In the cryptocurrency world, every time a transaction takes place, it is connected to a blockchain – a distributed ledger that makes information available worldwide in real time. This does not mean that a user or investor receives an automatic update on every successful trade. It’s more like the data is stored and updated on the digital ledger, but anyone who wants to check the details should look for it. But how do you do that? This is done using tools that work like a sort of “Google” for cryptocurrency.
What about cross-platform data? Which means if a Bitcoin blockchain user wants to verify the details of a transaction related to, say, the Ethereum blockchain, how to do it? It can also be done by the same process. These tools are called blockchain explorers. Most of them provide services for more than one blockchain.
What are blockchain explorers?
Simply put, a blockchain explorer is a type of software that extracts data from a blockchain and creates a database for users to search for particular information from the available resource. They allow users to view details related to various cryptocurrency transactions, including transaction amount, source and destination of transfers, and transaction status.
- A user can provide searchable terms and the explorer will display the results in tabular form of all matching transactions.
- A blockchain explorer allows you to explore data from recently extracted blocks or transactions. They also allow a user to do the following:
- Explore the transaction history of any wallet address, improving transparency on a blockchain.
- The latest transactions in a blockchain and the amounts traded.
- Explore receiving addresses and edit addresses. During a transaction, a specified amount is sent to the intended address and the remainder of the fund in the sending address is sent to a “change” address. The change is not available to spend until the transaction is confirmed on the blockchain network.
- Discover the biggest deal of the day. The whale alert [https://whale-alert.io/] website is one example.
- Explore the status of mempool. The mempool is where all valid transactions wait to be confirmed by the network. This gives details of unconfirmed transactions.
- Help users see fees paid for transactions, blockchain difficulty, hash rate, and other data.
Why use a blockchain explorer?
A blockchain wallet provides data but it is limited in detail and scope. An explorer, on the other hand, can provide data relating to transactions made on all the wallets of a blockchain. One of the main benefits of using explorers is that they help maintain transparency.
Explorers allow users to check the balance and spending on smart contract addresses, to verify if a wallet address is valid for a blockchain before sending crypto coins to it. They also help verify if the transaction reached the intended recipient and see what went wrong if the transaction did not go through. Explorers also give information about the cost of a transaction. As research tools, explorers help users make important decisions about transactions and investments.
Examples of blockchain explorer
One of the earliest blockchain explorers is blockexplorer.com. Several of these tools have since been developed. Some of them are blockchain.com – now blockchain.org – with blockchair, tokenview, and etherscan. Most of the blockchain explorers available cover a majority of blockchains like Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Cardano.
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