Mike Stay

I am the CTO of Pyrofex, a tech consulting company. My latest paper reports on the implementation of a new differential meet-in-the-middle ciphertext-only attack on the Zip cipher I created to recover a large quantity of Bitcoin for a client. It is an exponential improvement over my first attack on the cipher from 20 years ago. Before that, my recent research mainly focused on two areas: blockchain technology and the formal semantics of concurrent programming languages. I designed a stablecoin around Pedersen commitments that also allows exchanges to comply with federal KYC/AML requirements. One of our staff engineers and I designed a proof-of-stake-and-bandwidth ledger system that runs 50,000 times faster than Bitcoin while providing true finalization. In my semantics research, I am interested in developing frameworks to prove properties about concurrent code like safety and liveness, bounds on the authority of code to cause side-effects, and security properties. Earlier research includes work in cryptanalysis—including coauthoring the paper with the best attack on AES until 2009—algorithmic information theory, quantum computation, higher category theory, and number theory.

Learn more at: https://math.ucr.edu/~mike/

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