What is Blockchain and how is it changing the world?

The most daring specialists give the category of technological institution to the point of considering it the instrument that will shake the foundations of the way in which governments operate.

Blockchain, the technology behind Bitcoin

Day by day it is more common to hear terms such as cryptocurrencies, bitcoin, digital money and Blockchain, on issues related to innovative and disruptive technologies, which leads us to be increasingly aware of the rapid advance and transformation of the world in what concerns to science and technology.

More than three decades ago, the emergence of the Internet represented a huge technological leap that was not perceived at that time, not even by its first developers. Internet changed the way people move in many spheres of our lives, but especially in communication.

With the publication of the Bitcoin protocol in 2009, its developer Satoshi Nakamoto unveiled the technology behind the cryptocurrency, a decentralized network that allows transactions over the Internet to not require intermediaries that could interfere with its content, which today we know as Blockchain, which allows the transfer of digital data with a very sophisticated coding and that generates more confidence than intermediaries in security matters.

Decentralization of information and processes

It is precisely its characteristic of decentralization that gives importance to Blockchain, its functioning as a public record comparable to an accounting book, which reflects who owns what and who manages what, in which all the transactions settled there are protected with cryptography and the history is stored in data blocks that are grouped together and form a chain, adding a higher value due to the impossibility of falsifying the records.

For any sector that manages a centralized database Blockchain technology is quite attractive, since putting a block system will bring numerous benefits for both entities and their customers, especially in the security schemes, which have always represented their greater difficulty.

Although cryptocurrencies have generated a great impact and represent an important revolution within the concept of money management, it is this Blockchain technology that surprises the most. Blockchain is a tool that will transform the world of finances and the way in which humans have exchanged goods and values ​​until today. The most daring specialists give the category of technological institution to the point of considering it the instrument that will shake the foundations of the way in which governments, banks, institutions, contracts and companies like eBay, Uber and Amazon operate.

Technology for trust

With the development of smart contracts, which will allow agreements without revealing confidential information between the parties involved, we are faced with the novelty of being able to stipulate the rules and conditions of contracts in an encrypted software that no one can falsify. What is disruptive is that the execution of the contract, the fulfillment of the agreed upon object, times and remuneration can also be digitized because with this type of contract the software executes the contract, releases the money to pay for the contract, or not if it has not been fulfilled, without the need for a central authority to regulate this process, which would give rise to a world where corruption can not be justified.

Another sector that could live a revolution thanks to Blockchain is electronic voting, until now a non-viable option in democracies due to hacking. With this system, the problems that prevented the real use of electronic voting disappear after the elimination of intermediaries, which is definitely a valuable resource for the electoral processes, and even so that the elected governors can fulfill their electoral promises and can be required to it.

There are already several governments that have started to create applications based on Blockchain to improve the transparency of their management, as in the case of Estonia and Brazil. Blockchain also represents a guarantee to avoid “human errors”, bribes, clientelism and breaches. If social contracts such as the bases of public tenders for hiring are reinforced in a blockchain, with assignments that are executed through smart contracts these actions are printed with a guarantee of transparency, which takes into account the best applicability characteristics of the contestants.

The banking and financial sector leads this migration movement towards Blockchain, followed by insurers, telecommunication companies and energy companies. These are just some sectors of the market that can benefit from a correct application of this technology and, therefore, investigate the properties and characteristics of this new technology before the well-founded fear that it could threaten its current business model.

Internet Evolution

Blockchain leads the Internet revolution, taking it to move from what we know as the Internet of Information to the Internet of Value, since the biggest advantage brought by the Internet at the time was related to communication and the handling of information. However, the implications that Blockchain brings to the Internet, although theoretically, focus precisely on the security of the information that is handled in the network, they have more repercussions on what that security represents when assigning value to the economic or contractual transactions that are made through it.

Cybersecurity, digital identity, health, apps for banking, supply chains, energy providers, public safety and transportation, online purchases, donations, education, copyright, ownership of property and land… Blockchain’s application possibilities are innumerable, practically endless and affect all areas of business that we can think of, and some new ones that are about to appear, which makes us be possibly facing a change as momentous as the Internet was.

When we look back and review those technologies that promised a similar revolution then we can be surprised when we see among them Big Data, social networks, solid hard drives, Cloud Computing, e-books and 3D printers. With total security, in a few years we will be surprised to have doubted that the Blockchain paradigm had a future.

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