How to use blockchain

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WATCH RELATED VIDEO: Blockchains: how can they be used? (Use cases for Blockchains)

How Blockchain Technology Can Benefit the Internet of Things

Emerging ownership models on the blockchain View all 4 Articles. We propose a new platform for user modeling with blockchains that allows users to share data without losing control and ownership of it and applied it to the domain of travel booking.

Our new platform provides solution to three important problems: ensuring privacy and user control, and incentives for sharing. It tracks who shared what, with whom, when, by what means and for what purposes in a verifiable fashion. The paper presents a case study of applying the framework for a hotel reservation system as one of the enterprise nodes of Multichain which collects users' profile data and allows users to receive rewards while sharing their data with other travel service providers according to their privacy preferences expressed in smart contracts.

The user data from the repository is converted into an open data format and shared via stream in the blockchain so that other nodes can efficiently process and use the data. The smart contract verifies and executes the agreed terms of use of the data and transfers digital tokens as a reward to the user.

The smart contract imposes double deposit collateral to ensure that all participants act honestly. The paper also presents a performance evaluation of the new platform by analyzing latency and memory consumption with selected three test-scenarios and measuring the transaction cost for smart contracts deployment.

The results show that the node responded quickly in all our cases with a befitting transaction cost. In recent years, there has been a rapid advancement in technological innovation and related research on collaborative approaches for sharing users' data among enterprises Shrestha and Vassileva, Research-backed data sharing practices are much needed to strike a balance between user privacy, enhanced user experience and profit for businesses Tenopir et al.

The questions of when and what data should be shared to whom Meadows, , and how the data owner should get credit or incentive to share their data are increasingly a matter of intense debate and research. User data is collected by different parties, for example, companies offering apps, social networking sites, and others, whose primary motive is to have enhanced business model while giving optimal services to their customers.

However, the collection of user data is associated with serious privacy issues. Some data are contributed voluntarily by the user; others are obtained by the system from observation of user activities, or inferred through advanced analysis of volunteered or observed data Poslad, The currently dominant model of ownership over user data, usually encoded in the service license agreements, presumes that ownership is transferred from the user to the enterprise collecting it and, if shared—to the entire network of businesses.

There are privacy and security problems associated with storing personal data. Even the most prominent online services have experienced security breaches and data theft.

When trust resides within a centralized service provider for all the storage of data, it could be affected with centrality issues such as intentionally deleting the user data or not delivering the user data due to a technical failure. Sharing user data across applications and enterprises helps to improve personalization of functionality, interface and options and thus creates a better user experience. However, there are problems associated with the security, privacy and user control of sharing user data.

Security of sharing has been addressed by standard security techniques as well as experimental approaches, for example, carrying out all the communication without trusting anybody and possibly replacing the centralized controlling authority Shrestha and Vassileva, Various advanced technologies have been deployed as computational backbones to collect and share user data including cloud computing services, RFID Radio-frequency identification , as well as various security technologies to protect the collected user data from hackers Shrestha, Federated learning McMahan and Ramage, allows to mine data scattered in distributed locations.

However, to be compliant with strong privacy legislation e. This is an obstacle since it is obtrusive for a user who does not see what there is to gain. So, it becomes hard or even impossible for users to remember what consent they have given to which enterprise and to keep track of who accesses their data and for what purpose.

A flexible mechanism for obtaining and renewing consent for data use and sharing is required that provides appropriate and meaningful incentives for users to capitalize from data sharing and ensures transparency for users to be aware of which of their dataset has been accessed, by whom, for what purpose and under what conditions. We address all these issues security, privacy, user-transparency and control, and incentives for data sharing by proposing a new platform for user modeling using distributed ledgers and smart contracts, relying on user-controlled privacy and data-sharing policies encoded in smart contracts.

It also supports creating incentives for users to share their data in terms of rewards micro-payments or credits encoded in smart contracts.

