Blockchain came into the world of technologies as a descendant of several initial attempts towards the creation of cryptographically secured chain of blocks and has ever since acted as a distributed database maintaining a perpetually growing and expanding chain of blocks strung together in a homogenius linear pattern. Its conceptualisation and consequent implementation as a core technology for bitcoin was the brainchild of an anonymous person, or for that matter, a group, who gave a name to the world to know them by - Mr Satoshi Nakamoto. This became essentially the first tool invented that could distribute information without sharing them per se, making it incorruptible in character. This went on to become the backbone of the virtual world of internet with regard to bitcoin transactions and presently , Tech communities from all over the world are trying to come up with more pervasive uses of this technology, because of which “digital gold” once became possible.
For starters, Blockchain can be thought of as a public ledger of all bitcoin transactions executed in a secure manner without the need of any reliable administrator, thanks to its nature. It works primarily via a distributed timestamping server and a peer-to-peer network and is managed autonomously. Having said all these, in case we are wondering, these blocks are “current” parts of a blockchain that record all or parts of the transactions going on at present and once finished, go into the blockchain to be permanently incorporated in the main blockchain database, never to be edited retroactively again. Every time a block joins a chain, a new block is created and the process keeps on repeating giving rise to innumerable blocks getting added to the blockchain continuously. It keeps getting better as these blocks are only arranged and strung into the chain in a linear, chronological order with each block being connected with its previous one with a hash. The chain keeps growing rapidly and as of 2017, it has reached a whopping 100 gigabytes in size. This blockchain database is never stored in a single location, which means it has no centralized version for the hackers to get their hands on. Also, the use of blockchain reduces the characteristic of infinite reproducibility from a digital asset thus solving the problem of double spending.
At present, the tech world is trying to diversify the use of blockchain trying to push it beyond its limitations of just bitcoin and trying to implement it in many more fields where blockchain can infiltrate and revolutionise,all for the better. One of these fields is that of Financial Services. The infrastructure that is being used here at present is slow, expensive and often requires several intermediaries. The robust blockchain-based highly efficient platforms are therefore constantly threatening to disrupt these seemingly outdated models and take their place for more secure and integral functioning of financial services, which is of course highly favoured from the auditory and regulatory perspective. Secondly, blockchain has also shown promises in the field of securing digital identity which is at present is managed by problematic password-based systems shared and stored in insecure systems and constantly facing the threat of being compromised. Whereas blockchain- based authentication systems base their identity verification systems on digital signatures based on public key cryptography. Here, the only check performed is whether the correct digital key is being used or not. Blockchain technology can also streamline and restructure the music industry ensuring instantaneous and transparent transmission of artist royalties, realtime distribution to co-writers and fair payment for musicians’ work among many others. Along with this, blockchain technology can also play a huge role in property title management providing improved tracking and storing of records, improving efficiencies for title companies and all manners of data-retrieval services for that matter. Thus it is safe to say that keeping in mind such high benchmarks and targets the blockchain has set for itself, it won’t be much long before blockchain becomes synonymous with internet itself.