Emerging Tech

Bitcoin Is Now a Billion Dollar Industry

Flickr user zcopley

A tremendous thing happened in the weird world of bitcoin on Thursday. For the first time in the currency's history, the total value of all bitcoins in circulation topped $1 billion.

That's right: A billion bucks, right out of thin air. That's oversimplifying things a bit, but we'll get back to that. (By the way, if you still don't understand how bitcoin works, read this.) For now, let your jaw drop — watch the drool — and start wishing you'd bought a bunch of the cybercurrency way back when the exchange rate was less than $5, because on Thursday it zoomed past $95 per bitcoin. 

In a way, this is just a microcosm of our financial system as a whole. Haters love to point out how bitcoin just appeared out of thin air on January 3, 2009. It was a pet project of Japanese mathematician Satoshi Nakamoto. Or rather, bitcoin was created by some talented coder slash economist slash enigma using what's probably a made up name. Nakamoto had an axe to grind, too. The basic idea was to create a currency that exists independent of any state government. 

Read the rest at TheAtlanticWire.com.

Threatwatch Alert

User accounts compromised

False Air Force One Crash Reported on Hijacked WSJ Facebook Page

See threatwatch report

JOIN THE DISCUSSION

Close [ x ] More from Nextgov
// 6:03 PM ET