TCC 2008, Day 2

IACR LogoToday was the second day of the Theory of Cryptography Conference, being held this year at the Courant Institute at NYU. In the morning there was a series of talks on the relationship between game theory and cryptography. There’s been a lot of work relating economics, game theory, and computer science in the last decade or so, including the breakthrough result by Chen and Deng that 2-player Nash Equilibrium is PPAD-complete (see here). In relation to cryptography, we heard mainly about two lines of work. First, there is the question of understanding what resources are necessary to achieve correlated equilibria without a trusted third party; it was shown by Izmalkov, Micali, and Lepinski (see e.g. here) that the “sealed envelopes and ballot box” paradigm is sufficient to achieve correlated equilibria. Second, there is a long line of work on trying to achieve fairness in secure multiparty computation: namely how do you assure all parties that they will get an output, even if someone aborts their computation early? The paper presented today on this topic was about fair secret sharing, by Kol and Naor (see here).

Silvio MicaliBUT the funniest part of todays talk was when someone asked Silvio Micali why we should care about the sealed envelopes and ballot box paradigm if it can’t be implemented over the Internet, to which Silvio asked, “Well we can’t have sex over the Internet, so why do we care about sex?” Which of course led to the comment, “Well you can find sex over the Internet” and… well… I’ll stop there.

The other highlight of the day was watching a bunch of computer scientists do the YMCA, or, in this case, the IACR. I’ll let the picture speak for itself.

Do the IACR.
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~ by therandomoracle on March 20, 2008.

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