We are joined by Edward Weniger from AlphaBTC for our annual update on the Blockchain, Bitcoin and Facebook Libra. We always enjoy having Edward with us and he did not disappoint. I think you will enjoy the show.
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Podcast, Home Gadget Geeks, Bitcoin, Blockchain, Facebook, cryptocurrency, wallet, pay, bank, coin, crypto, fees
Jim Collison [0:00]
This is The Average Guy Network. And you have found on gadget geeks show number 410. recorded on July 25 2019.
Here at Home Gadget Geeks we cover all the favorite tech gadgets that find a way to your home news reviews, product updates and conversation all to the average tech guy. I’m your host, Jim Collison broadcasting live from the TV studios here in a beautiful Bellevue Nebraska. I have both Edward and Mike Edward is sitting outside. Edwards gotta be great. Pretty great night right?
Edward Weniger [0:42]
Jim Collison [0:44]
Yeah. Mike, have you gotten a chance? I know, you’ve been super busy. But I mean, the last we had the heat way, right? I think all of them are the United States had this monster heat wave. Then all of a sudden, it’s like forgiveness. It’s like sorry, right?
Mike Wieger [0:56]
It was it was like a 20 degree difference to because we were in you know, right on 100. And then I think yesterday we are in the like, right at at most of the day, it was one of the first mornings that I woke up and my my AC hadn’t even kicked on because my temperature in the house stayed below my setting, which is always a always a blessing. When that you you just see dollar signs may be coming back into your wallet, not AC just sucking it all out. Because during that heat wave that AC just ran constantly.
Jim Collison [1:22]
Yeah, it was on a lot. I’m sure nest thermostats were all trying to figure out like, well, and
Mike Wieger [1:28]
that was a big savings for me was I had the ecobee out of town a lot during it and just being able to control and set and see what it was doing was actually a real benefit. And that’s where the Eco be having those sensors and all the different rooms and doing the smarter way it was. I’m sure I did save a lot, it would be really fun to see the savings calculator if there was a way to do that. on how much you save in a peak time like that.
Jim Collison [1:48]
Yeah, yeah, that’s the time I’ve purchased OPPD they have, that’s our power company. They have a little regular that they’ll put on your air conditioner. And during peak times, they’ll send signals so that your compressor runs every 10 minutes or whatever. And they say, they say it helps. And so I’ve kind of participated in that program. I got like a $50 credit to get it. We didn’t during that during that we didn’t notice my wife keeps this place frigid. Like I’m in here with a hoodie on. I am freezing. Edward, have you deployed for a four h vac? Have you deployed any tech?
Edward Weniger [2:24]
No, I don’t have anything fancy for that. No.
Mike Wieger [2:27]
Okay. And OPPD the way they do that program, because I’m part of that as well, I think they can only do it three days of the year. And it’s to help them with peak load. But you get that credit on your on your statement, which is nice. And then it does help great on those three days, obviously, it’s not costing you less money, because it’s just not going to run that outside, you know, it’ll still your AC will still kick on as in the blower in the house. It just won’t kick on the unit outside.
Jim Collison [2:52]
Yeah, that was so go ahead, go.
Edward Weniger [2:54]
There was some stuff we’re doing at work, though, related to, to those topics of IoT in the home and some of its environmental that at some point, we could probably do a show on when I can talk about it publicly.
Jim Collison [3:07]
Yeah, that’d be great. Any any of those, those kinds of things would be good, Mike, I think it’s more like 10 days, not three, but always, you know, 10 and then they say, like no three in any two week period, it’s a weird formula like there, they want to convince you you’re not gonna you’re not even going to notice this right? You’re not even going to notice we’ve also had just as we’re talking about this op ed is is putting in a big solar farm up up in North Oh, near Blair, I think and you can buy into it now it doesn’t really change your doesn’t really change your costs. But it does help them offset them putting in some additional, you know, renewable energy stuff. And it wasn’t terribly expensive. I think you could buy shares at 100 bucks each or whatever and then eventually they’ll start using or you’ll start seeing those that power show up on your power bill for those farms that they’re the solar farms that they’re using. So at least they’re trying i mean it’s it’s we’re not California out here so you know, I don’t mind them try and Mike Have you did you have you looked into that at all or did you know that was available to
Mike Wieger [4:19]
you know, I did well because I wanted to put solar on the house that’s just eventually something I’ll probably get to but back when I was signing up the thing with OPPD I don’t know if they still do this but they offered you two options you can either get the thing installed or if you had a nest they can actually just tap into your nest and control it that way without coming out and putting that thing on. But I was thinking you know, I would much rather have them come out put their own device that can only control that AC unit because they do it on the outside the house it just controls that I don’t know if I want them tapped into tapped into my nest that’s just one more thing but you know with IoT I’m sure a lot of people just signed right up so Oh yeah, super simple and probably even think about possible security flaws there you know,
Edward Weniger [5:00]
speaking of Facebook, talking about them that’s on here
Jim Collison [5:03]
Yeah, we will we will here in just a second the I would love this house has the best south facing roof ever. Like it’s just a big long I have a big long roof face of South and I just kind of wish I could put solar on there and then I’d run all my Bitcoin off of it. That’s what there you go better that’s what I would do well, couple couple reminders for folks checking in one don’t forget subscribe to our Don’t forget to download the app if you’re gonna listen to Home Gadget Geeks on the road. Best way to do that Home Gadget Geeks. com you can support the show on Patreon if you want to do that that way and that $5 plan now has that coin associated with the Home Gadget Geeks coin that Ron made for us and so if you support us just one month I’ll send you out the coin and you can get access to that as well. The average guy.tv slash Patreon get you there and then join us in discord the average guy.tv slash discord alright we’ve already heard from Edward has joined us back tonight if you’re new to Home Gadget Geeks Edwards from from alpha etc. and is our Bitcoin experts in blockchain I should really say blockchain expert but you know there’s a little Bitcoin in there as well. And Edward, welcome back to Home Gadget Geeks.
Edward Weniger [6:11]
Hey, thanks for having me again. Yep, good
Jim Collison [6:13]
to have you. We’re going to talk Facebook and Libra here in just a second. But I want to get a quick update you we know you because you’ve set up ATMs as well around city of Omaha, I think one in Lincoln as well. Last time we saw you I think Bitcoin has was at the on the bottom of this. And maybe we might have been asking questions like, Hey, is this still working? And those kinds of things? Since then, we’ve seen Bitcoin recover from 3500 to 20. It’s gone as high as probably 12 or 13. in there. How’s that? Is that changed your business at all? And how’s how’s the ATM business? And how those things gone?
Edward Weniger [6:49]
No, are I mean, our businesses have been very good. We’ve hit monthly highs on a regular basis in terms of volume in the price. The I think that too much. And so I think I mean, our major, the price really gets us in the mining side of things. And so obviously, we’re mining at a loss for a while there. And so we’re finally breakeven, again, essentially. And so, Sam, I think that’ll be the, in that regard. Like I’m looking forward to mining at a real profit at some point here in the near term future. Yeah. And probably join going to be ramping up the our mining efforts as well. So I just sent out some inquiries about a new batch of mining equipment. So hopefully we’ll have some more Koreans.
Jim Collison [7:38]
Did you do you feel those as the market was changing? Do you feel the inquiries inquiries go up? As you know, we saw 6000 and then 10,012 thousand? Do you see the things changed as or is it still been pretty quiet?
Edward Weniger [7:54]
I think people are. I think there’s enough public understanding right now that I think people who want to are going to get into it, kind of understand and know what they’re doing now. I was I was I guess I says maybe not new inquiries that people are asking. But I guess education is to a point where people have figured it out on their own. And but they’re still buying like new new market entries. Yes. But not as much of an education process. I think it’s just been around long enough that people kind of get it.
Jim Collison [8:27]
So yeah. Mike, is you talk about it a little bit, do you, you get that same feeling like people were not you’re not having to explain I still do when I’m talking to people about it. But you feel there’s less of that now than there was maybe people are getting it more.
Mike Wieger [8:41]
So it’s interesting, what I think is people have at least you know, because I’m in the finance industry, right? So people generally have hopped on board with this thing as an investment. It’s been on the big major news channels enough that they they think they understand it. So they’re like, Oh, yeah, Bitcoin? Oh, yeah. cryptocurrency got it. Yep, you know, it all the prices are going up, and they can talk about it. They have, but they’re no longer interested because it’s no longer like a new tech. They’re not wondering the tech behind it anymore. So they’re not asking you to explain blockchain as much as they used to. Because I think they they don’t know that there’s a big deep, you know, technological advancement here behind cryptocurrency. I don’t know why that changes happen. I think people have just, it’s almost become a common term. Now. It’s no longer something new. So people aren’t as interested with me, at least on knowing the tech behind it. And everyone at work knows that I’m really into it. And I can explain the blockchain to them if they want. But they’re just not asking. So I don’t know if you guys are seeing that same thing. But it’s been odd.
Edward Weniger [9:37]
I would imagine it’s probably
the people that are curious in their minds function and that they want to learn probably have done all their learning already. And now you’re just getting the people that just want to use stuff and they don’t care about the underpinnings. That’s a good point.
Mike Wieger [9:54]
Yeah, that’s probably exactly it.
