Blockchain and the Hyperledger Sawtooth Implementation | IoT Developer Show | Intel Software

Blockchain and the Hyperledger Sawtooth Implementation | IoT Developer Show | Intel Software


Hello, I’m Martin Kronberg and
this is the IoT Developer Show. Today we have Daniel Holmlund,
a software developer here at Intel, talking with us about
blockchain and the Hyperledger software implementation. Daniel, thank you so
much for being here. Well, thanks for having me. It’s great to be on the show. So what is Hyperledger
and Sawtooth? Hyperledger is a
collaborative effort that’s run by the
Linux Foundation to bring businesses
together to work on enterprise-level
blockchain solutions. Hyperledger also has
around 100 or so members. Some of them are financial and
some of them are technological. Intel is a member,
IBM, Cisco, but it also includes the Bank of
England, the Bank of China, and the Bank of India. OK, so then what is Sawtooth? Sawtooth is an implementation
of a blockchain that Intel has contributed to
the Hyperledger foundation. OK, so before diving in
let’s get on the same page by giving a brief overview
of blockchain in general. Blockchain is a
type of database, but is fundamentally different
from a traditional database. A traditional database
is centralized in a single location. While in contrast, blockchain
is a distributed database, correct? Right. So with a blockchain, it has
three important components. First of all it is
distributed, so there’s no single point of failure. Nodes can come and go
from the blockchain and the blockchain
remains functional while they’re doing that. It also contains immutable data. Which means that once data is
entered into the blockchain, there is a cryptographic
cache of that data that’s distributed to all the
members of the blockchain. So that if the data changes,
everybody will know. It also enables two-party
peer-to-peer transactions. Which means that two parties
can exchange an asset without the need for
a trusted third party. OK, Well let’s take a look
at a real world example to help us understand these
concepts a little bit better. Like Intel, many companies are
pursuing a conflict-free supply chain to ensure that
their products come from conflict-free areas. Blockchain can help companies
ensure that their manufacturing plants use minerals purchased
from an ethically-certified mining operation and
transported effectively. Let’s take a look at
the blockchain process that will help ensure that. When the minerals are
purchased, the parties create a block in the chain
with the transfer information. Each time that the
minerals change hands, the two exchanging
parties add another block. When the manufacturing plant
finally receives the shipment, it can look at that
blockchain and verify the path that the minerals took. If someone were to try and
alter one of the blocks, the cryptographic signature
would alert all the parties to that change. Exactly. Data that’s entered into
the blockchain is immutable. And it also provides a chain
of attestation going back to the beginning–
or the genesis block. So if goods are
delivered to you, you can trace them back
through their supply chain with cryptographic fidelity. This is one of the reasons why
blockchain is a potentially disruptive technology. Because if you can make
two-party transactions easy, that means that
that security can be applied to every part
of the supply chain. So instead of spending
hours in a bank, parties can come together,
and within minutes, form a secure contract. I can imagine that having that
trusted peer-to-peer data layer can enable developers to really
create some new and really interesting applications. The data layer
with blockchain is separate from the
application layer. So you can be a
system administrator and administrate the data layer. But there are also
application developers that could build smart
contracts, or different ways of trading, on top
of that blockchain. Very interesting. So I saw quite a few
blockchain implementations as part of the
Hyperledger group. Now what does Intel Sawtooth
add to the ecosystem? Sawtooth has a number
of interesting features that are implemented. First of all, it provides
on blockchain voting. So if the participants
within a blockchain want to change the
settings of the blockchain, they can vote and change
the settings dynamically. It also provides a
transaction processor that uses advanced
techniques to determine if there are any dependencies
between transactions. If there are dependencies
between them, it will serialize them. If there aren’t, it
executes them in parallel. So it’s faster than many
other blockchain solutions that are out there right now. Sawtooth also provides
advanced language bindings. So developers of smart
contract applications can develop in their favorite
languages, such as Go, or Ruby, or Python. Very nice. Does Intel offer any kind
of security advantages as well with Sawtooth? That was actually one
of the prime reasons that Sawtooth was donated to
the Hyperledger foundation. Sawtooth takes
complete advantage of Intel’s trusted
execution environments. This allows it to have
more efficient algorithms in some senses. For instance, the
Bitcoin blockchain uses a concept
called Proof of Work in order to create a
consensus among the nodes. The default algorithm
with Sawtooth is called Proof of Time. The reason why we’re able
to use this algorithm, which is a more
efficient algorithm, is because it runs within the
trust of execution environments available on Intel processors. OK, so basically the host is
able to use a trusted execution environment and then
the entire blockchain can use a more
efficient algorithm. And that allows for a safer
and quicker transaction time. Again, it allows for
application developers to build new, interesting
business models on top of it. So where can people
go to learn more about Hyperledger Sawtooth? Well, you can visit the
Hyperledger project page, see all the member
organizations that are there. They have an extensive
amount of documentation, both for people that are trying
to deploy a blockchain as well as application developers. You can also see their
forum and resources. They have a number of videos,
webinars, white papers, etc. OK, well, Daniel, thank you
so much for coming and telling us all about
Hyperledger Sawtooth and how developers can
leverage it to create cool, new applications. And thank you guys
for joining me today. Don’t forget to like our
YouTube and Facebook pages and see you guys next month.

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