IBM has made huge progress with blockchain technology on the technical level, as well as collaborative business level by partnering with companies that can utilize advancements they’ve made with the technology. Last month IBM was granted six different patents related to blockchain technology:
System, method, and computer program product for privacy-preserving transaction validation mechanisms for smart contracts that are included in a ledger
Private blockchain transaction management and termination
Limiting blockchain size to optimize performance
Tracking assets with a blockchain
Blockchain for program code credit and programmer contribution in a collective
Tracking items used for providing medical services
But their most recent patent application could provide an easier way to understand and bring together many of the existing blockchain networks already in existence. “Node characterization in a blockchain” proposes a method to gain entity extraction, text mining, information analysis and discovery, compliance, semantic extraction, and ontology-based entity discovery from the nodes receiving a given transaction on a blockchain.
Interoperability and Identity Sourcing
The great opportunity of this patent comes from the new information log created from the node characterization. Rather than assessing a blockchain as the raw data and identifiers - strings of letters and numbers, this process can give more understandable categories to the nodes operating on a network, and help determine the source of transactions and identity of node operators.
In any emerging area, you really want to let a thousand flowers bloom to encourage the best ideas and innovation, but at a certain point standards and interoperability helps foster even greater collaboration as we build on other’s successes. We’re really focusing now on drive connections and interoperability across disparate blockchain technologies. - Marie Wieck, General Manager for IBM Blockchain
Shipping and Medical
IBM and Maersk now have 94 companies on board for TradeLens, the global shipping industry blockchain solution, as part of IBM's early adopter program. IBM admits they need to improve are the specific types of documents stored on the blockchain and the "onboarding" process for new partners. Improving interoperability, or creating tech layers than can bridge the gap between the databases of two companies will facilitate adoption of these cost saving platforms.
Medical records are another area that can greatly benefit from how blockchains can encrypt, compress and transmit data. MedChain is building globally compliant healthcare blockchain and decentralized applications for electronic medical records. The company just announced a partnership with Cognition Foundry where both companies will utilize IBM’s LinuxONE, the enterprise Linux server built on mainframe technology.
By: BGN Editorial Staff