Hash Functions for Integrity and Efficiency | Todd Price | #LDNBlockchain23

Discover how hash functions and Merkle trees ensure data integrity and efficiency in Bitcoin. Explore the role of SHA-256 and the concept of selective exposure in securing the blockchain. #LDNBlockchain23

Key takeaways
  • Hash functions are mathematical processes that map a bit string of any length to a bit string of a defined length.
  • Hash functions are used in Bitcoin to ensure data integrity and efficiency.
  • SHA-256 is the dominant hash function used in Bitcoin.
  • SHA-256 maps everything to a 256-bit output.
  • Hash functions are deterministic, meaning that given the same input, they will always generate the same output.
  • Hash functions are one-way, meaning that it is computationally infeasible to find the input that generated a given output.
  • Merkle trees are used in Bitcoin to create a single secure root value from a large number of transactions.
  • Merkle trees are efficient because they allow for selective exposure, meaning that only a small amount of data needs to be verified to ensure the integrity of the entire tree.
  • Hash functions and Merkle trees are used together in Bitcoin to create a system that is both secure and efficient.