Jim Collison [9:56]
Edward, besides currency, are you do you guys see in any other usage, legitimate usage of the blockchain? Were folks are really taking advantage of that? Or is it all been around currency so far?
Edward Weniger [10:10]
I think it’s still in a face the blockchain stuff is specifically still in a phase of innovation. And that’s kind of where Bitcoin was a few years maybe ago that it’s people are are using it not because it’s the best tool, but they’re using it because they want to see how it works. And figure out how to use it better. And so I don’t think that has changed much except just maybe more adoption, but not at a if you want to be profitable. There’s not a blockchain flavor. Really. Like if you if you want to be innovative then and get some investor money or whatever, then that’s, that’s where the blockchain part would come in. And, and someday, hypothetically, right, like when everybody’s using etc, maybe that would be it’d be a profitable venture at that point. But right now, you you’re just trying to get bought, if you are using blockchain, I would imagine so.
Mike Wieger [11:03]
And it’s interesting, too, because I think either the time we talked last year, maybe two times ago, I was at KPMG. And I was talking about how the big for auditors are getting into, you know, how do we provide Audit Services for the blockchain? And it was kind of a hypothetical at that point? Well, I was actually just talking to some colleagues who are there, you know, I’m no longer there, but they’re there. And they are getting some really cool massive engagements for blockchain auditing, and coming and actually building blockchains for them and developing the work papers like for a sock report on how do we test this stuff, what kind of test you need to be doing. And so seeing that stuff actually happened before for me was a hypothetical, although that would be a good market for them to pursue, shows me and I mean, these are some big players, some big names that you would hear about. And to hear that they’re actually working on this in the background, I think there’s a lot going on that Edward you probably know about, but maybe not the rest of us even know about that are some big massive projects that are happening. And maybe they’re just not public yet, because they take so much time to develop, because they’re really trying to get the fine tuned details here. And they’re big, massive companies who have the pressure, they can’t just be a startup who spins it up and then sells it right, so that some of them are looking to really develop a mature product. That has been a lot of fun to see. And like I’ve always said, good to see it, the auditors are actually taking an interest in it so that these things can actually be tested, audited, and the users can have some semblance of trust in the product they’re going to be using.
Edward Weniger [12:29]
Well, I think that like, you know, to your point, the folks that have money, I would still consider that and out working of their innovation arm or they’re like we have some money to spend and this is something we think is worthwhile for the future. XYZ reason. But as far as and so like, I guess it’s your point, you know, to answer the question, like, you know, you can talk about Creighton University launched their FinTech degree. So David recently for FinTech, what do you think Really? Yeah. Which touches on I believe they talk about blockchain that. And then there’s been some alliances that First National Bank has made with some blockchain companies that I don’t know what is in the works there. But potentially, then something might come out of that. And so there’s some larger there are larger organizations getting into it, you’ve seen a lot of enterprise adoption, I would agree with that, or use cases. But they have money to blow as well versus mid level companies. So we call that r&d and the business you
Jim Collison [13:33]
know, CFO wants to blow. We, we’ve hired actually, for our for this is our first summer Gallup of having three FinTech interns program.
Edward Weniger [13:49]
You guys even have RND or Gallup
Jim Collison [13:52]
not not in the area of blockchain. I can’t go on.
Edward Weniger [13:56]
Yeah, in general, do r&d,
Jim Collison [13:59]
little little bits, we do it a little bit different in the fact that we oftentimes work with college students to get that done. But But mostly on existing stuff. The we have a Creighton student, who’s who’s a part of our program, and one from Indiana University, one from Yunel, Lincoln. And so but there were starting to think kind of along those terms, and I’ve been trying to get some influence in there in that area to say, Hey, we ought to really start thinking about this. As I mentioned, we mentioned Facebook, and I think that really, when Facebook made this announcement two months ago, or whatever, that they were getting into the space, Edward, you probably know it better than we do. But can you do a quick summary like, if for people who haven’t followed what’s happened there? Give us just a little a quick two minute catch up on on what you know of that situation?
Edward Weniger [14:50]
Well, we were talking about nest and giving permission to the utilities. I was asking if you guys had talked about the privacy issues around to Google and Facebook and stuff. Oh, show?
Jim Collison [15:00]
No, we haven’t know it’s a good. It’s a good topic, we should probably we should probably bring that one up that that went back up to.
Edward Weniger [15:07]
So yeah, Libra is there’s three parts to it. A lot of what I know comes from Kyle Todd, who runs Radovan talks about blockchain stuff too. And we meet up and he gave a good overview of it.
See how there’s, there’s Libra, there’s,
you know, the coin or the for profit or whatever, there’s the nonprofit. And then there’s the wallet, that is the first wallet that Libra will use. And there’s I think, whatever 28, large, multi billion company dollar companies that are part of the node system. And so it’s essentially, if I launched Edward coin and went to the, you know, 20 big banks in Omaha and Edward coin was, you know, they were all part of my Consortium, like back in the day, three days, when there were a bunch of banks as part of our three, the, you know, those guys then are going to run a node for me. And so because we trust First National Bank, because we trust centrist, we trust that every coin is legit, and they’re all you know, BM, because of the governance around that Association, the nonprofit specifically, then there’s, there would never be a time where they could do something that was, you know, it’s kind of checks and balances for Facebook, in light of all their heat that they’ve taken because of their privacy issues. And data. And so they hypothetically, you’d have to get a lot of large companies who have some value or or, or advocacy in the realm of privacy, or how to do things well, technologically, that you would have to get them to vote maliciously, if something malicious was going to happen, a majority of them. And so so that’s, you know, you can certainly see where, well, it’s only talked about in terms of payments, right now, you know, the ability that if I’m, if I’m in, if I’m here in the US, I want to buy some Libra, I buy it with US dollars. Now I’m in the Libra, the Facebook Libra ecosystem, so now I can send it to any other Facebook user, they can either keep it in Libra, or they could exchange it into their local currency at whatever the you know, they’ve got some calculations or relatives to figure out the exchange rate. And in reality, like that was one thing that I I didn’t get or still don’t understand is like, what is the what is the if I buy five Libra with US dollars and that’s like one US dollar or something like that. So I have five believers at one US dollar if I’m in the Kenyan, whatever their fee is, if I’m now I’m How does my five Libra is good transferred it converted into Kenyan, right is it compared to the dollar at the end of the day. So there’s this, you know, kind of floating balance between you know, they they become a currency exchange on par with any of this, any of the exchanges that you would, you know, day trade, the Japanese yen in or whatever compared to the US dollar and just make a penny on the difference or arbitrage or whatever. So, hypothetically there’s, there’s a weird arbitrage thing going on there. And that’s probably true with any coin, too. So there’s a wallet that they have, they are creating, and they’re the first the first and only Wallet for now, but then after I think a year that you you there be potential for other wallets to use Libra as well. And so that’s there’s different, you know, for the way that sound and again, I haven’t looked into this specifically, like, as far as like, where you buy the on ramps, quote, unquote, on ramps to Libra are where a lot of the concern and regulation are, because that’s obviously where the money laundering is. And so if I have $1,000, what sort of checks what sort of compliance requirements will have to go through to buy $1,000? With Libra versus $10,000 worth lever? Right? What are the limits there? And who who can you buy it from? Could it become a good to start a black market for Libra? just weird things like that? And that’s obviously what the government’s concerned about it. So yes,
Jim Collison [19:32]
So why the control? why not just use one of the existing coins and a theorem or a Bitcoin? Why not just do that?
Edward Weniger [19:41]
Yeah. So there is a
the way the the nonprofit structured, I believe it’s the nonprofit is that these 28 companies that are, so there’s 20 companies, and I think they’re going to go up to max of 100 companies in the first and then like 500 to 1000 ever. Total companies in the nonprofit. And these are, were these are huge companies like Trello, Vodafone, stuff like that. All over the world. There’s like one nonprofit in there. There’s one startup company in there, each of them put in $10 million to be a part of the ecosystem. And what they basically are doing with that money is that money is then collateralized against Libra to, you know, yeah, well, to assuage the regulator’s concerns that if something goes bad, then we have US dollars to backups, we can always pay out for the graph, the price crashes. So you’re taking that $10 million. So I’m over I put $10 million in, and now I have a this money and holding? Well, some some way the whole math works out is that you’re now basically earning interest on your money on your $10 million. And so they’ve invested in a nonprofit, they get ahead your return on that investment. And so so that’s why I mean, that’s where the whole that’s, that’s what backs the currency. And that’s what makes all these players a lot of money and stuff like that. Yeah,
Jim Collison [21:13]
that’s add some faith to it. Right? You gotta, you gotta give some faith to the currency. So
Edward Weniger [21:18]
keep your question, why didn’t they use a different coin is because they probably couldn’t get rich off of like, just buying a theory. I’m right. Like, if they control the ecosystem, they can figure out how to reimburse themselves appropriately.
Jim Collison [21:31]
Yeah. Now that makes that makes sense. Now, now they think of it that way. What’s the so in a in a traditional blockchain Bitcoin model, right? You have miners, you know, forging these blocks, is it different in this model, I’m assuming it’s a different it’s going to be different blockchain or is going to be built on top of an existing chain, or how’s that going to work?
