Bitcoin, Signal and leung cha: The top entries from our latest Brain Game winner

  • This term’s champion is Melody Ma Jing-mao, 15, from Carmel Pak U Secondary School
  • Take a look at her three best entries from this round of the competition!
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Congratulations to our latest Brain Game winner!

How would you explain bitcoin to an 80-year-old?

Granny: Hey little fellah, what’s Bitcoin? I’ve heard so many people talking about it.

Me: It’s a digital currency like Apple Pay which you cannot feel, touch, or place in your wallet. It exists in the computer, and is not controlled by banks or other organisations.

Granny: Not controlled by anything? On the computer? When thieves steal your Bitcoin, no one will be able to help you! If your laptop is stolen or broken, no one’s gonna help you! You’re going to lose everything!

Me: Calm down, Granny. Actually, the information about who owns Bitcoin is stored in multiple locations on a computer network, so everyone can verify it. And no one can claim to own Bitcoin that they don’t really own. So, even if your computer is stolen or it malfunctions, you don’t need to panic about the coins flying away.

Granny: This is what I want to know. Is it easy to make money with Bitcoin? I heard that a Bitcoin is worth about US$58,000!

Me: Erm … I can’t tell if Bitcoin is riskier than stocks or other types of investments, but this volatility can also make it more profitable. With Bitcoin, you could become a billionaire, or go bankrupt overnight. It’s quite dangerous, honestly.

Granny: Seriously? Oh dear, how do you know so much about Bitcoin? Are you going to buy some? I’m telling you ... you’d better not!

We don't totally understand Bitcoin either, so this was helpful.

What would Signal say to MeWe?

Signal: People aren’t satisfied with changing the privacy rules, they’ll leave WhatsApp and come to me. I’ll take his place soon, my big day is coming!!!

MeWe: Don’t celebrate too early. I’ll replace Facebook and do the same thing that Facebook did on WhatsApp, acquire you.

Signal: Never.

Have you tried Signal yet?

If you can make one example of Hong Kong cultural heritage last forever, what would it be and why?

Herbal tea, or leung cha. When my grandparents were young, many flats did not have air conditioners or TVs.

Tea shops would install a TV to attract customers. Many people would go in to buy a herbal tea, then hang around to watch television.

But today we all have TVs at home so fewer people visit tea shops. Also, some are put off by its bitter taste.

I really hope we can preserve this cultural icon, which some say can help cure a cold or sore throat.

Brain Game is a writing competition which challenges you to write creatively on hot topics. Each week, the selected group of entrants is given a question to answer. The answers are published on Wednesday and readers vote for their fave. You can be as witty and imaginative with your answer as you think will appeal to other readers!

If you want to apply for Brain Game, you can sign up here.

Deadline for applications: midnight, April 28. Open to all secondary school students in Hong Kong.