Platin and W3C — This Changes Everything

Setting the International Standard for Location Proofs

Tim Berners-Lee invented the World Wide Web and works actively to keep it decentralized. Photo by Silvio Tanaka, 2009

Last week, Tim Berners-Lee, inventor of the World Wide Web, announced his latest effort to supercharge the movement to decentralize the web. Platin is proud to be part of this agenda. It is thanks to Sir Tim that every day, our lives involve digital communication in some form. This extends to our cars, phones, and even our watches, and we use all these devices to interact with digital assets on a daily basis.

Platin is working with Sir Tim’s World Wide Web Consortium to build a world in which previously intangible digital assets like cryptocurrencies, documents, and digital collectibles are made tangible and real. Since Platin is a protocol, it must be knit into the sets of standards that enable this digital life to operate. For this reason, we work with this consortium, the most important standards body for our every day digital life.

Platin’s CTO Dr. Wolberger with Sir Tim Berners Lee, at a meeting formulating Verifiable Claims. Photo by Lionel Wolberger.
“Most people think they use the internet every day,” said Dr. Wolberger, Platin’s CTO. “It’s really the World Wide Web that they are using. Google, Facebook, Amazon, Platin — these are services that operate on the World Wide Web.”

Maintaining Privacy

Platin’s mission is to magically link digital assets to a location. This link will not be formed by a separate application or something that requires a special device or software. It will inter-operate with the most ordinary parts of our digital life. Location is Everywhereand in every transaction we make and every place we visit, which is why Platin’s secure and privacy-preserving capabilities must be built into our everyday digital lives.

“People talk about ‘surfing the web’ or ‘finding it on the internet,’ like the two terms are one and the same. It may be surprising for a lot of people to learn that the two terms are quite distinct. The Internet is the supporting infrastructure, almost like the wires and computer chips that electrically signal each other. On the other hand, the World Wide Web is the hands, face and mouth of digital life.” — Dr. Wolberger

The average person touches their smartphone hundreds of times a day. With these taps we make contact with digital assets. Chat messages on social networks, photos that we post and share, videos we watch, or phone calls with colleagues, all are digital assets that flow across the World Wide Web, and they operate because of standards passed by the World Wide Web Consortium, or the W3C for short. The W3C formalizes the standards for the web documents we read, the calls we make, and the padlock that keeps our communications private and our credit cards safe.

The average person touches their smartphone thousands of times a day. Each tap is an interaction with a digital asset. Platin can associate each asset with a physical location.

Working with the W3C

That’s why Platin turned to the W3C to standardize location information. Our team works with various committee members including the Credentials Community Group, the Verifiable Claims Working Group, and the Distributed Identifiers standard.

The first publication in these efforts is available today. In this official report, Dr. Wolberger and his W3C co-authors lay out the W3C’s vision for privacy-preserving location credentials. You can read it here. The paper opens with an ordinary man named Diego, who is asked to share his location.

Location can be involved in any digital interaction. Platin and the W3C standards are ideal for ensuring that he data is kept private and secure.

Diego attempts to use an online service and is asked to share his location in order to prove his geolocation. Diego hesitates since the service doesn’t need his location every day, everywhere. He knows that the service may share this information with other parties without him giving meaningful consent. Thoughts pass through his mind: What location data does the service actually need? What will it read in the future? Is there a way for him to share his location just this once, or at least only an approximate location?

It’s these concerns that drive us to seek out new and secure methods for developing Platin technology.

Developing a Standard

“The W3C is the place where the standards upon which our digital lives operate all come to rest and cooperate. We are happy to lead the location revolution in this context,” shares Dr. Wolberger.

This important new paper guides the W3C community in its effort to preserve privacy while sharing information.You can read the paper in Git here. You can contribute by attending W3C Community Credentials Group meetings.

Read the paper, and let us know: did you think the Web and the Internet were the same things?

Read More

Engineering Privacy for Verified Credentials: In Which We Describe Data Minimization, Selective Disclosure, and Progressive Trust. Link: https://github.com/w3c-ccg/data-minimization


About W3C

“The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) is an international community where Member organizations, a full-time staff, and the public work together to develop Web standards. Led by Web inventor and Director Tim Berners-Lee and CEO Jeffrey Jaffe, W3C’s mission is to lead the Web to its full potential.” (W3C Website)


About Platin

Platin (platin.io) is a secure Proof of Location protocol based on activity recorded and exchanged by means of ordinary smartphones or more specialized devices. Platinincentivizes nodes at scale by means of its own blockchain-based cryptocurrency ‘PTN’. The result is a secure location protocol that is ubiquitous, stackable, reliable, and suited for integration with any business based on location such as supply chain, money and location verifications, LBS-enabled commerce, token geofencing, KYC+AML, and more. Platin’s union of secure location and cryptocurrency at the protocol level is disrupting industries across the world. Location is Everywhere™.

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Image of Sir Tim Berners Lee, person using smartphone, Sir Tim with Dr. Wolberger and person sharing their location, by permission.