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The Almighty Buck Businesses Space

Space Money Invented For Space Tourists 296

Posted by Zonk
from the in-spaaaaaaaaaaaaaaace dept.
An anonymous reader writes "The foreign exchange company Travelex has invented a unit of currency designed to be used in space commerce, the Quasi Universal Intergalactic Denomination (QUID). The QUID is made of a space-qualified plastic, with round edges to prevent injuries in zero gravity. One QUID is equivalent to about 6.25 pounds, 12.50 dollars or 8.68 Euros. Of course, space currencies are already a staple of science fiction, with 'credits' being the most popular."
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Space Money Invented For Space Tourists

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  • Problem? (Score:5, Funny)

    by le0p (932717) * on Friday October 05, 2007 @04:03PM (#20872607)
    Solution: Problem, where are you?
    • Hi, I'm the fact your $20M trip to space only costs one lump sum of $20M. I'm wishing that, in addition, you would be charged in some way for each of your vacuum-sealed meals and packets of Tang. I'm wishing that different modules in the space station and future space hotels would charge admission. I'm wishing there was a way for these goals to be achieved that would cost you outrageous sums of money that you could never get back, even if you didn't use them, yet still seemed to be value-added products and
    • Re:Problem? (Score:5, Funny)

      by Chris Burke (6130) on Friday October 05, 2007 @06:24PM (#20874327) Homepage
      Yeah, no kidding. And besides, I had to read the title like 5 times before I stopped parsing it as "Space MONKEY invented for Space Tourists", and while I didn't know how one "invents" a monkey, I did think this would be a great thing that space tourists would greatly appreciate.

      But just some money? Sounds more like gift shop tokens. If you can't use QUIDs to buy a Space Monkey, then I predict they will fail.
  • Round edges.... (Score:3, Informative)

    by SnoopJeDi (859765) <snoopjedi@@@gmail...com> on Friday October 05, 2007 @04:03PM (#20872609)

    The QUID is made of a space-qualified plastic, with round edges to prevent injuries in zero gravity.


    What the hell is wrong with paper currency? 0g paper-cuts?

    That said, sounds frivolous and unimportant, albeit kind've a cool subject.
    • Re:Round edges.... (Score:4, Insightful)

      by icebrain (944107) on Friday October 05, 2007 @04:06PM (#20872653)
      Paper's flammable (or at least, easier to light than plastic).

      My question is: how do you fight counterfeiters with plastic money? Seems like it would be relatively easy to fake, compared to metal or newer paper currencies?
    • Re:Round edges.... (Score:5, Informative)

      by jimstapleton (999106) on Friday October 05, 2007 @04:07PM (#20872663) Journal
      That's one of his many errors, to my knowledge, I've yet to see a coin with a sharp edge. At least, not in the US.

      What kind of crack is the guy who said coins have sharp edges smoking? Or is their some country where they do have sharp-edged coins.

      Another? Oh, as for credit. There are these things called "bar codes" - believe it or not, they are not magnetic!
      • Not to mention.. where did they get clear Teflon?
      • Re:Round edges.... (Score:4, Insightful)

        by HTH NE1 (675604) on Friday October 05, 2007 @04:45PM (#20873195)
        Coins also are conductive, which could short out electronics if they float into a panel being serviced. They're also more likely to do damage if left floating when the vessel undergoes sudden acceleration whereas plastic can deform more readily.
      • by Red Flayer (890720) on Friday October 05, 2007 @05:07PM (#20873505) Journal

        Or is their some country where they do have sharp-edged coins.
        Well, I always file down the edges of my dimes so that they are razor-sharp.

        This is to "reward" the shoddy customer service I sometimes get at the checkout lane.

        It has the added benefit of putting the offending cashier on disability for a while, so that I don't have to deal with them again for a few weeks until they heal.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by wizardforce (1005805)
        except that in spacecraft, small free-floating objects are choke hazards.
    • Re:Round edges.... (Score:4, Insightful)

      by norminator (784674) on Friday October 05, 2007 @04:51PM (#20873277)

      The QUID is made of a space-qualified plastic, with round edges to prevent injuries in zero gravity.
      What the hell is wrong with paper currency? 0g paper-cuts?

