Blockchain

How blockchain technology is going to affect every industry, and disrupt everything from money to the Internet, and the reasons why we should use it.
Summary of documents, speeches, courses, interviews, books and articles from some of the leading blockchain experts.



What is blockchain?

The technology likely to have the greatest impact on the next few decades is not social media, big data, robotics, or even AI.
It's blockchain.
Now we have the Internet of Information, and blockchain is going to be the next generation of the Internet, Internet 2.0, Internet of Value.
In 2008 Satoshi Nakamoto invented Bitcoin and the blockchain.
For the first time in history, his invention made it possible to establish trust and send money around the globe without banks, governments, credit card companies, or any other intermediaries and solved an unsolvable problem.
But the blockchain is much more than just Bitcoin and other digital currencies.
For the first time in human history, people everywhere can now trust each other when transacting peer to peer.
Its power is in allowing a network to operate reliably without the need for a central point of control.

Blockchain, a new form of decentralized database, is changing the foundation of our economic and social systems.
What the Internet did for communications, blockchain will do for trusted transactions.
It’s a real-time ledger of anything that can be recorded.
You have the ability to create records that are indelible, you have the ability to transfer value by making updates to those records, and you have the ability to automate updates to the records through smart contracts.
No one person or organization is in charge of the entire chain.
It’s open and everyone in the chain can see the detail of each record.
Each block is time stamped and encrypted; the only person who can edit a block is the one that “owns” it.
Owners gain access to their block through a private key that only they have.
When there are changes to an individual block, everyone’s distributed blockchain is updated and syncs in real time.
Every transaction goes into a block, and each block connects to the one before and after it which amps up its security.
While nothing is fully hackproof, blockchain is significantly more secure than anything else we have today.
Blockchain technology promises to revolutionize business and finance.
Because blockchain technology establishes a peer-to-peer network within one system, it cuts out the time and costs of intermediaries.

Blockchain gives us new ways of solving problems because it creates trust in the data.
Blockchain has two main technical ingredients, cryptography, and distributed systems.
Because blockchain is a type of technology, and not a single network, it can be implemented in many different ways.
Some blockchains can be completely public and open to everyone to view and access.
Others can be closed to a selected group of authorized users such as your company, a group of banks or government agencies.
And there are hybrid public-private blockchains too.

Blockchains are decentralized networks, unlike Alibaba, Airbnb, and Uber which are centralized networks.
The most revolutionary thing about blockchain is that it replaces trust in big institutions with public trust in a technology that enables radical transparency.
And blockchain will decentralize power from big institutions to individuals and smaller groups.
It’s a profound shift in how the Internet could be used to creating new forms of value, new ways of transacting value and include all people in global finance.

Blockchain technology will lift a lot of people out of poverty and allows more people to engage in global commerce.
Cost efficiency is embracing the blockchain technology and widening the accessible markets.
When smartphones can be purchased with a price so little that everyone in the world can have access to a smartphone and can be connected to Internet, which is going to happen soon, it’s going to be a game changer, and then we are going to get an answer to the question of what happens when everybody has money.
Blockchain is a technology that can help all the human race.
And when that happens, make sure that your organization or company, the place where you are working, is also using blockchain technology anywhere it can be used.

Smart contracts are going to automate a lot of the things that institutions and people handle today.
Smart contracts are contracts that self-executes and the contract handles the enforcement, the management, performance, and payment, sort of like a contract with a lawyer and a bank and a government, but all in software inside the contract.
The IoT, Internet of Things, is going to be the best test case for many blockchain technologies, and it’s going to affect every industry, just like the Internet affected every industry.
We are about to put 50 billion IoT connected devices on the Internet by 2020, and that will change business and life as we know it.
Blockchain is making it more secure with its military-grade cryptology.
Blockchains are never being hacked, only points of entry like wallets and exchanges.
In terms of its development, blockchain is where the Internet was 20 years ago.
Only 0.5% of the world’s population is using blockchain today, but 50% or 3.77 billion people use the Internet.

