Satoshi Nakamoto, the pseudonymous behind the creator of decentralized cryptocurrency Bitcoin, appears to be writing a book. On June 29 a cryptic message posted on the site nakamotofamilyfoundation.org, announced the book along with the “first excerpt to a literary work consisting of two parts” which declares to be “a short story if you will, with some of the most brought up questions and answers. I wanted the people and the facts to be known.”
The excerpt is titled “Duality.” However, there’s no way of telling if the real Satoshi Nakamoto is actually the author. Some signs point to doubt if behind the post is the real Nakamoto.
“Announcing the first excerpt to a literary work consisting of two parts. The excerpt is provided. I wanted to include it as a brief glimpse of history. Even for those that can’t read the full book, I wanted to make this available to everyone. A short story if you will, with some of the most brought up questions and answers. I wanted the people and the facts to be known. Or as much of it. I’m still saving most for the books, the best parts hopefully. It’s currently just a possibility for now. In the meantime the excerpt is included.” says the announcement posted on the website.”
The excerpt is an interesting read: It reveals several previously unknown details about Satoshi’s life and works, including the reason why the pseudonym “Satoshi Nakamoto” was chosen.
“Satoshi Nakamoto is not a real name. Specifically, not a legal name. It is primarily the essence of thoughts and reason. I wanted the most common name, which I knew no one outside of Japan had any recollection that Satoshi Nakamoto, was the equivalent of ‘John Smith,'” the author writes.
It also names several key people that helped in the development of Bitcoin, including David Chaum, Mike Hearn, Adam Beck, Wei Dai, Hal Finney. Interestingly, Nick Szabo isn’t named, a cryptography expert that’s widely regarded as someone who could be the real Satoshi Nakamoto.
The excerpt also explains why the final number of Bitcoins produced is set at 21 million coins.
“Why 21 million? The truth is, it was an educated guess. The math worked out, or as close to it as I had wanted it to. Before settling on 21 million however, I had considered making 100 BTC as the reward, and 42—the answer to life, the universe, and everything. But afraid that others would consider my reference to Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy a quip and at the expense of not being taken seriously, I changed it to 21 million,” the excrept author writes.
In true Nakamoto style, it even includes a crypto puzzle (very simple), which if solved reveal names related to the title of the book.
The answer to the cryptogram seems to be “honne and tatamae,” which according to Wikipedia is a Japanese expression that describes “the contrast between a person’s true feelings and desires” and “the behavior and opinions one displays in public.”
So this really the first public text of Satoshi Nakamoto since he disappeared in 2011? Can be possible but unlikely.
Satoshi is known for grammatical accuracy, while the freshly published excerpt is riddled with errors. It also doesn’t appear to produce any solid evidence.
As for today, none can verify the authenticity of the post or excerpt.