If you are new to the crypto space, the first thing that comes to your mind is how complex the technology is. It is very complex indeed, but the internet is also very complex and still you use it. You navigate through many websites and use a lot of technologies intuitively. Some of these technologies can include IoT(Internet of Things) interactions, encrypted messengers, and torrents. The reason for this is by something called “Layers of Abstraction” in which a person doesn’t need to know the exact “science” behind technologies in order to be able to use them. Of course, each person, depending on their goals and understanding of the technology, may feel more comfortable at a certain layer. Regardless to say, understanding the technology does bring its benefits.
I will now use Tron as a playground in order to discover how this technology works. The best part is that it is free and involves no risk at all. The only thing you will need is the internet.
TRON EASE OF USE
Every cryptocurrency and every serious blockchain project must operate on a Mainnet and a Testnet(at least you would hope). The Mainnet is where magic happens. It is where all transactions occur and are recorded. Every hash, timestamp, and wallet is stored in the blockchain’s Mainnet. Now, the Testnet, as the name implies, is a dedicated net used for testing blockchain features in order to be able to detect possible errors before being applied to the mainnet. This was made for developers who had the knowledge in designing and programming blockchains. Tron, for instance, incorporates this feature. But don’t worry if you don’t understand, you really don’t have to. At the end of the article you will feel amazed on how easy it is to use a cryptocurrency.
TRON LINK WILL GUIDE US
Tron link is a Tron wallet that can be downloaded here. In the crypto space, a wallet stores your tokens. You then can access your tokens with your private key.
Once you download the TronLink wallet, make sure to save your private key somewhere safe. You can even write it down on paper and store it in a safe place. Do not save your private key on your computer as hackers or even spyware might get a hold of them. Sign in into your wallet and make sure you choose the Shasta Testnet option as shown below.
SEND AND RECEIVE TRON
On the following link for the Shasta Test Network you can ask for a free 10,000 TRX to play with. You just need to copy and paste your address from the Tron Link wallet on the input area and then click submit. You will notice that in just a few seconds, your balance will update with 10,000 new TRX tokens.
TAKING A LOOK AT THE EXPLORER
Everything in cryptocurrency is auditable and anonymity is the main objective. Every person can see another person’s wallet address, token balance, and transactions. You can go to the blockchain explorer, such as TronScan, and see every transaction on the network. Every transaction is immutable and verifiable. This is the reason why cryptocurrencies are decentralized. Explorers help us track all of these transactions, see mined blocks, check balances, and provide a lot of other helpful data. Here is the link for the Shasta Explorer.
In order to verify the existence of your wallet, you can copy and paste your public key or wallet address(NOT YOUR PRIVATE KEY!!!!) on the search bar and you can then see your balance, transfers, votes, tokens, etc. You can also try to click to another wallet address and check its transactions. And of course, you can also try to send TRX to some random wallet address to see how easy it is.
So far you have been able to play around with some TRX. At the moment, you haven’t done anything so complicated. You are also starting to understand how a blockchain works without going into the deeper layers of abstraction.
As part of the blockchain design, Tron developed a Freezing mechanism in order to obtain Power, Bandwidth, or Energy which are used for different functions on the blockchain. You can read more about it here.
Beginner’s Info: If you are not a developer, it is most likely that you will freeze TRX to obtain Bandwidth and Power. Power is used to vote for a Super Representative and Bandwidth is used for simple transactions such as sending TRX to another account. Energy is used for the execution of smart contracts such as the ones used in dapps. Here is some information about smart contracts. I’ll also give you an example. In a gambling dapp, for instance, you select a game and execute a smart contract. If the smart contract, such as a random number generator, turns out in your favor, the contract calculates the payout and sends it to your account. This is a very simple version of a smart contract. Note: Many dapps do provide the necessary energy needed to run the contracts.
On the main dashboard you can also use a unit calculator to see how much your balance is in USD or SUN. You can also check the top 10 miners, called SRs (Super Representatives). Tron Spark is one of 27 elected Tron Super Representatives. Continuing with our playground, if you click on calculators you can see that you have Energy and Bandwidth calculators. Feel free to keep playing with the test TRX as it is a great way to feel more comfortable when dealing with cryptocurrencies.
IT WAS NOT SO DIFFICULT AFTER ALL
Cryptocurrencies were developed to offer payment options that give power to normal people. Whenever you use a cryptocurrency you already own its blockchain, among the other users on the network; nobody controls your money. There’s no such thing as third parties that can limit or block your transactions. You can send any amount of money at any given time to any part of the world within seconds with almost fee-less transactions. Now that you understand this, do we really need banks or governments printing their own money? Cryptocurrencies as you saw gives you privacy, and it is auditable, fast, and reliable. Now you can share your knowledge with friends and family. You can even start accepting cryptocurrencies as a payment option. After all, crypto is here to stay.
DISCLAIMER: Every example shown in this article is using the Shasta Testnet, meaning that every transactions made works only for testing purposes. Hence, it is not real money. That will not be the case once you use the mainnet. But once you are familiar with these sample transactions, you will be much more comfortable dealing with cryptocurrencies.