BIP 0015

From Bitcoin Wiki
Revision as of 21:02, 12 December 2011 by Genjix (talk | contribs) (FirstBits)
Jump to: navigation, search

Work In Progress

  BIP: 15
  Title: BIP Alias
  Author: Amir Taaki <>
  Status: Draft
  Type: Standards Track
  Created: 10-12-2011

Using vanilla bitcoin, to send funds to a destination, an address in the form 1Hd44nkJfNAcPJeZyrGC5sKJS1TzgmCTjjZ is needed. The problem with using addresses is they are not easy to remember. An analogy can be thought if one were required to enter the IP address of their favourite websites if domain names did not exist.

This document aims to layout through careful argument, a bitcoin alias system. This is a big modification to the protocol that is not easily changed in the future and has big ramifications. There is impetus in getting it correct the first time. Aliases have to be robust and secure.


Here are a few different proposals and the properties of each system.


FirstBits is a proposal for using the blockchain as an address book.

When bitcoins are sent to an address, that address becomes recorded in the blockchain. It is therefore known that this address exists or did exist by simply seeing that there was a payment to that address. FirstBits is a method to have a memorable alias. One first converts the address to lower-case, then takes the first few unique characters. This is your FirstBits alias.

As an example, brmlab hackerspace in Prague has a donation address:


Their FirstBits address becomes:


- firstbits / brmlab example - socket based - dns records (needs dnssec) - https web service