As an academic discipline, Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies encompass so many other fields of learning that it can sometimes feel challenging to keep up. However, you don’t need a Ph.D. to understand Bitcoin and crypto. Reading some of the best books on cryptocurrencies can give you a well-rounded understanding of Bitcoin and the entire blockchain space in general.
Bitcoin Billionaires by Ben Mezrich
Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss. Roger Ver. Charlie Shrem. Eric Voorhees.
If you’ve been following crypto, you’ve likely come across these names on Twitter or elsewhere. The Harvard-educated Winklevoss twins, in particular, are well-regarded as Bitcoin ambassadors for the incredible work they do in bringing Bitcoin to the traditional world of investment.
But how did the twins come to bet big on Bitcoin so soon after their messy lawsuit against Mark Zuckerberg in which they accused him of stealing the idea for Facebook?
Ben Mezrich, the bestselling author whose books have been turned into all-time favorite movies like 21 and the Social Network, takes us on a trip down memory lane from the first time Tyler and Cameron heard about Bitcoin through their massive bet on the cryptocurrency. Throughout the story, Mezrich introduces a glittering a cast of Bitcoin OGs, a term reserved for the entrepreneurs and builders that contributed to the early years of Bitcoin.
Bitcoin Billionaires will take us on an exciting and unexpected journey while revealing a fascinating economic future. The book is packed with helpful information, such as the Winklevoss method for securing Bitcoin and inspiring stories from way back before Bitcoin had gone mainstream.
The Bitcoin Standard by Saifedean Ammous – Sagi Bakshi’s pick (CEO @ Coinmama)
The Bitcoin Standard, by Saifedean Ammous, is one of the most widely read books about cryptocurrencies today. First released in 2018, the Bitcoin Standard traces the history of money from barter to Bitcoin before explaining the operation and value proposition of Bitcoin.
By studying Bitcoin’s influence on society’s political, social, and economic dimensions, Ammous claims that Bitcoin is bringing us back to the era of sound money, that is, money whose supply cannot be manipulated suddenly by central banks. Maybe you’re familiar with the ‘gold standard,’ a monetary system where all fiat currencies were pegged to gold that existed before 1971. According to Ammous, it’s Bitcoin, not gold, that is driving humanity’s return to sound money, leading many to christen Bitcoin as ‘digital gold.’
He also details how Bitcoin might become the new standard for payments and transactions, as you can imagine from the name. This book is a fantastic choice if you seek a quick but accurate introduction to Bitcoin and the cryptocurrency revolution.
The Sovereign Individual by – Raz Gerber’s Pick (Chief Product Strategy @ Coinmama)
Written in anticipation of the turn of the millennium, the Sovereign Individual remains an exceptional guidebook to the transformations of the 21st century two decades later. James Dale Davidson and Lord William Rees-Mogg, two investment advisors that predicted radical events like the Wall Street crash of 1987 and the collapse of the Soviet Union, gaze into the 21st century to uncover the technological transformations that will change the face of humanity forever.
The Sovereign Individual lays out human history in four phases and outlines the methods required to adapt to the next phase of civilization. According to the book, there have only been two major phase shifts in the history of economic life. First, there was a shift from hunter-gatherer societies to agriculture and farming and, much later, a shift from farming to mechanized economies powered by the Industrial revolution. We’re currently in the midst of the third and most profound shift in the history of economics, transforming from an industrial to an information-based society.
While Davidson and Reese-Mogg released the Sovereign Individual a decade before Bitcoin was born, its messages of economic freedom and the diminishing role of government in economic life resonate strongly across the Bitcoin community.
Programming Bitcoin by Jimmy Song – Advanced
Take a deep dive into Bitcoin technology with this book from one of the most knowledgeable Bitcoin and Bitcoin programming instructors. Author Jimmy Song demonstrates how to create a Bitcoin library from the ground up in Python. You will discover the fundamentals of this popular cryptocurrency and its blockchain payment system, including the arithmetic, blocks, network, and transactions.
By the conclusion of the book, you will have coded all of the components required for a Bitcoin library, and you will have a better understanding of how this cryptocurrency operates below the hood. Learn how to generate transactions, obtain data from peers, and send transactions over a network. This practical book will get you started looking at Bitcoin uses for your organization or a new career path.
Becoming a Disciple of Satoshi
To understand Bitcoin on a deeper level, one must acquire knowledge in a range of different fields. Learning about cryptographic hash functions, public-key cryptography, and distributed ledger technology is essential to understanding how Bitcoin works under the hood. On the other hand, one can’t fully comprehend Bitcoin without some economics and game-theory knowledge. Furthermore, areas of study like anthropology and history can be helpful when putting the history of money into perspective to understand how Bitcoin evolves all other forms of money.
It might seem overwhelming at first, but becoming a disciple of Satoshi means embarking on a lifelong learning and skills development journey. Reading just one of the best books on cryptocurrency will take your expertise up a notch and put you on your way to becoming a Bitcoin master yourself.