The recent Fireside chat, hosted by Bitcoin Association Founding President Jimmy Nguyen with his special guest Dr. Craig Wright at the CoinGeek Toronto Scaling Conference, revealed a lot about the origins of Bitcoin. The 45-minute chat, with a closing speech from the man behind the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto, not only got into specific details about Bitcoin’s origin story, but about the vision it was given from the start.
Nguyen spent no time avoiding the biggest question. He started by asking: “So Craig, I have some questions for you today. Did you create Bitcoin?”
Dr. Wright succinctly responded, “Yes.” Nguyen followed up with the next logical question, asking “Why?”
The answer to that has a lot to do with Dr. Wrights past. He studied at the feet of academics who worked in the early days of cryptocurrency, but despite their efforts, it had never worked. His revelation was that the world needed a cryptocurrency that had respect of governments. To do that, it had to be traceable, so he married the concept of cryptocurrency to blockchain to accomplish that.
Although he took his first crack at it in the 1990s, the origin for the idea for Bitcoin came after his days at Newcastle University when he had a better idea of the history of money. When crackdowns on gambling happened in the mid-2000s, he realized there was a need for something to help licensed organizations transact.
Skipping ahead, he gets to the origins of the Satoshi Nakamoto pseudonym. He emphasized the name Nakamoto, for Tomasu Nakamoto, a mostly forgotten restoration period Japanese economist. That man existed in a time when Japan was closing down to foreign trade, but Nakamoto realized that growth can only happen with increased trade. He came before the more famous Adam Smith, but existed at the wrong place and time to gain the same recognition.
Satoshi comes from a much simpler origin. Ash Ketchum, the protagonist of the very popular Pokemon games, went by the name Satoshi in Japan.
Dr. Wright admitted to having plenty of help in his early days, specifically from Dave Kleinman in keeping the code from crashing; However, none of them were Satoshi.
The body of the work attributed to Satoshi Nakamoto were all the efforts of Dr. Wright in those early days. He registered bitcoin.org, and admits that it’s ugly design was his own efforts. He also held the email address associated with Satoshi until it was compromised. He also wrote Satoshi message board posts, and admitted that it took a lot of time, stepping away from his desk, to avoid angry rants that he’s become known for sometimes.
He also talks about leaving Bitcoin to prove that he wasn’t wrong about it. When asked to describe that, he points to what was happening with Silk Road and other illegal sites. Dr. Wright, crushed that his Bitcoin was being used for criminality, led him to think he had failed in his attempt to create a better system of money.
Nguyen and Dr. Wright then get into why all of the key elements of Bitcoin were decided on, like why the proof of work system was chosen, why 21 million coins as a fixed amount, and so on. Dr. Wright provides detailed answered for each question that are worth watching to understand, because as he explains, many people in the industry simply don’t understand Bitcoin.
They also dive deep into why he won’t bend to his critics and simply make transactions with Satoshi’s known wallets to prove he’s Satoshi. Quite simply, it wouldn’t prove anything, as anyone could have gained control of those keys. Besides, he’s got nothing to prove to his critics. He explains:
“I’m not asking for money from you. I’m not asking for a job. Do you know what the definition of privacy is? It means, if I go to you asking for something, I prove based on what I’m asking. I don’t go out to the world and pull my pants down and show you everything I’ve got. Doesn’t work that way. That’s not private.”
As they were wrapping up, Dr. Wright noted that he doesn’t regret anything in his creation of Bitcoin, or anything that’s happened since, especially as it has now started to realize its original vision of massive blockchain scaling and enterprise development on a stable protocol with Bitcoin SV (BSV).
He’s most thankful for his wife, who has supported him in the toughest times, and helped him navigate the world as the sometimes thorny and anti-social person he can be.
In his closing speech, Dr. Wright noted that he’s given the world the Bitcoin protocol, but that’s just the solid foundation from which developers need to go build on. He’s excited to see what talented programmers can do with Bitcoin, and create a new world of possibilities on the BSV blockchain.
That’s just the highlights though. If you really want to get into the mind of Satoshi Nakamoto, the only way to do it is to watch the whole video and get the full explanations from the man himself.
To watch the Fireside Chat of Bitcoin Association Founding President Jimmy Nguyen with Bitcoin creator Dr. Craig Wright, watch below.
The Genesis protocol upgrade on February 4, 2020 is a monumental step in the history of Bitcoin, and will see BSV returned as close as possible to the original protocol as envisioned by Satoshi Nakamoto. Visit the Genesis Hard Fork page to learn more.
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