Bitcoin is an open computer network that enables the keeping of a shared ledger that tracks, among other things, a new payment system. From a user perspective, Bitcoin is just a mobile app that enables cash for the internet. Behind the scenes, though, the Bitcoin network is sharing a ledger called the "block chain". This ledger contains every transaction ever processed, allowing a user's computer to verify the validity of each transaction. The authenticity of each transaction is protected by digital signatures corresponding to the sending addresses. In addition, anyone can process transactions using the computing power of specialized hardware and earn a reward in bitcoins for this service. This is often called "mining".
No. Bitcoin is an open network, like the internet. Just as some software providers, like Amazon or Google, build tools that help people use the internet, Blockchain builds tools that help people use Bitcoin. Blockchain (the company) happens to share a name with the name of the Bitcoin ledger (the Bitcoin block chain).
Just as nobody owns the technologies behind email (SMTP, POP3, etc), nobody owns the technology behind Bitcoin. Bitcoin is a free and open source software project that many people all around the world contribute to developing.
Blockchain provides an Application Program Interface (API) that permits other developers’ software to communicate directly with the Bitcoin network. Blockchain also provides a block chain explorer tool and charts that provides information about the Bitcoin network.
There is no upper limit to the number of addresses that a Blockchain – or any other industry standard piece of wallet software – can hold.
You should consider using our block chain explorer tool. It will enable you to view details like transaction size, time and the approximate location of the node that relayed the transaction. You can even use our visualization tool to visualize transaction inputs and outputs to trace the flow of certain funds.
Our philosophy is to make as much information public as we reasonably can. This concept drives nearly all aspects of our business: All our wallets and APIs write directly to the publicly-available Bitcoin block chain. Our explorer tool makes it easy for the public to read and understand the information on the Bitcoin block chain. Even our code is open source and publicly-available at our GitHub repository.