      Actually, why do we need physical money in space at all anyway? Why not just have it be all electronic? Wouldn't this be the true space age, and we're still going to be relying on physical currency? It seems like having your money float away would be more of a problem in 0G than getting cut from sharp edges.
  • local slang (Score:5, Funny)

    by User 956 (568564) on Friday October 05, 2007 @04:05PM (#20872633) Homepage
    One QUID is equivalent to about 6.25 pounds

    So it's 6 quid per QUID? That sounds confusing.
    • I was always partial to "Space Bucks"...

      PIZZA THE HUT!
    • by Greyfox (87712) on Friday October 05, 2007 @04:47PM (#20873231) Homepage Journal
      Yes, but you have to remember that in space a pound has no weight, only mass. So even though it's 6 quid per QUID, it still won't be a pound, much less six. It may still mass 3 kilos, however...
    • by davidsyes (765062)
      Oh, quiddit...

      I was going to suggest quatloos:

      Quasi-Universally-Accepted transaction-logistics-organized ....o-something
    • Ah, you're using Quasi Universal Intergalactic Denomination (QUID).

      Those of us from more civilized galaxies use Quasi Universal Intergalactic Money (QUIM).

      IIRC, last time I was on Eroticon III, Eccentrica Gallumbits was charging around 10,000 QUID per 'session', so it'll cost you around 62,500 quid to get a piece of triple-breated QUIM.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    No sufficiently advanced spacefaring civilisation should be using currency. The presence of currency means the scarcity problem hasn't been solved by the civilisation, which means they are poor primitives not worth the bother of Contacting.
    • by User 956 (568564) on Friday October 05, 2007 @04:07PM (#20872657) Homepage
      The presence of currency means the scarcity problem hasn't been solved by the civilisation, which means they are poor primitives not worth the bother of Contacting.

      And they probably don't have cool matching jumpsuits, either.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      Regardless of what progress is made, then scarcity will ALWAYS be an issue. Even if you can convert energy directly to matter and vica-versa, there will always be a need to assign value to things. The only way money will cease to be useful is if there is no longer any interaction between people.
      • by hitmark (640295)
        most likely, energy will become the baseline for currency.

        or in other words, anything will be valued for its energy potential.

        dont tell me noone have played alpha centauri...
        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by DigiShaman (671371)
          Don't forget "Time".

          In the real world, I charge money for my Time and Services. There's more to an economy that just raw resource availability.
    • by Applekid (993327) on Friday October 05, 2007 @04:11PM (#20872725)
      So, in other words...

      1) Solve scarcity
      2) ???
      3) Not profit?

      I'm unsettled by this. Excuse me while go have my lobes stroked.
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      The presence of currency means the scarcity problem hasn't been solved by the civilisation, which means they are poor primitives not worth the bother of Contacting.

      The scarcity problem can never be solved so long as one person has or can create something unique that another person or more than one preson wants.

      That's more of a sign of culture than of poverty.

    • As long as you will die some day, time will always be a commodity with value. You don't always have a trinket I want in exchange for my time so I prefer cash that I can give to someone who has a trinket I feel is worth the time of my life it took to pay for.

      Money is not a sign of poverty. It's a sign of mortality.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by mrjb (547783)
      The presence of currency is not a sign of poverty/scarcity alone. Above all it is a sign of mortality and decay. Time is money- If I work one hour, I get one hour worth of pay. My time is worth something to me because I am mortal- if I would be immortal, I could invest huge amounts of time in learning how to grow all my own vegetables, how to build my own car, how to refine my own fuel etc. But like most people, I don't have enough time in my life to learn all of that, so I take the shortcut: I exchange my
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by hcdejong (561314)
      I'll see your Star Trek-induced optimism, and raise you Greed is eternal
    • by HTH NE1 (675604)

      No sufficiently advanced spacefaring civilisation should be using currency.
      Then how would they bilk the primitive populations of alien planets out of whole continents and mining rights without a bunch of space-beads?
  • Bah. (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday October 05, 2007 @04:05PM (#20872641)
    Everyone knows the only true space money is the Interstellar Kredit. Go go ISK!
  • by torkus (1133985)
    I'll take Lary Niven's Star currency.

