Bitcoin

ATM Makes Bitcoin Even Easier to Access

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Zack Harvey from New Hampshire has graced the world with its very first Bitcoin ATMBitcoin is the worlds first decentralized virtual currency. This currency has only been around for four years and has already gained a following among critics of central banking.

Bitcoin sign
Credit: Adam Crowe/ Foter

WordPress and Reddit accept Bitcoin to access their premium services. The Free State Project also accepts bitcoin payments for its summer programs. Retailers on the arts-and-crafts shopping site Etsy can also choose to accept Bitcoin.

An ATM for a virtual currency might seem to be at odds, except for the fact that the ATM isn't your typical machine. CNET describes the process:

To obtain Bitcoins, people use an iPhone app like Blockchain or Android's BitcoinSpinner to show the ATM a QR [Quick Response] code with their desired address for payments. After they insert a dollar bill (denominations up to $100 are accepted), the ATM automatically credits their Bitcoin account with the proceeds. There's a 1 percent transaction fee.

David Mcullagh reports that Harvey came up with the idea of a Bitcoin ATM when living in Tel Aviv and running an online guitar retailer, StompRomp.com, that accepted payments in the currency. He said accepting Bitcoin was more reliable and safer than dealing with charge-backs, credit card fraud, and "scam sales from certain Asian countries like Malaysia or Indonesia."

Because the currency is decentralized and incapable of being regulated (except by shutting down the internet), individuals are free to influence the system of payment as they deem fit. This has given rise not only to more Bitcoin wallet clients but also add-ons to the original software, compatible with most operating systems. The creativity hasn't stopped there; now users can confirm transfers on their mobile devices.

This makes the Bitcoin even more accessible for money or bank transfers, money wirings, and conversion into a currency untouched by any central authority.

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  1. So it’s really not an ATM at all since you can’t get cash. More like one of those gift card refill machines.

    1. Lets break down what ATM stands for
      Automated Teller Machine

      Wikipedia defines an ATM as:
      …computerized telecommunications device that enables the clients of a financial institution to perform financial transactions without the need for a cashier, human clerk or bank teller.

      Yep, everything checks out!

  2. The bitcoin world is full of people messing with its value and the majority of the currency does not seem to actually circulate. Decentralized currencies are a good thing, probably, but bitcoin is not a safe place to keep your money if you are thinking about it.

    There are a ton of sham transactions driven by a few individuals to make the currency appear more valuable than it is. Enron used to do the same thing in the California electricity markets in the late 90s.

    1. I don’t know how decentralized currency could ever work. Wouldn’t it be incredibly easy for whoever is issuing that currency to run some kind of scam? In the case of bitcoins, no one even knows the real name of the guy who invented them. That sounds incredibly sketchy.

      1. Decentralized currency can work, but decentralized fiat currency? I am not sold.

        1. Decentralized currency can work, but decentralized fiat currency? I am not sold.

          Neither am I.

      2. “I don’t know how decentralized currency could ever work. Wouldn’t it be incredibly easy for whoever is issuing that currency to run some kind of scam? In the case of bitcoins, no one even knows the real name of the guy who invented them.”

        Bitcoins aren’t “issued” they are mined electronically. I don’t know the name of the guy who invented the dollar either, and the value of the dollar is being manipulated all the time by the Feds. In fact most arguments against bitcoin are just as valid against the dollar.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bitcoin

        1. But isn’t the whole selling point of Bitcoin supposed to be that it’s not the dollar?

          Hello, McFly!!!

          1. “But isn’t the whole selling point of Bitcoin supposed to be that it’s not the dollar?”

            Yes. But that doesn’t mean they don’t share similar “faults”. The benefit of bitcoin not being the dollar is being able to send the amount of your own choice to anyone, in any place, anonymously.

          2. No, the whole selling point of bitcoin is it is a secure peer to peer cryptocurrency.

            It doesnt matter who the guy was who created it. He is not in control of it. Each node is responsible for ensuring that every other node is playing by the same rules they are.

    2. Doesn’t seem at all like a stable investment to me, for the reasons you mentioned.

      I mean maybe you could toss in some money you won’t miss to explore the possibilities.

