March 05 - 06, 2016

Location: Building E52: The Samberg Center

→ Livestream Day2 ←

2016 Expo Speakers

This page will be updated as more speakers confirm

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Pindar Wong
Chairman, VeriFi (Hong Kong) Ltd

Pindar Wong is an internet pioneer, who co-founded the first licensed Internet Service Provider in Hong Kong in 1993. He is the Chairman of VeriFi (Hong Kong) Ltd, a discrete Internet Financial Infrastructure consultancy. In 2015, he helped organise Asia's first Blockchainworkshops.org and Phase 1 and 2 of ScalingBitcoin.org. Pindar serves on the School of Engineering Advisory Committee HKUST, the Technical Advisory Board of the Packet Clearing House and Editorial Advisory Board of the Internet Protocol Journal. Previously, he was the first Vice-Chairman of ICANN, Chairman of the Asia Pacific Internet Association, alternate Chairman of Asia Pacific Network Information Center, Chairman of APRICOT and elected Trustee of the Internet Society.After helping to introduce Creative Commons to HK in 2008, he stood down as the Co-Public Lead of Creative Commons Hong Kong in 2014. From 2010-2015 he served on the Digital 21 Strategy Advisory Committee of the Hong Kong Government and the Task Force on Industry Facilitation. He graduated with First Class Honours in Computing Science from Imperial College London and was a Sir Edward Youde Research Fellow.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Shaul Kfir
CTO, Digital Asset Holdings

Shaul is the CTO of Digital Asset Holdings. Formerly he was a software engineer with a background in research cryptography at SCIPR cryptography lab and a visiting scientist at MIT CSAIL, where he gained extensive experience implementing cryptographic protocols in the field of Zero Knowledge Proofs and Computational Privacy and Integrity. He served as CTO for two previous startups in Tel Aviv. Prior to his involvement in cryptography, Shaul served as a Lieutenant Commander in the Israeli Navy, leading diverse technical teams across challenging environments. Digital Asset Holdings builds distributed, encrypted straight through processing tools in order to increase efficiency, security, compliance and settlement speed.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Melanie Shapiro
CEO, Case

Melanie is the CEO and founder of Case, a provider of advanced cryptographic key management services. Case is a dedicated device that ties physical identity and location to secure transaction signing. Prior to Case, Melanie co-founded Digsby, a messaging platform for managing online social identities, which was acquired in 2011. Melanie has a PhD in Consumer Behavior, and studied technology adoption behavior at Microsoft.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

David Vorick
CEO, Sia

David is a graduate of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, where he studied Computer Science, finished his degree in three years, and graduated with honors. He has been following computer security trends since the age of 15. David has previously interned at IBM where he worked on the mainframe operating system, and turned down a job offer from Google after graduation in order to pursue Sia.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Sam Rosenblum
Head of Americas and Asia Pacific, Coinbase

Sam Rosenblum is Head of Americas and Asia Pacific at Coinbase. Coinbase makes it easy to securely exchange funds from traditional finance system into and out of bitcoin. Today, Coinbase provides access to bitcoin for over 3 million users across 32 countries. Prior to joining Coinbase, Sam was an M&A specialist at the U.S Department of Justice's Antitrust Division, worked in hedge fund investment strategy at Lake Partners, and worked in the global strategy group at Visa.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Joseph Poon
Co-Author, Lightning Network

Joseph Poon the co-author of The Lightning Network, a decentralized Bitcoin transaction system which uses Bitcoin's smart contract scripting mechanism to conduct millions to billions of transactions per second without trusted custodians.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Christian Lundkvist
Senior Technologist/Strategist

Christian started his career as a mathematician doing research in Algebraic Geometry, followed by a deep dive into quantitative finance developing and implementing derivatives pricing models at Bloomberg. After venturing down the Bitcoin rabbit hole he discovered Ethereum and ConsenSys. Christian is now working on a diverse set of projects including accounting systems, document signing, wallets, and various financial applications. He also maintains a general overview of ConsenSys projects and provides technical expertise when needed. When not in the Blockchain world Christian enjoys scuba diving in the waters of the NorthEast US.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Kathleen Breitman
Strategy Associate, R3

