[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]
Re: IMP (was Re: ecash-info (fwd))
Oh boy. Now I'm in for it... I *really* didn't mean to put the ball through
the window, mister, I was just trying to play....
Tim May said,
>David Chaum's work is of course central to Cypherpunks...
[Agree to all up to this point \|/]
>IMP-interest folks had an especially naive view, for the most part
>(based on posts I saw and things I heard from participants). I wished
>them well, but it seemed unlikely that a group of such hobbyists could
>build a real digicash system while avoiding Chaum's work!
>> implicit in it was a sort of top-down-plan idea that was incongruous with
>> the do-it-first ethic of the internet. Cypherpunks write code, or Chaum
>> does, anyway ;-).
>Even with the smiley, are you implying Cypherpunks don't actually
[I think the ball goes through the window about here...]
I *really* didn't mean that at all. I did not *even* mean to "cast
asparagus" on your collective efforts. *Really*.
What I meant is that Chaum seemed to be making the implicit claim that he
had gone out and done something a whole lot of people around here seem to
have been hoping for for a long time: an Internet Mercantile Protocol.
*Not* a Kerberos-based Billing Server, *Not* anonymous credit cards, *Not*
a coffee-klatch at a BOF session somewhere, but a real way for people to do
cash transactions on the internet.
I think of Chaum as the 900 lb gorilla in all of this. Chaum is really
(because he owns the patents, after all) the only guy who could do
something here. I am _happy_ that he and his folks have kicked the snowball
down the hill. In my enthusiasm, I was applauding Chaum for doing something
whose time has come; I was *not* saying anything about the efforts of the
people on this list. If I gave that impression I *really* apologize.
Now the other stuff...
>> Could we talk about IMP here?
>Digital cash is discussed here often. And every one of the various
>"digital money" schemes announced by folks has--I think--been forwared
>here and discussed. In my view, Cypherpunks have talked a lot more
>about Internet Mercantile Protocols than the IMP-interest list has
>talked about crypto (an absolutely core technology, of course).
Having read the roasted-over imp-archives on thumper at belcore, I agree.
I was making the request in light of the fact that you folks have worked
over this ground before. I was asking your indulgence more than anything
>> 1.) Chaum's e-cash coupled with WWW/Mosaic is a de facto internet
>> mercantile protocol.
>Hardly. Maybe it will be in the future, but enough infrastructure
>pieces are lacking that it can hardly be called a "de facto internet
>(Cf. the soda archives for a "Glossary" and various articles on
This is the main point of my posting, I believe. It seems to me that more
than that is being claimed by Chaum and Co.
>Of course crypto and true digital cash is central....this is our whole
Violent agreement here...
>You may be new to the list, but Magic Money/Tacky have been discussed
>as recently as last week. And ftp sites have been listed. Also, within
>the last week there were several discussions of making the schemes
>more "usable by the masses." (Having said this, MM is _not_ an easily
>usable, readily-convertible currency or even a payment xfer system for
>real currency...again, see the many posts on this.)
I agree. I just started learning about all this stuff in the last three
months or so. But, I've been lurking here since. I have been paying
attention. Honest. I've been trying to do my homework. I've pulled
everything down out of Nexis/Lexis that I could find on Internet Commerce
and Digital Cash, Chaum, Eric, the Cypherpunks group (not you in
particular, I'm afraid ;-)). Hell, I've even read Schneier, though for the
life of me I couldn't discuss 10% of the technical stuff and keep a
straight face (for pretending like I knew what I was talking about, in
>> Just a second. My flame-suit is around here somewhere... OK. Flame on.
Putting this thing on has drawn more fire than it kept off of me. I better
keep it off.
>I don't think of my comments as flamish, but the comments here seem to
>bespeak no awareness of the heavy focus Cypherpunks has had on digital
>cash for a long time.
Here's where I wish eudora had a "say what I mean" feature... Again my
>That we have not "deployed" digital cash is
>related to many factors, including patents, lack of financial
>incentive (Chaum's folks have spent perhaps 10-20 man-years and
>several million dollars, and Chaum holds key patents...it is hard to
>imagine any of us competing head on...and make no mistake about it: a
>"Pretty Good Digital Cash" scheme would, on the whole, be a much
>larger project than PGP was), etc.
I suppose my point was that Chaum seems to be seeing what is happening out
there, (CommerceNet) and has decided he can make things happen by opening
up things a little bit. I applaud this. I was egging him on. I was *not*
trying to get my tail-feathers fried.
My analysis may be simplistic, but when Digicash Inc. says this:
>Payment from any personal computer to any other workstation, over
>email or Internet, has been demonstrated for the first time, using
>electronic cash technology.
I figure that somebody acted. Somebody wrote code. Is it shipping? I have a
product I'm dying to sell this way right now.
Maybe I should wait a day before I post when I get excited about
something... As it is, I feel like Garth and/or Wayne. "I'm not worthy!,
I'm not worthy!" I really didn't want get into it with Tim May of all
How many lawns do I have to mow to pay for the window, mister? ;-).
Robert Hettinga ([email protected]) "There is no difference between someone
Shipwright Development Corporation who eats too little and sees Heaven and
44 Farquhar Street someone who drinks too much and sees
Boston, MA 02331 USA snakes." -- Bertrand Russell