Brown CS News

Maurice Herlihy Gives A Keynote At The International Symposium On Stabilization, Safety, And Security Of Distributed Systems And A Seminar Talk At Stevens Institute

    Click the links that follow for more news about Maurice Herlihy and other recent accomplishments by our faculty.

    On October 4, Maurice Herlihy of Brown CS gave a keynote address at the 25th International Symposium on Stabilization, Safety, and Security of Distributed Systems, focusing on how it is necessary to rethink classical correctness conditions for distributed systems when dealing with cross-blockchain transactions.

    Maurice also stated in the talk that classical ACID (Atomicity, Consistency, Isolation, and Durability) properties no longer make sense when participating parties can misbehave in arbitrary ways.

    “Perhaps the most important problem in distributed computing is how mutually-untrusting parties can cooperate to mutually benefit without recourse to trusted third parties, such as courts and police,” says Maurice.

    The next day, Maurice gave a seminar talk at the Schaefer School of Engineering and Science at Stevens Institute of Technology regarding the problem of designing specialized cross-blockchain exchanges like swaps or auctions. Maurice’s talk moved away from constructing complex, ad-hoc protocols and towards describing a universal “state machine replication” protocol that allows programmers to transform a game-tree description of an exchange into a distributed, fault-tolerant protocol. 

    “Cross-chain state machine replication on blockchains is unlike other forms of state machine replication because money transfer is front-and-center, but each chain jealously controls its own local currency,” Maurice adds.

    The symposium keynote address slide deck can be found here and the seminar talk at Stevens can be found here.

    For more information, click the link that follows to contact Brown CS Communications Manager Jesse C. Polhemus.