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Author Topic: Services with APIs allowing delivery to email addresses?  (Read 1075 times)
edmundedgar
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August 24, 2012, 12:44:44 AM
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I'm working on a Bitcoin module for the OpenSim virtual world server, which I'm doing by re-purposing a module originally designed for PayPal. One thing you can do with the PayPal version is to send money to an email address even if the user doesn't have a PayPal account yet. PayPal will then hang onto the money and send the user an email inviting them to come and claim it. I need this feature because OpenSim does user-to-user micro-transactions, where everyone is a potential vendor, so realistically I can't expect everyone to have a bunch of Bitcoin addresses on file.

I found a service called Coinapult ( http://coinapult.com/ ) that seems to do the same thing (API to create a Bitcoin address, pay money to that address and the user gets an email to collect.) It has a really nice web UI, but it needs an API key, and I can't get a response from them to my email asking for one. My module is designed to be run by virtual world hosts with minimal faffing, so I can't really make them contact some rather odd-looking site then wait around for an API key.

Ideally I'd set this thing up with a few different services in case one falls over.

Features I need are:
1) API call to create a Bitcoin address for an email address.
2) When paid, the owner of the email address gets an email telling them where they can get their money.

Features I'd like but don't absolutely need are:
1) Public API, without needing a key. (I don't really see why Coinapult make you sign up for one, as even if you could come up with a working business model that used them for spam you could just make a script to hit their regular web UI...)
2) Customizable email.
3) Ability to specify an address to send the money to if it isn't claimed after x days. (Coinapult return to sender after 1 month, but it would be better if I could choose this myself.)

This seems like the kind of thing e-wallet providers would want to provide - do any of them do it? If not it seems a bit embarrassing to be out-featured by PayPal...
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Gareth Nelson
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August 24, 2012, 01:16:44 AM
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I used to be one of the core opensim devs and happen to have a service (BitInstant) that can do precisely this - please email me and we can work on it together - I was thinking of getting an opensim bitcoin module together anyway.

gareth@bitinstant.com
edmundedgar
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August 24, 2012, 02:08:10 AM
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Sounds good, emailed you.
edmundedgar
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August 29, 2012, 12:27:48 PM
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So it turned out that Bitinstant don't do email -> Bitcoin themselves - they just have an API call for accessing the Coinapult service that I tried to use before, and the Coinapult guys seem to have dozed off.

Does nobody else do it, and is nobody else planning to? If you're running a wallet service and want new customers it seems like an easy win...
DigitalHermit
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August 29, 2012, 04:33:02 PM
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So it turned out that Bitinstant don't do email -> Bitcoin themselves - they just have an API call for accessing the Coinapult service that I tried to use before, and the Coinapult guys seem to have dozed off.

Does nobody else do it, and is nobody else planning to? If you're running a wallet service and want new customers it seems like an easy win...

Have you looked at coinbase? They have a new API that might do some of what you want.

https://coinbase.com/api/doc
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August 29, 2012, 10:45:29 PM
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Thanks DigitalHermit, that looks promising.

It looks like I'd need two calls, one to create a user account and another to generate an address for them, but that should be OK.
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