A Handy Guide To Decoding The Winklevoss Twins Talking About Space
Do you remember the Winklevoss twins aka the Winklevii? They’re the dudes who maybe sorta made a thing that Mark Zuckerberg stoled to make Facebook which resulted in a never-ending lawsuit that eventually netted them a pile of money. Now they’ve taken that actual money and turned it into imaginary money aka bitcoin to fund Richard Branson’s fever dream of sending spaceships to disasters. We think.
Cameron and I have decided to use our bitcoin to take the plunge, or rather propulsion, into space. Why? Because Bitcoin and Sir Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic are two technologies that meaningfully represent our focus at Winklevoss Capital – the reduction of pain-points and friction in an effort to build a better world.
“The reduction of pain-points and friction.” That is a thing someone, namely multi-millionaire Tyler Winklevoss, actually wrote. No, it makes no sense whatsoever, but let us take this moment to remind you THIS DUDE HAS MILLIONS OF DOLLARS so there.
You really need, as the kids say, to go read the whole thing, because the Winklevii have a website for their incredibly well-funded venture capital firm that looks vaguely like the first WordPress blog you ever made.
Also, too. Tyler Winklevoss has helpfully included the whole of his book report on the history of world exploration.
By the early 16th century, Vasco da Gama would chart a maritime route from Europe to India via the Cape of Good Hope, while astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus would argue that the earth did not stand still, but instead revolved around the Sun and simultaneously its own axis. Ferdinand Magellan’s expedition would successfully circumnavigate the globe, confirming that the world was indeed round, not flat, and shepherd in an epoch of post-medieval thought.
What the hell, you ask, does this have to do with their pretend electronic Bitcoin monies and where they have invested it? We don’t really know either! We think they are giving their money to Richard Branson so that Richard Branson can send people into space. But we are not really sure because there is SO MUCH JARGON here.
Since their inceptions, Bitcoin and Virgin Galactic have been writing the next chapter in our history books. While one is ushering in a new era of post-currency, entirely ledger-based decentralized financial systems, the other is ringing in a new era of post-aircraft, sub-orbital spacecraft-based travel systems. But perhaps the most fascinating part is that Cameron and I are not alone in believing that this is only the beginning. While it is initially exciting to focus on bitcoin (lowercase “b”) the asset and low-earth orbit the experience, it is perhaps more interesting to imagine the possibilities of Bitcoin (capital “B”) the decentralized financial protocol and Virgin Galactic the suborbital space protocol.
If someone can decode that for us in the comments, we will give you one million dollars. Haha we will not give you anything because we are poor and have no one giving us seed money.
The bitcoin (no idea if we are talking about small-b bitcoin or big-B bitcoin here, sorry) and space connection will also revolutionize how we respond to natural disasters maybe?
Hypothetically, a natural disaster strikes a remote part of the world during a long holiday weekend. Via the Virgin Galactic platform, emergency responders and volunteers are boots on the ground in less than two hours. Simultaneously, small payload satellites are launched into space overhead. […] Financial aid and charitable donations that would normally incur transaction costs and take days to arrive can now be sent instantly and for free via the Bitcoin network.
So we will all pay for Richard Branson to rescue people from tsunamis by giving money to a magical currency that has a nasty habit of getting stolen or disappearing, but will certainly be totally stable with a massive influx of donations. Also, why the hell does the natural disaster have to happen on the long weekend? Does Richard Branson not get to send spaceships to Haiti if a hurricane happens on a Wednesday?
Also too wait a second. Isn’t Richard Branson already disgustingly rich and funding his space exploration thingy all by his lonesome? Apparently not. Millionaires just throw money at each other for fun, probably.
We can’t quite tell if the Winklevii themselves will head into space thanks to this investment, but let us take a moment to say bon voyage and you will probably not be missed.