Zero Knowledge

Where we talk about zero knowledge research and the decentralised web

About the show

Zero Knowledge is a podcast which goes deep into the tech that will power the emerging decentralised web and the community building this. The podcast is made for fellow developers and people looking to educate themselves on the inner workings of the space.

We are non-speculative and focus on the tech.

Zero Knowledge is hosted by Anna Rose and Fredrik Harrysson. Our views do not come from nor represent our companies.

Follow us at @fredhrson & @AnnaRRose

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  • Episode 136: Math competitions, crypto as alchemy & Gasper with Yan Zhang

    July 1st, 2020  |  57 mins 13 secs
    academic paper, blockchain, cryptography, ethereum, ethereum foundation, math competition, math education

    This week, Anna and guest host Tarun Chitra chat with Yan Zhang, professor at SJSU, about math competitions, math education, how crypto is like alchemy and the Gasper paper - work Yan and his students collaborated on with the Ethereum Foundation.

  • Episode 135: Look into Solana

    June 24th, 2020  |  59 mins 25 secs
    blockchain, blockchain scaling, eth2.0, layer 1, scaling, sharding, solana, vdfs

    This week, Anna and guest host Georgios Konstantopoulos chat with Anatoly Yakovenko from Solana network. They learn about this system and discuss the innovations that allow them to achieve high performance without sharding.

  • Episode 134: tBTC with Matt Luongo

    June 17th, 2020  |  58 mins 21 secs
    bitcoin, blockchain, blockchain bridges, btc bridges, crypto, cryptocurrency, ethereum, tbtc

    In this episode, we chat with Matt Luongo, CEO of Thesis, founder of Keep, and project lead of tBTC. We cover the need for BTC to ETH bridges, what the challenges are in building bridges with BTC, tBTC and how it is setup, what went down with the initial tBTC release - an event the team now refers to as "release candidate 0", and where we might be seeing tBTC go next.

  • Episode 133: Trusted Setup Ceremonies Explored

    June 10th, 2020  |  1 hr 14 mins
    aztec protocol, ethereum, power of tau, semaphore, snark, tornado cash, trusted setup, zcash, zksnark

    In this week's episode, Anna explores the recent trusted setups for SNARK systems. She interviews Koh Wei Jie from the Ethereum Foundation, Thomas Walton-Pocock from Aztec Protocol, Brecht Devos from Loopring and Kobi Gurkan from the EF and cLabs. This episode covers the new generation of trusted setups and how these teams are learning from each other and at times, even sharing parts of the trusted set up itself.

  • Episode 132: Handshake Protocol with Mark Tyneway

    June 3rd, 2020  |  55 mins 11 secs
    blockchain development, decentralisation, dns, handshake protocol,, light client

    In this episode, we chat with Mark Tyneway who is a contributor on the Handshake Protocol project - an experimental peer-to-peer root naming system. We learn about this decentralised, foundation-free project, the issues of DNS, how Handshake plans on fixing this, how it differs from ENS, their unique airdrop process, what an Urkel Trie is, and more.

  • Episode 131: Proof of Necessary Work with Akis Kattis (NYU)

    May 27th, 2020  |  59 mins 11 secs
    blockchain, decentralisation, nyu, proof of necessary work, proof of stake, proof of work, snarks

    In this week's episode, Anna and guest host Tarun Chitra chat with Akis Kattis, a PhD student at NYU & the co-author of Proof of Necessary Work: Succinct State Verification with Fairness Guarantees - a paper he co-wrote with Joseph Bonneau. They discuss the challenge of Proof of Useful Work, the unique properties that SNARKs have, such as puzzle hardness, that allow for PoNW to overcome these challenges, PoS SNARK systems, elastic block construction, and more.

  • Episode 130: Exploring Tezos & their recent Sapling integration

    May 20th, 2020  |  1 hr 5 mins
    blockchain, decentralised ecosystem, governance, proof-of-stake, tezos, zero knowledge proofs

    In this week's episode, Anna interviews three people from the Tezos community: Jacob Arluck (co-founders TQ ), Marc Beunardeau and Marco Stronati (both from Nomadic Lab). They chat about the Tezos origin story, the development of the PoS system, the governance of Tezos, and how they are incorporating zk proofs - and specifically Sapling from Zcash - into their system.

  • Episode 129: IPFS 0.5 with Molly Mackinlay from Protocol Labs

    May 13th, 2020  |  58 mins 16 secs
    decentralised technology, decentralised web, developer community, ipfs, libp2p, netflix, protocol labs, ux

    In this episode, we chat with Molly Mackinlay, Project Lead for the InterPlanetary File System (IPFS) at Protocol Labs. We talk about her journey to Protocol Labs, as well as take a deeper view into IPFS, LibP2P, Bitswap, Testground, the use cases and projects working with these tools, and the specific upgrades they have made with the recent 0.5 IPFS release. We also chat about the path to decentralisation and the importance of building bridges to the Web2 world.

