In short, my goal is to promote a better bitcoin.
The world of money holds little interest to me, except to practice frugality and wisdom, to cover my own needs and to help others. I feel I have a sacred trust to not waste money or overspend on myself. Other than these lifestyles which allow me to live with myself, I don't like to focus on money.
But bitcoin caught me off guard. I like to invest, but it wasn't that that attracted me to bitcoin. It was beautiful, simple and spawned innovation. It seemed to be led by people with a sincere desire to improve the world or our money system. It was new, exciting, and approachable.
Satoshi approached the impossible and won, like King Arthur pulling the sword from the stone. Actually, many impractical or technically impossible problems to solve, are just an opportunity to show ingenuity with clever-but-sufficient approximations. This is one of my favorite spaces in which to imagine and to think.
Altho comparing one to Arthur is much different than comparing Arthur to someone else.
But what caught me most was that someone would create this amazing thing and simply move on. He could be a leader, rich, or famous. All these tempt me to some degree. So why not Satoshi?
My grandfather was once one of the many vice-presidents of Bank of America, once Bank of Italy (in California). Basically, I learned from him the lessons of the depression: waste not, want not; and from him, to invest in mutual-type funds. If you're earning over 7%, there may be an unforeseen risk. He worked a few hundred yards and across the street from where Visa was invented. My grandmother has always loved math, writing, and art in nature.
My father earned his Masters at Stanford University in Computer Science. I grew up in Silicon Valley. We bought a computer when I was about 6. That changed our world for good. My brother and I taught ourselves to program in Basic in middle school.
About a century and a half ago, a man named John Horner farmed upper silicon valley. He wrote in his life-story about his rise to economical success and his loss of everything through fraud, poor monetary policy, and the money panic of 1857. California was recently flowing with gold, but many kept this in pocket during the panic, and because of low liquidity, gold/cash became king. John was forced to sell all his businesses and properties just to pay off his reasonable business debt. He survived the ordeal, but he and we are wiser for his story and loss. Two more panics hit the US in 73 and 93. Many of the problems of low liquidity were partially solved in California or handled on a local level by A G, founder of Bank of Italy. He helped San Francisco and California survive the 1929 crash and panic, mostly by holding enough liquid money and inspiring trust. Financial policy in the US has significantly changed since these times, with a departure from the gold-standard in the 30s and the adoption of new Horner-friendly policy.
My New Interest
A friend introduced me to Bitcoin, in 2015. We also discussed how to build a local currency (or service exchange), an interest of his. That got me thinking about how money can change or keep value based on how people use it. Also I realized, for the price I spend on lunch, or maybe a little more now, someone in India can begin a business that changes their lives forever and allows their children to attend school.
I've remembered since brief moments hearing of Bitcoin. I was present for example during a short conversation where bitcoin ideas were volunteered, including using hashes to validate integrity. We learned some of them already existed in bitgold and bitcoin. Previous to this, I only faintly remember someone may have jokingly asked me if I was Satoshi Nakamoto, but of course I had no idea what he was referring to.
Bitcoin is fast, easily transferable, hard to steal, and fun. It has little attached cost and can provide stability in unstable places. Perhaps, Bitcoin's greatest gift is that it allows families who cannot afford to bank to keep and transfer value through crypto-currency. It also is approachable, since it is all defined in code.
A New Day
Bitcoin reminds me of America just after the revolutionary war. It may take some work, to take these new ideas and build for the common man something useful that lasts. Or has Bitcoin already succeeded by forcing our financial world to improve?
Right now the burden of Bitcoin leadership is upon a few advocates and open-source programmers. Where will we end up, is an interesting and important question. Also, Bitcoin may not be the end-all of this type of currency. In the late 19th century, the railroad steamer was significantly improved by a simple engine innovation. (check source) Perhaps something similar will happen with Bitcoin.
Bitcoin, however, may be the perfect ground-level solution. Any better coin may be required to be built upon it, if something better is even possible. Or Bitcoin may eventually act like gold or silver in a coin, where the coin is given backed value by mixing valuable commodity with less precious metals.
In any case, Bitcoin acts more like a commodity, right now, than a currency. Despite this, it has little inherent worth besides as a secure network of information that cannot be forged. Because of the unique nature of this first network, however, many have chosen to see value, almost like typical currency, and trust that the value will continue.
Why Another Koin
I believe, however, there is room for another, more currency-like, koin. I hope this is a good cause and not a waste of time. I seek to solve some of the problems or insufficiencies I see with the current cryptos.
What happens if more and more people hold on to a koin? What remains liquid, seems to be more and more valuable, which may cause some to sell out, but also may cause hoarding and further instability. One way to deal with this is to support and encourage investing. Another solution is to create enough new money to keep the market gears oiled.
Should we have to use, for a currency, something which is constantly fluctuating and traded? Every time a currency's price is manipulated up or down, or just fluctuates, traders can make income by selling and buying, but it is the every-day user that pays. I bought and used Bitcoin, but in the process I ended up losing about 20% of my US dollar value, even though the price has ultimately gone up these last few months. This would be impossible with a level or stable currency. (Yeah, got unlucky)
Right now, if you have savings it is not difficult for the government to discover it. While this may be unsettling, it is very important for enforcing law. Perhaps when koin is mined or bought, pseudo-anonymity is the way to go. (That reminds me, when a car we sold was found abandoned 4 or so years later, the police gave us a call. Evidently, they like to inform the last 3 owners. We could avoid making that same sale again in the future.)
Another advantage of a level currency is that it is easier to invest. Those who invest are providing a very important service. (So are traders of commodities such as oil, but a discussion for another day.) Maybe users should be rewarded for investing and keeping available, rather than for holding.
Mining does not need to be as rewarded with koin, if less hashing can be done, and those performing work are rewarded in other ways.
To read my ideas on a new koin addressing these questions and opportunities, let me direct you to some previous work.
See An Idea, Koin Governance
Simple Random, Micro-finance, More Simple Random.