Bitcoin 101 video
Our online guides cover everything crypto, from getting starting to trading like a pro. try restarting your device. Your browser can't play this video. Learn about the world's top cryptocurrencies including how bitcoin works, how to buy bitcoin, DeFi 3 Courses | 15 Minutes. crashCourseCardImage. A cryptocurrency and decentralized digital currency without a central bank or single a file-sharing system, and Skype, an audio, video and chat service. REASON BEHIND BITCOIN RISE
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Bitcoin 101 video morning evening star forex tradingBitcoin 101: What, How, and Why?
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Importantly, the system itself is headless and distributed globally, making it both resistant to corruption and extremely durable. What gives Bitcoin value? Bitcoin has value for two key reasons: Thanks to its features, some people find it useful as a way to store and exchange value. Because a group of people agree it has value.
Historically, people have used everything from seashells to bottle caps as money, but arguably the most enduring form of money is gold. People settled on gold thanks to its rarity, its durability, and its divisibility.
These features made gold useful as a method for storing and exchanging value. Bitcoin is often compared to gold because it has similar characteristics. Namely: It has a limited supply. There will only ever be 21 million bitcoins. It's easily divisible. You can divide one bitcoin into million pieces. It's durable. A huge globally distributed network of independently operated computers tracks Bitcoin ownership.
This ensures that no bitcoin is lost. Beyond this, Bitcoin has a few other important features which allow it to bring gold's monetary properties to the modern digital era. These are: It's easy to send bitcoin. It's almost like sending an encrypted email. It's easy to verify the authenticity of bitcoin.
Actually, it's effectively impossible to transact with fake bitcoin. Thanks to the utility of gold, the gold 'network' - to use a modern term - grew over time until gold became almost universally accepted as having value. Although Bitcoin, which started in , is much newer than gold, Bitcoin's network efforts benefit from the scale and speed of the modern Internet.
The number of people who place value in Bitcoin has grown at an exponential pace since inception to the point that Bitcoin's value is now closing in on gold's - and that may be just the beginning. Satoshi Nakamoto is, we will talk about, is anonymous so we do not know exactly what he was thinking when he was designing Bitcoin. But fortunately, he has written enough and we will use some of his quotes in the story then we get an idea of the processes he was going through.
So let us move forward. In , our story begins and it was not just coincidence that Bitcoin as an idea, was born in amid the turmoil of the financial crisis. In these years, it was pretty easy to notice that the average person was more concerned about the idea of money than normal.
And Bitcoin address similar ideas. So people were talking about the Fed a lot in those years. There were lots of discussions about money creation, monetary control, and quantitative easing. Of course, there were those who thought the bailouts were acceptable and the Fed was acting appropriately with the stimulus package and all that and there were those who did not.
So a lot of chaos, mistrust and anger ensued and it was directed at these big financial institutions, banks, insurance companies like AIG or the Fed. All these organizations that wielded enormous financial powers. But our story does not deal with those two groups. It deals with a much smaller group of programmers, individuals who thought that software was the way to address the problems they perceived with money.
And our story focuses on one person in particular and that person is Satoshi Nakamoto who as we mentioned is anonymous but he uses a male Japanese pseudonym. So we will just honor his request and call him a he. He could be a female; could be a group of people; could be merchants.
We do not know who they are. But we do have some of the writings. So whoever did this was posting and blogging and updating Bitcoin. They wrote on white paper and they signed it with Satoshi Nakamoto and in some of those writings from their account, they wrote this.
Banks must be trusted to hold our money and transfer it electronically, but they lend it out in waves of credit bubbles with barely a fraction in reserve. But what becomes evident from this is that he is an excellent writer. He has got an intimate idea of the history of finance and cryptography and he believes that inside software there is a solution to the financial crisis.
His particular solutions is devilishly simple. He wants to turn ones and zeros into money. And this is not like your credit card or online banking where those ones and zeros or those numbers represent money held by the bank or some other institution. This is actually, turning ones and zeros into money such that if you hold those ones and zeros or you hold that long stringing numbers, you are actually holding that money and this had never been done before. But, what is important to realize is that this dream was not new.
So 20 to 30 years ago, IBM and others were very involved in trying to develop digital currencies. Milton Friedman, the noble laureate in economics also does a big televised interview where he was talking about the powers that would be possible if you could create a digital currency. And he talked about softening borders and possibly even eroding the nation state. And still, there were others. So people had written New York Time's bestsellers that focused on digital currencies and the provocative changes it might bring into our society.
But the most famous group when it comes to development of digital currencies is the cypherpunks. So they are not the cyberpunks. And this was a group that started in San Francisco. Guys that were just meeting up that eventually became one of the first mailing list in history. So in the early 90's, it was a collection of really powerful programmers from Apple, Microsoft, the government all getting together. Some of them are anonymous, some of them using their real names talking about using cryptography to change the way the world works.
So they believe that inside the digital domain, inside cryptography, they could side step the problems of money created by politics, banks and special interests. And they had been thinking about this since the 80's. And this is from their own manifest that reads, "Cypherpunks advocates the widespread use of cryptography as a route to social and political change. And so it is important to realize that there is enormous advantages of taking your currency and turning it into something that is digital and most of these are fairly obvious.
