Sign in, badge and lanyard distribution
Konferenco distributes the Monero Devices merchpack to a select group consisting of speakers, volunteers, and VIP ticket holders. If you are lucky enough to receive one, then you may want to know about the feature set of the various items in the merchpack. What are the different products, what does each one do, and how can they enrich your Konferenco experience?
We will review the Monero Devices merchpack as distributed at the event, and attempt to answer as many questions as we can in this brief presentation intended for novice users.
Numerous studies have concluded that people do claim to care about their privacy, yet we are surrounded by people who opt for outdated devices, default settings, invasive social media, and targeted advertising. Why is that? Many of us struggle with conveying the value of privacy to those around us, and sometimes even struggle with getting them to use basic tools like a better browser or a different messenger. This talk aims to explore some of the obstacles people struggle with when confronted with privacy, and some of the "dos and don'ts" for those of us trying to spread the message. From the people who argue “I have nothing to hide” to those who claim to care yet simply don’t act, we will explore a variety of psychological phenomenon that explain this behavior and some of the roadblocks – real or imagined – that make people hesitant to make the switch to more privacy-friendly behaviors. We will also explore some commonly suggested tactics to sway these people and explain why they do (or more often, don’t) work, what does work, and why it works. Audience members will hopefully leave with a better understanding of how to engage with non-privacy people in meaningful and effective ways that leave the person more open to adopting privacy-friendly changes in the future.
An ELI15 presentation discussing the importance of full chain membership proofs, how they can be implemented (various forms of merkle tree accumulators), how they'll fit into Seraphis, and the current work being discussed (moving to a curve cycle) to ensure they remain accessible. It'll also cover why moving to a curve cycle now is so important, despite not discussing moving to SNARKs now, and the prior roadblocks to changing curves we now have solutions for.
Coffee, tea, biscuits
This is a 20 minute presentation that covers instances of financial censorship (denial of service of transaction intermediaries such as credit card payments, PayPal and traditional banking) to individuals, businesses, industries and countries and how Monero can help overcome financial censorship and why it this infringement on financial liberty can help Monero achieve adoption as a currency and alternative to traditional finance.
The presentation examines both explicit uses of hard, government-executed financial censorship and subtler approaches such as Operation Chokepoint and attempts to contextualize the present hardships and friction felt by many cryptocurrency companies and individuals in the crypto space when interfacing with legacy financial institutions, as well as going into ways in which we can and should attempt to proliferate XMR as a means of payment.
Cryptocurrency systems can be subject to deanonymization attacks by exploiting the network-level communication on their peer-to-peer network. Adversaries who control a set of colluding node(s) within the peer-to-peer network can observe transactions being exchanged and infer the parties involved. Thus, various network anonymity schemes have been proposed to mitigate this problem, with some solutions providing theoretical anonymity guarantees.
In this work, we model such peer-to-peer network anonymity solutions and evaluate their anonymity guarantees. To do so, we propose a novel framework that uses Bayesian inference to obtain the probability distributions linking transactions to their possible originators. We characterize transaction anonymity with those distributions, using entropy as metric of adversarial uncertainty on the originator's identity. In particular, we model Dandelion, Dandelion++, and Lightning Network. We study different configurations and demonstrate that none of them offers acceptable anonymity to their users. For instance, our analysis reveals that in the widely deployed Lightning Network, with 1% strategically chosen colluding nodes the adversary can uniquely determine the originator for ≈50% of the total transactions in the network. In Dandelion, an adversary that controls 15% of the nodes has on average uncertainty among only 88 possible originators. Moreover, we observe that due to the way Dandelion and Dandelion++ are designed, increasing the network size does not correspond to an increase in the anonymity set of potential originators. Alarmingly, our longitudinal analysis of Lightning Network reveals rather an inverse trend---with the growth of the network the overall anonymity decreases.
Food trucks, drinks
In privacy-preserving transaction protocols, confidential asset designs permit transfer of quantities of distinct asset types in a way that obscures their types and values. Spark is a protocol that provides flexible privacy properties relating to addressing, transaction sources and recipients, and value transfer; however, it does not natively support the use of multiple confidential asset types or non-fungible tokens. Here we describe Spats, a new design for confidential assets and serialized tokens compatible with Spark that focuses on efficient and modular implementation. It does so by extending coin value commitments to bind and mask an asset type and identifier, and asserting in zero knowledge that they are maintained throughout transactions. We describe the cryptographic components and changes to the Spark protocol necessary for the design of Spats.
Why do parallel societies actually work? What is the impact of particular techniques on our day to day lives? I will talk about strategies to increase liberty by being able to escape, or by not being seen.
Since the advent of cryptocurrencies, governments globally have set out to regulate them as new means for storing, exchanging, and accounting value. The European Union has produced multiple legal frameworks to legislate a characterisation of cryptocurrencies, regulate their circulation, and identify holders of decentralised wallets. While the EU’s ‘Directive on markets in crypto-assets’ or its ‘Regulation on information accompanying transfers of funds and certain crypto-assets’ are notable, they appear to be pretext for more regulation in Europe. Thus, it must be investigated which actions on EU-level are taken to deepen user identification for controlling digital money flows.
Ironically, the cryptocurrency and the underlying cryptographic research are currently delivering the answer to the EU’s ambitious goal of reclaiming its monopoly over monetary policy. The turing-complete nature of Ethereum’s native programming language Solidity allows complex computations to be performed on-chain. Subsequently, applications form an ecosystem on Ethereum as layer one, which today is known as Web3. Like the EU’s objective to control money currents from and to unhosted wallets, Web3 faces the issue of authenticating users when they are accessing information stored in auxiliary backends.
