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Satoshi Nakamoto is the mysterious inventor of Bitcoins: a digital currency that is regulated by an online encryption protocol, and not by a central authority.
Nov 08: He posted his original research paper online, that explained the basic principles of Bitcoin.
Apri 09: The original Bitcoin network appeared, with help from numerous online volunteers.
Mid 2010: Nakamoto stopped having as much of an input into the Bitcoin network.
Apr 2011: Once contacted online, Nakamoto replied saying he had ‘moved onto other things’, and then stopped replying altogether
His contact email was from a free German website, and his name a pseudonym: Nakamoto knew what he was doing, and covered his tracks well.
His real identity has since been one of the Bitcoin’s communities’ most enduring mysteries, and they have responded with a number of ideas.
Here are the most popular ones:
Guess Who Options:
– Mathematical genius specialising in number theory
– Based in Japan
– Grew up in the US, so is fluent in English
– When he has made mathematical discoveries in the past, he has a tendency to release it publicly on the internet, not through academic channels, just like Nakamoto did
– Top Computer Science student at Trinity College, Dublin
– One of only a few UK based candidates, and Nakamoto referenced a Times newspaper article in the coding of the first collection of Bitcoins, his online comments were normally made after working hours in the UK, and he used British spelling
– The New Yorker newspaper did some research into Nakamoto, and decided it was most likely to be Clear
– Economic Sociologist, who used to be a video game programmer
– Based in Finland
– Has done a lot of well documented research into virtual currencies
Neal King, Vladimir Oksman & Charles Bry:
– A group of Computer Scientists
– Based in the UK, but Bry travelled to Finland a couple of months before the domain name was registered there.
– Released a patent application using very similar phrasing to Nakamoto’s original Bitcoin paper, 72 hours after the Bitcoin domain name was established, and all three have filed other patents in similar areas
– Those who were in email contact with Nakamoto before he disappeared said that his replies were infrequent, almost as if a group of people were checking the email only intermittently.
– Computer Scientist
– Based in Finland, where the Bitcoin website was first registered
– Made the first ever Bitcoin transaction, created the user interface, and is a well-known developer from early on in the project
– Was removed from the list of project developers on the Bitcoin website, around the same time Nakamoto stopped replying to emails
– Creator of Mt Gox, the largest Bitcoin marketplace, and Ripple, a similar digital currency
– American, but has a love of Japanese culture, so it would make sense for him to adopt a Japanese pseudonym
Crypto Mano Group:
– Consists of Donal O’Mahony, Hitesh Tewari, Michael Peirce and previously mentioned, Michael Clear
– A group of Computer Scientists, all with connections to Trinity College, Dublin
– Based in Ireland
– Published a book entitled ‘Electronic Payment Systems of E-Commerce’ in 2009, and numerous other paper on Computer Science
Samsung, Toshiba, Nakamichi & Motorola:
– Four technology companies
– All based in Japan
– The four companies would definitely have enough knowledgable people working for them to create such a concept, and cover their tracks well
– As with most mysteries, there is always the belief that the CIA is somehow involved.
– Japanese names are presented with the surname first, this would make it Nakamoto Satoshi.
– In Japanese, Nakamoto means ‘central origin’, while Satoshi means ‘clear thinking, quick witted, wise’ i.e intelligent. The name can therefore be translated to mean ‘Central Intelligent’.