Edward Weniger [21:53]
They use a consensus protocol from I wasn’t it, wasn’t it, Amazon hyperledger was some random camera, it’s a large Marsh, or some large well known it company, that, that that’s where they got their consensus algorithm. And as far as the, how it’s created, as far as I understand, it’s essentially ondemand. So what happens is when you ondemand, as people buy, so if I put 100 US dollars in to buy Libra, I get 100 US dollars up to infinity, essentially. And there’s not a I don’t know of any cap on that. But that money then goes into the holding fund, along with essentially the money that you were put in, and then that that that those holdings, whatever percentage is that I assume that some point that won’t be 100%. With the 10 million that’s already put in there, it will probably fizzle down at some point, or scale down at some point. This is it. So that money goes into this holding fund, then, so so there’s nothing stopping them from continuing to add holding fund and generating new Libra and giving you a year $100 worth a Libra. There’s no for my understand, there’s no real mining process.
Jim Collison [23:15]
So they’re not they’re not having to mine and forge and build this blockchain necessarily the way the way we do it today or the way most most cryptocurrencies do it today.
Edward Weniger [23:26]
No, and I could be totally wrong with that. If somebody can fact check me, but the but there’s not a The reason I brought up the contestants algorithm is because you really as long as you can, as long as you can cryptographic Lee create more coins, it doesn’t sound like there’s any real limit on that the nodes are for very afraid for fine. transactions. Yeah, there was no talk of miners, JJ,
Jim Collison [23:51]
ya know, and that makes that that part makes sense. As far as the verification piece goes, right, it’s getting that consensus, having those nodes making sure you don’t have one central point of weakness, or the truth is spread around. kind of seems like the kind of the right thing to do. Go ahead.
Edward Weniger [24:09]
No, I disagree with you.
Jim Collison [24:11]
Yeah. And so it’s, it is interesting can kind of what’s your take on this, as you think about this, through the through the eyes of alpha, BBC or in the work that you’ve done? Does this sound I mean, it does sound like big money’s going to be controlling the nodes, it’s going to be, you know, they’re going to be trying to make different make money on the spread, or some of those kinds of things as well, as you know, that to them, I can see the advantage to them is having a payment system that’s fairly universal. We’ve been talking about this for a while being able to move money internationally low cost, right? For some of these organizations to be global, it See, it would be way convenient for them to be able to move in charge in a currency that doesn’t have to stay in its country. And so those kinds of things are interesting. But what do you think?
Edward Weniger [25:01]
I think, yeah, I think this will survive, not because it’s a good idea. But just because everybody uses Facebook, and it’ll, I mean, people are going to start once they get their money into, into it, it’ll, they’ll just keep, you know, bouncing money around from customer, user to user. And it all I mean, especially if he, I mean, you started to think about like, obviously, in my in, in my line of work, we deal with a lot of scams and people sending money overseas, and, again, money laundering, and, you know, funding all sorts of stuff, right? And so, that will be you know, I get even pinged every once in a while, by some random Bitcoin enthusiasts from other continents. And, you know, it’s so crazy, you get people who are reached out to via Google Hangouts by some anonymous stranger, and eventually get talked into sending money to them. And it’s just like,
and so and so I could see. So I don’t know what they’re going to do about that. I don’t know if they’re gonna make the transaction, if they can send it back, or what the, you know, if the person just gets the Libra and takes it off the platform, then it’s in their hands now. And there’s nothing you can do really to call that back. So I mean, but yeah, I think once it, I think people are going to use it. And I think you’ll probably hear some of those horror stories. And hopefully, it’ll help to educate people and make them aware of the scammers out there. But probably, it’s going to keep happening and hopefully smaller and smaller degree, but I think it’ll stick around for sure. And I mean, there’s no downside, there’s no risk to them. There’s no real potential loss, like if they, if they decide to scrap the whole thing like Google wave or whatever, right? Like they’re going to cash everybody else, they’ve got $10 million from 1000. He’s got some cash on hand to do this. And it’s just a giant experiment. But I think they’ll have enough adoption and buying from, because, again, everybody cares about, everybody’s on Facebook. And nobody really cares about the privacy or ownership of their money. And so it’s just convenient. And it’ll work out just like you can send money through Gmail right now. Stuff like that.
Mike Wieger [27:21]
Yeah, I think you nailed it, I think because everyone’s on Facebook and have such a big user base. And I mean, to be honest, sending cryptocurrency still isn’t the easiest thing to do. Outside of one of these apps, right. So if you have an app like Facebook, to me, it reminds me of, you know, all of my friends were all ven Mo. But a few of them, we’ve converted, I’ve converted over to because they all have iPhones. It’s super easy. In the I message, I can just say, you know, send them 20 bucks, I it’s a one less app, I have to open and figure out it’s super quick and easy. If the person’s on it. And you just have a sheer number on Facebook, and it’s going to be easy typing their names. It’s almost like it’s probably I I haven’t looked into it probably in the messaging system, right? Where you just tap on it, send them however much money you want.
Edward Weniger [28:06]
And you’d have the wallet. And so you’d have to open the wallet. So I don’t know you do.
Mike Wieger [28:11]
Okay. It won’t be integrated into the messaging system where Yeah,
Edward Weniger [28:13]
I would imagine at some point, that might be a thing, but I or or might have to reside outside of the messaging system of the generic. I don’t know how to work but well, that will be the key right there.
Mike Wieger [28:23]
How easy it is to use that I think that’ll be the key because right now, it’s still, if I want to send my dad, Bitcoin, you know, I have to send me your address, what’s all that stuff? And it’s or, you know, snap me your QR code and text it to me or whatever. So it’s still not the easiest thing to do.
Edward Weniger [28:39]
I think the it’ll, I mean, I give them props for trying it for doing the blockchain thing. They didn’t have to, they could have just made Facebook cash or something really boring and generic, and they didn’t so good for them. And hopefully, I mean, it’s not a true cryptocurrency or it’s not the real, you know, truly
Mike Wieger [29:01]
Edward Weniger [29:02]
Yeah. Yeah, it’s not bad. But you know, I think it will help with getting London the Enterprise’s we’ve already seen like Microsoft and Malik, I think it’ll help continue to warm up the whole enterprise and users to what blockchain is, and that it’s a safe thing and a real thing and stuff like that.
Jim Collison [29:20]
So is it more like ripple than it is like Bitcoin in the sense that are?
Edward Weniger [29:26]
It’s, I would say, it is one step above verbal, or maybe a few steps in terms of ripple is controlled and owned by rebel, basically. So Facebook has at least made the effort to get some other parties involved that have some real weight, and could stand up to them if they started making stupid decisions,
Jim Collison [29:47]
right. So why I guess it’s because that’s Facebook, but we this has been going on for a while, but then all of a sudden, Facebook says they’re going to do it, and it just goes nuts for, you know, in the new cycle for it is it did just go nuts. Because we, we can’t trust Facebook, for the most part, and they’re getting involved in financial transactions, or all of a sudden,
Edward Weniger [30:09]
I think the timing was very well done. To I mean, they have had, you know, I mean, they could have, they’ve probably been working on it longer than this I camera when that guy got moved into that position. But Facebook, but you know, they could have ramped it up and made it all happen, or at least written the white paper, obviously, in a year or, you know, with the talent, they probably could have written the white paper in a month but like the but conveniently right from the time they start to take heat, a lot of heat from the government and from the public about how what their practices were in terms of other things and or even just as like a PR recovery from the the Cambridge Analytica scandal, stuff like that. Right. But anyway, so I suspect it’s more related to the fact that they’re starting to before the Congress for hearings that they needed some positive news or different news. And this was their way of getting it. So
Jim Collison [31:09]
yeah, it’s an interesting way of giving positive news. You know, we’re we’re also in a new cycle where we’re seeing United States government begin to investigate Amazon, Google, Facebook, apple, for some of their some of the things that they’re doing. I don’t think it’ll be long before the EU does follow suit and goes after those. If not, I mean, in many cases, there are they already have, but I, I think this is going to be like a Microsoft esque 90s going after the ones those guys are locked in they, they really don’t unlock. And so that could be interesting. So, you know, I guess thinking from a consumer, I don’t know, it’s weird. For me, it’s part of me is okay, this makes sense. This could be kind of cool. And then there’s another part of me that kind of goes, this is kind of weird. You know,
Edward Weniger [32:01]
I maybe you will think twice about it. I don’t think most people think twice about just putting 100 bucks on their Facebook, and then they maybe restock it a few months later, or whatever. But it would just be we’re sending it around the world and sending it to need, it’s convenient. And I just people are more driven by expediency than anything. But yeah. I mean, you get to talk about, like, who can see you’re just like Cambridge Analytica, who can see your friends who can see your transactions, you know, where your transactions going? Certainly, there’s all those concerns. And I, if, you know, I have I have no plans or desire to buy any or use it. But that doesn’t mean that, you know, like, I keep some money in my paypal account, just in case. Right. And so I’ll probably keep some in Facebook. But if I really want to send somebody money, that’s probably not what I’m going to use. But that doesn’t mean other people will not. Yeah,
Jim Collison [32:57]
yeah, I guess if it’s convenient. And it works. And, you know, we we we look at Facebook, they’re not the only one buying us, right? I mean, there are, how many, right? I mean,
Edward Weniger [33:10]
I mean, if Mark Zuckerberg comes to you and says, Hey, can you give me 10 million bucks? You’re not going to sell? No, like, I mean, they’re the other people are just there to make everybody feel better about it. Yeah, I mean, Facebook could have been would have done it on their own. Oh, you think so? Yeah. Okay, for sure. Okay.
