In real life money (currency) may be exchanged for goods and services - on E2 XP is exchannged for nodes (goods) and votes (services).

XP is what may capture a newbie noder, or keep you going through the hard times (when you should be studying for exams which start tomorrow... no wait, it is tomorrow, they start in 25 minutes -- and you have yet to start studying... better node your experience first!)

XP is the battle for recognition... people strive to attain good XP. Unfortunately like all things, the harder you look, the better it hides! At first you will try hard to write decent writeups to get XP, but once that wears off (in some cases it fails to wear off, leading to serious noding deficiencies, like endless, ill-formatted, non-hardlinked, mass paste jobs which are frowned upon...) but when it does wear off, you will just node without being so worried about XP. That is when your nodes will become better, and your XP will accelerate...

In any case, XP is what keeps E2 going to some extent! Decent writeups will lead to increase in XP - you will be rewarded! And with your reward will come higher levels and more privileges within the E2 network!