Handshake is a Proof-of-Work protocol like Bitcoin, except unlike Bitcoin where you only use the coins as money, Handshake tokens (HNS) are also used to register names on the Handshake blockchain. Handshake names are top-level domain names (often called domain extensions: .com, .net, .org are top-level domains) but unlike traditional domain names that you can only rent, you truly own your Handshake names forever, which no one can take from you nor prevent others from accessing. And rather than being limited to renting from a small number of top-level domains like .com and .org, you can own and use almost any top-level domain you can think of, including ones with Chinese characters, Russian characters, and even emojis!
HNS refers to Handshake coins, which are the digital currency of the Handshake blockchain that you use to bid on Handshake names and pay transaction fees to the miners who add your transactions to the Handshake blockchain.
Namebase is an onramp for Handshake — you can use our platform to buy and sell HNS as well as manage, purchase, sell, and bid on Handshake names.