Part 24 of my third global warming science fiction novel “Last Week”. Link to Part 01: “Back To Paradise Era”.
Saturday, February 12, 2023, 2:31 P.M.
“So, when you studied computer science and encryption, you came up with the Bitcoin network?” Angel asked. “Tell me about it. You are one of the most famous figures in history in our World. What was the decisive moment? When did everything just click and come together?”
“Actually, no, I did not come up with this on my own. I must admit it,” Satoshi said. “It’s a weird story. You’ll never believe me.”
“Tell me anyway. I’ll make an effort to believe it. My own story is not very believable either, for anyone who hasn’t lived it themselves. Your turn to tell a crazy story,” Angel said.
“You promise you won’t dump me if I tell you the truth?” Satoshi said. “I kind of like your company, even though I know it will end Monday night.”
“I promise,” Angel said. “Bring it on. Tell me the craziest thing you can think of. If I don’t believe it, I’ll like it anyway for the entertainment value. Remember, my mission here is to have fun. Go ahead. Entertain me.”
“Okay. So it starts all with a weird dream. These crazy stories always start with a weird dream,” Satoshi said. “I had studied hard to understand the elliptic curve digital signature algorithm all morning and fell asleep after lunch.”
“I have no idea what you’re talking about,” Angel said.
“It’s difficult to understand. That’s the point. It took me a lot of time and effort. Anyway, while I was sleeping, I had this weird dream. A boy about ten years old looking exactly like my nephew showed up.
“He greeted me with my name. ‘Hi, Satoshi,’ he said. ‘Congratulations. You won big time.’
“I said, in my dream, ‘Who are you, and what do you want from me?’ I was not surprised that he knew my name. Of course my nephew knows my name. But he was talking in a deep voice, like a man. And it was certainly not the voice of my nephew. Also I was wondering what that business about congratulating me was about.
“He told me. ‘Call me Khalmorot. I came to give you something interesting. It will make you the richest person on Earth. Do you want it?’
“I said, ‘I’m not sure. Having a lot of money seems like a good thing. But the richest person on Earth will always be surrounded by security.’ That was probably a stupid thing to say. But I couldn’t help it. That was really the way I felt at the time. I still feel the same way. And I somehow knew that it was impossible to lie to this Khalmorot guy. So I just told him how I really feel.
“So he answers, ‘That’s actually a smart answer. You’ll want to keep the fact that you’re very rich to yourself. You’ll be able to do so.’
“So I say ‘Sounds good to me, then.’
“And then he explained the basics of the Bitcoin network to me. How the protocol works. How it applies the elliptic curve digital signature algorithm I had just studied. And how it solves the problem of double spending. He said I would find a file on my computer with all of these explanations, and reference code for the first Bitcoin client.
“He also explained that the Bitcoin network would take off, since it is such a superior way of handling payments and storage of value. He explained that his alien race had changed to a uniform currency based on cryptography several hundred million years ago. It was just the natural thing to do, once you had a certain level of technology. Our technology is primitive compared to theirs, of course, but any civilization that has distributed computing like our Internet will get money migrated to crypto currency sooner or later. It would be very much to my advantage to be involved at the very earliest stages.
“Then he advised me that I should start the project and get myself to around 900,000 bitcoins early on, when they were cheap, and then drop completely off the radar. That way, I would have basically unlimited funds, but I could keep that fact to myself. Exactly how I said I wanted it to happen in my first response to him.
“And he also explained that he would leave me with a device built with his advanced alien technology he called the ‘Perfect Purse’. Of course you know that you need some sort of wallet to store your bitcoins. His solution was millions of years ahead of any human technology.
“The ‘Perfect Purse’ looks just like a white hat made out of cloth. You wouldn’t notice that it has any value at all if you didn’t know its power. Sort of like your Glaring Glasses.
“The way it works, when I wear it, I get a direct interface from my brain to the integrated data storage. I can store a private key there just by looking at the key on a piece of paper. And when I wear the Perfect Purse, I can retrieve that information from its built-in memory.
“The cool thing is, anybody else trying to wear that hat will be unable to do anything with it. It will do nothing at all. Or it might actually fry the brain of the person who tries to access the memory, Khalmorot warned me. It has quite a lot of artificial intelligence built in. If somebody was threatening me, trying to force me to reveal the secret, it would know. The person trying to wear the hat in such a situation would be put in a state of permanent agony from which there is no escape possible. It’s very dangerous to try robbing me.
“I have no idea who this Khalmorot guy is and what he wants. Why did he choose me? Why did he give me his advanced alien technology? What are his motives? How was he able to appear in the form of my nephew? I don’t know.
“But sure enough, once I woke up from my dream, I found a white hat lying on the table before me. And once I started up my computer I found a new file on it titled ‘Bitcoin’. It contained the explanation, the reference client code, everything Khalmorot had said it would.
“The code was somewhat strange. It looked like someone had put some effort into making stupid mistakes with it. It would still work, but the coding clearly lacked in elegance. These aliens of course must have coding technology far superior to anything we have. So probably this Khalmorot guy had some trouble pretending to be at our low level. He understood that he couldn’t reveal to humanity that the Bitcoin network is actually alien technology. It would never take off in that case.
“The document also contained some sample private keys, with a note ‘try out the Perfect Purse looking at this’. I did, and I found it worked. I could commit any random string to the Perfect Purse memory, and retrieve it later.
“The rest is history. You know how the Bitcoin network took off in the first couple of years. I dropped out early, just as Khalmorot had suggested, after I got to my first goal of 900,000 bitcoins. And the Perfect Purse is now safely stored in a secure location I won’t even reveal to you. It might be dangerous for you to know that.”
Satoshi had finished his story. He was looking at Angel, eager to hear her reaction.
“That’s the most ridiculous story I ever heard,” Angel said, frowning. “You must really think I’m stupid to assume I would ever believe that.”
Satoshi’s face became slightly pale.
“Only kidding,” Angel said, smiling. “Of course I believe you. Actually, I think that explains who gave us the Glaring Glasses and the time machine back in my World. It probably was that Khalmorot alien guy as well. Remember? I told you they just appeared out of thin air one night. We’re two of a kind.”
“You had me worried there for a moment,” Satoshi said, smiling as well now. “But it sure is a weird story. I still don’t believe it myself sometimes.”
Link to part 25: Senator Nutt Meets Her Sponsor