Thus, users become owners of their data and can decide how their data is collected and used, as well as shared, and benefit not only in terms of improved personalized experience with the service but also directly, for example, by participating in the share of the advertising revenue generated by the service provider. We present an implementation of the new platform to share user data in a decentralized fashion among different businesses providing services in the travel-booking domain and evaluate its performance.

This paper presents a significant extension of our previous work Shrestha et al. A distributed digital ledger blockchain system stores encrypted and hashed authenticated data, which is immutable, and any changes or mistakes can be traced back to their source. We used MultiChain Greenspan, and Ethereum Buterin, blockchains to provide an uneditable private record of all transactions made with user data. MultiChain, being a private blockchain, has the potential to replace traditional centralized databases used to store user data in a decentralized way offering more cryptographic auditing features.

Optionally we can store any published item off-chain that saves storage place and bandwidth. MultiChain, however, due to its current architecture, cannot support an access control mechanism, which the proposed platform needs, to provide users means to control how their data is shared and the rewards they get.

Therefore, we use Ethereum, which supports smart contracts and commits the contracts' transactions. The smart contracts govern accountability of access and provide incentives to the users and application owners for sharing user data. Combining the security and immutability of data stored in the blockchain, with the specific strengths of two popular blockchains—MultiChain and Ethereum—allows us to combine their advantages: proper data storage and data sharing and smart contracts for access control mechanisms.

In this way, our new platform addresses the shortcomings of traditional centralized user models used by internet businesses, which have security vulnerabilities, lack accountability, and take away the ownership, control and incentives for sharing of users over their data. The rest of the paper is organized as follows: Section II provides an overview of blockchain technology, MultiChain, Ethereum, and smart contracts.

A brief analysis of the existing frameworks for user data storage and sharing with their limitations is provided in section III. Section IV presents the proposed platform and its implementation for decentralized data sharing in a travel domain while ensuring users' privacy. Section V presents an evaluation of the performance of the implemented new platform by observing latency and memory consumption and measuring transaction costs while deploying the contracts.

In section VI, we provide a descriptive analysis of the result, and in section VII, we conclude our work. Blockchain is a data structure used to create a public or private distributed digital transaction ledger which, instead of resting with a single provider, is shared among a distributed network of computers. Distributed ledgers can be used, for example, to store critical assets in the supply chain to track their ownership and changes in state Shrestha and Vassileva, The data is stored in a distributed and redundant fashion in the blockchain, and each node verifies each transaction.

Therefore, it is hard for malicious parties to attack and manipulate the data to their advantage. The blockchain software pattern represents a digital ledger—a database with an immutable record of every transaction which has ever taken place. Each block aggregates a timestamped batch of transactions to be placed in the chain.

There is also a cryptographic signature to identify each block. Each block refers to the signature of the previous block in the chain, and that chain can be traced back to the very first Genesis block created in the chain. The key idea is that there is no centralized authority to determine what is true or what is false; instead, multiple distributed parties come to a consensus that is entered into the ledger and after that can be accessed by anyone Shrestha and Vassileva, Computationally, it is impracticable for anyone or less than a majority consensus to go back and alter the history because the blockchain represents a chronological chain of events.

Because the data is stored in distributed and redundant fashion and each transaction is verified by each node, it is tough for malicious nodes corrupted parties to attack and manipulate the data to their advantage.

Blockchain technology holds promise to transform data management in many domains. Although blockchain was developed as a platform for virtual currency, the applications of the technology have since quickly evolved to numerous fascinating use cases.

Many industries, including in the financial technologies fintech and banking sectors, commercial supply chains, healthcare, building industries, etc. In contrast to the centralized system, blockchain technology can be totally transparent to the users and very promising to incentivize users for data sharing. It also naturally supports building up incentives for users to share their data, in terms of rewards micro-payments or credits encoded in the smart contracts.

