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Re: Question on use of base64 vs base64url in modern specifications

From: Dmitri Zagidulin <dzagidulin@gmail.com>
Date: Sun, 26 Apr 2020 14:22:09 -0400
Message-ID: <CANnQ-L5HFupxkWzAQ4=6FU1yX7jGX14cc39MKxLNB0FMK4=RqQ@mail.gmail.com>
To: Orie Steele <orie@transmute.industries>, "W3C Credentials CG (Public List)" <public-credentials@w3.org>
>
> IMO, saying it's "multicodec / multibase" is about a billion times better
> than saying "its base64 / base58".
>

Absolutely agree there. Multicodec and multibase are, I think, a must, in
terms of clarity, future-proofing, and so on.

I do want to say something about the merits of base58 for all key
representations and anything DID-related. Also, I agree with your 3 layer
approach. Except that to me, 3rd layer is not optional.

> Layer 3 represents why i dislike base58... who cares if "I" and "l" look
similar...

We care. We *all* care, eventually. Because despite all of our best actions
to prevent humans from ever dealing with raw key material or DIDs (and we
*should* do our best to prevent that, it should always be mediated by
convenient software)... there WILL come a point where you're typing in your
key or DID or whatever, from backup. You WILL be reading that gobbledygook
string to your uncle over the phone. Yes, those cases will be exceedingly
rare. But when they do happen, you will be intensely glad that you can tell
a lowercase L from an uppercase i.
Received on Sunday, 26 April 2020 18:22:33 UTC

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