On October 31, 2008 a white paper was published with the title: Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System. Known as the first decentralized digital currency with access to Internet highways and refuge from financial institutions, the concept of Bitcoins was initially sent out to a cryptography-community mailing list. The author, Satoshi Nakamoto, is said to be a mask for the original author(s) of the Bitcoin concept. Attempts were made to unveil the visage of Nakamoto by Newsweek in early March of 2014, but those attempts were met with backlash and failure.
Over the coming years the Bitcoin phenomena went mainstream and was met with a mix of heists, leaks, exploits, turbulent values, version updates, and historical events.
Scroll down to see a visual compilation of some of the biggest moments in the history of Bitcoin:
The concept of Bitcoin remains fascinating in nature and early adopters would soon be rewarded for their courage and curiosity when value skyrocketed. Of course, the very nature of a ‘digital currency’ causes skepticism. Adoptions rates were slow. the technical understanding of mining Bitcoins created barriers to entry, the value was volatile, and payments were irreversible. On the flip side, the advantages were clear to those who approach it with an open mind:
- Bitcoins can be sent person to person without going through a bank or clearing house
- Fees are lower
- They can be used in every country
- Accounts ccanot be frozen
- There are no pre-requisites or arbitrary limits
- There are no chargebacks or fees
- There are no costs to implement them, making them an exciting way for businesses of all sizes to gain a little exposure and more customers
In October 2009 the first Bitcoin exchange rates was established, setting a value at: $1 USD = 1,309.03 BTC.
Later in 2010 a member of the Bitcoin community announces he wants to order a pizza with Bitcoin. He puts in 10,000 BTC for 2 large pizzas, averaging the value out to 25-30 bucks. One year later in February 2011 the value of Bitcoin reaches parity with the U.S. dollar, climbing up to $350 and even peaking later at over $1,000 for a brief moment. Today the value of Bitcoin is around $287 USD but has yet to plateau from it’s spike in early 2014. Still in its infancy and with over $260 million in venture capital invested into Bitcoin companies in 2014, the future of Bitcoin remains an open book.
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