What is "Universal Hash Time" which is presented by Jeff Coleman at DEVCON1?

  1. What is the purpose?
  2. What is the problem it will solve?
  3. What is the solution?
  4. How does it work?

Universal Hash Time is a proof of existence service that you can build on top of a blockchain.

To further answer your questions:

  1. Purpose: it proves that some data existed at the time a block that includes the hash of the said data was generated
  2. Problem solved: proof of existence can be a service in itself, but it can also enable broader services such as verifiable audit trail and registries. Knowing that something occurred at at an agreed time is key to the operation of such services.
  3. and 4. Solution: every block in a blockchain includes a hash of the data associated with a verified transaction and a timestamp representing the time when the block was created. The blockchain data structure also enforces an immutable sequence of blocks (proving temporal order), since each block includes the hash of the previous leaf block.

The principles are very similar to linked timestamping, with the added benefit of publishing the result on a data structure that serves as a digital trust platform (i.e. blockchain) instead of relying on a trusted third party (newspaper in the wikipedia example)

  • 4
    This isn't quite right. Universal Hash Time is about combining all possible proof of existence services in existence into one master "time DAG" which collects all time information on the planet. I'll try and give a proper answer when I get a chance. Apr 18 '17 at 22:09

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