Kathleen Breitman is a Strategy Associate at R3, a fintech innovation firm currently managing a distributed ledger consortium of 42 global banks. Before joining R3, Kathleen worked at Accenture within their fintech/blockchain practice and at Bridgewater as an analyst. She gained her first exposure to blockchain technology through Tezos, a cryptocurrency project she conducted with her husband in 2014. Kathleen holds a degree from Cornell University

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Jeremy Rubin
Masters student, MIT

Jeremy is an Computer Science Senior and Masters student at MIT. He came onto the bitcoin scene with Tidbit, a system to replace web ads with cryptocurrency mining (;no longer fighting NJ) and the MIT Bitcoin Project which gave every MIT student $100. Jeremy co-founded the MIT Digital Currency initiative and recently served as program chair of Scaling Bitcoin Montreal this past fall.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Josh Cincinnati
Developer Advocate, BlockCypher

Josh Cincinnati is BlockCypher’s Developer Advocate and second employee. He previously co-founded an Android application startup, and was a technical Product Manager for the Washington Post's innovation group, Wapo Labs. He received degrees in Mathematics and Political & Social Thought from the University of Virginia and an MBA from Stanford University. For fun (beyond the fun of bitcoin), he does amateur stand-up and writes satire. And yes, in this photo, the Bitcoin whitepaper is printed on his t-shirt.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Guy Zyskind
Co-founder, Enigma

Guy Zyskind is a co-founder of Enigma, a blockchain-based technology that enables computing on encrypted data. He is currently researching blockchain and distributed systems security in his graduate studies at MIT, where he also teached the first blockchain engineering class. Guy has authored several academic papers, most recently on privacy and the blockchain, including the Enigma whitepaper and “Decentralizing Privacy: Using Blockchain to Protect Personal Data” that recently appeared in IEEE SPW 15’. Last year, he worked on the Ethos project, enabling decentralized identity, which won the grand prize in the MIT Bitcoin Competition. Guy has over 10 years of experience in the software industry. Before coming to MIT, he led the development of several start-up companies. Most notably, he was the Chief Technology Officer at Athena Wisdom (now Endor), an MIT Media Lab spin-off company. Guy obtained his B.S. in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from Tel-Aviv University.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Jonas Schnelli
Core Developer, Bitcoin

Jonas is one of the five Bitcoin Core Developer with code merge rights. He has added mored then 20,000 lines of code during the last 3 years. He is also a Co-Founder of Digitalbitbox.com, a hardware wallet company based in Switzerland. Jonas has more than 20 years of experience in software engineering and has founded serval companies during that time.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Meltem Demirors
Director of Community, Digital Currency Group

Meltem Demirors is Digital Currency Group’s Director of Community. In her role, she focuses on managing DCG’s portfolio of 60 investments in 20 countries, collaborating with DCG’s investors to translate bitcoin and blockchain technology into their organizations, and strengthening DCG’s broader network in the industry, with corporate partners and institutions, and with regulators and policymakers. Prior to joining DCG, she was in graduate school at MIT, and worked in corporate treasury and management consulting focused on the Oil & Gas industry.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Eric Piscini
Principal, Deloitte Consulting LLP

Eric Piscini is a principal in Deloitte Consulting LLP’s Technology and Banking practice. He has 20 years of experience defining IT strategies and delivering technology transformation programs. He serves large and regional financial institutions and banking regulators in core aspects of their technology environment. Eric has significant experience in IT strategy, information security, technology infrastructure, IT operations, post-merger integrations, mobile channel strategy, mobile banking and payment, enterprise architecture and large program implementations. With a focus on digital technologies, Eric is leading innovation workshops for his clients designing new customer experiences, products and services to support their growth agenda. Eric leads the Deloitte global crypto currency community (dc3), leading financial institutions and retailers in their blockchain adoption journey and developing innovative solutions. Eric speaks and writes on the topic of payments and blockchain. He earned a Masters in Computer Science from University of Paris 6 and a Bachelor degree in Economics from University of Cergy, France.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Ben Peters
Co-founder and CTO, Bitso