Jim Collison [33:28]
Well, interesting, I think. Do you know, the timeline? have anybody released anything as far as when it will be usable? or
Edward Weniger [33:37]
late 20s? Oh, I know. I don’t remember what quarter it is. But saying like, 2020?
Jim Collison [33:42]
Yeah. And you’re, you’re telling me, Edward, as soon as it comes out, you’re going to put a little money in there just to kind of try it out? Is that?
Edward Weniger [33:48]
No, no, I will probably use it for something. I’ll needle, you know, the lecture and there are somebody else send me money, and I won’t withdraw? And then I’ll have it in there. And I’ll send it to somebody else. Like, it’s gonna be like, I mean, yes, I will probably experiment with it. But as far as using it for any useful purpose, it will, they will probably come when I do that. Yeah. Yeah.
Jim Collison [34:10]
Yeah. And I’m trying to think you know, so there’s marketplace transactions that are there, right, so I can buy and sell things in their marketplace, which is had Mike, you probably use the marketplace more than I have? Do we know how often? Or how big is the revenue? Or never seen any of those numbers on Facebook marketplace? Is that driving a significant? Would they would anybody know? Since the transaction doesn’t go through them today? Right? It doesn’t
Mike Wieger [34:36]
know. I mean, you you can i think i think you can pay through Facebook, somehow. No one has ever I’ve used a lot No one’s ever offered or asked to be paid through Facebook. Usually, it’s all you know, cash event, Mo, Bitcoin, whatever you want to pay in. So I don’t think they would ever know they do ask you to market as sold. And they do have a question for how often you can change the price. So but then they would never know the negotiation of usually I’ll post on there, and I’ll negotiate the price in a message. And then all market is sold in the same way. So no, I don’t think they would ever know.
Edward Weniger [35:15]
So I see two.
And so maybe I’m entirely off base as far as who the users are. And like, I mean, if you’ve done something on Facebook marketplace, or whatever, right, but there’s two hypotheticals of of if I’m paying for something, I think the one of the advantages that it opens up and international market, maybe to them, and maybe I’m wrong, maybe Facebook marketplace already has this, and it works, and people just don’t use it, and Libra will not benefit or help at all. But I see this as like, kinda like an Alibaba type play, where you’re competing, so that if I’m ordering something from China, right, some really cheap widget that I need 100 have to sell on eBay or something like that. So then you could have somebody that you, you could interface with them via Facebook, and you have a little more trust there maybe. And so you could compete with Alibaba in that regard. And so you’re not just buying something from the neighborhood across the street from you, right? And because then you could just pay cash for it. So you saw in the marketplace, even 40 bucks, cash. But because this is more international say, then you could potentially everybody can cash out in their field. The other thing is that, or the other angle is that I see it almost competing with like, global reserve currency of like, I can see them having or Mark Zuckerberg having some, you know, Pinky in the brain aspirations of, you know, that he could compete with the IMF. And you know, everybody will be using Libra someday. And so the US dollar. And so, I mean, those are some, because again, like
Mike Wieger [36:51]
the aspiration of every cryptocurrency trader out there, right?
Edward Weniger [36:56]
Uber has a presence right globally and Sunday, there’s there’s some city areas, right. And so if you start if Uber starts dominating everything, and Libra, then everybody’s going to need some Libra to take it, take a ride and stuff like that. And so it just makes everything easier, because you don’t have to convert when you’re traveling. You just travel with Libra. And then you can pay your Uber driver wherever you’re at and stuff like that. So Right, right.
Jim Collison [37:19]
Go ahead, Mike. You’re gonna say something?
Mike Wieger [37:21]
I wasn’t it totally went away. So I made
the noise ago, hopefully didn’t catch that. It does
Jim Collison [37:27]
does. It does. When you’re talking about international travel. Did you remember it?
Mike Wieger [37:33]
Yeah. No, I was just gonna say I hope they don’t change the marketplace. Just real quick, because that is the one reason I use the marketplace. It’s all local. It’s cash. It’s not, there’s no fee taken out. It’s literally it’s almost like an enhanced Craigslist. That’s all it is. And so that’s what I love about it. So I really hope they don’t change it. Because I don’t need another either. I need a place. I need a Craigslist that’s actually trustworthy, and not full of just a bunch of junk. So in Facebook marketplace, is that to me, I don’t, I had just great luck with the marketplace. As far as people show up. There’s not many scams, the things I post, I don’t get, you know, weird messages, every message I get is a real message. Maybe I’ve gotten lucky. And the things I post are not weird, but like, this is where I sold all of my GPUs and I got into mining them all there. I sold. I just I sell a bunch of stuff on there. And it just works so much better. So I hope they don’t change it like a shipping paying they need you need to pay through the app. That would just be annoying me.
Edward Weniger [38:32]
But you know that I mean, they have aspirations on Alibaba, Alibaba, I’m sure they do. Yeah, like all those things. They’re not really into yet very much. And so why put the marketplace out there if they’re not going to eventually make money on it? Right? Yeah.
Jim Collison [38:47]
Yeah. Well, and I mean, look at Amazon, and where they’re going and the just the gigantic market that is and and so there’s some, you know, there’s is there potential there, it’s interesting these, they will start going head to head. In this space, I was going to say that I was thinking, international travel couple years back when I was going international trip doing some international travel, I was always looking for credit cards where I could use them here in the US and overseas and not incur right, many of them kind of had like, will waive or their free International, whatever there is some like there is some draw to that if you do it, if you do a bunch of international travel where it is kind of convenient, it’s still Edward, we’ve talked about this before, it’s still not super convenient to move money or to get money or to carry cash, or carry whatever currency that you’re in. And a a thing like this, that would be regardless, you would fund it up and then go and use it if I was in Japan, or if I’m in Korea, or if I’m in Australia or Germany, I just use the account and it kind of works like, you know, Google’s got this on their cell phones, right? You go, you you used to incur these gigantic charges when you go overseas. And now just turn it on. And so I could see how quickly for some of these kinds of things were for those that travel and I don’t know how big the international travel market is, or if it’s big enough to be a driving force and some of those kinds of things. But, man, you could you could start seeing a market pop up around that where that could be pretty freakin convenient to just have one one thing, do it all. And think
Mike Wieger [40:24]
of it like Apple Pay with just tap with your phone and you’ve paid with crypto instead. Right? You’ve paid with LIBOR. You’ve paid with whatever, instead of swiping a credit card you tapped and paid with Bitcoin?
Edward Weniger [40:33]
Yeah. I mean, you I mean, crypto, like Mike said, crypto has a user interface problem has had a user interface problem. And so if this is I mean, as important as it is, if this is the solution, right, where you’re in it in Switzerland, and on an Uber, and they you know, do you take Libra? Yes, like, I mean, the ridiculous percentage of the world that has a Facebook account, you know, that will, you know, this, this could be the end. And and I think it will, Bill will hopefully reverse itself back in terms of like, because of this, hopefully, we’ll see more adoption in the real crypto world. And people will get involved in other things besides just Libra and start to use them. So we’ll see.
Jim Collison [41:20]
A year back or so I was spending time with Vint Cerf, he comes to Gallup every so often and I was talking about crypto to him. And you know, he’s he’s a little more, he’s a little more skeptical. And he had said at the time, he goes, you know, one of crypto his big problems is that if you have a wallet and you lose an ID there is or you lose the password for it. There is literally no safety net, you can’t you can’t get it back. You can’t. It’s gone. And whatever you put in there is gone. Right? And he goes, there’s, you know, for the average consumer, that’s just not going to work. Because they don’t they expect to be able to call the bank when they’ve done something wrong or call. I was just talking to somebody was talking to somebody the other day, and they’re like, why can’t Oh, they called, oh, they’d call some utility or something. And they wouldn’t give them any information without certain things over the phone. And it was a bunch of things. And they’re like, can’t you just verify my information? And many people don’t know you. It’s online or nothing type deal in and a lot of people aren’t ready for that, Edward as we think about this situation and the wallet because that’s what’s important. Does Facebook then own and take ownership for the customer service of that wallet? And if people need help with it or lose things around? It does? Are we in that kind of situation?
Edward Weniger [42:43]
Some might say that Facebook doesn’t take ownership burden to any customer service period. So notice, yeah, like any of those companies, like those monolithic Googles, and those guys like getting them on the phone or getting support is, you know, again, you are the commodity or the
loss of families, you are those
whatever Yeah, the say yes, unless you’re paying the money.
I getting support is very hard with those companies. There is a public private key structure in line with other cryptocurrencies attached to the the coin the wallets right. So right now there’s co Libra, their wallet, which will be the first one for a year. So whether you own public or private keys in that situation, I don’t know the answer that question. Whether you own public or private keys with future wallets that come out, that would probably be more likely, right? Where you could actually store your public and private keys. If you lose your private key, then yes, either you’re going to still be hosed. Just like any other. You know, again, you can Can you can you tie it to, can you re authenticate yourself or re get access to your wallet, you using your Facebook account or something like that? Or 12 words? Or you know, something else? Besides that to get your access to your wallet? Again? I don’t know the answer your question. But yes, they would. They these are the things they need to figure out that I don’t know the answer to but but being in that world of taking those phone calls from people who have thrown away paper wallets, right like that is they need to figure that out. And that will probably come through the course of you know, regulatory inquiries from Congress.
