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Crypto-Economics: Infrastructures and Artefacts

The Bitcoin 'Genesis Block' is the first block of the Blockchain that ever got created. Satoshi Nakamoto himself added a reference to a newspaper article with the title "The Time 03/Jan/2009 Chancellor on brink of second bailout for banks".

Crypto-Economics: Infrastructures and Artefacts (“Cryptoeconomics”) is an early publication from the RIAT Institute. The publication is showcasing the Austrian communities around cryptography, DLT and cryptocurrency. RIAT has produced this publication for Forum Alpbach in 2017.

Crypto-Economics: the seeds of the crypto dream

In the 1970s, three different developments (the ciphers DES and RSA, as well as the Diffie-Hellman key exchange) came about. These developments allowed individuals with modest computing resources to encrypt communication. Innovations in encryption appeared on the eve of the micro-computing revolution, and external observers started to view computers as tools of empowerment and autonomy rather than instruments of the state. These were the “seeds of the crypto dream.” (Narayanan, 2013).

In 2009 Satoshi Nakamoto introduced Bitcoin to the Cypherpunks Mailing List. Likeminded people started this mailing list in 1992 to discuss mathematics, cryptography, computer science, political and philosophical theories and peer-to-peer technology. The seeds of the crypto-dream and the thoughts of the cypherpunks preceed the ideas of a peer-to-peer digital currency, as Bitcoin originally intended.

Bitcoin, as well as the contemporary “cryptosphere” is dominated by novel sociopolitical experiments based on previously unavailable technological parameters which are embedded in distributed ledger technologies, “Smart Contracts” (Szabo, 1994) and “Algocratic Governance” (Aneesh, 2009).

This booklet offers a brief overview of the ‘cryptoeconomic condition’. Additionally, it gives insights into crypto- and blockchain-related activities within Austria from 2011-2017. By collecting these occurrences, it aims to offer outlooks and perspectives that illuminate our technological future to come.

ISBN: 9780994578396, 4A1542BF08C8DA22BAE673EF36CD7FAB

See also the publication Future Cryptoeconomics and other publications from the RIAT Institute.