Why venture capitalists are right to be crazy about Bitcoin

  @FortuneMagazine February 6, 2014: 7:10 AM ET
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(Fortune)

Bitcoin is controversial. Some people believe that it's the future of money, destined to relegate dollars, euros, and yen to the dustbin of history (along with German marks and shiny pebbles). Others argue that it's nerd delusion, carelessly elevating new software over time-tested economics. It's sliced bread vs. New Coke.

Unfortunately, this debate is focused on the wrong thing. Bitcoin's primary significance is not about whether it supplants cash. It's about a revolutionary computer-science breakthrough that has the potential to upend all sorts of established industries.

Here's an analogy: Email was the Internet's original application, but 40 years later we all recognize that the Internet has countless more uses than just the electronic exchange of text. Likewise, currency is Bitcoin's original application, but Bitcoin will not ultimately be defined by currency.

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