Edit: removed unnecessary hostility. If you have money to spare on a high risk gamble like this then by all means. But in general there's just no way everyone jumping in is fully aware of the risks.
Crypto mining has been a portion but in no way “most of” the reason NVDA and AMD have risen. Machine learning, AI, and self driving are completely reliant on the products provided by the aforementioned.
I've got friends and colleagues who don't even know how to setup their mobile phone wanting to buy in to BTC. They are actually managing to do it because of the proliferation of new, simple, exchanges. What makes matters worse is they have no idea what a wallet is - leaving everything in the exchange.
Maybe that's part of it. Things seem dire for a lot of folks now (even if they aren't) so a little short-term game or gambling high isn't so bad.
I wish I had the time and motivation to go back over the last 6 years and create a timeline of people making the same tired statements as yourself. The same types of statements were made when it hit 10 dollars.
Well now it takes hundreds of minutes, in which time the value of your bitcoin has changed, given its current volatility.
Technology advances. If you're stuck looking at what is inferior now, you will not see what is possible in the next few years.
You are talking about a technical problem, which can be fixed.
I think people just don't understand that most participants in "Bitcon boom" knows this is a bubble. Every major news outlet says it's a bubble every couple of weeks. This is a common knowledge, everyone are saying it's a bubble.
I know it's a bubble too and I have bitcoins but I don't care that it's a bubble. I am holding BTC from the time it was worth couple of times less when everyone was saying it's a bubble also. Even if it goes down a lot below 10k now I will still make money.
I think a lot of people yelling "you morons don't buy bitcoin!!!1111" need to understand that people are aware of the risk, like they are aware when going to casino that they can lose money and there will be people that will lose their money for sure. The last one in the game takes the highest risk, that's all.
It sounds like you haven't been through a bubble before.
In the dot-com bubble, the losing stocks didn't see their value cut by 3-5x. That was the winning stocks - Amazon lost 93% of its value between 2000 and 2001, EBay lost 75%, Cisco lost 80%. The losers saw it cut to zero. In a very short period of time, too - slower flameouts took a matter of months, quick ones were literally overnight. One day a company would have 3000 employees and be worth $5B, the next day the company would be bankrupt and everyone would be laid off.
I've got a few grand in Bitcoin too (a remnant of the last Bitcoin bubble in 2013 that I never bothered to dispose of), and it's been a fun ride, and it wouldn't surprise me if this is still near the beginning of the Bitcoin bubble and we have a while to go. But please, for the love of god, do not invest money in Bitcoin that you can't afford to lose. Because when bubbles pop, they don't just drop a couple percent or even a couple times. They usually go to zero, and everyone who was burned avoids that asset class for at least the next decade if not for life.
I had bitcoin in 2012 also. I've sold it when it hit 1000$ just before Mt Gox collapsing.
> and it wouldn't surprise me if this is still near the beginning of the Bitcoin bubble and we have a while to go
> But please, for the love of god, do not invest money in Bitcoin that you can't afford to lose.
I also agree here 100%, unfortunately some people bet a lot more, anyway, I can't stop someone from going into casino and betting all they have on red.
People are obviously not capable of understanding risk. Are you serious? You bring up casinos when they are perhaps the best example of how ill-equipped the majority of people are to understand risk and probability.
Two people asked me the other week, "Are we too late?" I said that I didn't think so, but to only risk what they could afford to lose. They bought in around $8k. It's now approaching $15k, two weeks later.
I wrote in my last sentence that they take the highest risk.
> how ill-equipped the majority of people are to understand risk and probability.
If that's true then conclusion would be that democracy/any liberal system is the worst system of them all, because if majority of people do not understand risk and probability they shouldn't be allowed to even vote.
As I already wrote, all the data is there, just turn on the TV and you will hear "it's a bubble". No one is deceiving anyone in saying it's not a bubble in mainstream media.
It has absolutely nothing to do with North Korea. If Koreans want to keep money safe, they can, for example, buy US stocks and bonds. They can buy US Treasuries. Bitcoin they buy out of greed and fear of missing out. Korea is the land of the trend, of bangdwagonning.
I feel bad for all of the people who are going to be burned.
I saw an ad on YouTube, in Korean:
VOICE: How easy is it to make money in Bitcoin?
[Shot of a finger pressing a button. The price goes skyward. Finger presses again to sell, showing screen of juicy profit.]
VOICE: That's how easy it is.
I literally hear random people in coffeeshops and the subway talking about their BTC schemes. I met someone at a coffeeshop and a group of four well-dressed guys at the next table were talking about their bitcoin scheme.
