
Exactly, which means you may participate in the world trend of cryptocurrencies. Many cryptocurrencies are secured by blockchains, essentially an automated security system that verifies transactions are legitimate. These audits, however, require computational power, power you can provide. Miners (like yourself soon!) offer their computer's abilities to the blockchain and are paid out the mined cryptocurrency in return—simple.
So how do you get started?
This guide is for the layfolk among us, those with little technical knowledge. I will be keeping the difficulty of entering the mining community appropriate for this context. Here are some quick ways to begin mining with no technical background nor setup.
MinerGate is a secure website that allows users to mine BTC, ETH and XMR among other currencies. A self-explanatory installation and a click of a button are all that's needed to begin. Once activated, Minergate automatically uses whatever resources your computer is not, allowing the program to run without overbearing the device. Mining using Minergate allows for withdrawals after merely a few days of mining, with relatively low withdrawal limits.
2. The Golem Network
Unlike other miners, the Golem Network directly connects you to other users. Users in need of computational power are known as requestors, and those who sign up to donate computation—providers. After downloading the Golem file, you may set up a node in Terminal that will automatically look for requestors and fill orders. The benefit of such a direct linkage between provider and requestor is a far higher payout per task, some yielding up to 1 golem per. The downside, however, is that a solely user-based system requires both active requestors and providers. Without a requestor, you have no golem to mine.
These are some of the simplest and most intuitive mining applications. A user may begin mining within minutes after installation and requires no high-end PC to function. If you are looking for a quick way into mining, I recommend one of these two.