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[edit] An Introduction to Bitcoin's Design, Properties, and Future Challenges

Date: May 4, 2016, at 8:00 PM
Presenters: Jonathan Harvey-Buschel
Location: 4-231
Notes: Slides in PDF or LibereOffice/OpenDocument Presentation formats
Abstract: Since the early 80's, the concept of anonymous electronic cash has been an unsolved problem amongst the cryptography community. While Bitcoin is far from a perfect or proven implementation of this concept, it has been running in the wild for over 7 years and has grown from a 9-page whitepaper into a multi-billion dollar network supported by thousands of full nodes and the consumption of hundreds of megawatts.

To understand some key properties of the network, we will first cover the primitives used in Bitcoin and how they relate to various aspects of participating in the network. Given this background, patterns observed in the real world can be related to parts of the protocol. With an understanding of the current state of the network, we will explore the challenges facing Bitcoin today, and some proposed solutions.

Snacks will be served.

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