January 3, 2019 / by

PERSPECTIVES ON BITCOIN’S 10th ANNIVERSARY, PT. 1

Bloq has brought together a uniquely talented and passionate group that not only believes in the power of blockchain technology but, within that scope, still manages to offer a diversity of opinions.

Ten years after the production of the Bitcoin “genesis block” and, earlier, the publication of the Bitcoin whitepaper, here’s how the ensuing decade has impacted some of us here. You can also read our co-founder Jeff Garzik’s own story at Breaker.

John C. Vernaleo
Senior Blockchain Engineer

A working system is worth a dozen unimplemented whitepapers. Bitcoin had a working system early on, and that is the most important part for me. I may be in a minority here, but I tend to approach the Satoshi whitepaper itself as more or less a historical curiosity. The field is littered with whitepapers that go nowhere. The part that I care about is that the bitcoin software was actually released (and even mostly worked) soon after the whitepaper.

Dariusz R. Jakubowski
Head of Community

In the same way that Contact depicted an alien group sending cryptic instructions for how to facilitate interstellar travel, so too did Satoshi provide instructions for the new world of “cryptopolitik.”

The great sociologist, Bruno Latour, postulated that we should shift how we think about the creation of values and norms within a community/culture from realpolitik to dingpolitik. In essence, this was a shift from saying “our morals define our objects and drive our community building” to “our objects, places, and things (ding) are the generative locus of these moral and political aesthetics.”

Satoshi’s seminal work, I argue, abstracts this even further and demonstrates — particularly well, I may add — how we build communities and generate morals/norms/values in a distributed fashion.

Typically the “ding” would have a physical location or a physical totem to gather around. With digital communities — especially cryptocurrency communities — the only physical locations of consensus are the nodes and miners, however community participants still gather around the digital ding: the crypto they hold.

Through this, they agree upon what is important for their community build around these digital objects (cryptocurrency), they define what they are, what they aren’t, and when they change — all based off the (digital) item itself.

Additionally, the need to know who the other community members are has mostly vanished. This is a new phenomenon.

It’s not just distributed dingpolitik, it’s cryptopolitik.

Jordan Kruger
Director of Research and Operations

Life changing.

Jed Bridges
Designer

In the wake of the 2008 economic collapse it became clear that government officials had been manipulating our money in an unsafe, uneducated, and unhealthy way. It also became clear that this will continue to happen. The advent of crypto, to me, means freedom from this broken greed system—and freedom to truly own what is mine.

Troy Benjegerdes
Principal Engineer

I first downloaded the bitcoin software and started CPU mining when I saw a farmer selling alpaca socks for bitcoin and thought “Hey, I can actually buy something I can use with this imaginary internet money.”

Since then, the Chicago Board of Trade has listed bitcoin as a commodity, and I am still working out the requirements for a stable satoshi-consensus currency that I can price corn and soybeans with, instead of currencies that change on the whims of a few leaders elected by a small privileged, vocal, and volatile minority of the world’s population.

To me, democracy is when the citizens of the world can vote with their choice of currency, and Satoshi’s paper provided the fundamental advances in computer science and accounting infrastructure to start building true consensus-based governance.

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