Jim Collison [44:29]
Yeah. Mike, in the work, the KPMG conversations, does that come up? As far as regulations or regulators are auditing that kind of work like
Mike Wieger [44:39]
that? Well, you know, not I don’t know, specifically, but what their conversation right now is? What do the regulators Want to see? We don’t know yet. And I mean, we’re starting to see some things but so the the auditors are right now trying to essentially like, see the future? What are the regulars Want to see? So okay, so what do our work papers look like? What are we going to test? What are our controls that we need to see in place to make the regulators happy? And and that’s really that that fine line of of what they’re going to test for to make sure they are compliant in all the ways and that they can issue a sock report on it and and give the customers that peace of mind? So I think I could see that coming up. And if it does, if the regulators, you know, require it, then of course, yeah, they’re gonna, they’re going to check for it and see, what are your controls here to been to make sure that this is what I’m guessing where it’s going, there’s gonna be a controlling place, what your control for a customer just can’t just like, lose all their coins by by losing their private key. There’s got to be something, I’m sure.
Edward Weniger [45:41]
Yeah, and then you kind of and then it just kind of defeats the whole purpose of having a cryptocurrency because you don’t really own your money and night, you don’t care. So you’re going to use it anyways. So
Jim Collison [45:53]
he sounds super sketchy.
Mike Wieger [45:59]
The good old days when the You didn’t know? You couldn’t, we could just get all you know, you just live with it?
Jim Collison [46:06]
Well, what I think happens, and we’re to your point earlier, what I think happens. So you now have private companies really in charge of this? It’s not really distributed. It is in nature, but it’s not really. And then the structure is controlled. I mean, these guys are in the for profit, like the structures behind a Bitcoin or in a theorem. Yeah, there there’s problem, monetary profit in the buying and selling of these transactions as value is added or loss, right? And in those in that setting, but you don’t necessarily have a single company whose idea is, hey, let’s start charging fees against this. Because, you know, that’s the next thing coming, right? I mean, in in a lot of this, there’s like, Okay, how do we, you know, how do we make how do we get fees? I remember the early days of eBay, and then the 15, other eBay, like companies that are out there that are all gone now. And they also started, it was like, Oh, yeah, easy purchase, and this stuff was all free. And we’re going to make it easy for you. And then over the course, every year, a new fee. Oh, no, we’re going to go with now there’s going to be a 1% just to kind of cover this for a while. And then you come back and use the eBay for a long time. And I came back to it. I’m like, holy crap, this is this is more expensive than my credit card. paying interest. Yeah.
Edward Weniger [47:23]
You know, in in. Well, there’s, I mean, you you have the banks who used to not, I don’t think I mean, maybe I’m not adores you, Jim. But I’m just kidding.
Mike Wieger [47:39]
straight face on that one.
Jim Collison [47:41]
You know what, actually, I lost this found. So I missed the joke. I said.
Edward Weniger [47:49]
So banks, it seems like bank fees have crept up over time, right. And so the end, so there is a reality, there is a potential where Facebook could try to. But the other reality is they don’t really need to, because hypothetically, maybe the fee won’t be in the in the exchange necessarily at the Libra, but it will be in the marketplace when you make a transaction, right. But there, they would have done that anyways. And so they make money by you using the Libra, even though you’re not, even though you’re not charged, being charged for the conversion. But on the other hand, like we have, like, so maybe if you buy from Facebook directly, there’s no fees, I think that’s part of the beauty of it, and that will expedite adoption. And they might never have to charge fees, because they’re making money by just selling all your data, right. And so you’re in a user. And so you get they get their money anyways from you. And this is just a convenience thing. But at the same time, they have these on ramps where you’re having to buy Libra. And so folks like, like if we sold Libra at our Bitcoin ATM, which we hopefully will at some point, then you you would charge you would pay a percent to buy to buy a Libra, even though, so you’re getting charged for but it’s not necessarily going into Facebook pocket and stuff like that. So I think they might not ever charge fees for buying or using Libra, because they want people to be on the platform and use the platform.
Jim Collison [49:14]
So Fair enough, sorry, I missed that joke. It just cut right out. And I was like, Oh, I hope I don’t get caught on this on I’m going to act like I just and then you guys were like
Mike Wieger [49:24]
it was an age joke. You know, I was
Edward Weniger [49:26]
asked so my question was did back in the day? Did they did they?
Jim Collison [49:34]
Did they not charge fees as much as the banks as they do? It was horrible. It was horrible back was expensive to chisel into rock,
Mike Wieger [49:41]
Jim Collison [49:46]
cutting boards that copper
Mike Wieger [49:50]
time, that takes a lot of
Jim Collison [49:53]
things inside the bank. Well, I mean, in the 70s, when I watch my parents bank banking was awful. And it was a very, it was a very expensive adventure. And then then in the deregulation and the deep, the deregulation that came with savings and loans, that changed the whole, the whole scheme of banking and the way they do things really made it almost free again, but that free system didn’t work. And you know, as as the savings and loans drove the pressure on the banks. I mean, it got us a lot of great innovation, but it drove the price down on the banks to free checking accounts and free everything right. And banks are like, well, we kind of make money somehow in this thing, right. And we found out through neglect and cheating and some of those other kinds of things that that savings alone system didn’t work. And it it it failed, right. And I came into banking, right as that was happening. And so the FDIC was coming in and cleaning up all these problems and put some put kind of the brakes on some of that. And then banks went right back to, you know, increasing their fees again, in in not in a way that I thought was I mean, yeah, you got to make money, but you need to, you know, there was a time when they were I think charging, they were gouging again, because they could there wasn’t a competitor. And I’m just in this scenario, I’m kind of afraid it’s, it’s a single, this is going to be a single currency without a competitor in its place. And maybe another one will maybe another one pop up, maybe Bitcoin will actually be a legitimate mean, this will drive some innovation with Bitcoin, in on that network, both can be offered, you can come on with Libra and do have the convenience of all the stuff that goes with Facebook, but also bitcoin wallets can come on and still do transactions and do them at a lower cost because there isn’t necessarily the fees or the the people behind it How have to get paid who have to make money on that as well. Right? You could, you could then compete on the onboarding of FIFA via Libra or though the onboarding of FIFA via Bitcoin, it creates some competition. And that’s, I guess that’s what I get a little worried about in a scenario like this is we lose that competitive, we lose lose competition. And that’s never good for the consumer.
Mike Wieger [52:14]
But the great part about this one is it’s not like banking, where I need a bank, right? Like, I don’t need to use Facebook, I don’t need to use Libra, there’s, there’s very little I can pay cash, I don’t, I don’t need to go, I don’t need a channel. Now there are some people that might, right, they need a way to pay International. They do that a lot. They transact with family, and maybe they need that. So they might, you know, other they might not be able to use, they might have to go look at Coinbase and figure out how to use that. Things like that. But I think it’s different when we don’t need it. Now necessity, whereas banking, you print, you need a bank, and you need to go and if you’re forced into certain rates, and you got to use them great, but I don’t think anyone’s gonna have to be forced into using Libra at least anytime soon. Maybe once we start getting into if it does be the international standard for travel and Uber. But again, how often are is that happening for a select few? A lot. But for the rest of us, you know, not too often.
Edward Weniger [53:12]
I think that I mean a few things, if you’re right, like I probably am too optimistic in the fact that they there won’t be fees charged, right? But like any FinTech is going is constantly competing against the banks and driving their fees down and trying to put them out of business. And so this is just a like for now when they’re trying to gain market share, right? It’ll be free probably for a long time. And then eventually, you’re right, they probably will start creeping in fees. And but once they’ve become the standard, or once they’ve got, you know, a user base of loyal user base or have somewhat monopoly on it, and so, but on the other hand, coldly rather wallet, right, like, very easily, most wallets nowadays have more than one coin in them. So it is certainly reasonable that co labor would be able to hold Libra and Bitcoin and Litecoin in a theorem. And then you could you’re not beholden to their, you know, their system of doing things and you could potentially use other cryptocurrencies. And so you’re not if there are fees, right, hypothetically, you could use something else is that to get around it?
Jim Collison [54:15]
Facebook just didn’t have a good record of playing, playing well, in that space, right of saying I suck it along. This is a Microsoft.