Now, you can send your currency very fast and so the velocity of money increases into a maximum. The currency itself weighs nothing, so storage and transport is minimal. It is programmable, so depending on how complex the programming algorithm is in the digital currency, it can actually, make decisions based on external factors. It is very internet ready.
Right, current cash is not very good with the internet. It is international obviously it provides easy accounting because it already digital and already typed in. It is cheap to issue. Governments spend billions of dollars printing and minting and protecting a currency and they also spend billions of dollars fighting counterfeits.
And then there are of course, probably other things that I did not think of right here. But there was a big problem. So going digital, turning money into digital was proving really elusive to all these genius cypherpunks. They were having a hard time going digital and it is important to understand the very qualities of digital that were making this difficult.
And the biggest problem was that digital is great at recording things and then once you recorded it, it is even better at making perfect copies. So you can make perfect copies of music, perfect copies of video tapes, photos and data and you could make perfect copies of messages. So transactions, digital tokens, etcetera and this is really important because the first idea that almost anyone would have if they are going to try and create a digital currency is that they are going to try to make some form of digital token something that cannot be copied that I can pass around and I can prove uniqueness.
Well that is really difficult, with digital domain. Anything that IBM and these others were trying to develop to make these digital tokens was quickly being copied by hackers. So this perfect ability to copy was thwarting digital currencies. This is pretty clear perfect copies make bad money. So if counterfeits are indistinguishable from the Real McCoy, you do not have the monetary system. If you can run off US Dollars from a Xerox copier then you do not have financial institutions at all.
Here is a little poster the US Government is spending money trying to alert the public to the problems of counterfeit money. There is going to be a delay time between sending it and when it arrives. This could be one second or even up to even minutes but it is usually around 15 seconds.
But what can happen is that in this time, a clever hacker or whatever, can resend the same transaction, using the same value to numerous other people. And so this idea of double spending really could have been called the infinite spending problem and as more and more experts started to think about the difficulty of creating these digital tokens or this infinite spending problem. They started to think that creating digital currencies might just be impossible. And so all this excitement towards digital currencies started to die off.
But in , with the financial crisis and all these concerns about money, new fires were being rekindled in the imagination of some of these programmers. And Satoshi Nakamoto working in was one of them. Again, he was inflamed and frustrated by the current monetary system and he was having real difficulties with the double spending problem and these digital tokens and he started to look elsewhere for inspiration.
And BitTorrent was famous partly because it replaced this even more famous company called Napster. And if you say Napster to a programmer it is as famous as if you are saying the Trojan Horse. Launched in , shut down in. Napster's failure became an important case study for hackers and a turning point in the design of modern software systems. Centralized, meaning bad and centralized meaning not robust. So they were ultimately centralized. What happen is, they probably got some sort of court injunction but I like to picture it as the FBI went in and when the FBI went in they walked over to these hard drives and the server and they unplugged them and Napster was done.
With one plug, they had shut down the entire system. And so literally the same year that it was shut down, the code for BitTorrent was released and it has been running ever since without being shut down. And it's coup de grace, its solution to the centralized problem was to flip the problem of storage on its head. Instead of central servers, the BitTorrent algorithm chopped all the media files up in to tiny pieces and scrambled them on users' computers everywhere.
So Billy Jean and Jurassic Park were put all over the place, multiple copies everywhere. So when someone went to download it, they queried many computers that would bring it all together. Now, it is important to realize that BitTorrent is not even fully decentralized but it is a much more decentralized system than Napster and it is the seismic change in software that moves from Napster which was not robust to BitTorrent which cannot be shut down by authorities.
And the rule of software right now is to never centralize again. Much as you kind of consider the hunters of old as being really proud because they shut this big massive centralized biology which was an elephant, right? Which is now kind of so pathetic and sad that if you see someone who has hunted an elephant, you actually feel bad for the elephant and you feel how antiquated these hunters are, that they could be proud that they shot an elephant.
It is so easy to find an elephant, you can do it with your infrared camera. You can find it with helicopters from the sky. If you really want to impress people as a hunter and sort of this new idea of decentralization, you might have to go around mosquitoes or bacteria or viruses.
Things that take the same amount of biology and spread it out in copy at like crazy everywhere. Very similar thing that has happened in biology is now happening to software. And so we get back to our story.
Satoshi was working in who was read about the success of BitTorrent at the death of Napster. He was determined to apply this idea of BitTorrent to banks. He wanted to find out what was the centralized part of banks. What was it? Money is not the centralized part.
That is spread out like mosquitoes everywhere. It is copied and moved all over the place. He decided that if he could find that centralized part of the bank, he might be able to create a digital currency. And in a moment of genius, he decided to start to look at the ledger. And it is pretty interesting. If you walk in to almost any big bank with a gun and you say, "Clean out the vaults or let me access your ledger," they probably be more likely to let you clean out their vaults.
Because the ledger is where banks control money.
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