Taaki in Bratislava, 2012
|Born||February 6, 1988|
|Known for||Bitcoin, OpenBazaar, Crystal Space, Game development|
Amir Taaki (born 6 February 1988) is a British-Iranian computer programmer and video game developer. Taaki is best known as a bitcoin project developer and for pioneering many open source projects. Forbes listed Taaki in their top 30 entrepreneurs of 2014.
Amir Taaki was born 6 February 1988 in London, the eldest of three children of an Scottish-English mother and an Iranian father. From an early age Taaki took an interest in computer technology, teaching himself computer programming.
After briefly attending three British universities, Taaki gravitated to the free software movement. Taaki assisted in the creation of SDL Collide, an extension of Simple DirectMedia Layer, an open source library used by video game developers.
In 2006, Taaki became heavily involved in Crystal Space development under the pseudonym of genjix. He also developed a number of video games making use of free software, including the adventure game Crystal Core and the futuristic racer game Ecksdee. Taaki was also a participant in the Blender project Yo Frankie!.
In 2009 and 2010, Taaki made his living as a professional poker player. His experience with online gambling attracted him to the bitcoin project. He founded a UK bitcoin exchange called "Britcoin", which was succeeded in 2011 by a new British exchange called Intersango, in which he was a principal developer, which was closed after their UK bank account was restricted following an investigation by Metro Bank.
In April 2011, Taaki and Donald Norman established the Bitcoin Consultancy, a group focused on bitcoin project development.
Taaki created the first full reimplementation of the bitcoin protocol named libbitcoin, worked on the bitcoin client Electrum and created other command line utilities around bitcoin and the network. The bitcoin standardisation procedure (Bitcoin Improvement Proposals or BIPs) was started by Taaki.
In 2014, together with Cody Wilson, he launched the Dark Wallet project after a crowdfunding run on IndieGoGo which raised over $50,000. Taaki, along with other developers from Airbitz, Inc. (producers of a bitcoin business directory and mobile bitcoin wallet) created a prototype for a decentralised marketplace called "DarkMarket" in 2014, at a hackathon in Toronto, which was forked into the OpenBazaar project.
Taaki has been outspoken in favour of Internet activism such as Anonymous, likening them to modern day freedom-fighters. A long-time contributor to free software, he advocates total data freedom. Taaki has labelled censorship policies as being a wedge towards ever-increasing censorship. He proposes a shift away from specialist thinking towards a creative society of generalist knowledge workers.
Taaki is a speaker of Esperanto, which he promotes as an auxiliary country-neutral international language to preserve local languages. He writes that Esperanto serves to break down barriers and help the flow of media across cultural boundaries.
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- SDL Collide, Sourceforge, sourceforge.net/
- "Blender & CrystalSpace" in Blender Conference 2006, Youtube.
- "Pablo Martin Moreno and Amir Taaki," Blender Conference 2006 Proceedings, www.blender.org/
- 2006 Crystal Space Conference Report, Crystal Space, www.crystalspace3d.org/
- Yo Frankie developer list, www.yofrankie.org/
- James Ball, "Bitcoins: how do they work?" The Guardian, 22 June 2011.
- "About Us: Personal Statements," Intersango, britcoin.co.uk
- "Intersango Status Update" bitcointalk.org.
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- YouTube. youtube.com.
- "N-1". n-1.cc.
- n-1.cc Esperanto page
- "Amir Taaki and the Dark Wallet". IHB.
- Siddique, Haroon (11 June 2013). "G8: riot police enter central London building occupied by protesters". Retrieved 8 July 2015.
- Copestake, Jen (19 September 2014). "Hiding currency in the Dark Wallet". Retrieved 8 July 2015.
- Interview with "Gavin Andresen and Amir Taaki, Bitcoin,", This Week in Startups, video on YouTube
- Bitcoin: the fastest growing currency in the world – video, The Guardian