Details on the smart contracts are presented in section Smart Contracts. There are three categories of the blockchain, each with a slightly different set of protocols and consensus mechanisms. The consensus is to achieve agreement across validators or miners in a network on every new ledger of transactions. The blockchain is usually equipped with consensus protocols to tolerate unreliable involved parties or malicious nodes. The first category of blockchain is public in which anyone can participate in the chain and contribute to the consensus process.

The read permission or the right to see the public blockchain is always open to anyone with access to the internet. The second category of blockchain is a consortium in which pre-selected nodes control the consensus process.

The right to see the consortium blockchain remains either public or restricted to the participants. The third type is private blockchain in which the transactions are contained within a closed community and are of interest only to the members of the community present in the chain.

The private blockchain adopts the core idea of blockchain as a distributed ledger technology DLT but assigns the private validator, which is a member of a consortium or separate legal entities of the same organization. The right to see the private blockchain remains restricted to the participants. The blockchain can also be referred to as permissioned or permissionless, each with slightly different properties.

Permissioned blockchain is faster, usually, a trusted network offering managed upkeep and private membership such that members can contribute to the consensus process only after meeting some criteria. On the other hand, permissionless blockchain is slower, trust-free, open, transparent, and a public membership network such that any members can contribute to the consensus process without any restriction Wood, Therefore, depending upon the consensus mechanism, different blockchains may be suitable for distinct types of business use cases.

The next two sections review two major blockchains. MultiChain is a private permissioned blockchain that provides the privacy and control required in an easy to configure and deploy package Greenspan, Unlike any other blockchains, MultiChain solves the problems of privacy and openness via integrated management of user permissions with its three main objectives Greenspan, :.

To enable only the chosen participants to see the blockchain's activity,. To ensure that only selected transactions are permitted,.

To securely conduct mining without proof of work and its associated costs. MultiChain being a closed system allows participants to control the maximum block size and set all of the blockchain's parameters in a configuration file, thereby resolves the problems of scalability. Also, it only contains transactions that are of interest to the participants.

It can hash up to 1 GB per item Off-chain data into the blockchain, with the data itself delivered rapidly over the peer-to-peer P2P network. The miner of the Genesis first block automatically receives all administrative privileges, including the rights to manage the access permissions of other users Greenspan, The administrator can grant other participants any privileges for network transactions containing special metadata.

Ethereum is an open-source, public permissionless blockchain to create decentralized applications dapps where users interact with the online services in a distributed peer-to-peer manner that takes place on a censorship-proof foundation. Developers can design interfaces and business logic with any of the known programming languages and tools.

There is also an explicit option for Ethereum messages to contain data and the recipient of the Ethereum messages to return a response. The state in Ethereum is made of accounts each consisting of 20 bytes address and state transitions. An account contains four fields Buterin, , which are:. We used the Ethereum blockchain as a semi-financial application such as on-blockchain escrow, which allows users to enter into contracts and manage them using their ether to deal with non-monetary assets such as the user profile data.

Until now, Ethereum imposes a proof of work PoW consensus algorithm, which uses a high computational power i. In PoW, each node miner on the network competes to solve the cryptographic puzzle and reach consensus. As a node solves the puzzle, it broadcasts the block so that other nodes can validate the correctness of the hash value.

What Is the Future of Blockchain, and How Should Companies Use it?

The future of blockchain is near and banking isn't the only industry affected. See how law enforcement, ride-hailing, and others could also be impacted. What began as the basis of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, blockchain technology — essentially a virtual ledger capable of recording and verifying a high volume of digital transactions — is now spreading across a wave of industries. Industries from insurance to gaming to cannabis are seeing blockchain applications. Ultimately, the use cases for a transparent, verifiable register of transaction data are practically endless — especially since blockchains operate through a decentralized platform requiring no central supervision, making them resistant to fraud.

Using this kind of system blockchain mechanism makes itself traceable Machine learning models can use the data stored in the blockchain.

How does a transaction get into the blockchain?

