Blockchain as a financial technology (FitTech) surged in late 2015. Wall Street banks and other international financial firms stress tested this technology and are investing in blockchain infrastructure. Even Janet Yellen and The Federal Reserve received a blockchain briefing within June.
Don Tapscott’s Blockchain Revolution: How the Technology Behind Bitcoin Is Changing Money, Business, and the World is a worthy introduction to this advanced security ledger technology. This book is NOT about Bitcoin.
Tapscott paints with a wide brush across the underlying architecture. Looking for blockchain infrastructure, cryptocurrency or blockchain as a service than take a glance at the table of contents. O’Reilly’s Blockchain books are more targeted to tech folks anyway.
Hard to believe I have been a fan of Don’s writing for over 10 years. Just looked at my review of Wikinomics and MacroWikinomics, his previous books published way back in 2006. His follow up Macrowikinomics was released in 2008. It was interesting to me to understand Don lightly wrapped an element from Wikinomics called Ideagoras into The Blockchain Revolution. Sometimes you just cannot leave home….
Clearly FinTech sees the blockchain’s potential to disrupt their world. The focus for Tapscott is how to address Blockchain beyond Wall Street. The blockchain allows participants of public and private distributed systems to agree on a common view of a system and track changes across those systems with highly secure encryption. Security is also the core of healthcare blockchains with the focus on the crypto in cryptocurrency.
And in the fast changing world we live in some are pointing to Blockchain 1.0 that has a Bitcoin focus and 2.0 is wider to address smart contracts. Smart contracts are addressed by Tapscott. And a lot of attention by Tapscott is on Vitalik Buterin. His Ethereum is a decentralized blockchain platform for applications.
And yet for all the praise heaped upon Buterin in the book written over the last two years, the June 2016 hack of Ethereum reveals a potential weakness in their Virtual Machine. It contradicts the promise of Ethereum apps running without any chance of fraud, censorship or third-party interference. Consider Ethereum work in progress.
When Microsoft recently launched their Azure Blockchain or Blockchain As A Service (BaaS) their announcement brings more credibility to continue Blockchain’s momentum. Microsoft named their Blockchain cloud Project Bletchley.