The world of cryptocurrency is growing at an incredibly accelerated rate. From Bitcoin’s inception in 2009 to today, not just the valuation of the token has grown by massive proportions – the technology behind Bitcoin, its impact on world financial markets, and the Bitcoin blockchain ledger itself has undergone massive amounts of change. On top of that, the number of other digital currencies has exploded in the wake of Bitcoin’s incredible popularity. As a result, it can be exceedingly difficult to keep track of the Bitcoin world – especially when it comes to the token itself.
However, there are plenty of ways to keep tabs on not just your Bitcoin investment but the underlying technologies that the entire Bitcoin environment is built upon. The amount of data you seek is up to you – whether you’re looking for ways to explore the Bitcoin blockchain ledger directly, resources to track specific network nodes, or the ability to peruse network statistics and plot trends, we’ve got you covered. Here’s a list of some of the best monitoring websites to keep you in the loop when it comes to the digital currency of record.
Types Of Monitoring Websites
Before we get started, we need to have a word on the differing methods for keeping tabs on the world of Bitcoin. Monitoring the Bitcoin blockchain can be a daunting task at first, but it’s easier if you know what you’re looking for and where to find it. Focusing your search to monitoring sites that are going to give you the exact data you want will save you time and effort.
Your task is, thankfully, made easier by specialization. There are several different types of monitoring sites, each of which provides unique capabilities, but they typically fall into three general classifications. Understanding each of these types, briefly summarized below, will streamline the process when it comes to finding the Bitcoin data you need.
Blockchain explorer sites, for example, are excellent tools because they can provide tools to identify each and every transaction that’s ever happened since a particular cryptocurrency debuted. As the Bitcoin environment has flourished and grown, the number of websites that let you explore the Bitcoin ledger has grown in turn.
Plotting tools and network statistics charts are less concerned with providing you with access to each and every transaction on a blockchain. Instead, they provide high levels of visualization to show you the ups and downs of a blockchain. This isn’t just for valuation, either – you can see the network’s bandwidth usage and other, similar data.
Node counters, meanwhile, are an important tool for analyzing the infrastructure of an entire blockchain network. Nodes are integral in providing networking pathways for the Bitcoin network, and node counters provide detailed data on how many nodes are active in the network, which type of node and what facet of the blockchain they’re supporting, and other highly crunchy details.
One of the oldest and most venerable blockchain explorer out there, Blockchain.info is a fantastic resource if you want to examine each and every transaction on the network. The site allows users to view transaction modifiers and contents of a bitcoin address, provide you data on the fees paid with every transaction, the number of confirmations for each transaction, or even the block height for a specific transaction.
Another excellent way to explore the blockchain is the Open Exploration Tool, or OXT. While it does what any other blockchain explorer does – display transactions on the network as they occur – OXT also has a number of plotting and charting tools for those interested in analyzing different behavior types. The platform even offers scatter plots in order to provide unique perspectives on BTC address and transaction behaviors, and also includes charts covering scripts, transactions, fees, and other data.
Plotting Tools And Network Statistics
Named after the near-mythical “creator” of Bitcoin, Statoshi.info boasts a ton of real-time statistics for the Bitcoin network. Mempool data, system metrics, fee estimates, bandwidth usage, and node counts can all be accessed through individual dashboards, and each of these dashboard displays provide a number of analysis charts and how the protocol and the network behaves.
Yet another charting website – one, that like Satoshi.info, has been around for a long time – Bitcoin Wisdom is most well known for its price charts. A number of exchanges are listed on these charts, including but not limited to Bitfinex, Kraken, BTCC, and Bitstamp, but there’s more than just price data available – the site also provides statistics such as past and present hashrates and network difficulty.
If you’re looking for statistical network data for Bitcoin, Tradeblock is another great choice. With the ability to display both current and historical Bitcoin statistics, the site has a comprehensive selection of graphical charts from which to choose. You can have Tradeblock display network diagrams like the transaction count, blocks mined, and mempool count just to name a few. As an added bonus, the platform also provides monitoring data for Ethereum, providing paths for anyone interested in exploring that blockchain as well.
With a tagline of “follow the Bitcoin,” Blockseer focuses heavily on visualization tools as a blockchain explorer. Visual diagrams illuminate the origins of Bitcoin and how it gets routed through the blockchain from one individual address to another for each transaction.
Node Counter provides a graphical setting for Bitcoin node analysis. Covering not just Bitcoin Classic but nodes running Bitcoin Core, XT, and Unlimited, Node Counter and its table graphs illustrate not just the network’s various nodes but also pools that signal block size proposals and alternate Bitcoin clients. Not a fan of table graphs? Node Counter can show you the same data in pie chart or line graph as well.
Another well-known site for node tracking, Bitnodes has the ability to show a number of different graphs and charts of network node activity. Bitnodes can either show you a glimpse of how the network exists currently or provide you data on a specific node’s status through its integrated search engine. Similar to Node Counter, Bitnodes will also display not just Classic nodes but XT, Core, and BU nodes as well.
Coin Dance, the last node counter on our list, can provide users with a number of charts and summaries across the entire Bitcoin network. Able to display a number of different node types like XT and Core in a variety of different charts, Coin Dance goes one step further by delivering charts on how the political winds are blowing when it comes to Emergent Consensus and Segregated Witness support from high-profile movers and shakers.
Different Methods, Same Results
Careful analysis of any cryptocurrency’s blockchain is a must for digital asset enthusiasts or anyone who’s interested in investing in the currency. This goes double for Bitcoin, as it’s the flagship cryptocurrency that started it all – and the one that is most likely to go through the most volatile price fluctuations as the network continues to grow.
Hardforks, new technologies, and other events in the future will constantly change the playing field for Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, so the more methods we have at our disposal to analyze and interpret data from blockchain ledgers, the better informed we can be as to how the market will move and adapts.
Diversity here is key, as is demonstrated by the above list of Bitcoin monitoring websites. None of these monitoring websites goes about its job the same way. Some may be more well-suited than others when it comes to visualizing certain types of data, but in the end, they all do the same thing: they lay the world of Bitcoin bare, making it easier than ever to keep track of the blockchain and the market.