- Dec 14, 2017 at 3:53 am #3507418
Recently I read a book on Bitcoin, to figure out what it is all about.
I now know less than I did before.
A couple of amusing facts were about the guy that was paid in Bitcoins for two beers (right at the start when the value was around $0.05 USD) A few years later he bought an apartment in Stockholm with those Bitcoins.
Another early adopter had the wallet and keys (codes) on his Hard Drive .
He forgot about that when a few years later he dumped the, by then, faulty drive.
Those Bitcoins would be worth now millions..
(he did search the dump when he realised his mistake but it was far too late )
Apparently the Bitcoin founder “mined” one million Bitcoins for himself.
Now, let me see : 1 million at $16425 (today) is…. a lot of money.
Or maybe nothing.Dec 14, 2017 at 5:13 am #3507423
jeffrey armbrusterBPL Member
@bookLocale: Northern California
I don’t really understand it either. But bitcoins have the whiff of a ponzi scheme combined with the high tech bubbles of some years ago. I wouldn’t go near them.Dec 14, 2017 at 3:07 pm #3507449
Tulip mania – a lot of similar stories – “Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds”
Don’t forget that Mt Gox was broken into and $450 million was stolen
I think I trust a government to back up money more than anonymous programmers ability to write bug free code. And the fact that it’s anonymous means criminals can use it without risk of getting caught.
Maybe it will provide enough competition to credit card companies to make their service cheaper and easier.Dec 19, 2017 at 7:07 am #3508287
It’s not quite as easy as all that, and it’s actually pretty fascinating.
For those really interested, just from a ‘hey, that’s interesting!’ perspective, Ars has two pretty good articles on it.Dec 19, 2017 at 1:16 pm #3508296
Our neighbors have quite an operation going to mine Bitcoin. From what they’ve told me, they paid cash for a new car with it and I hear (rumor) it paid off their house.
Their utility bill (including electricity, water, garbage, etc) is now about $600 per month. Ours is closer to $180, $300 when we have to run the AC.Dec 19, 2017 at 2:01 pm #3508300
“they paid cash for a new car with it and I hear (rumor) it paid off their house.”
Typical rumor connected to a speculative bubble
“Their utility bill (including electricity, water, garbage, etc) is now about $600 per month. ”
I read that at some point, the mining of bitcoin will require as much electricity as the current world supplyDec 19, 2017 at 7:55 pm #3508354
I don’t doubt your neighbors, if they’ve been mining for awhile, could have made ‘serious’ cash, but without more serious investment, I doubt your neighbors will be successfully mining for long, if they still are. Serious computing power is where it’s at, more than would fit in a basement, and use a lot more electricity than a few hundred dollars a month. Mining operations are huge now.
A video of one such mining operation in China.Dec 19, 2017 at 10:47 pm #3508378
I won’t speculate on what their bottom line is but their garage is mostly repurposed for their bit coin operation. It’s large enough that they have to worry about the temperature in the garage and their computers overheating.
They’ve been doing it for a while. They didn’t tell me that they paid off the house with it so that’s hearsay, but I do know they paid cash for their SUV with bit coin revenue and she was able to quit her job,
When they first told me about bit coin, I though it was some weird gimmick and that the government would shut it down, but they’ve proved me wrong.Dec 19, 2017 at 10:53 pm #3508379
W I S N E R !BPL Member
It’s amazing to me how much money in this world gets made through manipulation schemes that generate little to nothing in the way of tangible goods or services for society. Throw in automated trading and things get really bizarre.Dec 19, 2017 at 11:58 pm #3508395
“I won’t speculate on what their bottom line is but their garage is mostly repurposed for their bit coin operation. It’s large enough that they have to worry about the temperature in the garage and their computers overheating.”
Sounds like they have invested quite nicely in mining. Consider this, currently you get 12.5 bitcoins for every block you add to the blockchain. A new block is created roughly every 10 minutes. At the moment, a bitcoin is worth about $18,000 dollars….Dec 20, 2017 at 1:20 am #3508405
I am convinced now that it is just a fancy/high tech Ponzi scheme.
