The real price of Bitcoin in Bolivares Fuertes: BitVen.com

I’ve just released a tool for Venezuelans looking to know what the ACTUAL price of Bitcoin is in Bolivares Fuertes, it’s called BitVen.com

Most price tickers out there don’t know about Venezuela’s currency control reality and they post the Bitcoin price using the Government’s official dollar exchange rate, the problem is, that it’s really hard to access US dollars at that rate because of all the government blocks, this has inevitably lead to a huge USD black market.

BitVen tracks the price of Bitcoin using the current black market rate of the USD in Bolivares fuertes.

The app tells you the price of 1 Bitcoin in USD and VEF when opened, but it’s actually an interactive calculator, you can modify the amounts in any of the currencies and the equivalent value on the other two will be reflected as you type. For english speakers it will be a bit awkward seeing “.” as the thousand separator and “,” as the decimal separator, but this is a product with Spanish speakers in mind.

I made it thinking of my vision on what’s going to happen with Bitcoin in latin america, more specifically Venezuela, a country that actually needs bitcoin but doesn’t really know about it.
We’re currently in the initial phase of Bitcoin adoption, where you need to know what it is, what’s happening around it, and then you need tools like this to understand how the price fluctuates, for Venezuelan’s it’s very different as they have to deal with this dual-exchange situation, and sometimes you can see that even though the price rices for USD, the rise is not linear for BsF, as the price of the USD in the Venezuelan black market can be lower at the time.

I’ll be packaging it into an Android and iOS app as soon as I get the chance.

Technologies used
In case you’re wondering how it’s built, this is actually my first NodeJS app. I built a NodeJS service that fetches the Bitcoin price in USD from BitPay, grabs the USD/VEF price from DolarToday.org and spits out JSON. The page is done with plain HTML/Javascript, no third party libraries used for faster loading.

It was quite interesting working with NodeJS, I milked the s**t out of Javascript’s dynamic features to reuse code, by passing functions as parameters, and it was interesting to think the server interaction with callback after callback, NodeJS development is living in callback land.