Apr 1, 2020
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The Many Facts Pointing to Wei Dai Being Satoshi

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The Many Facts Pointing to Wei Dai Being Satoshi

Satoshi Nakamoto has been an enigma for well over a decade and there’s been a number of suspects and self-styled Bitcoin inventors. One particular suspect is the computer engineer Wei Dai, the creator of the b-money system and the Crypto++ cryptographic library. Since the Bitcoin network was launched in 2009, a number of people have had suspicions that Wei Dai could have played the role of Nakamoto.

Also Read: The Many Facts Pointing to Ian Grigg Being Satoshi

Wei Dai and Satoshi Nakamoto

We don’t know who is behind the real identity of the person or group of people that created Bitcoin. The anonymous creator(s) not only invented the concept of cryptocurrency, but also managed to keep the identity of Satoshi Nakamoto a secret for more than 11 years. In our fifth installment of the “Many Facts” series, we discussed how Dorian Nakamoto was mistaken for being the anonymous Bitcoin creator in 2014. The following is the sixth installment in the series, offering a comprehensive look at the circumstantial evidence that might point to Wei Dai being Satoshi. Dai is a well known cypherpunk and he is referenced in the citations section at the end of the Bitcoin white paper. Over the last decade, a number of speculators have assumed Dai might be the cryptocurrency’s creator and a few armchair sleuths have tried to tie the two together as one.

The Many Facts Pointing to Wei Dai Being Satoshi
Wei Dai (戴维) is a world-renowned cryptographer but has always kept an extremely low profile. Dai is the creator of the cryptographic algorithm schemes for the programming language C++ and still maintains Crypto++ to this day. Dai also wrote about a money system that is similar to bitcoin and Satoshi Nakamoto credited Dai’s b-money in the white paper.

One reason people think that Dai played the Nakamoto part, is because the talented cryptographer has the smarts to pull it off. Moreover, Dai created a C++ library for cryptographic functions called Crypto++ and he’s still a member of the academic and cypherpunk community. Dai is also a staunch supporter of privacy and the New York Times described the cryptographer as an “intensely private computer engineer.” Dai’s theories about anonymous electronic cash infrastructure can also be found on the cypherpunks mailing list well before Bitcoin was released. The cryptographer also crafted an electronic money system called “b-money” and it is the reason he is referenced in the Bitcoin white paper. In addition to his white paper reference, Dai and Nakamoto also exchanged a few emails in 2008, according to documents hosted on gwern.net.

Gwern.net hosts a few emails sent to Dai in 2008 that were originally published in a Sunday Times article in 2014. In the email pictured above, Satoshi explains that he’s finished the first version of the Bitcoin protocol.

B-money is an interesting system and Dai explained in 1998 that Tim May’s crypto-anarchy “fascinated” him. “Unlike the communities traditionally associated with the word ‘anarchy,’ in a crypto-anarchy the government is not temporarily destroyed but permanently forbidden and permanently unnecessary,” Dai wrote in the first section of the b-money white paper. “It’s a community where the threat of violence is impotent because violence is impossible, and violence is impossible because its participants cannot be linked to their true names or physical locations,” the computer engineer added.

An excerpt from Wei Dai’s “b-money” system.

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