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Blockstack research paper published at USENIX ATC’16 conference

A technical research paper describing the design and implementation of Blockstack’s global naming and storage system was published at the USENIX Annual Technical Conference (ATC) 2016. USENIX ATC is a top-tier publication venue in computer systems and has been attracting some of the leading experts and researchers since 1992.

This work is a collaboration between Prof. Michael J. Freedman at Princeton University and engineers from Blockstack. The paper summarizes lessons from our two-year deployment of a production system, the largest non-financial production system running on the Bitcoin blockchain, and presents the system design of Blockstack.

I’ll present the paper today at 6pm Eastern Time, followed by a poster and demo by Jude Nelson tomorrow. You can read the full paper below:

Blockstack: A Global Naming and Storage System Secured by Blockchains

(slides), (audio)

If you want to cite our work, here is the BibTeX entry:

@inproceedings {196208,
author = {Muneeb Ali and Jude Nelson and Ryan Shea and Michael J. Freedman},
title = {Blockstack: A Global Naming and Storage System Secured by Blockchains},
booktitle = {2016 USENIX Annual Technical Conference (USENIX ATC 16)},
year = {2016},
isbn = {978-1-931971-30-0},
address = {Denver, CO},
pages = {181--194},
url = {},
publisher = {USENIX Association},

At Blockstack, we strongly believe in scientific peer-review. The blockchain industry is still at a very early stage, and a lot of technical challenges have been studied earlier by researchers in the distributed systems and computer security communities. It’s imperative for the blockchain industry to engage with these domain experts and incorporate lessons learned over the past decades.

In addition, we want to introduce the blockchain technology to the distributed systems community and attract more talent to the area. For this, we are giving talks at universities, hosting meetups and birds-of-a-feather sessions.

If you’re attending USENIX this year and want to learn more about blockchains in general or Blockstack in particular, please say hi!

Muneeb Ali

Muneeb Ali

Dr. Muneeb Ali is the founder of Stacks, a decentralized network that brings apps and smart contracts to Bitcoin. He serves as the CEO of Hiro PBC, a Public Benefit Corp that builds developer tools for the Stacks blockchain. He has raised $75 million USD in funding from investors like Union Square Ventures, Y Combinator, Lux Capital, Winklevoss Capital, and others. Hiro (formerly Blockstack PBC) was featured in the CNBC's list of 100 promising startups to watch. Muneeb received his Ph.D. and Masters in Computer Science from Princeton University. His Ph.D. thesis was nominated for the ACM SIGCOMM dissertation award by Princeton University. Muneeb gives guest lectures on cloud computing at Princeton and his research publications have over 1,300 citations. He is one of the main characters in George Gilder's book Life After Google and was a technical advisor to the HBO show Silicon Valley.