Edward Weniger [54:24]
They’re getting a lot of heat, though. I hope that I hope that they do get their act together in response to some of the things that they’re being questioned about. So yeah,
Jim Collison [54:34]
well, it is interesting. And I think when we, I am I do want to see competition, Mike, you know, in 1998, I don’t think you were born yet. With 19. In 1998, I was seven. The the early OSS, a 9798. The early online shopping at Christmas, was from a bunch of different companies that were coming heating, for my business, for gifts for Christmas. And so it wasn’t just Amazon. And today, it’s really just Amazon, right? So 20 years later, there’s one company left when you when you think about online retailing now, there’s little tiny ones that are still doing stuff. But when Amazon offers something, even the next biggest one Walmart has to they buckle to it, they their followers, not leaders, they’re not doing Walmart’s doing not doing anything innovative around the retail space of changing the way Yeah, they’ve got brick and mortar stores, and people can come in and pick things up in the store. But that’s not really changing things. Amazon is still a big leader in that in and I don’t think that it’s working for us today. But I don’t think that’s a healthy retail option to be if they own everything. And so I would love to see, I’d love to see us continue to move in a way where there are multiple players in this and they all they all kind of work. Edward as we think about that, in the in the two or three years, we’ve been talking about this now is Bitcoin theorem making, in your opinion making progress on more adoption, is it getting utilized in other areas? Is it making progress in that in an area of being utilized more for whatever that whatever that scenario is? I think we’ve seen since you and I last talked,
Edward Weniger [56:23]
the lightning has made a lot of progress. And so I think we are going to see some, you know, the benefits being one, miniscule fees, and to really fast payments. And it will become more of I’ll say, like a Libra, right? Where it’s kind of just has unexpected user behavior, which Bitcoin has a lot of a lot of unexpected and explainable behaviors from a user standpoint that they don’t get. And so, so I think lightning network will, will solve making more of a paper where you’re sending money and you’re seeing it right away and stuff like that. And so but aside from Aside from that, which is not, that is a again, it’s a you know, it’s kind of a decentralized effort to launch lightning decentralized effort was it was a decentralized effort to develop it, then launch it, now you’ve got some testing and beta stuff going on. And then eventually, it’ll go to mainstream, but all those things don’t have, there’s not like a huge marketing push behind it, because there’s not somebody that’s got a whole lot of money behind it to push it. And then you got to still teach them how to use it. People want to use a wallet with lightning and stuff like that. So that that is very slow and slow adoption, as we’ve seen over the past 10 years with Bitcoin. And so yeah, it’s nothing compared to the behemoth like Facebook. And so other than that, I mean, as far as like, Who’s, who is doing more, or using video, clamouring spring on Bitcoin adoption. Nothing comes to mind right now, that’s really move the bar at all. I just think we’re just seeing gradual, gradual user adoption, gradual user acceptance of it, or public acceptance of it. Nothing really has been major since you okay.
Jim Collison [58:22]
Okay, so still the same. I mentioned it in the beginning of the show, we’ve seen Bitcoin go from a bottom of 3500, up to 10. I think we’re at 9000. Today, but it’s hovered in that 10 1112 range come back. Any issue you’re thinking about? You know, as you’re thinking about a why for a move, if there’s been no major innovations going on? Why are we seeing a move and the rest of the coins have moved accordingly, a theorem? Everybody else has kind of gone along with it. Is it just a renewed interest? Or any speculation? White’s movie? Again?
Edward Weniger [59:00]
Probably the two biggest things that come to mind are the Facebook stuff, I think, people I think that that kind of moved it from the 8000 to 10,000 range. As far as where why went from 3000 8000? Probably just typical market dynamics, more than anything, maybe the just miners wanting to make money. And I mean, you could hypothetically say, ordering, you could this is just I mean, this is totally unfounded, right, but just trying to make some sort of corollary is the the tariffs on mining equipment, so you wind up having mining equipment costing more, so you wind up having mining costs, you more miners want to recoup that money. And so they’ve got to move the market up, because they got to make the rewards work for them. So stuff like that I could see being something related to why the price went up, that I hear
Jim Collison [1:00:01]
statements like Bitcoin mining is, is taking the same power consumption is all the power used in like this country right here that in the news, right, I hear those kinds of things being used. Have you seen, are we seeing in the space mining getting more efficient? I mean, is this driving? Are we seeing any new equipment or any of those kinds of things that are actually making mining more efficient than last when it comes to power consumption?
Edward Weniger [1:00:28]
Yeah, there’s I mean, the problem, again, goes back to even if you want to buy if you want to buy that efficient equipment, from China, we have to pay tariffs. And so we’re at a, we’re at a disadvantage all the time right now in the US. And so, so whether you’re seeing so yes, you’re seeing efficiency, but it’s costing us more as far as efficiency gains from manufacturers here in the US. I mean, there’s the I wish there were more manufacturers here in the US that is that is for sure. You’re seeing a lot of
I mean, it will have an impact, I think on the
the ability to because what’s happening is you’re seeing it, you’re seeing a secondary market spring up in the US for equipments already on the mainland, right, like an on our continent. And so you’re seeing a lot of older stuff just being recycled around, because it’s not as efficient. And so eventually, you’re going to just have so I guess the best thing for Bitcoin at this point would really just be to have the terrorists removed if China decides to play football with Trump. They
Jim Collison [1:01:40]
are using renewable energy for Right. I mean, being on being completely on renewable mining on that when there’s a cost to build their new. Solar is free. Like it’s just free, isn’t it?
Edward Weniger [1:01:56]
Right there. Yeah. I mean, if you didn’t have to buy solar panels, yeah, I’m just joking.
Jim Collison [1:02:01]
I’m just joking. Yeah. Yeah.
What else should we know? And we’re only think about when we think about the state of cryptocurrency, blockchain. What else do we need to know?
Edward Weniger [1:02:13]
I mean, I think this year is just as good as ever to hopefully end the year with a bang. As far as the price goes. You know, I think hopefully, we’ll see a new all time high. Maybe it’ll be this year. I don’t have any basis for that. I mean, second half, second half of the year seems to be better than the first usually when those things happen. So might not be this year might be next year. Who knows. But I’m always optimistic, of course,
Jim Collison [1:02:41]
well, for this year for me, I I’m actually going to have to pay taxes on it. So like this will be the first year ever. I’ve actually had to pay taxes. I haven’t done anything at a profit and the move from for the move from three to five or three to 10. Well, it’s it’s hard not to make money. You have that stuff, right. I mean, so. So if that if that is a measurement of that as a marker of success. Yeah, I’m gonna have to pay taxes. As it as it appears. Right now. They’re still six months left in the year, five months. It’s very possible. Things could change. And I don’t have to, but that’s not a bad problem to have.
Edward Weniger [1:03:20]
We don’t forget my advisory fees, too.
Jim Collison [1:03:23]
Yeah. Oh, that’s where all the checks in the mail. I sent you some Bitcoin for it.
Mike Wieger [1:03:29]
Oh, you didn’t get it weird.
Jim Collison [1:03:31]
Check your wallet.
Edward Weniger [1:03:36]
We’re going to talk about the Trump tweets as well. Oh, yeah.
Jim Collison [1:03:39]
Yeah, yeah. So So what does that bring those up?
Edward Weniger [1:03:42]
Oh, I. So there’s been quite a bit of
it was because of this, because I think a lot was prompted or the timing was around Facebook, and Leber’s announcement. And then Trump, you know, I mean, he specifically mentioned them actually. And so so yeah, he was he was a bad mouthing, but he was a melting pot so so he did he distinguished between cryptocurrency and digital currency. But he did bad mouth. Libra and he that bad mouth, digital currencies and pretty much bad mouth cryptocurrency and Bitcoin as well. But so yeah. And then, and then minutiae. And then there was talk from like, Steve Nugent and some other like you were seems to be one another. In regards to money laundering, somebody was talking about money, I guess Trump tweeted about it and and see management talk, made some comment about cash being used. Cash not being used very much for for money laundering, in terms of bad mouthing Bitcoin as well.
So I think my take on both of those is
that just like anything else, that Trump says he essentially has to take the opposite position as where he wants to land. Because if he takes the pro Bitcoin position, then the media comes out against Bitcoin. If he takes the anti Bitcoin position, then the media has to go digging and figure out why Bitcoin is a good thing to counter Trump. And in the meantime, you get a whole lot of good press for Bitcoin. And so that’s interesting.
Mike Wieger [1:05:29]
That’s an interesting take on it. Actually, that’s not where I was expecting you to go with that. But you know, it’s, it’s pretty true. Especially with, you know, most, you know, except for Fox, they’re going to be, they’re gonna be, they’re going to be out on this one, if that’s what he’s trying to do. But interesting.
Jim Collison [1:05:44]
Yeah, that’d be good way to do it. Is that a conspiracy? In the sense? That’s a conspiracy?
Edward Weniger [1:05:48]
I listen, 42?
