The underlying powerhouse to all major cryptocurrencies is the blockchain technology. It is the one revolutionary idea that has come out of our current obsession with digital money. Experts believe that regardless of which way the digital currencies will go, blockchain is here to stay and re-shape the way we exchange information.
According to Google trends, blockchain has been in the top 10 list of most searched terms since January 2017. People from all over the world are excited about blockchain and want to learn more about the technology.
At its core, Blockchain is nothing more than an electronic ledger that shows a historical record of transactions stored as blocks of code. A new transaction received by the ledger must be authenticated by a decentralized network of nodes to check for errors or inconsistencies. Once the entry has been verified, it can be stored on the blockchain.
Characteristics of Blockchain
Blockchain is much more secure against the threat of hacking compared to any other database. This is because a traditional database is verified by the central server and once a hacker has breached the central server, they can easily gain access to all the data stored on the system.
With a decentralized ledger system, requests for entries are verified across a network. A hacker may be able to compromise one or two nodes on the network, but it would be near impossible to control the majority of nodes.
Under the current money transfer system, a person would need to contact their bank in order to transfer funds to another party. Blockchain removes the need for any third-party intermediary thus allowing faster transactions between two people.
Blockchain allows the option of building additional layers on the network using smart contracts. This technology was put to great use by the Ethereum developers who allowed their users to create smart contracts with pre-defined parameters.
Smart contracts have a great potential for use across the financial industry. Analysts believe they can significantly streamline the process of loan generation, securitization, and payments.
The blockchain can also be used to enhance supply chain management. The existing inventory management systems leave a long trail of paperwork, especially for large retailer with thousands of categories of products. Shifting the supply chain to DLS adds efficiency and reduces workload.
Possible Applications of Blockchain In The Near Future
The blockchain technology is already being applied by a number of businesses across a range of industries. For example, Unilever and Wal-Mart are already working with tech companies like IBM to implement blockchain to their supply chain management systems.
A number of tech startups in healthcare are working to create a record of medical patients that could be used by doctors and medical practitioners. This would allow doctors to quickly read a patient’s medical history from a card and apply the necessary medical treatment in case of an emergency.
Government officials are also looking to use the blockchain technology for voting. The fast, secure and transparent nature of blockchain entry system makes it ideal for use in elections.
Mortgage finance and lending businesses are also looking to use blockchain based smart contracts that would make the home financing process much easier, faster and transparent for lenders, borrowers and investors.
Charlie Shrem is a Bitcoin pioneer, a social economist and digital currency trader. His work in this field is legendary. In 2011, at the dawn of the crypto era, he founded BitInstant, the first and largest Bitcoin company. In 2013, he founded the Bitcoin Foundation and serve as its vice chairman. Since then, Charlie has advised more than a dozen digital currency companies, launched and managed numerous partnerships between crypto and non-crypto companies, and is the go-to guy for some of the world’s wealthiest entrepreneurs. In short, he is the ultimate insider at the epicenter of the crypto universe.
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