Bitcoin or Gold? …Both!

The Bitcoin vs. gold debate frustrates me; these are incredibly valuable monetary tools, why should I limit myself to just one?

Both these currencies share many characteristics that make them great …limited supply, internationally accepted, non-political, etc. but they are however, very, very different creatures.  As such, this argument isn’t entirely without merit, but what we’re arguing about are the pros and cons of ‘real’ vs. decentralized exchange mechanisms.

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New Hampshire entrepreneurs create a Bitcoin ATM

bitcoin-atmBut this ATM doesn’t give you dollars; it takes them and gives you Bitcoins.

To use the machine you feed it dollar bills like you would a vending machine. Built into the front of the machine is a camera which reads QR codes generated by various Bitcoin smart phone apps. Your Bitcoins are then sent to the Bitcoin address associated with the QR code minus a 1% fee.  Transaction completed, anonymously.

The ATM’s creators are hoping to sell the machine to retail businesses, particularly those who are already accepting the currency in their shops. “If we made these machines somewhere around $1,000 to $1,500 each, depending on the commission, they could be able to buy this and make it back within a reasonable period of time.”

You can find more details here.

The Treasury writes a report on its accounting practices

This would be a more appropriate description of the recent reports on the Treasury’s “gold audit”.

The ‘audit’ appears to have been mostly an accounting review. It largely covers reliability of financial reporting, and compliance with applicable laws and regulations and is titled “Audit of the Department of the Treasury’s Schedule of United States Gold Reserves Held by Federal Reserve Banks as of September 30, 2012”

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It was only a matter of time; Kim Dotcom’s ‘Mega’ is now accepting Bitcoin

And Bitcoin is of course the go to currency for those that find themselves on the wrong side of politically hot topics. For Kim Dotcom, that hot topic is file sharing and piracy.

seized Kim’s successful file hosting site, Megaupload.com was dramatically shut down in January 2012 with the seizure of his domain name and a raid on his New Zealand home.  Kim has since launched a re-vamped version of his service at Mega.co.nz .

 

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More places to spend your Bitcoins

Hungry? Need more cell phone minuets? Now you can order pizza and top up your phone with your bitcoins.

PizzaForCoins.com functions as a Pizza/Bitcoin middleman. You order and pay via their website and they complete the order for you. “Going back to the infamous 10,000btc for pizza back in 2010, we’re offering a system for ordering pizzas with your bitcoins!”

Currently the service only works with Domino’s however; plans are in the words to add Pizza Hut and Papa John’s.

BitcoinWireless.com allows you to top up your cellphone credit using Bitcoin.

To use this service you need to enter your country, service provider, email address and phone number. After making a Bitcoin payment to the address generated by the site you receive an email containing the pin number or other instructions from the service provider allowing you to use the newly purchased credit. Currently the service works with 280 carriers in 112 countries.

GoldMoney: QE for dummies

The Banking/Monetary system is both staggeringly simple, they push a button to create new money, and ridiculously complex, fractional reserve ratios, treasury bonds, interest rates, open market operations, M1, M2, etc.

In a new GoldMoney post PeakProsperity.com’s  Chris Martenson helps to explain one part of this bizarre system, Quantitative Easing.

“Despite its sophisticated-sounding name, QE is nothing more complicated than the Fed buying ‘assets’ from commercial banks and other private financial institutions. I put assets in quotes because the Fed does not buy things like land, Stradivarius violins, diamonds, gold, or silver from these institutions, but rather various forms of debt.”

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Erik Voorhees on why Bitcoin and Amazon Coins have nothing in common

In a “rant” posted to the Bitcoin forum, Erik explains why Bitcoin and Amazon Coins, Amazon’s new ‘virtual currency’, are “as different as bumble bees and blueberry muffins.”

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GoldMoney: Why price inflation will take off

Alasdair Macleod explains how “preference for money” impacts price levels and what role a shift in preferences will play in a ‘virtually certain’ new banking crisis.

“We are all aware, through application of logic if nothing else, that if you increase the quantity of money, prices will increase as that extra money is spent. What is less appreciated is that prices can change dramatically due to shifts in preference for money over goods.”

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The new Ripple, a decentralized exchange, a payment system, and a currency all its own

RippleOut very soon, the new version of Ripple has has undergone a dramatic renovation.

Ripple was created by Ryan Fugger in 2006 as a trust network where people can grant each other credit, and anyone can ‘be their own bank’. The project has since been acquired by a team of developers including Mt. Gox creator Jed McCaleb. Ryan’s trust network is still there, but it is now one feature of a much expanded system.

The new features of the soon to be open source software include the possibility for a decentralized currency exchange, a p2p transaction network, “Gateways” for bringing other currencies into the system, and Ripples (XRP), a new digital currency.

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