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Chapter 5 – Bitcoin Founder Unmasked
What’s in a name?
The name Satoshi Nakamoto is very unique. Repeated search on the “name” only leads to Bitcoin’s Satoshi Nakamoto and no one else. Google either pulls the first name “Satoshi” or the last name “Nakamoto” but not the complete name for any other person. It is clear that it is not a name of an individual. It is a Pseudonym created by adding a first and last names of two different individuals or characters.
Satoshi is the first name for many people from Japan. Satoshi is also the name of a animation character according to Wikipedia.
Ash Ketchum, known as Satoshi (????) in Japan, is a fictional character in the Pokémon franchise owned by Nintendo. He is the main protagonist of the Pokémon anime and manga series, as well as on various merchandise related to the franchise.
In an email conversation with James Donald at cryptography mailing list dated Mon 17 November 2008 Satoshi reveals he is working on Bitcoin concept from one and half years. It means he was working on Bitcoin from June 2007. Satoshi also said the same thing in one of the replies on bitcoin forum.
Re: Bitcoin P2P e-cash paper
Satoshi Nakamoto Mon, 17 Nov 2008 13:33:04 -0800
I believe I’ve worked through all those little details over the last year and a half while coding it, and there were a lot of them.
The functional details are not covered in the paper, but the sourcecode is coming soon. I sent you the main files.
(available by request at the moment, full release soon)
What’s in the Title?
Most of us has seen the infamous title of the white paper Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System dated 31 October 2008.
On 22 August 2008, Satoshi sent an email to Wei Dai with the first draft of the paper which is not yet released to public domain.
This email conversation between Satoshi and Wei Dai is posted at gwern’s website
From: “Satoshi Nakamoto”
Sent: Friday, August 22, 2008 4:38 PM
To: “Wei Dai”
Cc: “Satoshi Nakamoto”
Subject: Citation of your b-money page
I was very interested to read your b-money page. I’m getting ready to
release a paper that expands on your ideas into a complete working system.
Adam Back (hashcash.org) noticed the similarities and pointed me to your
I need to find out the year of publication of your b-money page for the
citation in my paper. It’ll look like:
 W. Dai, “b-money,” http://www.weidai.com/bmoney.txt, (2006?).
You can download a pre-release draft at
http://www.upload.ae/file/6157/ecash-pdf.html Feel free to forward it to
anyone else you think would be interested.
Title: Electronic Cash Without a Trusted Third Party
Abstract: A purely peer-to-peer version of electronic cash would allow
online payments to be sent directly from one party to another without the
burdens of going through a financial institution. Digital signatures
offer part of the solution, but the main benefits are lost if a trusted
party is still required to prevent double-spending. We propose a solution
to the double-spending problem using a peer-to-peer network. The network
timestamps transactions by hashing them into an ongoing chain of
hash-based proof-of-work, forming a record that cannot be changed without
redoing the proof-of-work. The longest chain not only serves as proof of
the sequence of events witnessed, but proof that it came from the largest
pool of CPU power. As long as honest nodes control the most CPU power on
the network, they can generate the longest chain and outpace any
attackers. The network itself requires minimal structure. Messages are
broadcasted on a best effort basis, and nodes can leave and rejoin the
network at will, accepting the longest proof-of-work chain as proof of
what happened while they were gone.
The title of the paper was Electronic Cash Without a Trusted Third Party
This title is the only unique resource to identify Satoshi Nakamoto who was in disguise till now behind the Pseudonym and Tor Network.
I searched for the “Title” on Google and guess what? BINGO !!!!! I HIT THE BIT GOLD 🙂
The title leads to a paper at International Association for Cryptologic Research dated 5th July 2007 (Does the date ring any bells?). It was the same time Satoshi said he was working on bitcoin (i.e) June 2007.
Download Paper – https://eprint.iacr.org/2007/216.pdf
The title of the paper at IACR is “Unlinkable Divisible Digital Cash without Trusted Third Party”. This paper has many similarities to Bitcoin.
More than the paper, I was very amused by looking at the citations of the paper.
Citations listed on the document are couple of Japanese cryptographers.
Unlinkable Divisible Electronic Cash – Toru Nakanishi and Yuji Sugiyama
Universal electronic cash – by Tatsuaki Okamoto, Kazuo Ohta- 1991
An efficient on-line electronic cash with unlinkable exact payments – Mitsuaki Shiota, Yuji Sugiyama (2004)
During my research, I never came across these Japanese cryptographers and I bet many of you either. The names Nakanishi and Okamoto ringed many bells.
The Pseudonym is cracked now.
Satoshi was very much inspired by these two cryptographers as his Bitcoin is based on these two papers at the start and he developed it further. Satoshi named his last name NakaMoto by taking “Naka” from Nakanishi and “Moto” from Okamoto
He either picked Satoshi from the famous Pokemon character or from the name Toru Nakanishi and added “Sa” to the start by making it Satoshi.
The Bitcoin Connection
Many of the concepts mentioned in the paper draw similarities to Bitcoin but it looks like a pre-draft to Original Bitcoin white paper. This paper was a start and Satoshi further developed it with Peer-to-Peer connections and Hashcash.
Namely, we propose a scheme that supports efficient protocols and coin storage, divisibility, anonymity, unlinkability and protection against double-spending, all without the need for a trusted third party.
Anonymity. The payer who didn’t violate the protocol can’t be identified from the information sent during payment.
Unlinkability. It’s infeasible to link any two payments executed by the same user (even without learning the payer’s identity), unless the payments lead to double-spending.
Unforgeability. Neither a coin nor a transcript of a payment of an honest user can be forged.
Exculpability. A user can be identified as a double-spender only if she really is guilty. Additionally, even if a user was caught double-spending, she is only responsible for payments she indeed double-spent (i.e., she cannot be framed into making other payments).
Divisibility. User can perform any payment worth no more than the coin’s total value (as long as it is a multiplicity of the minimal value subdivided from the coin).
No double-spending. All double-spending attempts will be detected and the user who tries to spend more than the coin’s total value will be identified.
Who are the authors of the paper?
Unlinkable Divisible Digital Cash without Trusted Third Party *
Pawel Pszona and Grzegorz Stachowiak
University of Wroclaw, Poland
July 5, 2007
The paper was submitted by Pawel Pszona M.Sc student at University of Wroclaw, Poland. His Professor was Grzegorz Stachowiak.
A quick search on professor Grzegorz leads to his page at University
Dr Grzegorz Stachowiak
Telefon: 71 375-7826
Institute of Computer Science
University of Wroclaw
ul. Joliot-Curie 15
50-383 Wroclaw, Poland
The paper was written by Pawel and Professor was his Guide. I could conclude that Pawel Pszona is our Satoshi Nakamoto based on the writing and research effort that was taken to develop Bitcoin.
ConclusionThe Pseudonym is cracked and we found the reference NakaMoto in the citations of the paper.The time period matches June – July 2007The relevance of the paper to original Bitcoin white paper is clearly visible including the concepts, terminology, writing skills.Even though many have written papers on Digital Cash, the words “Without Trusted Third Party” and solving “Double-Spending” are unique to Satoshi and these are the same concepts that are discussed in Pawel’s paper “Unlinkable Divisible Digital Cash without Trusted Third Party”During July 2007 he named the paper as “Unlinkable Divisible Digital Cash without Trusted Third Party”, On August 2008 he changed it to “Electronic Cash Without a Trusted Third Party” and finally the output on October 2008 was “Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System”The conclusions I have drawn under Chapter 4 – The Devil is in the details matches completely with Pawel Pszona, our own Satoshi Nakamoto.