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The decentralized nature of blockchain allows for transparent and immutable record keeping of transactional digital information. Blockchain makes it possible by storing information in blocks that are paired with hash functions such that the current block has the hash function of previous entry while the next block contains the hash code of current block, so that any tampering of data is not possible as the information cannot be stored in the blockchain if hash functions of the consecutive blocks do not match.
There are basically three types of blockchains with different security features. These are:
Public blockchain - It works on a consensus mechanism and uses Proof of Work or Proof of Stake concept.
Private blockchain - This blockchain has pre-approved participants and operates on voting consensus basis.
Federated or Consortium blockchain - The blockchain has known identities with approved participants and multi-party consensus.
Additionally, based on their permission access control, blockchains can be classified as:
Permissionless blockchain - The whole network is publicly accessible on all computers and devices. Anyone can access the code and start running a public node on local devices. Examples: Bitcoin, Ethereum.
Permissioned blockchain – Only the authorized participants can access a segment of the blockchain based on their permission level. These are usually established on a set of rules that cater to transactional needs of an organization. Example: Multichain.
Improving the performance of apps
Blockchain-as-a-Service (BaaS) allows developers to link up their apps to a cloud-enabled backend space to connect to third-party cloud services and managing users. Blockchain in unison with IoT can help in improving the performance of apps by reducing risks and project development costs.
Steps to blockchain application development
Following steps are invariably involved in a typical blockchain application development:
1. Goal identification
The development team needs to identify the problem and how blockchain can be used to solve it. A cost-benefit analysis will help them know if your business indeed needs a blockchain solution for your problem.
2. Consensus mechanism
Different consensus mechanisms are available for blockchain development, such as Proof of Stake, Proof of Elapsed Time and Delegated Proof of Stake. One needs to identify which consensus mechanism will be best suited to authenticate a transaction in blockchain.
While there are currently more than 25 platforms for blockchain development, the top ones used by most of the blockchain development companies include:
Ethereum - This open source public platform takes into consideration dApp development and smart contract functionality.
Hyperledger - This open source platform is used to create advance blockchain solutions based on IoT.
IOTA - This distributed ledger technology (DLT) based solution helps in providing secure and faster payment services between the connected IoT devices.
Multichain - The platform is used by the mobile app developers to create blockchain solutions for use between multiple organizations.
EOS - The platform offers decentralized application hosting and storage of the enterprise solutions with smart contract capability.
For choosing a platform, the developers need to consider the consensus method and the problem they intend to solve. And if one is looking for an enterprise-grade solution, security and stability of the platform become significant.
4. Blockchain ideation
At this stage, one needs to evaluate, and formulate use cases for blockchain experimentation and decide on the components that need to be added as on-chain and off-chain business identities. Blcokchain ideation will help in designing a conceptual workflow model for the application.
Blockchain architecture needs to complement the high level requirements of the applications that can reside in-house, on the cloud or in a hybrid model. One can choose among the below architectures:
- Public, and
6. Application configuration
This requires careful planning as some aspects like asset issuance and reissuance mechanism, and hand-shaking are hard to change once configured.
7. Building the APIs
APIs need to be created for distinct use cases such as performing data authentication, generating key pairs and addresses, and triggering of smart contacts related to exchange and payments.
8. Admin and user interface
One needs to make decision regarding the front-end programming language and servers to manage soft launch of the application.
Before actual launch of the blockchain application, one needs to identify any performance issues and other glitches as well. The application should be scalable and designed in a way that upgrading its components to accommodate future business growth needs does not affect the existing application.
Languages most suited for blockchain application development
There are many choices before a blockchain application development company when it comes to choosing the languages for blockchain development. Developers can begin with traditional languages like Python or C++, or turn to blockchain-specific languages such as Simplicity and Solidity that have advance features for blockchain development.
Solidity - The language allows for easy running of self-regulated business logic and is often used for building smart contracts that run on EVM.
Simplicity - The language is advancement on the basic cryptocurrency languages such as Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM) or Bitcoin Script, and makes use of static analysis.
Blockchain adoption across industries
Blockchain is getting wide adoption across a spectrum of industries including food, logistics, supply chain, finance, healthcare, real estate, transport, gaming and art. For mobile app developers, it’s now easier with blockchain to integrate chatbots on their website and apps.
Implementing blockchain into your business process
Blockchain can be implemented into the existing business processes in a variety of ways including the below ones:
Transactions - With the absence of middleman in transactions, blockchain technology is all set to revamp transactions.
Distributed cloud storage - Blockchain can be used by the businesses to offer faster, convenient and secure cloud storage.
Notary - The technology can be used for notary creation and authentication purposes.
Digital identification - Blockchain can be used to provide immutable and indisputable digital identifiers and seamless sign-in experiences for the network participants.
Flexsin Technologies is a leading blockchain consulting that can be approached for the development of enterprise blockchain applications and blockchain based business networks. Get in touch for more updates on your blockchain application development projects.
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