IBM and Intel Chase Blockchain Gold, But Demonstrate a Lack of Understanding

by Tim Sloane 0

The blockchain is undoubtedly the most interesting invention to have come along in years. The short eight-page paper “Bitcoin: A Peer-to-Peer Electronic Cash System” apparently authored by Satoshi Nakamoto is a must read for everyone interested in learning about Bitcoin. This blog assumes the reader is generally familiar with the contents of this paper since it is not overly complex and is the basis of Bitcoin.

The paper offers a mathematical proof that trust can be assured within a distributed open environment without a central authority. All it takes to accomplish this is a sufficient number of equally capable systems competing to solve a difficult calculation. Based on the fact it Bitcoin requires distributed systems competing on a computational problem, both IBM and Intel have decided that this makes them relevant to Bitcoin and the open ledger Bitcoin maintains.

While perhaps it does make IBM and Intel relevant from a systems perspective, how it makes them relevant from a business perspective is a tad murkier. Before evaluating the business opportunities for IBM and Intel, we must first understand what makes Bitcoin a self-sufficient enterprise in a fully distributed environment of independent untrusted entities.

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