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Start Using Bitcoin

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Guiding Principles

Step 0. See the big picture

Aim: Understand why bitcoin is for you in <10 mins

  1. Watch Bitcoin is for everyone by Hello Bitcoin.

Step 1. Get a Wallet

Aim: Make and backup a bitcoin wallet

  1. Download Samourai Wallet for Android or Blue Wallet for iOS.
  2. Make a new wallet and write down the words presented to you using pen and paper. These words act as a key to access your bitcoin.
  3. Make another copy of these words (again, using pen and paper) and put them both somewhere hidden/safe in your house.
  4. In the wallet, click receive and copy the address shown on screen, this can be done by clicking on the QR code.

Step 2. Buy some bitcoin

Aim: Get a small amount of bitcoin

Currency Exchange Service
GLOBAL Hodl Hodl
AUD Amber
AUD Bitaroo
AUD HardBlock
CAD Bull Bitcoin
CHF Relai
EUR Bitonic
EUR Relai
EUR Stackinsat
GBP CoinCorner
GBP Xsats
USD Cashapp
USD Strike
USD Swan
VND Vbtc

Congrats you now officially hold some BTC. As long as you keep your wallet backup safe nobody can steal the funds from the wallet you have created. Without these words (known as your seed words or your private key) nobody can access your bitcoin wallet.

Step 3. Why use bitcoin?

Aim: Learn why bitcoin is useful

  1. Watch Hard Money Film (30m)
  2. Read ‘Why Bitcoin’ by Wiz
  3. Read ‘The Bullish Case for Bitcoin’ by Vijay Boyapati
  4. Watch ‘Why Bitcoin Matters’ by Aleks Svetski (1h)

Step 4. What is bitcoin?

Aim: Learn what bitcoin is

  1. Read ‘What Is Bitcoin’ by Greg Walker
  2. Watch ‘Bitcoin - The Genesis’ by RT (30 mins)
  3. Watch ‘Understanding Bitcoin’ by BJ Dweck (1h 30m)

Step 5. Further Learning

Aim: Further develop your understanding of bitcoin

  1. The Bitcoin Standard (1h 40m)
  2. Intro to Bitcoin Austrian thought (1h)
  1. The Little Bitcoin Book
  2. What Has Government Done to Our Money? (PDF / Audiobook)
  3. Sovereignty through mathematics
  4. The Bitcoin Standard (Listen to the prologue)

Step 6. Better Backup

Aim: Improve your backup so you are ready in-case bitcoin goes up in price or you decide to buy more.

  1. Check the derivation path used by your wallet on and add this to your backups
  2. Make an extra backup by stamping it into metal
  3. Read the full bitcoin-intro backup guide

Step 7. Running a Node

Aim: Understand how and why bitcoiners run their own full nodes.

Note: Running a node only benefits you if you use your node to send and receive transactions.

  1. Watch Benefits of a Full Node (5m)
  2. If you only need a desktop wallet, simply install bitcoin core on a regular computer.
  3. If you use a mobile phone wallet (Samourai / Blue Wallet) you should make or buy an always-on node box.
Bitcoin-Core on a regular computer (Desktop Wallet Only)
Build a node box
Buy a node box

Step 8. Joining In

Aim: Discover how to get involved in discussions about bitcoin.

  1. Attend a local meetup
  2. Subscribe to bitcoin op-tech
  3. Join Twitter and follow bitcoiners you come across.

Step 9. Bitcoin privacy

Aim: Understand how and why to use bitcoin in a private way

  1. Read how to use Bitcoin Privately
  2. Read the bitcoin wiki page

Step 10. Bitcoin MicroPayments

Aim: Understand what the lightning network is and how you can use it.

  1. Download a non-custodial bitcoin lightning wallet
  2. Transfer some bitcoin to it (a small amount)
  3. Send bitcoin over lightning
  4. Watch The Importance of Layer Two (15m)
  5. Read LNP/BP as compared to TCP/IP (extract from Q/A About Bitcoin).

Step 11. Technical Details

Aim: Better understand how bitcoin works & the terminology

  1. Watch But How does bitcoin actually work (30m)
  2. Watch How Bitcoin Works Under the Hood (22m)

Step 12. Buying Privately

The services in Step 2 are not private (except for Azteco, which is). It is worth considering more private options for further buying.

  1. Download & Install BISQ
  2. Set local currency
  3. Look for local sellers (Select BUY BTC button on top ribbon )
  4. Buy from local seller (Select Create new offer to buy BTC with … )
  5. Withdraw bitcoin to bitcoin address from Step 1.

Note: As stated when installing BISQ, the user is responsible for using the software in compliance with local laws.