Top domestic blockchain research conference
45 conference members reduced to 30…Recruiting second batch of new members
Chose specialization over diversification…emphasis in research
Primary focus is on making a healthy blockchain ecosystem.
“This will be a block-chain research organization that will go beyond Korea to represent East Asia. In particular, we will not focus only on pure academic research but stay in close proximity to the industrial field and contribute to technological development in actual businesses.”
As Decipher of SNU became the top domestic blockchain conference in only 6 months since its establishment this March, it is now preparing for its leap to the next level by recruiting the second batch of new members. President Jae-yun Kim, who is leading the organization, confidently announced this ambition as he looked back at the past 6 months. President Kim graduated from SNU with a degree in electrical and computer engineering, and is now in the 4th year of MS/Ph.D. integrated program specializing in virtual machines. Having been worked on web browser optimization, his current research is in virtual machine optimization.
After Decipher, which has the meaning of ‘decoding’, was founded by 4~5 SNU students, it currently has around 30 members including undergraduate students, masters and Ph.D. students, postdoctoral students, SNU graduates, and workers. It once had up to 45 members, but by evaluating each person’s amount of contribution to the organization and research progress, 15 people were expelled and it is now looking for a second batch of members.
President Kim explained the background of the organization reconfiguration saying, “We also thought of expanding the scale of the organization, but diversification comes at the cost of specialization. We will continue to focus on research advancement rather than the education of the members.”
Looking back at the achievements of the past 6 months, president Kim said, “The articles of our research progress posted on the online publication website Medium attracted many readers, and some blockchain startups are using our contents as educational resources for their employees.” Also, he highlighted the launching of the regular conference called ‘DE-FERENCE’ as one of the achievements. As the organizer of the conference, which is highly acknowledged for its comparable professionalism to academic events, he said, “Conferences held these days in the field of blockchain only focus on networking between the attendees after some formal presentation by invited speakers talking about unworthy topics. Blockchain technology is not sophisticated enough and is a field of vast potential for research, but not many professionals worry about this.”
Also, Decipher cultivated real blockchain projects. Haechlabs, Decon, Timeblock, and GXC (Game X Coin) are the startups for which members of the organization founded or participated in the foundation. President Kim is dreaming of a successful industry and academic cooperation model, which is meaningful as itself, with Decipher that can stay in close proximity to businesses rather than simply conducting academic research and make a huge contribution to advancement in technology. However, there are still internal debates on the roles and functions of Decipher in the long term. President Kim said, “We are still discussing what Decipher can do when blockchain technology becomes pervasive in our lives. Each of the members has different objectives but when we do what we want, we will get a sense of direction.”
He mentioned that in the United States and China, there are many research centers and conferences lead by universities and Decipher is doing that role in Korea. He said that it will become the best research organization that represents not only Korea but also East Asia. To be able to do this, he promised to build a healthy blockchain ecosystem in Korea by correcting false concepts, providing the right information to many people, and also working on technologies lacking research.
Also, the organization is planning on cooperating with the blockchain industry in the near future. President Kim said, “Since companies have to cover a vast area of research, some parts cannot be tackled relying on internal resources. That is when Decipher comes in.” He indicated that Decipher is indeed receiving deal proposals to work together and soon enough it will start working with an external company on blockchain core technology design.
He is leading the organization, but never stopped deliberating over his academics and career paths. For now, his paper will be published in a conference proceeding between October and November. Also, he plans to research and develop the followings: edge computing with blockchain (providing user service through edge servers with computing power located close to the users), a blockchain payment system mainly for micropayments, and a distributed application (Dapp) related to games. President Kim, who will earn the doctorates degree in two years, said, “I once thought of venture technology, but for now, I have all the possibilities open. Whatever I do will probably be related to blockchain, but since this field of technology is changing so fast, I don’t think I can decide until the time I graduate.”
Translated by Kyungjin Lee, English Editor of Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, firstname.lastname@example.org