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Friday, June 8, 2018

New Way to use your Bitcoin: Buy Fine Art

If you have some spare Bitcoin or Ethereum lying around and you are tired of Hodling you could pick up some nice pieces of art by Andy Warhol.

On June 20 in London Dadiani Syndicate and in partnership with blockchain platform Maecenas Fine Art will be hosting an auction of this famous artist's work.

READ THE ENTIRE ARTICLE FROM FORBES

Maecenas Fine Art is doing some very interesting things in the Blockchain space. Read more from Marcela Garcia Casil HERE explaining how A-R-T and the Blockchain world work together.

This use of Bitcoin and the Blockchain is definitely going to impact the art world and I kind of think Andy Warhol would have loved it - or he would have hated it - one or the other. Either way he would have created some wild art based on this technology.





Saturday, May 26, 2018

Why so many cryptocurrencies?

If you are new to the world of cryptocurrency you have most likely heard about Bitcoin but that is only the beginning of the conversation. This list of cryptocurrencies is growing. But why? How many cryptocurrencies do we need?

It is a fascinating time to be watching the development of cryptocurrencies because there is so much development happening right now.

Here are a couple good resources to find out about all these coins:

WorldCoinIndex.com ranks all of the cryptocurrencies (at the time of this post there were 1810 ranked). The great thing about this site is the navigation. It is easy to click on any individual coin for more information including links to each individual website for more information. So if I am looking for information on any particular coin I start here.

TheMerkle.com put together a list of Top 50 Cryptocurrencies with just one sentence descriptions of each one. It is an interesting list and a fun way to look at these various coins.

Twitter is a good resource to go to for information on any coin by just using the Twitter search feature. If you aren't sure where to start you can always search #bitcoin or #cryptocurrency and go down the rabbit hole from there.

 But why so many coins?

The answer is almost simple. Each coin represents something different. Bitcoin is of course the grandaddy of all cryptocurrencies and where this all started. (Following the emergence of Bitcoin is how this site got started.) From there other cryptocurrencies were developed each with their unique twist on the theme of digital currency.



BLOCKCHAIN

The backbone of Bitcoin cryptocurrency is called Blockchain.

The technology that made Bitcoin possible also makes it possible for us to exchange all kinds of information in a way that has never been possible before. It is a longer discussion about what Blockchain is and why it is so important but the important factor to this conversation is that it has allowed for a breakthrough in innovation and solutions to problems we have been trying to solve for decades. 

How do we have accurate voting processes? BLOCKCHAIN
How do we have secure medical records that are owned by the patient / not the healthcare facility / and can be accessible when we need them? BLOCKCHAIN
How do we secure our electrical grid making it safe from hacking while also opening up opportunities for individuals to participate in energy conservation projects? BLOCKCHAIN
How do we ensure accurate ownership / title of land to people around the world? BLOCKCHAIN
How do we ensure that the food we are purchasing is actually organic and locally sourced? BLOCKCHAIN
How do we improve gun safety without adding more ineffective gun laws? BLOCKCHAIN

There are a so many activities that can be tracked and managed via Blockchain technology. Right now all around the world there are amazing teams of people coming up with solutions to problems that have been out of reach in the past in part because the cost and logistics were too impractical.

Each one of these new solutions or platforms has a Token that is used to exchange value and verify the information being tracked.

We have to think of "Coins" in a new way. Many of the "coins" on the world coin index are actually "Tokens". These Tokens represent some transaction of value but may not have anything to do with money.

There is a difference between cryptocurrency and these Blockchain Tokens / Coins. Throughout the next few months we will break these down one by one as we feature some of the most interesting Tokens and Blockchain solutions.

In the meantime, we will continue to support the use of Bitcoin as a currency to be used in our local shops.

We would love to hear your questions about Bitcoin / Blockchain / Tokens / Cryptocurrency  / ETC. Join the conversation over on Facebook.com/BackyardBitcoin.

Sunday, January 21, 2018

Back to the Basics: Where can I spend my Bitcoin

In the beginning there was Bitcoin. And then came the question: Where can I spend my Bitcoin? The first answer to this question came in the answer of a pizza. It was a little bit of a round about purchase as someone in England accepted the bitcoin from someone in Florida USA and then ordered a pizza for them using regular cash.

We have come a long way since then. But as one person online noted the various places that offer items for sale using Bitcoin still list the items for sale in US dollars. They argue that Bitcoin will never be a valid form of currency until items for sale are listed in absolute Bitcoin value instead of absolute US dollars with the option to use Bitcoin.

Here at Backyard Bitcoin we are happy to have items listed in US dollars with the option to use Bitcoin as the means to finalize a purchase. That works just fine for us.

So in the meantime here is an article from Lifewire.com listing 13 places to use your Bitcoin for purchases. We can confirm four of them.

LIFEWIRE 13 Major Retailers and Services that Accept Bitcoin

One that was not mentioned on this list that we have found interesting is Craigslist. In a recent search for cars on the popular Craigslist site there was an option in the filters list to search by those sellers that accept cryptocurrency. We have not tested this out but find it to be an exciting development.