There is a significant investment by today’s tech giants such as IBM and Microsoft in blockchain technology.
IBM dedicates $200 million and 1,000 employees to blockchain-powered projects.
Investors prefer to invest in companies that are using blockchain, the average investment in blockchain projects is $1 million.
Over the last five years, VCs, venture capitalists, have invested more than $1 billion into blockchain companies.
The global blockchain market is expected to be worth $20 billion by 2024.
90% of major North American and European banks are already exploring blockchain solutions.
Blockchains are highly transparent because anyone with access to a blockchain can view the entire chain.
Similar to a Google doc, all participants within a network see all changes to the ledger.
The ledger is constantly updated and each participant has their own copy of it.
Just like with the Internet, there will be jobs that become obsolete.
But, there will be new careers that we haven’t even dreamed of yet that will be created as a result of the blockchain transformation.
There are already many new technologies inspired by blockchain.

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Blockchain use cases






In the long-term, blockchain has the potential to disrupt the way every business is done.
Your entire medical history could be centrally recorded and maintained in a blockchain ledger which would allow secure and traceable access by authorized hospitals and health care providers.
Currently, the infrastructural systems present in healthcare struggles to track and record verifications, movement of assets, ownership, and identity.
Streamlining these processes via blockchain technology could potentially save registries billions of dollars of taxpayer funds.
Blockchain serves as a viable solution to radically transform the current pitfalls of our healthcare systems, by making services radically more efficient, fairer and cheaper.

The United Kingdom Department for International Development and Denmark’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs released reports on the opportunities for blockchain in international development.
The United States Agency for International Development released a primer on how distributed ledger technologies including blockchain can help foreign aid agencies and their partners.
Ensuring the effective transfer and utilization of billions of dollars of foreign aid is a major challenge, up to 10 percent of funds can be lost in transaction fees and fluctuating exchange rates, on top of the potential loss through intermediaries and corruption.
WFP, World Food Programme, built and implemented its own blockchain system in Jordan’s Azraq refugee camp to directly pay vendors, make cash transfers easier and inspect beneficiary spending.
Around 100 firms and organizations have joined a new blockchain association to promote adoption of the technology across the EU.
The International Association of Trusted Blockchain Applications, INATBA, is aiming to bring together developers and users of blockchain technology to promote mainstream adoption across multiple sectors.

Charities and nonprofits are increasingly accepting cryptocurrency as donations, despite outcry from high-profile development figures.
And Bitcoin-related donations have taken even more novel forms.
UNICEF Australia launched The Hopepage, which allows just about anyone with a computer to easily donate some of their computer processing power to generate cryptocurrency.
Developing countries are where blockchain and regulations have the biggest potential to take off, because in developing countries, especially the small ones, there’s enough room to innovate, whereas it’s very hard to change laws in developed countries.

Next generation crypto asset are connecting China to the World.
The biggest supply chain ever, One Belt One Road project linking Hong Kong and Rotterdam, is using blockchain for trade finance and all kinds of other applications.
So buyers, sellers, various shippers, escrow agents, authorities, and tax people, all have a shared network stat where they can look real time at everything that’s happening.
Chinese figures for planned investment range from $1 trillion to $8 trillion, and the “Project of the Century” includes 78 countries.
The Hong Kong-based blockchain startup, Matrix AI Network, signed an exclusive partnership with the Chinese government-affiliated Belt and Road Development Research Center making it the institution’s first blockchain and artificial intelligence technology supporter.
The supply chain industry is rife with convoluted systems and processes.
Tracking transactions is an overly complex situation due to how many intermediaries are all participating in the chain.
Blockchain is an ideal solution in tackling supply chain issues as it can monitor real-time tracking, enforce transparency and help make processes more efficient via automated verification systems.
Global Logistics Market is expected to reach $15.5 trillion by 2023, and all of that is going to move onto blockchain.
Logistics market includes all the activities of the supply chain such as transportation, customer service, inventory management, flow of information, order processing, warehousing, material handling, purchasing, packaging, information, and maintenance.

