Cryptocurrencies have more and more media around the world, with high expectations, even in times of market setback. The various curiosities about bitcoin draw the attention of investors and speculators from around the world to carry trade or day trade investment positions.
Despite the short recent history of these assets, there are enough curiosities to be considered, from the own operationalization of cryptocurrency to the goods and services it was able to buy. Keep reading to learn the 8 curiosities about Bitcoin!
1. The ownerless cryptocurrency
This curiosity is quite interesting, but perhaps the best known of them. The creator of bitcoin is called Satoshi Nakamoto. However, he is not a person in itself, but a pseudonym. It is not known who its creators are, not even the number of people who developed the most well-known cryptocurrency in the world.
In fact, the name Satoshi Nakamoto means “clear-thinking” “inside the foundation”. Conspiracy theories, however, say the company could have been created by the union of Samsung, Toshiba, Nakamichi, and Motorola (SaToshi NakaMoto).
2. Goods acquired with bitcoins
Perhaps the reader will remember the news, as this is one of the most special curiosities about bitcoin on this list: a decade ago cryptocurrencies were not accepted anywhere as a payment method, and the first purchase of a commodity using bitcoin needed to be made by someone who trusted the potential valuation power.
This was done in May 2010, when two pizzas were bought for no less than 10,000 bitcoins (that’s right, ten thousand). With bitcoin, currently worth more than $ 5,000, each pizza came out for no less than $ 25,000,000.00. What an expensive pizza!
The date became so famous that May 22 is celebrated as the date of the first purchase with cryptocurrencies.
Many products can be purchased with bitcoins, for example, Lamborghini was the first company that sells cars to accept bitcoin as payment, while Dell and Microsoft also made transactions using bitcoin.
In some places in the USA, it is possible to rent limousines and even buy houses. It happened in 2013 in New York when someone put a house up for sale and also agreed to exchange it for bitcoins, meanwhile, in Germany, companies located in the Kreuzberg district of Berlin accept bitcoin as a payment method.
3. Bitcoin is not the first cryptocurrency created
Yes, it’s true. Bitcoin is actually the first cryptocurrency that became famous, but it was not the first one.
The first digital currency created was DigiCash which was developed by David Chaum and the first test was an electronic payment made in 1994. The computer scientist published an article in 1982 presenting an alternative to electronic transactions. At that time, the currency already used concepts such as blind signatures and public-key cryptography to allow anonymity of transactions. The company, however, was closed in the late 1990s, as it was difficult to get institutions to accept the currency.
4. Cost of transactions
Cryptocurrency transfers can have the advantage of cost savings and ease of no time restrictions. In the case of bitcoin, however, there is a certain energy cost, not paid for the consumer: a bitcoin transaction consumes almost 4000 times the energy of a credit card transaction.
5. Bitcoin is not always legal
In most countries, bitcoin is legalized or at least is in the process of being legalized, however, ten countries explicitly ban bitcoin. Among them are Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Vietnam, Bolivia, and Bangladesh.
Outside the legal issue, many central bankers are not opposed to new technologies but criticize the current cryptos for some issues, such as security, for example. Even with true and pertinent comments, one can always be left with doubts if there is no fear, also, with the diminishing importance of the currently existing fiat currencies.
6. Number of tokens
The value of the cryptocurrency is determined by supply and market demand for them. Its supply is limited, with less and less quantity being able to be mined.
7. 21 Million: this will be the maximum quantity of existing bitcoins.
The amount that can be mined decreases so much overtime that, even with more than 18 million bitcoins already mined in early 2020, which represents more than 85% of the total, its stability should only occur in 2140.
8. Public and private keys and the loss of bitcoins
The bitcoin transaction involves two keys, one public and the other private. The private key can be seen as the secret identity of the user who holds the digital currency. As this set of numbers and letters is the user’s identification for his wallet, in case of loss of this key, the owner is unable to access his own assets.
If you found it unlikely to happen, know that it is much more common than you think.
There are stories of the lucky ones who found keys on flash drives, for example. But they are few compared to the losses that have already been caused. It is estimated that more than 20% of all bitcoins have been forgotten by their owners.
Bonus: Energy expenditure for mining
Since bitcoin transactions require a lot of calculations, and the supply of mined bitcoin is decreasing, the expenditure of electricity to maintain the system must be very high.
There are many variables to determine how much energy is spent to obtain new bitcoins, such as consumption of each hardware, the supply of bitcoins, and the number of miners. The last one changes energy consumption because the algorithm was created to generate new cryptocurrencies for a certain period of time. With more miners, the calculations are adjusted to a higher level of difficulty, which requires greater computational effort.
Estimates are uncertain, but point to this energy expenditure reaches 1% of global consumption, according to the US Senate Committee Energy and Natural Resources, in 2018. Another study, from the University of Cambridge, says that bitcoin consumes more energy than countries like Switzerland, the Czech Republic, Austria, and Colombia.
Bitcoin presents a series of somewhat unusual stories. Millionaire values (at current prices) used to buy common goods, such as pizza, losses of gigantic values forgotten in HD’s and high consumption of energy for the maintenance of the market is shown as some of the most curious cases in the universe of cryptocurrencies.
In this article, we covered 8 curiosities about bitcoin. Do you know any more that are interesting to share? Write in the comments!