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Lesson 1: Anatomy of the blockchain

Anatomy of the blockchain: Technical fundamentals of blockchain technology with Christopher Georgen.

Chris is head of strategy and financial engineering with fintech startup Topl, a blockchain-based platform for transparent impact investing in developing countries.

Originally from the US, Chris obtained degrees in Mathematics, Physics, and Philosophy from Rice University. During his time in college, Chris performed multidisciplinary research focused on emergent phenomena in complex systems and developed the core economic theories that inspired Topl’s development. He has a deep interest in the application of new technologies to economic and financial problems and is motivated by the potential for new economic systems to improve standards of living around the world.

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With Topl, Chris participated in the Techruption blockchain incubator at Brightlands in Heerlen, and has quickly made a name for himself as a talented speaker in the local blockchain community.

What you’ll learn

How a blockchain is structured, from the bottom up.
What are the fundamental concepts on a technical level and how they interrelate. We’ll cover concepts such as public key cryptography, decentralisation, mining and consensus, hashing, merkle trees, and more. By the end of the lesson you’ll be able to identify the moving parts common to blockchains such as Bitcoin and Ethereum.

How you’ll learn

This lesson is a mixture of interactive presentation and exercises. In the first part of the day, we’ll build a blockchain from the bottom up. I’ll give an interactive presentation that takes us from the foundations to a fully-functioning blockchain. While the presentation gives us a common direction, we’ll be discussing a lot of different concepts, so all the way through you can ask questions and I’ll clarify unclear concepts and connections.

After lunch, we’ll put our knowledge of the blockchain to work. You’ll break into small groups to dissect some cryptocurrencies, identifying their component elements and how they operate. We’ll then discuss as a group how their differ and what these differences actually mean.

Those who have heard about the blockchain and are ready to get down to the details of how it actually works.
It’s recommended that you have studied either math, computer science, or engineering at a post secondary-level or have professional experience in software design or IT as we will be diving deeper than most conceptual discussions on blockchain.

What you need to bring?

A pen and paper, and a mind ready to be blown by the awesomeness of blockchain.

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