Bitcoin - a decentralised digital currency

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We could be testing $80 by tomorrow.

 

There's only half a mil to $85. If YL6 reaches deep we can get there before the pub opens.

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When Bitcoin rates are quoted on BBC and WSJ that's when we'll know Bitcoin has gone mainstream.

 

And when the forums / mainstream press get all in a lather about it as with the price of gold a while back, you'll know a peak has been reached.

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isnt bitcoin sort of for people who dont like the existing system? But in fact you all seem to be willing some sort of bubble in it in just the same way as the bankers did with all their dodgy financial instruments??

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And when the forums / mainstream press get all in a lather about it as with the price of gold a while back, you'll know a peak has been reached.

 

As with the old saying: when your taxi driver and plumber are talking about buying shares, it's time to sell.

 

Re the wallet, if you don't keep your wallet at the exchange that you use, don't you have to transfer your wallet from your pc or online store to the exchange before you can sell again? If so, how long does it take.. could be a delaying factor.

 

So far Ive kept mine at the exchange.

 

EDIT: just been looking at bitcoin-24.com, I can't see any way how you can transfer the wallet.

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you all seem to be willing some sort of bubble in it in just the same way as the bankers did with all their dodgy financial instruments

 

We're the new banksters :ph34r:

 

EDIT: this thing is actually extremely speculative, as I understand it there is no underlying value to the currency at all, ie not only no central bank or government, and not even a physical commodity

 

eg with the gold price you at least have the gold itself which has industrial uses.

 

so too with commodities such as oil, coffee, sugar etc.

 

but with bitcoin there's nothing. You are trading on sentiment, nothing else.

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I'm with Bitcoin-24 and am also curious why the rates there are so much higher, but the buy-sell spread (in dollar prices only) is high too, about $5 at the moment ($85/$80)- presumably as they have to exchange via Euros at market rates..

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Arent these the best rates for sell and buy at any moment?

 

doesn't mean deals actually have to go through at those rates. There are also some completely looney prices being sought on bitcoin24, eg $1000 for one bitcoin, and even higher.

 

EDIT: think I misread the data

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I think it may be down to trading volumes on bitcoin24 being smaller than on Mt Gox. Also maybe bitcoin24 is more european traders? might have something to do with it.

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How to buy bitcoin quickly

 

If you have an account at a mainstream German bank then it's possible to buy bitcoins in under five minutes. Here's how:

 

 

  • Open an account at bitcoin-24.com, choose a strong password and write it down so you don't forget.
  • Go to the "Settings" page and enter your mobile phone number for SMS withdrawals. This isn't essential but it gives you extra security.
  • Go to the "Deposit" page, decide how many Euro you want to put in, and make a deposit via Giropay. This goes through instantly.
  • Go to the "Market" page and start placing your bids. "Buy instantly" is quicker but placing buy orders gets you a better rate.

 

That's it. You now have bitcoin.

 

You could also use another exchange, such as bitcoin-central.net which is based in France, or mtgox.com which is based in the US, or one of the many other exchanges. bitcoin-24 is probably the quickest and easiest for German residents through. It's run by a young German guy called Simon Hausdorf.

 

You could also pay via SEPA instead of Giropay. SEPA is cheaper but it takes one clear business day to go through, sometimes 36 hours.

 

Once you've bought bitcoins you should, for security, move your them off the exchange and into a wallet on your PC. No great hurry to do this. Leaving them on the exchange for a few days is OK, provided your password is strong. But if you bought a large number of coins then you really should move them offline at some point. For that you need a client. The so-called "reference client" is Bitcoin-Qt. Within that client you create a bitcoin receiving address. Then go back to bitcoin-24, click "Withdraw", and enter your receiving address. The bitcoins will arrive on your PC within 10 minutes. After that, depending on how much bitcoin you bought, you probably also want to make backups of your wallet.dat file to a USB stick. Google for details on this.

 

You can also dump out your receiving address's private key and print that off on a piece of paper. Again, use Google for further details. The 51-character private key is the critical thing. That is your bitcoin. Look after it and never share it with anyone. You can crash your computer, forget your passwords, and lose your files. But so long as you know your private key (or keys) then your bitcoins are safe.

