I share your sentiment but it's unfortunate this is the way the world has progressed.
People get hold of land when it's cheap, then a city is built around it. These landowners may have helped a bit to develop the city over generations, but ultimately it's the many other people who choose to come to the city and settled down that make the city a good place to live, and the land valuable. Early land owners reap the benefits of the increased economic activity on the land they own, then they become rich and powerful.
Up to a less peaceful level, wealth and power disparity induce revolution, but after every revolution the society is just reshuffled and new self-serving elites pop up the same way they did before. But over history, the lives of people are improving, and the world becomes a teenie bit fairer. Bitcoin may just be like that; it's all the same crap but overall it's a big change that might promise a better world.
I personally hope Bitcoin would fail but the many better versions of it would succeed, so that there is a better likelihood that things would turn out "fair".
1) Bitcoin can migrate to new crypto algorithms. The process may not be easy, but there should be enough time to buffer.
2) Eletronic cash systems do not offer anything close to the vision promised by decentralized cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin.
For 2), it is important to note that the "use of real currency" is far from immaterial. These real cash still have to pass through banks, and it is still ultimately a currency over which a central bank and by extension its government has full control, exactly the thing Bitcoin was trying to avoid. They can use "anything", but before Bitcoin this "anything" would also have been something controlled by a central authority, which in Mondo's case would be Mastercard.
There are many things to worry about Bitcoin, such as failing to properly maintain true decentralization, but some of your concerns aren't valid.
Many people are simply not so much exposed to these events / competitions, but still go on to become better students at undergraduate level and beyond.
They bring out talent from high school students, but at that point it is still far, far from real innovation. The problem setters and mentors are often university students anyway. These things encourage students to go beyond their high-school curriculum and think cleverly, so they have some great skills to use in industrial or academic settings. They are capable of entering the workforce, capable of joining and growing new businesses, but there is nothing special about their ability to "innovate". They still have a lot to learn, and in terms of cleverness there are many, many comparable university graduates out here.
Inventing really new things require some luck, and unless you're extremely lucky it would require extensive exploration. One page of new mathematics requires lots of thinking and learning. Even a prodigy like Erik Demaine spent 6 years on his PhD. Being smart doesn't mean you can always create something new - new, valid ideas are so scarce and hard to reach, and there is immense competition, so you still need to work hard for a long time to actually produce the results.
For any Playstation 4 household with more than one TV I think the PS Vita TV will become a 'must-have' accessory; it's almost like getting a second PS4 for $100.'"
Can you still call it a killer app if it could only fill the intersection of three niches?
On a related note, I wonder if they will try to force VAT (Value Added Tax) on bitcoin transactions?
Once they place Bitcoin on an appropriate place in the law books, I don't see any reason they won't. It's mostly as easy as taxing "normal" transactions.
Don't mod parent down so much that it disappears. It must stay and be exposed to ridicule. It serves as a blatant example for why people should at least RTFS before posting, and also why this ruling is important - there is an entire rotten culture to be cleared up around unpaid internships, and this ruling is a start.
You shall be ashamed to patronize people for so little that you repay them for their labor. It should also be quite clear the ruling does not apply to unpaid internships that actually have real educational value to the student (it's written right there FFS). Free labor for grunt work is simply abuse; both of students and regular employees. If we let people take these internship positions because "it looks good on their CV" or any other crap like that, it is a race down to the bottom of no benefit to the society.
Goodbye to those kind of internships? If a job like that is lost, we really lose nothing. Paid internships and unpaid meaningful work are unaffected. If a student has to do meritless free labor to gain credits, then the college is equally guilty. The student may as well be jobless, and find a better way to learn something of value - the student pays the opportunity cost, so you have nothing to patronize them about. Everyone doing worthless internships is worse than nobody doing internships, except for the pockets of those abusive employers.