End Times News Update
Sign: Mark of the Beast (cashless society coming?)
Scripture: Rev 13:16-18
News Source: Popular Science
Canada Launches Its Own Virtual Cash, Called MintChip
By Rebecca Boyle Posted 04.12.2012 at 11:02 am
Next time you visit Canada, you might use digital currency to purchase
your poutine, using something called MintChip backed by the Canadian
government. The Royal Canadian Mint announced it’s getting rid of the
penny and starting a new e-currency instead, and it wants the software
community to help develop it.
The government just launched the MintChip Challenge — which was
apparently so popular it’s already fully registered — to seek new
digital payment apps for this new virtual currency. The idea is sort
of a hybrid, combining the convenience of electronic transactions and
the anonymity of cash. It will work via SD cards, but it will have no
personal information or bank account data associated with it. It’s
sort of like BitCoin but with actual, government-backed value.
The four-month contest includes 500 developers who will build apps
that can demonstrate MintChip’s value. They’ll have to work on a
variety of smartphone and desktop browsers. The prize: Solid gold
wafers and coins worth about $50,000.
Its anonymity is a pretty unique idea. Other electronic payment
systems — PayPal, Square, NFC-enabled phones, etc. — all connect to a
person’s credit card or bank account. But cash is a great equalizer;
you don’t need to have good credit to use it. MintChip would enable
the same type of low-cost transactions for which you’d normally use
cash. A Canadian banking group called Interac estimates that
small-value transactions under $20 are worth $90 billion to the
Canadian economy, the Toronto Star reported.
MintChip still has some kinks to be ironed out, including privacy,
security of the currency and other questions. But it’s certainly an