Blockchain in Simple Terms
Blockchain is a software platform for digital assets. It was invented by the same person or persons as Bitcoins, “Satoshi Nakamoto”. Blockchain technology is forming a new type of internet (digital information can be distributed but not copied). Just imagine a spreadsheet which is copied across thousands of networked computers, then visualise that this computer network is designed to update the spreadsheet. That is blockchain!
Each block is a record of new transactions and once it is completed it’s added to the chain. Hence a chain of blocks, or blockchain.
What are the Benefits of Blockchain?
At North London IT Support, we are always suggesting ways to keep clients’ data safe against hackers. Blockchain could be the future of IT as information is held on a database which is continually being updated. The blockchain database isn’t held in one single place, so a hacker can’t corrupt a master file. Records are public and data is accessible to anyone on the internet.
Other benefits include:
- Like the internet, it cannot be controlled by one person or entity
- It has no single point of failure (like the internet, you cannot delete it in its entirety)
- It can reduce the risk of fraud
Think Google Docs
If you are a fan of Google Docs then you will probably be a fan of blockchain. As described by William Mougayar, Google Docs allows two or more parties to edit a document simultaneously and the single version is always visible. No-one is locked out of a document whilst someone is editing it, the “spreadsheet” or block is updated and a single version available.
This means that for banking, transactions are verified at both ends at the same time (money can’t get lost in transit). This technology could also be extended the legal sector or any business which relies on sharing and collaborating on documents.
If you are baffled by how blockchain works then take a look at this video on Youtube for a visual explanation. We also like this article which shows how blockchain technology can be integrated into the daily lives of small businesses.