Episode 140: Staking derivatives & DeFi with Alex Evans (and Tarun!)

** Be sure to visit our ZKPodcast subreddit and leave us some questions for the upcoming AMA!**

In this week’s episode, Anna and guest-host / frequent guest Tarun Chitra catch up with Alex Evans, researcher at Placeholder Capital. They dive into the latest in DeFi, a topic that we don't cover too often, but has become hard to ignore. Specifically they discuss the emergence of liquidity farming, the difference between the zkresearch space and the DeFi space, some emerging concepts like AMM and Staking derivatives, and cover a recent report Tarun and Alex published together on the impact of staking derivatives on the security of PoS systems.

Here are a few of the articles and links mentioned in the episode:


Thank you to this week's sponsor Trail of Bits.

Upgradeable contracts are not as safe as you think. Architectures for upgradeability can be flawed, locking contracts, losing data, or sabotaging your ability to recover from an incident. Every contract upgrade must be carefully reviewed to avoid catastrophic mistakes. The GitHub App Crytic now includes a comprehensive suite of 17 upgradeability checks to help you avoid these pitfalls.

This tool allows devs to stress test their upgradeable contracts as they go, saving time and potentially catastrophic headaches down the line.

For more check out their blog post where they describe how to use this tool – https://blog.trailofbits.com/2020/06/12/upgradeable-contracts-made-safer-with-crytic/

So thanks again Trail of Bits


If you like what we do:
Follow us on Twitter – @zeroknowledgefm
Join us on Telegram
Catch us on Youtube
Give us feedback! https://forms.gle/iKMSrVtcAn6BByH6A
Support our Gitcoin Grant
Support us on the ZKPatreon

Or directly here:
ETH: 0xC0FFEE1B5083230a5154F55f253B6b6ae8F29B1a
BTC: 1cafekGa3podM4fBxPSQc6RCEXQNTK8Zz
ZEC: t1R2bujRF3Hzte9ALHpMJvY8t5kb9ut9SpQ

Previous Episodes

Episode 327: Proof Aggregation with Shumo and Yi from NEBRA

In this week’s episode Anna chats with Shumo and Yi from NEBRA. They discuss NEBRA UPA, their Universal Proof Aggregation product. They cover what it takes to incorporate proving systems into NEBRA UPA as well as the benefits that these systems will bring, how developers are meant to interact with them, and future integrations to enable seamless cross-zkRollup applications. They cover prover marketplaces, verification aggregation systems, and the design space that these systems open up.

Bonus: ZK Hack Montreal!

There is no episode this week, but wanted to let you know about the upcoming ZK Hack Montreal event, happening Aug 9-11. Apply now to attend as a hacker and jump into zk

https://www.zkmontreal.com/

Episode 326: MPC & ZK in Ligero and Ligetron

In this week’s episode Anna and Kobi chat with Muthu Venkitasubramaniam and Carmit Hazay from Ligero. They discuss their work on MPC and ZK for the last 20 years and how the research has evolved. They then dive into a nuanced conversation on how MPC & ZK are interrelated. The discuss Ligero, what led to the project and the early phases, as well as the new Ligetron system and how they plan on getting this technology into the wild.

Episode 325: Web Proofs with Tracy from Pluto

In this week’s episode Anna chats with Tracy Livengood, co-founder of Pluto; an applied cryptography org building developer tools which add verifiable data from web data to an on-chain application, using ZK.

They discuss Tracy’s move from being an engineer in Web2, what prompted his move into the decentralized web and how he eventually found his way into the ZK space. He shares the concept of ‘Web Proofs’, and how Pluto can use some of the TLSNotary stack to bring private web data into on-chain applications, as well as a future tool set he hopes to develop with the project.

Episode 324: Discovering New Elliptic Curves with Antonio Sanso and Youssef El Housni

This week, Anna and Nico catch up with Antonio Sanso, Researcher at the Ethereum Foundation and Youssef El Housni, Engineer at ConsenSys and builder of Linea.

They discuss Antonio and Youssef’s new work, Families of prime-order endomorphism-equipped embedded curves on pairing-friendly curves, and dive into Elliptic Curve cryptography, Bandersnatch and Verkle Tries amongst much more, before dissecting what terms in the title of this paper truly mean. After getting into the weeds of cryptographic technicalities, the group explores where this work could be used and what it would enable.

Episode 323: The Role of Reth with Georgios

This week, Anna and Tarun catch up with Georgios Konstantopoulos, CTO of Paradigm and long-standing friend of the ZK Pod!

First they cover the work Georgios has been doing since he last appeared on the show, covering everything from updates on Foundry to the more recent work on Reth. They then dig into what makes it different, what inspires its design, where it is heading and the eventual end goals of the project. They also chat about the general client node landscape, from the ETH 2.0 research days to present day, before diving into discussing different clients from different teams, how this diversity can protect a chain and how each client can differ.

Episode 322: Definitions, Security and Sumcheck in ZK Systems with Justin Thaler

In this week’s episode, Anna and Guillermo catch up with Justin Thaler, Associate Professor at Georgetown and Research Partner at a16z.

The group dive into a handful of points from Justin’s ‘17 Misconceptions about SNARKs’ article, discussing if his views have changed since it was published back in 2023 and whether some points have become common knowledge since the article first rippled through the ZK community. They then dive into his new zkVM Jolt, which was initially described along with Lasso in 2023, but has now been implemented and is open to contributions from the community.

Episode 321: STIR with Gal Arnon & Giacomo Fenzi

In this week’s episode, Anna and Kobi chat with Gal Arnon, Ph.D student from the Weizmann Institute of Science & Giacomo Fenzi, Ph.D. student in the COMPSEC Lab at EPFL.

Gal and Giacomo are amongst the co-authors of ‘STIR: Reed–Solomon Proximity Testing with Fewer Queries’ and in this conversation, they discuss how their research led them to work on these topics and where the thesis for this particular work sparked from. They set the stage by exploring the history of FRI and discussing some hidden nuances in how FRI works. And then they introduce STIR, a system that can be used in place of FRI, which incorporates various optimisations to improve the performance.

Zk white

Subscribe

Subscribe to Zero Knowledge podcast on these links:

Join the conversation:

Newsletters:

Support: