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Upcoming paper: A general framework for blockchain analytics

posted Oct 23, 2017, 9:13 AM by Massimo Bartoletti
Upcoming paper (to be presented at SERIAL 2017)
Massimo Bartoletti, Andrea Bracciali, Stefano Lande, Livio Pompianu

Abstract. Modern cryptocurrencies exploit decentralised blockchains to record a public and unalterable history of transactions. Besides transactions, further information is stored for different, and often undisclosed, purposes, making the blockchains a rich and increasingly growing source of valuable information, in part of difficult interpretation. Many data analytics studies have been carried out, mostly based on specifically designed and ad-hoc engineered approaches. We propose a general-purpose framework, seamlessly supporting data analytics on both Bitcoin and Ethereum — currently the two most prominent cryptocurrencies. Such a framework allows us to integrate relevant blockchain data with data from other sources, and to organise them in a database, either SQL or NoSQL. Our framework is released as an open-source Scala library, a mainstream Java-like programming language. We illustrate the distinguishing features of our approach on a set of significant use cases, which allow us to empirically compare ours to other competing proposals, and evaluate the impact of the database choice on scalability.