    I miss known space.
  • by avij (105924) *
    FTA:

    Each of the orbiting planets will carry a number, like the serial numbers on notes, giving the disc a unique code thus allowing currency to be tracked and helping to prevent counterfeits.

    So.. who's going to start a website for tracking those Quids, like Where's George? [wheresgeorge.com] or EuroBillTracker [eurobilltracker.com]? Might be fun..

    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Culture20 (968837)
      Where was QUID 52379A478B7907E87FEB39C98 today? Earth
      Where was QUID 52379A478B7907E87FEB39C98 yesterday? Earth
      Where was QUID 52379A478B7907E87FEB39C98 the day before? Earth
      .
      .
      .
  • Credits (Score:5, Funny)

    by east coast (590680) on Friday October 05, 2007 @04:10PM (#20872697)
    I sold some slaves to the Lesti system not too long ago for 98.2 credits per tonne. I'm now rated as a fugative and your QUIDs are worthless to me since they're only good in the Sol system.
    • by MROD (101561)
      Surely, you mean Leesti, near Lave?
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Alioth (221270)
      Hi. I'm Officer Murgatroyd of Lave High. Your ship is carrying contraband. Pay a CR600 fine by midnight or your ship will be confiscated.

      [ ] Pay fine
      [ ] CR25 bribe
      [ ] CR50 bribe
      [ ] CR100 bribe
      [x] CR250 bribe
  • QUID? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Otter (3800) on Friday October 05, 2007 @04:11PM (#20872711) Journal
    As long as you have the Q and the U, wouldn't "quatloo" be a more appropriate name?
  • Space-faring folk should go digital; even so, the whole concept is beyond ridiculous being that nobody beyond this planet is actually using this. Just stick with American Express.
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by instagib (879544)
      1. Float in space - 300,000 $
      2. Land on planet - 30,000,000 $
      3. Your oxygen is running out, but your AmEx is not accepted at the nearby refill station - Priceless.
  • by Sporkinum (655143) on Friday October 05, 2007 @04:13PM (#20872749)
    I'll wager 15 quatloos that that QUID will never fly.
    • by vjmurphy (190266)
      How much is that in cubits?
    • Of course the QUID won't fly. At over 6 pounds, it is much too heavy for today's launch vehicles.

      I'm telling you, the only sane space currency is one built on a bubble.

    • by Drathos (1092)
      Sucker bet.. The quid is commonly used in the UK. Has been for some time.
  • by hitchhacker (122525) on Friday October 05, 2007 @04:14PM (#20872757) Homepage
    In fact there are three freely convertible currencies in the Galaxy, but none of them count. The Altarian Dollar has recently collapsed, the Flainian Pobble Bead is only exchangeable for other Flainian Pobble Beads, and the Triganic Pu has its own very special problems. It exchange rate of eight Ningis to one Pu is simple enough, but since Ningi is a triangular rubber coin six thousand eight hundred miles along each side, no one has ever collected enough to own one Pu. Nigis are not negotiable currency, because Galactibanks refuse to deal in fiddling small change. From this basic premise it is very simple to prove that the Galactibanks are also the product of a deranged imagination.

    -metric
  • One QUID is equivalent to about 6.25 pounds...

    Fortunately, when you're in orbit, it won't weigh anything... you'll still have to look out for the inertia though...

  • I can't be the only geek here annoyed by the casual use of intergalactic. We haven't even made one interplanetary trip yet, so interstellar is still far, far away, and intergalactic isn't even in the realm of conceivable projects!
  • Or what about Triganic Pu?