      1. It’s not an investment. It’s currency. A medium of exchange.

        1. People invest in currencies. Just ask George Soros.

          1. Right. That is the problem with central banking. Investors are making money on arbitrage between foreign currencies. Bitcoin won’t be inflated/deflated on the whim of a central banker to attain a secondary goal (reduce unemployment, increase exports, etc.) so the value of the bitcoin will instead be determined by the goods and services they purchase. There are no secondary considerations.

            1. http://www.bitcoinmoney.com/po…..12-results

              Really? According to Bitcoin itself, the value of the bitcoin has been exploding. I don’t have recent numbers, but that link says that the bitcoin’s value increased 41% from June 2011-June 2012. There’s no reason if someone expects the value to further increase that they couldn’t buy some and try to sell high. That’s pretty much the definition of an investment, unless you don’t think stock is an investment.

              1. FTA:

                But Bitcoin does not and cannot exist solely to benefit those mining and though millions of dollars worth of trades are occurring on the exchanges each week, those trading volume levels are likely for the most part due primarily to speculation.
                Even if these trades were entirely for funds passing through the exchanges to facilitate commerce made using bitcoins, the actual transaction volumes seen on the Bitcoin payment network today are likely still too low to justify the current $62 million USD aggregate currency valuation for Bitcoin.

                OK. It looks like people are speculating and trading it as an investment. But even Bitcoin is projecting that as it gains more users, the price will become less volatile, and will settle into an equilibrium price (set by consumers based on the value of goods and services purchased with bitcoins). So early adapters could make some nice money right now. Because it’s going to be alot harder in the future to realize those gains.

              2. Bitcoin is up from ~ $13/Bitcoin 1/1/2013
                to ~ $31/Bitcoin today. It has seen huge growth as different businesses have began to accept it in the last few months, especially the online gambling industry to sidestep around USD currency laws.

    3. “The bitcoin world is full of people messing with its value”

      oh really?

      1. the value of the bitcoin is determined by how many people want to buy them at a specific price versus how many people want to sell them at a specific price.

        so yeah, I guess those people are messing with it all the time!

    4. “There are a ton of sham transactions driven by a few individuals to make the currency appear more valuable than it is.”

      “And…it’s gone.”

      1. Man, you know, that reminds me, I haven’t had a margarita in a really long time……

        Damn, no tequila.

  3. Really isn’t this just bartering? If inflation ever hits, people will do what they have always done during times of inflation, trade in goods instead of cash. Thanks to the internet, that will be much easier than it was.

    1. Sure, even forum invites could possibly work as money. The most important thing is that the money should have some bearing to scarcity.

  4. Also, Bitcoin makes the libertarian miracle of Silk Road possible. Suck it, narcs!

    1. Very interesting. Too bad the comments got trolled by some guy claiming drugs lead to violence. I was hoping to hear from someone who had actually used the site.

      1. Other than that guy, they were probably the most reasonable comments I’ve ever seen on Gawker. The guy who bought LSD even referred to himself as a libertarian, and the Gawker comments actually let that slide without going on a KOCHTOPUS rampage.

      2. I have had experience with SR. It is surprisingly secure. I also posit it takes almost all violence out of the trade. Anonymous transactions directly between supplier and consumer.

  5. “This currency has only been around for four years and has already gained a following among critics of central banking.”

    If Bitcoin isn’t a central bank, it will be soon enough. What will cure all our financial woes?

    Top. Currency.

    1. If Bitcoin isn’t a central bank, it will be soon enough.

      I’m not sure if you understand Bitcoin. Can you please explain what you mean?

      1. technically speaking someone could “control” bitcoin if they were to build a supercomputer that commanded 51% of the processing power of the entire bitcoin network; but plenty of people have debated ways to prevent that

        1. Possible, but *highly* unlikely. As the number of Bitcoin users increases the possibility of this happening approaches zero. Not something I would worry about. I don’t think even an entity as big as the Federal Gov has the processing power to match all other bitcoin users.

  6. Bitcoin is:

    1.) a currency
    2.) a distributed and verifiable public ledger
    3.) a peer-to-peer payment processing network
    4.) a triple-entry accounting system
    5.) a store of wealth
    6.) a cryptosignature creation and verification device
    7.) a personal offshore bank account
    8.) a distributed timestamp server

  7. Bitcoin adoption is increasing and reaching new businesses every day. This machine will bring this cryptocurrency to those in the streets faster. The more people who get into this virtual currency, the better! For those who haven’t joined the revolution yet, check out http://thebitcoinmaster.blogspot.com and get started!

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