It all started 10 years ago with the notorious Satoshi Nakamoto publishing the infamous white paper (Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System) in November 2008. This was the theoretical idea which went on to create the pioneer Cryptocurrency known as the Bitcoin. Interestingly enough this happened right at the time of last major financial meltdown in global markets. Many are of the opinion that the high handedness, undue control and lack of transparency of the financial authorities like the Central banks, big corporate banks & regulatory authorities led to the financial disaster. The timing could be a pure coincidence or the work of “unknown forces” to bring about a change for the greater good.
Hard to believe that Bitcoin has been in existence for a decade. The Crypto kingpin has come a long way ever since its inception – with improvements in accessibility, scalability, lower cost of transactions, industry adoption & a host of technological upgrades. Bitcoin has seen lots of ups & downs in the 10 year period from major price corrections, volatility spikes, FUD overload, wrath of the skeptics, yet its resilience not only as an alternative form of digital payment but more importantly as the torch-bearer of a major paradigm shift has kept it on the path of improvement, growth & acceptability. Here are some of the interesting facts about Bitcoin:
- BTC started trading for $0.03 on the first Bitcoin exchange BitcoinMarket.com (now defunct) in March 2010.
- The smallest unit of Bitcoin is called Satoshi – named after its creator and the smallest unit is measured in 0.00000001 or one-hundred-millionth of a coin.
- While Bitcoin is seeing historically low volatility currently of the past 18 months, there was a period between Sep-Oct 2016 when the 30 day price change was a mere 0.81% marking the lowest volatile period of its lifespan.
- As you may or may not know that Bitcoin has a limit of only having 21 million coins in circulation, however a bizzare event took place on in August 2010 also known as the “value overflow incident” when a code vulnerability allowed someone to conduct a transaction which created 184 billion bitcoins – 184,467,440,737.09551616 coins, to be exact! The error was taken care of right away and the network returned to its normal operation with the specified limit of 21 million bitcoins.
- The biggest loss for Bitcoin came in the form a massive security breach of the Japan-based Bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox in 2014 resulting in a loss of 850,000 coins amounting to $473 million at the time.
- Bitcoin was not the first attempt to make a P2P digital currency, Wei Dai’s B-Money, Nick Szabo’s Bit Gold, Adam Back’s Hashcash & David Chaum’s DigiCash were precursors to Bitcoin, but they failed to gain traction due to the centralization of their proposed systems.
- Although Ethereum platform is synonymous with the functionality of executing smart contracts, Bitcoin also supports this advanced feature although in a limited form.
- And finally “Bitcoin Pizza day” is celebrated on May 22 every year to remember the first Bitcoin transaction when a Programmer Laszlo Hanyecz bought a couple of Pizzas for 10,000 coins in 2010.
Following are few infographics narrating a visual story of the price changes, circulation statistics & a brief timeline of Bitcoin.
The advent of Bitcoin has changed the Financial landscape of the world by challenging the traditional models. On the 10th birthday of pioneering digital coin, things are beginning to look up for Bitcoin & the associated Cryptocurrencies as the digital transformation gathers pace.