Grokking Bitcoin Review: Chapter 2


Chapter 2 of Grokking Bitcoin gets into cryptography, and is titled, “Cryptographic hash functions and digital signatures”.

Its table of contents for this chapter covers:

  • The cookie token spreadsheet (concrete example of how Bitcoin works)
  • Cryptographic hashes
  • Exercises
  • Digital Signatures
  • More Exercises

This chapter goes more in-depth about Bitcoin and starts to get nitty-gritty.


The exercises for the first section were more difficult than I expected. I don’t always pay 100% attention when reading, so to solve them I had to go back and re-read a couple times, and think about what was being asked of me to solve.

2.4 – I really struggled with this exercise and did not get it at first at all. I totally understood the binary explanation, but I didn’t get the decimal explanation at all. But, once I realized that the hexadecimal functions similar to the binary, but instead of raising 2nd power, we raise 16th power, I got it.

2.7 – Key Phrase: Variant of the fourth property.

The rest of the chapter gets into digital signing. Right now, for me at least, I’m familiar with this entire process. One thing I’m interested in though, is how the public key gets derived from the private key. This is something I can check out in my own time though, and learn about.

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