The most popular opinion about Blockchain today is that it the technology that powers Bitcoin. While that is true, bitcoin is not the only application of Blockchain technology. Blockchain is capable of so much more. The term Blockchain does not just signify a single chain of block. Rather Blockchain is shorthand for a whole suite of distributed ledger technologies that can be programmed to record and track anything of value, from financial transactions to medical records or even land titles. You might think that we already have processes in place to track data, so what’s so special about blockchain. I’ll try and breakdown the reasons why Blockchain technology stands to revolutionize the way we interact with each other.
The first reason is the way it tracks and stores data. Blockchain stores information in batches, called blocks, that are linked together in chronological fashion to form a continuous line, metaphorically a chain of blocks. If you make a change to the information recorded in a particular block, you don’t rewrite it, instead the change is recorded in the next block. Showing that ‘x’ changed to ‘y‘ at a particular date and time.
Unlike the age old ledger method (originally a book then a database file stored on a single system), blockchain was designed to be decentralised and distributed among a network of computers. This decentralising and distribution makes the data more secure and impenetrable against data tampering or even a hack. Every new block that has to be added in the blockchain has to pass through verification and validation performed by the same network. Verification by a large number of computers means that we can trust every block in the network, the network does the trust building for us.