my digital garden — a place for my ideas to grow and blossom.

My Crypto Origin Story

825 words, 4 min read

Just thought that I ought to update the website since it’s been quite a long while since I last posted an article.

The purpose of this website was mainly to track my personal growth and projects I’m working on. This clearly didn’t work out in the past year given the lack of articles. Allow me to explain myself.

My Crypto Origin Story

During the same time I was busy coding my website (back in June 2020), I was also reading up on finance/investing. Concepts such as passive income and FIRE appealed a lot to me as a 19-year old with minimal small savings.

While researching on the different asset classes, I chanced upon Bitcoin. As a technophile, I was attracted to idea of holding cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin since this asset class was literally the intersection between finance and technology. This led me to spending days on the basics of blockchain technology (or at least enough for a functional understanding of how they work).

I still remember the first time I bought a little bit of both Bitcoin and Ethereum (BTC & ETH were valued at ~ $10,000 and $350 respectively at that time).

It was like buying the latest piece of technology e.g. the newest iPhone. I saw it as a tech toy more than anything else. I made my first Ethereum transaction, which involved having to create an Ethereum wallet and sending my ETH from an exchange to the wallet address. The rest was history.

Meanwhile, I was also diving into traditional investing (e.g. stocks, bonds, ETFs) and even came up with my own notes of what I understood about the market. The notes evolved into an article (Read: Jumping into the rabbit hole of traditional investing 🐰🕳) which I only decided to post 7 months later to fill the void of my otherwise empty website.

Ironically, I sold off all my stock holdings from my brokerage account (which wasn’t a lot to begin with) two months before I posted the TradFi article on my website. It was then when I decided to go all in on crypto.

Deep into the crypto rabbit hole 🐇🕳

I started reading extensively on the entire crypto ecosystem – smart contracts, Web3, EVM chains, stablecoins, DeFi, NFTs, DAOs. Most of the free time I had was spent in the library (when there wasn’t a lockdown), researching on the various facets of the cryptoverse.

I strongly believe crypto will bring about an influx of decentralized protocols that will forge the next era of Internet applications, disrupting the existing incumbent tech giants. Decentralization threatens a shift in power from a few powerful intermediaries to the masses. A world with a tokenized economy is an outcome that is entirely possible in the future, and I believe that cannot be ignored.

The growth potential for this entire asset class of digital assets is unparalleled, and it is an opportunity I don’t plan to miss. Given that crypto is still a nascent industry, there is still lots of market information asymmetry that the retail investor can take advantage of to generate an edge over the market. Lurk around forums and Discord channels long enough, and you are bound to develop specific knowledge in a particular facet of crypto.

During my research, I wrote notes for self-learning on Roam Research, condensing all the articles and documentations I have gone through into my own words.

Following the philosphy of Show Your Work (coined by Austin Kleon), I eventually decided to convert my work into a public resource hosted on a Notion page, for everyone to view: crypto.ivan-ang.com.

This is a culmination of months of research and writing done during my free time, not to forget the countless of hours spent figuring out Notion and revamping the notes to make them more accessible by topic.

Moving forward..

Apart from crypto, I have also tried to work on my computing skills. I have finally completed Harvard’s CS50 course in mid-2021, with the exception of the final project (which I don’t intend to complete for now as I rather focus on other projects). I am also trying to learn a little bit of Solidity (a smart contract language), which is pretty cool.

I got a bike in the past few month (there’s only so much you can do in Singapore 😄), and it has proven to be one of my greatest purchase of 2021. One thing I like to do is listening to podcasts at 2x speed while cycling along the park connector. Exercising while learning new things at the same time? The productivity geek in me would be proud!

Moving forward, please forgive me if I continue to neglect this blog to focus on crypto. Starting December 2021, I will be working in a crypto startup as a DeFi analyst intern and I literally can’t wait for what’s ahead! In the mean time, follow me on Twitter for further updates on what I’m working on. Ciao!