back to article The gospel according to Blockchain, or is it the other way round?

Startup Gospel Technology is evangelising the use of Blockchain to secure and verify sharable data. Blockchain technology provides a way of doing this, claims Gospel, which says it's found a simpler way than any alternative methods. The early stage firm was founded in December last year by CEO Ian Smith, who was co-founder, …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Predicted in 2016 ..

    However, given my investigations, this is NOT what the governments of the world - (well, the UK) want.

    Gospel will struggle to sell in the UK :(

  2. Tim 11

    As they say in wikipedia...

    This article contains content that is written like an advertisement

  3. Sgt_Oddball Silver badge
    Paris Hilton

    Does this mean though...

    That if blockchains are compute and network intensive that as more data is added it becomes uneconomical to continue to hold onto the data? Especially if the data is rapidly changing as well as increasing in size (I thought that was one of the limitations of bitcoin that it was of a finite size for the initial data that the blockchain revolves around?) Surely then if it's in a constant state of flux and increasing in size the overheads would become exponential?

    I might however be totally wrong in any of those assumptions so I'm happy to be corrected.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Does this mean though...

      Don't worry, it all just works like magic. Please send in your investment cheque (bitcoin not accepted) now!

    2. DavCrav

      Re: Does this mean though...

      "That if blockchains are compute and network intensive that as more data is added it becomes uneconomical to continue to hold onto the data? Especially if the data is rapidly changing as well as increasing in size (I thought that was one of the limitations of bitcoin that it was of a finite size for the initial data that the blockchain revolves around?) Surely then if it's in a constant state of flux and increasing in size the overheads would become exponential?"

      Pretty much, yes. The computing time required to record the transactions becomes more and more onerous. At the moment the people recording this information are rewarded with Bitcoins. Let's see what happens if that is no longer the case.

      1. @hansdeleenheer

        Re: Does this mean though...

        This is indeed one of the reasons a (shared?) permissioned distributed ledger may be a better solution going forward than an anonymous unpermissioned one. By choosing for HyperLedger we have the ability to not having to use cryptocurrency. It is our intent to make the Gospel platform as wide as possible from integration perspectives; on premises over multiple data centers, may or may not be in control of one company or a group of companies. Could run over multiple types of public cloud, ... We feel we should not be the ones dictating your (= Entprise company) infrastructure choices.

    3. RichardHill

      Re: Does this mean though...

      Regarding

      >> That if blockchains are compute and network intensive that as more data is added it becomes uneconomical

      The hyperledger fabric is pluggable so a consensus algorithm can be chosen to be neither compute or network intensive. Finding a suitable correct algo and verifying its correctness is an interesting task and that is where much of the secret sauce which give this business value could be.

      In my opinion this is a good use case for blockchain. I wish them good luck.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Can someone explain

    How this is in principle any different from giving people a database of encrypted rows, and providing a way for them to get the key to unlock certain rows? This is probably a little simpler, and you can post the blockchain publicly, but they appear to be making claims about its security that they can't deliver on.

    Sure, it sounds like this could prevent someone who gets hold of the blockchain from reading the data within, just like if they got hold of the encrypted DB. But once you've accessed the data and have it in plain text, if for instance it is a list of email addresses, you can do anything you like with them. There is nothing that can be done to the blockchain to revoke the access of someone who has abused their access, once they extract the plaintext it is no different in principle than mailing them a CD. If they can know you accessed those email addresses that's great (they'd only assume it with the CD) but that doesn't change anything.

    Once again, blockchain is a solution looking for a problem. Though at least this time they're trying, it is better than the previous crap uses I've seen.

    1. DavCrav

      Re: Can someone explain

      "How this is in principle any different from giving people a database of encrypted rows, and providing a way for them to get the key to unlock certain rows? This is probably a little simpler, and you can post the blockchain publicly, but they appear to be making claims about its security that they can't deliver on."

      I agree. It sounds like rubbish to me. I don't see how you can, after giving someone the e-mail address of a third party, stop them using it any way they want with 'the cloud', 'blockchain', or any other word off the Bullshit Bingo card.

    2. @hansdeleenheer

      Re: Can someone explain

      disclaimer; I do represent Gospel.

      There are multiple ways to peel an orange as there will be multiple ways of securing data. We feel Distributed Ledger Technologies can help here for securely sharing corporate information. As these technologies (and it's implementations) are fairly new, we do understand that there is going to be a need for educating the market on its merits. Please do stick around and give it the benefit of the doubt for now ;-)

      1. DavCrav

        Re: Can someone explain

        Disclaimer: I do represent logic and reasoning. (I'm a mathematician.)

        "There are multiple ways to peel an orange as there will be multiple ways of securing data."

        Q: Does the person get the e-mail address in plain text?

        If so, it cannot be secured. If not, you won't be able to send e-mail to the person.

        "we do understand that there is going to be a need for educating the market on its merits."

        It's not the merits I have an issue with. It's the possibility of its existence. If you want to secure the data, the person you are securing it from, which appears to be the user in this case, can never get it in unencrypted form.

        1. @hansdeleenheer

          Re: Can someone explain

          I agree with you and share your concerns. We will go into details about the specifics of the technology at a certain stage and we do prefer rather sooner than later. That begin said we're not even public with our v1.0 yet. In general, DLT is an early stage technology and there's going to be lots of roadmap we'd like to get in there on day one that just won't be possible. I'll be the first to welcome you to show us the flaws of our designs!

          If you are genuinely interested, you can always find me at hans.deleenheer@gospel.tech

        2. RichardHill

          Re: Can someone explain

          Regarding

          >> If you want to secure the data

          Your point is a good one, I question what they mean by "secure" if they mean secure against undetected tampering then the claim stands . If they mean secure against access, well thats more difficult and there are already many ways of doing this in use already and the world economy relies on them. We all know these methods fail when put in contact with humans and I expect that to continue whatever technology is used.

  5. MotionCompensation

    Analysis? Analyze this

    My analysis: information is like a fart. Once it's out there, there is no way to get it back. Putting it in a blockchain doesn't change that.

  6. DJ Smiley

    I sense a mistake. It says you can't read the data from the prior block..... this isn't true as far as I know.

    It simply means you can _Verify_ the data in any block, from the blocks prior, that is far far different to reading them.

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