What is Distributed Consensus?

In my previous post I made the claim that blockchain technology by itself was not particularly revolutionary, since it’s basically a database with some special rules.

What makes a blockchain special is how it can be used to maintain a trusted public record of transactions without the need for a trusted central authority to verify those transactions.

The way this untrusted-but-valid agreement system is handled is called “distributed consensus”, which is what really makes blockchain technology interesting.

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What is the Blockchain?

Blockchain! Blockchain! Blockchain! It’s all over the news right now, mainly because of the rapid rise in price of Bitcoin. The sudden spike in public awareness has a lot of people looking for a non-techie explanation of what a blockchain is.

So, I’m going to try and explain what a blockchain is without resorting to crypto-jargon. Ready? Let’s go!

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