The technology and the transparency model of blockchain can take much of the complexity out of backend processes in banking, and supply chains, but also in the delivery of electronic goods.
That will enable lots of new, often smaller competitors to undermine the profit margins of big incumbents and provide goods and services for less in order to disrupt the market.
Blockchain has the potential to rewrite the economy and change the balance of power across industries.
70% of professionals don't have experience using blockchain yet, but many see its potential, said it will affect their industry at some point.
Blockchain is first causing changes in the IT/technology and finance/banking/insurance sectors.
Since technology professionals are going to be the ones enabling the use of blockchain, and finance, banking, and insurance industries are working with cryptocurrencies and smart contracts.
Blockchain technology is currently disrupting, or it will disrupt any industry that involves data and transactions.

There are other forms of blockchain-ready assets than currency, that are public in nature, and are already used in digital platforms.
Entertainment assets such as gaming items, video content, and digital collectibles are some examples of virtual items that can be implemented with minimal friction—enabling current users to benefit from the blockchain’s security, transparency, and decentralized impartiality.
Six game developers came together to create blockchain gaming items that can be used across multiple games—they called their network of games a “multiverse".
A multiverse consists of items, assets, and characters that can be used in all games that support them, which means the inventory appears to travel from game to game.
In an industry where millions of developers compete for player attention, this gaming coalition could very well rise to the top.
And if (and when) it does, blockchain technology will rise with it and become crucial to the games market.
Even now, some of these developers are monetizing their yet-to-be-launched games at incredible rates because they are selling items that can be used in multiple games.
Monetizing at 3.5x the average rate of the entire games market—while still in development.
The average gamer spends $70 per year on gaming while the average player on games that are using blockchain technology spends $250 per year.
Blockchain is an effective crowdfunding tool because players can buy and receive items before a game is even released.
When you own a blockchain asset, it’s not just content that a server grants you access to, your ownership is irrefutable and permanent—you can hold assets forever, trade them freely, use them in multiple platforms, and even sell them for a profit.
Blockchain assets can also be used in multiple devices simultaneously.
According to gamers, owning gaming items and being able to use them in multiple games is epic.

Applications of blockchain have already been found in these industries: Banking, cybersecurity, energy, healthcare, insurance, music/media, research, retail, real estate, supply chain, management, and voting.
The world is moving towards decentralizing and removing the middle person to save both resources and time.
At the core of this movement is blockchain technology.

Blockchain in banks and finance




As of today, payments and money transfers are the largest use of blockchain.
Financial inclusion is the most mature applications of blockchain.
Blockchain is processing transactions faster, cheaper and more securely than traditional methods.
Financial systems today exclude billions of people from the global economy, for example, people who don’t have enough money to have a bank account.
And they slow things down, are decentralized, and take 10-20% fees.
If you use a credit card to buy something, a bitstream goes through many companies, each with their own computer system, and three days later, a settlement occurs.
With a blockchain financial industry, there would be no settlement, because the payment and the settlement is the same activity, it’s just a change in the ledger.
Banks and financing firms can access to new, undiscovered markets.
9 out of 10 business people agree that blockchain will disrupt the banking and financial industry.
One-third of C-level executives are considering adopting or are already using blockchain technology.
It is estimated that banks could save $8-12 billion annually if they used blockchain technology.

The opportunities in this area are enormous.
1.7 billion adults still remain unbanked.
Fortunately, many of the challenges in this space, such as a lack of digital identity and property registration, happen to also be some of the greatest strengths of blockchain.
Two-thirds of those 1.7 billion unbanked adults own a mobile phone that could help them access financial services.
A lot of governments globally are looking at land titles as a first step to start in blockchain because land titles in certain countries can be tampered with.
Also, for poor people in the developing world who own land or property, such assets are among the easiest to leverage for credit in order to help pull themselves out of poverty.
Because trust is native to blockchain technology, blockchain builds trust when, and where, you need it the most.

Some blockchain projects in banking and finance have been working for almost three years already in production, giving the companies, for example, all the activities of the purchases in the credit card, all the calls to the call center, everything, of course encrypted, and they use blockchain and artificial intelligence based systems to predict who's going to take a loan, and who needs a loan.
When companies know that these 10,000 customers today are the ones who most need a loan, they make phone calls.
Because they make phone calls to the right people, they sell three times more loans, and all this research is automatically done.
By using these blockchain and A.I. based systems, companies can get predictions more accurate than the entire team in their organization can give after three months.
All the banks have to get ready, because we are entering a new era of technology, and leaders of the industry today, and many of the banks and financial companies, have a choice to make about using blockchain.
They can either do it themselves or have it done to them.

