Jump to content
Bitcoin Foundation

Recommended Posts

IntoTheFog    2

I feel this is getting increasingly important from an advocacy/marketing perspective. People have a hard time grokking the concept of nominal valuations. For example, I run into people all the time who consider litecoin 'cheap' and bitcoin 'expensive'. I see no reason why the foundation couldn't come up with and publish some suggested names for sub-units.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Alex Amsel    9

Credit is probably the least friendly thing I hear mentioned. It's just... ugh. Both meaningless and with too much meaning.

 

Whatever is chosen has to work at the Satoshi level or we need two things (or one of them is a Satoshi). milli(bit) would probably be fine but it could also be out of date horribly quickly.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Todd Erickson    212

If the ISO standard has been finalized as XBT, then I support simply changing the original default values to XBT, mXBT and uXBT as milli's and mikes.

 

and YES we should do it sooner than later.

 

I guess I am still stuck on the fact that every one of my clients already have mBTC and uBTC and that seems to meet all of the needs of division so why are any more needed? (if you dont like .001 BTC then goto 10 mBTC...so easy)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Ivan Manida    21

mBTC and uBTC are defacto standards, but that does not mean they are good standards. Easy to confuse the letters, hard to name / pronounce, and many people would not know which is which. And if we ever need to subdivide further, all the kBTC etc are just unacceptably complicated, having all information about denomination stored in only one letter while repeating the other three is a very inelegant representation

 

What is wrong with having only two units, whole Coins and partial Bits, only it won't be 100 bits in a coin, but 100 million bits in a whole coin? Prices in bits, aka satoshis, can be abbreviated using k / m rounding notation if needed, so 1 coin = 100m bits. People are usually much better with large integers than with fractions. And the fact that you will never have to count Bits by hand makes the old convenience habit of dividing money units in 1/100th unnecessary.

 

Whatever we vote for, it has to be something that every reporter in the world can understand and remember; that is a complicated effort, naming must be as simple as possible.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Alex Wice    1

In my opinion, the subunit in common use should be 1,000,000 bits == 1 bitcoin.

 

First, SI notation is the wrong direction.

Milli-, micro-, and nano- all give the impression that what the person has is somehow small in value.

It's also not natural to say in conversation. People prefer saying "cents" instead of "centidollars."

 

Second, seemingly unrelated names do not have a strong enough connection.

For example, a finney or satoshi being commonly said may confuse people as to whether these things are actually bitcoin related.

 

That leaves "bits". Why 1 million instead of 1,000? The extra decimal places makes it so you are dealing with fractions of a bit less often, somewhat like pennies. And 1 million is a nice round number, "nicer" than 10^5 or 10^7 as it is more easily remembered.

 

Finally, while "bit" itself already has a meaning (as a unit of information), I see this as a minor problem, as it would not be ambiguous (mainly because most people do not refer to bits of information.)

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Second, seemingly unrelated names do not have a strong enough connection.

For example, a finney or satoshi being commonly said may confuse people as to whether these things are actually bitcoin related.

 

Every movie franchise or popular computer game has a lingo of about a million words and abbrevations. So yeah, two words with no other possible meaning whatsoever, is REALLY confusing ;)

 

 

Finally, while "bit" itself already has a meaning (as a unit of information), I see this as a minor problem, as it would not be ambiguous (mainly because most people do not refer to bits of information.)

 

https://en.wikipedia...disambiguation

 

A: "How much for a bit?"

B: "Five bits."

A: "Thats a bit too much i think."

B: "No really, it's five bits for a bit."

C: "Cool, i take ten bits then. Here is your two bits."

A: "No, it's five bits for...eh...how about a lager instead?"

 

I know, most people dont drink bitburger. Most people dont talk about drill bits all day either. Still, put together, a dozen possible meanings isnt exactly a minor problem. Maybe a bit of a problem :P

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So far I think that Alec Wice has the best proposal.

1 Million Bits = 1 Bitcoin It's simple and quite intuitive. No new term needed. Most people have no idea what a Bitcoin is , let alone a Satoshi.

The fact that Bit has a number of different meanings in English is irrelevant. Many English words have multiple meanings.

And let's not forget, Bitcoin is a global phenomenon. English is only spoken by a fraction of Bitcoin enthusiasts. If a few percent of English speakers "don't get it" - so what!

The time to act is now. I promote Bitcoin to whoever I interact with and increasingly keep hearing now that Bitcoins are around $ 1000 it is "too late" to get in.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

Once the money managers of Wall Street "get it" cash in previously unheard of volumes will flow into Bitcoin.

Economics 101 teaches that demand and supply determine price. Since Bitcoin is limited in growth by the original algorithm and about half have already been minted to date the supply is tight.

$ 10,000 per Bitcoin is not far away and if the market does not collapse due to unforeseen events $ 100,000 is in sight.

All the more reason for a subdivision.

And Amazon and Pay-Pal may also "get it" one of those days. Just imagine what that would do.

 

My vote is for 1 Million Bits = 1 Bitcoin Let's go!

 

My 5 cents worth...

