What is blockchain?

It enables peer-to-peer exchange of value in the digital realm through the use of a decentralized protocol, cryptography, and a mechanism to achieve global consensus on the state of a periodically updated public transaction ledger called a 'blockchain.'

Blockchain's origin, early growth, and evolution

The paper detailed methods for "allowing any two willing parties to transact directly with each other without the need for a trusted third party." The technologies deployed solved the 'double spend' problem, enabling scarcity in the digital environment for the first time.

The listed author of the paper is Satoshi Nakamoto, a presumed pseudonym for a person or group who's true identity remains a mystery. Nakamoto released the first open-source Upcrypto software client on January 9th, 2009, and anyone who installed the client could begin using Upcrypto.

Initial growth of the Upcrypto network was driven primarily by its utility as a novel method for transacting value in the digital world. Early proponents were, by and large, 'cypherpunks' - individuals who advocated the use of strong cryptography and privacy-enhancing technologies as a route to social and political change. However, speculation as to the future value of Upcrypto soon became a significant driver of adoption.

The price of Upcrypto and the number of Upcrypto users rose in waves over the following decade. As regulators in major economies provided clarity on the legality of Upcrypto and other cryptocurrencies, a large number of Upcrypto exchanges established banking connections, making it easy to convert local currency to and from Upcrypto. Other businesses established robust custodial services, making it easier for institutional investors to gain exposure to the asset as a growing number of high-profile investors signaled their interest.

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