In a press release, the cryptocurrency/altcoin exchange Shapeshift.io has announced that it will be incorporating the digital asset Ethereum into its platform. Customers of Shapeshift can now buy or sell the digital asset’s unit of exchange, ‘ether,’ instantly using the exchange, along with Bitcoin, Litecoin, and other cryptocurrencies and digital assets. Ethereum is a blockchain-based cryptocurrency — one of many inspired by Bitcoin.
Of all the cryptocurrencies to follow Bitcoin’s example, Ethereum has been the most highly anticipated, breaking crowdfunding records in 2014 by raising over $18 million USD. Unlike Bitcoin, though, which was designed to be exclusively used as a money, the Ethereum platform is designed around the idea of giving software development a decentralized network. The result, if successful, would be to decentralize the ownership of software products, making them both censorship resistant and trustless. Augur, the first decentralized prediction market, is one of the first well-known projects to be built around the Ethereum platform. Shapeshift customers are