Recent Blockchain Innovations: Q3 2020
As 2020 has gone on and the world has shifted its response to COVID-19, we’ve seen a number of blockchain innovations designed to help curb the pandemic, as well as those aimed at adjusting our way of life to better meet the changing times.
Here are a few of the more recent blockchain applications serving to advance us further into the digital age.
Blockchain-based contact tracing
On August 24, Japan’s Finance Minister Taro Aso mentioned in his opening remarks at the Blockchain Global Governance Conference the role blockchain could play in helping curb the global pandemic – specifically in the area of private contact tracing.
Aso highlighted blockchain’s ability to provide privacy for those that test positive through contact tracing, in addition to facilitating better future containment. He did, however, also acknowledge that certain tensions between the Japanese government and the blockchain community would need to be resolved for the two to effectively cooperate.
Aso is not the first to mention blockchain’s potential in fighting COVID-19, as others have also noted the role it can play in the supply chain tracing of masks and other medical materials, as well as its ability to distribute relief funds.
Secure mail-in voting system
The act and security of voting have been under an increasingly close microscope, and blockchain may have an answer.
Last year, the USPS applied for a patent for a blockchain-based secure voting system. While such a platform would not be ready for launch by this year’s election, it does provide a timely glimpse into a potential solution for one of today’s most pressing issues.
The system would use blockchain to mail citizens a computer-readable code that would then validate their identity and ballot information – all while keeping this information secure and anonymous. This could serve as a solution to any suspected mail-in voter fraud issues and could also prevent people from having to wait in line at local polling places – or from failing to have their mail-in votes received and counted at all.
Huawei and Beijing’s blockchain directory
Chinese tech giant Huawei and the municipal government of Beijing have worked together to develop a blockchain directory system that strives to improve government services and to better support the city’s business environment.
While still in its trial period, the platform would link Beijing’s 50 municipal departments and allow for easier interdepartmental communication and data sharing. Citizens would be able to seamlessly communicate with officials and municipal services to provide feedback and receive support at the push of a button.
This development is seen as a leading example of the role blockchain can play in urban modernization overseas and in the U.S.
Blockchain in real estate
Blockchain continues to disrupt the real estate space, with HashCash Consultants recently being recognized as the leading provider of blockchain-based real estate exchange solutions in the U.S.
There are several ways blockchain has helped shape the future of real estate, with perhaps the most notable being the tokenization of real property. This allows assets to be traded and exchanged online similarly to stocks. Developers like HashCash and ATLANT are at the forefront of those driving this technology forward.
Other benefits of blockchain within the real estate space include the removal of intermediaries (such as lawyers and banks), fractional property ownership, and a reduction in additional costs (such as inspections and taxes).
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