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

1 bitcoin = 1million bits

 

it was never important to me that new terms would be used for bitcoin sub-units. i had believed the world would take care of it itself. and it might just do it, creating many names for different bitcoin sub-units.

i was, and am a milli supporter, it makes sense, it comes from the metric system and it is near a 1 dollar point at the present.

 

BUT then i was running the word bit in my head for the past two days, and for me, milli, as straight forward and sensible as it is does not paint a coherent picture as the bitcoin = million bits.

it took me these couple of days to realize, it just makes perfect intuitive sense to me…

finally i realize why a bitcoin is called a bitcoin, it's a coin made of a million bits, it's also the name of the currency… (i know this is not the case right now, but it make such perfect sense that I would of believed it if i was told so). so a 100 satoshi make 1 bit, again, perfect sense here too… all we have done is move the decimal point as far as mainstream wants to move it.

i don't care what devisions are used in the meantime, and i don't care if a division will come much later then needed… but i do believe a bitcoin should be viewed as 1 million bits. it takes the whole system to a 2 decimal point system that is intuitive to people to use. satoshis are like cents and bits are like dollars.

in the future people might say '...why do we call it bitcoin? because that's how it works under the hood, bits are grouped into 1 million and this is how they are denominated in the blockchain, it's more efficient to calculate them this way.'

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Kyle Jerviss    35

I have two questions.

 

1. Why does anyone think that they get to decide now what other people are going to call things?

2. Why do people keep creating new copies of this ancient thread over and over again?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Kyle Jerviss    35
Because we don't have an answer yet. Why else do people continue to ask questions about stuff? Should we stop talking about whether or not there is a god just because we have been asking that question for a couple thousand years?

 

Funny that you should pick that example. Nothing new has been said about that topic for 500 years either. They at least have the advantage that their corpus is not all in one place. Around here, it isn't even a matter of (not) searching for similar threads. They are right here on the front page, so the problem is people not scrolling down a couple of lines.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think we don't have an answer yet because the question is premature. I offer a product online, had it all priced in relationship to a Bitcoin at $200 USD. Unless I want to try to get 6 times more for my product now than then I need to change my prices. Regardless of how many decimals, or what anyone calls it, the bottom line is that evrywhere on the planet buyers and sellers have to do a currency conversion for each and every transaction. In other words, I live in the US and want to know what it costs me in dollars simply so I can put it in perspective with other offerings. Bitcoin doesn't exist in a vaccuum. It will need to convert to local currency for a long time.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think this is an important issue. But how can we name these units without international input? It would be best to have a world standard name for these. For all I know calling a unit a "hal" could be very inappropriate in Hungarian.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Jon Aparo    3

The trick to making the rest of the world calling a bit is to have the major exchanges calling it so and selling it so. If they all call it a bit, the rest of the people will also. The exchanges are where people trade bitcoins for dollars, taiwan dollars, dinars or whatever. You need to get MtGox, Coinbase, BTC-Europe, BTC-China, Bitpay and everyone else, Or at least, the businesses associated with the foundation. I will start calling a bit as a starting point, if that is what is decided, even though I like credit or Finney, or some other choice words (mostly during the Sunday price dip). It starts with people seeing it and accepting it. I understand the term milli and micro, but it gets confusing to us Americans with a poor metric education. It is also good to work with a number way below the current dollar level. Suddenly we don't have people saying, $1200 is too much to get started.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think this is an important issue. But how can we name these units without international input? It would be best to have a world standard name for these. For all I know calling a unit a "hal" could be very inappropriate in Hungarian.

 

I think the word is too short and has problematic letters. If i had someone only speaking german write down hearing native speakers in english, french, spanish, russian say "Hal" it would look like this: "Hell", "Aal", "All", "Chal". I can't even begin to guess how the chinese version would look like. It is a bad word when you have little context and little language skills. "Finney", "Bit" and "Millie and Mike" are all better regarding that problem.

Even though i still think the latter three would make even the uninspired bureaucrats that named the euro wonder if aesthetics are really that subjective ;)

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is definitely an important issue that will become more prominent as the value of Bitcoin grows and more official businesses and financial institutions work to integrate it with legacy systems. This is also something that will need to be established as soon as possible to ensure that standards are set and understood before the next wave of growth so that global businesses, ecommerce solutions and financial institutions have a shared denomination system that is easily understood, marketable to the masses and future proof. Whilst there are several names starting to be used for smaller denominations they signify small amounts,which they are unlikely to be be if/when Bitcoin gains mainstream acceptance, and do not easily fall into commonly used systems of measurement putting them at risk of confusion and dilution to the point where they are no longer significant.

 

I have created a mini-site with a first draft of my proposals for open discussion and would love to hear your feedback or suggestions: http://bitcoindenominations.org/

 

Also posted copy below for those that don't like clicking out...

 

 

This site has been created to assist in establishing and promotion an sensible and universal set of denominations for the Bitcoin digital currency. The basis of the current denomination proposals has been based on functional integration with existing monetary systems and internationally accepted data inspired labelling in recognition of the digital nature of the currency.

