Blockchain Basics

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  • Course details

    We're on the precipice of a radical and disruptive new way of conducting all manner of transactions over the Internet. While still in its infancy, blockchain technology demands attention. In this introductory-level course, learn what blockchain is and what it might mean to you. Jonathan Reichental—named one of the world's top 100 CIOs in 2017—dives into blockchain technology from a conceptual perspective. The course is primarily non-technical by design, intended for those working in business leadership positions, data science, and IT management.

    Jonathan begins by describing some of the current challenges with the Internet, including existing risks and security problems such as identity management. Next, he describes how traditional online databases function, so that you have a basis for how the blockchain redesigns this function. He then describes how the blockchain becomes a potential solution for many of the existing limitations of online databases. Since the blockchain has its genesis in Bitcoin—the digital currency—he provides some background on that too. He also discusses how blockchain technology actually offers new capabilities beyond simply solving old problems. To wrap up the course, Jonathan shares steps you can take in your organization to understand the implications of the blockchain.


    • Click here to view Jonathan Reichental’s instructor page

      Jonathan Reichental

      Educator | CEO | Writer | Adviser | Speaker | Investor | Author of Smart Cities for Dummies for Wiley

      Dr. Jonathan Reichental is an award-winning technology leader.

      In 2013, he was recognized as one of the 25 doers, dreamers, and drivers in government in America. His innovative work in government has also been recognized by the White House. Dr. Reichental works with his teams to apply technology innovation in organizations to create new value and to enable work to be more meaningful and fun. He is a popular writer, recently coauthoring The Apps Challenge Playbook, and he is a frequent public speaker on a wide range of technology and business-related topics. He teaches classes at University of California, Berkeley, and at the University of San Francisco.

    Skills covered in this course

  • Welcome and introduction

    - In January 2009 we witnessed the birth of the first viable digital currency. Called bitcoin, this new form of money was born on the Internet. What an incredible and provocative idea, a currency without the need for traditional banks and not beholden to any central authority. In fact, bitcoin is absent of any governance and oversight, seamlessly traversing the Internet with little delay and only managed through the consensus of all users of the currency. Now, powering the seemingly magical new form of money, the mechanism that makes it work is also an innovative new idea. It's a novel way to store, validate, authorize and move digital transactions across the Internet. It's called a blockchain and it has the potential to be a highly disruptive technology, not just in the world of digital currency but in a vast number of organizational contexts. The potential of the blockchain is so significant that anyone who wants to understand the future of the Internet needs to understand it, what…

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