There’s been a lot of press about Blockchain technology in recent months. Simply stated, Blockchain enables and manages transactions and data sharing—bringing an unprecedented level of security, transparency, and efficiency never before possible. Given how fundamental ‘transactions’ are to how we function in society, this evolutional technology will have a transformative effect, not just on business, but also on how we live.
With over 20 years of experience in the technology field, Mark Parzygnat, Program Director, IBM Blockchain, and Presenter at IPM Day 2017 shares his enthusiasm, “Blockchain is the most exciting technology to come along in my entire career. For the past three years, I’ve devoted my efforts to championing IBM’s internal use and application development efforts, as well as promoting Blockchain to the world through academia, industry conferences, and the Linux Foundation.”
The Linux Foundation is the governing body that is helping to promote the open source standards. In order to gain collaboration and get the technology moving, there has to be support from a worldwide community. Hyperledger is the fastest growing initiative in The Linux Foundation’s history and Hyperledger Fabric, the work Mark has led, includes collaboration with over 159 engineers from 28 organizations around the globe.
While Blockchain has been around for quite a while, it was originally associated with Bitcoin; however, ‘crypto-currency’ is just one application. Mark explains,
“Distributed ledger technology requires an agreement among any group of players consisting of just two parties or all participants in your supply chain, for example. Blockchain takes a basic transaction and elevates it to the level of a team sport—one that goes through a consensus process before any settlement is reached.”
“It also creates a permanent ledger that can never be changed, allowing you to go back and have a full audit history of transactions against a specific asset. You can imagine its use in financial applications, or other industries where there is an inherent risk, such as pharmaceuticals, chemicals, or energy.”
While Blockchain is still in its infancy, it is rapidly gaining popularity with developers in large enterprises who can envision a wealth of applications for an open and secure ledger. This is relevant to Project and Program Managers because they will need to understand the implications for business processes, as well as where and how it may be piloted initially. Ideal applications include those involving supply chain, financials, medical records, or any situation where you want to share a transaction among a group of people to validate that things are legitimate.
There is a continuing debate regarding Blockchain platforms happening right now and IBM is focusing on that. The question involves whether networks should be permission-based, so that you have some knowledge as to whom you are collaborating with, permission-less, or both.
Don’t miss Mark’s presentation, Blockchain—Coming to a Transaction Near You, on November 2, at IPM Day 2017. Register here.
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