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Introduction (2019)

Transcript By: Bryan Bishop

Tags: Security, Scalability

Category: Workshop

Introduction to DFA Workshop

We are an international conference that focuses on the latest development in software and its scalability in the bitcoin ecosystem. We have come here to Israel. We are running 5 days of events, including this current workshop. Over the next 4 days following today, we’re running Bitcoin Edge Dev++ workshop at Tel Aviv University for 2 days, and then Scaling Bitcoin for 2 days which is compromised of over 44 high tech sessions on complex scalability and security related topics in the bitcoin ecosystem, mainly for developers. There’s also a work in progress sessions. It’s 54 sessions over 4 days, a very high intensity program.

We’ve been asked to facilitate this workshop. This is the first instance of this workshop. It’s called Decentralized Financial Architecture for multistakeholders to discuss various regulatory aspects of the ecosystem. I personally represent the developer ecosystem here but bitcoin touches a lot of different fields, and one of the most important one is regulatory.

This workshop is running under Chatham House rules. However, if anybody wants to quote somebody, they can go and ask the person permission specifically. With that, I would like to introduce Aviv Zohar who is a professor at the Hebrew University of Jerulasem. He has been involved in bitcoin tech development and has also been on the ground in Israel with different regulatory bodies.

Introduction

Hi. I am Aviv Zohar. I am an academic and more on the technical side of bitcoin. I am a computer scientist. My own interest in events like this that have a mixed audience I suppose started when I started to think about how bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are kind of stalled. We’ve seen several bubbles in some sense in bitcoin in particular. Each one of them hits some fundamental limit of system growth, maybe there’s not enough exchanges or there’s some technical aspect limitation that is reached.

However, in recent years one of the things we’ve been seeing quite a lot is that one of the major friction points for cryptocurrency growth is the regulatory aspect. A lot of the parsing and understanding needs to happen both on the regulatory side and also on the technical side of how these systems meet together. New world and old world systems, like traditional financial systems that have in place mechanisms to stop finance they don’t like, to get people to pay taxes, to stop people from funding political enemies, etc. We’re about to see how these things mesh together.

I think the most exciting thing about events like this is the mixture of people in the room, like technical people on the ground doing things in cryptocurrency, but also regulators who are trying to figure out how to enable new technology and not kill it but still maintain their permission on protecting the public from risks and protecting the economy from systemic risks. I hope we have a productive day.

We’re going to start with talks that will set the tone. We will review all of the challenges and all of the things we’re facing. I think we’re going to reach what I consider a very interesting part of the day where after lunch we will have some roundtables to discuss… I hope we’re able to generate really interesting discussions. Usually when you take people from different spheres into a room, you usually win and get a very interesting discussion.

I’d like to give a lot of thanks to Anton Yemelyanov for organizing this and facilitating all of the week ahead of us. There are many other people working on logistics. Everything is working seamlessly because they’ve been here for 2 weeks running around to do setup. I’d also like to thank all the speakers that are going to be here. They are the ones who really initiated the event.