Focus | Blockchain brought together a panel moderated by Craig Wilson (far left) featuring (left to right) Nicholas Chirls, Marie Leaf, Shawn Cheng, and Adam Carver

Beyond the hype: What’s next for blockchain?

Has enthusiasm for blockchain truly waned or is the technology just getting started? After turbulence in the crypto markets, the public blockchain has taken a beating. But the experts at our Focus | Blockchain event aren’t counting out anything

Future Labs
Mar 7 · 4 min read

The single source of truth

Kicking off the evening, Ricardo Olivieri, Blockchain Solutions Architect at the IBM Blockchain Cloud Garage, keynoted with ‘An Introduction to Blockchain for Business’. The Blockchain 101 presentation offered the audience of VCs, tech recruiters, software engineers, developers, fintech startups, and students an opportunity to immerse in blockchain basics.

Ricardo Olivieri, from IBM Blockchain Cloud Garage, delivers the keynote

Blockchain, the industry disruptor

Not surprisingly, Olivieri said that for most enterprises, private blockchains are a good fit — provided they meet 4 requirements: identity transparency; agreement on what is shared and stored in the ledger; privacy; and transaction endorsement.

The trilemma of blockchain

One of the biggest challenges facing blockchain technology is its ‘trilemma’: the choice between scalability, decentralization, and security. The confluence of technical barriers hinders the trust necessary for mass adoption or business applications. Shawn Cheng, Partner at ConsenSys Labs — which invests in decentralized technologies — sees the emergence of a hybrid class of investors, those who can invest like hedge funds, buying and selling at will. “There’s a growing interest for financial and tech-focused use cases for blockchain. Cryptocurrency and blockchain can offer a better way throughout the life cycle of a company.”

Proof of stake and proof of work: Pros, cons, conflicts

A moderator question addressed the issue of proof of stake versus proof of work within the blockchain developer community. Proof of stake refers to owning coins and posting them as collateral, while proof of work is a compute requirement that must be performed in order to add to the ledger. Marie said Kadena uses a proof of work influenced model, and is optimizing for it. Her criticism of proof of stake is that it is not subject to money transmitter license laws, and it hasn’t been put through enough rigorous testing to be considered completely secure.

Future Labs

Discussing the present and future of AI, AR, VR, Blockchain and other technology impacting startups and society.

Future Labs

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The Future Labs at NYU Tandon offer the businesses of tomorrow a network of innovation spaces and programs that support early stage startups in New York City.

Future Labs

Discussing the present and future of AI, AR, VR, Blockchain and other technology impacting startups and society.