Everybody is talking about cryptocurrencies these days, but very few actually understand the concept and the technology that underpins digital money. The latest craze in this space is a game called CryptoKitties which has players spending insane amounts of money on…well, virtual cats. According to some estimates, more than 6,000 people are trading in electronic cats, with the total transaction volume exceeding $7 million as of last week. And these are figures for a game that debuted as recently as November 28!
CryptoKitties is the creation of Axiom Zen and runs on the Ethereum platform. Ethereum, the second-most popular cryptocurrency after Bitcoin, is having a bit of an infrastructure problem because the kitty mania is putting a severe strain on its network. The rabid interest in CryptoKitties has led to a spike in traffic, accounting for more than 11% of the total at present. And some of the cartoon-like felines are changing hands for eye-popping amounts, the record belonging to one that sold for the digital equivalent of over $117,000.