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Image source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/100239928@N08/

Image source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/100239928@N08/

When the fall semester classes start at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) later this year, the student body will be completely composed of bitcoin users. Two MIT students, Dan Elitzer and Jeremy Rubin, have raised around $500,000 in bitcoin for a project designed to create the first campus-wide bitcoin ecosystem at a major American university. Each student at the college will receive around $100 in BTC, courtesy of the MIT Bitcoin Club.

MIT is one of the most respected science and technology colleges in the world, and if there was any place to build an enclave of future-shaping bitcoin users, it would be on the same Cambridge campus that launched countless other technical innovations. The project’s goal is to study how students actually use their bitcoin, and what problems and solutions arise from such a large and concentrated community of tech-savvy people. As CoinDesk explains:

The organizers admit they still don’t know how students will use their bitcoin, but that’s largely the point. The program offers a unique opportunity to study behavior, spending habits, identify potential problems and alternative uses for bitcoin – no strings attached.”

Speaking with CoinDesk, Jeremy Rubin explained the core idea, which is particularly fitting to MIT’s long history with the development of the decentralized data-transmission system we now call “the internet.”

Giving students access to cryptocurrencies is analogous to providing them with internet access at the dawn of the Internet era.”

The project is funded by MIT alumni and the bitcoin community.

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