Google Summer of Code: Mozilla Projects
Posted Aug 23, 2007 15:28 UTC (Thu) by zooko
Parent article: Google Summer of Code: Mozilla Projects
The idea of a link fingerprint (this is the first that I've heard of it), is an example of a self-authenticating identifier. I wrote an essay which made a lot of people aware of this concept:
Other examples are Freenet's content-hash-keys (CHKs), which are equivalent to link fingerprints, and Freenet's sub-space keys (SSKs), which are more flexible in that they allow the file being identified to change without changing the identifier. David Maziere's research on "the self-certifying file system" contained an equivalent to SSKs. Mark S. Miller's research on Pet Names was what inspired my "distnames" essay in the first place, and it contains the most complete proposal for making identifiers both secure and user-friendly:
Phil Zimmermann's Zfone secure phone includes a similar technique (due to my suggestion), called "Sticky Note Security".
My current free-software project, http://allmydata.org, contains equivalents to both CHKs and SSKs.
I'm very glad to hear about this project in Mozilla. The idea of using CHKs to denote immutable contents is long overdue -- we should have done this at the beginning of the web. Furthermore, the idea of using SSKs to denote mutable contents may be coming due, too.
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