I should really pay closer attention to who joins our department. Nikita Borisov apparently just started here this semester and is currently doing work on anonymous peer-to-peer networks. Nick introduced him to Jeff and I today with the intention of giving him some of our spare computers to get his group started.
Afterwards I took a look at his past work and realized he was one of the primary architects for Off-the-Record Messaging that I use in Gaim (Linux/Windows) and AdiumX (OSX). I actually previously mentioned this back when I saw the changelog for AdiumX 0.80. Pretty slick stuff. Provides encryption, authentication, deniability and perfect forward secrecy. All open-source and ties in nicely with the IM clients I was already using. Now if only I could find someone else to use it with me. :)
Regardless, Nikita should be an interesting addition to the department. I certainly look forward to seeing what he’s got to say at seminars and such.