Blockchain Is Paving The Way For New Culture, Trust!
Blockchain has varying connotations for people with different educational backgrounds and interests. For Developers, Blockchain is a set of protocols and encryption technologies for storing data on a distributed network; Business Professionals, it is a distributed ledger, and cryptocurrencies…another financial instrument; Technologists, it is the next driving force behind the Internet 3.0; Governments and Politicians, it is simply a tool to shape the socio-economic fabric, taking us into a more decentralized, more trusted world. Whichever way you perceive it, whatever hat you don, Blockchain is here to stay and is going to have a truly profound effect on futuristic advancements!
Trust is a basic human instinct. Our daily lives, from running basic errands to addressing complicated issues all are dependent on trust. Imagine a world sans trust, the element of sanity would fade into oblivion rendering survival in a trustless environ not only difficult but dangerous!
We all trust machines in the performance of our chores, from pressing the brakes in vehicles to cruising at an altitude of 40,000 feet AGL, to clicking a button on a virtual Webpage and transacting your savings! Remove the trust feature, even for a split second, now visualize your new world…you won’t even move out from your couch!
The 21st Century mantra is Globalization! This interdependence, interconnectedness, and interrelatedness require mass communication tools to be viewed in the right perspective. While technologies like Wha App, Facebook, Twitter etcetera address the communication barriers; Blockchain, on the other hand, revolves around the notion of ‘TRUST’ resolving trust deficit concerns of mankind. For the first time in human history, people can trust each other and transact without any centralized management. Where does this trust come from? How is trust established?
Trust, in Blockchain, is established by a set of protocols, cryptography and a computer code. This is the same computer code that makes avionics in a glass cockpit function, moves LRT driverless trains, stops cars when you hit the brakes…the same electronic code that helps transact all your life savings at the click of a button, whether you are doing it from the comfort of your home or the bank officials are transacting it for you. Someone, somewhere, is pressing a key that is executing the same computer code! So, where are the disharmony and the disequilibrium?
Think of reference checks in the hiring process, recommendation letters when applying for placements at the University, guarantors needed when applying for even the smallest bank loan. Someone, in some remote corner of the world, vouches for your credentials as bonafide…and lo it becomes an integral part of the processes of hiring, admissions, credit approvals…ad infinitum. A word uttered by the human tongue, a small piece of flesh, controlled by the programming code of the mind means so much…imaging what the tongue of the computer world would mean? When something is written on Blockchain, it is considered to be the ultimate truth! Nothing, not even the developer of the Code can modify it. It is truth personified!
The architectural framework of Blockchain makes it tamper proof. The Code in the Blockchain executes automatically once it is scheduled to run as per events programmed in chronological order. We all understand smart people, smart cities…and, of course, smartphones! The new generation of Block Chain rotates on the fulcrum of smart contracts!
Law firms have been prompt in ascertaining and understanding the impact of Blockchain in their domain. In the future, people will be creating smart contracts linked to bank accounts, to be executed immediately upon certain occurrences. These smart contracts are the same contracts that were once written by lawyers, on stamped pieces of paper, and stored in a safe place, to be executed on a stipulated date and time by humans…lawyers, in courts, in litigation and harmony, with charges accruing to the services provided. The same contract is now delegated to computing machines, which will execute it immediately upon the same occurrences–and regulated by law.
There are two valid schools of thought that revolve around Blockchain technology. One is Ripple and the other, Ethereum. They are both tangentially opposite! Ripple focuses on the deployment of existing banking and centralized culture bridging speed and operational gaps. Ethereum, on the other hand, is a disruptor for centralized cultures. Which school of thought you subscribe to and follow is ultimately left to your discretion and perception! Both revolve around the notion of Blockchain!
Blockchain is a Culture of Trust!
This article has been contributed by Fahd Saifuddin who is a Technology leader, Project Manager, Consultant and Architect.