How Blockchain Technology Is Changing Our World
Blockchain is more than just Bitcoins and cryptocurrency. It is true that people started noticing and acknowledging the importance of blockchains after the advent of Bitcoins. Ever since Bitcoin was launched, blockchain technology has been used in many other sectors as well. According to Don & Alex Tapscott, “The blockchain is an incorruptible digital ledger of economic transactions that can be programmed to record not just financial transactions but virtually everything of value.”
Also Read: What is Blockchain Technology?
How Blockchain Technology Is Changing Our World
Owning to its design and benefits, Blockchain technology is being used in several sectors already. Not only is it shaping the present but will also do so in the near and distant future. This argument is illustrated below.
Blockchains have distributed ledgers. Therefore coding can be done such that simple contracts that will execute when specified conditions are met. Ethereum is one such open source blockchain project that is s till, in its early stages. It has the potential to leverage the usefulness of blockchains on a truly world-changing scale, especially for copyrights and intellectual property rights.
The Sharing Economy
Many companies like Uber and AirBnB flourish on the sharing economy. These companies are nothing but intermediaries. Blockchain technology enables peer-to-peer payments and opens the door to direct interaction between parties. This is a truly decentralized sharing economy results.
Many crowdfunding initiatives are already working on the peer to peer model. Blockchains take this interest to the next level, potentially creating crowd-sourced venture capital funds.
By making the results fully transparent and publicly accessible, distributed database technology could bring full transparency to elections or any other kind of poll taking. Ethereum-based smart contracts help to automate the process.
Supply Chain Auditing
Distributed ledgers provide an easy way to certify if what the consumer is buying is genuine. This is because blockchains come with transparency because they are timestamped of a date and location.
Owning to decentralizing, file storage on the internet becomes easy and secure. Distributing data throughout the network protects files from getting hacked or lost. This is not only convenient but is also necessary as the web is currently overloaded with content-delivery systems.
Blockchains use “wisdom of the crowd” technology to make predictions on event probability is proven to have a high degree of accuracy. Averaging opinions of millions of users cancels out sample error that distort judgments.
Copyrights and Intellectual Property
Digital information can be infinitely reproduced and distributed over the internet. This has given web users globally a goldmine of free content. However, copyright holders are losing control over their intellectual property and suffering financially as a consequence. This field can utilize the capacity of blockchains to issue payments in fractional cryptocurrency amounts (micropayments). Smart contracts protect copyright and automate the sale of creative works online, eliminating the risk of online piracy.
Internet of Things (IoT)
What is the IoT? The network-controlled management of certain types of electronic devices — for instance, the monitoring of air temperature in a storage facility. Smart contracts make the automation of remote systems management possible. A combination of software, sensors, and the network facilitates an exchange of data between objects and mechanisms. The result increases system efficiency and improves cost monitoring. The biggest players in manufacturing, tech and telecommunications are all vying for IoT dominance. A natural extension of existing infrastructure controlled by incumbents, IoT applications will run the gamut from predictive maintenance of mechanical parts to data analytics, and mass-scale automated systems management.
Buying and selling of the renewable energy generated by neighborhood microgrids becomes easy via blockchain technology. When solar panels generate surplus energy, Ethereum-based smart contracts automatically redistribute it. Similar types of smart contract automation may have many other applications as the IoT becomes a reality.
Ever since the menace of fake news, there has been a definite need for better identity management over the internet. The ability to verify one’s identity is the linchpin of financial transactions that happen online. However, remedies for the security risks that come with web commerce are not yet perfect. Distributed ledgers of blockchain technology offer enhanced methods for proving identity, along with digitizing personal documents. Having a secure identity will also be important for online interactions like in the sharing economy. Developing digital identity standards is proving to be a highly complex process. The same technique can be usedin Anti-money laundering (AML) and know your customer (KYC) practices.
Today, in exchange for their personal data people can use social media platforms like Facebook for free. In future, users will have the ability to manage and sell the data their online activity generates. Because it can be easily distributed in small fractional amounts, Bitcoin — or something like it — will most likely be the currency that gets used for this type of transaction.
Land Title Registration
As Publicly-accessible ledgers, blockchains can make all kinds of record-keeping more efficient. Property titles are a case in point. They tend to be susceptible to fraud, as well as costly and labor intensive to administer. A number of countries are undertaking blockchain-based land registry projects. Honduras was the first government to announce such an initiative in 2015, although the current status of that project is unclear.
The potential for added efficiency in share settlement makes a strong use case for blockchains in stock trading. When executed peer-to-peer, trade confirmations become almost instantaneous as opposed to taking several days for clearance. This means blockchain technology will remove intermediaries from the process, thus increasing efficiency.
Blockchain Technology – The Future
The current innovation landscape of blockchain represents just 10 years of work by an elite group of computer scientists, cryptographers, and mathematicians. As the full potential of these breakthroughs will hit the society, it will surely bring about a sort of revolution.
Blockchain is reasonably expected to trigger cascades in a magnitude greater than e-commerce has done since it was invented, in the late 1990s. Predicting what direction of development and change is difficult. But the sense of scale inside the blockchain industry is that the changes coming will be “as large as the original invention of the internet”. One prediction is that as blockchain will matures and more people will catch on to this new mode of collaboration. This prediction is turning out to be true at the moment. The technology might also extend into everything from supply chains to provably fair internet dating. Thus eliminating the possibility of fake profiles and other menaces related to it.
Another thing is sure that what we were anticipating in the distant future could indeed arrive sooner.