Mike Wieger [1:05:51]
Jim Collison [1:05:53]
No, you never, you never know. I mean, it, you just don’t know, there’s some of the weird things we find out after the fact. So Edward, I’m going to say I am super surprised, it’s made it this long, just to be honest with you, right? When we first started talking about this, you know, I was kind of like, I don’t know, and, and, you know, maybe maybe it’s a flash in the pan. And you know, that run the 19. And it was super fun. And then the slide all the way down to three. And to be honest, I’m surprised I’ve held on to it and worked with it. As long as I have, you know, here we are in the middle of 2019. Or really two years, we kind of I think we first started talking about this the summer of 2017, I think I want to say, or maybe spring, when we first started talking to you about that. And you know, prices were like 200 in those days, pretty different. And I It surprises me, I get a lot of sense, I get a lot, I get a little bit of flack from the listening community, when we talk about this, especially they talk about it this long, I do really, and nobody works, since I’m saying at the end of the show, the people who need to hear this won’t hear it. But I do think it’s really important that we pay attention to this. Like it’s, it’s, regardless of how you feel about it, or regardless of what you think it’s going to be around or not or how it’s going to be used. I think it’s, it’s important enough, and it’s going to be a part of something we don’t know what, but I think as a consumer, you gotta stay, you gotta, you gotta know what’s going on with this. And you got to stay educated around it, I just don’t think it’s one of those things you want to, you know, wake up, Rip Van Winkle someday and be like, Oh, this Bitcoin you know, type deal. I just don’t I think you want to stay, you kind of want to stay out and ahead of it. I do. I mean, I’ve got some hopes for some of the the investments I’ve made in Bitcoin to help me pay off the kids college. That’s kind of a that’s the goal right now, I’m not gonna I’m not gonna hide that I’m in, you know, and having $10 is more than I had before. If I didn’t have it before. It’s $10 more than I had before. I have a little more than that. But, um, so I think for those that are listening, I think it’s really important. I mean, I want I appreciate you coming on here, Edward, and continuing to stay with us on this topic. It’s one of my favorite things to talk about, obviously. But I appreciate you coming on and doing this with us. Mike, anything else you want to add?
Mike Wieger [1:08:24]
No, I agree with you. I think it’s it’s staying up on it staying and like the things like Libra, right? Like a big long conversation we had tonight about that. Those are the kind of news stories that you that you’re going to want to stay up with, because this is where we start to see a shift. And it’s the things Jim, you know, UI. And Edward, when we’ve had you on that we’ve talked about is seeing where this goes as far as user interface as far as public adoption, as far as corporations getting involved, what are the banks do to rebut what cryptocurrencies are doing? And we’re starting to see that happen right now. So this is where rubber hits the road, I think a little bit and it’s all been the talk before and the techies talking. And now it’s getting into a phase where you know, we might, Jim, I don’t know if you would agree, we’ve always talked about how we were really early phase one. Maybe we’re starting to get into a little bit of phase two. I don’t know Edward, what what do you think on that if you had to put phases behind it? Have we progressed to a new phase now with when you think of stories, like Libra and things like that?
Edward Weniger [1:09:26]
I mean, that’s, that’s,
Mike Wieger [1:09:27]
we’re just phase three, was there an early phase, I’m middle run, and then now we’re a little bit more into the corporate world.
Edward Weniger [1:09:35]
I mean, you think of the the hype cycle, right, the up and down of the early adopters, and you’ve got you know, I mean, that’s, it’s certainly in line with that, but then that starts to repeat itself. Right. So you got something, try this again. So you got the then you got the bigger adoption, then you got the bigger adoption. And so as far as which bubble or which pump we’re on like, I don’t know that specifically. But I mean, you could certainly see it ramping up as time goes on. And I think the will hopefully follow and as user adoption does and whatever cryptocurrency it is, so yeah, I mean, I don’t have an exact phase, but yes, we are seeing continued growth overall.
Jim Collison [1:10:13]
When do we stop mining crypto, or when do we stop mining Bitcoin? When? 2121 40?
So 20 more years?
Edward Weniger [1:10:21]
Jim Collison [1:10:22]
Yeah. Oh, 100 and 20 years? Okay. So that’s, that’s kind of a moot point on that one. Okay. Well, I, I, I like talking about it. And and Edward, like I said, I appreciate you coming on and do it. Do you want to hang through the post show? Or do we need to let you go?
Edward Weniger [1:10:39]
I do have to go. But yeah, we I mean, to your point, I guess. And as a way of checking out we did. I think we hit 5000 Bitcoin ATMs around the world. So that was good. Wow. And we’re actually seeing some Bitcoin integration or cryptocurrency integration more with the traditional eight teams as well.
Jim Collison [1:11:02]
But so yeah, if you’re, how many do you guys have?
Edward Weniger [1:11:05]
We just said, Well, we have seven, technically, we have two that people actually.
So I’m fixing that. So
Mike Wieger [1:11:16]
I’m in your basement, and you’re just like plugging them in all.
Edward Weniger [1:11:20]
The other one. They just don’t have. It’s a different user interface. And so people are too hard. And so I’m hopefully going to be able to fix that in the next couple ones here. And people actually use the other ones. But yeah, go to John’s brothers or the mill and the Haymarket and Lincoln and buy some crypto there from us. So anybody in Nebraska have one final question. How does Nebraska How does the State of Nebraska feel about cryptocurrency?
Jim Collison [1:11:47]
They are on the spot does I get
Edward Weniger [1:11:50]
I’m actually meeting with them on Monday. They are very, they they’re great. They’re not very public about it’s interesting, because in the Libra conversation with it was with either within it was an interview, I think that Facebook Libra guy did, talking about the South Dakota Department of banking, what he was like giving them props for being so easy to work with and accepting of what they were doing. Because somebody one of the companies that they were working with, or Libra itself or something like that, opened up their banking relationships in South Dakota or something along those lines. and South Dakota, which was a surprise to me, because South Dakota typically in Iowa, both are typically not that great to work with from a crypto standpoint. But Nebraska has been great to work with they’re very understanding they want to learn they want to use it or really, you know, they want to encourage you so they should use I should say. So Nebraska, they’re not very public about it. Like there’s not a whole bunch of companies moving here to start their crypto businesses, right. They like that.
Nebraska would welcome them with open arms. I think so. Yeah.
Jim Collison [1:13:05]
Cool. That’s good to know, to know if you’re, if you’re free, Edward, if you’re again, if you’re free tomorrow night, in the evening, I’ll ping you to make sure I’m there but to have some cigars. So if you wanna, if you want to swing guy, it’s a long trip for you. But thanks for coming on tonight. I appreciate it. All right. Thank you guys. Thanks, Edward. Good seeing you, man. I appreciate it. All right. Another successful crypto review. I think, like there’s some actually some teeth to this now. Like, it’s not just a pipe dream, like, you know, even a year ago are like, well, who’s using it? Well, nobody, at least you can kind of say like Facebook, right? We’re in, right?
Mike Wieger [1:13:41]
That’s what I mean. Right? Like, we’re kind of in that next phase that you and I always talked about getting ready for. And I think we’re in for a fun ride. At least, you know, even if you just like you said follow the news cycle, you write the news about this stuff. It’s going to be it’s going to be fun.
Jim Collison [1:13:56]
Yeah, I would say to your point I’d say this is the third round so the first one was those early that it went up in spite some I had family members they got involved in Bitcoin at that point, one of them paid off his house with what he made out of this. So made some on that first run second run is where we got involved in right to 20 that the 20 peak and then down then I think this is three dot o and this is kind of recovery more realistic. expectations. I think the money that’s in it is is money to stay for a while. It just it’s volatile, but it’s not as volatile. is is it’s been at we still have a problem because everybody follows Bitcoin, like all the prices followed Bitcoin bitcoins up, everybody’s up, bitcoins down, everybody’s down. Yeah, that doesn’t make any sense. Like that’s dumb. That’s not a good financial market. So yeah,
Mike Wieger [1:14:48]
no one’s doing the individual research on them on a market wide basis. No one’s doing the research and writing and selling often it’s a whole up or down of cryptocurrency total. But I think there is a reason to do I think what you said is, sadly, it’s not that way. If you compare it to the stock market, where each the stocks, yes, they do rise and fall together, but there’s also they all do their own thing.
Jim Collison [1:15:13]
Mike Wieger [1:15:15]
there’s fundamental Yeah, exactly. argument is just nothing to base a cryptocurrency, like what news you’re going to go off of like, well, they stole the same model. I don’t, it’s just belief, right? How much do you believe in that models? There’s no, it’s not a business. It doesn’t have any news to go off of, right? It’s like 1000 companies, and nobody’s made a profit yet.
Jim Collison [1:15:34]
Yeah. Right. Nobody knows who’s gonna be the first one to make it. Exactly. Yeah. Yep. And this is an unprecedented and I mentioned this, you know, in the in the late 90s, there’s all these companies, Toys R Us and Amazon and shop calm and a whole bunch of these, right? That were trying to do this retail model. And there were hundreds of them. And it’s maybe too bit too many 50s of them, maybe, at least here in the United States, and nobody knew who’s gonna win. We’re giving away free I’m every week to get $10 coupons like, like, spend 30 get 10 at Christmas time old is like the only people still doing that. I know, right on Well, I’m old bucks. We spent those like crazy during that time, or we’re financially, you know, those were those were some lean years for us. And so yeah, we were all in on that. But it was pretty common to think I had we had bought Christmas gifts from five different retailers in those days. Now. It’s they’d all be Amazon, right? For the most part, right? Yeah.
Mike Wieger [1:16:31]
And you brought up a good point, it’s even hard to try and shop local now, even if you want to, like I needed a power cord, and an antenna cable and an antenna for a ham radio. And I was like, Where do I even go? There’s like nothing, no local radio shacks
Jim Collison [1:16:47]
Mike Wieger [1:16:49]
on, I went to the hot desert. Really cool. Actually, I had never been there before. This is like a hobby town store up north and actually have a huge race track for RC cars is really cool. And they actually had written really close not exactly what I needed. But that was like the last place that I was even thinking, Amazon, it’s $9 it’s the exact quote I need. And it’s here tomorrow. Okay, or it’s a it’s here tomorrow. Yeah.
