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The End of Money: From Cell Phones to Superdollars, a Globetrotting Search…
by David Wolman
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0306818833, Hardcover)Amazon Best Books of the Month, February 2012: Say good-bye to your beloved Benjamins, because the world is going cashless. So says David Wolman, and in The End of Money, he explores the drastic implications. How is it happening? What's at stake? Why does it matter? Each chapter of this timely and fascinating book focuses on a specific aspect of the coming cashlessness. Its cast of compelling characters includes an end-times fundamentalist who views the growing obsolescence of cash as a sign of the coming rapture; an Icelandic artist whose claim to fame illustrates the complicated relationship between cash and nationalism; an American libertarian and coin-maker convicted on federal charges for the distribution of "Liberty" coins and Ron Paul dollars; and an Indian software engineer (self-billed as "the assassin of cash") whose firm is enabling digital payment methods that are lifting the living standards of thousands of poor New Dehli residents via their cell phones. Raising the stakes with a personal experiment, Wolman goes (almost) a full year without using cash at all. All told, The End of Money offers everything there is to love about popular nonfiction, rendering a complex subject entertaining and easily approachable for a wide audience while proving the ultimate adventurousness inherent in a curiosity about the workings of the world. --Jason Kirk
(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:53:45 -0400)
"The age of paper dollars and metal coins is coming to a close. In The End of Money, David Wolman introduces the people, technologies, and trends powering this shakeup, taking us to hotspots of the cashless revolution. He zooms from the cash-strapped slums of Delhi, to the tech-obsessed streets of Tokyo, to London to hobnob with digital cash gurus. Then it's on to Reykjavik, where Icelanders are about to kill their national currency; Washington, to learn about high-tech counterfeiting; and Los Angeles, where scientists study our brains on cash. Along the way, Wolman examines the implications of next-generation payment innovations, investigates alternative and virtual currencies, and showcases the boon in mobile-phone banking. As cash gets pushed toward extinction, now is the time to explore its effect on our wallets and our lives"--"The End of Money is the story of hard currency--its history, conflicts, champions, detractors, and eventual demise. As the role of bills and coins in our everyday lives and in the economy lessens, real money is becoming not merely an abstraction, but an abstraction of an abstraction. What will an increasingly cashless future mean for society, and for the people whose careers are linked to the production, management, and collection of hard currency? This is their story, but it is also our story--because the fate of real money impacts all of our wallets"--
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