Currency Brands, OCAUP and Prowl

I have revised the hastily drafted game-design representation of tyaga’s goals. In reviewing the simplified “game rules”, I was reminded of the standards that underlie the success of the World Wide Web. The web standards, listed in order of importance by Tim Berners-Lee, include the URI, HTTP and HTML. In other words, the Web is primarily defined by the use of URIs, a standard that is easily taken for granted while HTTP and HTML receive more attention.

It was also no accident that URIs use the Domain Naming System, which was designed to be globally scalable and was already widely supported. For the same reasons, Prowl also specifies the use of domain names to simplify the implementation of the similarly crucial concept of Independent Currency Brands (ICBs). The use of separate registries would have added unnecessary complexity and led to collisions as more market entities establish independent currency brands.

After the concept of ICB, the second-most important design aspect in Prowl relates to accounting models. Just as web and gopher clients offered interoperability in each other’s early protocol versions, Prowl is also designed to understand different market transaction requirements and effects on account balances. For example, would transactors have to be members of the same community to transact (mutual-credit, cc model)? Would the ‘buyer’ accrue debt which would have to be settled later (lender-borrower model)? By default, Prowl reporters are expected to support the cross-verification of OCAUP-based transactions, where the buyer entity’s unused expense and seller entity’s unused revenue budgets decrease by the same amount. The default notary support for OCAUP is similar to the default support for HTTP in web browsers.

The third-most important design aspect in Prowl relates to the representation of transaction information. Prowl specifies default published record syntax, report structure and query-response conventions. However, Prowl should support other representations as they emerge. As inter-regional trade in ledger-based currency grows, Prowl would need to support currency activity representations in different dialects.

The game-design representation also shows tyaga’s infrastructure building blocks as a list of ‘game equipment’. Through Prowl standards and PaCT payment sequence, establishing and using independent currency brands should become simpler and more fun.