Fermat’s Library: Electronic Lottery Tickets as Micropayments

This week’s paper is “Electronic Lottery Tickets as Micropayments” published by Ronald L. Rivest in 1997. In this paper Rivest explores the idea of using lottery tickets as currency. The main idea is that instead of making a payment of 1 cent by having a bank wire 1 cent to an account you can issue a $1 lottery ticket that has a 1/100 chance of winning. This paper explores how you could build a payment system around this insight.

With the rise of cryptocurrencies this 20 year old paper becomes ever more interesting and fun to read.

Read the paper here: http://fermatslibrary.com/s/electronic-lottery-tickets-as-micropayments


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