Bjarne Stroustrup, the creator of the C++ programming language, has recently commented that he wished Bitcoin was not programmed with it, saying:
“So, I’m very happy and proud of some of the things that C++ is being used for, and some of the things I wish people wouldn’t do. Bitcoin mining being my favorite example, it uses as much energy as Switzerland and mostly serves criminals.”
In 1985 Bjarne Stroustrup released the C++ programming language after six years of hard work, and it soon proliferated worldwide, becoming the backbone for a tremendous amount of applications and devices. Some 23 years after Stroustrup’s release, Satoshi Nakamoto used the language to program Bitcoin. This makes C++ an essential ingredient in the creation of blockchain technology and the founding of the crypto space.
There has indeed been some debate over Bitcoin mining energy consumption. However, it can be argued that powering an entire global financial network as well as keeping the backbone of the crypto space secure is worth the electricity, especially considering Switzerland is a country with only 8 million people which is roughly the same population as New York City alone.
As for Stroustrup’s comment regarding Bitcoin mostly serving criminals, it is false. All forms of currency are used by criminals, and indeed cash is the most popular currency among criminals since it is the most widespread currency. A Chainalysis study found that less than 1% of Bitcoin transactions were associated with illegal activity in 2018.
Regardless of Stroustrup’s wishes, the beautiful thing about Bitcoin is that it is decentralized, so no one can stop its network, not even the person who created the programming language upon which Bitcoin was built.
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