According to foreign media reports, 10 years ago today, someone sent an academic paper to the encrypted mailing list under the name of Satoshi Nakamoto, proposing a digital currency concept called bitcoin. The pseudonym Ben Cong (whose real identity is not yet clear) describes the idea of mining a small amount of this virtual currency through a peer-to-peer (p2p) model, independent of banks, governments or any other central institution. Once people start using Bitcoin, its impossible for the government to stop using it as it used to try to create digital money like electronic gold.
Bitcoin has become a global phenomenon nowadays. Bitcoin prices have fallen sharply from a high of nearly $20,000 in December 2017, and are now priced at thousands of dollars per bitcoin. But in retrospect, the price of bitcoin in the early 2017 was less than 1000 dollars. At the same time, digital currencies are springing up, but none of them appeals to users or investors like Bitcoin, and venture capitalists are pouring millions of dollars into start-ups seeking to take advantage of this basic technology.
It all started with that paper. Many of the basic concepts of Bitcoin already existed by the time this paper was published, including the idea of issuing digital money to users of computing resources dedicated to solving problems. However, Emin Gun Sirer, a computer science professor at Cornell University, attributes a major breakthrough to Mr. Yamato: a way to ensure that users trust each other and trust the network, without relying on the gatekeeper.
Bitcoin relies on a sort of ledger technology called block chain. Each transaction is encrypted and recorded in the block chain. Block chains are distributed to each participant in the Bitcoin network to prevent anyone from reusing their Bitcoins.
Because tampering with books is difficult (if not impossible), anyone can download bitcoin software and block chains and participate in the bitcoin network. There are no companies that control access to the network, nor have you been asked to submit written applications. Establishing a money system that does not require a gatekeeper is not a concern for many, but once the problem is solved, the concept of distributed digital money shifts from the academic fringe to society as a whole.
(bitcoin) proves that this is possible and is a major contribution to computer science. Gonser pointed out that Zhong Ben cong has opened the door to change the entire financial industry.
The rise of bitcoin is largely due to the lack of intelligence. He disappeared from the Internet in 2010, leaving Bitcoin software to some early collaborators, and the search for Mr. Nakamoto was largely fruitless. Newsweek published a cover story claiming that Mr. Nakamoto was not a pseudonym, but the real name of a retired engineer living in Temple City, California, which has largely been disproved. Wired also reports on Australian scholar Craig Wright, who claims to be Nakamoto, but cannot be confirmed.
Despite its enormous success, Bitcoin has failed to fulfill Mr. Nakamotos dream of becoming a currency for everyday transactions, largely a vehicle for speculators. Part of the reason is that the deal is very slow. Gunther estimates that the Bitcoin network handles about three transactions per second, far below Visas 3674 transactions per second. There are also other problems, such as the astonishing carbon emissions generated by Bitcoin network computing, which a report shows is already comparable to the energy consumption of a small country.
Mr Nakamotos successor to the Bitcoin project, as well as other digital money developers, is trying to solve these problems in ways that are sometimes quite different from the original white paper. The Bitcoin project is considering an innovation called the Lighting Network to speed up trading by moving most of the transactions out of the block chain. At the same time, Gonser and others are studying new solutions to speed and environmental impacts. Others have created new digital currencies, trying to solve a range of bitcoin issues ranging from performance to privacy.
Technically, the concept proposed by Zhong Ben Cong has gone beyond any conceivable way. Gonser said. But at present, there are no solutions to the problems we still face.
This led Gonser to claim in June twitter that Ben Ben is dead. Gonsell does not mean that Nakamoto really died, but it is similar to Nietzsches idea of God is dead: even Nakamoto cant solve the problems facing the digital money community.
Jonathan Sidego, a senior executive at Numerai, a hedge fund, agrees with Gonsell that Mr. Nakamotos paper has little guiding significance for the current problems facing Bitcoin and that the public needs to interpret Mr. Nakamotos paper in different ways.
But this is not to say that Zhong Ben Cong or that paper is irrelevant. Its definitely worth reading for anyone interested in understanding how block chains work, Gonsel said. This paper is short and vigorous, readable and absolutely worth reading.
Neha Narula, director of the digital money program at the MIT Media Lab, agrees. At a panel discussion at Wired Magazines 25th anniversary celebration, Narula was asked what to recommend when she was asked about books or papers on digital money. She chose Nakamotos paper. Surprisingly, the paper is still effective, she said. This is still the best way to understand how bitcoin works. She also believes that the subsequent silence of Zhong Ben Cong is an important part of the heritage of the bitcoin maker. One of the coolest bits of bitcoin is that its creator has gone. She said, many people feel that they have ownership of the matter. I dont think people would think much of it if the people who created it and opened it were still there. (Han Bing) source: NetEase science and technology report editor: Wang Fengzhi _NT2541
Neha Narula, director of the digital money program at the MIT Media Lab, agrees. At a panel discussion at Wired Magazines 25th anniversary celebration, Narula was asked what to recommend when she was asked about books or papers on digital money. She chose Nakamotos paper. Surprisingly, the paper is still effective, she said. This is still the best way to understand how bitcoin works.
She also believes that the subsequent silence of Zhong Ben Cong is an important part of the heritage of the bitcoin maker. One of the coolest bits of bitcoin is that its creator has gone. She said, many people feel that they have ownership of the matter. I dont think people would think much of it if the people who created it and opened it were still there. (Han ice)