    After all the Galactic Bank doesn't deal in piddling small change.
  • Stupid Tags (Score:5, Funny)

    by pembo13 (770295) on Friday October 05, 2007 @04:18PM (#20872835) Homepage
    Can we remove the tagging system? Or moderate the people who put the idiotic tags?
  • What's the mass? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by reality-bytes (119275) on Friday October 05, 2007 @04:19PM (#20872841) Homepage
    If one of those 'QUIDS' has a mass of 10g and you want to take 10 'quid' with you on 'holiday'.

    That 10 'quid' (worth £62.50), if launced on the STS would cost £240 to get to LEO due to their additional mass.

    Therefore, if you used this new currency, to actually get that money (£62.50) on orbit would cost you over £300 extra.

    Disclaimer: E&OE, YMMV, IANARS, My ability to perform basic mathematics is inversely proportional to the amount of alcohol I have consumed.
    • by geekoid (135745)
      No it wouldn't. In all practical ways you would use the same amount of fuel in either case. Becasue you don't take 'just enough' for what you are lifting.

  • A physical representation of money seems to be a backward idea for space travelers, shouldn't space money be virtual?
  • by syrinx (106469) on Friday October 05, 2007 @04:24PM (#20872923) Homepage
    It's only worthwhile if it's backed by something valuable, such as gold-pressed latinum.
  • It's a concept of sortof-but-not-quite communist Federation. To buy the good stuff, you need to first obtain some hard currency, such as gold-plated latinum.
    • by geekoid (135745)
      Currency does not need to be backed by anything. The users just need to say x amount is worth X in goods. You can create complete currency systems in a vacuum.

      My very firs software job was writing a smart card system. By accident we made it so a bank wasn't needed.

      Your pay went directly on your smart card, and then you could buy stuff with that pay...which that merchant used to pay people. You see the circle.

      Yeah...we got a call from an irate bank owner, and we changed it so only the bank could put credits
  • these idiots think there will be need or even possiblity for anonymous money transactions in the next 50 years in space? In space, everyone will know who you are, because you'll be one of less than a hundred there at an enormous expense! If anything in the range of $0 to $1,000 is bought or sold out there, simple biometric check and existing credit system on earth is sufficient. But really, someone is going to pay hundreds of thousands (if not millions) of USD to go to a "space hotel" and then have to b
  • Hasn't anyone rumbled that this is just a PR exercise for Travelex? Plus I'm sure it's given a little extra spending cash to the academics involved.
  • by kitsunewarlock (971818) on Friday October 05, 2007 @04:26PM (#20872969) Journal
    Psh. I was hoping we could exchange goods and services with things like youtube external links, myspace mass friend invites and wikipedia article additions...

    While I'm at it:

    Spacesuits: $1,200 each.
    Oxygen recharge: $3.22 per gallon.
    Farting in your space suit while you and your cheap-ass buddy share an airtank; priceless.

    There's somethings your national currency can't buy. For everything else, there's QUIDS.
  • Very original... (Score:2, Informative)

    by Piedramente (1063240)
    I believe the term quid already exists for currency http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quid [wikipedia.org] I wonder where they came up with this new space currency??
  • by jellomizer (103300) * on Friday October 05, 2007 @04:28PM (#20872995)
    This reminds me of Flooz an attempt to create a currency for the Internet, as an attempt to cross borders and such.... But the truth is people want their own money either US Dollar, Pound, Euro... They are not going to transfer it for one thing and back again... Especially with those pictures. Heck take paper curancy and put it in your wallet or keep a credit card in your wallet. It is safer there then a bunch of oddly shaped plastic things in your pocket in 0g.
    • by mcmonkey (96054)
      If you had posted this yesterday when I had the points, you'd get a +1 insightful.
  • by Sentry21 (8183) on Friday October 05, 2007 @04:29PM (#20873003) Journal

