Last Updated on October 1, 2021
A cryptocurrency is a digital or virtual currency that is secured by cryptography, which makes it nearly impossible to counterfeit or double-spend. Typically it does not exist in physical form (like paper money) and is also typically not issued by a central authority. Instead, there’s decentralized control.
Cryptocurrencies have not only had an impact on the world’s expectations surrounding money. They’ve also continued to evolve since the first Bitcoin block was mined back in 2009. Since then, thousands of unique cryptocurrencies have appeared.
Of these, Bitcoin remains the most popular. Some economists, including several Nobel laureates, have characterized it as a speculative bubble. But Bitcoin could be on the verge of adoption by professional investors which would send its price higher.
Given that cryptocurrencies could be on the verge of a new era, it’s a good time to look at software that lets you monitor their prices.
cointop is a fast and lightweight interactive terminal based UI application for tracking and monitoring cryptocurrency coin stats in real-time. It’s written in Go, retrieves data from CoinGecko, and APIs are supported for CoinMarketCap and CoinGecko.
There’s a number of ways of installing cointop, in part dependent on what Linux distro you’re using.
For Arch and Manjaro users, there’s a package for cointop in the Arch User Repository. But you don’t really anything other than copy the source code.
$ go get github.com/miguelmota/cointop
This command transfers the cointop script into ~/go/bin. You’ll need that directory in your $PATH variable, or you can move the file into a directory that’s already in your $PATH.
There’s support for cross-platform packages — Flatpak and Snap are available, but it’s easier just to install the program via Go.
The first time you run cointop, the program creates a config file stored at
This file is in TOML format, a file format for configuration files. It’s intended to be easy to read and write due to obvious semantics which aim to be “minimal”, and is designed to map unambiguously to a dictionary.