Blockchain technology. Will you embrace or block it?

Have you wondered how certain technologies disrupted across several markets in a way that we could have not imagined or guessed? Here is another one that is slowly taking its shape – Blockchain.

Blockchain technology is an incorruptible digital ledger in which digital transactions of cryptocurrencies are recorded chronologically and publicly. Think of it as a replacement to your general ledger (tracking all activities or events) but digitally recorded with high security and encryption that allows all participants in your supply chain to log transactions in a collaborative manner. I am sure lot of us worry about our personal information (such as phone number, SSN, credit card number) getting misused when we enter them in a website, commerce portal or tax forms. Blockchain technology adds immense trust in an untrusted distributive environment and offers digital record keeping (irrevocable or unchangeable) for your digital assets.

Although the current experimentation and proof of concepts are targeting towards revolutionizing financial institutions, there are lot of use cases in supply chain, real-estate contract/title management, healthcare digitization, software asset management, stock market transactions and any payment processing. Bitcoin is the first implementation of this technology and is very popular one. Bitcoin is a digital currency in which encryption techniques (power of Blockchain) are used to regulate the generation of units of currency and verify the transfer of funds, operating independently of a central bank (avoiding any intermediaries and thereby no additional costs or processing times).

Following diagram clearly depicts how Blockchain works? Credits to Financial Times.

HowBlockChainWorks

I would advise caution a bit as it is premature and there is limited governance and regulation. As we see lot of technological disruptions and innovations in business models, I believe Blockchain will help enable modern businesses. Currently, there are several technology giants such as IBM, Microsoft who are investing and experimenting in this space. There are several hundreds of startups working on creating new products and marketplace. It is definitely worth to acquaint awareness about this technology.

If you are interested in further reading, here are some great resources. HBR, Financial Times, IBM Blockchain, The Economist, PC Magazine, Blockgeeks, and many more (via Bing, Google).

Happy learning. Please comment, share your feedback, and share with your friends using social media buttons below.

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