In the beginning, there was Bitcoin. Born underground into a broken and over-regulated world, it was forged by a small but passionate segment of the population that yearned to be free. Living in the darkness has its perils, however: undertones of mystery and illegality swirled as the coin became infamous on black market sites like "The Silk Road," where it was synonymous with hackers, and to their delight, slow information penetration was epidemic.
You might say that in this paradigm, there is no room for growth-- let alone competition. You might even say that Bitcoin should stand alone, and Bitcoin's plague of network hyper-congestion, and unsustainable fees for simply transacting are the "cost of doing business.” Thank Zeus, to one brave developer by the name of Charlie Lee, this was ludicrous, loathsome, and ready for change. Standing up at his desk at Google one sunny afternoon, while between projects of overhauling YouTube and Chromebook, he announced to the world: "LET THERE BE LITE!"
Over the next few months, Charlie became versed in Cryptocurrency, experimenting with creating a second-generation coin "Fairbrix" which eyed security enhancements and equitable distribution of coins over "Tenebrix." The source code was invalid, but Charlie did not despair, and just 11 days later, Oct 13 2011, there was Litecoin. A principled approach was fundamental. There was to be no “pre-mined” coins for the unjust enrichment of the developers; there was to be a cap on the total numbers of coins to lend value and incentive; there was to be a clear, superior vision amidst the fray of greed and murk. The community asked, Litecoin delivered.
“Faster, Smarter, Cheaper” is Litecoin’s proud reputation. 2.5 minute “blocks” compared to Bitcoins 10-minute time; the first to market in March with “Segwit,” a future-forward upgrade with Bitcoin signaling intent only August 1st, and the golden grail: drastically lower transaction fees (as of this writing 12 cents compared to Bitcoin’s 2 dollars.)
There is a flood of newly inspired Cryptocurrency enthusiasts waking up every day and taking their first breath in the world of “crypto.” Each with his or her own motivations: Financial Freedom? Unite Humanity? Friend from work won’t shut up about it? Whatever the case, when people look into Litecoin, they like what they see. When people use Litecoin, they tell a friend. It’s an impressive piece of technology in an otherwise confusing and crowded marketplace.
No one knows with certainty where Litecoin will end up. Talk of a “moon landing” pervades online discourse as a growing community of enthusiastic, dedicated Litecoin adopters gleefully thrust their trophy to the sky, and imagine a brighter, perhaps, Lite-er future.
By Joshua Welling (Jaw709)