Unique Referencing and Identification in the Token Universe: Cross-Chain, Worldwide, and Fork-Resilient


Short video on Youtube: The Uniform Token Locator (UTL) - A Concept to Identify Tokens Uniquely, Cross-Chain, Worldwide, and Fork-Resilient — Youtube URL: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oNlYOXK_wPw
Figure 1: There will be significantly more DL based tokens than assets in the traditional world.

A new identification and reference standard for the decentralized economy

Figure 2: Tokens are defined by software on different DL-Protocols and digitally represent a specific asset, i.e. some form of economic value. While traditional identifiers, such as ISIN, FIGI or currency codes, focus on assigning unique codes (or names) directly to assets, the ITIN aims at unambiguously locating tokens across DLs in a fork-resilient manner.
Figure 3: Example of a token purchase agreement referring an ambiguous Ethereum address
Figure 4: Example how a token can be addressed in a paper-based contract via a QR code

Structure and origin of the UTL

  1. Genesis hash — The hash of the genesis block of a blockchain.
  2. Post-fork hash (PFH) — The hash of the first finalized block complying to the protocol rules of the newest blockchain fork. This hash is generally unique.
  3. Recent hash (RH) — The newest known hash of the chain.
  4. Optional: Smart contract address — Required for non-native tokens.
  5. Optional: Token sub-address — Required for multi-token contracts.
Figure 5: Building upon the URL — ITSA’s concept of a Uniform Token Locator (UTL)
Figure 6: A real-life example for the UTL and the ITIN

Assumptions and Limitations

Conclusion and Outlook



  • Blockchain knowledge: We wrote a Medium article on how to acquire the necessary blockchain knowledge within a workload of 10 working days.
  • Our two blockchain books: We have edited two books on how blockchain will change our society (Amazon link) in general and the everything related to finance (Amazon link) in particular. Both books are available in print and for Kindle — currently in German and soon in English. The authors have been more than 20 well-known blockchain experts in startups, corporations and the government from Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Liechtenstein — all contributing their expertise to these two books.
Our two books: the first one on blockchain and the society and the second one on blockchain and finance





Professor | Lecturer | Author | Investor | Frankfurt School Blockchain Center

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Philipp Sandner

Philipp Sandner

Professor | Lecturer | Author | Investor | Frankfurt School Blockchain Center

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