  • Episode 128: DP-3T & Contact Tracing with Kenny Paterson from ETH Zurich

    May 6th, 2020  |  1 hr 1 min
    contract tracing, covid-19 privacy, cryptography, dp-3t, europe technology, privacy tech

    In this week's episode, Anna catches up with Kenny Paterson, Professor of Computer Science and Lead of Applied Cryptography Group at ETH Zurich. The goal of the episode is to take a deeper look at DP-3T and privacy preserving contact tracing research in Europe generally. They cover his work at ETH Zurich, discuss how the DP-3T project came to be, look at risks facing contact tracing protocols generally, and discuss why putting privacy and decentralisation at the heart of these types of protocol is so important.

  • Episode 127: Consensus Algorithms & HotStuff with Ittai Abraham

    April 29th, 2020  |  1 hr 2 mins
    blockchain, consensus, consensus protocols, cryptography, hotstuff, libra, proof of stake, vmware

    In this week's episode, we go deep on Consensus Algorithms and HotStuff with Ittai Abraham from VMware Research. We chat about the evolution of consensus algorithms, BFT, and how these early ideas have become the backbone of blockchain tech. We cover PBFT, Tendermint and Ittai's research into SBFT, HotStuff, and the improvements he has been working on since HotStuffs incorporation into Facebook's Libra protocol.

  • Episode 126: Crypto libraries, Zcash's Zebra and contact tracing with Henry de Valence

    April 22nd, 2020  |  1 hr 6 mins
    contact tracing, coronavirus, crypto libraries, cryptography, pandemic, privacy, privacy tech, tcn coalition, zcash

    In this week's episode, we chat with Henry de Valence from the Zcash Foundation. We discuss what makes for a strong crypto library, some of the work he has been doing at the ZF and he shares an update about the Zebra Zcash client. We also learn about the TCN Coalition, a group he is working with that aims to build and evaluate privacy-preserving contact tracing protocols - an important tool in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic.

  • Episode 125: Mixnets and privacy technology with Claudia Diaz from Nym

    April 15th, 2020  |  1 hr 4 mins
    cryptography, european privacy, mixnets, nym, privacy technology, privacy-preserving, zero knowledge

    In this episode, Anna catches up with Claudia Diaz, professor at KU Leuven and the Chief Science Officer at Nym Technology to learn about mixnets, the history of privacy technology and how there may be some opportunities for new privacy tech to emerge in this post-pandemic world.

  • Episode 124: Exploring FHE with Flavio Bergamaschi from IBM Research

    April 8th, 2020  |  1 hr 4 mins
    cryptography, fhe, homomorphic encryption, ibm research, mpc, technology, zero knowledge

    In this episode, we chat with Flavio Bergamaschi from IBM research about his work on Fully Homomorphic Encryption (FHE). FHE allows for computation on encrypted data. First developed in 2009 at IBM, this tech has long been the considered only theoretically possible. However, as we learn in the interview, there have been strides made in the last few years and we are starting to see FHE technology being used in some real world applications.

  • Episode 123: Halo with Sean Bowe and Daira Hopwood from ECC

    April 1st, 2020  |  1 hr 8 mins
    ecc, electric coin company, halo, recursive snarks, trusted setup, zcash, zero knowledge

    In this episode, we catch up with Sean Bowe and Daira Hopwood from the Electric Coin Company (ECC) to chat about Halo, a recursive proof composition that doesn't require a trusted setup. We cover the efficiency techniques used in Halo such as "nested amortization", how the protocol was developed, what some of the key findings are, and how it fits in with the other recent SNARK-based protocols.

  • Episode 122: ZKPs, Audits & Security with Benjamin Perez from Trail of Bits

    March 25th, 2020  |  54 mins 2 secs
    blockchain, cryptographic vulnerability, cryptography, security, technical audit, whitepaper, zero knowledge

    In this week's episode, we chat with Benjamin Perez from Trail of Bits about the evolution of the crypto tech auditing business, the new challenges that emerge in zero knowledge proof systems regarding security, some of the recent bugs and vulnerabilities found in zkp systems and more!

  • Episode 121: Urbit with Galen Wolf-Pauly from Tlon

    March 18th, 2020  |  1 hr 17 mins
    decentralisation, distributed systems, operating system, peer-to-peer, tech, urbit

    In this episode, we meet with Galen Wolf-Pauly from the Tlon Corporation to discuss the project Urbit. Urbit is an encrypted peer-to-peer network comprised of a deterministic operating system (Urbit OS / Arvo) and a secure, global identity layer (Urbit ID / Azimuth). The Urbit contributors have created new stack, built from the ground up as an integrated system with a focus on user experience.