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Cryptocurrency and Blockchain Dictionary

A complete list of crypto definitions

Cryptocurrency and blockchain glossary

Commonly used terms in the world of blockchain and cryptocurrency

Terms commonly used in the world of blockchain and cryptocurrency

Race Attack

Race attack – a double spend attack on the P2P network which is only possible if the recipient of the transaction accepts unconfirmed transactions as a payment. If this is true, the attacker broadcasts a conflicting transaction to the network at the same time; in case the conflicting transaction gets more confirmations, an attack is successful and the recipient does not get paid. It is easier to carry out such an attack if the attacker has a direct connection to the victim’s node, and perhaps deposits the conflicting transaction directly to miners


Roadmap – a future plan of a cryptocurrency project with events and their respective deadlines. Usually published in marketing materials.


'Return on Investment', or ROI for short, is a ratio or percentage value that reflects the profitability or efficiency of a certain trade or investment. 

Short Position

Short position – a state the trader is in when he is selling cryptocurrency asset to buy it later. For example, if a trader sold Bitcoin in November 2017 and bought it again in January 2018, he was in short position between these two trades.

Smart Contract

A smart contract is a computer program or a transaction protocol respectively, which is intended to automatically execute, control or document respectively legally relevant events and actions according to the terms of a contract, of an agreement or of a negotiation.


Stablecoin – a type of cryptocurrencies designed to have the lowest volatility possible. For example, Tether (USDT) is a stablecoin.

Trade Volume

Trade volume – the total value of all the cryptocurrency exchanged on a specific platform in a specific time period. For example, trade volume of Binance exchange on April 25, 2019 was approximately 892 000 000 USD.

Trading Pair

Trading pair – a trade between one type of cryptocurrency and another. Allows trader to purchase one of these two currencies with the another one. For example, BTC/ETH is a trading pair. It allows the trader can buy Bitcoin with his/her Ether or Ether with his/her Bitcoin.


Transaction – a recorded transfer of some amount of cryptocurrency from one wallet to another. Every transaction is recorded in a blockchain or DAG.

Virtual Cryptocurrency Wallet

Virtual cryptocurrency wallet – a software solution containing user’s private keys. There are several types of virtual wallets: Online wallet is a cloud-based program accessible from any device with Internet connection; Desktop wallet is a computer program only accessible from the computer it is installed on; Mobile wallet is a smartphone application only accessible from the smartphone it is installed on. It usually has more limited functionality compared to the desktop wallet due to the application size restrictions.


Volatility – a value that characterizes the percentual price change of a certain cryptocurrency during a certain period of time. The more volatile a cryptocurrency is, the bigger can its percentual price change over a certain period be.


Whitepaper – an official document of a certain cryptocurrency that explains how it works. Can explain novel concepts, contain financial and technological calculations.

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