Changing the World: 5 Real Life Blockchain Use Cases

Rajarshi Mitra

1 week ago
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Several interesting use cases could be explored by integrating the blockchain technology. In this guide, we will first understand why the blockchain has such industry-disrupting capabilities. Following that, we will be looking into different blockchain use cases.

Blockchain and Innovation

Innovations can be of two kinds – vertical and horizontal.

Vertical innovation is innovation that is explicitly done in a particular field, while horizontal innovation is something that can be adopted by everyone. Let’s take an example to make this clearer.

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Penicillin, Polio vaccine, and sophisticated operating methods are all examples of vertical innovations since they are specific only to a particular field.

Electricity, Internet, and Cloud Computing, on the other hand, are horizontal innovations that have been adopted by multiple fields and industries to make their functionality more efficient.

The fact that most hospitals still use papers and files to do their records goes to show that they lag far behind when it comes to horizontal innovation.

So, to summarize:

blockchain Applications

Blockchain: The Next Horizontal Innovation

We have talked about Blockchain basics a lot of times on this site before. So, to give you a concise description, a blockchain is in the simplest of terms, a time-stamped series of an immutable record of data that is managed by a cluster of computers not owned by any single entity. Each of these blocks of data (i.e., block) are secured and bound to each other using cryptographic principles (i.e., chain).

The reason why the blockchain has gained so much admiration is that:

  • A single entity does not own it, hence it is decentralized.
  • The data is cryptographically stored inside.
  • The blockchain is immutable, so no one can tamper with the data that is inside the blockchain .
  • The blockchain is transparent so one can track the data if they want to.

Blockchain Use Cases

The use-cases we will be looking into will be distributed among the following categories:

  • Charity.
  • Finance
  • Logistics
  • Government
  • Entertainment

#1 Blockchain Use Case: Charity

The projects we will be looking into are

  • Giveth
  • GiveTrack

Giveth

Built on – Ethereum

Giveth wants to improve the non-profit space by bringing in new governance models. They have created the “Giveth Galaxy” aka the scope of projects they are working on. They believe that by expanding the Giveth Galaxy, they will be able to disrupt the “Future of Giving.” The community behind Giveth is called “Giveth DAC.”

There are two main goals of Giveth:

  • Create a completely free, open-source platform for DACs in multiple iterations and decentralize the platform.
  • Develop the platform for a wider audience and build communities around different. In the process, allow these communities to get the necessary funding as well.

What Giveth does

  • Create an entirely free, open-source platform on top of the Ethereum Blockchain. 
  • Cut through bureaucracy and allow makers to create a high level of transparency and accountability.
  • Allow for the creation of governance experiments and make them accessible to the outside world through blockchain technology. 
  • The Giveth DAC diligently documents everything that could be useful for future communities similar to themselves.

GiveTrack

blockchain Applications

Built on – RSK

 GiveTrack aims to revolutionize charity by allowing one to track donations in real-time. The platform will provide transparency and accountability to donors by sharing financial information and direct project results in real-time.  

The issue to be resolved

Charities that are working in third-world countries are often suffering from a variety of issues:

  • They can lose up to 30% of their funds in transaction and service fees.
  • The transactions take a long time to go through and they are vulnerable to fraud.
  • They don’t have the tools needed to maintain internal or external transparency.

Why this is important

So, what are the advantages that NGOs and donors can gain from using GiveTrack?

  • Improve the overall cost, speed, and security of moving NGO funds cross-border.
  • Adds accountability via transparency and help build trust and engagement with donors and the public.
  • Enable real-time adaptive management and faster, more productive emergency response. 

Deploying this technology at scale and leveraging all of its benefits can help in making charitable donations more efficient. Here is one interesting post explaining how blockchain technology can be used for social impact. 

#2 Blockchain Use Case: Finance

The projects that we will be looking into in this category are:

  • IBM World Wire
  • SeSocio.

IBM World Wire

blockchain Applications

Built on – Stellar

Stellar has teamed up with IBM to create the World Wire. The World Wire network will directly connect banks from across the globe without any intermediaries to engage in near-instant transactions. According to IBM, the World Wire platform has already secured 72 payment locations across the world, leveraging 48 currencies and 44 banking endpoints (including banks and ATMs).