Ben holds a Bachelor of Computer Science and a Master of Advanced Computer Science from the University of Manchester. He has over 18 years of experience in technology and is in charge of Bitso’s platform. Prior to Bitso he co-founded and was the CTO of Petromedia, which was acquired by McGraw Hill Financial in 2015.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

James D'Angelo
Founder and host, World Bitcoin Network

James D'Angelo is a political researcher, ex-NASA scientist and the founder and host of World Bitcoin Network, a philosophical/educational channel focusing on the ramifications and technology of Bitcoin. He incorporated blockchain technology in his award winning climate solution SnoCaps as well as his identity system idchains. Currently he spends his days investigating the corrosive impacts of the sunshine laws of the 1970s and is the world’s most vocal anti-transparency proponent “corruption needs accountability.” He is also an avid commentator on Bitcoin governance.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Alex Zinder
Director of Global Software Development, Nasdaq

Alex Zinder is the Director of Global Software Development for Nasdaq. In his current position he is responsible for leading several innovative technology initiatives including Nasdaq Linq – a blockchain enabled platform for managing unregistered securities. Alex has spent more than a decade in the FinTech space building cutting-edge financial applications ranging from market simulations to low latency web trading platforms for both startup ventures and enterprises.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Alex Tapscott
CEO and founder, Northwest Passage Ventures

Alex Tapscott is the co-author (with Don Tapscott) of the upcoming book Blockchain Revolution: How the Technology Behind Bitcoin is Changing Money, Business and the World. Alex is also the CEO and Founder of Northwest Passage Ventures, an advisory firm building early stage blockchain companies. In 2014 he researched and wrote the seminal report on governing digital currencies for the Global Solutions Network program at the Rotman School of Management. Prior to founding Northwest Passage Ventures, he worked for seven years in investment banking in New York and Toronto. Alex is a graduate of Amherst College (Cum laude) and is a CFA Charterholder.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Jeremy Clark
Assistant Professor, Concordia Institute for Information Systems Engineering

Jeremy Clark is an Assistant Professor at the Concordia Institute for Information Systems Engineering in Montreal. During his PhD at the University of Waterloo, he helped design and deploy voting systems that can cryptographically prove the tally is correct. One system, Scantegrity, was the first such system to be used in a real government election (and, little-known fact: the first to use the blockchain). His research on Bitcoin spans time-stamping (CommitCoin), decentralized prediction markets, proofs of solvency (Provisions), anonymity (Mixcoin), and usability. Recently, he has worked on systemizing knowledge on Bitcoin, as well as contextualizing the history of digital cash prior to Bitcoin's emergence.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Peter Todd
Core Developer, Bitcoin

Peter Todd is a leading expert on Bitcoin and blockchain technologies. He is best known as a Bitcoin core developer, with a deep expertise in the security properties of the bitcoin network and other decentralized technologies. His specialties are performing security audits of blockchain projects, and designing blockchain application architectures.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Sergio Demian Lerner
Cofounder, RSK Labs

Sergio is a computer security and cryptocurrency researcher, inventor, and serial entrepreneur. In 2015 he co-founded RSK Labs, the company developing the Rootstock Smart Contract platform. Prieviously he co-founded several actively growing companies such as Coinspect (specializing in auditing the information security of Bitcoin startups and cryptocurrencies), Coinfabrik (a cryptocurrency software factory), IdentivaSecurity (developing a revolutionary web authentication token). In 2011 he joined the Bitcoin community and collaborated to strengthen the security of the Bitcoin Core by responsible disclosing 9 vulnerabilities. He also proposed more than 50 design improvements for greater privacy, interoperability, decentralization, scalability, and faster payments. However, he became widely known in the Bitcoin community when a data mining research he performed uncovered the accounts believed to belong to Satoshi. In early 2013, he created QixCoin, the first Turing-complete coin. He periodically tweets at @SDLerner and blogs at bitslog.com.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Arvind Narayanan
Assistant Professor of Computer Science, Princeton

