Adapt to succeed One of blockchain’s many attributes is its ability to facilitate transactions, without the need for multiple intermediaries. The idea is that people can transfer funds (or any form of data/information) to one another anywhere in the world, without the need to involve multiple banks, a change of currency and an accompanying exchange rate. It would seem logical that banks would be opposed to this as it could, in theory, do them out of a job. However, that couldn’t be further from the truth. If the coronavirus pandemic has taught us one thing, it’s that to survive in times of struggle; we must adapt.
Nowhere is this more evident than in the USA. As businesses and companies are closing left right and centre, only those with a keen ability to improvise and change the way they operate can survive. One excellent example of innovation and adaptation is from a Chicago pizza company that could no longer make ends meet selling pizza since all the punters disappeared. Instead of succumbing to the inevitable, admitting defeat and shutting up shop, the canny owners recognised that the temperature of the pizza oven was hot enough to melt plastics. Instead of cooking pizza in their oven, Dimitri Syrkin-Nikolau, owner of Dimi’s pizza, began making face shields for health workers1. Not only has the business remained open, but they’re also providing PPE to those most in need at a critical time. In short, adaption is vital.
Blockchain — an international project
It is not difficult to understand that big banks, law firms and global corporations must be just as flexible and able to adapt as these small businesses. Nobody is immune from the economic effects of coronavirus. The Bank of Lithuania (BoL) have recognised that blockchain can make many processes more straightforward while simultaneously incurring fewer costs. Instead of shunning the technology to preserve the status quo, BoL has shown they are willing to adopt disruptive technology to ensure their longevity. The bank has created a digital sandbox called LBChain — a platform to develop a wide range of blockchain solutions.
A variety of digital products have been tested including a cross-border payment system, smart contract for factoring process management, payment token, mobile POS and payment card solution, a crowdfunding platform and an unlisted share trading platform2. BoL aim to have some of these services available in Q4 of this year3. These solutions also come at a time when three prominent world leaders agree that digital currency is almost a given. Donald Trump, Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping, leaders of USA, Russia and China, form a somewhat unlikely alliance as they agreed that a blockchain-based digital currency, backed by gold, would be a promising development4.
The need for assurance
The development of all these blockchain projects, as well as the ongoing discussions of three of the world’s most renowned leaders, is evidence enough that blockchain has well and truly made it into the mainstream psyche. We still need to address several critical aspects of blockchain for complete worldwide adoption, particularly in the realm of smart contracts. Many of these blockchain projects operate now under the agreements encoded within digital or smart contracts. These pieces of computer code ensure a transaction goes ahead, once predefined conditions have been met. The challenge is, what happens a disagreement occurs post-transaction? Well, there aren’t any reliable or effective ways to dispute a transaction as yet.
Moreover, there aren’t any particularly useful ways to certify that information entered into a smart contract is valid and indisputable. We at The Proof of Trust have developed a mechanism to address both these potential pitfalls. Many have described smart contracts as the future of blockchain, and with their use cases virtually endless, it is essential we ensure their security5.
- Lussenhop, J. (2020). I’m using my pizza oven to toss masks for nurses. BBC News. [online] 10 Apr. Available at: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-us-canada-52232381 [Accessed 28 May 2020].
- www.lb.lt. (2020). LBChain. [online] Available at: https://www.lb.lt/en/lbchain [Accessed 28 May 2020].
- HUILLET, M. (2020). Bank of Lithuania Envisions Future Cross-Industry Blockchain Platform. [online] Cointelegraph. Available at: https://cointelegraph.com/news/bank-of-lithuania-envisions-future-cross-industry-blockchain-platform [Accessed 28 May 2020].
- EUROPE 2021, B. (2020). Trump, Putin and Jinping together stand for a global Blockchain based Currency System. [online] Medium. Available at: https://medium.com/@Blockchance/trump-putin-and-jinping-together-stand-for-a-global-blockchain-based-currency-system-eb6554f7700d [Accessed 28 May 2020].
- Hayes, M., Adair, C.-M. and Nolan, P. (2019). Smart Contracts: The Future of Blockchain? | Lexology. [online] www.lexology.com. Available at: https://www.lexology.com/library/detail.aspx?g=49a55296-d931-47cd-81bf-75e995acf99d [Accessed 28 May 2020].