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Author Topic: Bitcoin and me (Hal Finney)  (Read 250514 times)
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July 03, 2018, 02:21:57 PM
 #701

bitcoin and me i would like to thank you bitcoin if not because of you my life has change and i realize that bitcoin is helpful and im proud that im schooling by using of bitcoin im balancing my study and bitcoin. and its look like the story of hal finney im encourgeng you guys to study the crypto currency. thank you for sharing your story hal finney im salute you sir and im respect you.
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July 04, 2018, 03:15:48 AM
 #702

I hope you know that your blind trust in bitcoin was probably the cause of it being stable during the first weeks/months and your combat against ALS is really inspiring.
Rest in peace Hal.
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July 14, 2018, 01:16:02 PM
 #703

I thought I'd write about the last four years, an eventful time for Bitcoin and me.

For those who don't know me, I'm Hal Finney. I got my start in crypto working on an early version of PGP, working closely with Phil Zimmermann. When Phil decided to start PGP Corporation, I was one of the first hires. I would work on PGP until my retirement. At the same time, I got involved with the Cypherpunks. I ran the first cryptographically based anonymous remailer, among other activities.

Fast forward to late 2008 and the announcement of Bitcoin. I've noticed that cryptographic graybeards (I was in my mid 50's) tend to get cynical. I was more idealistic; I have always loved crypto, the mystery and the paradox of it.

When Satoshi announced Bitcoin on the cryptography mailing list, he got a skeptical reception at best. Cryptographers have seen too many grand schemes by clueless noobs. They tend to have a knee jerk reaction.

I was more positive. I had long been interested in cryptographic payment schemes. Plus I was lucky enough to meet and extensively correspond with both Wei Dai and Nick Szabo, generally acknowledged to have created ideas that would be realized with Bitcoin. I had made an attempt to create my own proof of work based currency, called RPOW. So I found Bitcoin facinating.

When Satoshi announced the first release of the software, I grabbed it right away. I think I was the first person besides Satoshi to run bitcoin. I mined block 70-something, and I was the recipient of the first bitcoin transaction, when Satoshi sent ten coins to me as a test. I carried on an email conversation with Satoshi over the next few days, mostly me reporting bugs and him fixing them.

Today, Satoshi's true identity has become a mystery. But at the time, I thought I was dealing with a young man of Japanese ancestry who was very smart and sincere. I've had the good fortune to know many brilliant people over the course of my life, so I recognize the signs.

After a few days, bitcoin was running pretty stably, so I left it running. Those were the days when difficulty was 1, and you could find blocks with a CPU, not even a GPU. I mined several blocks over the next days. But I turned it off because it made my computer run hot, and the fan noise bothered me. In retrospect, I wish I had kept it up longer, but on the other hand I was extraordinarily lucky to be there at the beginning. It's one of those glass half full half empty things.

The next I heard of Bitcoin was late 2010, when I was surprised to find that it was not only still going, bitcoins actually had monetary value. I dusted off my old wallet, and was relieved to discover that my bitcoins were still there. As the price climbed up to real money, I transferred the coins into an offline wallet, where hopefully they'll be worth something to my heirs.

Speaking of heirs, I got a surprise in 2009, when I was suddenly diagnosed with a fatal disease. I was in the best shape of my life at the start of that year, I'd lost a lot of weight and taken up distance running. I'd run several half marathons, and I was starting to train for a full marathon. I worked my way up to 20+ mile runs, and I thought I was all set. That's when everything went wrong.

My body began to fail. I slurred my speech, lost strength in my hands, and my legs were slow to recover. In August, 2009, I was given the diagnosis of ALS, also called Lou Gehrig's disease, after the famous baseball player who got it.

ALS is a disease that kills moter neurons, which carry signals from the brain to the muscles. It causes first weakness, then gradually increasing paralysis. It is usually fatal in 2 to 5 years. My symptoms were mild at first and I continued to work, but fatigue and voice problems forced me to retire in early 2011. Since then the disease has continued its inexorable progression.

