NXT, pronounced "next" or "N-X-T", is an example of crypto-coin or crypto-currency; other cryptocurrencies you might have heard of are bitcoin (BTC), litecoin (LTC), Dash (DASH), Monero (XMR), to name only a few. Сomputer geeks are not the only ones who are thrilled to bits with them in their wallets. Nowadays, virtually everyone is tempted by the potential of crypto coins. It has become well known that the subword of crypto in conjunction with coin/currency just emphasizes the fact that they use a plenty of cryptographic technique in order to be the digital currency and enable its transactions to have place. But what is the only king within the vast realm of cryptocurrencies? Not sure, but NXT is certainly a crown prince, that will shake up our whole life in the nearest future.
What is so good about NXT? To get answer on this let's take a look on bitcoin first. BTC is centred on the concept of decentralized, distributed blockchain - a digital ledger that being visible to public is shared across the computer network and records all confirmed bitcoin transactions. Each new block in this chain is chronologically ordered and contains allowed number of current transactions and cryptographic hash formed on the ground of the previous block content. Eventually the blokchain fork/s may arise but finally the only one will survive, namely that one on which the majority of miners were working. This gives a self-sustainable mechanism to the blockchain itself .
So far so good, but you may ask, well, blockchain is the digital ledger, but where are bitcoins, what is bitcoin itself? You may be surprised to know that bitcoin/s is/are nothing more than a special string of ones and zeros in that ledger. However to be called bitcoin/s such string must poses a number of properties and the most important one is the following: it should contain two unique digital signatures one of them for a current owner of bitcoin/s the other - for previous one, to be precise, for their wallets. Each of these two signatures is wallet's public address or public (verification) key. The private part or private (signing) key of the wallet which is mathematically related with relevant public key in btc string and proves ownership of that btc is saved in the wallet file of the person who owns the balance. If the wallet matches the private key it has with some addresses in confirmed transactions then the sum related to those addresses go to its balance and owner of the wallet has the right to spend it. He/she do it by signing the following transaction with the wallet's private key, not disclosing it, as only pertaining public key leaves his/her computer. Using that public key others can verify the transaction that is the ownership of the sum in it. The verification procedure implemented in bitcoin protocol requires the puzzle solving work that can not be done other way than trying random binary strings to be concatenated with the block under validation to find the hash that lies in the predetermined range. Such proof-of-work (PoW) scheme secures bitcoin blockchain from possible attacks and the whole processes for block validation is called mining. The difficulty of PoW increases with computational power involved. This days the level of difficulty is so high that only ASIC miners (often combined into pools) can solve the puzzle in a feasible time. That miner/pool who solve/find the given block gets a reward, currently, of 25 btc. This way bitcoins are generated
Now back to NXT. As with bitcoin NXT is also centered on the cryptographic blockchain and this one is different from that one of btc. However, unlike bitcoin the nxt network does not use PoW scheme to validate transactions, it is a Proof of Stake (PoS) system based on algorithm that validates transactions (generating corresponding block) upon an amount of active coins within the network and gives the the proportional chance to all not empty wallets to get reward of transaction fees included in that block. Such architecture does not require much computations to run thus securing power effective nodes. But the most exciting difference between NXT and bitcoin systems is that within the next the certain transactions may be marked with different names and in this way represent something else, for example, other assets. In fact. using the nxt network you can trade anything.
NXT is divisible to eight decimal places. The smallest part of NXT is called NxtQuant or NQT, that is 1 NXT =108NQT. So nxt network is capable to transact in fractional values, down to 1 NQT.
Initially one billion NXT were created in the Genesis Block, and no new NXT will be ever created. Those one billion coins were deliberately distributed among 73 backers (who invested 21 btc into NXT platform before its launch) to secure sustainability of the system. Now NXT coins are circulating in the system, moving from one owner to another by payments, purchases, voting etc..
"Whatis" will enlighten you about various aspects of NXT, it will describe how to get coins into your wallets, how to create your own coin based on NXT, how to trade various assets and many, many of HowTos that may change our whole life. So, be prepared for NXT.