There is no real value, that I can see, behind it but only the belief that there is .
Once enough people stop believing, it will collapse.Dec 20, 2017 at 1:30 am #3508407
“There is no real value, that I can see, behind it but only the belief that there is.”
I think that the less someone knows about bitcoin and other digital currency, the more likely they are to have the same opinion. Without a doubt it’s value fluctuates (sometimes wildly), but there is real money behind it. It wasn’t created as an investment, really, but as a means of transferring money quickly, easily and cheaply without needing government ‘approval.’ Like anything else, it’s prone to fraud, theft, crazy speculation – just like paper currency. But I don’t think digital currency will be going anywhere any time soon. In fact, I think within, perhaps, a decade, it will be mainstream. That doesn’t mean it’s going to replace government-backed paper currency, but I believe it will exist along side it.Dec 20, 2017 at 2:37 am #3508426
In countries with hyper inflation, maybe far less than 10 yearsDec 20, 2017 at 4:04 am #3508437
There are some good ideas like having a block chain – multiple computers contain all the information about who owns the money so that many computers can fail but the system will continue. And crypto currency where you have a public key and a private key, the same idea as https, so the public can know about the money but only you can spend it.
A reason for bitcoin would be low transaction costs, but I think it costs many percent. Credit cards charge 1.5%? It ought to be a lot less because computers are cheap when divided by the number of transactions.
I don’t get the irrational fear about having to trust a government to protect your money. At least we can vote them out, as opposed to an anonymous bitcoin management. There have been cases where large amounts of bitcoin have been stolen like the Mount Gox case. I trust the U.S. government more, even though they are pretty screwy in a of of ways.
I can see not wanting the government to see your transactions if you’re doing something illegal. Like not pay your taxes.Dec 20, 2017 at 2:19 pm #3508492
oh oh, I just got emailed a “Bitcoin investment guide”
I just deleted it though, didn’t open the link, maybe that’s what “mining for bitcoin” is, sending people emails about bitcoin with a link to install a virus : )Dec 21, 2017 at 10:23 pm #3508710
I might know very little about Bitcoin but somehow I think that from a few thousands worth 5c each in 2009 to the more than 16 million now , currently worth $15700.00 each, there is something not quite right there.Dec 22, 2017 at 1:23 am #3508744
“from a few thousands worth 5c each in 2009 to the more than 16 million now , currently worth $15700.00 each, there is something not quite right there.”
Oh I agree, I think it’s another tulip frenzy. As one writer said, we’re approaching the time when you start getting bitcoin tips from your cab driver, which means things are ready to fall, and probably fall quite steeply. I just don’t think it’s going away, even when it comes back ‘down to earth.’Dec 22, 2017 at 2:38 am #3508752
I remember that one. Must have been from a previous life ….
Maybe that is the reason my brain clogs up.Dec 22, 2017 at 5:01 pm #3508805
as of this minute, Bitcoin have dropped 40% of their value
but, they’ve had similar drops before in recent years and recoveredDec 22, 2017 at 11:50 pm #3508876
I did some surfing to read up on this and watched a few videos. A common theme was that the same person selling bitcoin looked like they were going to transition into their flat earth manifesto immediately after the sales pitch.
From watching it today on Coinbase, Bitcoin dropped from $15,970 to $11,069 and is currently sitting at $14,053. Like commodities, I wouldn’t spend more than 10% of funds available for investing into cryptocurrency (if any at all) but I’m going to throw a $100 into it just to play around with it and see how everything plays out with the fees. If I double my money (including fees), I’ll cash out my original “investment” and use whatever is in my wallet to explore it further. If I lose it all, I figure I’ve put far less than $100 into one armed bandits in my life so this will be my “sucker born every minute” tax.
If I strike it rich, first class seats to Puntas Arenas sounds fine by me.
I think it’s safe to look at this as a gambling opportunity and not an investment per se, but who knows.
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