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The Majority of the Business World Doesn’t Need Proof-of-Work, Says Hyperledger Executive Director

A growing number of legitimate business activities that have nothing to do with cryptocurrencies

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Hyperledger ED on Proof-of-Work

At the recent Open Source Leadership Summit in California, Executive Director of The Hyperledger Project, Brian Behlendorf, shared his views on the state of open-source blockchain technology with The Register. A key take-away from the chat was that most of the business world doesn’t need proof-of-work (the popular Bitcoin mechanism). Behlendorf believes that blockchains will play a prominent role in a growing number of legitimate business activities that have nothing to do with cryptocurrencies.

Blockchain to Play a Prominent Role in Business Activities

He also highlighted the fact that it is the prevalence of fraud in the cryptocurrency world which has invited doubt about blockchain technology in general, when in fact, blockchains are poised to play a prominent role in a growing number of legitimate business activities that have nothing to do with cryptocurrencies.

Hyperledger Is a Prime Example

His Hyperledger project is a prime example of this. The open-source collaborative effort which was created to advance cross-industry blockchain technologies includes leaders in finance, banking, Internet of Things, supply chains, manufacturing, and technology. Prominent Wall Street names that are premier members of the project include Accenture, Airbus, American Express, Baidu, Cisco, Fujitsu, IBM, Intel, JP Morgan and SAP.

Apart from its two production-ready blockchain frameworks, Fabric and Sawtooth, “Hyperledger has taken seven other initiatives (distributed ledger frameworks and tools) under its wing, ranging from an implementation of the Ethereum smart contract engine (Burrow) to a distributed digital identity system (Indy) to an interoperability platform for doing transactions across ledgers (Quilt),” all outside the cryptocurrency sphere, but very much extracting more value of the blockchain technology behind it. Examples cited by Behlendorf included:

  • IBM using the technology in an internal product financing chain with suppliers that they claim has created $60 million in value.
  • A project in the Philippines (in the development stage) which will allow customers of the six largest banks to move their data; transactions and credit histories – and control how it’s shared.

Hyperledger is thus, currently, supported by more than 190 companies, nonprofits, schools and government agencies. Behlendorf sees the potential for blockchain to really shake up things in the finance and healthcare sectors. Some examples are:

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