In this book, Stephen P. Williams describes the blockchain in detail and how it relates to our lives today. He explains what a blockchain is, why we might want to use one and some possible applications of them.
“Blockchain” is a book by Stephen P. Williams that explores the concept of blockchain and how it can be used in many different ways. The author goes into detail about what blockchain is, why it’s important, and what its uses are. Read more in detail here: what’s blockchain.
Are you seeking for a synopsis of Stephen P. Williams’ book Blockchain? You’ve arrived to the correct location.
I scribbled down a few noteworthy observations while reading Stephen P. Williams’ book last week.
If you don’t have time, you don’t have to read the whole book. The book synopsis below provides an overview of all you can learn from it.
Let’s get this party started right now.
I’ll talk on the following points in this Blockchain: The Next Everything book summary:
What is Stephen P. Williams’ Blockchain about?
Blockchain examines the technology that many consider to be the most revolutionary invention since the Internet.
The book shows how this unhackable digital ledger works, how it subverts established hierarchies, and why experts believe it has the potential to transform organizations, governments, finance, culture, and communication.
What is the name of the author of Black Edge?
Stephen P. Williams is a nonfiction author and journalist. He’s written for the New York Times, Newsweek, and GQ, and now heads Wm. Williams, a sustainable fashion start-up that uses blockchain technology to perform distributed production.
Who is Stephen P. Williams’ Blockchain For?
Blockchain Stephen P. Williams’s work isn’t for everyone. If you are one of the following folks, you may like the book:
- Nerds interested in blockchain technology
- Sociologists, economists, and artists
- People who are disillusioned with today’s social and economical frameworks
Book Summary for Blockchain by Stephen P. Williams
From financial experts to conceptual artists, almost everyone is talking about blockchain these days. Blockchain was created to support Bitcoin, but it remained undiscovered for years until engineers recognized its potential went well beyond that of currency. Because of all the excitement, many philosophers are dubbing this new technology the “next enlightenment.”
What is the origin of blockchain? Blockchain software is essentially an unhackable, irreversible ledger. Its distributed technology provides unparalleled openness and accountability, endangering conventional middlemen including as banks, corporations, and even governments.
Don’t worry if it seems perplexing. You’ll discover how technology works, how it’s being used to business, economics, climate change, and the arts, and what it may mean for society in the future in this book synopsis.
The blockchain is a groundbreaking new sort of ledger.
According to Google, blockchain is a digital ledger or book that records accounts and monetary transactions.
Consider this to make it seem dull: ledgers are the pillars of civilisation. Without them, we couldn’t have developed cities or operated effective marketplaces. They help us keep track of our accounts, verify home ownership, and show citizenship.
The international economy runs on a centuries-old ledger system known as double-entry bookkeeping. The two columns of information in these ledgers are debit and credit. A transaction is error-free if the buyer’s and seller’s credit and debit balances match, unless there is a mistake in the buyer’s or seller’s records.
In double-entry accounting, middlemen are required to build confidence in the system and verify that transactions are genuine and correct. Brokers, bankers, and other middlemen verify the authenticity of transactions.
However, throughout history, this technique has not always shown to be accurate. During the 2008 financial crisis, it was found that several huge firms, such as Enron and Lehman Brothers, used numerous sets of records to hide their real financial activities. These firms have been able to abuse the system throughout the years to launder vast sums of money.
Since the Internet’s inception, many have believed that it would put a stop to such offenses. However, because to the Internet’s vulnerability, big financial transactions have been hacked in the past.
All of this might be changed by blockchain technology. The blockchain was first created to support the cryptocurrency Bitcoin. Every purchase or transaction is recorded on the blockchain, ensuring that a digital currency cannot be spent twice. To view the transactions online, all you need is an Internet connection.
Verification, in addition to credit and debit, is a third column on the blockchain ledger. It eliminates the requirement for third parties. The system is built on trust.
From how artists may confirm the origin of their work to how currencies like the dollar are valued, blockchain technology is already revolutionizing everything. By removing the danger of manipulation and ballot loss, voting might be made even more safe.
Is this technology really reliable? How do we know? The blockchain differs from traditional ledgers in that it is unhackable and immutable. In the next part, we’ll go through it in further depth.
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Lesson 2: Blockchain technology is unhackable and unchangeable.
On a clear night, imagine staring up at the stars. A celestial network is made up of light beams that connect the stars. A blockchain looks like this: it’s a network of phones, laptops, and other electronic devices.
