true. it's more of a "proof of concept" than a thought experiment.
In the past 24 hours:
There have been at least 25,000 nodes participating:
There has been over 10,000 transactions that occurred:
There have been two new currency exchanges launched (and at least one more coming this week):
There have been over a dozen additions to the Trade page:
A proof of concept's purpose is to verify that some concept or theory that has the potential of being used. Bitcoin left that stage months and months ago. This is no longer a proof of concept. Bitcoin is the real deal.
As a distributed computing project its computing power is bigger than the combined power of the top 500 supercomputers out there (all 500 combined)
If Bitcoin were a "startup" it would be labeled as the fastest growing startup in 2011.
There are people working aggressively to improve Bitcoin's core, to build entensions and serve niches. That doesn't happen with a proof of concept, nonetheless with an experiment.