W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-credentials@w3.org > April 2020

Re: Use of Base58 in technical specifications

From: David I. Lehn <dil@lehn.org>
Date: Fri, 24 Apr 2020 16:13:19 -0400
Message-ID: <CADcbRRMHS+mQLPJ=XqU75WaHhbjmF-0-mYXXE92DebvhGiMhJQ@mail.gmail.com>
To: Orie Steele <orie@transmute.industries>
Cc: Christopher Allen <ChristopherA@lifewithalacrity.com>, Credentials Community Group <public-credentials@w3.org>
We extracted that forge code into a standalone package:
https://github.com/digitalbazaar/base58-universal/
<https://github.com/digitalbazaar/base58-universal/blob/master/baseN.js>

As far as character sets and naming, multibase just has "base58flickr" and
"base58btc":
https://github.com/multiformats/multibase

-dave


On Fri, Apr 24, 2020 at 3:59 PM Orie Steele <orie@transmute.industries>
wrote:

> My experience with base58 is that it doesn't actually refer to a specific
> encoding... See:
>
> - https://tools.ietf.org/html/draft-msporny-base58-01
> - https://github.com/tuupola/base58#character-sets
>
> The last one has the sad truth... base58 is a family, not a specific
> encoding name...
>
> I usually hear base58 from people who mean to say: "Base 58 with the
> Bitcoin Alphabet"...
>
>
> https://github.com/digitalbazaar/forge/blob/dd5d972b1cc6faf225afda3fc04093bd93cad16a/lib/util.js#L1569
>
> If you want to never be misinterpreted, never use the term "base58"
> without saying "with the bitcoin alphabet" :) ... but it's likely that when
> you hear base58, you can assume "with the bitcoin alphabet".
>
> OS
>
> On Fri, Apr 24, 2020 at 2:43 PM Christopher Allen <
> ChristopherA@lifewithalacrity.com> wrote:
>
>> I'm trying to get an understanding of the use of base58 and base58check
>> in technical specifications (not standards), in particular, how broad the
>> usage is of bae58 in the non-IETF/W3C standards based blockchain
>> communities.
>>
>> Base58 similar to Base64 but has been modified to avoid both
>> non-alphanumeric characters and letters which might look ambiguous when
>> printed. Base58 achieves 73% efficiency. Like Base64URL, it avoids conflict
>> with URI reserved characters, but it doesn't seem to say anything about
>> forbidding line-break characters (but I've never seen linebreaks in a
>> base58).
>>
>> It has been argued: "We reject Base58 and Base58Check (for use in a URI)
>> due to their lack of widespread adoption."
>>
>> But just because the IETF and W3C standards communities this is true,
>> isn't necessarily a sufficient argument that it lacks "widespread
>> adoption".
>>
>> — Christopher Allen
>>
>
>
> --
> *ORIE STEELE*
> Chief Technical Officer
> www.transmute.industries
>
> <https://www.transmute.industries>
>
Received on Friday, 24 April 2020 20:13:43 UTC

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.4.0 : Thursday, 24 March 2022 20:24:58 UTC