Blockchain is a digital ledger

Have you heard how blockchain is going to disrupt literally everything? Blockchain is the new black in technology. It’s exciting, it’s new, and it might just disrupt the business world as we know it. Or maybe not. Like every NEXT NEW THING in technology, there’s a whole lot of smoke and it’s hard to see the fire.

Remember how 3D TV, Google Glass, VR headsets, and augmented reality were going to disrupt entertainment and the workplace as we knew it? I’m still waiting for my virtual reality computer workstation to arrive.

If you’re late to the blockchain party, blockchain experts like Betinna Warburg explain it is the underlying tech that supports cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin (which, let’s face it, you don’t use) and useful office applications like Google Docs (which you may use, and which I used to draft this article).

So how does blockchain work? Who cares. You’ll never need to know the technical details, unless you’re in the IT department, so I won’t bore you with them here.

What does blockchain do? Blockchain means your data (for your work documents or cryptocurrency) is no longer stored in just one central location—instead your data is distributed across a network of computers. Some refer to it as a digital ledger.

What does blockchain mean for your data? Your documents are always available and cannot be lost. Since the data is distributed, it can be seen and verified by anyone who has access to it. This is why several people can edit a Google Doc as long as they have some good coffee and a decent internet connection.

The Two Ways Blockchain Will Change Your Life

1. Every Way: If you work in the music industry, or in a business that distributes and guarantees data, then fasten your seatbelts—you’re in for the disruptive ride of your life.

People working for third-party payment processors, notaries, real estate, and info storage organizations and the like could be looking for new jobs once blockchain tech becomes commonplace. Blockchain reduces the need for third-party intermediaries to conduct and verify transactions.

2. Not at all: If you’re not in a third-party-intermediary industry, blockchain won’t disrupt your business. However, it may change your method of sharing data with partners, the software you use to collaborate online, or how your finance department processes payments without banks.

So when it comes to blockchain, it may be the NEXT NEW THING, but we won’t know if it’s a real disruptor until it’s already happened.