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Retirely in The things you own end up owning you,

Bitcoin, currently viewed as the currency of choice for online drug dealers and arms merchants, suffers another blow to its reputation as Wall Street bankers are beginning to eye it as a more efficient way to process transactions

Fredrik Voss is overseeing work at Nasdaq to use the technology behind Bitcoin to make trading faster and cheaper.

As a technology for transferring money, BitCoin is great. As a “currency”, it’s kinda terrible because of the volatility of the value of a bitcoin when compared to any benchmark. I don’t know if there’s one definitive answer. But there’s the volatility thing, there’s the fact that a large percentage of people seem to be holding BitCoin itself as an investment instead of spending it, there’s the MTGOX scandal that calls into question the security of BitCoin as a store of value. These are all negative events that can happen with real money too, but it just seems to happen a lot more with BitCoin for some reason. Maybe money needs the force of law behind it to be effective.

From TFA:

Until now, digital transactions have always gone through some sort of central authority that can move the money and update the records on both sides – as PayPal and Visa do for many online purchases.
The Bitcoin network, on the other hand, is run by a decentralized network of users who jointly keep track of transactions and update the records in real time, with no single user or company in charge. The records of all transactions are kept on a public ledger – essentially just a big, publicly available spreadsheet – known as the blockchain that is visible to anyone and has, at least so far, proven impossible to tamper with.

I suppose Wall Street’s interest would be that this potentially allows them to execute transactions faster, and if there’s no central exchange involved, there’s no transaction fee. That said I don’t know what’s actually going on in these transactions, so I don’t know what the actual costs and benefits are.

“There is so much pull and interest on this right now,” said Derek White, the chief digital officer at Barclays, the British global bank, which has a team of employees working on about 20 experiments that explore how the technology underlying Bitcoin might change finance. “That comes from a recognition that, ‘Wow, we can use this to change the fundamental model of how we operate to create our future.’”

“A year ago, it was more of an idea,” said Max Neukirchen, the head of corporate strategy at JPMorgan Chase. “Now, it is a real opportunity. You test it and realize that this can play a big role in our thinking about how our own infrastructure will evolve.”

“We believe that blockchain technology holds great promise in allowing capital markets to operate more efficiently while simultaneously providing greater transparency and security, all of which are fundamental to the public interest,” Nasdaq’s chief executive, Robert Greifeld, said in a July call with investors. “It’s hard to see a world where that blockchain technology doesn’t end up changing the way we think about asset ownership,” he said.

“Ok, well I’ll just transfer your cash into Bitcoins and the price just crashed and someone just stole the contents of your Bitcoin wallet aaand it’s gone.”