Introduction to Blockchain Technology

In this chapter, we give an overview of blockchain, along with its key concepts such as cryptography and hash algorithms, the distributed ledger, transactions, blocks, proof of work, mining, and consensus. We cover Bitcoin, the mother of blockchain technology, in detail. We briefly introduce Ethereum by pointing out some limitations of Bitcoin and how they are addressed by Ethereum. While Bitcoin and Ethereum are examples of public blockchains, IBM's Hyperledger is used as an example of enterprise blockchains. At the end of this chapter, we mention the evolution of the blockchain: blockchain 1.0, 2.0, 3.0, and beyond, based on their use cases. Specifically, we will cover the following topics on blockchain: ...

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