I have been playing around with Bitcoin, the mathematically very cool digital currency. It occurred to me that it is the “local currency” of the Internet. There are local currencies like Ithaca Hours or Bernal Bucks that facilitate trading within a community.
Bitcoins are kind of like that. It is for those of the Internet. I found getting it going was an adventure which ended in my figuring out how to donate to the Internet Archive, which was fun. People have donated over $5000 worth of bitcoins in the last 2 years to the Internet Archive.
I was able to buy a physical bitcoin, which makes a good souvenir. I was interviewed for an upcoming article in Bitcoin Magazine. And been giving out 10 bitcoin cents to friends that I can find their bitcoin address. I can not sure when I have to stop this gesture, but it seems to be encouraging some to set up bitcoin-qt on their computers.
Rick Wesson had an idea to use the DNS to publish your bitcoin addresses for those that want to send you money. If you take your email address, replace the @ with a . to make it a hostname, then put it in the txt record (takes some knowledge of dns).
brewster$ dig rick.wesson.us txt ... ;; ANSWER SECTION: rick.wesson.us. 300 IN TXT "BTC=1\; 1GCVXLfF1TcpnnDLJRHk845NZhuJWQTnUD"
Jim Shankland, at the Archive, nicely set me up so I could be a cool kid too, so if you want to send me bitcoins you can find my bitcoin address with the dig command as well:
brewster$ dig brewster.archive.org txt ;; ANSWER SECTION: brewster.archive.org. 1800 IN TXT "BTC=1\; 1MHViGVu72KWj7dMsqcypGVih385YoQzUb"
I feel like I am part of a club, and it is fun. I hope to find more things I can do to play with this promising system.
My address: 1MHViGVu72KWj7dMsqcypGVih385YoQzUb