Blockchain has shifted from being an underground technological phenomenon to a household name. However, there is much more to blockchain development than bitcoin, cryptocurrencies, and ICOs. Lauded by some as “The Internet 3.0,” its use as a decentralized system has the potential to disrupt, innovate, and streamline business operations in numerous organizations, from private firms to government entities. Blockchain tools are being used to increase security and transparency, reduce costs, cut out the middleman, and improve efficiency for companies worldwide.
At its core, blockchain is a decentralized, irreversible, immutable data ledger. Each “block” is secured and connected together using cryptographic principles in a “chain.” No one can tamper with the data, and the information is transparently available to everyone with access to the blockchain. The technology is still young, but it will only become more powerful as time goes on.
Blockchain development in business
Some of the most common uses of blockchain in business environments are smart contracts, the Hyperledger, and public, private, and permissioned blockchains.
Smart contracts are used to transparently verify and enforce the terms of a contract without a third party. All transactions conducted through smart contracts are trackable and immutable. Smart contracts can be integrated into blockchains at all levels.
Hosted by The Linux Foundation, Hyperledger is behind numerous open-source collaborative efforts to facilitate business transactions on a shared ledger database, including Hyperledger Fabric and Hyperledger Sawtooth. According to Hyperledger’s official website, the collaboration hopes “to build a new generation of transactional applications that establishes trust, accountability and transparency at their core, while streamlining business processes and legal constraints.”
Public, private, and permissioned blockchains each employ varying levels of access to address the needs provided by the platform. Public blockchains are open to all, such as Bitcoin. Private blockchains are typically used within a specific company, entity, or organization. Permissioned blockchains are generally created for a specific population, such as employees at various companies within one particular industry.
In an IBM study with over 3,000 executives, 80 percent confirmed that they were planning to implement or had already implemented blockchain development tools in their businesses. A Juniper Research survey found that only nine percent of companies with over 20,000 employees had no intention of using blockchain tools. But, exactly how can blockchain be used to help your business? Here are some of the most popular blockchain development tools in 2019.
Formerly known as Solium, Ethlint is a tool that is used to uncover style and security vulnerabilities in smart contracts. Its redistributable configuration fosters a degree of flexibility to choose the most appropriate measures to apply to your project. In addition, its functionality can be extended into your own plugins and integrated with your continuous integration systems, allowing you to standardize your coding practices and simplify your code review and audit procedures.
Ethlint aims to become the “future of smart contract automation” by streamlining and automating smart contract development, constructing the tools necessary to facilitate data push/pull and off-chain computation, and enable smart contract deployment practices.
SoLC: Solidity Compiler
To interact with the blockchain and deploy your smart contracts, you need an Ethereum client. Ethereum clients offer an interface through which users can parse and verify the blockchain and its smart contracts as well as create transactions and mine blocks.
Parity Ethereum aims to be the fastest, most secure, and most advanced Ethereum client on the market. Written in the Rust programming language, it was founded by the former CTO of Ethereum, Gavin Wood. Parity Ethereum, which is directly integrated into a web browser, has been “built for mission-critical use,” as stated on its official documentation. The platform allows its users, including miners, service providers, and exchanges, to access the blockchain with maximum uptime, fast synchronization, and a minimal memory and storage footprint.
MetaMask is a browser extension that serves as “a bridge that allows you to visit the distributed web of tomorrow in your browser today.” The browser add-on allows users to run Ethereum decentralized applications (DApps) without running a full Ethereum node. As MetaMask hosts several nodes through its platform, registered users are automatically connected to one of their nodes, thus providing a secure identity vault and user interface to interact with the Ethereum blockchain.
Available in 18 languages, MetaMask can be used on Chrome, Firefox, Opera, and Brave to access Web 3.0, DApps, NFTs, erc20, tokens, ICOs, erc271, and more.
DAppBoard is an open-source platform that provides key metrics about Ethereum applications to monitor, understand, and expand your blockchain project. As every protocol, project, and Dapp is different and uses different metrics to measure success, the company strives to offer categories and metrics that matter most to each user. Its “Ecosystem 360 View” feature provides a comprehensive view to give users a deeper insight into the Ethereum blockchain.
The platform provides KPI dashboards, hosted dashboards with time blockchain data, and DApp metric reports for a wide range of blockchain businesses, such as exchanges, wallets, DeFi protocols, asset/security tokenization companies, and asset/fund management firms.
Blockchain is more than bitcoin. Thousands of executives throughout the globe are planning to incorporate the technology into their business operations. To learn more about incorporating innovative technologies and approaches into your business, download our e-book, “Why Adopting a DevOps Model Can be Good for Your Company.”