The current issues of international transactions

  • International transactions usually happen via SWIFT. SWIFT is a method by which money gets transferred from Bank A to Bank B through a series of intermediary banks. Each of these banks charges a fee of their own, which bloats up the overall transaction fees.
  • Since the money goes through so many intermediaries, it also spikes up the overall transaction time. International transactions can take as much as five business days to go through.
  • There is a severe lack of transparency, making it near impossible to track down the transactions.

The advantages of IBM World Wire

  • Since there will be no intermediaries, the transactions will be significantly faster and incur minimal fees. Cross-border payments will be settled between institutions in mere seconds.
  • The two institutions will agree to use a stablecoin, a central bank digital currency, or any other digital asset as the bridge asset between their respective fiat currencies.
  • The digital asset is instantly converted to the target fiat currency to complete the transaction.
  • Since the system is based on a blockchain, the transactions conducted will have complete transparency. This will help in tracking and auditing.
  • The system is secure and supports transactions of any size.

SeSocio

blockchain Applications

Built on – RSK

SeSocio is the leading Latin American investment marketplace that allows small and medium investors to access investment opportunities that were previously unavailable to them. Investments that were considered impossible before – like buying a one dollar-worth of a Manhattan apartment or 1/8th of a truck to generate monthly passive income can now be possible with SeSocio.

The problem to be resolved

High-value assets have long been the investment choice of the wealthy. The barriers for entry have been so high that the common man can’t get his slice of the pie.  

Why this is important

  • SeSocio democratizes the field of investments and allows everybody to take part. 
  • Projects seeking investments will benefit significantly from having so many different sources to invest in them rather than just depending on traditional financial institutions.

Here is an interesting analysis about blockchain for financial inclusion

#3 Blockchain Use Case: Logistics

The blockchain technology has been truly disruptive for the logistics industry. There are two projects which we want to focus on here:

  • IBM-Walmart food chain.
  • Carnes Validadas.

IBM-Walmart food trust

Built on – Hyperledger Fabric

The current food-traceability system is a complete logistical nightmare.

  • There is a severe lack of transparency in the system, which makes it impossible to track the food.
  •  Each node in the supply chain is a centralized entity that can be easily hacked by anyone.
  • It is impossible to know if the individual cogs in the system are acting in the best interest of the whole system or not.

Walmart and IBM

Walmart is presently using Food Trust, IBM’s blockchain built on the Hyperledger Fabric. Walmart has already done two test runs – one with Chinese pork and the other with Mexican mangoes. Frank Yiannas, vice president of food safety at Walmart had this to say about the results of the trials (As told to Fortune):

“We were so encouraged that we really quickly started reaching out to other suppliers and retailers as well.”

What are the advantages of a transparent food system?

  • Since the whole system will be transparent, none of the suppliers will risk sending sub-par food.
  • Since every single item is accounted for, there is less overall wastage.
  • Procurement officers and individual components of the system can’t get away with underhand dealings and corruption since the system is transparent.
  • The consumers will be fully confident about the quality of food they are eating, since they will be able to trace it to its origins.

Carnes Validadas 

blockchain Applications

Built on – RSK

Carnes Validadas  is a  solution developed by Koibanx on top of RSK that looks to improve the Argentinian meat supply chain. The chain allows different companies to be linked together to allow for the efficient procurement and transportation of meat. They achieve this by using the blockchain technology to impart transparency, clarity, and confidence in the meat production process. 

The problem to be solved

Tracing the meat right back to its very source. The tech is based on the individual identification of animals and Blockchain technology.

Why this is important

  • Improve overall transparency and efficiency of the meat traceability system.
  • Continually improve the meat chain with the integration of improvement tools and market intel.
  • Provide more clarity in food production. 

Traceability for End Users Through Blockchain Technology is something many companies on a whole range of different industries are exploring and using. 

#4 Blockchain Use Case:  Government

Let’s look at the following projects:

  • Follow my Vote
  • OS City.

Follow my Vote

blockchain Applications

Built on – Original

Follow My Vote is using the blockchain technology and Elliptical Curve Cryptography (ECC) to bring voting into the 21st century. Their goal is simple, make the election process as transparent as possible.

