Feb 2023: I don’t believe in rewriting history, so I’m going to leave this post up. But in the seven years since I wrote it, a lot has happened, and I now know it was a mistake to trust Craig Wright as much as I did. I regret getting sucked into the “who is (or isn’t) Satoshi” game, and I refuse to play that game any more.
I believe Craig Steven Wright is the person who invented Bitcoin.
I was flown to London to meet Dr. Wright a couple of weeks ago, after an initial email conversation convinced me that there was a very good chance he was the same person I’d communicated with in 2010 and early 2011. After spending time with him I am convinced beyond a reasonable doubt: Craig Wright is Satoshi.
Part of that time was spent on a careful cryptographic verification of messages signed with keys that only Satoshi should possess. But even before I witnessed the keys signed and then verified on a clean computer that could not have been tampered with, I was reasonably certain I was sitting next to the Father of Bitcoin.
During our meeting, I saw the brilliant, opinionated, focused, generous – and privacy-seeking – person that matches the Satoshi I worked with six years ago. And he cleared up a lot of mysteries, including why he disappeared when he did and what he’s been busy with since 2011. But I’m going to respect Dr. Wright’s privacy, and let him decide how much of that story he shares with the world.
We love to create heroes – but also seem to love hating them if they don’t live up to some unattainable ideal. It would be better if Satoshi Nakamoto was the codename for an NSA project, or an artificial intelligence sent from the future to advance our primitive money. He is not, he is an imperfect human being just like the rest of us. I hope he manages to mostly ignore the storm that his announcement will create, and keep doing what he loves– learning and research and innovating.
I am very happy to be able to say I shook his hand and thanked him for giving Bitcoin to the world.