Why I Am Distressed About IBM Blockchain – Vitalik Buterin
Vitalik Butterin, the Ethereum (ETH) Project co-founder, has submitted that most of the use to which blockchain technology is being put is a waste. According to him, most join the bandwagon to generate marketing hype and it seems that is the case with IBM blockchain.
Speaking recently with Quartz’s Matthew De Silva, while the two were discussing all things blockchain tech at Devcon4, Vitalik said that most companies are merely looking for ways to leverage on the recent hype of blockchain solution.
Devcon is an annually held conference for Ethereum’s developers. This year’s Devcon conference which took place in Prague from October 30 to November 2 saw speakers talking about the speed, scalability and the robustness of the Ethereum project. The team also highlighted the possible ways of helping Ethereum reach the next million users as well as the contribution of designers and developers in improving user’s experience in the cryptospace.
IBM And Maersk Supply Chain Management Network Has Missed The Point
He noted that some of the proposed blockchain implementation efforts are merely a waste of time. Drawing attention to IBM’s blockchain efforts which has enjoyed support even in the midst of the 2018 unfortunate market rut, he said that private blockchains like IBM and Maersk’s supply chain management test network has missed the point.
He further posited that such corporation should be making use of publicly accessible networks as they are entirely missing the point of decentralization. Buttressing his previous stance, Butterin added that the effort of IBM to put lettuce on the blockchain is fundamentally wrong.
Blockchains Are Neutral Tools Not Arbiters Of Truth
Ultilizing the blockchain technology to track food implies that QR codes are stamped on the food at every step along the way and a consumer can scan the QR code to verify and ascertain where the produce came from. As such the consumer can confirm if it fits in with his/her moral standards for quality.
Vitalik agrees that the idea of being able to effectively monitor and verify the source of a product especially food is a good one, yet the concern lies on whether the actors involved are correctly performing the task.
Take for instance, if the person at the very start of the process- the Farmer is not imputing the correct information on the blockchain, you will not have the whole truth needed to make an informed decision.
It’s quite true that blockchain technology makes it harder to contradict inputted information thereby adding to the assurance that users get. It should be noted that blockchains are not arbiters of truth but rather neutral tools and so can definitely not provide 100% guarantee of things particularly in the real world.
To institute a blockchain verified process will help garner higher standards and plenty of companies are trying to establish higher standards.
Vitalik agreed that from a marketing standpoint it makes sense to institute a blockchain verified process as a means of putting in place higher standards of reliability as a differentiator.
But the viability of the model in every industry does not seem feasible to Vitalik.