Arvind Narayanan (Ph.D. 2009) is an Assistant Professor of Computer Science at Princeton. Narayanan leads the Princeton Web Transparency and Accountability project that aims to uncover how companies are collecting and using our personal information. He also leads a research group studying the security, anonymity, and stability of Bitcoin and cryptocurrencies. His doctoral research showed that data anonymization is broken in fundamental ways, for which he jointly received the 2008 Privacy Enhancing Technologies Award. You can follow him on Twitter at @random_walker.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Cory Fields
Core Developer, Bitcoin

Cory is a Bitcoin Core developer who works to maintain and improve development and deployment workflows. His work typically revolves around build procedures and long-term code-base maintainability. For the Bitcoin Core project, he focuses on the build-system, continuous integration, automated regression testing, modularization, and the deterministic release process. Cory is an outspoken proponent of Free and open-source software with code contributions to dozens of projects. He is currently employed by the MIT Media Lab as developer as part of their Digital Currency Initiative. Prior to that he was a developer for the Bitcoin Foundation. Before his work on Bitcoin, Cory served on the board of the XBMC Foundation while working as a lead developer and project manager for the XBMC Media Center software (now called Kodi).

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Justin Newton
CEO, Netki

Justin is an early Internet pioneer and startup veteran. He founded ISPC, the first trade association for Internet providers in 1996. Justin served as their Public Policy Director where he played a key role in ensuring the Internet Tax Freedom, the Communications Decency, the Digital Copyright, and the CAN-SPAM Acts aided the Internet industry’s growth while ensuring the security and privacy of its users. He served on the Advisory Council for ARIN: multinational registry for IP addresses. As CEO of Netki, Justin is working on products which foster the mass-market adoption of blockchain technology. Netki’s Wallet Name Service allows users to link multiple wallet addresses via an easy to share Wallet Name. Prior to founding Netki, Justin created technologies responsible for over $1.5 billion in new revenue and savings at various start-ups, including AboveNet, NetZero, Demand Media and Blackline. Justin serves on the Board of Directors for Adra.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Dave Weissburg
Product Designer and Design Thinker, Fidelity

Dave Weissburg is a Product Designer and Design Thinker with over 25 years of experience at Polaroid and IDEO. He has a BSME and MSME from MIT ‘85/’87. Dave joined the Fidelity Labs Design Thinking team in October 2014.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Chelsea Barabas
Head of Social Innovation, Digital Currency Initiative

Chelsea Barabas is currently the Head of Social Innovation at the Digital Currency Initiative. She recently graduated from MIT, where she researched emerging civil rights issues related to the application of machine learning methods to human resource management practices in the U.S. This work naturally led to Chelsea’s work and interest in digital currencies as a new form of trust infrastructure for the Internet. At the Digital Currency Initiative she is leading the effort to collaborate with hackers, development organizations and civil society groups to build applications on the blockchain that address a broad range of social issues, such as secure identity and consumer-driven data practices, transparency in fiscal governance, and financial inclusion for the unbanked. Prior to MIT, Chelsea lived and worked in East Africa and South America where she collaborated with rural social entrepreneurs to incubate and scale products and services that improved their customers' quality of life.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Gurvinder Ahluwalia
CTO, Cloud Technical Solutioning unit at IBM

