Today marks the 5th year anniversary since The Idea of a Genuine Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System Was Born.
I embarked earlier this month attempting to digitally illustrate the real original “Book of Bitcoin” – the whitepaper written by a person or group named ‘Satoshi Nakamoto‘, entitled “Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System“, published live on October 31, 2008.
In my digital illustration, I showcase the book of Bitcoin among other books in the archives of Crypto Chain University, which I founded in 2010, meant as a repository of all the scientific research papers as well as whitepapers related to Cryptocurrency and Blockchain.
The document issued to the subscribers of the cryptography mailing list described a revolutionary technology that created the world’s first genuine peer-to-peer and decentralized monetary system. The internet-based money enabled online payments without a third party and also wasn’t issued by a government or corporate entity. Nakamoto’s brilliant paper sums up Bitcoin’s primary attributes in the first few sentences that state:
[Bitcoin] a purely peer-to-peer version of electronic cash would allow online payments to be sent directly from one party to another without going through a financial institution.
Digital signatures provide part of the solution, but the main benefits are lost if a trusted third party is still required to prevent double-spending. We propose a solution to the double-spending problem using a peer-to-peer network.
The network timestamps transactions by hashing them into an ongoing chain of hash-based proof-of-work, forming a record that cannot be changed without redoing the proof-of-work.
When Bitcoin was released into the wild in January of 2009, the decentralized network slowly started transforming the way society perceives money and the entire financial system in general. Bitcoin started with just a few adopters, like Hal Finney who received 10 BTC completing the very first bitcoin transaction. Now the protocol is used by millions of people from every corner of the world, giving individuals a better way to bank, while also moving their funds without permission from so-called rulers.
In fact, bitcoin is considered the ‘people’s money’ because the decentralized cryptocurrency has no rulers and gives individuals the sovereign freedom to do whatever they want with their money. The complex monetary system is not based on force or fraud, but rather valid consent towards relying on the consensus of math. This is a stark contrast to the untrustworthy banking system we know of today.
“What is needed is an electronic payment system based on cryptographic proof instead of trust, allowing any two willing parties to transact directly with each other without the need for a trusted third party,” explains Nakamoto’s paper.
A lot of people also agree that the importance and relevance of Satoshi’s paper will live on forever, and will always give newcomers an excellent summary of what cryptocurrency is, and the vast possibilities in store for the future. “We have proposed a system for electronic transactions without relying on trust,” Nakamoto concludes at the end of the paper.
Since then, Bitcoin has become a living and breathing economy that has yet to be stopped. On the fifth anniversary of the Bitcoin whitepaper, 2013 is showing there are no signs of this revolutionary system slowing down.
Long Live The Bitcoin! In Bitcoin We Trust!