In This Issue

Business & Corporate

The Blockchain and the New Architecture of Trust

One would have to be living under a rock the past few years to miss the hype about blockchain, and the related phenomenon of cryptocurrencies. Blockchain describes a family of decentralized ledger technologies that promise to track and transfer anything of value—money, stocks, insurance claims, goods flowing through global supply chains, datasets for artificial intelligence applications, and more—without reliance on trusted central authorities. Yet other than a bubble and crash in financial speculation around Bitcoin and other tokens, it’s hard to see the real-world implications of these technologies. Now the crypto-promoters convinced that blockchain is the answer to virtually any question are joined by cyber-skeptics arguing it is pointless at best, fraudulent at worst.