Well, this ain’t no Federation baby. Unlike the world of Star Trek, where money isn’t much of an issue for your average Star Fleet officer, money is an issue in our world. And soon to be off our world, as well. In one of those bizarre, possibly pointless moves, some scientists have created a currency fit for space. Paper bills and metal coins just won’t work. If a metal coin develops a jagged edge, that could be deadly in space. Plus, ever try counting dimes in a spacesuit while the Galactic Burger King drive-thru guy looks at you impatiently? Never again, says I!
Rather than using paper, which isn’t durable, or metal, which isn’t safe, or credit cards, which have magnetic strips that may interfere with certain electronics (or be destroyed by the solar wind), scientists have settled on using polytetrafluoroethylene, aka teflon. This currency was developed by a group funded by Travelex, a currency exchange firm. The name is a bit grandiose and nauseating at the same time: QUIDs. Quasi Universal Intergalactic Denomination. A single QUID will be worth about $12.50 US (£6.25, €8.68). So despite being a bit of a pun, it’s also just plain overstretching. Intergalactic? Not unless we develop FTL (faster than light) drives sometime this eon.
Besides being a load of hype, there could be an actual application for this currency. If Virgin Galactic gets off the ground (or one of the other contenders), and space tourism becomes a real thing, these chips will come in handy. And I propose we nickname them chips. How sci-fi that would be.