A recent discovery by tech blogger Andy Baio has revealed that a copy of Satoshi Nakamoto’s Bitcoin whitepaper can be found on any Mac running recent versions of macOS, including macOS Ventura. The file is hidden and can be accessed through a simple Terminal command or navigating Finder.

Baio found the whitepaper included as a sample document for a device called “Virtual Scanner II,” which is not loaded by default for some users. This discovery is not entirely new, as a user named bernd178 found it buried within the Image Capture Utility in April 2021. However, the inclusion of the whitepaper in every current iteration of Apple’s Mac operating system since macOS Mojave (10.14.0) remains a mystery.

The filename of the whitepaper is “simpledoc.pdf,” and it is only 184 KB in size, leading some to speculate that it was included as a lightweight multipage PDF for testing purposes, never meant to be seen by end-users.

It is unclear why Apple chose to incorporate the Bitcoin whitepaper into its operating system, but some have suggested that it could be an act of defiance against Craig Wright, who has been attempting to copyright the whitepaper and suing places that host it.

Apple has not commented on the inclusion of the whitepaper or the purpose of Virtual Scanner II. It is also unknown whether Apple will remove the whitepaper in future updates of macOS.

In conclusion, the mysterious inclusion of the Bitcoin whitepaper in every recent version of macOS has left many scratching their heads. While some speculate that it could be an act of defiance against Wright, others believe it was included for testing purposes. Regardless of its purpose, it is yet another hidden file that most users may never know existed.

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