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Author Topic: BTCANS-- Payment Address Shortner/Account Associator  (Read 1093 times)
rlh
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July 19, 2011, 02:48:56 AM
 #1

BTCANS.org - The Bitcoin Address Naming System

I've created a new site that provides a service similar to an address shortening system but with a few more features.

The concept is simple.  First sign up for an account, select a simple, short account ID and post a bitcoin payment address to your account.

Anyone can query your payment address by entering http://q.btcans.org/[your user id] into their browser.

I created this service for a few reasons.  First, if you wanted to send a payment to someone you know, you can always find their most current payment address by querying their user ID.  It's quick and easy.

Additionally, web sites that offer payouts can also cache user's BTCANS ID's.  When it is time to send their users payouts they can requery the BTCANS to obtain their most recent addresses.  

This also makes it easier for payment recipients. Recipients no longer have to worry about updating multiple web sites with new bitcoin payment addresses because payout sites that use the BTCANS will always have a way of obtaining a user's most current address.  

Quick Details
  • Home - For more information.
  • Create an Account - Start here if your are ready to use this service.
  • Updating your address is instantaneous.
  • Users can optionally enter Verification Text.  When the BTCANS is queried, your payment address will be followed by a colon and your verification text.  The Verification Text is not mandatory but is recommended and adds a simple layer of security, allowing you to verify that you have entered the correct BTCANS ID.
  • The BTCANS is published to the Google App Engine for scalability and reliability.
  • Web sites that would like to integrate user BTCAN IDs for future payments can do so free of charge and without worry that we will ever be charged. Querying the BTCANS will always be free.
  • Referral System Added! (Jul-23-2011)
  • If you have any questions, or run into any bugs, please send an email to contact@btcans.org.  I will respond as quickly as possible.

Web Site Owners
If you would like to start using the BTCANS, all you have to do is send a web request to the query address.  The data outlined above is returned in a clear-text response and will always start with the user's bitcoin address.  If there is verification text associated with the users account, it will appear after a colon following the bitcoin address.

The query response has been designed so that it is easy for websites to consume.  Although it is encouraged that you cache your user's BTCANS addresses, you can start using the BTCANS by writing simple Javascript widgets that your users can use to quickly obtain their payment addresses and populate in an address field.  This will save them a few steps from having to look up their address, adding it to their clipboard and pasting it in an address field.

Please help us out!
If you have any suggestions or if you find any bugs in the application, please send an email to the contact address above.  Also, feel free to post your questions here.  I will responds as quickly as possible.

Also, spread the word to other bitcoin users and if you use any service that offers bitcoin payouts to begin using the BTCANS with their services.

NEW REFERRAL SYSTEM
In the near future I am planning on offering merchant services.  These services will allow merchants to acquire BTCANS IDs short term IDs that they can use for processing payments.  Merchant services will not be free but will be reasonably priced.  If you refer a merchant, referral payments will be automatically sent to your bitcoin payment address.  Since the final details of the merchant system haven't been finalized, I can't explicitly outline the referral payout details.  I can say that I am planning on being rather generous.

If you want to start referring members, you can use the referral link on your account page or just add the query string ?refid=your_id to the end of any link to our site.  Once the user creates an account, you will receive the referral bonus for any services they purchase.

Thanks community!  I hope you all find the BTCANS to be considerably useful!


A Personal Quote on BTT from 2011:
"I'd be willing to make a moderate "investment" if the value of the BTC went below $2.00.  Otherwise I'll just have to live with my 5 BTC and be happy. :/"  ...sigh.  If only I knew.
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jojkaart
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July 20, 2011, 09:27:51 PM
 #2

Looks like a nice site but... why is this needed? Why would I want to update the addresses I keep on different websites? The old addresses will keep working as long as I keep the wallet.

Oh, and Python/Django is a nice choice for the framework Smiley
rlh
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July 21, 2011, 04:09:27 PM
 #3

I could think of a couple reasons that this could be useful.

First, if your wallet.dat is stolen or (oops!), your computer crashes and you haven't backed up the wallet.dat file, it would be nice to have one source to update your public address.