Today, I am essentially paralyzed. I am fed through a tube, and my breathing is assisted through another tube. I operate the computer using a commercial eyetracker system. It also has a speech synthesizer, so this is my voice now. I spend all day in my power wheelchair. I worked up an interface using an arduino so that I can adjust my wheelchair's position using my eyes.

It has been an adjustment, but my life is not too bad. I can still read, listen to music, and watch TV and movies. I recently discovered that I can even write code. It's very slow, probably 50 times slower than I was before. But I still love programming and it gives me goals. Currently I'm working on something Mike Hearn suggested, using the security features of modern processors, designed to support "Trusted Computing", to harden Bitcoin wallets. It's almost ready to release. I just have to do the documentation.

And of course the price gyrations of bitcoins are entertaining to me. I have skin in the game. But I came by my bitcoins through luck, with little credit to me. I lived through the crash of 2011. So I've seen it before. Easy come, easy go.

That's my story. I'm pretty lucky overall. Even with the ALS, my life is very satisfying. But my life expectancy is limited. Those discussions about inheriting your bitcoins are of more than academic interest. My bitcoins are stored in our safe deposit box, and my son and daughter are tech savvy. I think they're safe enough. I'm comfortable with my legacy.
[edited slightly]

Wow. This kind of genuine act deserves praise from all bitcoin users around the world. Your great work will surely inspire others to contribute even in a simplest ways.
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July 18, 2018, 07:51:16 AM
 #704

I don't understand why people talk as if he's dead. He is pronounced clinically dead, but it's not like his body has decayed beyond possible future resuscitation. He is alive, in fact, right now, he is immortal. Huh
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July 19, 2018, 01:55:49 PM
 #705

your story will be our memories continue in this forum and you will become a legend for our children later.

if only you were not here, maybe i will not be like this and i should be more grateful for this life, hopefully at other times we can chatting with you guys.

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July 23, 2018, 05:40:32 AM
 #706

Hal Finney's words simplified some of the complex cloud of misinformation that I have gathered through the years. I too was introduced to Satoshi's whitepaper in early 2010. I was too skeptical with everything in my life during those times that I just disregarded Bitcoin. Today, I can only wish I dared to have involved myself with Bitcoin that early, I hate to regret. But I don't hate myself because since 2014, I got myself mostly into, getting high with cryptos.

Of course Hal is dead. We can only be grateful with what he has contributed to the cryptocurrency world. Now we should enjoy from the fruits of the early crypto-creators and innovators' works.

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July 26, 2018, 07:01:21 PM
 #707

Reading this story makes me want to question God that why is he suddenly taking great minds away that could cause serious development with their minds.Am really touched but who am I to question the almight?.But how sure are we that you are not Satoshi himself or know him?.Just thinking a little aloud.That is great ,great achievement,you have made my day.

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July 29, 2018, 12:47:07 PM
 #708

I thought I'd write about the last four years, an eventful time for Bitcoin and me.

For those who don't know me, I'm Hal Finney. I got my start in crypto working on an early version of PGP, working closely with Phil Zimmermann. When Phil decided to start PGP Corporation, I was one of the first hires. I would work on PGP until my retirement. At the same time, I got involved with the Cypherpunks. I ran the first cryptographically based anonymous remailer, among other activities.

Fast forward to late 2008 and the announcement of Bitcoin. I've noticed that cryptographic graybeards (I was in my mid 50's) tend to get cynical. I was more idealistic; I have always loved crypto, the mystery and the paradox of it.

When Satoshi announced Bitcoin on the cryptography mailing list, he got a skeptical reception at best. Cryptographers have seen too many grand schemes by clueless noobs. They tend to have a knee jerk reaction.

I was more positive. I had long been interested in cryptographic payment schemes. Plus I was lucky enough to meet and extensively correspond with both Wei Dai and Nick Szabo, generally acknowledged to have created ideas that would be realized with Bitcoin. I had made an attempt to create my own proof of work based currency, called RPOW. So I found Bitcoin facinating.

