I did work at Microsoft for about a year after leaving ZKS, but I quit a month or so ago (working for another startup again).
But for accuracy while I was at Microsoft I was not part of the microsoft research/academic team that worked on penny black, though I did exchange a few emails related to that project and hashcash etc with the researchers. I thought the memory-bound approaches discussed on CAMRAM before were along the lines of hash functions which chewed off artificially large code foot-print as a way to impose the need for memory. Arnold Reinhold's HEKS  (Hash Extended Key Stretcher) key stretching algorithm is related also. HEKS aims to make hardware attacks on key stretching more costly: both by increasing the memory footprint required to efficiently compute it, and by requiring operations that are more expensive in silicon (32 bit multiplies, floating point is another suggestion he makes). The relationship to hashcash is you could simply use HEKS in place of SHA1 to get the desired complexity and hence silicon cost increase. "The main design goal of this algorithm is to make massively parallel key search machines it as expensive as possible by requiring many 32-bit multiplies and large amounts of memory." I think I also recall discussing with Peter Gutmann the idea of using more complex hash functions (composed of existing hash functions for security) to increase the cost of hardware attacks. The innovation in the papers referred to by the Penny Black project was the notion of building a cost function that was limited by memory bandwidth rather CPU speed. In otherwords unlike hashcash (which is CPU bound and has minimal working memory or code footprint) or a notional hashcash built on HEKS or other similar system (which is supposed to take memory and generaly expensive operations to build in silicon), the two candidate memory-bound functions are designed to be computationally cheap but require a lot of random access memroy utilization in a way which frustrates time-space trade-offs (to reduce space consumption by using a faster CPU). They then argue that this is desirable because there is less discrepency in memory latency between high end systems and low end systems than there is discrepency in CPU power. The 2nd memory  bound paper (by Dwork, Goldber and Naor) finds a flaw in in the first memory-bound function paper (by Adabi, Burrows, Manasse, and Wobber) which admits a time-space trade-off, proposes an improved memory-bound function and also in the conclusion suggests that memory bound functions may be more vulnerable to hardware attack than computationally bound functions. Their argument on that latter point is that the hardware attack is an economic attack and it may be that memory-bound functions are more vulnerable to hardware attack because you could in their view build cheaper hardware more effectively as the most basic 8-bit CPU with slow clock rate could marshall enough fast memory to under-cut the cost of general purpose CPUs by a larger margin than a custom hardware optimized hashcash/computationally bound function. I'm not sure if their conclusion is right, but I'm not really qualified -- it's a complex silicon optimization / hardware acceleration type question. Adam  http://world.std.com/~reinhold/HEKSproposal.html  Abadi, Burrows, Manasse and Wobber "Moderately Hard, Memory-bound Functions", Proceedings of the 10th Annual Network and Distributed System Security Symposium, February 2003 http://research.microsoft.com/research/sv/PennyBlack/demo/memory-final-ndss.pdf  Dwork, Goldberg, and Naor, "On Memory-Bound Functions for Fighting Spam", Proceedings of the 23rd Annual International Cryptology Conference (CRYPTO 2003), August 2003. http://research.microsoft.com/research/sv/PennyBlack/demo/lbdgn.pdf On Fri, Dec 26, 2003 at 09:13:23AM -0800, Steve Schear wrote: > http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/3324883.stm > > Adam Back is part of this team, I think. > > Similar approach to Camram/hahscash. Memory-based approaches have been > discussed. Why hasn't Camram explored them? > > steve --------------------------------------------------------------------- The Cryptography Mailing List Unsubscribe by sending "unsubscribe cryptography" to [EMAIL PROTECTED]