If we take the time to search in Google the word " Bitcoin " we get thousands of pages explaining that it is a decentralized system based on P2P networks using an efficient method of encryption, which is not very helpful if we want to understand how Bitcoins really work . Perhaps it is best to start at the beginning and ask ourselves: What is money? And to this end we will analyze the currency used in one of the islands of Micronesia.
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Written by @DerrickJFreeman
11:19am Wed, Feb 19, 2014 - Traveling through Boston's South Station? Next to Track 6 on the train platform, you'll notice a mysterious device that has appeared. It's the first public Bitcoin ATM in the US. The machine is about 2 feet tall and 1 foot wide and rests on a high table. A banner beside the device reads "LIBERTY TELLER: Bitcoin in 30 seconds". Welcome to 2014, where it's now faster to get bitcoin on your way through South Station than to get a coffee.
If you've spent any time in the bitcoin space, you've seen these machines before. They're the Lamassu model, designed and produced by a team of brilliant Bitcoin Mavericks in New Hampshire. You can feed in over 50 different currencies of paper money, and the machine sends the value in bitcoin right to your smartphone. The Philly-based company Liberty Teller launched their service today. The above image appeared in a post on reddit, apparently from a traveler passing through South Station, surprised by the release.
According to the website at LibertyTeller.com, a map of "locations" suggests Liberty Tellers will be releasing more machines in other popular venues in the coming year, but owners Kyle Powers and Chris Yim are quiet about details. I am traveling to use the Liberty Teller tonight and will publish a video report on it tomorrow to BitcoinPHL.com. -- @DerrickJFreeman
Shai also neglects to mention the fact that merchants don't have to take any currency risk at all by using providers such as Coinbase and Bitpay. Those companies allow you to accept Bitcoin and have the USD value of the Bitcoin at the time of the transaction deposited into their bank accounts the next day for a zero (Coinbase) to one percent (Bitpay) fee. I find it very disappointing that he didn't mention that there are companies that are successfully operating by removing currency risk as a factor for merchant adoption; Especially in an article that claims to be addressing that very issue. If I neglected to mention the important role that Coinbase and Bitpay play in merchant adoption of Bitcoin, then shame on me, but I'm pretty sure I did...
He also makes me sound like a used car salesman... but whatever. I can't help it if I exude confidence when I'm talking about something that I have extensive knowledge about. Read it yourself!
Currently, most of our data is stored centrally. This makes it extremely easy for bad actors to compromise 3rd party systems and take whatever they want. The recent data breach at Target and other major retailers is a glaring example of this. Trusting 3rd partys to go to the lengths necessary to properly secure our information is a losing proposition. Frankly, I don't even think it's something they could do effectively even if they choose to devote massive amounts of time and resources to the issue.
This is issue is of particular importance in the Bitcoin eco-system. While Bitcoin, the protocol, operates in a decentralized fashion, the services and exchanges that lay on top of it are not. Many times we don't even know who owns these services. There is still much work to be done in this area. Personally, I can't wait for the day that there a re decentralized exchanges, mixers, wallets, and whatever else the amazing minds in this industry come up with. Give him your email if you'd like to be notified when his book is released. I've been fortunate enough to get a preview. It'll be worth the read!
Read Kristov's Post here
I'll be suggesting a Bitcoin social Meetup there to welcome him to the community!
Inkster, a Philadelphia start-up with a focus on creative T-shirts and their artists, to accept Bitcoin!
Inkster is a startup based out of the new Philly Impact Hub the shared working space that replaced 3rd Ward. I was there today. I have to say, it was an impressive facility. Fortunately, the owner of Inkster was caught in traffic, so I was able to chat up one of the founders about Bitcoin and why they should accept it. He seemed interested and I have a feeling they may bite, if only for the publicity.
Inkster's founder, Douglas Wong, is quite the character. Filled with energy and a overflowing with passion for his new venture. From what I could gather during our rapid-fire conversation, Inkster is trying to be a place where artists can have their artwork printed affordably, in high quality and full color, on nice Tee's for super cheap. I won't quote numbers here, but it sounds like a significant part of the money goes right to the artist. They print everything in-house with a super duper high tech full color digital printer.
Doug had also asked if people from BitcoinPHL would volunteer to be in a commercial for his company. He produces 2-3 short, humorous commercials each week and an idea for one that involves Bitcoin. We may try and coordinate it with the Philadelphia Brewing Company Brewery Tour to maximize turn-out. Details to follow.
