[community] Revisiting the discussion about blockchains...

Peter Pennefather p.pennefather at gmail.com
Fri Jun 10 21:24:35 UTC 2016


An important issue is the distinguish between two outcomes using the
algorithms underlying this technology. On the one hand distributed ledgers
are set up that can facilitate access and capacity for making a registered,
permanent entry into that ledger in a way that can be witnessed by all
without revealing the owner or content of that entry.  On the other hand
those ledger entries are owned by someone who can authorize a network
mediated transaction that is deemed to have a real world value. The first
outcome transforms activity into data deemed within a certain market to
have a certain potential value.  The second allows that value to be
extracted by someone else in exchange for some consideration to the
original owner. The velocity and anonymity of those transactions increase
opportunities.

The UK government has provided a nice overview of this technology:
www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/492972/gs-16-1-distributed-ledger-technology.pdf



Peter Pennefather,
Academic Director, Laboratory for Collaborative Diagnostics
Professor, Leslie Dan Faculty of Pharmacy
University of Toronto, 144 College St, Toronto, ON.
M5S 3M2 CANADA
cell 647-773-3987; office 416-946-7840
p.pennefather at utoronto.ca


On Fri, Jun 10, 2016 at 10:45 AM, Jutta Treviranus <jutta.trevira at gmail.com>
wrote:

> Thanks John, what better way to use an amazing community of diverse minds
> than to explore these emerging topics.
>
> To your definition, the first application was in cryptocurrency (bitcoin).
> I’m not that interested in this aspect. Many people are talking about it as
> a decentralized trust mechanism for applications that have nothing to do
> with cryptocurrency.
>
> Here is a more generic definition:
> = "a distributed cryptographic ledger shared amongst all nodes
> participating in the network, over which every successfully performed
> transaction is recorded". [1]
>
> See, from Rachel O'Dwyer: How the Blockchain Might Support a Commons
>
> http://p2pfoundation.net/Blockchain
>
> Jutta
>
>
>
> > On Jun 10, 2016, at 10:23 AM, John W (personal) <pickupwillis at gmail.com>
> wrote:
> >
> > ...gee, you like simple questions, Jutta :-)
> >
> > For info of any of us who might be shy to say 'what's a blockchain
> again?'
> > -
> >
> > Techopedia explains Blockchain
> >
> > The block chain ledger helps to provide transparency for transactions.
> > Although many bitcoin transactions are in some ways anonymous, the block
> > chain ledger can link individuals and companies to bitcoin purchases and
> > ownership by allowing individual parties, called miners, to process
> > payments and verify transactions. Rather than a central company presiding
> > over the use of bitcoin, these block chain originators serve central
> roles
> > in the management and administration of this alternative currency system.
> >
> >
> > On Fri, Jun 10, 2016 at 10:10 AM, Jutta Treviranus <
> jutta.trevira at gmail.com>
> > wrote:
> >
> >> Last year I broached the topic of blockchains to many people on this
> list,
> >> asking what the implications and opportunities were for inclusive
> design.
> >> How could we make use of a fully decentralized immutable technical
> system
> >> without intermediaries (e.g., trusted diversification of academic
> >> credentialing without academic institutions as gatekeepers) and what
> were
> >> the risks for an area currently dependent on regulations for
> intermediaries
> >> (e.g., regulating UBER for ridesharing vs. a completely distributed
> person
> >> to person ridesharing system)?
> >>
> >> Several of you gave very good arguments for dismissing blockchain
> >> technologies. I spoke to Tim Berners Lee about the implications of
> >> blockchains at the WWW2016 conference and he maintained that the same
> >> functionality can be derived from existing Web technologies and
> standards.
> >> He said the same later in his keynote address.
> >>
> >> Since then Don Tapscott and his son have released a book on the
> potential
> >> of blockchains:
> >>
> http://dontapscott.com/2015/06/blockchain-revolution-the-brilliant-technology-changing-money-business-and-the-world/
> >> <
> >>
> http://dontapscott.com/2015/06/blockchain-revolution-the-brilliant-technology-changing-money-business-and-the-world/
> >>>
> >>
> >> ….and our friends at the Internet Archive co-hosted a summit on the
> topic
> >> (unfortunately I couldn’t go because of all the things happening here
> this
> >> week) that included Tim, Vint Cerf, Brewster Kahle and others. See:
> >> http://www.decentralizedweb.net <http://www.decentralizedweb.net/>
> >>
> >> I wanted to revisit this discussion…. not necessarily limited to the use
> >> of blockchains specifically (for one thing the power consumption of
> >> maintaining and growing them seems to be prohibitive) but how to achieve
> >> the functions that blockchains promised.
> >>
> >> What are your thoughts?
> >>
> >> Jutta
> >>
> >>
> >>
> >> ________________________________________
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> >>
> >
> >
> >
> > --
> > *John D. Willis | *
> > *CMRP, MDes *Inclusive design, strategy and research
> > Toronto CANADA
> >
> > Web: www.jdwillis.ca
> > LinkedIn: https://ca.linkedin.com/in/tojohnw
> > Twitter: @TOjohnw
> > Skype: johnwillis416
> > ________________________________________
> > Inclusive Design Community (community at lists.idrc.ocadu.ca)
> > To manage your subscription, please visit:
> http://lists.idrc.ocadu.ca/mailman/listinfo/community
>
> ________________________________________
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