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10 Years Ago Today, Hal Finney Started 'Running Bitcoin'

Hal Finney is one of the people many suspected to be Satoshi Nakamoto. A long-time cryptographer and cypherpunk, Finney was the first person ever to receive a Bitcoin transaction. From Satoshi Nakamoto. He was enthusiastic about the project from the beginning. He posted the first known tweet about Bitcoin ten years ago today:

Running bitcoin — halfin (@halfin) January 11, 2009

Part of the speculation about Hal Finney being Satoshi Nakamoto was due to the fact that Dorian Satoshi Nakamoto lived in the same town as him for ten years. Both Finney and Dorian Nakamoto denied involvement in the creation of Bitcoin.

Today, tweets about Bitcoin number in the thousands. At the time, however, Finney might have just been trying to get his followers involved in the project. Early messages about the cryptocurrency were very inviting. No one had any clue that it would become an economic force global markets are still trying to adapt to.

When mainstream financial analysts first came across Bitcoin, they often dismissed it as something that couldn’t possibly stand the test of time. Today, however, no one thinks cryptocurrencies are going anywhere, although the mantra of “Bitcoin maximalism” seems to be fading as dozens of other cryptos develop strong market capitalizations.

Eleven days later, Finney tweeted that anonymity was lacking in Bitcoin:

Looking at ways to add more anonymity to bitcoin — halfin (@halfin) January 21, 2009 Foresight in Environmental Impact of Bitcoin Mining

Six days after that, Finney’s belief is growing. He wonders about the environmental implications of crypto mining.

Thinking about how to reduce CO2 emissions from a widespread Bitcoin implementation — halfin (@halfin) January 27, 2009

This is years before environmentalists would decry the energy usage of Bitcoin mining. The difficulty of the network at the time of that tweet was still 1.00, and most blocks were empty save for their mining rewa...

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