If you haven’t heard of Blockchain technology, it would be worth taking the time to read this article and understand its potential applications, as it is set to fundamentally change the way we do business and transact around the world.
Today, businesses revolve around a centralised infrastructure. Product and customer data are stored on large servers which are vulnerable to hacking and tampering. As a business, this comes with a significant investment in storage and major overheads in data validation, fraud and data protection. As consumers, we trust that the companies are putting suitable precautions in place to protect our data but as we have seen on multiple occasions these precautions aren’t always enough. Blockchain aims to change this by decentralising businesses, moving the trust we place in organizations to the digital domain and providing us with instant access to our personal information that is stored securely and autonomously with every transaction.
What is Blockchain Technology and Why is it So Good?
A blockchain is a public ledger shared across a network of nodes (i.e. computers). The ledger has a record of every transaction that has ever occurred on the blockchain. Whenever a new transaction is made, it’s added to a pool of other new transactions which is gathered up, converted into a block, and added to the chain. Additions to the blockchain are impossible to fake but easy to verify. Take a look at the videos below for graphical explanations of how a blockchain works.
What does Decentralised Mean?
The definition of decentralised is the “transfer (authority) from central to local government”. In the context of blockchain technology, decentralised refers to the transition from storing information in a single location to distributing that information across a network of computers. Before blockchain technology, there was no proven method of doing this securely.
Why is Decentralisation a Good Thing?
The decentralisation of information aims to move the trust we place in centralised organisations, such as banks, to a consensus-driven trust. Imagine if there were 100 people in a room who can’t move, and you wanted to give one of them on the other side of the room £20. To give that person £20 you have to pass it to multiple people in the room in order for it to get to the person you intended. It is in the interest of everyone in the room that your £20 makes it to that person as they get paid to handle (process) the transaction. This means multiple people see that the transaction is for £20, so if one person tries to change it to £10 everyone else will disagree and out rule that change. So instead of trusting an organisation, we are trusting the consensus of the majority in the network.
What can Blockchain Do for the Electronics Industry?
Blockchain has the ability to run coded rules, which have been given the name of Smart Contracts. Smart contracts allow businesses to perform complex transactions across the blockchain in addition to the standard peer-to-peer financial transactions that bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies do today. A good example would be the electronics industry. When a component is purchased today the maximum amount of information available to the consumer is the manufacturer, price and technical specifications. Blockchain technology has the ability to record every step of the product’s lifecycle, where it came from, the materials it uses, the results of the batch testing…everything would be captured and available to the consumer.
Now, certain manufacturers may not want you to know this information, and that is their decision, however, if a manufacturer does not want to make this information public, it is a red flag to consumers that they are hiding something. Therefore, it is in the interest of the manufacturer to use blockchain technology as it will not only show that they are reliable and transparent, but it will also open up a whole new customer base using micro-transactions in poorer countries. I explain the concept of microtransactions and their benefits below.
How Can Blockchain Technology Bring Prosperity to All?
Blockchain technology has the potential to create a wealth of prosperity around the world. It will allow small businesses to compete with corporations as the cost of transacting with customers is dramatically reduced. It can handle micro-transactions meaning consumers can buy small quantities of components with next to no fees. Business owners in poorer countries can sell in the digital domain without having to own a bank account, and the money gets to them in seconds rather than days.
All these things will have a huge impact on every country in the world. It will impact you, me, corporations and governments, and I personally look forward to seeing the day the world opens its eyes to the possibilities it provides.
I hope by reading this you recognise the potential of blockchain technology and how it can change the world for the better. I wish you all the best in life and if you wish to learn more please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org where I and my network of blockchain consultants will be happy to provide you with any information you require. The goal is to educate the world and bring the opportunity of prosperity to everyone in it.
About Thomas Hind-Valentine
Thomas Hind-Valentine is an Electrical Systems Engineer by trade with experience in military and automation systems. However, Thomas has the life ambition to Develop and Invest in Technology to Help People. It is this ambition that has driven him to develop and invest in blockchain technology as he truly believes that blockchain will change the future of humanity for the better.
Master of Engineering in Electrical and Electronics Engineering
Sept 2014 – May 2017: Electrical Systems Engineer for the Nuclear Submarine Industry
May 2017 – October 2017: Contracting HMI Systems Engineer for the Automotive Industry
October 2017 – Present: Platform Electrical Engineer for the Maritime Industry
Blockchain Technology Entrepreneur and Investor
Director of PinPointPark Ltd