A lifestyle capitalist with a broad range of interests from philosophy, theology, and history to psychology and physics, he’s been involved with cryptography since the 1990s.
Paul is a co-founder of the Cryptohippie privacy service and author of Free-Man’s Perspective. Prior to this, his construction and engineering career saw him called as an expert witness in numerous legal cases and recruited as a consultant to several organizations.
Rosenberg developed and taught 19 continuing education courses for Iowa State University’s College of Engineering. He also co-founded the Fiber Optic Association and wrote the first ever standard for the installation of fiber optic cables in buildings.
On top of all this, privately, Paul was a part of the original group of programmers and hackers which served as a catalyst for those who would develop modern blockchain technology. In other words, what led to Bitcoin.
In late 1992, a small group that met monthly in the San Francisco Bay Area, and was humorously termed “cypherpunks” – derived from cipher and cyberpunk, launched The Cypherpunks mailing list, which by 1994 had 700 subscribers.
It was an active forum with technical discussion ranging over mathematics, cryptography and computer science, as well as some political and philosophical discussion, personal arguments and attacks, etc.
Fast-forward to 2019, and Rosenberg recently published The Untold Story of the Greatest Crypto Project Ever.
While what these people did wasn’t entirely hidden, it was only partly public. For reasons that will become clear as you hear this story, no one on the inside has wanted to talk about it until now.
They probably didn’t do much that was technically illegal, but none of them wanted any “special attention” from the powers that shouldn’t be.
“Nonetheless, I think it’s time…” says Paul:
For Anarchast episode 464, I had the chance to speak with the man himself about everything from the 1990’s free nation project, a whole cryptographic financial system completed by 2002, to perpetual travelers, Extropians, spies, and the real purpose of Wikileaks.
We also discussed the early solution to the double-spend problem, origins of proof-of-work, why PGP and EGold were so important, Satoshi and building a better future.
Enjoy the full interview: