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What are blockchains?
Blockchains are a new kind of database technology pioneered by the digital currency Bitcoin; and now adapted for handling various tasks for the financial, legal and software industries. Blockchains differentiate themselves from conventional databases in the following ways:
- Lack of a single owner: One interfaces with a multitude of databases everyday. One of them store tweets, others store personal information and so on. Each of these generally have a single owner who can manipulate the database as per her will. Blockchains, on the other hand, distribute ownership over multiple people and companies, thereby ensuring that database rules cannot be arbitrarily altered.
- Cryptographic integrity and immutability: Unlike your excel file that does not save the history of how the current file came to be, blockchains record events such that no one can manipulate or raise questions about occurrences in the past. It is the perfect medium for recording financial transactions and prevent disputes.
- Have smart contract functionality: Blockchains enable users to make impartial, immutable, cheap, self-executing legal contracts with each other. Refer to the other links for understanding smart contracts.
What is a smart contract?
Why are smart contracts useful?
What can I build with smart contracts?
- Etherex – A system for exchanging assets without any middleman such as a broker, stock exchange, central securities depository or a bank.
- MakerDAO – A central bank that creates its own price stable cryptocurrency called Dai
- GroupGnosis – A platform that enables a big group of humans to forecast the future with stunning accuracy
- Colony – A platform enabling people to build complete organisations with business rules enforced by smart contracts
Where can I learn more about smart contracts
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