When Satoshi announced the first release of the software, I grabbed it right away. I think I was the first person besides Satoshi to run bitcoin. I mined block 70-something, and I was the recipient of the first bitcoin transaction, when Satoshi sent ten coins to me as a test. I carried on an email conversation with Satoshi over the next few days, mostly me reporting bugs and him fixing them.

Today, Satoshi's true identity has become a mystery. But at the time, I thought I was dealing with a young man of Japanese ancestry who was very smart and sincere. I've had the good fortune to know many brilliant people over the course of my life, so I recognize the signs.

After a few days, bitcoin was running pretty stably, so I left it running. Those were the days when difficulty was 1, and you could find blocks with a CPU, not even a GPU. I mined several blocks over the next days. But I turned it off because it made my computer run hot, and the fan noise bothered me. In retrospect, I wish I had kept it up longer, but on the other hand I was extraordinarily lucky to be there at the beginning. It's one of those glass half full half empty things.

The next I heard of Bitcoin was late 2010, when I was surprised to find that it was not only still going, bitcoins actually had monetary value. I dusted off my old wallet, and was relieved to discover that my bitcoins were still there. As the price climbed up to real money, I transferred the coins into an offline wallet, where hopefully they'll be worth something to my heirs.

Speaking of heirs, I got a surprise in 2009, when I was suddenly diagnosed with a fatal disease. I was in the best shape of my life at the start of that year, I'd lost a lot of weight and taken up distance running. I'd run several half marathons, and I was starting to train for a full marathon. I worked my way up to 20+ mile runs, and I thought I was all set. That's when everything went wrong.

My body began to fail. I slurred my speech, lost strength in my hands, and my legs were slow to recover. In August, 2009, I was given the diagnosis of ALS, also called Lou Gehrig's disease, after the famous baseball player who got it.

ALS is a disease that kills moter neurons, which carry signals from the brain to the muscles. It causes first weakness, then gradually increasing paralysis. It is usually fatal in 2 to 5 years. My symptoms were mild at first and I continued to work, but fatigue and voice problems forced me to retire in early 2011. Since then the disease has continued its inexorable progression.

Today, I am essentially paralyzed. I am fed through a tube, and my breathing is assisted through another tube. I operate the computer using a commercial eyetracker system. It also has a speech synthesizer, so this is my voice now. I spend all day in my power wheelchair. I worked up an interface using an arduino so that I can adjust my wheelchair's position using my eyes.

It has been an adjustment, but my life is not too bad. I can still read, listen to music, and watch TV and movies. I recently discovered that I can even write code. It's very slow, probably 50 times slower than I was before. But I still love programming and it gives me goals. Currently I'm working on something Mike Hearn suggested, using the security features of modern processors, designed to support "Trusted Computing", to harden Bitcoin wallets. It's almost ready to release. I just have to do the documentation.

And of course the price gyrations of bitcoins are entertaining to me. I have skin in the game. But I came by my bitcoins through luck, with little credit to me. I lived through the crash of 2011. So I've seen it before. Easy come, easy go.

That's my story. I'm pretty lucky overall. Even with the ALS, my life is very satisfying. But my life expectancy is limited. Those discussions about inheriting your bitcoins are of more than academic interest. My bitcoins are stored in our safe deposit box, and my son and daughter are tech savvy. I think they're safe enough. I'm comfortable with my legacy.
[edited slightly]
Thankyou for sharing this story , this memories will remain in bitcoin forum until we get old. This is very inspirational and nice to read it will make us realize somethings.