Where are you spending your Bitcoin? Let us know

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Time Flies!

Apparently, we took a little break from blogging here. And there is really too much to catch up on since our last post and today. So, we will start right now at the beginning of 2018.

If there ever was a wild way to start out the year Bitcoin enthusiasts felt it. In September of 2017 those of us who were in the Bitcoin enthusiast column discussed the year end price of Bitcoin reaching even as high as $5000. The TV show "The Big Bang Theory" set the "ridiculous" price of Bitcoin at $5000 for their episode on Bitcoin. And then we watched it rise to almost $20,000. Admittedly, here at BYB we didn't see that coming. Our projections for the new year were in the 5000 - 10,000 USD range. So when the big slide happened this last week we really weren't rattled. Just a bit more like "Hmm that's an interesting development".

It had to be a rough couple of weeks for people who had just mortgaged their homes to buy in to this technology when the prices were up in the high teens.

It definitely illustrated one thing to us here. It is always better to be in a situation where you don't have to sell in a panic. Be in Bitcoin for the excitement, for the potential gains, for the fact that you are part of a new technology that has the potential to change the world for the better. But don't be in it for the babes and the private jets.

There is an old saying in the stock market that goes "Bulls make money - Bears make money - Pigs get slaughtered."  Don't be a Bitcoin Pig.

Many people have been speculating on the reasons for the incredible swings in the price of Bitcoin. We'll leave those conversations for the Reddit boards. Even with those swings we are enthusiastic about Bitcoin / Cryptocurrency / Blockchain and all that those technologies will bring in 2018.

Join us on Twitter and Facebook for great conversations and various polls and more fun to come.



Saturday, March 11, 2017

Bitcoin plummets after SEC announcement (just kidding)

At Backyard Bitcoin our main focus is all about using bitcoin and cryptocurrency in everyday life. We believe that the wider the adoption of bitcoin the stronger it will become. Bottom line: We love Bitcoin.


So, even though this was a little bit out of our backyard we still watched the news and the buzz last week that swirled around the SEC decision on whether they were going to approve the Winklevoss proposal for a new Bitcoin ETF.

For any of you that weren't watching here is the spoiler: The ETF was not approved.

Leading up to the announcement it looked as though speculators were buying up bitcoin in the hopes that if the ETF was approved then the price of bitcoin would go up even more. At one point in the week the price hit $1300 (US Dollars).

We watched from here with our Google alerts set on stun and our Twitter account following various hashtags to see who might announce the news first.

As the excitement grew we even posted short updates on Facebook. One thing I was reminded of right away was that, when you get into a specialized subject like cryptocurrency, it is easy to slip in to "jargon". A number of people responded to our posts about the ETF watch with comments like "Huh?" and "What?".  Backyard Bitcoin is designed to bridge the gap between the nerd and the newcomer and so at first I thought these comments might be in response to the word Bitcoin but then I realized that the term ETF was entirely foreign to a number of our readers.

An exchange-traded fund (ETF) is an investment fund traded on stock exchanges, much like stocks. An ETF holds assets such as stocks, commodities, or bonds, and trades close to its net asset value over the course of the trading day. Most ETFs track an index, such as a stock index or bond index. (That is the wiki definition of an ETF. If you are unfamiliar with what an ETF is this definition may not help all that much. If you want to know more about bitcoin and money see our reading recommendations at the bottom of this post).


The SEC (or US Securities and Exchange Commission) was tasked with approving a Bitcoin ETF put forward by the Winklevoss brothers (made famous in part because of the movie "the Social Network" which was based on the story of how Facebook came to be).  This process would mean that Bitcoin would gain a definition by the US government of whether it is currency, commodity, or what. What exactly is bitcoin? 


At the end of the day the announcement came out that the ETF was not going to go through and the price of bitcoin responded by dropping to just under $1100. This was a big drop for sure but not monumental considering that the price of bitcoin just last year started out around $400 and has been rising fairly consistently over the entire year.

The headlines that followed were harsh:


US regulators reject Bitcoin ETF, digital currency plunges


Bitcoin crashes after SEC reject Winklevoss ETF


Bitcoin: Price in Jeopardy after SEC Bitcoin ETF decision


You would have thought that it was the end of Bitcoin on Friday. But no. This is the great thing about Bitcoin. It is decentralized and not as susceptible to these market whims. Since the "crash" of bitcoin the price has begun to climb again and is currently at $1182.

It was an exciting week for Bitcoin / bitcoin. Here at Backyard Bitcoin we are even more excited about the weeks and months ahead.


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If you use your bitcoin for an everyday purchase let us know about your experience by joining the discussion on Facebook.com/backyardbitcoin 



If you want to know more about what bitcoin is exactly or just more on our monetary system in general here are our two reading recommendations (will post a separate review on each book in the weeks ahead but for now, pick them up and enjoy!)

The Internet of Money Volume 1 by Andreas M Antonopoulos 






Naked Money by Charles Wheelan