If you're interested in technology, there's a good chance you’ve probably heard the terms Bitcoin, Crypto, Ethereum, or even "distributed, decentralized ledgers."
You’ve probably heard people talk about cryptocurrency and encryption algorithms, about the end of "intermediaries" and so on.
It's easy to assume that cryptocurrency (eg: Bitcoin, Ripple, Ethereum, Litecoin, etc.) are the same as blockchain. They're not.
Cryptocurrenciesare a clever application of a much cleverer technology –the Blockchain.
In this post, I will cover some of the basic concepts of the blockchain so you understand what it is, how it must be conceptualized, and what can be built on top of it.
But as with all things, they make more sense if you understandwhythey were invented, before you get into what they do. That context will help you grasp what problem the blockchain was designed to solve.
但是，与所有事物一样，如果您在了解它们的用途之前了解了它们被发明的原因，它们就更有意义。该上下文将帮助您掌握区块链旨在解决的问题。为什么要使用区块链？(Why use blockchain?)
Great question. So glad you asked. Let's sit back and do a small thought experiment.
What happens if you and your best friendindependentlyand separatelyconduct the same petition campaign? Let’s say it’s for the “Free the Hamsters” cause.
Let's say you conduct it in an identical sequence across the same suburb, but come up with different sets of signatures on the petition. Which version of the signed petition is the “source of truth”?
You would need to trace back your separate trails, one signature at a time, to locate thelastdiscrepancy. And then you'd have to work further back to identify the first result that diverged between your signature sheets. Prior to that root divergence, all other signatures on the two lists should match up.
You then know that prior to that divergence. Both lists are in accord, so those signatures represent the minimum number of people who signed to support freeing the hamsters.
While that may work well for hamsters and small suburban surveys, it doesn’t work so well in the digital world. Or voting, banking, financial transactions, transferring land title, discharging contractual obligations etc. You need independent and “trusted third parties” to verify a chain of events, and solemnly reassure you that the "chain of custody" was unbroken.
A "chain of custody" can sometimes also be called the "provenance" – they both mean the same thing: the sequence of historical events concerning the data in question.
That’s why you have governments having the final say on your identity, and votes need to be physically counted and recounted by hundreds of volunteers, and clerks in dingy offices maintain ledgers and certificates to confirm whether or not you own your farm/white picket-fenced bungalow.