What you'll find below are some of the best articles on distributed ledger technologies that were shared in the CTOdaily newsletter in 2018.
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When you use the internet, especially when you use a larger company's services, your data will most likely be stored on a server and you must take it on faith that your data will be left alone. Companies like Blockstack, a platform for decentralized internet apps, are trying to change this with the decentralised web. Services like these store your data in an encrypted form on a network of computers unable to read your data. The encryption keys needed to unscramble this data would never leave your own devices, meaning that unlike with most of the online services you use, your data would be solely under your control. There are a number of startups working to create decentralised versions of existing centralised platforms, like Storj for cloud storage, the p2p marketplace OpenBazaar, and DTube - a decentralised YouTube. The privacy implications of existing technologies are becoming all the more salient as the months roll on, so applications and services that stand to provide us with greater control over who has access to our data and how they use it may be a welcome change.
Santiago Siri is building a blockchain based platform called democracy.earth that he hopes will help redefine how democracies function in the digitally augmented 21st century. "The vision is a radical departure from the one-person, one-vote, once-every-year-or-two trip to the ballot box we are familiar with—and by which, in Siri’s view, we are so ill-served. Users of Democracy.Earth’s one-size-fits-all governance platform—code-named Sovereign—would have infinite flexibility to vote on any kind of topic or person, whenever they log on. In the Democracy.Earth future, every day will be election day, and the ballot will include anything that enough of us think should be there." For insight into how they're tackling one of the most intriguing and potentially world-changing projects, check out the piece.
Governments need to lead the way and put all of their services onto distributed ledger technologies, according to IBM's general manager of blockchain, Marie Wieck. Distributed ledger technologies like blockchain provide the ability to maintain information integrity and trust at scale. Dubai is currently leading the world at integration of blockchain technologies into its government services, following a mandate to go completely paperless by the end of 2021. According to global technology research firm Gartner, the business value-add of blockchain will exceed $3.1 trillion by 2030.
Following the recent censorship and privacy scandals of online juggernauts like Facebook and YouTube, people are jumping ship to blockchain-powered rivals as they provide users with greater control over their data and content. One video hosting company, DTube, runs on the blockchain network Steem, which allows users to pay creators and commenters in digital tokens. A number of video creators on YouTube have jumped ship, due to the recent controversy surrounding YouTube as it was demonetising videos from certain creators. Two-year-old Steemit has about a million accounts and added some 120,000 last month, according to the CEO.
Blockchain (a subset of distributed ledger technology - DLTs) has a lot of people excited. Some think it will have transformative effects similar to that of the internet. If the internet is how we transfer information across the world, blockchain or DLTs are how we can maintain this information's integrity - and so much more. This piece deals with where blockchain came from, what it does, and how you make one.
Distributed ledger technologies like blockchain provide us with huge opportunities in trusting the data we have access to. This is true for marketing as well. A big issue for brands and advertisers today is that there is a lack transparency and accountability when it comes to trying to figure out how their ad money is being spent. Forrester reports that as much as 56% of all display ad dollars were lost to fraudulent inventory in 2016. This is where distributed ledger technologies like blockchain come in. "Blockchain can make data-driven marketing more transparent by validating and analysing every consumer’s journey through verified ad delivery, confirming that a real person saw the ad as per the specifics of a media contract."
Kenya plans to use distributed ledger technologies to improve the integrity of their upcoming elections. The technology will offer real-time results, reduce perceptions of opacity and increase transparency -- all things everyone would like when going about the democratic process. The other day, I shared this article on blockchain and voting and how it could affect democracy world-wide. I highly recommend checking it out! I'm looking forward to seeing how this deployment of DLT tech plans out.