Jim Collison [1:17:09]
And they’re making no money, but they are cornering the market on everything. Yeah,
Mike Wieger [1:17:13]
Jim Collison [1:17:14]
Yeah, they already have me. Yeah. Speaking of that next week, you need ham radio, we’re going to talk you’ve gotten into ham radio. So be ready to talk a little bit about that. We’ll spend a little bit of time next week, got a new eco show. And I’ll talk a little bit about how I move some things around here. And just kind of the thinking I’m going to I’ll have some things I want to say on that echo. The auto one. I haven’t gotten that yet, but I got a few things.
Mike Wieger [1:17:39]
I was wondering if you had either because I have still not received it.
Jim Collison [1:17:43]
But I’ve got some thoughts around it. So um, we’ll talk. We’ll talk a little bit about that. So that’s next week, two weeks from now. Aaron Lawrence, and all that stuff. She did you know, she built out that big conversion. It’s super close or Dang. Give us a tour and she get ready to talk about it. Yes. That’s gonna be so that’s gonna be great. That’s the eighth the eighth of August. You want to join us live for that one. Like if there’s if you’re listening now and you don’t normally join us live you’re in your car and you’re like, yeah, or, or it’s if it’s eight weeks from now you missed it. But if it’s not you should come out the eighth August 8 and join us Aaron always does good. There’ll be a week off. I’ll be at podcast movement on the 15th so headed out to Orlando all things podcasting. No sense trying to do a show from there. And then Cody wheat who that’s the name most people don’t know. But Cody does a show called shots of history and it’s all about the history of alcohol. And recently took on a new job with a company that’s got this tech angle on alcohol. And so I thought it’d be fun finally I’ve been I’ve been trying to get him on the show he’s done a very good reason to have one should really good podcaster a good friend and just a good guy. And it’s not that what I love about shots of history is it’s not a podcast of how getting hammered it’s it’s he’s got some great stories interview some great people he talks to like there’s a whole cocktail industry going on right now there’s like a resurgence of cocktails. And there are some really interesting ones that are out there and a whole real like social culture around it and and so Cody will be on on the 20 seconds and we’ll talk a little bit about some of the new tech they’re using in that industry today. So we got some good things coming up a couple reminders don’t forget if you want to support us on Patreon no pressure but if you want to do that the average guy.tv slash Patreon Join us on the discord the average guy.tv slash discord we still have a Facebook group and weird I two people join it this week like I thought it was dead but it’s apparently it’s not facebook.com slash group slash the average guy if you want to join us on there if you want to send me an email Jim at the average guy.tv will get that here. You can follow me on twitter at j Collison at Wieger tech if you want to follow Mike to get that part done. Don’t forget the average guy TV network. Both web and media hosting powerful Maple Grove partners get secure reliable high speed hosting from those that you know and you try plans start as little as $10 a month super reasonable. That’s Christian. head out to Maple Grove partners.com Mike its BBQ season you’ve been even grilling or smoking much Saturday.
Mike Wieger [1:20:14]
me all day I’m doing the whole works doing the ribs. President of pork butt winnings can be to me a good Saturday.
Jim Collison [1:20:22]
Listen, we missed you last week on the on the grill show. It was super good. Mark brought some recipes if you’re listening to this and he didn’t listen to the grill show because you like normally like I don’t want to. I don’t do the grill thing. No, you should go back and listen to it because mark is absolutely magical. I should have said that up front. In the beginning of the show. Mark is absolutely magical. We threw some recipes in the show notes as well as full transcripts are in the show notes now as well. I’m trying this new service otter.ai they seem to fix the problem we had the first week we use them. You only get full transcripts are available out there in the show notes as well. And we’re down to just two couple weeks with my daughter before she goes back and we decrease our Hello Fresh Mike. It is so great to have her she starts every one of those we haven’t halfway going by the time we get there. It’s the perfect excuse to just keep going with it. Oh my god. They’re they have really in a year we’ve been doing this they have really expanded the recipes like even So tonight, we started getting out we have we’re having a big family party on Saturday and we got recipe cards and just started going through what do we want to make? What do we want to make and it was just so easy. So if you’re struggling with things to cook and all and I actually I do I make this not hella fresh related, but I make this roasted corn I think I’ve talked about it before you put it you don’t put in water soaked anything. You just put the corn right on the grill and let the husks basically burn off to the husk that long.
Mike Wieger [1:21:50]
Yeah, literally go that long.
Jim Collison [1:21:52]
They just burn right off and it just allows the smoke and the kind of all that to get into corn. And then I’ve been taking a knife and just slicing that Korn off and I thrown in the cast iron skillet with some bacon bits and butter and some seasonings and it’s a roasted corn. Dude, that by itself, I could eat that just I could just take a spoon and just start. It’s the meal. I just got I just picked up this Pampered Chef corn thing what’s you know, it’s kind of curved, it’s like a corn knife. And you just hold it and off the kernels come. So that’s coming. And super, super awesome. also figured out I was watching Facebook, because that’s all I do. And if I cut the end of the corn off and throw it on the grill, when I when the husks are all gone, I won’t have all that stringy you know sometimes you know you get some of that so I have to try that as well. So hopefully you’re having a good you and everyone else listening is having a good summer or winter I guess if you’re down under maybe you’re doing winter grilling, and if you didn’t catch last week’s episode a lot of good stuff and a lot of good ideas in there as well. We are
Mike Wieger [1:23:02]
alive or quick. Have you seen the watermelon slicer? You’re talking about the corn sizer? There’s a watermelon one where it’s got like a rotating blade that has a bunch of like you know think of a thing like a pinwheel almost. And you run it along and it just perfectly like sends out like he checks all these cubes of watermelon she’s got whoop whoop and it just like cubes of watermelon you start shooting out and I’m like that is the coolest thing now I some people said that’s actually longer than what they can cut a watermelon in. I don’t know I’m really slow at cutting watermelon. So you have the thing and then you just run this along it and it just I don’t know I was I was intrigued. It was a it was a Facebook video Cool.
Jim Collison [1:23:42]
Cool. I just noticed that a whole conversation about the chat room we did
Mike Wieger [1:23:47]
yeah, we were me and Justin I think so far I think Justin might be one of the only ones in the group that is into ham but if that if you are into ham let me know before next week maybe jumping and discord throw out there if you are a new just so I know I know the interest level of if you guys want to know about it,
Jim Collison [1:24:05]
talk about it anyway. It’ll be fun. We’re going to talk about anyways I’m interested I’m an old CB radio guy so we’ll I’ll have some context when I was in high school I did a lot of CB radio in a kind of like to get back into
Mike Wieger [1:24:17]
oh here we go. Here’s the new ham Jim Here you go you can get you can get the will preface that you can get this for $30 and get into ham and you can at least you can spell the frequencies 30 bucks drive around your car it’s awesome. You like
Jim Collison [1:24:32]
all I need another Joe says just the food ham. We listen we had a long conversation last week about what spam meant.
Mike Wieger [1:24:41]
Jim Collison [1:24:42]
that’s yet to try spam just all throw it on the wall. Now Mark said Mark said he cubes it and wraps it and bacon and smokes it. I’ve heard some bad I’ve just never
Mike Wieger [1:24:53]
had the opportunity to try it. No one I know cooks it well. But I mean, I’ve heard that it tastes great the way you think.
Jim Collison [1:25:00]
VT cheese and some handsome you know bacon and wrapped smoked. Yeah. Hey, I did at the end of the show last week. Last thing and then we’ll quit here. At the end of the show. Last week mark encouraged me I was because I was like, I’ve really been struggling to smoke on my current girl. And he’s like, well, what’s the bottom temperature? And I’m like, I don’t know. He’s like, Okay, take a potato. Stick your stick your your you know I have that that I grill meat thermometer. Just put it on the grill, turn it to low and let it sit there until the temperature evens out. So Sunday night was super nice. So I grabbed a cigar lit a fire in the fireplace, let the cigar put the thing on the grill and I was you know you’re in if you like to cigar you’re in for an hour, right? Yeah, right. So I’m out there and I waited till the till temperature 25. So I can like, Okay, if I can if and that’s indirect eating one side on one side off. It’s a small little spot. But that could be a start for me of getting underway. I can regulate that to 200 degrees. But this put the smoke tuber on the
Mike Wieger [1:26:01]
one you have to be perfect. Then you get a little bit
Jim Collison [1:26:03]
of smoke could yep could change the way I think about smoking on the grill. So I’m Sarah said we’re having the kids over on Saturday. And she’s like, well, maybe we’ll do baby back ribs that she was joking. And I’m like, Oh yeah, I’ll smoke for sure. And it’s just like No, I was just kidding. That’s like why would you care about something?
Mike Wieger [1:26:23]
Yeah, don’t don’t care about that something to joke about.
Jim Collison [1:26:27]
So we are live every Thursday 8pm Central nine Eastern out here theAverageGuy.tv forward slash live or whatever you want to do. No crypto tonight this show so if you’re like Jim one’s a cryptocurrency back well, we’ll talk about what to thank you guys for joining us live we’ll have a little bit of post show with the with that.
Transcribed by https://otter.ai
Transcribed by https://otter.ai
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