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Issue #441: It's timechain, not blockchain

Issue #441: It's timechain, not blockchain

Mar 15, 2019
Marty's Ƀent

Issue #441: It's timechain, not blockchain

What you're looking at below is a section of notes in a copy of the pre-release source code of Bitcoin that Satoshi shared with a few reviewers before mining the Genesis block in January 2009.

Rough draft of the Bitcoin source code

This copy of the code Satoshi had reviewed by some cypherpunks before officially launching had was shared on in 2013 and resurfaced by Francis Pouliot earlier this week on Twitter. As you can see from his notes in the code, Satoshi thought of Bitcoin as a "timechain" and not a "blockchain", a misnomer applied to Bitcoin by us lowly plebs after it had been released.

Very interesting thing to note, especially considering the popularization, commoditization, and bastardization of the word "blockchain" over the course of the last decade. How ironic is it that the one word that every marketer, snake oil salesman, and out of touch politician or corporate board member alike has taken and run with, spending an untold amount of millions to craft a narrative around, is a complete and utter sham that doesn't aptly describe what its creator intended. Truly poetic. Everyone and their mother is in a race to craft a "blockchain strategy", sprinting blind into a foreign arena attempting to justify the exploration of and (more importantly) budget for a word that has been misapplied since it entered our lexicon. You freaks understand what I mean when I say I believe our society is becoming more detached from reality than ever? The evidence is everywhere.

With all of that disconnection from reality stuff aside, you freaks should go peep Francis' thread as he does an incredible job of surfacing some of the best gems from the pre-release version of the source code, including the fact that Satoshi envisioned everyone calling "sats" "cents", which I did not know until a couple of hours ago. Are we as disconnected from reality as the blockchainers of the world are for pushing "sats" instead of "cents"?! Maybe, but tbqh, "cents" would have been confusing af when in the wild. Especially considering the public conscious has been conditioned for a century to associate one cent as a denomination of the US Dollar. Would have been terrible for adoption and use in the wild.

Lastly, and probably most importantly to note, the existence of this pre-release code and the fact that we know a good amount of people had access to it, reviewed it and provided feedback may mean that there was more initial participants mining bitcoin in the early days than we previously thought. Making bitcoin more distributed than is widely believed.

Bitcoin's history, a fascinating story with many nuggets still to be unearthed.

Final thought...

The art of the handwritten letter is an art I recommend one should master and practice. Goes a long way.

Enjoy your weekend, freaks.


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