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IBM Unveils Blockchain As a Service Based On Open Source Hyperledger Fabric Technology (techcrunch.com) 42

IBM has unveiled its "Blockchain as a Service," which is based on the open source Hyperledger Fabric, version 1.0 from The Linux Foundation. "IBM Blockchain is a public cloud service that customers can use to build secure blockchain networks," TechCrunch reports, noting that it's "the first ready-for-primetime implementation built using that technology." From the report: Although the blockchain piece is based on the open source Hyperledger Fabric project of which IBM is a participating member, it has added a set of security services to make it more palatable for enterprise customers, while offering it as a cloud service helps simplify a complex set of technologies, making it more accessible than trying to do this alone in a private datacenter. The Hyperledger Fabric project was born around the end of 2015 to facilitate this, and includes other industry heavyweights such as State Street Bank, Accenture, Fujitsu, Intel and others as members. While the work these companies have done to safeguard blockchain networks, including setting up a network, inviting members and offering encrypted credentials, was done under the guise of building extra safe networks, IBM believes it can make them even safer by offering an additional set of security services inside the IBM cloud. While Jerry Cuomo, VP of blockchain technology at IBM, acknowledges that he can't guarantee that IBM's blockchain service is unbreachable, he says the company has taken some serious safeguards to protect it. This includes isolating the ledger from the general cloud computing environment, building a security container for the ledger to prevent unauthorized access, and offering tamper-responsive hardware, which can actually shut itself down if it detects someone trying to hack a ledger. What's more, IBM claims their blockchain product is built in a highly auditable way to track all of the activity that happens within a network, giving administrators an audit trail in the event something did go awry.
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IBM Unveils Blockchain As a Service Based On Open Source Hyperledger Fabric Technology

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  • By centralizing authority???
    • by ASDFnz ( 472824 )

      Basicly. It is a valid use of blockchain technology if you don't mind having trusted entities.

      Bitcoin unaffected. Ethereum on the other hand....

    • by AHuxley ( 892839 )
      Compliance with all US banking regulations :)
  • by hsmith ( 818216 ) on Monday March 20, 2017 @09:36PM (#54079017)
    We've reached peak buzzword for blockchain in the last 6 months. It'll balance our national debt, cure cancer, and make everyone happy according to all the con artists, errr, sales people pitching it as the be all end all.
    • by EvilSS ( 557649 )

      We've reached peak buzzword for blockchain in the last 6 months. It'll balance our national debt, cure cancer, and make everyone happy according to all the con artists, errr, sales people pitching it as the be all end all.

      So it's like... everything ever. Welcome to the Hype Cycle! [wikipedia.org]

  • From what I understand, an advantage of Fabric is that it allows selective distribution, unlike a traditional blockchain with a global distribution of the "truth" in a more granular way than possible with a permission based ledger. This kinda marries the business benefit of a normal selective network and that of using a distributed ledger. I am not a programmer, this is my interpretation. This selective distribution makes the blockchain interesting for more solutions for example in financial services. Consi
    • I am not sure... seems centralizing/clustering the system into many parts is opposite the concept of a open network where all participates vote on the validity of all transactions. They might have a way to keep votes localized for segregated transactions and then have the results accepted as valid by the rest of the system but still seems like a vector to create inconsistencies and disputes.

      At that point you might as well get rid of the complexity of segregation/sharding and go with a central trusted autho

    • by BBCWatcher ( 900486 ) on Monday March 20, 2017 @10:24PM (#54079249)
      Once you spend even a few minutes trying to understand how financial and other industries operate (and want to operate in the future), you quickly realize that one size does not fit all. There are a few Blockchain use cases when it makes sense (if you can meet the scalability requirements) to have an open network, to distribute every transaction record (in whole form) to every node, and to have a "flat" consensus mechanism, with every node getting one equal vote. An awful lot of real world use cases don't fit that particular formula -- maybe most of them. Yet Blockchain, as a solution approach, still makes a great deal of sense if you can relax those artificial restrictions. That's exactly what the Hyperledger/Linux Foundation community has done. The Hyperledger 1.0 network can be permissioned, can avoid distributing every record (contents) to every node (but still maintains the chain itself), and offers pluggable consensus mechanisms. And you don't have to consume the equivalent of Holland's total electricity production, and climbing, to make it work -- far from it. That's flexible, and that's significant progress. It's also open source.
    • IBM CEO Ginny Rometty gives speeches at Fintech conferences all the time. They are available on YouTube. One oft-repeated phrase:
      "Blockchain will do for transactions what the internet did for information".
      BitCoin had no buy-in from large multinationals or any governments, yet, it was successful. These new business-friendly blockchain implementations absolutely DO.

  • by Nkwe ( 604125 )
    Not bad, a bullshit bingo win in the title alone.
  • I was wondering if a "Digital Assets Property Record Office" can be created using blockchain, so when I buy a Def Leppard song on iTunes it get registered that I got that property and it will also be recognized on Google Play Music and others. And the same applies to my games, so don't keep re-buying the Mortal Kombat 2.
    • There's a company called Everdreamsoft [everdreamsoft.com] (I have a friend working there) that has a working prototype for in-game assets.

      Buy (on a market place) or receive (in one of the games) an asset (usally cards for a card game), then you can use that asset in any other of the games that you play. A blockchain is used to keep track of who has what assets are in possession of which player.
      (No steam-like central authority).

  • mostly by selling it to people who have no idea what it is but trigger on a buzzword or two.

  • e.g. that you get to decentralize your database and maybe get your users to pony up the computer time/electricity you're currently paying through the nose for at a datacenter?

To do two things at once is to do neither. -- Publilius Syrus