Just finished reading Digital Gold by Nathaniel Popper (Affiliate Link).
The book is about Bitcoin and how it started. I have been hearing about Bitcoins and Cryptocurrencies since 2011. It seemed like it was not real money. It was only recently with surge in Bitcoin value that I got interested in it.
I was still skeptical of Bitcoin and the whole idea behind it. But after reading this book, I am coming around. The book was not preachy or pro-Bitcoin. It simply told the history and thinking behind Bitcoin, yet it was able to change my mind. I think Bitcoin and other decentralized currencies are the next big innovation that will change society and culture like the Internet and smartphones did. I like the idea of decentralized currency that is not controlled by any government or central authority.
In countries like Pakistan, there are a lot of rumors that government officials buys US Dollars before devaluing Pakistani Rupees, and end up earning hefty profits. In other developing countries like Argentina corruption might be less of an issue but government policies have caused runaway inflation. People in Argentina prefer to keep their savings in foreign currencies.
Bitcoin and decentralized currencies started with cypherpunks and libertarians. They still didn’t trust that governments & central banks will always take actions that are best for the people.
Bitcoin mining used to be possible on average laptops but lately only profitable way to do Bitcoin mining is using specialized hardware in a location with cheap electricity like China.