Back to our Developer Showcase Series to learn what developers in the real world are doing with Hyperledger technologies. Next up is Si Chen, president of Open Source Strategies, Inc.
Give a bit of background on what you’re working on and how you got into blockchain
We’re building an “operating system” that links together data, transactions, and user engagement and can be used for climate action at any scale, from supra-national cap and trade programs to community-scale energy or nature-based projects.
I got into blockchain because I saw that while there was a lot of new innovation for tackling climate change, it was difficult to get our existing centralized institutions to adopt them. Blockchain lets us build collaboration even when there are no central authorities available.
What Hyperledger frameworks or tools are you using in your projects? Any new developments to share? Can you sum up your experience with Hyperledger?
We’ve worked with Fabric and Besu and are looking at Cactus and a Hyperledger Labs project called TrustID.
Overall the experience with Hyperledger has been great! It’s a large community that has helped us learn a lot about this emerging field, and there’s a lot of developer support available.
What do you think is most important for Hyperledger to focus on in the next year?
Bringing different projects together to address a few complete application-scale use cases so that we can see there is a Hyperledger solution to building full-fledged applications.
What advice would you offer other technologists or developers interested in getting started working on blockchain?
Skip the hype. Blockchain is not just bitcoin trading. It’s a lot more mature than you realize. It’ll probably transform on your field, so get ahead of the game by really learning how it works.
As Hyperledger’s projects continue to mature, what do you see as the most interesting technologies, apps, or use cases coming out as a result?
Ownership of Data.
Today your financial ratings are owned by your banks, your health records are owned by your doctor, your online credibility is owned by social networks, and your climate records are owned by, well, nobody. Important data is spread out across many different “silos,” and it becomes impossible to piece them all back again.
Imagine a future where users own their data by storing them immutably on blockchains–financial, health, social, climate, etc.–and grant access to them to providers in return for services. This could solve a lot of interesting problems: Providing credit to the unbanked. Better health care and public health management. Useful collective action. A solution to climate change.
What’s the one issue or problem you hope blockchain can solve?
Collaboration. Climate change is just one (huge) problem that results from lack of collaboration due to a lack of coordinating authorities. Blockchain is the technology for building collaboration networks and could solve a lot of big problems.
Where do you hope to see Hyperledger and/or blockchain in five years?
I’d like to see Hyperledger being a key part of the blockchain ecosystem that brings together people all over the world to collaborate together.
What is the best piece of developer advice you’ve ever received?
Make it Easy for Your Users.
What technology could you not live without?
Agriculture? Electricity? Computers? The Internet? This is a very humbling question and makes me realize how much we depend on each other.