I've been rather quiet lately, but it doesn't mean I haven't been busy.
When I introduced myself the first time I mentioned that one of my clients is a major developer of POS terminals and that their desire to have a bitcoin enabled payment system to offer to retailers was one of the things that lead me into the bitcoin world in the first place.
The good news is that my one of my proposals was finally accepted and in the next 12 months you will see real merchants (large retail establishments) accepting BTC directly at point of sale.
This will not be a closed system. Over the course of the next few weeks/months I will be releasing the specs, reference implementations etc under a completely open license with the hopes that the community will tear it apart and point out any flaws that may be present so we can fix it together.
If anyone is interested in helping me get the docs into a publish ready state I would be glad for the help, just PM me and I'll send them along. Otherwise I will be publishing the full spec in July and the reference software in August. The only thing making it take that long is that I have to do all the work myself, the more help I get on this release the faster I can make it happen.
Just an FYI, this was developed to be decentralized, no centralized organization will be in control and I've tried my best to make it scam proof as well. The system doesn't require the involvement of a third party, and should work with most existing POS hardware that takes VISA or MasterCard. I fully expect multiple implementations to spring from this and ask that we all work to ensure interop since lack of interop is the only thing I can see that could break this.
See you soon!