Also, considering wide spread adoption, it is easier to share an ID like "john_doe" with people that you know (or even entering it in new sites that use this service) instead of having to copy-and-paste and address from a clipboard.

C&P is easy enough, but let's face it.  We're all impatient and if we can save our selve 5 seconds, we want to do just that.

A Personal Quote on BTT from 2011:
"I'd be willing to make a moderate "investment" if the value of the BTC went below $2.00.  Otherwise I'll just have to live with my 5 BTC and be happy. :/"  ...sigh.  If only I knew.
rlh
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July 21, 2011, 08:01:50 PM
 #4

Referral System Coming Soon

I'll update my original post to reflect these details this evening but I wanted to give everyone quick heads-up that tonight I will be re-publishing the service with a referral system.  At the moment referrals offer no advantage so what's the point? 

I'm glad you asked.  In the future I am planning on monetizing the system by adding merchant services.  A merchant will have the ability to create expirable, short-lived payment IDs.  I'm thinking they will look something like [Merchant ID].[A random, simple english word].  When creating an account User IDs can only contain text and numbers.  This means that on-the-fly merchant IDs for customer payments can be both unique and easily created using the above mechanism.

If a user's payment system (i.e. sites like MyBitcoin or even the Bitcoin client) has integrated the BTCANS system, the user can send a payment to a BTCANS ID instead of to a bitcoin address.

This has tremendous advantages.  User's aren't infallible.  Every now and then we've all attempted to highlight a portion of text and we've missed a character or two.  By using BTCANS IDs, users can be assured that they are acquiring the correct bitcoin payment address.  I'd hate to accidentally send a payment to a non-existent bitcoin address because I missed a character or two of the address.  Such mis-payments may be infrequent but they are bound to happen as the amount of bitcoin-wide payments increase.  The BTCANS adds an additional layer of assurance for users and merchants that such transactions won't occur.

If you refer an account that purchases merchant services in the future, you will get a cut of the service fees. Since I haven't yet figured out how I will charge for the services, I can't say how the referral system will work but I'm planning on being fair.

I'm guessing I'll either give the referrer 100% of the merchants first payment (up to a rather generous limit) or a percentage cut of each merchant purchase.  Either of those referral scenarios is seems reasonable.  I might even let the community decide which method they prefer or implement either scenario and let the referring account decide which they prefer.

So, sign up now and get your account in order.  As stated, I'll update my original post with the referral details and how to generate referral links once I've re-published the application.

Questions, comments or concerns?  Please feel free to post.

A Personal Quote on BTT from 2011:
"I'd be willing to make a moderate "investment" if the value of the BTC went below $2.00.  Otherwise I'll just have to live with my 5 BTC and be happy. :/"  ...sigh.  If only I knew.
jojkaart
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July 21, 2011, 09:14:39 PM
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The addresses do contain a checksum. The checksum is 32bits, so only one mistake every 4,294,967,296 mistakes will end up going through. I'd say you're relatively safe even with regular bitcoin addresses.
rlh
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July 23, 2011, 10:07:00 PM
 #6

A referral system has been added to the BTCANS.  Enjoy!

A Personal Quote on BTT from 2011:
"I'd be willing to make a moderate "investment" if the value of the BTC went below $2.00.  Otherwise I'll just have to live with my 5 BTC and be happy. :/"  ...sigh.  If only I knew.
rlh
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August 05, 2011, 02:33:45 PM
 #7

As you all may be well aware by now, it looks like MyBitcoin is/was either a scam or after some horrible event, the owner(s) decided to close up shop and take what funds others had deposited into their system.

I was a user of MyBitcoin but, fortunately for me I had emptied my account about a week before the site disappeared.  I still have, however, a few Miner payout addresses pointing to my MyBitcoin account, as well, as a few other sites that offer payouts pointing to the old MyBitcion account...

It sure would be nice if there was a system to automatically update all of those accounts, especially the ones that I may have a tough time remembering

</shameless-self-promotion>

A Personal Quote on BTT from 2011:
"I'd be willing to make a moderate "investment" if the value of the BTC went below $2.00.  Otherwise I'll just have to live with my 5 BTC and be happy. :/"  ...sigh.  If only I knew.
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