The blockchain system is safe because it uses linked blocks to represent information. For instance, you could wish to keep track of how many rubber trees there are in the Amazon jungle. Data may be added to the “blockchain” of connected blocks when it is recorded into a digital collection known as a “block.”
Every node, or device involved with the chain, must first accept the new block before it can be added, a process known as the protocol. Because everyone on the network has equal decision-making ability, the blockchain is a distributed technology.
The most frequent protocol approach is “proof of work,” in which each new block comes with a complex mathematical challenge that must be solved before it can be added to the chain. Special nodes known as miners compete to solve the challenge in order to earn Bitcoins throughout this process. To add blocks to the chain, proof of work requires a significant amount of computing resources, which decreases the chance of malevolent actors influencing the chain.
A cryptographic hash, which is a code made up of numbers and characters, is one of the phases towards solving the issue. Each block includes not only its own hash, but also the preceding block’s hash, ensuring that it is consistent with the rest of the blockchain.
Why may Bitcoins be mined but not modified on the blockchain – for example, to claim ownership of someone else’s Bitcoin?
Because altering one block would put all hashes out of sync, announcing a break-in, this is the case. Because the blockchain is replicated to every node’s device, a hacker would have to modify hashes for every block in the chain as well as every node. The amount of computer power needed to finish the work grows with each new node in the chain.
Another way to phrase it is that the stronger a chain is, the more nodes it has.
Lesson 3: Distributed blockchain applications have enormous promise.
Unless you’re a computer programmer, there’s a strong chance you’ve never seen blockchain code. What you’ll interact with and see are distributed applications, or “dapps,” which blockchain allows.
The possibilities of these dapps are endless.
Smart contracts are one such example. A smart contract is a blockchain-based contract that has been agreed upon by both parties. An algorithm provides the payment in bitcoin once the contract’s requirements are met, and the transaction is recorded on the blockchain. Smart contracts minimize the need for centralized authority verification by automating bureaucracy.
Smart contracts are already being used widely in dapps. On Ethereum, a public blockchain that supports smart contracts and utilizes the cryptocurrency Ether, you may discover dapps that employ smart contracts. This enables you to accomplish things like document the genesis of a piece of art or date your film concept.
There are plenty additional smart contract options; all we need to do is apply our creativity.
Uber employs a single app to link drivers with clients and secure payment. A blockchain-based taxi app might connect directly to consumers without the need of a third party by utilizing smart contracts.
Now let’s take it a step farther. Consider purchasing a self-driving automobile in the future. Smart contracts might enable the automobile to operate as a taxi 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
If you activated a smart contract with the automobile, it may automatically replenish its gas tank if the tank is low. If a tire on the automobile goes flat, a smart contract would kick in, and the car would drive itself to have the tire patched.
Your self-driving vehicle will have made enough money to purchase another one by that time. After a second automobile has earned enough money to buy another, it may be able to buy another car on its own. There will be a complete fleet of autonomous taxis operating without owners in the future.
A distributed autonomous organization, or DAO, is a kind of business concept. It’s hard to say whether such a model will be effective right now. The concept alone demonstrates how useful blockchain may be.
Lesson 4: Distributed technologies indicate a shift away from centralized governance.
Blockchain may seem familiar to those who recall the buzz surrounding the Internet in the 1990s. Despite the fact that the Internet connected individuals, it did not deliver the egalitarian society that many had hoped for, since businesses such as Facebook monopolized the network to serve their own goals. This might be changed by the blockchain.
The reason for this is because dispersed systems give the public more power and access.
Think about investing. Throughout history, this practice has mostly been restricted to the upper crust. The lower classes have been unable to participate in this profitable activity due to bank fees, credit histories, and restricted access. A blockchain, on the other hand, may be joined by anybody, making it available for investment.
In the future, cryptocurrencies may potentially replace the current banking system. Because the US dollar is no longer a real object like gold, cryptocurrencies are as legitimate as dollars or any other money. As more individuals get interested in cryptocurrencies, a world without giant banks may not seem that far away.
Meanwhile, the United Nations, the World Economic Forum, and the Rockefeller Foundation are all striving to harness blockchain technology to empower disadvantaged farmers, voters, and others without access to banks.
Blockchain technology has no intrinsic moral intent. It stimulates a rethinking of hierarchies due to its dispersed nature, leading in a more fair type of capitalism.
