This Week in Blockchain Research Issue #114

Issue #114


Issue #114

Paper of the Week:

Paper Title: Blockchain Oracle Design Patterns.


  1. Blockchain is a form of distributed ledger technology (DLT) where data is shared among users connected over the internet. Transactions are data state changes on the blockchain that are permanently recorded in a secure and transparent way without the need of a third party.

  2. Besides, the introduction of smart contracts to the blockchain has added programmability to the blockchain and revolutionized the software ecosystem leading toward decentralized applications (DApps) attracting businesses and organizations to employ this technology.

  3. Although promising, blockchains and smart contracts have no access to the external systems (i.e., off-chain) where real-world data and events resides; consequently, the usability of smart contracts in terms of performance and programmability would be limited to the on-chain data.

  4. Hence, blockchain oracles are introduced to mitigate the issue and are defined as trusted third-party services that send and verify the external information (i.e., feedback) and submit it to smart contracts for triggering state changes in the blockchain.

  5. This paper studies and analyzes blockchain oracles with regard to how they provide feedback to the blockchain and smart contracts.

  6. It classifies the blockchain oracle techniques into two major groups such as voting-based strategies and reputation-based ones.

  7. The former mainly relies on participants’ stakes for outcome finalization while the latter considers reputation in conjunction with authenticity proof mechanisms for data correctness and integrity.

  8. Then it provides a structured description of patterns in detail for each classification and discuss research directions in the end.

AuthorsAmirmohammad Pasdar*†, Zhongli Dong*‡, Young Choon Lee†,

Affiliations: * Aglive Lab, † Macquarie University, and ‡ University of Sydney.


1. Paper Title: Improving security for users of decentralized exchanges through multiparty computation.

Summary: This paper introduces a protocol based upon multiparty computation that allows for the creation of API keys and security policies that can be applied to any existing decentralized exchange.

Authors: Robert Annessi* and Ethan Fast*,

Affiliations* Nash Exchange.

2. Paper Title: IBATCH: Saving Ethereum Fees via Secure and Cost-Effective Batching of Smart-Contract Invocations

Summary: A middleware system running on top of an operational Ethereum network to enable secure batching of smart-contract invocations against an untrusted relay server off-chain.

Authors: Yibo Wang*, Qi Zhang*, Kai Li*, Yuzhe Tang*, Jiaqi Chen*, Xiapu Luo†, and Ting Chen

Affiliations* Syracuse University, † Hong Kong Polytechnic University, and ‡ University of Electronic Science and Technology of China Chengdu.

3. Paper Title: Flash Crash for Cash: Cyber Threats in Decentralized Finance.

Summary: The first overview of in-the-wild DeFi security incidents.

Authors: Kris Oosthoek*,

Affiliations* Delft University of Technology.


1. Paper Title: Anonymous and Distributed Authentication for Peer-to-Peer Networks.

Summary: Three authentication protocols such that the users can authenticate themselves in an anonymous P2P network, without revealing their identities.

Authors: Pasan Tennakoon*, Supipi Karunathilaka*, Rishikeshan Lavakumar*, and Janaka Alawatugoda*,

Affiliations* University of Peradeniya.


1. Paper Title: An Analysis of Transaction Handling in Bitcoin.

Summary: A predictability analysis intended to provide insights on transaction handling such as (i) transaction confirmation time, (ii) block attributes, and (iii) who has created the block.

Authors: Befekadu G. Gebraselase*, Bjarne E. Helvik*, and Yuming Jiang*,

Affiliations* Norwegian University of Science and Technology.


No papers.


1. Paper Title: Stochastic modelling of blockchain consensus.

Summary: By leveraging on random-walk theory, this work models block propagation delay on different network topologies and provides a classification of blockchain systems in terms of two emergent properties.

Authors: Claudio J. Tessone*†, Paolo Tasca‡, and Flavio Iannelli†,

Affiliations* Universitat Zurich and † University College London.


1. Paper Title: STO vs. ICO: A Theory of Token Issues under Moral Hazard and Demand Uncertainty.

Summary: The analysis of economic ideas behind issuing hybrid tokens that have features of both ICOs and STOs.

AuthorsAnton Miglo*,

Affiliations: * University of Salford.

Research Talks:

Upcoming Events:


Thanks to our sponsor

Protocol Labs

The Protocol Labs Research team is pretty enthusiastic about making knowledge free and accessible.  If you want to see some presentations on recent research, they have a public Research Seminar Series.  You can see dozens of previous talks on YouTube, and/or sign up here to get invited to future talks.  And if your talk was featured in this newsletter, and you'd like to present it, they're welcoming requests to speak at Join the Protocol Labs team!

This newsletter is for informational purposes only. This content does not in any way constitute an offer or solicitation of an offer to buy or sell any investment solution or recommendation to buy or sell a security; nor it is to be taken as legal, business, investment, or tax advice. In fact, none of the information in this or other content on zk Capital should be relied on in any manner as advice. None of the authors, contributors, or anyone else connected with zk Capital, in any way whatsoever, can be responsible for your use of the information contained in this newsletter.