Friday, 07 March 2014 00:00

The Hunt for Satoshi Nakamoto The Founder Bitcoin

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Nakamoto is a Japanese-American descended from Samurai who born in July 1949 in the city of Beppu, Japan, where he was brought up poor and as a Buddhist by his mother.

She migrated to California in 1959 bringing Satoshi with him and he graduated from California State Polytechnic University at the age 0f 23. For the past 40-years he has not used his birth name and in 1973 changed his name to Dorian Prentice Satoshi Nakamoto. He signs his name Dorian S. Nakamoto. The name Nakamoto appeared in the 2008 whitepaper introducing bitcoin, but the moniker was widely believed to be an alias for a person or group.

After he graduated, Nakamoto began work at Hughes Aircraft in southern California where he settled down and got married - having a son named Eric Nakamoto, who now works as an animation and 3-D graphics designer in Philadelphia. He divorced his first wife, remarried and had a further five children with his second wife Grace Mitchell, 56, who lives in Aubodon, New Jersey. She said that he came to the East Coast after leaving Hughes Aircraft, which is now part of defense contractor Raytheon when he was in his late 20s and then worked for Radio Corporation of America in Camden, as a systems engineer. 'We were doing defensive electronics and communications for the military, government aircraft and warships, but it was classified and I can't really talk about it,' confirmed David Micha, president of the company now called L-3 Communications to Newsweek.

Nakamoto and Grace separated in 2000, but have never divorced. She said he worked as a software engineer for the Federal Aviation Administration in New Jersey after 9/11 in security and communications work.

'It was very secret,' she said to Newsweek. 'He left that job sometime in 2001 and I don't think he's had a steady job since.'  Since bitcoin was launched in 2009, the hunt has been on for the real Satoshi Nakamoto.  Theories about him have abounded online. Was the creation solely his or was he working for some kind of sinister New World Order global conspiracy? Bitcoin has been associated with the shadier aspects of the National Security Agency and the International Monetary Fund. Bitcoin is a virtual currency that can be delivered like email anywhere on Earth without bank or exchange fees and is stored on cellphones or hard drives until it is used again. However, the money can be lost if the hard drive simply malfunctions or if the bitcoin is stolen by hackers. According to Newsweek, they tracked Nakamoto down after finding he had posted onto website forums for model train enthusiasts. He corresponded with the reporter about his love of trains until she asked about his involvement in bitcoin. 'He has been buying train parts from Japan and England since he was a teenager, saying, ‘I do machining myself, manual lathe, mill, surface grinders,’ Goodman wrote about the mystery man

Bitcoin is now in the hands of a nonprofit trust called the Bitcoin Foundation, which includes their chief scientist and code writer, Gavin Andresen, 47. 'The whole reason geeks get excited about Bitcoin is that it is the most efficient way to do financial transactions,' said Andresen to Newsweek. Nakamoto's relatives did allude to his motivations for creating the currency when they said he may have written the code because of his frustration with bankruptcies in the past and paying high fees online when buying model train parts from England.

Andresen began work with bitcoin in 2010 and admits to corresponding with the founder of the currency, who he knew as a man named Satoshi Nakamoto, a few times a week only on email. Their interactions, he says, always took place by 'email or private message'.

'He was the kind of person who, if you made an honest mistake, he might call you an idiot and never speak to you again,' Andresen said to Newsweek.  'Back then, it was not clear that creating Bitcoin might be a legal thing to do. He went to great lengths to protect his anonymity.' According to Newsweek, the Nakamoto that Andresen spoke to never answered any questions on where he was from, his professional background or any other projects that he had worked on.

He never even divulged if his name was real of a pseudonym. Andresen said working with Nakamoto could be difficult. 'He was the kind of person who, if you made an honest mistake, he might call you an idiot and never speak to you again,' he said. Mobbed: Nakamoto was overwhelmed by the pack of reporters who showed up outside his home following the publication of the Newsweek article 'He doesn’t like the system we have today and wanted a different one that would be more equal. He did not like the notion of banks and bankers getting wealthy just because they hold the keys,' Andresen said.

Over the course of the interview, Nakamoto's family described him as 'extremely intelligent, moody and obsessively private, a man of few words who screens his phone calls, anonymizes his emails and, for most of his life, has been preoccupied with the two things for which Bitcoin has now become known: money and secrecy.'

Neither family nor any colleagues could or would say why Nakamoto has remained so secretive about his work — and the millions he has made from Bitcoin. Andresen speculated that he simply wanted to keep flying under the radar. 'If you come out as the leader of Bitcoin, now you have to make appearances and presentations and comments to the press and that didn’t really fit with Satoshi’s personality,' he told the magazine.

Whoever, the real Satoshi Nakamoto is, that individual sitting on a fortune.  A Bitcoin wallet under his name contains 1 million Bitcoins—$657 million USD at current exchange rates—that haven't been touched since Bitcoin's inception.
Newsweek speculates the reason he hasn't spent it is because doing so could have compromised his anonymity.  Another reason is that he doesn't want to attract the attention of the IRS. One thing is now clear: If this is the genuine bitcoin inventor, his life might never be the same again now that his true identity has been revealed.

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Read 669 times Last modified on Friday, 07 March 2014 23:23
Brian Cohen

Brian is the Chief Editor at fundedflow