[cap-talk] Scope/span of capability systems (esp. as data), network reach

Jed Donnelley capability at webstart.com
Sun Mar 1 21:24:29 EST 2009


At 11:16 AM 2/27/2009, Marcus Brinkmann wrote:
>Jed Donnelley wrote:
>...
> > I do!  That is where my view about capabilities as data such as
> > YURLs/Web keys becomes most relevant.  As I've noted my best hope
> > for advancement of IT systems via getting closer to least privilege
> > sharing comes through such networked capability systems.
>
>I think that is a mildly optimistic view :D but it seems to explain the
>differences between you and me.
>
>So let me see how you think it could work out.  Let's assume your vision is
>realized, then it should be possible, I guess (if not, why not?), that you
>send me per email a capability that designates the authority to make deposits
>to your bank account (presumably in a US bank).  I further assume that I can
>get or already  have a capability to my bank account (in a German national
>bank) that allows to make withdrawals.  Would I be able to use these two
>capabilities to transfer 1 EUR from my account to yours?  Where is the service
>located that I would need to use to do that?  Who owns and runs that service,
>and who pays for it?  Who regulates it?

This doesn't seem to me a very interesting example, because we 
essentially already have such "capabilities".  Of course I would only 
send you a "deposit-only" capability to my account.  This is 
essentially an account number.  You could send me such a capability 
to your account.  I could deposit into your account by using my full 
access capability (typically in current electronic form with 
username, password, various registered info, etc.) and the deposit 
only account that you sent to me.

The service is of course provided by the banks.  Nothing new there.

>Would it work also if I were to live in Cuba or N. Korea instead of Germany?

Certainly, with the usual issues of currency conversions.  While I've 
only done such transactions electronically recently with US banks, 
when I lived in Germany in 1994-1995 I did some cash movements 
between US and German banks.  I expect there are such facilities that 
are purely electronic these days.  Not?  Is Ing Direct available in 
Germany?  I could send you a $1 and you could send it back (or send 
me a Euro, my profit ;-) if you'd like to experiment.

I prefer working with files and directories as examples because these 
are the main objects managed by the current market leading OSs of 
Windows, Mac, and Unix.

--Jed  http://www.webstart.com/jed-signature.html 



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