Vitalik Buterin's website

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Latest articles

Coordination, Good and Bad

Special thanks to Karl Floersch and Jinglan Wang for feedback and review See also: On Collusion Engineering Security Through Coordination Problems Trust Models The Meaning Of Decentralization Coordination, the ability for large groups of actors to work together for their common interest, is one of the most powerful forces in the universe....

Trust Models

One of the most valuable properties of many blockchain applications is trustlessness: the ability of the application to continue operating in an expected way without needing to rely on a specific actor to behave in a specific way even when their interests might change and push them to act in some different unexpected way in the future. Blockchain applications...

A Philosophy of Blockchain Validation

See also: A Proof of Stake Design Philosophy The Meaning of Decentralization Engineering Security through Coordination Problems One of the most powerful properties of a blockchain is the fact that every single part of the blockchain's execution can be independently validated. Even if a great majority of a blockchain's miners (or validators in...

Gitcoin Grants Round 6 Retrospective

Round 6 of Gitcoin Grants has just finished, with $227,847 in contributions from 1,526 contributors and $175,000 in matched funds distributed across 695 projects. This time around, we had three categories: the two usual categories of "tech" and "community" (the latter renamed from "media" to reflect a desire for a broad emphasis), and the round-6-special...

Exploring Fully Homomorphic Encryption

Special thanks to Karl Floersch and Dankrad Feist for review Fully homomorphic encryption has for a long time been considered one of the holy grails of cryptography. The promise of fully homomorphic encryption (FHE) is powerful: it is a type of encryption that allows a third party to perform computations on encrypted data, and get an encrypted result...

Gitcoin Grants Round 5 Retrospective

Special thanks to Kevin Owocki and Frank Chen for help and review Round 5 of Gitcoin Grants has just finished, with $250,000 of matching split between tech, media, and the new (non-Ethereum-centric) category of "public health". In general, it seems like the mechanism and the community are settling down into a regular rhythm. People know what it means...

A Quick Garbled Circuits Primer

Special thanks to Dankrad Feist for review Garbled circuits are a quite old, and surprisingly simple, cryptographic primitive; they are quite possibly the simplest form of general-purpose "multi-party computation" (MPC) to wrap your head around. Here is the usual setup for the scheme: Suppose that there are two parties, Alice and Bob, who want to...

Review of Gitcoin Quadratic Funding Round 4

Round 4 of Gitcoin Grants quadratic funding has just completed, and here are the results: The main distinction between round 3 and round 4 was that while round 3 had only one category, with mostly tech projects and a few outliers such as EthHub, in round 4 there were two separate categories, one with a $125,000 matching pool for tech projects,...

Base Layers And Functionality Escape Velocity

One common strand of thinking in blockchain land goes as follows: blockchains should be maximally simple, because they are a piece of infrastructure that is difficult to change and would lead to great harms if it breaks, and more complex functionality should be built on top, in the form of layer 2 protocols: state channels, Plasma, rollup, and so forth....

Christmas Special

Since it's Christmas time now, and we're theoretically supposed to be enjoying ourselves and spending time with our families instead of waging endless holy wars on Twitter, this blog post will offer some games that you can play with your friends that will help you have fun and at the same time understand some spooky mathematical concepts! 1.58 dimensional...

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