Decimal vs. non-decimal

A
decimal currency
is a currency where the ratio between the main unit and the subunit is an integral
power
of 10.
Non-decimal currencies
are now rare. In theory, two countries currently use non-decimal currency: Mauritania (1 ouguiya = 5 khoums) and Madagascar (1
ariary
= 5 iraimbilanja). In practice, however, the value of the main unit in each case is so low (less than 1/1000 of a United States dollar) that the sub-unit is not of any practical use and is rarely seen in circulation.

 

For a modern financial system based in mathematical algorithms it makes sense to adhere to the decimal standard that also happens to be used by almost every currency in the world.

Choice of name

 

 

 

It is common to name a unit with a
unit of weight
, such as
pound
,
lira
, and
baht
. In most cases, these currencies were originally defined as that amount of some
precious metal
. Another choice of name is some form of derivative of the political entity. The
Afghan afghani
and European
euro
fall into this category. Sometimes the name is simply the name of the metal of which the coins were or are made, such as
Polish złoty
(“golden”) and
Vietnamese đồng
(“copper”), or its geographical origin, e.g. Joachimsthaler (see
Dollar
).

 

Following this rational it makes sense to base the currency in Bits which are the base digital unit within most data systems and allows for standard international naming conventions and SI prefixes to represent intermediary steps in between significant units.

BTC vs. XBT

 

Whilst BTC is commonly used to refer to the currency by its users it is not always used to represent an actual unit of value within the currency system. At the same time XBT is becoming recognised by significant money market players (e.g. Bloomberg, XE.com etc) and there is a push for its adoption as an ISO 4217 country code. Therefore it would make sense when establishing internationally accepted denominations to use the XBT code to fully integrate Bitcoin with existing financial systems and make a clear distinction for the newly accepted denominations and avoid confusion with existing common names and nicknames.

Proposed Bitcoin Denominations

 

Bitcoin-Denominations.png

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Brian Goss    554

The idea to use the Satoshi as the starting point for SI prefixes is new to me. There is a certain simplicity in this; I'm not sure if 100 kXBT ends up being simpler than 1 mBTC...and having 1 mBTC != 1 mXBT is confusing; should we use M for mega and m for milli?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The idea to use the Satoshi as the starting point for SI prefixes is new to me. There is a certain simplicity in this; I'm not sure if 100 kXBT ends up being simpler than 1 mBTC...and having 1 mBTC != 1 mXBT is confusing; should we use M for mega and m for milli?

 

 

These are the exact kind of discussions that need to happen but unfortunately aren't. In an ideal world the milli wouldn't be in use yet but in reality it is. I looked to see if there was a way to use the MegaBit in a scale that correlated with existing milli but it just didn't sit well which is why I propose a clear distinction for the new denominations of XBT. Once this standard becomes commonplace the milli should lose relevance and whilst there is no harm in referring to it that way it would not be a standard denomination but rather a nickname amongst the early adopters if they decide to use it within P2P transactions.

 

Whilst kXBT may be no simpler than mBTC as a single denomination point it brings clarity and an appropriate base to the entire scale. It also future proofs the scale for the long term as the infinitely divisible nature of Bitcoin is often touted as a feature however shifting the scale now provides a meaningful, attractive and recognisable scale for the mainstream adoption whilst allowing for lower subunits to emerge that fit into the existing measurement system at a much later date if required. With the possibility of $100,000 per Bitcoin valuations already being floated when the mainstream take up hasn't even fully begun the prospect of a $1 = 1 KiloBit or whatever it turns out to is a lot more workable than counting down from fractions of a Bitcoin and would maintain rational values to deal with microtransactions rather than having to make words up.

 

It is important to remember that even thought we have seen massive growth already, if Bitcoin is to really go mainstream the value will rise and making these kind of changes will become significantly harder, riskier and not too mention more expensive. We want to make this as easy as possible for people to adopt whilst avoiding creating any of our own "Millenium Bugs" where logic simply fails at a certain point.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Dan Plante    147

People will adapt if they're confronted with the fact that they they have to adapt. Then they will grok the concept of "how many dollars worth of Bitcoin do I want to buy". This "problem" will take care of itself. I suggest y'all apply your time and energy to more pressing issues.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
KRR    14

I just wanted to share a post I found from Satoshi Nakamoto himself on this topic. Or at least, i think it is related to this topic? Someone can correct me if I'm wrong. Here was his suggestion:

 

"Eventually at most only 21 million coins for 6.8 billion people in the world if it really gets huge. But don't worry, there are another 6 decimal places that aren't shown, for a total of 8 decimal places internally. It shows 1.00 but internally it's 1.00000000. If there's massive deflation in the future, the software could show more decimal places. If it gets tiresome working with small numbers, we could change where the display shows the decimal point. Same amount of money, just different convention for where the ","'s and "."'s go. e.g. moving the decimal place 3 places would mean if you had 1.00000 before, now it shows it as 1,000.00."

https://bitcointalk....4.msg267#msg267

 

Kevin

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

×