John Mutch writes:
I think this is just another facet of the news from Canada about discontinuing the one cent piece.
The Royal Canadian Mint MintChip Challenge invites software developers to create innovative digital payment applications using MintChip, a R&D phase technology available only to challenge participants. Developers and the public are also encouraged to share ideas for how a digital currency can be used.
Winners will receive approximately $50,000 in gold from the Mint as well as promotional exposure. Prizes will be awarded for the apps that best demonstrate the potential value of the MintChip technology and have the greatest potential impact on digital payment technology. Submitted apps can run on Android, BlackBerry, iOS, Windows or desktop and mobile browsers.
The Mint will provide participating developers with a software developement kit (SDK), two microSD MintChips, and two remote MintChip accounts they can use to integrate the Mint's technology with their digital payment applications.
The public and developers have approximately four months to share ideas and build their submissions. A panel of distinguished judges from the tech, venture capital, media, and retailer industries will select winners, and the general public will vote to identify a "Popular Choice" winner.
I'm not sure what to make of this. There have been (and continue to be) many private companies attempting to fashion a true electronic substitute for coins and paper money. Is this the first time a government entity stepped into the fray? Do they have any better a chance at success? I guess time will tell, but government backing has been one of the key missing ingredients.
To learn more about the MintChip Challenge, see:
The Royal Canadian Mint is challenging software developers to create apps for MintChip, the evolution of currency.
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