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What is blockchain?
Blockchain is undoubtedly one of the biggest buzzwords in technology right now. But what is the blockchain? And what is all the hype really about? Simply put, the blockchain is an addition only transaction record.

What this means is that new information can be written onto the blockchain, but older information, which is stored in blocks, cannot be edited, removed, or adjusted in any way. This is accomplished through cryptography, the practice of writing codes, which links freshly added blocks to the existing blockchain. Because all data containing blocks are woven together (as a chain), it is impossible to remove or change older blocks. This is because by doing so, data held in previous blocks would be invalidated.


Extreme security

Blockchain is an extremely secure technology, which is amplified by the fact that blockchain is also a decentralized technology. Unlike traditional internet platforms, blockchain technology relies on a decentralized, consensus driven model. What this means is that there is no central authority overseeing the roll out of a blockchain. Instead, a number of computers are connected to a network where, in order to deter hackers, they are required to solve mathematical proofs before adding to the blockchain. Once a proof is solved, the solution is shared amongst users who in turn must validate the solution of the proof by coming to a shared consensus. Once the proof has been verified, results are shared across the given network. Most importantly after consensus is given, new data containing blocks can be added to the blockchain.

The value of blockchain

Blockchain technology allows users to keep track of digital records (i.e. a digital currency such as Bitcoin) without the need for a centralized record-keeper (i.e. a traditional bank). The value of blockchain technology therefore is the ability to verify transactions, records, and exchange digital goods in a transparent, decentralized, and efficient manner.

Read a blogpost “Decentralized and centralized exchanges – what’s the difference?” >>

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