History of Bitcoin
Bitcoin is the king of all cryptocurrencies. Whenever someone says “cryptocurrency” or “blockchain”, the first word that comes to people’s mind would be Bitcoin. There’s a reason why the Bitcoin market cap has hit over $200 billion. It’s insanely popular, and it’s also the first cryptocurrency that popularized the idea of decentralization.
Many other cryptocurrencies have come and gone, but none of them has been able to dethrone Bitcoin from the first position in the crypto market cap rankings. Have you ever wondered where it all began? Have you ever wondered what’s the story behind Bitcoin and who created it? Well, this article will tell you everything about it. Let’s go.
It was August 18th, 2008. At the time, the domain bitcoin.org was registered. A few months later, by October 31st, 2008, a new white paper was published by someone called Satoshi Nakamoto. The title of the white paper was Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System. The white paper talked about how the world needed to have a new system to do trustless electronic transactions. That system was Bitcoin.
Bitcoin creator, Satoshi Nakamoto, actually never showed his face or his real name to anybody. Satoshi Nakamoto was merely a pseudonym, and the real figure behind Satoshi Nakamoto is still unknown even until today.
Satoshi also started the first process of “mining” that created new Bitcoin supplies. Yes, all Bitcoin creations were and are processed through a mining process that is using a Proof-of-Work algorithm. Proof-of-Work algorithm is a mechanism where the miner is rewarded by a new supply of Bitcoin when his computer is able to solve a computationally difficult mathematical puzzle.
Every new block is added once the miner’s computer solves a puzzle. The block then connects to the previous block in the form of a chain. Hence why the technology that supports Bitcoin is called the blockchain.
It was January 3rd, 2009, when Bitcoin’s first genesis block was finally produced through this mining process and it granted 50 BTC to Satoshi Nakamoto himself as the mining reward. It was historic because Satoshi included a particular text into the genesis block: The Times 03/Jan/2009 Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks.
Apparently, Satoshi wanted to prove a point that fractional-reserve banking does not help the people. Yes, it’s pretty well known that Bitcoin was created as a direct result of the 2008 global financial crisis. The earliest Bitcoin open-source client was historically uploaded to SourceForge on January 9th, 2009.
The Early Adopters
Many of Bitcoin’s earliest adopters were other programmers who had similar ideological views to Satoshi. One of the most recognized names among Bitcoin’s earliest adopters was Hal Finney. Finney decided to download Bitcoin software on its very first day, and he even got 10 BTC from Satoshi himself as the reward.
There was also Nick Szabo, who was known as the inventor of bit gold. Nick Szabo became particularly famous after some wild speculation that mentioned Nick Szabo was actually Satoshi himself. Nick denied this accusation.
Bitcoin kept getting more popular in the following years. It successfully attracted attention from many libertarians and other kinds of tech engineers. Many people who believed in the idea of Bitcoin decided to use their computing power to mine Bitcoins. The earliest miners who kept their BTC holdings for years have been rewarded greatly, with many of them becoming millionaires back in 2016-2017 after they cash out their Bitcoins back to fiat.
Nowadays, Bitcoin has become mainstream. It has been mentioned in a lot of mainstream media. Many traders who don’t really care about decentralization have also been speculating and investing in Bitcoin.
Who Is Satoshi Nakamoto?
After Bitcoin’s incredible rise to the top of popularity, many media have been speculating, “who is the real person behind Satoshi Nakamoto?” There were some wild claims that mentioned Dorian Nakamoto from Temple City, California, was the real man behind Satoshi Nakamoto pseudonym. However, Dorian denied this rumor.
Another speculation talked about Nick Szabo behind the legendary pseudonym. But, as mentioned above, Nick himself denied this claim. There were also some speculations that pointed their finger to Hal Finney, but these speculations were also weak rumors with no hard evidence.
And then, there is Craig Wright, who publicly claims he’s the real Satoshi Nakamoto. However, many crypto enthusiasts don’t really believe his claims because he could never really prove it. Another name that came to people’s speculation was Paul Solotshi Calder Le Roux, who is known for being a criminal but genius cryptographer.
Whoever the real Satoshi is, he or she or they have successfully created and popularized the idea of decentralized digital money that empowers trustless electronic transactions. Nowadays, there are thousands of different cryptocurrencies with different technologies and use cases. None of them would have been possible without Bitcoin.