Happy Holidays Bitwagers,
As 2014 draws to close, the Bitcoin eco-system is abuzz with activity. As you finish opening the last of your Christmas (or Hanukkah) presents and begin to start thinking about your New Years resolution that you promise yourself you’re actually going to keep this year, we are busy gearing up for some exciting projects. The first project of which is the Miami Conference on January 16th through 18th where we will be speaking and we want you to come with us.
Bitwage Offering Free Miami Bitcoin Conference Tickets to Customers signed up for Bitcoin Payroll (BP(e) or BP(i)):
We will be giving out 15 tickets to the Miami Bitcoin Conference, 5 General Admission tickets and 10 Saturday tickets, to 15 of our lucky customers. Everyone who is signed up to Bitcoin Payroll for the Employer (BP(e)) or Bitcoin Payroll for the Individual (BP(i)) by January 5th will have a chance to win free tickets to the Miami Bitcoin Conference.
The conference hosts distinguished speakers from the Bitcoin Community, such as Bitcoin Core Developer, Jeff Garzik, Blockchain.info CEO, Nicolas Cary, Gyft CEO, Vinny Lingham, “Bitcoin Jesus”, Roger Ver, Ethereum Founder, Vitalik Buterin, Changetip CEO, Nick Sullivan, and much more.
To sign up, just create an account at https://www.bitwage.com and apply under the payroll individual tab. We’re excited to see you in Miami.
As for what else is in store for Bitcoin in 2015, here are a some stories you might be hearing in the New Year.
On the regulatory front, Ben Lawsky, the NY BitLicense godfather, has taken a fairly conciliatory tone at a speech he gave in DC on December 18. After much feedback from the Bitcoin community on the initial proposed regulations, Lawsky announced that the current draft of the NYDFS BitLicese will apply to fewer sorts of businesses and will require less record keeping and/or financial assets, since the “original requirement simply would not be workable in the virtual currency context”. Lawsky went as far as hinting that the banks and legacy payment systems better get with the times or go the way of Blockbuster Video. Looks like the regulator-in-chief (given the important precedent of NY State) is taking a step in the right direction.
The role of regulation is one of many parallels between Bitcoin and mobile payments, such as M-Pesa, in the developing world. As this article outlines, cooperation from regulators helps with a technology’s success, yet countries that are too bureaucratic get left behind – technology goes where it’s treated best.
Speaking of mobile payments, Braintree CEO Bill Ready has been following Bitcoin for years and now sees Bitcoin becoming a major player in their mobile payments, alongside their Venmo platform. Braintree is owned by PayPal and has recently announced a partnership with Coinbase. Ready is cautiously optimistic about the growth of Bitcoin in mobile payments, with lots of back-end and user interface work to be done before mass adoption by merchants and consumers.
On the Computer Science side, the Bitcoin development to watch into 2015 is the team at Blockstream, which recently raised 21 million to implement the Sidechains idea put forward by Adam Back. Adam Back has been a cryptography pioneer since the 1990’s. Satoshi Nakamoto’s 2008 white paper refers to a “proof-of-work system similar to Adam Back’s Hashcash”. The big idea of Sidechains is a sort of hybrid between Bitcoin and Alt-coins: allow for flexibility and low-risk innovation of Alt-coins yet still remain interoperable with the most-secure Bitcoin blockchain we all know and love. Although the viability of Sidechains at first seemed to require a one-time change to the heart of the Bitcoin protocol, Adam and his all-star team have now found a workaround that allows them to proceed with Sidechains without waiting for the ever-cautious Bitcoin lead developers to accommodate them.
Bitcoin is here to stay, although adoption might not be as fast, nor the price as predictable, as the faithful would like. Early in 2014, when bitcoin was around $1000 (on the razor-thin markets, some of which might have been bot-trades) the faithful were predicting a $10,000 bitcoin by the end of 2014. Seems like we have much more adoption and plans for more adoption by the big players instead. Come and meet us in Miami to find out more about what lies ahead.
Make sure to sign up to Bitcoin Payroll for a chance to receive free tickets to the Miami Bitcoin Conference January 16th-18th in early 2015.
Stay warm and keep it classy Bitwagers,