I went back about a week later. A different group at the very same table were chatting about their bitcoin thing. "We know it's not very original, but we're thinking of making a new bitcoin exchange... with a twist... so we're thinking about what the twist should be!"
Go to the unrelated programming meetup, it's half about bitcoin. A few guys are working together. Their project? Something bitcoin. They weren't sure what. But gotta be bitcoin. "I'm gonna make a new cryptocurrency business based on Bitcoin! We're gonna be big boys on the blockchain! Oh, what's Ethereum? I've never heard of it."
When I go online my browser windows are festooned with various bitcoin ads in Korean.
Although quite different, this has a very similar smell to the real estate boom in Los Angeles, when every waiter and wannabe actor and person between jobs was talking about buying their million dollar shack.
That's to say, it smells like doom.
I wouldn't consider US securities to be a safe bet, especially considering risks from US's current political uncertainty. US might even cancel their debt, so US Treasuries might even be considered riskier than bitcoin.
In any case, Koreans can access safe haven assets from around the globe; they don't need bitcoin for that.
In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if, after the rage of a shakeout, bitcoin were at some point banned in South Korea. Online gambling is banned (there are public service announcement ads in the subway against it, showing gamble-a-holics in handcuffs). They might just have to classify bitcoin as gambling. Once there is a large enough group of people angry at losing their money to bitcoin mania, it could happen.
Every asset has some degree of risk. And even something that might be considered somewhat risky might even reduce the risk of a portfolio through diversification if its risk doesn't correlate significatnly with the other assets.
Btw the gov't here has outlawed bitcoin derivatives including futures, and classifies bitcoin as a speculative asset, not a currency or means of exchange. I can easily imagine bitcoin being banned here, if there is a collapse and people get burned.
At the same time the gov't is supportive of new technologies and seeders interested in blockchains.
But there's little doubt that immanent trade in Bitcoin futures is the major driver. From a recent Coindesk article, I get that sellers of futures contracts are hedging in case the price falls. There's no requirement to own Bitcoin for selling futures contracts. But there is the expectation that they will hold Bitcoin at settlement.
So maybe some are buying now, and expect to win big in the futures crash.
Sentiment on HN, Twitter and the financial press is nearly unanimously negative. Co-workers and family members are convinced this will end in tears for the foolish speculators.
But one thing bugs me about all this.
Historically, bubbles burst after long-time critics finally capitulate. Pyramids and Ponzis collapse when most people have bought in and there's nobody left to sell to.
Are there any examples of bubbles bursting when 98% of the population knew it was a bubble in advance?
So the old story about Joe Kennedy and the shoe shine boy applies too? The saying " You know it's time to sell when shoeshine boys give you stock tips. This bull market is over."
If there's something concrete that _causes_ Bitcoin to move majorly, I'd be happy to see that but if I just want to watch the price, I'll look at an actual Bitcoin ticker.
It's impossible to predict. Anyway, I'm investing with a buy & hold philosophy.
"In this video Laolu (co-founder of Lightning Labs) demonstrates a multi-hop payment on Bitcoin's mainnet which travels across the 3 major Lightning implementations. In the demo Laolu (a.k.a roasbeef) sends a payment from our Lightning desktop app (https://github.com/lightninglabs/ligh...) to Starblocks, a coffee payment demo."
"This payment marks the first multi-hop, cross-implementation payment on Bitcoin's mainnet. All transaction performed in the video were performed completely off-chain, instantly, and with virtually zero fees. Lightning allows instant, low-fee payments on Bitcoin, enabling the system to scale further for the next wave of adoption. Additionally, Lightning unlocks a new class of use cases for Bitcoin enabled by the ability to instantly send low-fee payments on the system."
Also, the time to buy is almost never after/during a large boom, heh.
since this is getting downvoted, I will give a simple example... if you have $2 and it goes up 100% (two-fold incease), than you have $4... but if you cash half your money, then you have only $1 invested, and you are stuck with $3 instead of $4 ... and lost 25%. Not sure if my math is 100% right, but if you are betting on value going up, you lost money.
The beliefs of the community will continue to evolve as needed to support the value of their claims on our society's productive capacity.
There is an interesting historical tidbit: Initially Satoshi didn't have a fixed block size limit. That limit was only added after a DDoS attack where absurdly large blocks flooded the network. But that was a temporary fix, and satoshi had said that limit could easily be changed, maybe using some algorithm that increased size based on demand or that gradually increases with time. He had said large blocks is not a concern because network bandwidth increases exponentially. Unfortunately, the early developers did not proactively address the scaling problem, such as by allowing for increasing block sizes, so we are stuck where we are at today. 
