Paul R Griffin, Associate Professor of Information Systems, SIS, Singapore Management University
About this talk
The well known trilemma for blockchains, originally stated by the founder of Ethereum, Vitalik Buterin, is that it is not possible to maxmise the speed, size and security of a blockchain all at the same time. As one of these features increases one or more of the other two decreases. For example, increasing the size of the network will allow for more attacks, decreasing the security and with more nodes in the network, consensus could take longer, decreasing the performance. This trilemma is one of the greatest hurdles for expanding the use of cryptocurrencies further.
In this presentation, the key aspects of quantum computing will be introduced and how they are applied to blockchain consensus to break the trilemma. This move from classical computing to quantum computing is shown to theoretically enhance the scalability and speed of distributed consensus as well as improve security. Improvements in consensus speed and scalability are also shown by removing the need for multicast responses by exploiting quantum properties ensuring that only single message transmission is required. Furthermore, current work on quantum key distribution protocols can securely transmit values and prevent a man-in-the-middle attack or system disturbance, enhancing confidentiality and integrity of transmitted information. A proof-of-concept using IBM’s Qskit will be shown to present the current practical feasibility and future work is explored.
● Understanding the main features of quantum technologies
● Applying quantum computing to blockchains
● Breaking the blockchain trilemma
● Demonstration of a quantum consensus algorithm
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