Featuring John Pacific, Cryptographic Engineer and Executive Producer of Noise Music @ NuCypher
John Pacific of NuCypher

We’re back for another episode of Builders of the Decentralized Web (BuildersDW). In this series, we’re speaking to the developers, innovators and thinkers working on the foundation of the next internet — the infrastructure for P2P file systems and content-addressed storage, the distributed ledgers for data chronicling, ordering and attribution, the smart contracts for verifiable computation and network governance, the privacy protocols for secure access, sharing and communication — to name but a few.

In other words, BuildersDW is all about the people behind the technology stack of the future.

For our third episode, we stick with the NuCypher team — this time going deep into the absorbing realm of cryptography and cryptographic engineering. Our guest is John Pacific, who at 21 years old is already making a name for himself in the information security and blockchain worlds. He spends his days at NuCypher implementing cryptographic schemes and worrying about security issues.

In a very enjoyable conversation lasting nearly an hour, we cover a wide array of cryptography-related topics. We discuss how adversarial thinking applies to information security, then compare it to machine learning and AI (in particular, game-playing agents). We talk about the high stakes associated with decisions made by security professionals, sometimes resulting in life-or-death outcomes — as well as the relevance of security technology to empowering the individual. We also spend about half an hour delving into Shamir Secret Sharing and Homomorphic Encryption — schemes that may contrast in terms of their practical application today, but are both fascinating and meaningful — particularly in the context of NuCypher technology and the forthcoming decentralized web.