Tagalternative currency

Cyberpunk Builds Bitcoin Wallet That Even Apple Can’t Ban

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From my latest “Out in the Open” column for Wired:

Kyle Drake calls himself a professional cyberpunk. He spends his days on the net, writing computer code and trying to stick it to the man. His latest target: the global banking industry.

But he’s not aiming to take down the financial sector with some sort of illegal hack attack. He wants to beat them at their own game with a little help from the world’s most popular digital currency, Bitcoin — a burgeoning system that runs on thousands of servers across the globe without answering to any central authority. “I think Bitcoin is the most important thing I’m going to work on in my life,” Drake says.

His current project is Coinpunk, an open source Bitcoin wallet that he believes will help free the world from both big banks and powerful payment processors like MasterCard and Visa.

Full Story: Wired: Out in the Open: Cyberpunk Builds Bitcoin Wallet That Even Apple Can’t Ban

And in other Bitcoin news Bitcoins in Space: Hacker to Fire Digital Currency Into Orbit. The plan is to use a nanosat to run a Bitcoin server in space:

The notion may seen excessive, but for Garzik — a self-confessed space fan whose dad helped build missiles at the White Sands Missile Range — it has always been an obvious next step for the digital currency. “When Bitcoin came around, it seemed natural to me that you’d want some sort of redundancy out in space,” he says, explaining that this could not only help the peer-to-peer network fend off attack, but give it a lifeline if machines are unavailable on earth.

Garzik, like many Bitcoiners, is an idealist. “If you’re out in a field in Africa or if you’re a researcher in Antarctica, you should be able to have just as much access to Bitcoin as someone in the better-wired portion of the world,” he says.

Photo by Aaron Parecki / CC

Has a New Yorker Reporter Found Bitcoin Creator Satoshi Nakamoto?

Bitcoin Batman

Bitcoin has its own version of Batman and a New Yorker reporter has gone out hunting for the cryptocurrency’s Bruce Wayne.

It’s been three years since the inception and introduction of Bitcoin to the world and while it started out extremely fringe and invisible to the general public, lately the cryptographic currency has managed to make quite a splash. The system involves a complex mathematical theory that allows users to slowly coin their own money, essentially limiting the volume of currency and making it something of a commodity. Of course, now that Bitcoin has appeal generated from sites such as Slashdot the creator should be basking in the limelight of his or her invention—but here lies the mystery: Satoshi Nakamoto, the inventor of Bitcoin, happens to be a reclusive enigma.

SiliconAngle: Has a New Yorker Reporter Found Bitcoin Creator Satoshi Nakamoto?

Chinese Prisons Forcing Inmates to “Gold Farm” in Online Games

Gold farming

As a prisoner at the Jixi labour camp, Liu Dali would slog through tough days breaking rocks and digging trenches in the open cast coalmines of north-east China. By night, he would slay demons, battle goblins and cast spells.

Liu says he was one of scores of prisoners forced to play online games to build up credits that prison guards would then trade for real money. The 54-year-old, a former prison guard who was jailed for three years in 2004 for “illegally petitioning” the central government about corruption in his hometown, reckons the operation was even more lucrative than the physical labour that prisoners were also forced to do.

The Guardian: China used prisoners in lucrative internet gaming work

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