Satoshi’s Focus on a “Transactional Currency”

Does it Matter?

Does It Matter from an Economic Perspective?

Economics is solely a function of the appraisals of acting humans who appraise goods subjectively, based on what they believe the goods in question can help them achieve. What the inventor of a good intended or how that good was created bears little on how those human actors will make use of and appraise the goods in question. Examples abound in everyday products on the shelves around us.

Does It Matter from a Technical Perspective?

No. Bitcoin has matured, been battle-tested and hardened over 11 years in the FLOSS wild. It is a different animal, is subjected to relentless peer-review and NASA-level, ultra-conservative coding standards and practices. Users of Bitcoin fully rely on the technical competence of a tremendously decentralized network of open source developers — not the technical competence of Satoshi. For better or worse (I think much better) — that’s how it is.

Satoshi: My Own Thoughts

I preface this part by reiterating my general lack of interest in this topic due to the lack of bearing it has on the economics or technicals of Bitcoin.

Do I Have Doubts About Satoshi’s Technical Competence?

No. In my opinion, as a programmer of over 30 years who has implemented Satoshi’s design in order to learn about it, I am dumbfounded by the genius of the design and most impressed by his ability to get it (mostly) right in the first iteration. I’ll leave it at that.

What Is My Take on Satoshi’s Intentions (Hopes?) For Bitcoin’s Economic Role?

Here I believe that it is most useful to consider the fact that Satoshi was a Cypherpunk (and so he subscribes to Cypherpunk ethos) and, within that context, the message he sent by embedding the infamous headline in the genesis block. This was him screaming loudly and clearly that Bitcoin was intended as a solution to central banks manipulating money supplies: a hard money (store of value focused).

Why Did Satoshi Talk about Transactions and Cash?

First, I think it’s crucial in understanding this to think about Bitcoin from the perspective of a programmer / designer whose biggest hurdle in creating this hard money is how to transact in such a way that one can independently verify that the money supply was not monkeyed with by solving the “double spend” problem. Clearly if one could not transact with Bitcoin, it would not be able to function as a hard money — or, indeed, any kind of money. From this perspective, of course the focus of the design and the code must be on the transactions, because this was the hurdle to overcome and the most complicated piece of the design/implementation.


I’ll end by saying that if the greatest gift that Satoshi gave to the world is Bitcoin, then the second greatest gift he gave us was disappearing. People have a habit of looking for leaders and figures to follow. Such a tendency is toxic to The Decentralized Technology.

 by the author.



Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store
B.J. Dweck

B.J. Dweck

Bitcoin Coding, Custody Solutions & Seminars | Austrian Econ | Voluntarism | Authentic Parenting | NVC | PET | Project-Based Learning | Recovering Carb Addict