zcopley/Flickr (cc by-nc-nd)
A Bitcoin card.
I went on "AirTalk" with Larry Mantle yesterday to talk all things Bitcoin. It was a lively show, made all the more lively by Larry's admission that, like a lot of folks, he didn't know a thing about Bitcoin until about a week ago. I was able to fill him in and field a few comments during the broadcast.
What seems to blow people's minds about Bitcoin, at least initially, is that it's more of an idea about the money of the future than it is a well-functioning alternative currency today. I guess you could say it's in beta right now. And that means it's picked up a renegade reputation, by virtue of its popularity for buying drugs and porn.
However, in the months that I've been writing about BTC — And trading it! — I've learned that the cyber-currency has a lot going for it. Not least is the extreme sophistication of the process by which it's created. I think there's a good chance that what's useful about BTC could be adapted by government-backed fiat currencies, like the U.S. dollar, as they evolve from being fragments of the 19th and 20th centuries to being the media of exchange in the 21st.
I'm not writing off Bitcoin, by the way! Even with the loss of BTC exchange TradeHill this week, it seems to be hanging in there. And with the Euro crisis still raging, it's not as if all is rosy in the land of fiat currencies.
Oh, and by the way, I finally got around to watching the famous "Bitcoin for Dummies" episode of "The Good Wife." It's an excellent introduction!