While Bitcoin gets all the attention, the blockchain technology it’s based on can be used for a wide variety of applications, such as tracking ownership or the provenance of documents, digital assets, physical assets or voting rights. Here are some of the ways blockchains could improve business and government.
Bitcoin image from Shutterstock
Blockchain technology is not just useful for creating digital currencies such as Bitcoin or developing new financial technologies. They can be used for a wide variety of applications, such as tracking ownership or the provenance of documents, digital assets, physical assets or voting rights.
Blockchain technology was popularised by the Bitcoin digital currency system. But, essentially, a blockchain is just a special kind of database. The Bitcoin blockchain stores cryptographically signed records of financial transfers, but blockchain systems can store any kind of data. Blockchains can also store and run computer code called “smart contracts”.
What makes a blockchain system special is that it doesn’t run on just one computer like a regular database. Rather, many distributed processing nodes collaborate to run it. There