A Japanese-American who is a graduate of a US university is one of the first to accept bitcoin, the virtual currency that allows people to exchange cash for digital goods and services.
Joseph Burchfield, a 22-year-old medical student, received an invitation from the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) to join a research project at the university.
“I was like, ‘Oh my god, I want to do this,’ and I thought, ‘I can’t go anywhere else.
This is amazing,'” he said.
He and his fellow researchers are working on a study to determine whether using bitcoin as a payment method will enhance their research, and if so, what it will be used for.
Bitcoin is a digital currency that is created and stored on computers using computer software that is encrypted.
Its price fluctuates and has soared since it was launched in 2009 by an anonymous developer.
Burchfield said the research project will focus on the development of the blockchain, a public ledger that records transactions and information that could enable companies to pay their staff with bitcoin.
The blockchain is based on a distributed database of millions of bitcoin transactions.
Transactions can be confirmed using a computer program that stores the cryptographic key needed to sign them.
It can be used to verify transactions and provide a public record of how much money has been paid to the parties involved.
While the blockchain has raised some questions among the general public about its reliability, its creator, Gavin Andresen, believes it is more secure than competing systems, such as those developed by Microsoft Corp and Facebook Inc. “This is a very big deal, because the blockchain is not public,” he told Reuters news agency.
It is also difficult to counterfeit because there is no central authority that verifies the legitimacy of transactions, Andresin said.
“It’s a completely decentralized system,” he said, referring to bitcoin.
“If the government wants to, they can come after us and steal our bitcoin.”
The researchers have started a crowdfunding campaign to raise funds to develop a blockchain system that can verify and verify transactions.
They plan to begin using bitcoin for payments in the near future.
The goal is to develop software to be able to record and verify every bitcoin transaction.
The money raised through the campaign will also be used in the research, Burchford said.
“When you are dealing with digital currencies, there is a whole new level of risk,” he added.
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