SAN FRANCISCO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–A coalition of 22 leading zero-knowledge companies, foundations and funds, including Aleo, Anoma, Ethereum Foundation, Matter Labs, Mina Protocol, Polkadot Prize Pioneers and Polygon, joined by tech giant Advanced Micro Devices (“AMD”) has announced the launch of ZPrice, an industry-sponsored competition offering $7 million in prizes to accelerate zero-knowledge cryptography to enable the technology to help scale blockchain networks. The challenge is inspired by the famous XPrize competitions that have used private contributions to fuel progress in various fields, including spaceflight, adult literacy and ocean health. For the ZPrize, teams will compete for prizes by designing new algorithms and techniques that achieve performance metrics unmatched by the best zero-knowledge systems deployed in the blockchain industry today.
One of the most promising approaches to scaling zero-knowledge technology is to use specialized hardware like graphics processing units (GPUs) or field-programmable gate arrays (FPGAs). ZPrize is therefore collaborating with AMD-Xilinx to provide access to state-of-the-art hardware such as the Varium C1100 blockchain accelerator card for competing teams to develop the best solutions to ZPrize challenges.
“Integrating zero-knowledge cryptography into a blockchain platform is essential for widespread adoption of the technology, but it comes with a significantly increased computational workload,” said Hamid Salehi, director of the Product Marketing, AECG Data Center Group, at AMD. “FPGAs are uniquely positioned to efficiently accelerate the zero-knowledge protocol, at the hardware level, to create scalable blockchain solutions. AMD-Xilinx is proud to support the ZPrize competition with our FPGA-based accelerators to empower the community to create innovative solutions that help advance zero-knowledge technology.
As blockchain technology and Web3 expand into more and more use cases, they face the challenge of scaling to hundreds of millions of users while remaining trustless, secure, and accessible. . Zero-knowledge is a very promising new technology to solve these problems. Since its introduction by ZCash in 2016, the technology has evolved through rapid innovation. This is why industry and academic experts consider it the key to enabling the widespread adoption of Web3 and blockchain technology.
“Espresso Systems is proud to sponsor the ZPrize, an industry-wide collaboration that we believe will be critical in advancing zero-knowledge as a technology,” said Jill Gunter, chief strategy officer of Espresso Systems. “Knowledgeless systems are paving the way for the mass adoption of decentralized applications as they transform the way we interact and transact online and the ZPrize is an important effort to accelerate this progress.”
Teams will compete to win financial rewards in dollars and tokens in a range of categories that sponsors have identified as being of particular importance for the practical application of zero-knowledge systems. Submissions will be judged against existing technical benchmarks, with the highest rewards paid out for the greatest improvements over the current state of the art.
The unique cooperation of competing entities embodied by ZPrize revolves around the common goal of making the widespread application of this technology practical and enabling privacy and scalability in Web 3.0. To this end, the winners of the contest must open their challenge solutions so that the whole community can access them and fully benefit from them.
“The goal of the ZPrize is to spur a leap forward in zero-knowledge cryptography that so many Web3 protocol and application developers have been waiting for to scale their products to millions,” said Alex Pruden, COO of Aleo and founder of the ZPrize. initiative. “The ZPrize sponsors represent not just an industry, but a united community of believers in this technology. We share a collective desire to turn these exciting academic ideas into a deployed reality. With the ZPrize, we are advancing the state of the art to form the bricks of the technological base that will evolve and secure the next generation Web.
ZPrice is modeled after the XPRIZE and other similar competitions and aims to use private funds to accelerate the advancement of zero-knowledge proof technology essential to extend the functionality of blockchain to adapt to many cases of common use. ZPrize sponsors include, in alphabetical order, 0xPARC, Aleo, Algorand, Anomaly, Aztec Protocol, Celo, CoreWeave, DZK, Espresso systems, Ethereum Foundation, Findora, harmony one, Kora, Manta Network, Mina Protocol, Material laboratories, the Polkadot Pioneer Award, Capital Polychain, Polygon, RISC0, Hatch Tech, Zero Knowledge Validator
Anyone with an academic or industrial background in math, cryptography, electrical engineering, hardware engineering, or optimization is encouraged to apply to contribute to the next wave of blockchain innovation. More information can be found at https://www.zprize.io/.