[Bitcoin-development] Fwd: [BIP 15] Aliases

Walter Stanish walter at stani.sh
Thu Dec 15 08:26:38 UTC 2011

>> Why don't just...
>> bitcoin://url.without.explicitly.specifying.provider
>> bitcoin://alias@provider
>> bitcoin://IIBAN@authorizedBitcoinInstitution ??

> Andy sounded very convincing when talking in favor of URLs. What's
> wrong with his proposal?

A URI identifies a resource and is in effect an alias itself.
Identifying a resource is different from interacting with it. So,
while <resource-type>://<resource-type-specific-alias> will work
sufficiently for the identification, it does not explain the

Interaction is a requirement, since there seems to be a widely felt
need to preserve anonymity through the use of temporary addresses.
Generating a temporary address requires some actual processing to
achieve, since the issuing of the new address cannot be done without
interacting with the entity hosting the wallet (unless I'm missing

> By the way, I don't like the fact that a single authorized institution
> needs to map the IIBANs to bitcoin addresses.

This is not the case. Please read my earlier response to Gavin and the
IIBAN specification itself to clarify.  That would be a total breach
of privacy since the entity would have access to financial information
on all transactions using the IIBAN identifiers... prior to
transactions being executed.

It *is* true that under the current IIBAN proposal there would be one
entity (IANA) in charge of issuing namespace portions ('institution
codes' - probably best to rename these...), however:
 - The policy is strict and something similar to 'give one out to
anyone except existing financial instutions with the pre-existing
capacity to issue IBAN'.
 - IANA have a pretty reasonable track record
 - This suggestion, like the entire proposal, is open for discussion
and modification.  If you can think of a more efficient and fair way
of assigning namespace prefixes to random entities on the internet
that doesn't require someone *without* an established track record of
doing this for the internet community to take up IANA's place, then
I'd be happy to hear it. Whilst a bitcoin-like 'community consensus'
system is conceivably possible to deploy in its place, I don't think
it's necessary.

Walter Stanish
Payward, Inc.

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