Today, I took my first bold step in Bitcoin! I bought some! About $40 worth of Bitcoins (0.17 bitcoins at the time). Some time last year, I was made aware that a bitcoin ATM was installed in a bakery/cafe place in Arksarben village near where I worked and I found out that they were going to have an official launch party/meet up tonight so I went to check it out.
I actually had to buy a used android phone off ebay because none of the portable devices that I own could have a bitcoin wallet installed. My phone is a Nokia and Windows phone has no wallet apps (that is not exactly true, there is one in beta and one called Copay, but it was too sluggish to be practical), my iPod was to old and no apps were supported on my version of IOS (DAMN YOU APPLE!), and finally I have an Nvidia shield thingy, which runs on android but has no camera, so no good either. The upside is that I can use the used phone as cold storage since it only connect to the internet via wifi, and will be turned off unless I using the Bitcoin app.
The ATM itself is really easy to use. I remember reading stories about some model requiring you to scan your Driver’s license and taking a hand scan for identification, but this one had none of that none-sense. All it asks is a phone number to give a confirmation code, then it asks if you to buy or sell bitcoins. To buy scan your wallet address using your QR code, put you cash in and then it will send your bitcoin to your wallet. It is that simple. Don’t have a Bitcoin wallet with you? No problem, the ATM can generate a “paper wallet” receipt that you can use later to cash in your Bitcoins.
I was the first customer to use the ATM and to buy something at the shop using Bitcoin! What an achievement! I got to meet some of Omaha’s Bitcoin enthusiasts and entrepreneurs too, and they are a great bunch of people. If you think that Silkroad was representative of the Bitcoin community, you could not be more wrong! Shoot outs to Edward and Bethann from Alpha Bitcoin for organizing this event! Also shout out to Edward again for stumbling unto my blog and commenting, letting me know about this!
Anyways, on to the other thing I wanted to write about: the stupid weather. Last week, we were freezing and achieved new records in winds chills. -20F! It was lip cracking cold! Even this Monday, my car was telling me it was 5F when I left from work. But today, suddenly, it is 57F… it feels like spring! It is going to last just for the weekend too, and it is going back to freeze mode later next week. I going to try to take advantage of that i see what kind of cool outdoorsy things I can do this weekend. I heard there is a Kool-aid museum In Nebraska, maybe I’ll check it out.