ONLINE PAYMENT FIRM Paypal is working with the SETI Institute on currency that can be used for space commerce.
Who knows what is wrong with real money for commerce? As far as we know people are not trading in space, and no one has ever asked for change for a Martian dollar. Paypal and SETI are hoping to solve this problem before it appears with the launch of Paypal Galactic.
"As space tourism programs are opening space travel to 'the rest of us' this drives questions about the commercialization of space. We are launching Paypal Galactic, in conjunction with leaders in the scientific community, to increase public awareness of the important questions that need to be addressed," said Paypal president David Marcus.
"We may not answer these questions today or even this year, but one thing is clear, we won't be using cash in space. Paypal has already pushed payments into the internet, onto phones and across terrestrial borders. We look forward to pushing payments from our world to the next, and beyond."
Someone who might know something about inter-terrestrial spending is Buzz Aldrin, because if anyone has been close to a papershop in space it's him.
He was on hand to talk about the possibilities offered by Paypal Galactic. "Trips to Mars, the moon, even orbit will require we provide astronauts and astro-tourists with as many comforts from home as possible, including how to pay each other," said Aldrin.
"Whether it's paying a bill, even helping a family member on Earth, we'll need access to money. I think humans will reach Mars, and I would like to see it happen in my lifetime. When that happens I won't be surprised if people use Paypal Galactic for the little things and the big ones."
Paypal is leading the project, and wants to bring people together to talk about how best to roll out an intergalactic currency that people can use to buy a newspaper on Mars.
We'll hover back to this one in a couple of years. µ
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