Ethereum is the second-largest cryptocurrency platform by market capitalization, behind Bitcoin. It is a decentralized open source blockchain featuring smart contract functionality. Ether is the cryptocurrency generated by Ethereum miners as a reward for computations performed to secure the blockchain. Ethereum serves as the platform for over 260,000 different cryptocurrencies, including 47 of the top 100 cryptocurrencies by market capitalization.
Ethereum provides a decentralized virtual machine, the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM), which can execute scripts using an international network of public nodes. The virtual machine’s instruction set, in contrast to others like Bitcoin Script, is Turing-complete. “Gas”, an internal transaction pricing mechanism, is used to mitigate spam and allocate resources on the network.
1904: The Veblenian Dichotomy distinguishes between institutions and their technologies.
1918: Taylorism, the original “management science,” is first documented by HB Drury.
1934: “Fordism” management style gains prominence for being efficient and oppressive.
1937: Ronald Coase publishes “Theory of the Firm,” the economic rationale for why firms grow which outlines a new branch of microeconomics. It will have an even greater impact once markets and firms are connected via cryptonetworks.
1956: Government antitrust suit against AT&T bars the firm from entering the computer business.
1956: Hacker movement emerges at MIT and Stanford.
1956: IBM releases the first computer hard disk drive, the 2,000-pound-plus, refrigerator-size IBM 305 RAMAC. The hard drive utilized magnetic disk storage enabling data retrieval without a delay.
1959: Jack Kilby develops the interconnected circuit into a chip form which will eventually be used in almost every electronic device.
1963: Ivan Sutherland, the Father of Computer Graphics develops the Sketchpad program which is the first program to use a graphical user interface, as opposed to a text-based one. He also developed one of the earliest forms of virtual reality.
1964: The National Society of Professional Engineers publishes a code of ethics. It’s still taught today.
1964: The poem “All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace” emblematic of Tech-utopianism. Here’s an excerpt:
“I like to think
(it has to be!)
of a cybernetic ecology
where we are free of our labors”
1968: The Mother of all Demos, engineer Douglas Engelbart illustrates Integrated Computer Systems — the use of lots of recent technologies in conjunction with each other — including on-screen windows, hypertext, graphics, file linking, revision control, video conferencing, the computer mouse, and word processing. It will enable computing to become personal rather than only a machine for specialists.
1969: The Union of Concerned Scientists is formed at MIT. This will change the direction of computing and scientific research away from developing military technologies toward solving pressing environmental and social problems.
1969: UNIX created by AT&T. UNIX is a family of multitasking, multiuser computer operating systems. All future operating systems will take form Unix.
1969: Automated Teller Machine.
1969: Formation of the Arpanet — four computers linked in 1969.
1970: Scientists at Corning produce a fiber optic of ultrapure glass that is capable of transmitting light well enough for telecommunications. This has helped bring faster voice, video, and data transmission.
1971: Prof. John Galbraith coins the term “the Technostructure” for business bureaucracy, which refers to a loosely organized collection of interests, decision-making bodies, and individuals with specialized knowledge and experience that direct the mechanical operations and technological development in modern society.
1974: DARPA develops Internet TCP/IP protocol suite.
1976: The Cray-1, the first commercially developed supercomputer, is installed in the Los Alamos National Laboratory.
1977: The Apple II, Commodore Pet and Radio Shack’s TRS-80 are introduced to the market. We know how this story ends.
1981: Writer William Gibson coins the term “cyberspace” to mean a digital dystopia where corporations rule.
1982: AT&T sued by the Department of Justice for antitrust violations and is broken up. If you love and use Verison, thank the government. If you hate Verison, thank the government.
1982: Fifteen-year-old Rich Skrenta creates an application called Elk Cloner as a prank — and ends up creating the first virus to spread outside its home network.
1983: Richard Stallman releases GNU/Linux, a free OS. Open source begins its dominance.
1983: Computer Professionals for Social Responsibility creates the Code of Ethics for cryptographers.
1983: David Chaum creates centralized digital cash system. Say hello to public key cryptography for money.
1985: Richard Stallman founds Free Software Foundation in protest of commercial software practices.
1985: General Motors experimented with employee company ownership of one of its car company, Saturn.
1989: Sir Tim Berners-Lee spawns the World Wide Web with the Hypertext Transfer Protocol, or HTTP.
1990: Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) is formed. It is now one of the leading nonprofit organizations for defending civil liberties in the digital world.
1990: Linked timestamping proposed by Haber and Stornetta. Blockchain technologies utilize timestamping today.
1991: The term “New Jersey style” is popularized by “The Rise of ‘Worse is Better’.” Today, Ethereum developers use an iteration of this philosophy, “move fast and break things”.
1992: Intel Chief Scientist Timothy May publishes the Crypto-Anarchist Manifesto.
1992: Cypherpunks Mailing List starts, attracting people like Julian Assange and Satoshi Nakamoto.
1993: Eric Hughes publishes the A Cypherpunk’s Manifesto.
1994: The Today show infamously tries to explain the “@” sign.
1995: Richard Barbrook publishes “The Californian Ideology.” Read about how accurate he was 20 years later.
1996: John Perry Barlow publishes the “Declaration of Independence of Cyberspace”.
1996: The open source movement emerges as a marketing campaign for free software use in business.
1997: Eric Raymond presents “Cathedral versus Bazaar,” an ode to open source development.
1997: Adam Back invents Hashcash, a denial of service protection mechanism for P2P networks.
1998: Wei Dai publishes B-money proposal.
1999: Freenet launches, creating a censor-resistant document store and networking suite.
2000: Microsoft Windows Chief Jim Allchin calls open source “an intellectual property destroyer.”
2001: Steve Ballmer calls Linux “a cancer.”
2001: Mac OS X launches, based on free and open source Unix variant OpenBSD.
2001: Agile Development methodology launches, bringing hacker operational patterns to business.
2001: Wikipedia gains traction, sparking the model of user-generated content.
2002: Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers launch 802.16 antennas which transmit Internet access up to a 30-mile radius at speeds comparable to DSL.
2005: Nick Szabo suggests a “distributed title registry” or ledger as a common resource.
2009: Satoshi Nakamoto publishes the Bitcoin whitepaper.
2012: Microsoft integrates Linux into its enterprise Azure platform.
2013: Ethereum whitepaper is released galvanized by a few founding members, including Vitalik Buterin, Joseph Lubin, Gavin Wood.
2014: ConsenSys is founded and begins incubating startups that build decentralized applications as well as companies building infrastructure tools and applications for the Ethereum blockchain.
2015: Ethereum mainnet launches. Woot, Woot.
2016: The first Decentralized Autonomous Organization is hacked resulting in a fork of Ethereum(ETH) and Ethereum Classic(ETC).
2017: Ethereum initial coin offerings take off, sparking an explosion of cryptocurrency and blockchain focused companies.
2018: The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission states that Ether (ETH) is not a security.
2018: 1.5% of total ETH supply becomes locked in MakerDAO sparking adoption of the Dai stablecoin.
2019 – an Ethereum foundation employee named Virgil Griffith was arrested by the US government for presenting at a blockchain conference in North Korea.
2020 – Ethereum launched on August 4, at 1 pm UTC
2020 –Ethereum Launches ETH 2.0 Multiclient Testnet – Medalla: Hudson Jameson announced that “Eth 2.0 is a success, it is going really well right now” and hopes that the transition from Ethereum 1.0 to Ethereum 2.0 mainnet will be smooth.
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