The Growing Impact of Blockchain, and Why It’s Important
When the world was first introduced to the Bitcoin back in 2008, a new era of digital technology sprung up that would change the lives of many and the world as we know it. Though, the direct impact of Blockchain technology may be difficult for many to notice in their everyday lives. The tech’s presence is there. Though the idea of cryptocurrencies and Blockchain’s has been thrown around for years, it was not until 2008 that the plans started becoming accepted by the masses.
What is the Blockchain?
Before diving in and discussing the growing impact of the Blockchain and why everyone should be in the “know,” readers should understand what the Blockchain is precise. Mostly, the Blockchain is a digital ledger, similar to accounting ledgers, the main differences being that it is decentralized, anonymous, and can function on millions of devices at the same time as long as users have internet access. Whereas, regular accounting ledgers store information about financial transactions. The Blockchain goes much deeper than that. Information about money, sports, real estate, votes, and even intellectual property can be integrated with and recorded on the Blockchain. All of the data on the Blockchain is protected by cryptographic principles and extremely complicated mathematical algorithms that are constantly improving and becoming more secure in unison with tech developments.
Industries it impacts
A lot of the talk surrounding Blockchain technology stems from the fact that it practically eliminates the need for middlemen and third parties. Due to transactions being carried out in a trustless manner, there is no requirement of intermediaries like banks, notaries, etc. The Blockchain can in reality, drastically change the financial service industry by eliminating high costs, complex bureaucracy, and the need for regulatory bodies to get involved. However, as research into this field continues, the benefits of the Blockchain don’t just cover the financial sector, but spill over to various other business, government, societal, and other sectors.
Current and foreseeable benefits
Blockchain technology can reduce a lot of transaction costs that businesses and individual experience. However, Blockchain technology was but the gateway for many other highly impactful technological developments. Such as the Ethereum Blockchain, Smart Contracts, and ICO’s. Smart contracts are programs that are automated, function on an “if”- “then” basis, and self-execute themselves based on predetermined conditions being met and verified. These smart contracts can cause costs associated with renting, contracting, making payments, and dealing with real estate properties to absolutely plummet, while the efficiency and speed of executing such actions improve. For example, a music artist could generate a smart contract and distribute creative content directly through the contract, without having to go through record producers, labels, and intermediaries to get their product out to the masses. This, of course, eliminates the need for royalties and excess fees that artists have commonly been encumbered by. Blockchain technology has the power to solve the issue of intellectual property in our increasingly digitalized time.
Since the introduction of the world-wide-web and the internet, piracy has been a constant issue for many content creators and intellectual property. Movie makers, graphic designers, writers, and artists have had their content was taken and pirated out through torrent based platforms. Allowing internet users to gain access to such content for free. This has created a lot of financial, trust, and security issues. However, services that utilize Blockchain technology to quell piracy issues have been popping up. Currently, artists have a few options for liking their work to digital registries and distributing them via the Blockchain, while retaining their rights, financial compensation, and solving the double-spend issue.
Companies like Uber, Spotify, Gett, and Netflix are aggregators. They provide a platform through which other users can offer their services while paying a service fee to these aggregators. However, the Blockchain and smart contracts allow individuals to deliver their services to the masses while retaining value for themselves. Soon, anyone will be able to launch their transportation services via a smart contract and have their business data integrated with the Blockchain. Imagine being an Uber driver, but as opposed to working under Ubers logo, you would work entirely for yourself, under your decisions, while enjoying unsolicited earnings for the services you provide.
Professional firms can draw benefits from the Blockchain while alleviating themselves from commonly experienced headaches. For example, shipment payments can be fully automated through the use of smart contracts. Packages can even be embedded with GPS functionality, and transportation payments and locations could be automatically distributed and recorded via the Blockchain. The fact that all of the data stored through smart contracts and the Blockchain is immutable, unchangeable, and irreversible provides for an extraordinarily secure way through which financial institutions can store their data for practically any application or use.
Everything will only get better.
Despite already cutting costs significantly and reducing a lot of hassles that individuals are encumbered by when conducting their day to day deeds, Blockchain technology will inevitably continue to develop at a progressive rate. Many cryptocurrencies provide for a great store of wealth through which investors can experience phenomenal gains. Smart contracts shave away the need for third parties. Large, multinational organizations are already trying to figure out how they can adopt Blockchain technology to simplify their business process. The price of a Bitcoin recently rippled through the $6,000 limit, with more and more people turning their attention towards the crypto industry and its benefits. Though, society can not predict where this technology is headed in the near future. The Blockchain will become increasingly more important in societies everyday lives. With governments such as Russia, China, Korea, and The United States already figuring out how to work with the Blockchain to open their citizens to its benefits. One thing is for certain though: Blockchain is here to stay, and the next age of workforce and enterprise industry will experience invaluable propositions by embracing the technology.