Problems with the Current System

The current paper balloting system has a host of issues:

  • The system is hugely labor-intensive.
  • The time taken to count the votes is too high.
  • Manual errors in counting the vote cannot be avoided and the system to verify the counting of the votes is not systematic or transparent.
  • The election can be hijacked via the insertion of bogus ballot papers.
  • There have been many instances of elections getting rigged. Powerful parties can use their influence to tamper the results.
  • The cost of expenditure on paper ballots is very high.
  • It is impossible to keep track of your vote

What does Follow my Vote do?

  • Allows voters to register themselves by creating two ECC key-pairs.
  • The voter reveals their identity to a verifier who certifies the first key pair.
  • The voter then registers their second key pair anonymously as belonging to the first pair.
  • The first key-pair is called “identity key-pair,” while the second is called “voting key-pair.”
  • The voter can vote by creating a transaction and sign them off with their private key.
  • The vote is recorded on the blockchain.

OS City

blockchain Applications

Built on – RSK

The current structure of the government is extremely fragmented and consists of individual silos. OS City will allow from the creation of a more sustainable and urban future through the creation and curation of software technology.

The problem to be solved

  • Government technology or “GovTech” has generally been lagging.
  • Improve the overall government efficiency and trust to increase the productivity of government workers and plug revenue leakage.
  • Use Cloud Computing, Artificial Intelligence, and Blockchain to solve issues previously not possible.
  • Provide better work experience for both workers and constituents to improve constituent satisfaction and government revenue.

Why use OS City?

  • OS City has partnered up with RSK since it combines the benefits of the most secure network with the virtues of a strong organization. 
  • Their software will allow for the reduction of costs, avoid vendor lock-in, and building scalable and sustainable IT environments.

#5 Blockchain Use Case: Entertainment

The two projects we will be looking into in this space are:

  • Cryptokitties.
  • Watafan.

Cryptokitties

blockchain Applications

Built on – Ethereum

Gaming is one of the most active sectors in the crypto space. Cryptokitties is a fun little collectible game, which once became so popular that it clogged up the Ethereum blockchain. Cryptokitties is a blockchain-based virtual game that allows players to adopt, raise, and trade virtual cats. The game was made by Vancouver-based blockchain company Axiom Zen. 

The virtual cats are non-fungible ERC-721 tokens. Users can nurture their cats and trade them with others.

Want to know more about cryptokitties? Then read our guide

Watafan

blockchain Applications

Built on – RSK

Watafan will allow celebrities to create their own digital trading cards, aka watacards. 

  • Celebrities can give away the watacards to their fans as a gift or autograph. 
  • They can use their personal wallet to sign these cards cryptographically. 
  • Smart contracts protect the intellectual property of the idols.
  • Every time fans trade watacards in the secondary market among each other. The concerned celebrity will receive a chunk of the shares.

The problem to be solved

Celebrities often lose out on revenues because of copyright infringements. The cryptographically secure watacards will allow them to profit from their likeness.

Why this is important

It allows for the creation of an open, global market where users can verify the authenticity of the cards and trade them in a fast and transparent way. 

Blockchain Use Case: Conclusion

The reason why RSK has garnered so much interest is that it brings smart contract functionalities into Bitcoin through a sidechain. Developers and companies around the world have started leveraging the RSK sidechain to bring several fascinating blockchain use cases.

 

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Troy Hulm

I think Givetrack is something that will be very popular as donators question how much of their money is going directly to the causes they’re trying to assist. Whether that is a warranted worry or not depends on the charity. It reminds me a bit of Kiva.org where you’re directly loaning money to the individual cases that you choose. This is on a much smaller scale but it is related to donations and nonprofits/charities. It’s a bit of a different approach but I wanted people to be able to contribute to nonprofits passively while they trade so I built https://www.thegoodpart.world/… Read more »

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Troy Hulm

While researching further I also came across givedirectly.org – Seems to be an almost identical org as givetrack. I would like to use one of these orgs in the future, will have to do further research to see if either have a feature that makes one stand out against the other.

K
Geek
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Kevin Tapp

Thank you for the new articles.I like the flexibility of the investing opportunities as well as the lowered barriers to investments.

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