Ripple For The Average Joe

Ripple is one of the most controversial cryptocurrencies out there. People seem to either hate it or love it.

However, having the second highest market cap of all cryptocurrencies, it is crucial that it is understood.

It is important to note that Ripple is a currency as well as a payment protocol.

It has similarities to the age-old Hawala system for easily transferring money between cities.

Here is a Hawala example case:

  • Johnny goes to his agent and gives him $500 in cash and a password. He also gives Sarah, who he wants to send the money to, the password as well
  • The agent tells Sarah’s agent to give $500 to anyone who knows Johnny’s password.
  • Sarah tells her agent the password and gains access to the $500.

You can think of Ripple as an upgraded, digital version of Hawala. Johnny deposits cash in his Ripple gateway and instructs it to release the money to Sarah’s Ripple gateway.

One interesting aspect about Ripple is that you can exchange any object with value as long as you find a gateway that deals with that specific object.

However, there is one problem that arises. What if Sarah’s agent doesn’t accept the item that Johnny and Sarah want to trade it?

This is where the currency aspect of Ripple comes in. All Ripple gateways have an XRP (ripple currency) price for the object/s they trade in.

Within Ripple, you could convert everything into XRP’s and then convert everything back at the end if necessary.