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Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Cryptocurrency Engineering and Design - Spring 2018

Massachusetts Institute of Technology via YouTube


This course covers the design and functioning of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, emphasizing cryptography, game theory, and network architecture. Students will learn about signatures, hashing, proof of work, mining, transactions, synchronization, wallets, forks, fees, payment channels, Lightning Network, smart contracts, anonymity, alternative consensus mechanisms, and new directions in crypto. The teaching method includes lectures on various topics related to cryptocurrency engineering and design. The intended audience for this course includes individuals interested in understanding the technical aspects of cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology.


1. Signatures, Hashing, Hash Chains, e-cash, and Motivation.
2. Proof of Work and Mining.
3. Signatures.
4. Transactions and the UTXO model.
5. Synchronization Process and Pruning.
6. Wallets and SPV.
7. Catena: Efficient Non-equivocation via Bitcoin.
8. Forks.
10. PoW Recap, Other Fork Types.
11. Fees.
12. Transaction Malleability and Segregated Witness.
13. Payment Channels and Lightning Network.
14. Lightning Network and Cross-chain Swaps.
15. Discreet Log Contracts.
16. MAST, Taproot, Graftroot.
17. Anonymity, Coinjoin and Signature Aggregation.
18. Confidential Transactions.
22. Alternative Consensus Mechanisms.
23. New Directions in Crypto.
24. zkLedger.

Taught by

MIT OpenCourseWare


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