Okay. Let’s do this. I just finished reading my first blockchain book. So, I’m out here, grinding, at 8:30P.M. for YOU. I want to get YOU as pumped as I am about blockchain. I want to educate YOU. And yes, I did change my name to Horea Blockchain. You’re probably not surprised though, since an Iced Tea company changed their name to Long Blockchain . So, I can do it too, right? Anyways. Let’s get this show on the road. Let me summarize what I learned from my first book on blockchain, so you don’t have to read it. But if you feel like reading, the book is called Blockchain for Dummies, and it’s FREE. 10⁄10.
Using blockchain, we can keep track of every bolt used to make this aircraft in real time.
Why is blockchain revolutionary?
At the real core of blockchain, without all those fancy, ridiculous buzzwords, blockchain is really a few things.
Car insurance on blockchain will speed up the claim process.
- Real time. One of the biggest advantages of using blockchain is seeing updates in real time. Think of working on a group project in which you have to make changes to a document. Think of using Google Docs, where changes are shown to ALL PARTICIPANTS THAT HAVE ACCESS, in real time. You don’t have to send over a word doc, and then make changes, and send it back and forth. No, that was the 20th century. Now we have real time updates. Not only that, but you can see the FULL REVISION HISTORY, and the time at which updates were made. Google docs was really the first implementation of blockchain technology, not Bitcoin…(haha)!
- Automation. Smart contracts enable transactions to happen instantaneously, because once certain conditions that are pre-programmed are met, the transaction executes. We’ll get into this later with a car insurance example.
- Increased transparency. Imagine the complex system and processes that an airplane has to go through before it is ready for commercial use. Now imagine being able to trace every last bolt in the aircraft to the point where you know the manufacturer, exact time and date, and batch number. This means that recalls on products are specific, rather than cross-fleet. Not only that, but there is more trust in the aircraft, since everyone knows where the individual pieces came from.
Blockchain in 2018
So now that we have an idea behind the benefits of blockchain, let’s talk about how it’s being used in industry today. Let’s talk finance. IBM provides financing to its global partners, which enables businesses to purchase goods and services on credit. IBM has over 4,000 partners, each using different systems. The information is now stored on-chain, with the intent of:
‘Complete visibility of the order-to-delivery pipeline’ — Blockchain for Dummies
- Insurance companies will use blockchain. One of my favorite examples of smart contracts is within insurance. This requires a bit of leniency on ‘decentralization’ since there has to be an authority to verify the legitimacy of a certain accident. Imagine car insurance. The smart contract will automate the whole claim process. If a legitimate source says the accident actually occurred, then the claim is triggered, and the customer is paid. This could possibly make accidents fun…Ok, maybe not. But it would make things much less painful.
- Governments will use blockchain. In developing countries, proving identity is a terrible problem. For example, to get a bank account, you need proof of residence or utility bills to establish identity, which might not exist in those countries. Digitally authenticated birth certificates that are time-stamped, immutable, and accessible by anyone will solve this problem. Imagine the reduction in human trafficking.
- Healthcare organizations will use blockchain. This is a tough one, since we are pretty far away from digitalization of medical history, but boy oh boy do we need it. Every doctor needs to know a patient’s full history to be able to assess each disease correctly, but this is just not possible today. Since people use multiple doctors, and these doctors don’t communicate with each other, information is lost, at the expense of the patient. Imagine medical history on the blockchain, with a complete history for each patient, for use by physicians for precise drug recommendations.
Photo by William Bout on Unsplash
The platform for blockchain applications
“Ok this is all great and everything, but how the hell do we actually build applications that solve all these problems you just mentioned?”
Guess what? I knew you would ask. And I’m here to deliver. Enter Hyperledger by the Linux Foundation. The project was formally named in late 2015, with 17 companies contributing to the effort. The goal is to:
“Advance blockchain technology for cross-industry use in business”
Man, I do hate corporate talk. But the good part is it is accurate and precise. And I like precision.
How to get blockchain to the next level
Simple. 5 things.
- It’s the fastest growing project in Linux Foundation History.
- Their vision is to provide robust and modular APIs to accommodate all use-cases imaginable.
- It has pluggable consensus. WHAT DID YOU SAY? YOU MEAN I DON’T HAVE TO USE PROOF OF WORK OR PROOF OF STAKE? Yup, you heard me right. You can plug your own consensus algorithm.
- No reliance on mining. This means faster transaction times, and smaller carbon footprint.
If that didn’t convince you then I’m out. Horea Blockchain out. Horea Call of Duty in.