Other sorts of commerce, such as those relating to rental rooms, will be enabled by blockchain dapps, much as smart contracts may replace the need for Uber. You may engage into a smart contract with the tenant that would operate the endeavor for you instead of paying fees to Airbnb as a central arbiter. Depending on your arrangement, the smart contract will either keep visitors out of the residence or charge them for a longer stay. With the peer-to-peer system, it would be a truly sharing economy.
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Lesson 5: Blockchains provide unparalleled privacy and transparency.
In one episode of the Portlandia TV series, a guy quizzed his server about the chicken they were considering buying. It makes fun of the increased need for information about the origins of our goods by questioning whether the chicken had any pals.
In the future, your phone could be able to show you how your turkey went from farm to table. Cargill, the firm that owns the Honeysuckle White brand, has previously developed a blockchain dapp that enables users to monitor precisely where their Thanksgiving turkeys originate from.
Furthermore, blockchain is laying the path for future degrees of openness that have never been seen before.
Fura, Everledger, and DeBeers are three firms working on blockchains to prevent blood diamond trafficking. The certification of a conflict-free diamond will be stored on the blockchain and will follow the diamond along the supply chain, with its location updated at each stage.
Not only would this allow purchasers to see blood diamonds and deny them at the time of sale, but it would also allow diamond miners to monitor where their stones end up and interact with those at the top of the supply chain. Diamond miners would have a meaningful say in how the system operates because they would be as essential to the buyer at the top of the supply chain as the buyer at the bottom.
Blockchains provide transparency while simultaneously significantly improving privacy.
Intimate lets pornographers and sex workers to advertise their services by utilizing cryptocurrencies and anonymous addresses. Users may keep their identities confidential while preserving their reputations throughout the platform, ensuring that circumstances are safe for everybody.
We’ve just discussed public blockchains so far. There are, however, private blockchains that are exclusively accessible by invitation. Businesses that deal with private information, such as health-care providers, understand the need of maintaining absolute privacy. Businesses, on the other hand, are starting to embrace it. The Hyperledger Fabric technology for private blockchains has already been used by IBM for important commercial activities, and others are sure to follow.
Despite this, firms opting out of transparency will have no impact on blockchain’s utopian promise. The public chains will continue to be under public control.
Lesson 6: Blockchain solutions that are environmentally beneficial are being created.
From farming to investment, blockchain technology has the potential to impact a broad variety of concerns. Blockchain networks, on the other hand, demand a lot of energy right now.
The proof-of-work protocol used by Bitcoin is one example of this. You may mine Bitcoins from your desktop PC at first. Today, Bitcoin’s blockchain is so busy that it needs a massive collection of computers that use a lot of energy. Because bitcoin mining is so profitable, a lot of bitcoin farms have sprung up all around the world.
As a consequence, the bitcoin network may sometimes require as much energy as Denmark.
In most circumstances, however, proof of work does not seem to be the most effective method of validating blocks on a blockchain. The Ethereum blockchain is a nice example. It is currently testing a “proof-of-stake” mechanism that does not need mining. Validator nodes, on the other hand, stake or wager that they will validate the following block. Those that capture the following block are rewarded financially. These approaches are targeted at lowering blockchain energy usage and increasing transaction speeds.
When we look at the situation from a different angle, we can see how blockchain technology might help with climate change solutions in a variety of ways.
One use of blockchain in the environmental sphere is carbon trading. By transforming carbon emissions into a tradable item, carbon-trading markets offer a financial incentive to mitigate air pollution. In collaboration with IBM, China’s Energy Blockchain Lab has created a new, more efficient platform for carbon asset trading based on the open-source Hyperledger blockchain.
Blockchain technology might potentially be used to create a transparent and accurate record for tracking greenhouse gas emissions. This will allow countries to monitor their progress toward the 2016 Paris Agreement’s carbon reduction objectives.
We might also use blockchain to monitor endangered species, make contributions more transparent, and confirm land ownership in order to combat deforestation.
There are several options available. We must embrace blockchain and continue to think of new ways to utilize it in order for it to make the world a better place.
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Blockchain encompasses much more than bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Computer experts are utilizing an unhackable, distributed digital ledger technology to revolutionize commerce and combat climate change.
Regardless of how the technology is used, it creates extraordinary openness and confronts the disparities that come with old structures.
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