Singapore, SINGAPORE – The first lines of code were committed to the Bitcoin blockchain on 3rd January 2009. These lines of code, known as the “genesis block,” are credited to the anonymous founder Satoshi Nakamoto. Depending on how you look at it, you might consider today as the official day in which Bitcoin turns ten.
Bitcoin came into existence on paper on Halloween 2008, however, the real use of the cryptocurrency came on 3rd January 2009. On this date, the Genesis Block was mined and the miner was rewarded with 50 BTC. Today, the reward would be worth about $191,350, but at the time its value was inestimable.
Bitcoin’s first ever recorded trading price was noted on Mar. 17, 2010, on the now-defunct trading platform bitcoinmarket.com, at a value of $0.003. The first “real” transaction however occurred on May 22nd, 2010, infamously remembered as “Bitcoin Pizza Day” when Laszlo Hanyecz purchased two pizzas for 10,000 Bitcoin, equivalent to US$30 at the time. At press time, that accounts for US$37.8 million.
Believed to be a primary impetus for the creation of the revolutionary digital currency, the financial crisis of 2007-9 was thus linked from the outset to the first ever Bitcoin transaction.
Famously, when the first block was mined, Satoshi Nakamoto embedded this message into its Coinbase:
“The Times 03/Jan/2009 Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks”
To mark the occasion, crypto exchange BitMex has an advertisement on the front page of The Times thanking Satoshi Nakomoto for Bitcoin. The choice to publish this in The Times, as most could tell, is more than a little tongue in cheek:
Happy 10th Birthday Bitcoin! pic.twitter.com/DpOPjojsOd
— BitMEX Research (@BitMEXResearch) January 2, 2019
The media has declared Bitcoin time numerous times, and yet it perseveres. It is impossible to gauge where all this will lead, and the endgame is speculative at best. Only thing to do is buckle up for the ride.