Is blockchain a good fit for your business?

Posted in: Business Insights

While there may be a lot of hype around blockchain, the technology is here to stay, and it’s already delivering value. In fact, the global blockchain technology market is predicted to grow to 2.3 billion U.S. dollars by 2021, according to Statista. And because those with firsthand blockchain experience are in the minority, it may still seem an arcane area of technology, where blockchain enthusiasts are involved in speculative activities like mining and trading cryptocurrencies. So, what is the real potential of blockchain? What does it look like?  How can we interact with blockchain technology to set up a real-world application?

Join Pythian Principal Consultant Warner Chaves for an on-demand webinar, Introduction to Blockchain with Ethereum on Azure, to learn about blockchain and to get step-by-step guidance on setting up an Ethereum Blockchain.  

First, here’s a bit of background on blockchain technology. The blockchain is “an incorruptible digital ledger of economic transactions that can be programmed to record not just financial transactions but virtually everything of value,” according to Don & Alex Tapscott, authors of Blockchain Revolution (2016). It maintains a constantly growing list of records, called blocks. Each block has a timestamp and a link to a previous block.

A critical characteristic of blockchain is that no central authority is necessary to trust the content of the ledger. This is very different from a relational database that is located in just one location or handled by one company. In that case, you’re always trusting either the individuals that manage the system or the company itself to trust the content of the database.

Blockchain has some useful real-world applications, including deploying smart contracts based on distributed ledgers. A smart contract on blockchain represents external agents: people, machines, or programs, and holds a balance and contract code. The source and content of the contract is trustworthy as it’s authenticated through public key cryptography.

So how do you know if your application is well suited for a blockchain-based distributed ledger? Here are a few criteria for determining if the technology is a good fit:

  • You’re looking at shared business processes among different parts of a company or multiple companies, or even amongst the world.
  • You have multiple parties that want to share and update data.
  • Verification and tamper proofing of records are top requirements for the solution.
  • And finally, if removing intermediaries could decrease the cost or the complexity of the solution, then a distributed ledger might be a good fit.

By the way, if you want to find out more about blockchain and its applications, and get a demo of how to set up an Ethereum blockchain on Azure, you can view the on-demand webinar now.

Here’s a bit more about the webinar:

Get started with blockchain: A step-by-step demo of Ethereum on Azure

There’s no better way to understand blockchain than by seeing it in action. Our Introduction to Blockchain with Ethereum on Azure on-demand webinar provides that firsthand insight. It covers blockchain basics and features a step-by-step demonstration of how to set up a full Ethereum Blockchain.

Watch the Introduction to Blockchain with Ethereum on Azure webinar now and come away with a better understanding of:

  • The basics of blockchain and smart contracts
  • The best use cases for blockchain
  • What it means to mine Bitcoins
  • How distributed ledgers enable applications that deliver transparency and efficiency
  • How Azure lets you quickly deploy your own test network
  • The tools available to help you get started faster
  • Resources to help you learn more about blockchain and Azure.


About the Author

Microsoft Data Platform MVP and SQL Server MCM, Warner has been recognized by his colleagues for his ability to remain calm and collected under pressure. His transparency and candor enable him to develop meaningful relationships with his clients, where he welcomes the opportunity to be challenged. Originally from Costa Rica, Warner is fluent in English and Spanish and, when he isn’t working, can be found watching movies, playing video games, and hosting board game nights at Pythian.

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