By now, everyone's heard about the meteoric rise of Bitcoin. The cryptocurrency smashed a record-breaking US$8,200 on November 20, with many predicting its price will continue to increase.

But Bitcoin is far from the only cryptocurrency, and some would argue that it's not the one with the most promise.

Ethereum is currently the second most valuable cryptocurrency on the market just two years after its launch, and in 2018 it's set to become even more talked about.

Ethereum is similar to Bitcoin in the sense that they're both open-source platforms based on blockchain technology.

Both cut out the middle man (AKA the banks) in financial transactions, which is why cryptocurrencies have the potential to be so destabilising.

But while Bitcoin is limited to using blockchain technology for Bitcoin payments, Ethereum can be used to build decentralised computational platforms.

Ethereum's currency, the ether, also runs on sophisticated "smart contracts" which uses an if:then system, which means it can only be traded if certain conditions are met.

So it's no surprise then that over the past two years the value of the ether has already risen to more than US$360 at the time of publishing. And there are predictions its value will increase steadily in 2018.

To help you become an early adopter of the cryptocurrency and fully understand how it works, we're offering The Complete Ethereum Blockchain Mastery Bundle on ScienceAlert Academy for just US$21 for a limited time - it's usually US$29 and the total course value is US$610).

The bundle includes four courses and more than 21 hours of lectures, covering everything from the basics of blockchain technology to using Ethereum for your own products.

Here are the courses included:

Ethereum Blockchain Developer: Build Projects Using Solidity (Value $195)

This is one of the largest and most in-depth Ethereum development courses online. The 74 lectures will take you through the practicalities of working with Ethereum, including step-by-step blueprints for building your own projects.

Blockchain Technology: Build Projects Using Solidity (Value $25)

This 18-lecture course will cover everything you need to know to understand what blockchain technology actually means and the ecosystem it's built. By the end of it you'll understand where the value of cryptocurrencies comes from.

Ethereum Developer: Build A Decentralized Blockchain App (Value $195)

Become an early adopter of Ethereum technology and go step by step through building a decentralised blockchain app using Solidity 3, Truffle 2, and Angular.

Ethereum Developer Masterclass: Build Real World Projects (Value $195)

The final course helps you apply everything you've learnt to the real world. Across 142 lectures, you'll learn how to develop a real-world, Ethereum-based distributed application using Solidity. By the time you're doing, you'll be ready to launch your own initial coin offering (ICO) upon Ethereum - and that's where the real money is.

Buy the courseĀ here for the limited time price of US$21.

This is a promotional ScienceAlert Academy post, in partnership with StackCommerce. We carefully vet all courses and products to make sure they're relevant to our readers, and make a share in the profits of any sales.