Speculation on the value of blockchain is rife, with Bitcoin—the first and most infamous application of blockchain—grabbing headlines for its rocketing price and volatility. Cryptocurrency market value is subject to high variation due to the specific volatility of the market. Yet Bitcoin is only the first application of blockchain technology that has captured the attention of government and industry. Blockchain was a priority topic at Davos; a World Economic Forum survey suggested that 10 percent of global GDP will be stored on blockchain by Deep shift: Technology tipping points and societal impact , World Economic Forum, September , weforum. Multiple governments have published reports on the potential implications of blockchain , and the past two years alone have seen more than half a million new publications on and 3. Most tellingly, large investments in blockchain are being made. Despite the hype, blockchain is still an immature technology , with a market that is still nascent and a clear recipe for success that has not yet emerged. Unstructured experimentation of blockchain solutions without strategic evaluation of the value at stake or the feasibility of capturing it means that many companies will not see a return on their investments. With this in mind, how can companies determine if there is strategic value in blockchain that justifies major investments?

Blockchain Applications Certificate

how to use blockchain

Data61 provides funding as a member of The Conversation AU. Blockchain technology is not just useful for creating digital currencies such as Bitcoin or developing new financial technologies. Blockchains 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.

Blockchain can be defined as a chain of blocks that contains information. The purpose of blockchain is to solve the double records problem without the need for a central server.

Practical Blockchain Applications

Previously, she was…. He believes blockchain is likely to have a lot more staying power than popular cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, which he calls a flash in the pan. Blockchain is the underlying technology that many cryptocurrencies — like Bitcoin and Ethereum — operate on, but its unique way of securely recording and transferring information has broader applications outside of cryptocurrency. A blockchain is a type of distributed ledger. Nodes verify, approve, and store data within the ledger. This is different from traditional record-keeping methods which store data in a central place, such as a computer server.

Here's how companies can make sure they are blockchain-ready

Try out PMC Labs and tell us what you think. Learn More. The sudden development of the COVID pandemic has exposed the limitations in modern healthcare systems to handle public health emergencies. It is evident that adopting innovative technologies such as blockchain can help in effective planning operations and resource deployments. Blockchain technology can play an important role in the healthcare sector, such as improved clinical trial data management by reducing delays in regulatory approvals, and streamline the communication between diverse stakeholders of the supply chain, etc.

Exploring blockchain applications to accelerate impact. adolescent girls use cellphones and tablets. UNICEF/UN/Herwig. Blockchain technologies are.

Blockchain Platforms Reviews and Ratings

Blockchain first appeared in a whitepaper authored by the anonymous individual or group known as Satoshi Nakamoto. More than a decade on, the potential blockchain applications beyond cryptocurrency are garnering attention. By Michael Brenner September 25,

Emerging ownership models on the blockchain View all 4 Articles. We propose a new platform for user modeling with blockchains that allows users to share data without losing control and ownership of it and applied it to the domain of travel booking. Our new platform provides solution to three important problems: ensuring privacy and user control, and incentives for sharing. It tracks who shared what, with whom, when, by what means and for what purposes in a verifiable fashion. The paper presents a case study of applying the framework for a hotel reservation system as one of the enterprise nodes of Multichain which collects users' profile data and allows users to receive rewards while sharing their data with other travel service providers according to their privacy preferences expressed in smart contracts. The user data from the repository is converted into an open data format and shared via stream in the blockchain so that other nodes can efficiently process and use the data.

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Blockchain is a hot technology right now. Unfortunately, lots of pilots of blockchain technology have been for applications that haven't really been a good fit for the technology, ones where traditional relational databases, such as MySQL, work just as well, and perhaps even better. So how do you know if blockchain, which has been promoted for secure transactions , is a fit for your application project? The key to answering that question lies in understanding the fundamentals of Bitcoin and blockchain. Only when you understand the benefits and drawbacks can you address what criteria you might use to identify projects that are truly suitable for blockchain technology. A blockchain is the data structure that the Bitcoin cryptocurrency uses for its public ledger, where transactions are recorded.

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