Monday, October 08, 2012

3 Years in, Bitcoin Digital Money Gains Momentum

Scientific American reports 3 Years in, Bitcoin Digital Money Gains Momentum "Nowadays Bitcoin adopters are providing some clues about the benefits of a decentralized, anonymous, digital currency. For instance, independent merchants use it to receive online payments directly from customers, WikiLeaks uses it to dodge financial barricades, and drug users use Bitcoin to shop anonymously on the Internet's black market. But not everything works smoothly. The system lacks a quick way for people to trade in their physical cash for Bitcoins. Foreign currency exchanges don't deal in Bitcoins, and finding someone to sell them in person remains a huge challenge. A few of the online exchanges that do exist have lost huge amounts of their customers' Bitcoins to hackers—a combined sum now worth over one million dollars—whereas the more stable ones require users to self-identify in a way that undermines the network's anonymity. And although the number of merchants using Bitcoin is growing, one still can't find very many places to spend them. At a conference this month in London, Bitcoin's core developers and many of those who are building applications to make it more user-friendly confronted the currency's setbacks of the past year and planned a course forward intended to elevate it from a niche technophile currency into one that competes with physical money on all levels."

Anyone have any experience using bitcoins? I haven't bothered playing with them.

1 comment:

The Dad said...

I read about it in WIRED several months ago, and it was the first time I'd ever heard of them. Haven't heard anything about them since. When I read the article, my thought was...Why the frack would I want to do this?