The Path to Bitcoin: Bitcoin White Paper

Bitcoin was first heard of on October 31, 2008, in an e-mail sent to a cryptography messaging group by the person or people under the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto. Nakamoto, who included the technical details of the blockchain in the Bitcoin White Paper, proposed a reliable online payment method without the need to trust any central authority. Bitcoin was the name of both this new payment system and the currency of this system. Although the title of the document started with Bitcoin, the word Bitcoin was not used in the document.

The original of the Bitcoin White Paper is available at https://www.btcturk.com/bitcoin.pdf; You can find its Turkish translation at https://cdn.btcturk.com/bitcoinTR.pdf.

Details about the currency of Bitcoin, which was proposed as a payment method, emerged later. It was not easy for Bitcoin, whose supply is limited to 21 million units, how it will be produced, how it will be released, and the production conditions of a certain currency, to become as popular as it is today.

Satoshi Nakamoto created Genesis Block on January 3, 2009, and with the 1st block produced 6 days later, the Bitcoin blockchain started to work as non-stop. The first Bitcoin transfer took place on January 12, 2009, between Satoshi Nakamoto and computer scientist Hal Finney.

When the exchange, named New Liberty Standard, listed the first Bitcoin rate on October 5, 2009, a full 1,309.03 Bitcoin could be bought with $1. Because at that time, it was very easy to produce Bitcoin and Bitcoin had no purchasing power as a currency. On May 22, 2010, Laszlo Hanyecz bought 2 pizzas for 10,000 BTC and changed the fate of Bitcoin. About nine months after this purchase, the price of Bitcoin rose to the level of $1.

One advantage, after Bitcoin began to be accepted as a medium of exchange like a currency, was that its transfers took place anonymously, attracting the attention of online marketplaces selling illegal products, known as “black markets”. Although the FBI closed the illegal marketplace called Silk Road in 2013 and seized approximately $3.6 million worth of Bitcoin, this event did not prevent Bitcoin from being associated with illegal payments for a long time. In February 2014, cyber attackers attacked Mt. Gox cryptocurrency trading platform and stole 744,000 Bitcoins. This was recorded as one of the biggest hits in Bitcoin history.

The adoption of Bitcoin as the official payment method by Japan in April 2017 opened the doors of a new era for Bitcoin. The increase in the price of Bitcoin by about 21 times in 2017 caused Bitcoin to be heard by much wider masses.

Although it is criticized from time to time for its high volatile price movements, Bitcoin has the functions of being the unit of account of the fiat currencies, being a means of exchange, and a store of value. Recently, El Salvador has declared Bitcoin the second official currency after the Dollar, giving Bitcoin the function of being a tool of economic policy. In addition, Bitcoin has all the features of fiat currencies such as portability, durability, divisibility, homogeneity, and inimitability. Bitcoin is more portable than money, can be divided into more parts, and unlike money, it cannot be counterfeited.

Bitcoin, which was proposed as a payment method with a message sent to the e-mail group on October 31, 2008 by Satoshi Nakamoto, is mentioned together with classical financial instruments such as gold, foreign exchange and stocks in economic news after 13 years. Bitcoin, which only technology enthusiasts were aware of 13 years ago, is today accepted as the official currency of a country.

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