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Printable Money

Be your own mint!
  (+12, -6)
(+12, -6)
  [vote for,

With the advent of e-stamps and PB meters at home, why not print your own money? Imagine paying someone with legal tender with YOUR picture on it, your kids, whatever! You simple login to the US Mint and "download" a set amount of "credit" (paid for with a credit card). Now, just print your money on any color inkjet or laser printer. The money would have a unique code embedded in it that retailers could simple scan when they accept it.
Darkstar, Apr 28 2000

Cash Printer---Print Your Own Money Now! http://www.abc-ware.com/cashprinter.htm
[Ander, Oct 18 2007]


       You know, some banks have ``personal money'' accounts, where you get a little book of ``money'' you can use to pay retailers. These days you can often print this ``money'' yourself, and in any case you can order a wide variety of ``designer'' checks, er, bills...   

       Presumably you imagined that (unlike checks) the currency so printed would be transferable. Dunno if I want a wallet full of other peoples' ideas of ``distinctive'' currency.   

       I would like to not have to visit an ATM (or pay the $1.50!) ever again, though.
egnor, Apr 28 2000

       However, if bills printed on home computers with low res printers become expected, conterfeiting would become more common and virtually undetectable. The problem with the unique barcode idea is that there would have to be an over-arching system to track every bill's location and watch for duplicates. That, and every private citicen would have to carry a code scanner to be sure of a bill's legitimacy.
dontthink, May 10 2000

       As dontthink says, a universally accessible duplicate tracking system is a sine qua non. This is quite feasible. Retail outlets would have barcode scanners built into the till. Individuals would have a scanner on their mobile phone.   

       Caveat Vendor.
Mickey the Fish, Jul 14 2000

       Existing cheques are designed to be hard to duplicate, forge or modify, and so could not be printed on a domestic printer. You would surrender that advantage with this system.   

       If you implemented a scanner on each till to check the validity of each piece of paper (and presumeably kept track of who it belonged to) you would effectively have either a cash-substitute smartcard (like the Mondex system trialled a few years ago, or the system used in many companies and institutions to pay for meals and photocopying without the use of cash, or the once-popular non-rechargeable phone cards), or a credit or debit card. Except you would have to carry lots of them.
pottedstu, Dec 12 2001

       My solution for this would be thus. You would have to go out and buy specific paper for printing the money but you wouldn't print the money yourself. You would then log onto the website for the <insert coutry here> mint and choose your type of bill. You will then send them an electronci version of the picture you want on your bill. This is then put onto your template and then faxed to you, or e-mailed back for you to print off. The paper would all come perforated for creation of the bills and could have a pre-printed watermark or security strip on it or something.   

       "But what is to prevent some unscrupulous person just saving the picture of their money and printing it off at their desire?" I hear you cry. Well if it was e-mailed to you then the picture would only allow you to open it up via the website and print it off from there. Once the correct amount of money has been transferred then the picture is erased from the website and to obtain more money you will need to take more of from your credit card.   

       If your money is faxed to you then I presume this problem won't occur.
kaz, Dec 12 2001

       I'm not sure if we have the security systems to allow kaz's method. I imagine you could write a fake printer driver that would record everything that was sent to the printer, and store it to play back lots and lots and print the same thing lots and lots. You can do a similar thing to get round audio encryption.   

       But if you're going to have special paper, a slight change and you could be moving into the field of customizable money, where the denominations are stamped on, but you get to draw your own picture of the Queen or George Washington or Eminem or Che or whoever.
pottedstu, Dec 12 2001

       wow I finally made a near feasible suggestion.
kaz, Dec 12 2001

       I want to log on as Elizabeth R and say "baked"
po, Dec 12 2001

       But then people would ask you "Who is Elizabeth R?"
StarChaser, Dec 13 2001

       Shouldn't that be Elizabeth R II, [po]?
GenYus, Apr 05 2004

       I like the idea especially considering that we no longer have money circulating in America. We have ferns. Federal Reserve Notes (a note is a debt instrument) instead of the currency tied to gold like the constitution requires. It would be acceptable tender because it has value based upon the store scanning and verifying it. So I as an individual without a scanner would only accept such a note from a trusted store with a scanner. Darkstar's money would be a lot more trustworthy than ferns since ferns are being counterfeited everyday by somebody and ferns don't go through a verification process of any kind until several hundred transactions. Darkstar currency would have intrinsic value because it could be "collectible". Imagine getting a bill made by Mel Gibson or some other celebrity. It's value would be far greater than it's perceived face value.
Willie333, Sep 29 2005

       Who missed the "like stamps" there are methods of a secure scannable printed stamp, and UPS label, so money shouldn't be too hard to deal with. Your ID could be attached to an encrypted code that proprietary scanners could access.   

       Phone scanners could transmit the scanned info and obtain verification.   

       In India, phones are being used to distribute gov't funds, social security and interpersonal transactions.
subflower, Nov 17 2005

       What's to prevent someone from selling several copies of a single note to different individuals? According to their scanners, they would all be valid.
Aq_Bi, Nov 17 2005

       I was going to post an idea for PersonalATM.com which would work exactly like Stamps.com -- but I see it is essentially the same as what you have posted here already. [+]
figmeant, May 27 2007

       Would a Cindy Crawford $10 be worth more than a Scooter Libby $10?
nuclear hobo, May 27 2007

       To me it would.
normzone, May 27 2007

       This would work if it was a one-time-use barcode with 100's of digits with an expiration date that you set when you print the money (no special paper needed). For added security cashiers must match up a physical ID with the feedback that comes from the bank after they scan the bill.   

       Then again, I don't know why this is any better than using a card at checkout unless it's a way to force you to keep within a budget.
davea0511, Oct 17 2007


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