Welcome to the first community built BItcoin course! This course serves as a central point of introduction to Bitcoin for anyone interested. It assumes no special skills or knowledge nor experience in computer science. All are welcome and the course shall forever be free under a creative commons license.
The course is divided into several sections. The Core Lecture Path serves as a comprehensive introduction for beginners on all relevant topics necessary to have a deep understanding of Bitcoin including why Bitcoins have value, why they can be used for anonymous transactions, the current economy of Bitcoins, how they are made and distributed as well as speculation.
The bonus lecture path addresses specific questions students have asked and are not necessary for to satisfy the goals of the course. Feel free to request a bonus lecture at any time! Finally, there are dedicated tracks for more in-depth analysis of the theoretical concepts of Bitcoin alongside the software that makes makes Bitcoin work well.
Feel free to upload and sign my PGP key to key servers if desired. Contact me with any questions, comments or concerns you may have or for volunteer/partnership opportunities.
https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/chatzilla/ (For chatzilla)
https://en.bitcoin.it/wiki/IRC_channels (For IRC channels)
Jon Matonis is an e-money researcher and crypto economist focused on expanding the circulation of non-political digital currencies. His career has included senior influential posts at Sumitomo Bank, VISA, VeriSign, and Hushmail. Currently, He serves on the Board of Directors for the Bitcoin Foundation, is Tech Contributor to Forbes Magazine, and Op-Ed Contributor to American Banker.
Jon is also Editor of The Monetary Future economics blog and board advisor to startups in bitcoin, gaming, mobile, and prepaid.
He earned his B.A. in Economics at George Washington University in 1985. He also studied Economics and Computer Software Engineering at the University of Maryland, College Park.
Edited 3rd April 2013.
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GoldMoney’s Andy Duncan talks to Jon Matonis of the Bitcoin Foundation who is also a contributor to Forbes Magazine. They discuss Bitcoin’s latest price spike and whether crypto-currencies are a credible alternative as a medium of exchange.
Though the price for Bitcoins has risen from $15 to $95 at the time of the podcast, Matonis does not think that it is a speculative bubble. With a fixed supply of Bitcoin and rising demand - in part due to fears related to Cyprus – surging prices are only logical. As there is no futures market for bitcoins yet, there is no leverage, which makes Bitcoin also suitable for investment purposes.
They discuss whether Bitcoin could become a serious rival to precious metals when it comes to alternatives to national currencies. He points to the complimentary nature of physical bullion and Bitcoin. While Bitcoin has advantages in the digital world, nothing beats the security of tangible metal as it is not reliant on the existence of electricity and internet connectivity.
Matonis sees a bright future in crypto-currencies and especially values its possible impact on capital controls and taxes. For Bitcoin the important question will be whether it will be introduced by big merchants and whether governments will impose regulation against such acceptance.
This podcast was recorded on 28 March 2013.
Casey, a Bitcoin sceptic, notes that Bitcoin satisfies Aristotle’s definition of what constitutes “good” money in all but one important aspect: that it doesn’t have value in any kind of non-monetary sense, unrelated to its use as a medium of exchange. This is in contrast to precious metals, which have unique chemical properties and uses in an industrial context.
Matonis argues that this is unimportant set against Bitcoin’s strengths: notably the ease of transacting in them and its decentralised nature, meaning that there is no central point of attack for its enemies (whoever they may be). He also points out that – unlike gold – physical confiscation of Bitcoin, a la FDR in 1933, is for obvious reasons impossible.
This podcast was recorded on 11 April 2013.
Charles Hoskinson is a Colorado based technology entrepreneur and mathematician. He attended Metropolitan State University of Denver and University of Colorado at Boulder to study Number Theory and Mathematical Logic prior to moving into cryptography via industry exposure.
His professional experience includes founding two Bitcoin related start-ups- Invictus Innovations and Ethereum- and a variety of colorful positions in the public and private sector. He was the founding chairman of the Bitcoin Foundation's education committee and established the not for profit Cryptocurrency Research Group in September of 2013.
His current projects focus on education of cryptocurrency topics, evangelism of decentralization and making cryptographic tools easier to use for the mainstream.
Charles enjoys fishing and chess alongside a passion for functional programming, paradoxes and building mazes. He lives in Boulder Colorado, but often travels to more exotic locales.
Dr. Goss is a resident physician training in radiology at a leading medical institution in southeastern Minnesota. He received his medical degree from Rush University in Chicago in 2009, following a masters degree in biomedical engineering from the Mayo Clinic in 2006. Dr. Goss also holds a BA in Mathematics and a BS in Physics and Astronomy from the University of Rochester, received in 2002. Additionally, he holds patents in magnetic resonance elastography of the lung with his graduate school advisors.
Dr. Goss became interested in Bitcoin after reading Satoshi’s white paper in July 2010. Like many of the Bitcoin Education Project Fellows, he recognized the significance of the Bitcoin software and excitedly saw the revolutionary power of Bitcoin. In mid-2010, Dr. Goss effectively used his laptop to support the nascent Bitcoin network. While this tiny amount of computing power quickly became insignificant, he still believed in supporting Bitcoin. He was amongst the first traders on bitcoinmarket.com, the first online bitcoin exchange. He has written software for iOS to manage the public addresses in bitcoin wallets. Dr. Goss is one of the early members of the Bitcoin Foundation to which he is a lifetime member.
Currently, Dr. Goss is an active forum member participating in the accurate spread of bitcoin information. With enthusiasm he continues work in Bitcoin education as a senior fellow of the Bitcoin Education Project.
Areas of Interest
Social implications of Bitcoin, Political advocacy , Bitcoin history