What is the Blockchain? Why does it matter? This is hard to explain, as is any new technology that is different than anything else ever before it. It took me several articles and YouTube videos to finally grasp it. Rather than repeating those articles in a less eloquent style, I’ll use an example to explain it.
My friends and I often played volleyball throughout high school and college. And of course we were all pretty competitive, so we’d keep score. After running around and getting sweaty while diving all over the place, it was easy to forget the score. But there was always one guy who would keep the score in his head. We would just trust that he was accurate. We quickly found out that if we just left the scorekeeping to 1 person, they were more likely to make an error, or just straight up lie. So, our solution was this: we had multiple people keeping track of the score, and then before each serve we would announce the score to make sure we were all on the same track. This would allow everyone to mentally update the score in their heads, and to prevent 1 person from cheating, or making an honest mistake. Simple, right? Blockchain technology works the same way. This system of multiple people keeping track of the information is referred to as a distributed ledger. It is decentralized, so that there is no single point of vulnerability. The whole network is “keeping score” so that their aren’t any mistakes.
Think of it like a Google Doc. Multiple people can access the same Google Doc, at the same time, from different locations. Taking it a step further. Say the Google Doc was set so that anyone can add to the doc, but not remove anything else that others added. This is how the blockchain operates to prevent other from deleting transactions on the ledger. Every transaction has a timestamp and is recorded with information that cannot be deleted our altered in any way.
Here is a video that does a great job explaining the blockchain:
And another great presentation on Bitcoin:
There are many blockchains that have been developed, with Bitcoin being the first, and most well known. However, Ethereum is another blockchain that I believe has even more potential than Bitcoin. The technology and development team behind this company is outstanding. Ethereum is leveraging the power of “Smart Contracts” in its development. We will no longer need centralized 3rd party intermediaries to handle transactions. “Smart Contracts” will execute themselves and people with be able to transact person to person. Brokers, as they are known today, will be unemployed.
This is an overly simple explanation of the blockchain. But the power of this technology will revolutionize multiple industries. Disruptive innovations only come along every so often. Think about how the Wright brothers and Henry Ford transformed the transportation industries. Or how the personal computer and Internet changed the way nearly everything operates in today’s world. Well, Blockchain technology will do the same for multiple industries. This blog is mainly for me to document my thoughts and ideas, but if anyone is reading this — Get involved now, thank me later.