Below is a list of all the people who have been called Satoshi Nakamoto. Are you among them? Well, on a long enough timeline, you might one day be. Heck, you might even think you are Satoshi.
1 – Nick Szabo – Blogger Skye Grey linked Nick Szabo to the Bitcoin white paper. Szabo is a long-time decentralized currency philosopher and even published a paper entitled “bit gold” which many consider a precursor to Bitcoin. This has nothing to do with the recently launched BitGold. Szabo has denied being Satoshi Nakamoto. Nathaniel Popper wrote in the New York Times that “the most convincing evidence pointed to a reclusive American man of Hungarian descent named Nick Szabo.”
2 – Dorian Nakamoto – This Nakamoto is perhaps the best known mistaken Satoshi Nakamoto. In March 2014, Leah McGrath published an article in Newsweek doxxing Dorian Prentice Satoshi Nakamoto, a Japanese American man living in California, as Satoshi Nakamoto. Goodman used his name, as well as circumstantial evidence, as proof for his involvement in the Bitcoin project. Nakamoto worked as a systems engineer on defense projects and other projects. Nakamoto did identify as a libertarian, according to his daughter. Goodman claimed that Nakamoto said, “I am no longer involved in that and I cannot discuss it. It’s been turned over to other people. They are in charge of it now. I no longer have any connection.” Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department later confirmed this quote – their deputies had been present at the time. In a later interview, Dorian, alongside Andreas Antonopoulos, denied any connection to Bitcoin and claimed he had not heard of it until Leah’s article. Many bitcoiners pooled donations to compensate him for his inconvenience.
3 – Hal Finney – Finney is in many ways a hero to the Bitcoin community. He was the first person to run a Bitcoin node after Satoshi Nakamoto. He busied himself by supplying bug reports and helping to make improvements. Individuals have suggested that Hal Finney is Satoshi Nakamoto. Forbes journalist Andy Greenberg uncovered that Finney lived a mere few blocks from Dorian Nakamoto’s home. Greenberg tasked a writing analysis consultancy to compare Finney’s writing with Nakamoto’s and they claimed it was the closest of any they had come across. Hal wrote in a well-known BitcoinTalk post:
Speaking of heirs, I got a surprise in 2009, when I was suddenly diagnosed with a fatal disease. I was in the best shape of my life at the start of that year, I’d lost a lot of weight and taken up distance running. I’d run several half marathons, and I was starting to train for a full marathon. I worked my way up to 20+ mile runs, and I thought I was all set. That’s when everything went wrong.
My body began to fail. I slurred my speech, lost strength in my hands, and my legs were slow to recover. In August, 2009, I was given the diagnosis of ALS, also called Lou Gehrig’s disease, after the famous baseball player who got it.
Hal has been cryopreserved.
4 – John Nash – Nash is believed by many Bitcoiners to have, at least, heavily influenced Bitcoin. Some even believe he is Satoshi Nakamoto. Nash is considered one of the greatest mathematicians of the 20th century, known mostly for his work in game theory, as well his personal struggle with paranoid schizophrenia. His life was brought to the big screen in 2001 Oscar-winning film “A Beautiful Mind,” starring Russell Crowe and Jennifer Connelly, which portrayed John’s mental illness and the accomplishments which earned him the 1994 Nobel Prize in Economics. He sometimes wrote about his distaste for Keynesian economics as many Bitcoiners do.
5 – Vili Lehdonvirta – The New Yorker suggested that Lehdonvirta, a Finnish economist, could be Satoshi Nakamoto. Lehdonvirta denied being the inventor of Bitcoin.
6 – Michael Clear – The New Yorker also claimed Clear could be Satoshi Nakamoto. Clear, a graduate student in cryptography as Trinity College in Dublin, was named the top computer-science undergraduate at Trinity in 2008. He started working for Allied Irish Banks on their currency-trading software and co-authored an academic paper on peer-to-peer technology. He denied vehemently being Satoshi Nakamoto.
7 – Neal King and others – Fast Company’s Adam Penenberg suggested Neal King, Vladimir Oksam and Charles Bry as possible inventors of Bitcoin. The publication cited an encryption patent application filed by the three on August 15, 2008, a mere 72 hours before the bitcoin.org domain name was registered. The patent application described networking and encryption protocols comparable to Bitcoin. The phrase “computationally impractical to reverse” appeared in both the patent application and the Bitcoin white paper. Penenberg came to his conclusion by typing unique phrases which appeared in the Bitcoin white paper into Google to see where they had before appeared.
9 – The National Security Agency – A common hypothesis submitted by Bitcoiners posits the National Security Agency (NSA), or some other government alphabet agency, as Satoshi Nakamoto. Many disagree. Is it true?
10 – Wei Dai – Dai, a cypherpunk and 1990s proponent of digital currency, has been said to be Satoshi Nakamoto. He came up with a so-called B-money proposal, which many see as a precursor idea to Bitcoin.
Some believe an unknown group of people is responsible for Bitcoin. Academia has accepted that there is a chance the famed William Shakespeare was not one individual but rather a roundtable of writers and intellectuals who created the works associated with William Shakespeare. Many people have insinuated this is what they believe happened with Bitcoin: Satoshi Nakamoto is not one person, but a group of people. Then again, others think we are all Satoshi.
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