The famous story of the mysterious identity of Bitcoin’s creator Satoshi Nakamoto is nothing new to us. But just like how history class was important during our schooling days, it is also important to understand the history of cryptocurrency and how it came to be as a/an (aspiring) crypto investor.
Long before Bitcoin and other digital alternative currencies appeared, cryptocurrency existed as a theoretical notion. Early cryptocurrency advocates shared the goal of addressing what they viewed as “conventional” fiat currencies’ practical and political shortcomings using advanced mathematics and computer science concepts. If you are interested in Bitcoin trading, this crypto trading platform is a great venue to start!
Okay! Brace yourself since we will look into the brief timeline of Bitcoin and cryptocurrency in the following paragraphs.
1980s – The Pre-Bitcoin Era
Several attempts prior to the current versions of cryptocurrencies failed to achieve broad support. These are early 1980s notions from the Netherlands and the United States. Digicash, which went bankrupt in the 1990s, was maybe the first prominent digital currency.
DigiCash was founded by American computer scientist and cryptographer David Chaum. DigiCash has only been around for a decade and has failed to persuade banks to embrace its technology during that period. The firm declared bankruptcy in 1998, ten years before Bitcoin’s official launch.
B-Money, Hashcash, Flooz, and Bit Gold are examples of other efforts at cryptocurrencies or their underlying technology.
1998 – 2009 – Wei Dai and Satoshi Nakamoto
Wei Dai, a Chinese author and computer engineer, was the first to define modern cryptocurrencies in 1998. The concept was completely released in 2009 when a white paper outlining the fundamentals of blockchain and Bitcoin was published. “Satoshi Nakamoto,” the white paper’s author, is probably a pseudonym for either a person or a group of individuals.
2009 – 2010 – The Beginning of Bitcoin
Since Bitcoin’s inception in 2009, a growing group of Bitcoin supporters began trading and mining the cryptocurrency. Bitcoin is usually considered the first modern cryptocurrency since it was the first publicly used method of trade to combine decentralised control, user privacy, blockchain-based record-keeping, and built-in scarcity.
For the first time in 2010, someone chose to sell their Bitcoins, exchanging 10,000 of them for two pizzas. If the buyer had held on to those Bitcoins, they would now be worth more than $100 million at today’s values.
2011 – The Rise of Alternative Coins
The first rival cryptocurrencies emerge as Bitcoin grows in popularity and the concept of decentralised and encrypted money gains traction. These are also known as alternative coins or altcoins, and they aim to improve on the original Bitcoin architecture by providing faster transaction speeds, anonymity, or some other benefit. Namecoin and Litecoin were among the first to emerge.
2012 – WordPress and Bitcoin
WordPress was the first large retailer to accept Bitcoin as payment in late 2012. Others followed suit, including Newegg.com, Expedia, Microsoft, and Tesla, an online electronics store. Today, many big companies already accept Bitcoin as a valid payment method.
2013 – 2014 – Bitcoin’s Years of Dilemma
In 2013, the price of one Bitcoin dropped sharply just after it passed $1,000 for the first time. In 2014, Mt.Gox, the world’s largest Bitcoin exchange, went down, and the owners of 850,000 Bitcoins never saw them again. Those lost coins are worth $4.4 billion at today’s value.
2016 – Ethereum and Smart Contracts
As the popularity of the blockchain technology rose, so did the introduction of other currencies based on it. Ethereum, the second-largest currency by market cap in the crypto industry, is the most notable Bitcoin alternative.
The term “smart contract” refers to software that runs on the Ethereum blockchain. It is a collection of code (its functions) and data (its state) stored on the Ethereum blockchain at a single address. They have a balance and are able to send transactions via the Internet. However, they are not managed by a user; rather, they are deployed to the network and run according to a set of instructions.
2017 – The Growth of Bitcoin and Blockchain Technology
During a period when Bitcoin’s value stayed below prior heights, a gradual expansion of the venues where it could be used contributed to the currency’s ongoing appeal. Meanwhile, the blockchain technology that supports Bitcoin has ignited a financial (and beyond) revolution.
2018 – The Crypto Market Crash
According to statistics source CoinMarketCap.com, the aggregate worth of the more than 1,400 cryptocurrencies in circulation has dropped from over $800 billion at the start of January to about $460 billion by mid-January.
2019 – Libra, The Facebook Coin
Facebook confirmed launching a currency initially termed “GlobalCoin” or “Facebook Coin.” In July 2019, it was officially named “Libra.” However, the blockchain project delayed its launch until all regulatory concerns have been addressed.
Bitcoin and Ethereum, for example, have shown to be quite robust. In recent months, digital currencies have sparked the interest of both individual and institutional investors. Currently, there are over 4,000 cryptocurrencies, but the large portion of this number might be insignificant.
Bitcoin remains the world’s largest cryptocurrency, and blockchain technology continues to disrupt many industries as its benefits are seemingly bringing great impact. Some countries have recently legalised the use of cryptocurrency—and one that has been all over the headlines was El Salvador which became the first country to make Bitcoin legal tender.
For many, cryptocurrency is seen as an exciting concept that has the potential to transform global banking for the better. While Bitcoin is built on strong, democratic ideals, it is still a technological and practical work in progress. It is important to remember that the bitcoin market is quite volatile. If you are starting your Bitcoin trading career, it is best recommended to keep yourself educated about the crypto world. For a great start in trading, here’s a Bitcoin trading platform that you may find helpful and convenient!