Ever explored into the world of digital cryptocurrencies beyond its most popular representative, BitCoin? Let us inform you that the second biggest P2P open-source project is LiteCoin (aka LTC). It holds a range of similarities to the pioneer cryptocurrency, such as: the absence of a centralized control system; the use of a proof-of-work scheme of cryptographic nature in the processes of generating and transferring coins; the use of an extensive network of miners organized on the peer-to-peer basis. LiteCoin has managed to gain quite a bit of momentum and become a viable alternative to BTC, offering a number of improvements in comparison with the latter, as well as an enhanced algorithm of encryption. Created in 2011, LTC is based off the BTC-QT client with modifications towards improving the user interface, decreasing the time of block generation, expanding the max amount of coins, and implementing a different algorithm of hashing.
As of today, LTC proudly occupies the second position by market capitalization among cryptocurrencies. What has made it so popular? It was one of the first alternatives to BTC to emerge in the market; it was quite similar to the pioneer digital currency yet offered certain improvements. The most prominent distinctive features of the newly-introduced currency were the properties such as being Scrypt-based and ASIC-proof. While BitCoin had refused from using GPUs as the main solution for mining coins, LiteCoin re-introduced it. Things become clearer if we draw a parallel between BTC and LTC imaging the former as gold and the latter as silver.
Just like BTC, LiteCoin has given rise to a range of alternatives: a number of cryptocurrencies have been created using its concept and core code as the basis. In particular, quite a few alternatives to LTC feature ASIC-proofness. Considering the present-day powerfulness of BTC ASIC miners, it would seem unreasonable to release an alternative based on SHA-256 rather than LTC and Scrypt. Worth noting are also a few other alternatives to LTC: WorldCoin (aka WDC), FeatherCoin (aka FTC), LottoCoin (aka LOT), etc. A bunch of them have been emerging lately; however, most fail to gain popularity and go west quickly.