    Monetary Units: None. In fact there are three freely convertible currencies in the Galaxy, but none of them count. The Altairian Dollar has recently collapsed, the Flainian Pobble Bead is only exchangable for other Flainian Pobble Beads, and the Trigantic Pu has its own very special problems. Its exchange rate of eight Nighis to one Pu is simple enough, but since a Ningi is a triangular rubber coin six thousand eight hundred miles along each side, no one has ever collected enough to own one Pu. Ningis are not negotiable currencies, because the Galactibanks refuse to deal in fiddling small change. From this basic premise it is very simple that Glactibanks are also the products of a deranged imagination.
  • Please, for the love of all things healthy in the Universe, we need to get back to money being denominations of value, not denominations of promises (notes). Whoever does create the de-facto intergalactic standard for currency would be better off convincing people to conduct trade with promises, but the people who use it are much better off with items that translate to real value (just like everyone else today).

  • It is the first currency of its kind in the universe

    What makes you so sure, hmmmm?

  • I don't know what is more funny: The fact that so many people remember what Quatloos are, or that no one has yet mentioned good old Gold Pressed Latinum.

    Also, what they don't take VISA or Matercard up there? I though they took VISA everywhere? Not even Amex? Dinner's Club? Surely it would be more efficient to take ONE piece of plastic up there than a pocket full.

    Plastic Toy Rocket - 12$
    In flight meal - 320$
    Flight Suit - 12,000$
    Rocket Trip - 20,000,000
    Realizing that it doesn't include accommodations on the
  • to create a currency and call it 'intergalactic'
    Sheesh..don't even get me started on their 'Universe Series' baseball.
  • by GrEp (89884)
    Wouldn't grams of oxygen be a little harder currency?
  • The Monopoly board game seems to hold the patent on useless money. Chocolate coins would be more popular I would think.
  • This is so dumb. It costs so much money to move the currency, which is manufactured on Earth, up into space! Although it would be funnier if they looked like poker chips. Could be soft too.

    But if you get a lot of money, you might have a lower chance of survival due to the lost delta-V. Although you could indeed throw the money away from you to build up a vector.

    Everyone knows you need galactic credits, and you can exchange them with digital wallets that verify your identity. Those of course are way too heav
    • by chuck (477)


      But if you get a lot of money, you might have a lower chance of survival due to the lost delta-V. Although you could indeed throw the money away from you to build up a vector.

      And then a whole community of indentured servants will worship you, and sing songs about you, and build a statue!
  • Anybody else felt dyslexic and read Space monkey invented for space tourists?

    Who the hell wants to start a zoo in orbit?
  • What a shame (Score:4, Interesting)

    by John Meacham (1112) on Friday October 05, 2007 @04:40PM (#20873143) Homepage
    They took the time to design a new monetary format and didn't even make it based on a Balanced Ternary [wikipedia.org] system. Balanced ternary cash would be quite nice, it would mean almost always having the exact change, you only need one coin of each denomination to ensure you can make change for any possible transaction among other nice qualities.
  • It'd better have a painting of Lix on it.

  • Did anyone else misread this as Space Monkey Invented For Space Tourists?

    It caused some very strange thoughts about how a Space Monkey would be used.
  • One QUID is equivalent to about 6.25 pounds, 12.50 dollars

    Except in any Travelex the Microsoft Star Empire, the Adobe Quadrant or the iTunes Confederacy where they will sell you a QUID for 12.50 pounds...

    On any British run outer space trading posts we should use the Basic Unit of Cosmological (oh, damn) Kurrency so we can confuse the Americans for a change...

    (Note for USAians: "quid" is fairly universal slang for "1 pound" in the UK so its a bloody stupid name for a new currency. Not to be confused w

  • I found very little info on if these will break down in a solar wind, how long they will last on Mecury or if they are at risk of shattering in the cold temperature of Pluto. Is there any chance of damage in the sandstorms on Mars? From what they are made out of, I would think they may do somewhat OK in minor temperature extremes, but against highly abrasive wind blown dust, I would worry as I know how easy it is to scratch my cookware when I use metal utensils.

The universe seems neither benign nor hostile, merely indifferent. -- Sagan

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