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July 29, 2018, 02:06:36 PM
 #709

Bitcoin is going to be something really positive and remarkable in the history of humanity. Wheter it stays the same or evolves, I think there's no doubt about that reached this point.  Thank's for story!
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July 29, 2018, 02:47:11 PM
 #710

I am very impressed and thank you for taking the time to read your story. I wondered beforehand what efforts I would take to continue programming in conditions like yours. Bitcoin has changed everything and your story helped me immensely. Success is always for you.. Smiley
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August 16, 2018, 06:17:13 PM
 #711

I really impressed. Thank you for sharing this story. It is one of the rare moment that I realize how human could be powerfull and great mindy. I got it as an example of inspiration.
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August 24, 2018, 07:37:40 AM
 #712

When I first learned about bitcoin, I was skeptic until such time that I made a study and research about and true enough that bitcoin will really help you financially.You will be aware of the amazing bitcoin world.
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August 24, 2018, 08:29:35 AM
 #713

Well we are hoping for the success of the project which is being develop already. I know that there could be so many benefits with it and i know that it is being design because it is a need that needs to attend. There is no way that a legend like Hal Finney could not finish it. He had contributed so much on this system.

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August 24, 2018, 08:45:32 AM
 #714

Hal Finney will always deserve more respect than the bitcoin community already gives him.

There was no financial interest in wasting his time making those silly bitcoins transfer to wallets in a decentralized way...most people would not put any energy into a project like that.

But he and Satoshi "wasted their time" with a project that they had a real passion for and changed the world forever.

It's a lesson that many new to crypto (especially the people involved in ICO's), could learn from...Bitcoin wasn't created to make people rich.

If people can store value, securely and safely then everyone is better off for being introduced to bitcoin. All the noise around it from media and marketers, makes us forget sometimes what the whole point of this was in the beginning.

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September 06, 2018, 12:40:50 PM
 #715

I have been looking on this thread because the owner of these account is one of the team or the owner of the bitcoin system. Hal Finney is one that should take credits for the improvement of the system. Since he carry out the first try on how the system works and more probably if you are one of the developer then you will be the one also to take charge on testing.
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September 06, 2018, 08:17:05 PM
 #716

I have been looking on this thread because the owner of these account is one of the team or the owner of the bitcoin system. Hal Finney is one that should take credits for the improvement of the system. Since he carry out the first try on how the system works and more probably if you are one of the developer then you will be the one also to take charge on testing.

If you had looked into this thread a bit better, you would have noticed that Hal Finney is no longer a living person.

Your other point about some person taking charge seems to go contrary to how a decentralized system works, such as bitcoin - and that seems to be part of the reason why Satoshi was anonymous and has so far been able to successfully remove himself from the project, remain anonymous or disappear (to the extent that Satoshi might not be dead, too). 

Yes, it seems that Hal Finney had made a lot of contributions to bitcoin during its very early days - but also as time passed there were others who took on increasing roles and "took charge" in the sense that they had been (or have been) making contributions to bitcoin.  Your attempt to suggest that bitcoin is deficient because there does not seem to be a kind of in charge seems to fail/refuse to recognize that "no one in charge" is a feature rather than a bug and seems to be an ongoing success of bitcoin in which bitcoin naysayers, attackers and ignorant folks continue to wrongly or maliciously assert as a kind of bitcoin deficiency.

Put BTC here: 3Mw2q99MXkUhtdM4MECXf1bE4GGrz9cnMS

How much alt coin diversification is necessary? if you are investing in Bitcoin, then perhaps 0%?
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September 07, 2018, 06:18:21 PM
 #717

Great story. An inspiring one indeed. That's to say we shouldn't give up on bitcoin no matter how bad we feel about it. Bitcoin has come to stay
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September 12, 2018, 02:04:11 PM
 #718

Wow, that's an incredible guy. Hal, I hope that you will go best as one of the first who uses Bitcoin, and even more impressively, that you communicated with Satoshi.
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September 12, 2018, 02:33:50 PM
 #719

bitcoin and me are very awesome because i can do all things about bitcoin i can invest and i can have a profit in case of emergency i can have a money and i can buy what i want to buy are daily needs and wants in my daily living i believe that bitcoin will be recover soon as long as i have patience bitcoin is great on this generation all keep believing in the power of bitcoin.

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