Watching the unbelievable explosion of the miracle, “cryptocurrency”, this last month was beautiful, and there’s far more to it than just the “overnight billionaires.”
The “Tipping Point” just flipped: digital money is in our future
If you have not already, very soon you will be hearing about the shift that just happened in the world of finance.
In fact, you will likely hear about it year after year from now into forever.
We don’t understand yet what exactly is happening, but we do know is that the world just changed, forever.
To explain, let me take you back in time, all the way to 2009.
The Beginnings of the Great “Recession”…
The unfortunately greedy behavior of certain Wall Street bankers tears apart the lives of hundreds of millions of people across the world.
Enough time has passed for us to watch those Wall Street bankers, and to see that despite all the pain they caused, they have learned…pretty much nothing.
Nobody responsible will go to jail.
Nobody responsible will lose their jobs.
Nobody responsible will even lose any money.
In fact, because they control all the rules, these criminals will now make even more money than ever.
A Gift from the Watcher in the Woods
Someone in particular is watching.
He goes by the name of Satoshi Nakamoto, though we don’t actually know who he is.
So little is known about this modern day, shall I say, “Shakespeare of currency and code,” that people are still arguing over whether or not he ever existed.
What we do know is that here in 2009, he releases a document on a small discussion website for people who are really good at math.
His idea is that with some impressive computer code and careful planning, he can make a kind of ‘digital dollar bill.’
The way this works is quite complicated. All you need to know for now is that his idea, whether he realized it or not, was perhaps as brilliant as the creation of the Internet itself.
It is so revolutionary, most people simply laugh it off as something that “would be really cool,” but could never actually be used in real life.
Some people think it’s worth exploring, however, and gradually, little by little, this digital dollar begins to appear on the Internet.
They call it, “BitCoin.”
It needs no banks. It needs no printers. It just…exists on the Internet, spread out among everyone who uses it.
At first it is used like Monopoly money for buying imaginary things in video games and the like.
A man by the name of Lazlo Haynecz is the person to use this BitCoin to make a purchase of something in the real world.
He asks for, of all things, a pizza, and he offers 10,000 of these little BitCoins in exchange.
Today, in 2017, those 10,000 bitcoins would be worth… ~$25,500,000.
That is not a typo.
And the value of those BitCoins may even keep rising.
I hope it was a good pizza.
Enter the Competition
Let’s go back now to around the year 2011.
As the value of a BitCoin continues to rise, others begin to see its potential.
Since Satoshi’s idea is freely available to all, they decide to write code for other kinds of digital currency.
First there’s LiteCoin. It states itself to be the “Silver” or second-tier version of digital currency.
Another is Ethereum, which can behave more like a robot, taking orders and executing certain actions when it is properly paid.
More and more appear these competitors we now call “alt coins.”
In the circles of the technocracy of Silicon Valley, Pittsburgh, and Boston, people begin to dream.
They dream of a world where Wall Street, and even the Federal Reserve Bank in Washington, will no longer be able to take advantage of the rest of us.
Where people can print their own money, and use it to pay others across borders.
And, crazy enough, today it is actually starting to work.
This last month, these “alt coin” digital currencies have skyrocketed, following right in the footsteps of BitCoin.
People who understood this dream and invested early are seeing returns of 100000%.
Again, that is not a typo.
Actually, many who did it “right” are seeing even higher rewards.
It is simply remarkable.
While many of these people are the technological kings of Silicon Valley who are leaders in the technological revolution of our day, many others are not.
The commoners are simply people who understood the dream early, and are currently reaping the spoils.
I am not one of these kind of dreamers–that is, I did not recognize the idea’s potential in time to be one of these lucky insta-millionaires.
Instead, as my mind slowly awoke these last few weeks to this dream, I’ve also been subject to all the travails so common to man when he finds that he only just missed the opportunity of a lifetime.
“Why didn’t I recognize? Several of my classmates at Carnegie Mellon were talking about ‘cryptocurrency.’ Why didn’t I pay more attention?!” I ask.
Those self-reflections are sometimes meaningless and counter-productive, when I’m beating myself up about it.
But, not all this self-reflection I’ve had as I’ve watched the creative chaos is harmful.
Since I cannot reap the financial rewards, my mind has been forced to look for other small treasures that can be found.
The one that I want to share with you centers around the miracle of Compound Interest.
I want to tell you about it, and since this post is getting too long, I’ll save it for my next post.
p.s. Have you been paying attention to the rise of cryptocurrency? If so, what are your thoughts! I would love to hear your stories. Or, is this the first time you’ve heard of it? If so, let me know in the comments and, if you’re interested, I can point you to some fun discoveries.