Blockchain 3.0






Blockchain, a distributed ledger technology, as a concept continues to evolve at a rapid rate, with new iterations of the technology coming out faster than many can keep up with.
Blockchain 3.0 is a new technology aimed at bringing cryptocurrency into the mainstream.
Blockchain 3.0 focuses on solving the issues of energy consumption, scalability, interoperability, and user experience.
For cryptocurrency to gain mainstream adoption, existing cryptocurrencies must be able to work together.
Mainstream acceptance relies on the ability of users to enjoy the benefits of their favorite cryptocurrencies while interacting with other existing protocols.
Think of blockchain 3.0 as producing plugins and extensions to your favorite tech.
Blockchain 3.0 is bringing interoperability the crypto world.
Atomic swaps, decentralized trading, allow for different cryptocurrencies to be traded with each other without needing a 3rd party verification from an exchange.
Blockchain 3.0 offers many 3rd party apps built on top of successful protocols like Bitcoin and Ethereum.
Hybrid protocols are developed that enjoy both the speed of PoS (proof of stake) and the security of PoW (proof of work), enabling faster, cheaper, and more secure transactions.

Designing simpler private keys or implementing biometrics is also coming with blockchain 3.0.
Allowing for smart contracts with almost unlimited transaction speeds is another great example.
One exciting development is the goal to implement WebAssembly, ditching their proprietary virtual machine.
In laymen’s terms, dAPP development will be opened to almost all developers, speeding up mass adoption.
While emerging blockchain technologies have revolutionized usability among an elite developer community, it has fallen short in making the development of cryptocurrency, blockchain technology, and decentralized applications easy and accessible to entrepreneurs and innovators.
Developers, entrepreneurs, and businesses no longer need to create their own smart contracts and APIs to integrate blockchain into their platforms.
By adopting easy-to-use tools, products could go to market within months.
Right now, the killer app for blockchain is locked within the mind of a person who can’t build smart contracts—soon they won’t have to.

Protocols flying the ‘Blockchain 3.0’ flag are pushing for increased security and usability, more robust programming ecosystems, and improved governance frameworks.
They are helping entrepreneurs, small to medium businesses, enterprises and government leverage a multidimensional blockchain platform to build innovative dApps and smart business solutions.
Blockchain 3.0 solutions address scalability at a technical level by describing an innovative next-gen blockchain protocol that scales with adoption.
Blockchain 3.0 solutions are improving the existing ecosystem, creating potential technology that will disrupt everything from money to the Internet.

In terms of Blockchain’s successes, value transfer has been proven, and Distributed Ledger Technology continues to gain momentum as a viable solution to many of the problems inherent within centralized models.
Blockchain 3.0 platforms set out to meet the demands of large enterprises by offering a solution that is truly scalable for business.
It’s the combination of de-centralizing of the data, building trust in the data, and allowing us to interact directly with one another and the data, that gives blockchain technology the potential to underpin many of the ways we interact with one another.
Companies should ask themselves what is blockchain technology enabling us to do, that we were not able to do in the past.

Projects underway on the blockchain 3.0:
A currency that pays its own taxes.
A currency that automatically gives discounts to certain citizens at the moment of purchase, for example, veterans or seniors.
Social network without a company in the center keeping all the profit that’s generated from our content and comments.
News network without a media company in the center.
Digital cloud without servers in the center but only all of our computers strung together.
Decentralized, 10 to 100 times bigger search engine than all of Google worldwide.

Blockchain can solve some of the world's most difficult problems, for example: Protecting rights through immutable record, creating a true sharing economy, ending the remittance rip-off, enabling citizens to own and monetize their data and protect privacy, and ensuring compensation for the creators of value.
Business leaders should be getting excited about the fact that the Internet is entering a second era, and they need to transform their businesses around that.
Now is not time to stand back and be an observer, it’s time for countries and companies to lean in and shape this technology and be part of shaping the future.
Today we have six billion people with a smartphone in their pocket.
A lot of them in the developing world don’t have a bank account, but they can instantly be brought into the financial system, because they are blockchain ready right now.

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