Here, Have Some Money...

I love Bitcoin. It's not a secret; I've written about Bitcoin mining and cryptocurrency in the past. I'm the first to admit, however, that we're at the very beginning of the cryptocurrency age. Although it's becoming easier and easier to use Bitcoin (see http://www.coinbase.com, for example), the limited use cases combined with the wild volatility of price make Bitcoin the wild wild west of the financial world.

There are a few awesome ideas, however, that are brilliant in their simplicity. Certainly things like the Humble Bundle folks integrating Bitcoin purchasing and Overstock.com allowing Bitcoin purchases are great first steps. Those are really just re-inventing the wheel, however, because we already can buy things using existing forms of currency.

Enter ChangeTip.

Sending someone a tip or donation on the Internet generally has been done with something like PayPal. That's all well and good, but it's fairly cumbersome. The folks at changetip.com have made sending money over the Internet extremely simple, and fun!

With its integration into Twitter, Facebook, GitHub, Google+, YouTube, Reddit and more, ChangeTip makes sending money as simple as sending a Tweet. Thanks to the world of OAUTH, you don't even need to create an account on ChangeTip.com to claim or send funds. If you send money to people who don't have accounts, they simply sign in to ChangeTip via the social-media account from which you sent it to them, and the money will be there waiting for them. Oh, and the money? It's Bitcoin!

With its seamless integration to Coinbase, ChangeTip makes actual financial transactions secure, simple, and did I mention simple? Check it out today at http://changetip.com, or visit my personal page at shawnp0wers.tip.me. And, if you want incentive to try it out, I originally planned to include a bunch of "one-time links" in this article that could be claimed for $1 each. It turns out that the one-time links expire after a week. So although it might have been a great April Fool's joke, I really want to give everyone a chance to claim some tips, so keep reading!

On April 1st, 2015, watch my personal Twitter account (@shawnp0wers), and I'll tweet out some ChangeTip URLs worth actual money. Be the first to click the link, and you will be the proud owner of $1 from yours truly. I'll try to spread out the tweets throughout the day, so don't worry if you're reading this after work. It probably won't be too late!

Due to its awesome use of cryptocurrency and social media, along with the ease of use and ability to give money to folks who read my article, this month's Editors' Choice award goes to ChangeTip. Let's change the world!

(Note: I'm not asking for tips! I know many of you are really kind and generous, so I want to make it perfectly clear that posting the link to my ChangeTip page isn't my way of asking for tips. It's just so you can see how simple ChangeTip is to use!)

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Shawn Powers is a Linux Journal Associate Editor. You might find him on IRC, Twitter, or training IT pros at CBT Nuggets.