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Sarang: funding for January-March 2019

Friends, neighbors, well-wishers, hello. Dr. Sarang Noether here, back again for Monero Research Lab 2: The Search For More Money. My current funded research time is coming to a close, and I'm good to go for another three months of research and development for the Monero Research Lab.

You can read my reports for October and November, with December coming at the end of this month. There has been, in my not-so-humble opinion, a lot of quality work for the project and community. I've conducted analysis, built useful cryptographic primitives, written code, tested new ideas, and more. One of the original and primary reasons for the creation of the Lab was to continue investigating what's new in applied cryptography and use it to strengthen Monero, and my work has done so.

The next three months will be, as they should be, a mix of tasks and topics. I always stay up-to-date on new developments and literature review. I collaborate with outside researchers and groups on analysis and new technology. There will be more on confidential transaction schemes, payment channel and atomic swap plumbing, security analysis, and whatever comes next.

I work hard to provide value to the Monero community for the value you provide here. For the period beginning January 2019 and continuing to the end of March 2019, my rate will be the equivalent of 10415 USD each month, which is my assessment of fair market compensation for a Ph.D. researcher in this field with a proven track record working from the United States; this takes into the account that making this my full-time job carries irritating but necessary support and tax implications that I take very seriously. Using a 14-day exponential moving average of 47.21 USD/XMR taken from Kraken, the request total is 661 XMR. If there are large fluctuations prior to the close of funding, we can revisit this number.

I invite questions, comments, and discussion on my previous work and this proposal. My thanks for the ongoing support of this community; whether you donate here, volunteer your time developing or translating or documenting, reach out to others for education, or simply use Monero, your dedication is appreciated! The Lab works hard to ensure Monero continues to grow safely and surely. Onwards!

EDIT (9 December 2018): Updated rate from 58.69 to 50.68 USD/XMR and total from 533 to 616 XMR due to large fluctuations.

EDIT (14 December 2018): Updated rate from 50.68 to 44.39 USD/XMR and total from 616 to 703 XMR due to large fluctuations.

EDIT (1 January 2019): Updated rate from 44.39 to 47.21 USD/XMR and total from 703 to 661 XMR due to large fluctuations.

Replies: 8
SarangNoether posted 11 months ago Weight: 66 | Link [ - ]

Greetings to all. Dr. Sarang Noether here, delivering to you the second of three monthly research reports for my current funding period to describe my work from February. As always, my deep and sincere thanks go out to the Monero community for supporting my research and that of the Monero Research Lab.

In preparation for the upcoming network upgrade, I've written simulations to examine the response of different block size scaling algorithms to adversarial network conditions. Additional simulations, which will be used for the next client release due to the network upgrade timeline, examine more robust ways of handling ring member selection and ways to mitigate certain statistical heuristics.

I've been collaborating with other researchers to finalize a paper describing useful signature constructions for Monero that relate to payment channels and non-interactive refunds. This has been ongoing, but new proofs and scaling data mean the paper is nearly set to be submitted for a conference. The preprint will be shared publicly after submission. As always, I appreciate the opportunity to work with other researchers on interesting cryptographic problems.

The recent Stanford Blockchain Conference was a great success, with plenty of fascinating talks on new research. Videos and slides are posted at the conference links. Community support to attend this conference is gratefully acknowledged.

I presented at a recent meetup in Nashville, where I discussed different ways that projects approach privacy and fungibility. My thanks to the attendees for great questions and conversations.

Work for the next month will, as always, be varied. The security model for a Bulletproofs multiparty computation protocol has been worked out, and test code is being finalized. This has been on the back burner for a while, and was temporarily tabled to make time for the network upgrade. Expect more results and analysis for transaction relay, Breaking Monero educational videos, Bulletproofs, and documentation.

And now, on to Sarang's Reading Corner, a list of some of the interesting papers I've come across recently in my ongoing literature review. The appearance of a paper in this list does not imply that I endorse it, or even necessarily agree with its contents or conclusions. These are in no particular order.

SarangNoether posted 1 year ago Weight: 8 | Link [ + ]

Hello everyone! It's your old pal Dr. Sarang Noether, delivering the first monthly research report of the new year. This is the first of three reports for my current funding period, which was made possible by the generosity of the Monero community through donations and in spirit.

Monero researchers and developers have been busy preparing for the spring network upgrade, and we are finalizing changes that you can expect to see released in a few months. A great deal of planning, research, simulation, coding, and testing has gone into this process. Payment IDs are set to be removed over the next two releases, which will make transactions simpler, smaller, and more uniform. We've simplified some of the underlying cryptography that powers our confidential transaction scheme to make transactions a bit smaller. Bulletproofs have received many additional speedups and optimizations that decrease verification time by up to 60% (and possibly more) from the last release. Our dynamic block size algorithm will be updated to more robustly handle spikes in transaction volume. And there are plenty more updates in the next release, so stay tuned.

Led by the esteemed Justin Ehrenhofer of community fame, we've begun releasing a video series called Breaking Monero that goes in depth talking about weaker aspects of Monero's structure and operation, and how we've improved over our history. Each episode features a topic, like unusual ring sizes or chain reactions, that an adversary might use to analyze the Monero blockchain. We discuss the history of Monero analysis, practical recommendations for users, and how researchers continue to iterate on improvements to the protocol. More episodes are on the way!

As you likely read this, I am participating in the Stanford Blockchain Conference, an outstanding academic conference on applied cryptography. Last year's event featured a host of presentations and results very relevant to Monero, and this year promises to continue this trend.

Other important but less prominent areas of ongoing work include the ring decoy output selection algorithm, alternate ring signature schemes, interactive and non-interactive refund and return address constructions, an upcoming paper on graph analysis, and more!

For the next month, expect additional simulations and formal planning for the spring network upgrade, code for a Bulletproofs multi-party computation protocol, improved documentation, transaction relay simulations, the usual literature and code review, and many other mathematical odds and ends.

And now, on to Sarang's Reading Corner, a list of some of the interesting papers I've come across recently in my ongoing literature review. The appearance of a paper in this list does not imply that I endorse it, or even necessarily agree with its contents or conclusions. These are in no particular order.

anhdres posted 1 year ago Weight: 0 | Link [ + ]


SarangNoether posted 1 year ago Weight: 0 | Link [ + ]

My sincere thanks go out to everyone who offered their support, either through donation or in spirit. This community is the reason Monero continues to succeed!

MoneroGermany posted 1 year ago Weight: 0 | Link [ + ]


binaryFate posted 1 year ago Weight: 0 | Link [ + ]

+20 XMR on behalf of

Alex058 posted 1 year ago Weight: 0 | Link [ + ]


esperantomato posted 1 year ago Weight: 0 | Link [ + ]

Donated, massive asset to our community, keep up the great work!