A time capsule by MIT – this 20-year-old cryptographic puzzle is now solved

We all know about the Bitcoin treasure hunts and cryptocurrency puzzles that the community is regularly “facing”. Recently, Leaprate reported about the Satoshi Treasure Hunt – a $1 million-venture. 

Now, a 20-year-old cryptographic puzzle has been solved and recorded the blockchain of Bitcoin Cash. The information comes from Bitcoin News online magazine. Amazingly, the puzzle has been solved around 15 years earlier than the creator had previously anticipated.

The puzzle was created back in April, 1999 from several cryptographers of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). The group of scientists predicted that the puzzle they created will take 35 years to solve.

However, one self-taught programmer from Belgium took three and a half years to solve the puzzle and at the end, he cracked it. His name is Bernard Fabrot.

The Computer Science & Artificial Intelligence Lab at MIT explained what the puzzle actually consisted of, commenting:

The puzzle essentially involves doing roughly 80 trillion successive squarings of a starting number, and was specifically designed to foil anyone trying to solve it more quickly by using parallel computing

Another engineer, Simon Peffers also published his solution to the puzzle. The two engineers and their teams worked through different approaches to solve the conundrum, but basically arrived at the same correct solution.

On the other hand, this is what MIT professor Ron Rivest (he announced the puzzle back in 1999) said:

“There have been hardware and software advances beyond what I predicted in 1999. The puzzle’s fundamental challenge of doing roughly 80 trillion squarings remains unbroken, but the resources required to do a single squaring have been reduced by much more than I predicted.

In honour of the puzzle being solved, MIT releases a time capsule created by by the famous architect Frank Gehry. The capsule is filled with historical artifacts from Bill Gates and the inventor of the Web – Tim Berners-Lee, as well as Ethernet co-inventor Bob Metcalfe.

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