Gurvinder Ahluwalia is currently CTO of the Cloud Technical Solutioning unit at IBM covering North America. He has stewarded the industry and clients through change over our recent three computing eras: Distributed Computing era, Internet/Mobile era, and current Cloud Services era. Part of his passion in technology’s service to business and society brings him to distributed consensus technologies and Blockchain. Guri is immersed in shaping the role of Blockchain as a platform to transfer assets, source trust and truth, and run smart contracts across industry use cases. He is a frequent speaker on Cloud, IoT, and Blockchain. Gurvinder is based in Dallas and is a Member of the IBM Academy of Technology. He can be reached at gurvinder.ahluwalia@us.ibm.com or @guriahluwalia.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Veena Pureswaran
Global Electronics Industry Leader, IBM

Veena Pureswaran is the Global Electronics Industry Leader in the IBM Institute for Business Value. She has held leadership positions in electronics product development, strategy and management. In her current role, she is responsible for leading thought leadership research for the electronics industry. She has managed global IBV research studies on technology strategy and economic impact of 3D Printing, the Internet of Things and most recently, the Blockchain, and has presented her research findings in major industry conferences in Asia, Europe and North America. Veena can be reached at vpures@us.ibm.com

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Mark Friedenbach
Core Tech Engineer, Blockstream

Mark Friedenbach is a core tech engineer and project manager at Blockstream, where he specializes in block chain scalability, programmable extensibility, and privacy enhancing extensions to the core Bitcoin protocol. His recent contributions to Bitcoin Core include implementations of BIPs 68 and 112 which provide relative lock-time transaction semantics and an associated script opcode, a necessary component of scalable off-chain solutions such as Lightning. His current research is on generalized programmable signature systems with application to Bitcoin sidechains and other decentralized web of trust applications.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Bradley Kam
CEO, Talkable

Brad is a serial entrepreneur and CEO at Talkable, a Y Combinator backed marketing company. He is an advisor to bitcoin companies such as Datt, a decentralized content network.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Latanya Sweeny
Professor of Government and Technology, Harvard University

Latanya Arvette Sweeney is a Professor of Government and Technology in Residence at Harvard University and the Director of the Data Privacy Lab in the Institute of Qualitative Social Science (IQSS) at Harvard. She formerly served as the Chief Technologist of the Federal Trade Commission, a position she has held since January 2014. She has made several contributions to privacy technology. Her best known academic work is on the theory of k-anonymity and she is credited with the observation that "87% of the U.S. population is uniquely identified by date of birth, gender, postal code."

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Raghav Chawla
Product Manager, Fidelity Labs

Raghav Chawla is an Electrical Engineer from Georgia Tech. He is a futurist and has been a bitcoin enthusiast since 2009. Presently he is a Product Manager at Fidelity Labs, leading multiple POCs in the bitcoin/blockchain space. Previously he managed a program to accelerate innovation for all business units at Fidelity, encompassing 10,000 associates across 4 countries.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Andrew Poelstra
Main Developer, Elements Alpha

Andrew has been programming computers since he was four years old, and has taken an interest in cryptography since 13. Today he is a main developer of the libsecp256k1 high-performance ECC library as well as the sidechain Elements Alpha.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Ted Shabecoff
Founder, Germinal Fund

Ted Shabecoff is a student of Economics and Government at Wesleyan University and founder of Germinal Fund, a 501 c3 that extends crowdfunded loans to small business owners. He is currently working with a startup, Venture Equity Exchange, to build distributed financial and corporate governance applications on top of the Ethereum Blockchain.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Dean Masley
Executive Director, BEN

Dean Masley is the executive director of the Blockchain Education Network, a global network of local bitcoin and blockchain communities that collaborate on global projects to further the blockchain grassroots education movement. Also, Dean is the co-founder of Unsung.org, the sharing economy solution to solving hunger in the US. #HackHunger

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Michael Gord
Founder, Bitcoin Canada

Michael Gord is the founder of Bitcoin Canada and the McGill Cryptocurrency Club. While at McGill, Michael organized the Bitcoin Airdrop events where he gave hundreds of students their first bitcoin.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Dominik Schiener
Independent Developer

