Developer showcase series: Juan Navarro, Biztribution

Back to our Developer Showcase Series to learn what developers in the real world are doing with Hyperledger technologies. Next up is Juan Navarro of Biztribution.

What advice would you offer other technologists or developers interested in getting started working on blockchain?

First, I recommend having a look at Anders Brownworth’s website “how blockchain works”. It’s a very easy way to understand how and why blockchain works. Next, add some PKI infrastructure reading to know who did what and… congratulations! Now, you know the foundations of blockchain.

When it comes to Hyperledger Fabric, don’t let the seeming complexity make you reluctant to dive in. At first sight, Hyperledger Fabric may look a bit overwhelming  with a lot of different technologies and configuration files.. However, to quote Albert Einstein: “Learning is experience. Everything else is just information.” Don’t be afraid of the vast amount of documentation you can find about Hyperledger. Instead, I recommend, start with the Fabric demo. Then, watch Chaincode for developers and some of the other online examples. Suddenly, everything will begin to make sense and you will start to understand the architecture and its beauty.

Give a bit of background on what you’re working on, and let us know what was it that made you want to get into blockchain?

Our project is related to giving governance of content distribution back to airlines. Airlines are competitors and partners at the same time. For that reason, they have to share some information continuously and keep other information private. In order to achieve that today, they rely on third parties that centralize all their data to retail their contents, specifically over indirect channels. We have identified blockchain as the answer to solve this puzzle, and Hyperledger Fabric as the technology the industry needs.

What project in Hyperledger are you working on? Any new developments to share? Can you sum up your experience with Hyperledger?

We are mainly working with Hyperledger Fabric. At the moment, we have successfully done several lab proofs-of-concept with millions of routes, availabilities, fares, geographic data, etc. It is amazing to see how the information flows among peers.

What do you think is most important for Hyperledger to focus on in the next year?

  • Pluggable interfaces and documentation.
  • Performance metrics as a function of transactions/sec, peers, consensus, channels, participants, orderers, etc. It would be great to get an answer to the white paper published by the Performance and Scalability Working Group.
  • Guidelines about how many orderers we need to deploy as a function of organizations, transactions, peers, performance, etc.

As Hyperledger’s incubated projects start maturing and hit 1.0s and beyond, what are the most interesting technologies, apps, or use cases coming out as a result from your perspective?

Sovereign ID initiatives. I am very careful about sharing my personal data. I have always asked myself “why do I have to give my ID when I subscribe to a service, in hotels, shops, etc.?” Are there other alternatives that fulfill regulatory requirements and preserve my privacy at the same time?

What’s the one issue or problem you hope blockchain can solve?

Well, our goal is to reinvent an  industry by creating a new revolutionary, automated and simple distribution model for the travel and tourism ecosystem. Based on Distributed Ledger Technology, we enable airlines to regain control over their contents. This creates a shift towards a fully decentralized scenario in which flexibility and de-commoditization are achieved, translating into more efficient operations and a significant reduction in  distribution costs.

Where do you hope to see Hyperledger and/or blockchain in 5 years?

I hope to see Hyperledger in a lot of interactions on a daily basis where  end users are not even able to perceive that Hyperledger is working behind the scenes. That’s the magic of technology!

What is the best piece of developer advice you’ve ever received?

Don’t write a single line of code until you have a clear understanding of what you want to get done.

What technology could you not live without?

Short answer: Linux and… Linux!

At home, I’m a big fan of Raspberry Pi because you have a great computer with a very low energy consumption and no noise. With it, I have IPTV, home automation, VPN and content filtering for kids.

At work, micro services architecture! Once you try it, you can’t live without it!