3 - 5 minute read
Looking back at the last decade of the advancements in technology and the emergence of cryptocurrencies, one is left questioning: was Bitcoin an invention or a discovery? The concept of decentralized finance (DeFi) was groundbreaking when it was first revealed in 2009. And it has since sparked numerous debates and discussions about its role in society. Some believe it was the result of human effort and ingenuity, while others argue it was a discovery; waiting to be unearthed in the vastness of the internet. Regardless of how you view it, it’s clear that Bitcoin has had a major impact on the world and will likely continue to change the future of finance and technology.
The History of Bitcoin
Satoshi Nakamoto’s late 2000s white paper proposed a decentralised digital money. After mining the first Bitcoin blockchain block in January 2009, Nakamoto sent 10 Bitcoins to developer Hal Finney in the first Bitcoin transaction.
Over time, businesses and individuals accepted Bitcoin as payment. In 2011, Mt. Gox, the first major cryptocurrency exchange, allowed users to buy and sell Bitcoins with traditional currencies. Popularity increased Bitcoin’s value. In 2013, Bitcoin reached $1,000, and it kept rising. Since 2017, Bitcoin’s price has fluctuated but remained desired.
Bitcoin has suffered regulatory issues, security breaches, and negative media coverage, but its promise to change money and financial transactions has garnered interest. Bitcoin continues to be widely recognised in the area of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology.
The Characteristics of Discovery and Invention
But how can invention be distinguished from discovery? A discovery is anything that is unearthed, but an invention is something that is made or generated by humans. Because a person (or group of people) used their knowledge and abilities to build Bitcoin, some claim that it was an innovation. Others claim that Bitcoin was just lying in wait in the vastness of the internet.
Use of Blockchain Technology
One could claim that Bitcoin is an invention due to the usage of blockchain technology, which creates a decentralised, secure ledger that records all transactions. This device requires a tremendous amount of inventiveness and human labour to develop and implement. The idea of a decentralised digital money, however, might also be argued to have been in the internet’s infrastructure and was only made possible by blockchain technology. In this sense, Bitcoin may be viewed as a discovery as opposed to an invention.
The Future of Bitcoin
Bitcoin has fundamentally altered how we think about money and technology, whether it is viewed as a discovery or an innovation. Inspiring numerous debates and arguments about its place in society, it has created new channels for financial transactions. Only time will tell how it will progress. Although some believe its worth and popularity will only increase, others caution that it is still a relatively new and unproven technology. Without a doubt, Bitcoin has had, and will continue to have, a global influence.
In the end, it all comes down to one’s perspective as to whether Bitcoin is viewed as an invention or a discovery. Both sides have valid points, and the question ultimately comes down to how one views the contribution of creativity and human labour to the invention of Bitcoin. Bitcoin has had a significant impact on the world and will continue to have an impact on technology and finance in the future.