Digital Cash!

KCIS invites you to join us for conference on the past and future of electronic payment.
September 27-28, 2014, Decafe, Perloff Hall, UCLA

Please go here for conference logistics.

Today’s discussions about electronic currency often focus on the obsolescence of traditional institutions such as the federal reserves and credit companies. It’s said that the old world of brick and mortar banks, paper cash, and plastic cards is disappearing – and the future is bitcoins, P2P infrastructures, and e-cash served through dotcom companies and mobile phone carriers.

But we have heard these stories before. Like jet-packs, flying cars and trips to mars, digital cash is a relic of the past and a constantly renewed promise from the future. That’s why this conference gathers together humanities scholars, engineers, and science fiction authors, all focused on the past and future of payment. Together guests will explore the historical legacy of payment systems – from conventional cash and credit, to prototype experiments with digital currency – alongside the speculative representations and explorations of science fiction in novels, film and games. For more details go here.

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The Kleinrock Center for Internet Studies (KCIS), founded in 2011 at the University of California, Los Angeles is a research center, archive, and exhibition space devoted to interdisciplinary study of the internet. With its exhibition space located at the physical site of the first node of the ARPANET – an early foundation for the modern Internet – the Center’s mission is to understand the social, localized, and material history of the internet and to communicate these findings to a broad public.

The Center sees an historical approach to the internet as a critical means to chart its future. We bring together engineers, social scientists, and humanists to tackle difficult questions that demand interdisciplinary responses. Our center is the result of strong cooperation between the Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science, the Division of Humanities and of Social Sciences at UCLA, and our philanthropic partners.