Bitcoin has been around for a decade now, and during that time, it became widely popular across the globe. The very idea of digital assets that aren’t governed by any central banks or governments was (and still is) quite appealing to many people.
Nowadays, Bitcoin has inspired a lot of entrepreneurs to consider the idea of decentralizing, which is why we have over a thousand different cryptocurrencies on the market today.
But how much do you really know about Bitcoin? There’s more to it than just being the most valuable cryptocurrency, that’s for sure. So, here are some interesting facts regarding Bitcoin that should definitely interest you if you want to invest in cryptocurrency.
Bitcoin was created in 2008, using the technology called the blockchain. It was first mentioned in a whitepaper called “Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System” created by a person or a group of people named Satoshi Nakamoto. In 2009, Bitcoin was released to the public as an open-source program.
The mysterious creator
Satoshi’s identity remains unknown to this day. Shortly after revealing their invention to the public, they disappeared off the grid completely and are no longer available through any means of communication.
The public speculated about Nakamoto’s identity and whereabouts for years naming several figures to be the mastermind behind the alias. So far, it didn’t budge. The latest theory (bordering on tinfoil hat level of conspiracy theorizing) is that companies Samsung, Toshiba, Nakamichi, and Motorola are behind the Bitcoin. Of course, there’s zero evidence to support this theory.
The world’s most expensive pizza
Back in 2010, two of Papa John’s pizzas were ordered and paid for using Bitcoin. It was the first-ever recorded monetary Bitcoin transaction. The sad thing for the guy who bought the pizzas is that they cost 10,000 BTC. However, it was a truly happy day for Papa John.
In any event, every May 22nd since then has been celebrated as the international Bitcoin pizza day. What a way to remind the guy that he spent a fortune on two pizzas. Back then, the value of Bitcoins spent was $41. In April 2017, the same amount was worth $15.5 million.
A finite number of coins
How does one obtain Bitcoins? Well, you could simply buy them, but that’s a major undertaking at the moment. The most popular way to get your hands on some Bitcoins is through efficient cryptocurrency mining.
However, there’s a catch. The fact of the matter is that there are only 21 million Bitcoins in existence and 85% of them have already been mined. Fortunately, it’s estimated that it will take around 100 more years to reach the final number.
All-time high and low
In 2017, Bitcoin’s price started around $800 and it went up until it reached the all-time high price of $19.783 on December 17th. People went crazy and even took out mortgages to invest in Bitcoin. However, two months later, the price fell to $6,200, causing a lot of people to go bankrupt. Ever since then, a lot of people lost their trust in cryptocurrencies and consider Bitcoin and its fellow digital assets a scam.
Cannot be hacked but it can be lost
Bitcoin is based on the blockchain technology that’s renowned for being impossible to hack. Be that as it may, you can still lose your Bitcoins if you’re not careful enough. For blockchain to be hacked, a cybercriminal would have to take control of the majority of nodes at once within the system, which is impossible to do with today’s computing power.
But that’s why hackers target your private keys. No keys mean no Bitcoin ownership. Another unfortunate soul, similar to the pizza guy, threw away his old hard drive when he was cleaning out his desk. The drive held keys to around 7,500 Bitcoins. Basically, he threw out around $25 million.
Not as private as you think
What’s especially attractive about cryptos is that you can remain anonymous when trading online. Well, that’s what a lot of people believe, anyway. Bitcoins aren’t as private as you might believe. The fact of the matter is that your Bitcoin public address is associated with you and thus your activities can be traced. Go figure.
The main reason is that Bitcoin’s blockchain is transparent and everyone who wants can read it. This is how the guy who owned the Silk Road – one of the most popular black markets online – got busted. The market operated by trading in Bitcoins exclusively. You can, however, hide your transactions by using a VPN (Virtual Private Network) connection and by using more private Bitcoin wallets.
Even though it’s considered a scam and whatnot by a lot of people, Bitcoin is still one of the most popular and most valuable digital assets today. It paved the way for a whole new crypto market to emerge and give investors more options. What the future holds for Bitcoin and other cryptos remains to be seen, however.
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