Point being, bitcoin could have been a micro-transaction-capable digital cash, and it (or another crypto-currency) still could fix this scaling problem. Not everyone in the community has "evolved their beliefs" about bitcoin (or cryptocurrency in general). I personally feel that bitcoin was and still is experimental, but has simply been a victim of its own success, but that the scaling problems are not insurmountable.
22% surge in a single day.
This is going to end well.
Of course, it could just as likely be $20k tomorrow.
It seems like a crazy surge because of the nature of adoption rates of new tech. It gets faster and faster, radio, tv, internet, google, facebook, bitcoin. The limited supply also throws off our normal convention of stock price valuations that usually have large amounts of shares - often to keep the prices low for trading - but infinite divisibility makes this different from stocks.
I bought because I wanted to help people have a fairer system, and because I believe equity based money to be more sound than debt based money. Many of the people I wanted to help have a hard time believing what is happening (even I do a little), but I'm glad it is. Human nature often conspires against us in these situations, the naive and greedy may come in and benefit from a small investment earlier than the risk averse considered decision maker. The system is intended to help both. When you can see past your fear, envy, disbelief, regret and instead trade it for hope, adventure and magic internet money you may see it as a new fairer way for humanity to bank and not an affront to reality.
Problem is when a "Bitcoin run" (akin to bank run) starts you'll have slow, expensive transactions going down in worth compared to EUR or USD. Plus businesses can decide to stop accept BTC as currency like Steam did today.
And it will burst when Bitfinex bursts due to tether being an exposed fraud. Question is when, not if.
I'm also not really sure what the catalyst of a Bitcoin crash would be, wouldn't it require for the vast majority of people to decide Bitcoin is no longer worth buying ever? As long as the supply of greater fools never runs out, won't there be people around who buy into every dip and keep the price going higher?
I'm still not sure if that guy is lucky or screwed with his Bitcoin investment, but he seems confident it will work out.
Yeah, people thought the same during the tulip mania (something every Dutch kid gets taught at history class in high school ), dotcom bubble, MLM & ponzi schemes. "It can't possibly burst, the amount of fools who buy them are infinite." Of course it isn't infinite, and people are learning about Tether.
Plus, don't forget Bitcoin basically became illegal in China.
> I'm still not sure if that guy is lucky or screwed with his Bitcoin investment, but he seems confident it will work out.
As long as he can spend his Bitcoins, and as long as he does before it bursts, he's OK. Simple fact: if he spends it all now, he spend it with huge profit. I mean, if he can resell the products he buys with Bitcoin at a 10%-20% loss (which is very fair for a new product with receipt/warranty) he's still in on a net ~45-55% profit. Problem is the high transaction costs means people keep sit on their networth.
At some point though the exit strategy is destroyed when companies stop accepting Bitcoin as payment method. You can't exactly fortune tell when but when this happens en masse that's when the momentum of Bitcoin is RIP. Steam recently did, officially because as they put its "volatile" and because the transaction costs are too high (several tens of EUR/USD per transaction). Them saying its "volatile" is a way of expressing disagreement with the coin increasing in worth without being needlessly offensive. At the same time, they don't burn their bridge with Bitcoin altogether. My take is they'll restart with Bitcoin once the bubble bursted and stabilized.
And the reason it will burst is Tether. I'll patiently wait. I'm mid 30s. I got a whole life ahead. Recently bought a hardware wallet. Am I sad I didn't start with Bitcoins earlier? Sure, first of all because I like the concept in combination with a hardware wallet, and there was very little competition and virtually no drama about it (before Mt Gox). Second, I wish I did when it was 200 USD. And I even considered to start with BTC back then. I easily had a few thousand EUR to speculate with. The current stuff though, is irrational, and has the signs of bursting bubble all over it.
Interesting observation, in any case.
but that's only the case if the coin isn't popular. more popularity = more transactions = more competition for block space = higher fees.
If people were keeping track of Satoshis (0.00014 USD/Satoshi) would they also think it is expensive?
To compare, if Bitcoin reaches $400.000 per bitcoin, the total value of all Bicoins will be the same as the total value of all gold.
I wonder if we will still see this kind of crazy rallies as it will be easier to short it.
No one in their right mind is going to short bitcoin unless they want to risk losing their shirts.
So let me take the opposite side and say congrats to everyone who's hodling bitcoin!