 

Short-term predictions

 

There is likely to be a surge in price around 4pm this afternoon (Tuesday, March 26, 2013). This is the time that California wakes up. And because it's a Tuesday many of the bank transfers that were made to exchanges over the weekend will now be arriving. Wednesday and Thursday might also see rallies, but not quite as steep. Then over the four-day Easter weekend things will probably settle down, may even drop a little. On Wednesday, 3rd April, things will probably kick into high gear again with a fairly unbroken rally through to well above $100 by the end of April. That's my guess at the most likely scenario. Of course I could be completely wrong and something bad could happen and prices will plummet.

 

Fundamentals and long-term predictions

 

It's important to understand what bitcoin is, and why there's such excitement at the moment. It's most definitely not hype about nothing. People like to use the word "bubble", but that's really not what we're seeing here. Bitcoin has very strong and fundamental reasons for being a compelling technology. A few of these reasons are:

 

 

  • It enables anyone, anywhere in the world, to make a payment to anyone else at any time. All that's required is an internet connection.
  • The system works 24/7. It is not subject to office hours, weekends, or holidays like the regular banking system.
  • Transaction speeds are very fast. They are tentatively confirmed after 10 minutes, and fully confirmed after an hour.
  • Transaction fees are extremely low. In fact, transaction fees can be zero if you're happy to wait a few hours for the transaction to go through. Only the fast 10-minute transactions require a fee, and even then the fee is a trivial amount of just a few cents regardless of the amount being transfered.
  • The system is free from government or corporate interference. No government or corporation can freeze your account or give your savings a haircut.

 

Bitcoin is not a get-rich scheme but a fundamentally new technology and a new type of money. So usual investment rules don't necessarily apply.

 

The fact that prices are rapidly rising at the moment is just the icing on the cake. This has to happen initially so that it builds market share, spreads awareness, and gets more people adopting it. Once a large percentage of the world's population is using bitcoin then the prices will stabilise. If bitcoin does prove successful in its mission, then prices are expected to be around $100,000 per bitcoin. There could, however, also be a major technical failure and prices drop to zero. This is uncharted territory. I do genuinely believe, however, that right now we're standing on the threshold of a paradigm change in global finance, economics, and politics.

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I don't quite get this:

 

 

Bitcoin has very strong and fundamental reasons for being a compelling technology. A few of these reasons are:

 

  • It enables anyone, anywhere in the world, to make a payment to anyone else at any time. All that's required is an internet connection.
  • The system works 24/7. It is not subject to office hours, weekends, or holidays like the regular banking system.
  • Transaction speeds are very fast. They are tentatively confirmed after 10 minutes, and fully confirmed after an hour.
  • Transaction fees are extremely low. In fact, transaction fees can be zero if you're happy to wait a few hours for the transaction to go through. Only the fast 10-minute transactions require a fee, and even then the fee is a trivial amount of just a few cents regardless of the amount being transfered.
  • The system is free from government or corporate interference. No government or corporation can freeze your account or give your savings a haircut.

 

There are a zillion ways to pay on the internet including legacy measures such as credit card and PayPal, which cover at least the first three points any maybe even the remaining two. I don't see Bitcoin giving me any advantages in Internet trading at all, except maybe transaction fees, but I've not experienced them yet, as I've not found anywhere that I buy actually accepting the currency.

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PayPal is banned in many countries.

 

Even in countries where it's not banned the governments still forcibly freeze individual PayPal accounts on a routine basis.

 

Bitcoin is unbannable. Bitcoin is to money what BitTorrent is to music and video.

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Another good thing about bitcoin is that all the luddites, naysayers, and skeptical stammtisch people are going to miss the boat.

 

It's one thing to have said in 2007 that Facebook would never catch on, like Hutcho did. Whether Facebook had caught on or not, who cares. You can always join later. Or not. Doesn't matter.

 

If you believe bitcoin will never catch on, however, and then it does, well, you'll be facing an epic fail in life.

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Bitcoin is to money what BitTorrent is to music and video.

 

You mean I can shortly expect a letter from a lawyer alleging copyright infringement?

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Transaction speeds are very fast. They are tentatively confirmed after 10 minutes, and fully confirmed after an hour.

 

Whereas transaction speeds at the old snail banks are very slow.

 

Im still waiting for Deutsche Bank to get their finger out.

 

Funny how it takes them so long to do a SEPA, yet their own dealing rooms that speculate in currencies can move money around in seconds.

 

Brilliant post Bob by the way.

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There is likely to be a surge in price around 4pm this afternoon... Of course I could be completely wrong and something bad could happen and prices will plummet.

 

Translation: I like to sound like I know what I'm talking about, but I haven't a clue.

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