Doug had also volunteered the Impact Hub as a place for us to hold some meetings. While I personally don't think that it would be the best spot for our weekly meetings, I definitely think it would be a great spot to do presentations or special events. I'm going to propose that we do a presentation to all the different companies on why Bitcoin rulz and why they should accept it.
Stay tuned! There's some exciting shit going down!
BitPay is now making it easy for employers to allow their employees to take home some of their pay in bitcoin!
I won't be depositing with them anytime soon. There are still a lot of kinks to be worked out and a reputation to be built. However it's nice to see the market begin to provide solutions to the very important issue of crypto-storage http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/goldmoney-group-adds-bitcoin-to-commodity-vault-9055414.html
Tonight Steven and I went to Higher Grounds Cafe, where I purchased my first-ever coffee with bitcoin. I got a large mocha latte, and I enjoyed it so much, I got a second one before leaving! This cafe has a great atmosphere and music selection, plus a wide variety of delicious food and hot drinks. The best part is you can pay for your order in bitcoins! I look forward to returning tomorrow to talk with the owners on video about their decision to accept bitcoin as payment.
It was a quick, easy, and overall pleasant experience ordering and paying with bitcoin! The cashier totaled my order and presented me with the cafe's bitcoin address in a QR code. I scanned the code with my phone and typed in the amount owed (plus a tip), and hit send! That's it! I highly recommend supporting this bitcoin-friendly business!
Couldn't make it? Here is an edited audio recording of tonight's conversation:
- Derrick J Freeman, Dec 17, 2013
Look at this awesome pamphlet designed by Davi Barker of Bitcoin Not Bombs. Share it with your friends! Print some and hand them out at your next trade show or speaking engagement! Leave some in the Dr's office waiting room, or maybe even your local bank's lobby...
- Derrick J Freeman, December 17, 2013
Here's an excerpt:
The guys at the meet-up were animated, ears cocked to learn. Can you get refunds in Bitcoin? Can you do escrow transactions? Where's a good place to go for information?
"There's a lot I don't know," Said Jason DiLuzio of Fishtown, "but there's someone here who will know, and maybe I'll know something they don't."
Wharton School students Kyle Powers and Chris Yim are vets of the Bitcoin world. "We have vendors, researchers, even a couple academics," Powers said. "It's a very open group," Yim said. "We're trying to get integratd into the local community."
Friday, Dec 7, 2013 - Today, for the third day in a row, the bitcoin price went down. This can feel unnatural for some because they are accustomed to the price always going up. Although the price of each bitcoin, and thus the dollar value of the entire network went down today, that does not mean that bitcoin is over.
Thursday, Dec. 5, 2013 - 20 people attended tonight's meetup, which took place at 30th St Station for the first time ever. It was an awesome location that no doubt played a part in the high turnout. It's easy to get to since it's a transportation hub, plus there's tons of flexible room for seating. It has the added benefit of seating and tables nearby restaurants, without the obligation of having to buy something. The biggest downside were the poor accoustics.
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Holiday Business Showcase
Check out the latest Philadelphia area businesses that are excepting Bitcoin for holiday shopping this year!
You can also use the new map feature on our home page for locating businesses that except bitcoin are in your area.
If you are a Business in our area and would like to be featured in our Holiday showcase, please contact us and we will be happy to help promote you business.
List of local Vendors and Businesses:
Rittenhouse Holiday Pop-up Shop
Featuring several Artist and vintage itemsOpen December 13-15 & 20-22 Store hours 1pm-8pm 268 S. 20th St. Phila PA 19103
Sum Pig Food Truck
Food Truck roaming the streets of Southeastern PA(215) 626-7668 firstname.lastname@example.org http://www.sumpigfoodtruck.com
Street Glitter Gallery
306 East Girard AvenePhiladelphia 19125 www.streetglittergallery.com
Luna Grey Interiors
GearForms: Industrial Americana & Salvage Co.
Located in Fishtown - By appointment onlyGFwerkshop@gmail.com www.GearForms.com www.GFwerkshop.com
Pirate Printing Co.
Some of you may have bought or sold on BitMit (EBAY for Bitcoin) or other crypto-auction sites.
I've been using www.cryptothrift.com the last few weeks. I am very happy with the functionality. The straight forward easy to use interface lets you have better control of your auctions than Bitmit. What I like most is that you can use several different payment options, they offer Escrow, and you can choose to be paid in whichever crypto-currency you wish to receive!
Try is out for this holiday shopping season!