It had me at bitcoin.
Not only am I solidly on the bandwagon — I’m hoping you jump aboard, too, where you’ll share a seat with the entire startup and tech journalism establishment. (the main exception being Felix Salmon, although his arguments don’t persuade me and I think he’s being contrarian to stake out some fresh journalistic ground)
Firstly: I am not a crypto-millionaire. I bought my first bitcoin a year ago, at a price higher than it stands today. I used and recommend Coinbase. If you sign up with this link, we both get $1 of bitcoin (note: not the same as 1 bitcoin).
Why do I care? It seems to be a genuine conceptual and technological breakthrough which might solve some of society’s most complex, entrenched problems — those that deal with money. Problems which usually help the rich at the expense of the poor. Problems which, I believe, are harder to solve from the inside than from the outside.
It’s ridiculous that a wire transfer to China takes a week and costs $25. It’s ridiculous that I can’t tip someone 10 cents for a good blog post or YouTube video. It’s ridiculous, at least in America, that I can’t quickly and cheaply send large amounts of money to acquaintances across banks. And it’s ridiculous when I’m checking out at a store and I have to use cash because there’s a $5 credit card minimum due to transaction fees. Like Naval says,
The Internet allows any two individuals to transfer data without permission from any central authority. Bitcoin does the same for value
So, in the name of experimental fun, my next 10 posts will be about bitcoin. I’ve covered it previously, in particular how bitcoin can be improved and Dan Kaminsky’s thoughts. But I want to start fresh. A lot has changed and we’re at day two.
Before I invested a healthy chunk of my (limited) liquid assets in the bitcoins, I spent 2 weeks reading and taking notes on everything I could understand, which, as a non-programmer, is at best 75% of what’s out there. I have 18 pages of those notes — more than enough for 10 posts :) And in the words of Virginia Woolf, “I write to find out what I know.”
This will be the index page, and I’ll update it with links to all posts. Here are some likely posts:
- Day 1: There’s plenty of room on the bandwagon! (this post)
- Day 2: How bitcoin works and fun facts
- Day 3: How bitcoin could fail
- Day 4: How bitcoin could fail, continued
- Day 5: Chicken Little and the falling sky
- Day 6: Being long bitcoin is being short big government and business
PS. To my 27 regular readers: I’m sorry if you’re not interested in bitcoin. If you don’t mind, I’d like to know why. Email or FB or tweet me. I also promise when the 10 posts are over, we’ll return to “random” programming
I’ve started using and really appreciate @ChangeTip. Here’s a way to send me some bits :)
Hi! I write about habits and spirituality and random whatevers. Click here to see the daily habits that I track. Find me on Twitter @kgao.