New “coins” or tokens and their platforms are all the rage. Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, Litecoin, Zcash, Dash, Ripple, Monero, the list goes on and on and new ones keep popping up. The new coins are either entirely their own platform or they are derivations, i.e. spin-offs of one of the existing virtual currency platforms.
Technology is permeating all aspects of society. Legal constructs are the latest to be infiltrated. We will discuss some of them in upcoming posts, including blockchain, smart contracts and related concepts. First we need the building blocks to understand how the blockchain works.
Bblockchain is a form of a decentralized ledger technology. It is decentralized, or distributed, because it operates on a peer to peer basis. There is no centralized database of the chain or any blocks. Instead, for each blockchain there are various computers or servers which operate as “nodes” for the applicable chain. Each node contains the entire chain, and nodes review any proposed block and it must be verified prior to it being added to the chain. Nodes can be anonymous.