Teppy writes "How's this for a disruptive technology? Bitcoin is a peer-to-peer, network-based digital currency with no central bank, and no transaction fees. Using a proof-of-work concept, nodes burn CPU cycles searching for bundles of coins, broadcasting their findings to the network. Analysis of energy usage indicates that the market value of Bitcoins is already above the value of the energy needed to generate them, indicating healthy demand. The community is hopeful the currency will remain outside the reach of any government."
Here are the FAQ
, a paper describing Bitcoin in more technical detail
(PDF), and the Wikipedia article
. Note: a commercial service called BitCoin Ltd., in pre-alpha at bitcoin.com, bears no relation to the open source digital currency.