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A new investigation on BitcoinTalk is aiming to celebrate the contributions of those who helped Bitcoin take off—but didn’t get recognized for their work.
Started by Aricoin—the team behind the eponymous cryptocurrency designed for easier payments—it hopes to unearth those who worked on the Bitcon protocol before 2012 and made crucial contributions.
“Everyone has heard of Satoshi, most have heard of Gavin Andresen. Jeff Garzik, Pieter Wuille and other early contributors are well known to the core community, but we're looking for other early contributors that have almost been forgotten about,” Aricoin wrote on BitcoinTalk, adding, “We are trying to compile a list of developers and community members that have contributed a lot to Bitcoin so we can integrate them into an upcoming project.”
Aricoin has already gathered a list of contributors, based on their entries on GitHub, a hosting platform for open-source files. The team wants to know who sent the first bug reports, who pushed the first releases of the Bitcoin code and who was the first to uncover major attacks.
The team has already found one tidbit of information. Developer Mats Henricson was the first person to give Bitcoin a public review on SourceForge, they claim.
So far, replies have mostly focused on individuals who are already well known. Three BitcoinTalk members pointed to Hal Finney’s contributions to the Bitcoin ecosystem. He was the first person to receive a Bitcoin transaction from Satoshi Nakamoto, the pseudonymous inventor of Bitcoin. However, Aircoin is looking for developers that are less well known.
Who created the Bitcoin logo?
One response pointed to the pseudonymous person who created the current Bitcoin logo. According to legend, BitBoy appeared on the BitcoinTalk forum with the logo in hand, which everyone quickly adopted. He last posted on the forum in February 2014, although was active on the forum as recently as June 22, 2019.
The post said, “Agreed. While not code, would add bitboy. The logo was a fundamental marketing masterpiece for Bitcoin adoption.”
Another response highlighted the contributions of Ray Dillinger, who is now head of algorithms research at nE12.
In a blog post, Dillinger said, “In November of 2008, I did a code review and security audit for the block chain portion of the Bitcoin source code. The late Hal Finney did code review and audit for the scripting language, and we both looked at the accounting code. Satoshi Nakamoto, the pseudonymous architect and author of the code, alternated between answering questions and asking them.”
Is it right to name Bitcoin’s early developers?
While some in the community argued that many of the original contributors were anonymous and wanted to stay that way, others appreciated Aricoin’s efforts.
“I am glad someone has taken the time to acknowledge some folks who really help in the growth and development of bitcoin,” said “joinfree,” a senior member on the forum.
Oh, and there was one more suggestion:
“Napoleon - he invented central bank to finance the Napoleonic wars. Without central banks, there wouldn't be fiat currencies, and without fiat currencies, there wouldn't be Bitcoin,” said one helpful commentator. “Ability is nothing without opportunity,” as someone else once said.