Introduction to Bitcoin

Many people do not like Bitcoin. Many more know little or nothing about it. Even I know relatively little about it in terms of all that there is to know, but I understand enough to feel like I get it. By that I mean that I feel I understand the fundamental power of its innovation and the magnitude of its potential. The below linked speech by Andreas Antonopoulos was what flipped the switch for me, from not getting it to getting it. It is the best introduction to Bitcoin that I have heard, by far, and you do not need any prior knowledge in technology, finance, or otherwise to gain understanding from it.

Andreas’ speech ends at the 25 minute mark with a Q&A session thereafter. I recommend you find a time when you have at least 25 minutes if not the full 37 to watch or listen.

I have included at the end of this post my brief notes exactly as I wrote them while watching the speech. It was not the first time that I had watched it. Since my notes are copied verbatim, they will not be very useful to you as a substitution for watching the video. They may be helpful for the purpose of recollection and as an imperfect summarization that you can refer back to after watching.

Here is the YouTube link to Andreas’ speech: “Introduction to Bitcoin”

If at any point after watching the video or otherwise you become interested in buying Bitcoin but do not know how, I have used Coinbase to buy mine. It is very easy and can be done in well under the time it takes to watch Andreas’ speech. You may click this link to get started. It is my referral link and gives you and I both a $10 bonus in Bitcoin when you buy $100 or more on Coinbase. Another popular alternative to buy Bitcoin that I would trust is the Cash App, but I have not yet used it to do so myself.

I do not recommend beginning with an amount invested more than you are comfortable losing. I also do not recommend increasing your amount invested without increasing your understanding of the assets you are investing in and reasonably gaining conviction in the future value of those assets. I will note in writing that I do not believe Bitcoin’s value is currently the lowest it will ever be. Thus, do not blame me if your investment becomes worth less than the amount you invest. I am telling you quite bluntly that if you were to invest at the time I am writing this, I believe it would. That said, I am holding my investment in Bitcoin primarily because I believe it is many times closer to the lowest it will be in the next decade or two than it is to the highest it will be in that time, in terms of its percent change in value. If you are going to invest, please do so for your own reasons and acknowledge that it is at your own risk.

Notes: Introduction to Bitcoin

  • Platform of trust
  • It is the concept of decentralization applied to the human communication of value
  • Currency is just the first application of it
  • Money pre-existed writing, first writing was tallying money
  • Barter -> abstractions -> precious metals -> paper money -> plastic money -> network money
  • Bitcoin is the first system of money not controlled by a single entity, completely decentralized
  • Will do for money what internet did for communication
  • Will not be embraced right away. Think of first person to receive certificate instead of gold
  • Unifies systems of money like internet did for communication
  • Billions will leap frog from unbanked to Bitcoin
  • Kids born today will never have a bank account or use paper cash (like never drive car)
  • Don’t need to explain to Argentinian, Bitcoin volatile like this [drawing of a jagged line going up and to the right], Argentinian peso like this [drawing of a jagged line going down and to the right]
  • Volume goes up, volatility goes down
  • Hacks come from trying to centralize the decentralized property