(Ramblings below. Just thinking out aloud. Any guidance helpful.)
Currency evolved as a means of exchange of value, an improvement over the barter system. The barter system was in itself an exchange of value but it was not standardised and secondly, because the items exchanged varied from people to people, the barter system did not have the ability to duplicate/compare the value in two separate transactions. It could not “store” value beyond one transaction. If you duplicated the same transaction in another situation with another set of people it may/may not have the same worth or value. It was each specific transactions that decided the worth of the exchange. The value of a transaction changed with the type of item exchanged and with the demand and supply situation of that item exchanged.
Commodity based currencies were the first to evolve, I guess, gold drops, silver coins, bronze coins. All created by nature and shaped into some form by men and introduced into transactions by a royal order. Standardisation arrived. Now, instead of the individuals deciding the worth of the exchange, the royal authority did.
Then came Central Banks and paper currency backed by gold, silver, etc. Now, instead of a small local kingdom, the value of a transaction was set decided by a Government. It created currency and assigned values based on gold stock available.Then the currency was de-linked from gold.
The Government or Central Bank now controlled the circulation and creation of more currency and hence had complete control over the value assigned to the currency.
With BitCoins, the creation of currency is decentralised to individuals instead of Central Banks or Governments. BitCoins interestingly do not represent a currency but a transaction . The worth of a specific transaction is decided by individuals in that specific transaction. Its value goes up and down with the demand/supply. Is BitCoin a standardised Barter System with a central register where all transactions are authorised?