All Undergrads Should Learn About Bitcoin & Blockchain

Jeremy Clark

This interview was originally published by our French franchise partner fr.cryptonews.com.
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Bitcoin (BTC) officially turns 11 on January 3, 2020. As the token enters its third decade, how does one of the first few academics to ever write a paper on BTC see the future of Satoshi Nakamoto’s creation?

Jeremy Clark, associate professor and the NSERC/Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton (RCGT)/Catallaxy Industrial Research Chair in Blockchain Technologies at the Concordia Institute for Information Systems Engineering, tells Cryptonews.com all about BTC’s academic past, present – and future.

How did you first get involved in Bitcoin and blockchain technology?
When I was at university, I was really into cellular automata. My friend (and now my research colleague) was into encryption. We agreed to combine our interests for a final year project and I got hooked!

A year or so later, I met one of the founders of the whole movement, David Chaum. David invented the concept of digital cryptocurrencies when I was still in diapers!

We began working together on secure voting-related projects. I found the subject amazing because I realized that it was both highly technical and could have a real social impact.

You could design protocols and write code, but then later you would talk to policymakers and election officials. Ultimately, I got to see people casting votes using the system we had created!

How did you react when you first came across Bitcoin?
To be honest, back then, most online crypto-hangouts – including the cryptography mailing list that the Bitcoin white paper was posted to – were full of half-baked ideas about creating digital currencies.

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So, embarrassingly perhaps, I did not look deep enough into it to see anything different about Bitcoin. But after I had heard my colleagues mention it a few times, my ears pricked up. And when I came to understand one of its key components, the proof-of-work consensus…

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