Blockstream chief executive and cryptographer Adam Back says a 200-word post from back in 1999, a decade before Bitcoin was launched, appears to carry the hallmarks of the anonymous creator of Bitcoin known as Satoshi Nakamoto.
The text is part of a back and forth among the cypherpunks, a group of activists who emerged in the late 80s advocating cryptography, anonymity and personal privacy.
Back, who is referenced in the Bitcoin whitepaper, is a longtime member of the movement and the inventor of Hashcash, a proof-of-work system that ultimately became a cornerstone for BTC.
In a series of tweets, Back says he has unearthed a post from the early cypherpunk days featuring an anonymous author who spouted a number of Bitcoin’s ideals, including how to successfully secure a virtual currency in a decentralized manner.
“One possibility is to make the double-spending database public. Whenever someone receives a coin they broadcast its value. The [database] operates in parallel across a large number of servers so it is intractable to shut it down.”
— Adam Back (@adam3us) April 17, 2020
However, at one point, the author writes “over night” instead of “overnight” – a mistake that would be out of character for the notably meticulous Nakamoto.
Back says the error is noteworthy, but calls it more of a typo than a misspelling.