Bitcoin mining is relatively new but many people are getting hooked to the idea of being involved into the crypto currency world. In the past, gold has to be mined from the earth and things have not really changed much. Like gold, crypto currencies also need to be mined but mining is made through specialized computers that have the capability to solve complex math problems. These math problems no matter how complex can be solved with a Bitcoin in return.
The profitability of Bitcoin mining depends largely on what mining software is being used, the price of electricity in your location, the current price of crypto currency that is being mined and the overheads. The catch to Bitcoin mining is the machine being used that consumes a lot of electricity. The good thing here is the availability of mining hardware for every level and budget whether mining is only a hobby or a full scale Bitcoin mining pursuit.
Crypto currencies that include Bitcoin were designed to become difficult to mine with the passing of time so that better hardware is necessary to cope with the increasing difficulty. A lot of people joined hands to mine and this is called the mining pool. Miners have the freedom to select which mining pool to join although a smaller pool is a better approach to avoid concentration of hashing power.
Miners have several approaches available from the pay-per-share (PPS) and pay-per-last N shares (PPLNS) to the slush approach. Miners can also choose from P2Pool, Eliguis, Geometric and Double Geometric approaches that are based on existing approaches and are refinements.
Cloud mining is a service that allows you to pay for hashing power. The service is hosted on data centers and sold in the form of Gigahash/seconds (GH/s). When you use cloud mining for crypto currencies there is no power limitation. There are many popular cloud mining companies online but it is suggested to choose the provider wisely. There are companies with specialized datacenters equipped with security features to ensure risk-free mining. Bitcoin mining can be a profitable pursuit as long as you know and understand what you are doing.