Quoted from rai:
I mean what is the purpose of the computation? Are they being used for anything? It seems like a lot of hardware and electricity to mine for them (solve an equation) is that equation useful for anything?
From what I gather, the miners provide the security, transparency, and "low cost" of the transactions. Of course, those that mine without success provide free service at their own expense.
Also, from the extremely few articles I have skimmed, the low cost is now very high, and likely prohibitive to "the common man". $1000 in electricity to mine $10,000,,,,, if you are the one that solves the whatever.
Again, I've really got no clue, but that is what my searches seem to find.
Wish I had mined/bought a few coins early on, I'd be selling all but 2 by now.