WeTrust - Weaving Blockchain Pieces Together
In the not so distant future… you want to start a decentralized Internet company, BUT there are a lot of pieces that need to be in place for you to get the ball rolling. You’re going to need a lot of data storage, computing power, and identity verification. If your start-up is heavily machine learning driven (as many tech companies of the future will be), you’re also going to need a way to gather useful information from the Internet. And, since you’re creating a small, scrappy start-up, ideally you’d like to access insights from that information without having to pay the companies an arm and a leg. Finally, once all of this has been put into place, you’ll need a way to test your prototype to make sure the world can use it without any bugs getting in the way. That’s a lot of things to get in order.
Luckily, you’re living in that future. Blockchain technology has simplified each of these difficult tasks into easily reusable pieces that can be weaved together into your new product. In this article, we will dive into various pieces of the Blockchain ecosystem and explore how they all can be woven together to create something that users will love. It is also a source of inspiration where will draw from as we build out the WeTrust Platform. As the ecosystem grows and other players build out robust solutions complementary to one another, it is important not to reinvent the wheel.
Let’s start with storage. You can choose from decentralized storage services like Sia, StorJ, Swarm, or Filecoin with IPFS. All of a sudden, you can access underutilized hard drive capacity all over the world via the blockchain through a unique incentive based model. Likewise, for computing power, the Golem network allows you to access unused processing power all over the world, from individuals with spare cycles on their PCs to organizations with extra compute in their data centers. The Golem network already has been used for applications ranging from computer graphics to protein folding simulations, with the range of use cases limited only by the imaginations of technologists.
For verifying identity, you can leverage the secure blockchain based identities through uPort or Civic. With uPort, your users simply need to register their identity on the Ethereum network before issuing their own credentials, while Civic provides you with a simple and highly secure way to log in new users. In order to garner information for your product, you can use a blockchain oracle services to automatically trigger the Smart Contracts driving your decentralized application. Companies providing services like these include Oraclize, which bills itself as “enabling data rich smart contracts”; and Chainlink, which reliably connects smart contracts to real world data. Depending on your specific application, you may even use a prediction market like Augur to directly leverage public sentiments. All of these decentralized applications are extremely useful building blocks for your amazing idea, but you still need the “glue” that will hold it all together. That’s where the Whisper protocol comes in. It allows one decentralized application on a blockchain network to communicate with another, publishing messages to each other without requiring consensus or gas. It’s useful for sending small amounts of information or for decentralized applications to signal to each other before collaborating on a transaction.
Finally, let’s not forget adding the finishing touches and testing our product to make sure it behaves as expected. Products like WeTrust’s Blockform can help you deploy your own Ethereum node that can be used to set up tests to make sure even those hard to cover corner cases are fully tested before the world sees your awesome creation.
It’s some day in the not so distant future. You want to start a decentralized Internet business, and you have an entire toolkit of blockchain pieces ready to be weaved together to make that vision a reality. It’s just up to you to make it happen.