Miners: computers which perform the cryptographic work required to secure the network and, in proof-of-work (POW) coins like Bitcoin, receive 'block rewards' (i.e. Bitcoin) for doing it. If you're playing with Bitcoin, you can't do this without major investment; if you're playing with an altcoin like Ether and you've got a recent graphics card, go for it. Online wallet: A Bad Idea(TM). Exchange: place where you can trade something for something else (literally 'exchanging' it). Lets you trade crypto for Real Money, for example, or crypto for other crypto. Some try to encourage you to lose everything by offering things like leveraged shorts or longs (bets that the value will go up or down, where the actual increase or decrease is multiplied by 10x or 100x - meaning a 1% drop in something you thought would go up is enough to wipe you out at a 100x leverage). The domain of day traders. Paper wallet: the public and private keys for a given cryptocurrency address or range of addresses, printed on a bit of paper. Assuming the computer you printed it out from is never online and your generator isn't a fake, completely secure - until you lose it or it's stolen. You also can't (or shouldn't) spend directly from a paper wallet: if you want to use your coins, you need to 'sweep' the full balance into a 'hot' wallet then throw away the now-useless paper wallet. Hardware wallet: a device which stores the public and private keys in a chip that isn't directly accessible from your computer. Secure like a paper wallet, except you can actually spend from it securely. Nice, but expensive. There's also: Hot wallet: a wallet on a computer connected to the internet from which you can spend, but which is as a result vulnerable to attack. Warm wallet: something like a Ledger Nano S, which you *can* spend from but which is a bit of a pain in the arse 'cos you have to get it out of your pocket, hook it up to a PC that has the software installed, unlock it, load the software, verify each transaction, and so forth. Cold wallet: a wallet that you can't spend from without considerable effort and which is therefore more-or-less immune to attack - like a paper wallet or a hardware wallet locked in a safe. You should be storing all your stuff here, with only a bit in one of the two above. Also, be aware that while they're called 'wallets' it's completely the wrong term: they're keychains, holding the public and private keys you need to transact with your coin on the network. It's important, because a real wallet full of cash can't be copied; a cryptocurrency wallet can. Bought a pre-printed paper wallet on FleaBay? There's no guarantee the sender didn't keep a copy of the private key, and you won't have any idea until you've loaded it full of coin only to see it vanish before your very eyes. Oh, nearly forgot: Cloud mining: A scam. Do not give a cloud mining operation any of your money. Ever.