Cardano ADA is a 3rd generation cryptocurrency being developed by IOHK. The Cardano project began in Tokyo, Japan, with ideas from a former member of the Ethereum development team. Because of this it was labeled “the Japanese Ethereum” early on, although this reference is no longer being actively used in mid 2018.
Cardano is not a token, it is an independent blockchain which does not rely on any previously existing technology. It is being implemented from scratch.
ADA is the cryptocurrency symbol while Cardano is the name of the overall project.
Total supply of Cardano ADA at the time of this writing: 31.112.483.745 ADA
Maximum total supply: 45.000.000.000 ADA
Daedalus Wallet is the official Cardano full node wallet (which will allow staking).
Is Cardano mineable?
Yes, Cardano is “mineable”.
To be precise, it is a proof of stake based coin that you can mint through its specific ADA staking process. Staking tests will begin in Q3 2018 and is still not possible at the time of this writing (mid 2018).
Once fully decentralized (after the Shelley update), users will be able to stake their ADA coins and earn slot (“block”) rewards.
Staking pools will be made available from within Cardano’s official wallet user interface.
How is Cardano unique?
This is unique in the sense that all these features are built into Cardano since the early project stages, whereas in other cryptocurrencies the compliance and other features are added as plugins or layers built on top of the blockchain later on.
Cardano releases all features as part of a large software ecosystem that is being developed in phases according to a roadmap.