This is a second in a series exploring some of the revolutionaries in the blockchain space and those deserving consideration on the mythical Blockchain Mt. Rushmore. If Satoshi Nakamoto is credited with creating bitcoin, Andreas Antonopoulos should be credited with taking it to another level.
A consultant on a variety of open source projects since the early 1990’s, it was in 2012 that Antonopoulos jumped into bitcoin with both feet. In fact, he was so intrigued by the potential that he quit his freelancing work and began to cruise the circuit offering talks on the emergence of cryptocurrency – specifically bitcoin – and soon was being looked at as an authority.
His profile exploded in 2013 when he shared his alarm with the Mt. Gox trading platform. His warnings proved warranted – he called it “a systemic risk to bitcoin, a death trap for traders and a business run by the clueless” – when the platform went belly up in February 2014. In filing for bankruptcy protection, Mt. Gox made the revelation that more than 850,000 bitcoins belonging to its customers were missing and likely stolen.
On the heels of his warnings about Mt. Gox, Antonopoulos authored what is considered one of the foundational books about bitcoin. Mastering Bitcoin was released in 2014 and offers a technical deep dive into the technology. Still a staple for those in the bitcoin space, Balaji S. Srinivasan, a General Partner at Andreessen Horowitz says:
“Mastering Bitcoin is the best technical reference available on bitcoin today. And bitcoin is likely to be seen in retrospect as the most important technology of this decade. As such, this book is an absolute must-have for any developer, especially those interested in building applications with the bitcoin protocol.”
Since the release of Mastering Bitcoin, Antonopoulos has seen his profile continue to rise. He has authored three more books – The Internet of Money, The Internet of Money Volume Two, and Mastering Ethereum – and launched the Let’s Talk Bitcoin podcast.
A True Authority
According to his website, in addition to writing, speaking and podcasting, Antonopoulos is a teaching fellow with the University of Nicosia, serves on the Oversight Committee for the Bitcoin Reference Rate at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange, and has appeared as an expert witness in hearings around the world, including the Australian Senate Banking Committee and the Canadian Senate Commerce, Banking and Finance Committee.
Watch for our next Blockchain Mt. Rushmore reveal next week. If you have a name you want to be sure we don’t miss, hit us up in the comments!