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I'm looking for a high level overview of the SS58 format

I found this but can't seem to find an overview description

  1. What is the SS58 format?
  2. Where is it used?
  3. What are the whys and wherefores?

2 Answers 2

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From the docs:

The SS58 address format is a public key address based on the Bitcoin Base-58-check encoding. Each Substrate SS58 address uses a base-58 encoded value to identify a specific account on a specific Substrate-based chain. These are represented by a base-58 encoded value to identify a specific account on a specific Substrate chain. The canonical ss58-registry provide additional details about the address format used by different Substrate-based chains, including the network prefix and website used for different networks.

I'm guessing that the SS stands for secret string

See also:

https://paritytech.github.io/substrate/master/sp_core/crypto/trait.Ss58Codec.html

https://web.archive.org/web/20220211124735/https://docs.substrate.io/v3/advanced/ss58/

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What is ? SS58 is a straightforward address design intended for Substrate based chains. Everything looks great with utilizing other address designs for a chain, however this fills in as a vigorous default. Use: The fundamental thought is a base-58 encoded esteem that can recognize a particular record on the Substrate chain. Various chains have various method for distinguishing accounts. SS58 is intended to be extensible hence.

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