The Old and the New (Gold Coins and Bitcoins)
There’s been no shortage of stories over the past 10 years about information technology and the law, and how new toys and gadgets will change the face of it all. This is easier, that is easier, blah, blah blah.
Missing from those “tech is great” stories is this little nugget: Sometimes there’s nothing wrong with the old ways.
Two stories this week bring that concept into sharp focus. The first is the implosion of Mt. Gox, the the world’s largest exchange for trading bitcoins, a virtual currency that is backed up only, it seems, by the willingness of others to believe in it. 750,000 bitcoins have gone missing worth, on a good day, about $300M. Why anyone would be surprised that an unregulated digital “currency” backed up only by faith might have problems is beyond me.
Because hacking and digital theft don’t really exist, I guess.
And the second story is the discovery by a California couple of eight cans holding 1,400 gold coins in mint condition. Preliminary estimates put the find at about $10M. The newest of the coins are 120 years old, minted in 1894. Gold coins have been used as currency for thousands of years.
Bitcoins and gold coins. A very interesting pairing of stories.
The newest tech gadgets might, in fact, make some lawyering easier. You can bring your whole file to court, to the house or elsewhere on an iPad. That certainly can be convenient, and also serve to make sure you are now working 24/7.
But proceed with caution. Just because a technology is new doesn’t mean it is better.