“I cannot understand why people are frightened of new ideas. I’m frightened of the old ones.”
REACHING CONSENSUS is at the heart of a blockchain’s operations. But the blockchain does it in a decentralized way that breaks the old paradigm of centralized consensus, when one central database used to rule transaction validity. A decentralized scheme (which the blockchain is based on) transfers authority and trust to a decentralized network and enables its nodes to continuously and sequentially record their transactions on a public “block,” creating a unique “chain”—the blockchain.
Of course, the blockchain is destined to affect almost everything. But the challenge is in knowing how, when, and what the impact will be. The first chapter was essential for laying out the multiple capabilities of the blockchain technology, paving the way for your understanding of its usage, and making you believe that peer-to-peer transactions can be finalized on the blockchain, without known intermediaries, except for the blockchain itself.
Blockchain is not a one-trick pony. It is a multi-headed beast that takes many forms.
If you see it as a technology, then you will implement it as a technology. If you see it as a business change enabler, then you will think about business processes. If you discern the legal implications, you will be emboldened by its new governance characteristics. And if you see it as a blank sheet of paper for designing new possibilities ...