Blockchain: the most overrated technology ever invented?

Or is it a crucial component in the future of data storage?  You decide…

Blockchain has been dismissed by some leading academics and tech experts as overrated, overhyped and not very useful.

So, what is the point of it?

Basically, it's a safety mechanism to protect online data.

Two words you will hear during blockchain explanations are “distributed ledger”.

It means that information like a password, bank account balance or digital wallet full of virtual coins is  no longer kept in one place.

“Information is stored simultaneously on many computers that back each other up, reducing the possibility that information can be meddled with.”


The blockchain

Each point along the chain, each computer, holds and verifies the information independently.

That system is the blockchain.

The information is recorded on a ledger that is distributed all over the place with different people and on different computers.

So this makes it very hard to falsify or tamper with the information because then it wouldn't match the other ledgers.



This security aspect made blockchain suitable for supporting cryptocurrencies.

So you will often hear bitcoin – the most prevalent cryptocurrency – and blockchain in the same breath.

But what do the critics say?

Nouriel Roubini, a Harvard, Yale and IMF-credentialed academic, dismisses blockchain.

He called it “the most overhyped – and least useful – technology in human history”.



Blockchain is “overrated”

Vivienne Ming, an acclaimed AI expert, says: “Blockchain is far and away the most overrated (technology).

“I’ve never seen a technology so desperately in need of a problem to solve.”

Former Amazon executive Diego Piacentini was quoted saying that he got “goose bumps” when he heard the word blockchain in the mouths of politicians.

He told the Financial Times: “Applications of blockchains into government activities are still faaaaar from being ready to scale, and it’s a very abstract concept.”

So, watch this space.


For the full article by Robin Black in the Mayfair Times, read here.