So Bitcoin and its derivatives are essentially a consumer created form of currency independent of banks. Money, as a unit of trade, has no intrinsic value in it of itself other than what believe it holds. Bitcoin can be traded for other forms of currency, or goods and services by those who accept it. Because it's not tied to a bank or government, it's not subject to the same kinds of regulations. It is "mined" by solving complex math problems, usually via farming computer banks with high quality GPUs. In addtion, Bitcoin is difficult to crack because embedded in the currency itself is a ledger displaying whether or not it has been used. That's how I understand things as a moderate computer user.
It's also made people millionaires overnight. If you had bought $300 worth of bitcoin when it was traded for $1 per coin, that would have been worth 6 million at the heigth of its value (approximately 20k).
So to make a long story short, what implications does this have on the larger economy? Is Bitcoin and its ilk really the wave of the future or just a bubble?