Dominik is a Developer and Entrepreneur from Italy currently working on Blockchain-based solutions for eGovernance and International Trade. He's also working on Digital Identity (http://composui.com) as well as new decision-making solutions (Liquid Democracy). He won the 2016 Shanghai Blockchain Hackathon organized by Deloitte and Wanxiang.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Nchinda^2
Executive Director, MITBTC Expo

Nchinda is an undergraduate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) studying computer and political science. As an officer for the MIT Bitcoin Club he spends his time researching and developing decentralized applications and neocurrencies. He has a strong background in altruism as a former member of the National Youth Leadership Council and during high school co-founded a non-profit, Lead2Change Milwaukee. His persona exists as much in physical as in electronic mediums as Firescar96.

MIT BITCOIN EXPO

Doge Doggie
Original Shibe, Dogecoin

Doge

2016 Expo Schedule

Exact times and titles subject to minor change

DAY 1

Time

Topic

Speakers

9:00 - 10:00 Setup
10:00 - 10:55 Registration/Brunch
10:55 - 11:00 Welcome Nchinda^2
11:00 - 11:20 Opening Words Cory Fields
11:20 - 11:40 The Scaling Debate is a Proxy Battle Over Centralization James D'Angelo
11:40 - 12:20 Improvements to Bitcoin Andrew Polestra Jonas Schnelli Joseph Poon Mark Friedenbach
12:20 - 13:05 An Economy of Things: A Visionary Architecture and Monetization of Devices with Blockchain Veena Pureswaran Gurvinder Ahluwalia
13:05 - 13:40 Rootstock Sergio Lerner
13:40 - 14:35 LUNCH AND NETWORKING BREAK
14:35 - 15:05 Lessons for Bitcoin from the 150-year History of Decentralization Arvind Narayanan
15:05 - 15:25 Fraud Proofs and Modularized Validation Peter Todd
15:25 - 15:50 Sia David Vorick
15:50 - 16:20 Fidelity: Bitcoin usability & scaling Dave Weissburg Raghav Chawla
16:20 - 16:45 Identity Christian Lundkvist
16:45 - 17:00 Break (no refreshments)
17:00 - 17:30 Building Bitcoin Infrastructure: An IaaS Perspective Josh Cincinnati
17:30 - 17:50 Forked to Death: What Internet Governance can learn from Bitcoin Pindar Wong
17:50 - 17:55 Wrap up Nchinda^2

DAY 2

Time

Topic

Speakers

9:00 - 10:00 Setup
10:00 - 10:55 Registration/Brunch
10:55 - 11:00 Introduction and Overview Nchinda^2
11:00 - 11:20 Opening Words Latanya Sweeny
11:20 - 11:45 Blockchain Revolution Alex Tapscott
11:45 - 12:05 NASDAQ Linq Alex Zinder
12:05 - 12:25 R3 Kathleen Breitman
12:25 - 13:00 Bitcoin and Traditional Finance Eric Piscini Kathleen Breitman Melanie Shapiro Alex Zinder Shaul Kfir
13:00 - 13:50 Student Research Michael Gord Dominik Schlener Ted Shabecoff Dean Masley
13:50 - 14:50 LUNCH AND NETWORKING BREAK
14:50 - 15:30 Emerging Markets Meltem Sam Rosenblum Ben Peters Chelsea Barbaras
15:30 - 15:55 Enigma Guy Zyskind
15:55 - 16:15 Why bitcoin needs a massive block size increase Bradley Kam
16:15 - 16:30 Break (no refreshments)
16:30 - 16:50 Blockchain-based voting: potential and limitations Jeremy Clark
16:50 - 17:10 Approaches to identity for blockchains Justin Newton
17:10 - 17:30 The Closer Jeremy Rubin
17:30 - 17:35 Wrap up Nchinda^2

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