quick stab at complex interoperability use case

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David Nicol

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Jan 13, 2012, 9:28:56 PM1/13/12
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None of the real enterprises named below currently offer any of these services but they could. Well, Google provides openIDs now.


Alice prices her beadwork, available in an etsy store, and wants payments in, "husks" which are an internal currency used at the co-op in Omaha where she buys groceries.

Alice identifies herself with an openID URL, called here "Alice's openID" and provided by Google. Etsy credits received payments directly to her account maintained at  omaha.pm.orgOmaha.pm.org is a preferred federation partner with Omaha co-op, the backer of husks.

So much for the vendor.

Bob wants to buy a plant hanger available at Alice's etsy store. He lives in Denver, and doesn't have any husks in his accounts maintained at denverlibrary.org. Instead, he has contractual ownership of some silver blanks kept at sunshinemint.com, which is what he prefers to make online purchases with. These one-ounce blanks are known as "sunshine."

Bob is logged in to etsy with his openID, and has registered that he prefers to see prices expressed in ounces of sunshine silver.

To show Bob Alice's prices (including shipping, which is a separate but similar whole rigamarole with similar details) in silver, etsy has to determine an exchange rate between husks and ounces of sunshine. Etsy requests of the husk mint, what is the current price of husks delivered in one week in sunshine now.  The husk mint either replies with a quote, including minimum/maximum and quote expiration, or a statement that they do not do such exchanges, and a list of what currencies they will accept in exchange for husks. If etsy can't find a conversion path from sunshine to husks, it may query out to an independent brokerage service for a rate, or it may operate its own conversions sideline business.

Bob fills his shopping cart and checks out.

At checkout, he is asked for his source accounting URL which is something like http://denverlibrary.org/ot/members/bob1952.

Now the fun starts.

A temporary identity is created by etsy that will exist for the duration of the purchase contract. This temporary identity accepts the transfer of sunshine from bob and uses that sunshine to purchase a contract for delivery of so many husks into Alice's account in one week and so many fuel credits to UPS immediately, to pay for shipping the plant hanger.

Alice is notified that the sale has occurred and packs the plant hanger for shipping to Bob. UPS picks up the package, delivers it in under a week, Bob informs Etsy that he recieved it on day 4 and it is acceptable, Alice's account gets credited, the temporary contract identity is now useful for record-keeping purposes only.

Identities:
Alice
Bob
Etsy.com, the ascendent small craft marketplace
A temporary contract account-holding identity
Omaha Organics Co-operative Grocery (backers of the Husk)
Sunshine Mint, who really do store silver now, I think they did or do for the Liberty Dollar
Omaha Perl Mongers and Denver Public Library, offering account database services

three OpenIDs: Alice, Bob, the contract

five interoperating silos: Sunshine Mint, Denver Library, Etsy, Omaha.pm, Omaha Co-op. (six counting united parcel service)

Pre-payment setup queries:
etsy queries co-op for price of husks in sunshine.

Payments:
1: bob gives sunshine to etsy
2: etsy gives sunshine to the contract
3: the contract gives sunshine to the co-op
4: the co-op gives husk futures to the contract
5: On notification of delivery, the contract gives the husk futures to Alice (and then archives itself)

and then...

6: Alice exchanges her husk futures for husks today (at very little loss) or waits for them to mature -- either way -- and buys some groceries at the co-op, where she identifies herself to the cashier using some kind of bearer identity tool like a card with a magnetic stripe that instructs the cash register equipment to attempt to debit her husk account maintained at Omaha PM.

Aside from boldly calling the various involved data centers "silos" I hope there's nothing new (except maybe the idea of writing a futures contract for something so small, also pending transactions might not be represented with something that has implementation in common with individuals in other people's visions) in that.

david nicol

David Nicol

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Jan 13, 2012, 9:48:10 PM1/13/12
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Payments:
1: bob gives sunshine to etsy
this involves sunshine's servers.
 
2: etsy gives sunshine to the contract
this does not involves sunshine's servers, as it can be done internally at etsy.
 
3: the contract gives sunshine to the co-op
this involves sunshine's servers.
 
4: the co-op gives husk futures to the contract
this involves the co-ops servers.
 
5: On notification of delivery, the contract gives the husk futures to Alice (and then archives itself)
this involves the co-op's servers.

 and then...

6: Alice exchanges her husk futures for husks today (at very little loss) or waits for them to mature -- either way -- and buys some groceries at the co-op, where she identifies herself to the cashier using some kind of bearer identity tool like a card with a magnetic stripe that instructs the cash register equipment to attempt to debit her husk account maintained at Omaha PM.

this involves the co-op's servers.

So I don't really have a role for the pm chapter and the public library. With hard drives able to hold records on everyone on the planet available at any big box office supply store for less than the price of a set of new tires, what use cases (outside of legacy state currencies, and federation between currently operating money handling services doing business in them) possibly require the multi-level situations where an account would be kept with an intermediary? Maybe the futures contracts are provided by intermediaries.

If denver library is a preferred partner with sunshine, bob would pay with "sunshine as presented by denver library" instead of "sunshine as presented by sunshine" and that would be just fine with Omaha co-op. And as a preferred partner, husk futures as presented by omaha.pm are just as good as husks presented by the co-op directly. So intersilo settlements can aggregate, for efficiency.

The protocol requirement would be, the ultimate backer (Omaha Co-op) has a way to state that the preferred partner (omaha pm) is such, and up to what limits.
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