Bitcoin (BTC) is the very first cryptocurrency, launched in 2009. The developer (or group of developers) are anonymous and are known simply by the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto.
Though a very primitive cryptographic chain of blocks existed since the early days of the internet, Nakamoto is credited with greatly improving on it and creating the modern version of blockchain technology, implementing it in his creation of Bitcoin.
Bitcoin and the blockchain technology it is founded on have since inspired many other blockchain-based projects and cryptocurrencies. These other cryptocurrencies are popularly known as “altcoins” (short for “alternative coins”) and many of them have gained massive followings as well. Several of these altcoins came from hard-fork splits in the original Bitcoin technology itself.
As of 2019, Bitocin is ranked first among cryptocurrencies by market capitalization.