Actors in Web3 responded by coining the notion of decentralised identity, or self-sovereign identity in today’s terminology. The exploration of data formats and communication protocols used in SSI and Web3 is interesting and relevant. Yet, the relationship between identifiers and referenced identity data is crucial to illuminate the reasons for Monero missing out on SSI. Within the paradigm of SSI, identifiers and identity data are associated through a decentralised identifier (DID) document. Hence, a verifiable connection between public keys and metadata forms the foundation for SSI.
For example, to create a self-sovereign identity with a DID-method based on Bitcoin the actor has to create two Bitcoin compliant key pairs and post a transaction to the Bitcoin network. The transaction identifier then is stored in a DID registry and links the key pair used to post a transaction with an entity, which uses the private key to sign the credentials it issues. Although Monero prevents double spending, like Bitcoin through proof-of-work, its confidentiality preserving features for the transactor have rendered the creation of Monero-based DID-methods prohibitively complex. Thus, currently no Monero-based DID-method exists.
Meanwhile, the narrative of trustable and verified identities used for issuing credentials pertains primarily to institutional SSI-actors. Natural persons’ identifiable information, however, should not be subjected to the immutability and persistence that are used for institutions. While some SSI-solutions did not fully acknowledge their infringing nature on a person’s right to be forgotten, they do so to the end of enabling users to continuously present their credentials. In other words, privacy preserving key rotation for users, who are natural persons, remains unaddressed by existing SSI-solutions. Thus, this contribution explores whether Monero rightfully misses out on decentralised identity, whereas it can offer privacy-preserving DID-anchoring to facilitate key rotation for natural persons.
Coffee, tea, biscuits
We will provide a comprehensive overview of Security, Spam, Scaling in Monero including: security and the critical role played by the fixed block reward (tail emission), the block weight penalty, the long term median, the short term median, the dynamic penalty free zone, the multiple fee markets created by the medians, the impact of privacy and fungibility on spam mitigation, spam mitigation and transaction pricing, scaling, the percentage of the total block reward consisting of transaction fees (fee in reward), and the implied (theoretical) orphan block penalty. We will consider possible future parameter optimizations to further harden Monero against spam, while optimizing scaling, and a possible ultra long term (1,000,000 block) sanity median. Monero because of its privacy and fungibility does not permit the use of censorship as an anti spam tool. This means that the security, spam, and scaling tools in Monero could in principle be applied to Bitcoin like coin such as Dogecoin, which also has a tail emission. The Monero fee markets can be very instructive in understanding the challenges faced by Bitcoin and other falling block reward coins. We will discuss these challenges including: the security deficit, fee markets, spam, 51% attacks, what miner voting on the gas limit in Ethereum tells us, and other possible future scenarios.
Proof of reserves protocols enable cryptocurrency exchanges to prove solvency, i.e. prove that they have enough reserves to meet their liabilities towards their customers. MProve (EuroS&PW, 2019) was the first proof of reserves protocol for Monero which provided some privacy to the exchanges’ addresses. As the key images and the addresses are inherently linked in the MProve proof, an observer could easily recognize the exchange-owned address when a transaction spending from it appears on the blockchain. This is detrimental for an exchange’s privacy and becomes a natural reason for exchanges to not adopt MProve. To this end, we propose MProve+, a Bulletproofs-based (S&P, 2018) NIZK protocol, which unlinks the key images and the addresses, thus alleviating the drawback of MProve. Furthermore, MProve+ presents a promising alternative to MProve due to an order of magnitude smaller proof sizes along with practical proof generation and verification times.
Vnitroblock - welcome dinner for speakers, VIPs, and volunteers
Address: Tusarova 791/31, 170 00 Praha 7-Holešovice, Czechia
Social event for speakers, VIPs, and volunteers. Open bar 22:00-23:00, Monero payments accepted at bar afterwards.
Address: Uhelný trh 414/9, 110 00 Staré Město, Czechia
Hours: 21 :00–5 :00
Coffee, tea, biscuits
Payment Channels (PC) and Payment Channel Networks (PCN) have become popular solutions for addressing scalability issues in major cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Ripple. These solutions, also known as layer 2 or off-chain solutions, are widely used to scale payment systems.
In this talk, I will present PayMo, this first payment channel protocol is fully compatible with Monero’s transaction scheme and can be readily used to perform off-chain payments. Notably, transactions in PayMo are identical to standard transactions in Monero, therefore not hampering the coins’ fungibility. Using PayMo, we also construct a provably secure and scriptless atomic-swap protocol compatible with the transaction scheme of Monero: One can now securely swap a token of Monero with a token of several major cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple, Cardano, etc.
Food trucks, drinks
Monero Trivia is ALWAYS a fun time.
I will present using Kahoot, an online trivia platform where anyone can join using their phone or computer and an internet connection.
I will ask a series of questions (most of them multiple choice) about Monero, including its history and more.
The top 3 winners could get a conference-given prize, or I will think of something.
This should ideally be more than 20 minutes total since setup will take about 10 minutes. 60 minutes is too much. Trivia is a great, fun, and educational way to break up the conference.
WILLPOWER is a Solar-Cypherpunk Audio-Visual Artist, Performer & Spiritual Creative Technologist using Light, Sound and other Invisible Forces to transcend the Matrix... creating the nUtopia. He started deejaying at 11 in New York City and was doing it in clubs in Los Angeles by 13. WILLPOWER has a deep history as a HipHoppa growing up in Paris, NYC and L.A..
Margaux is from the New York Punk Scene. She is a singer and bass player. As a way to spread awareness, Margaux approached WILLPOWER to do their now song and music video 'Pay Me In Monero'.