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区块链国际资讯

IBM推出“廉价版”区块链平台,专注企业商业模式而非加密货币

近日,IBM宣布推出一种新的区块链产品,让创业公司和开发人员能够建立自己的分布式账本项目。

可以说,这项服务是这家科技巨头为寻求开发区块链应用的企业制定的企业计划的一个“廉价”版本。

区块链,也被称为分布式账本技术,是一个庞大的分布式数据库,它维护着不断增长的交易记录或其他数据。它最初被用来支撑数字货币比特币——尽管加密货币不是IBM在区块链方面所关注的重点。

与支持比特币的公有区块链网络不同,IBM的技术只允许一定数量的可信方访问,这种类型的区块链被称为“许可式”。

IBM的区块链启动计划目前处于beta测试模式,开发者可以自由使用,直到发布商业版本。该公司没有透露一旦产品完全发布后用户如果想要继续使用则需要花多少钱。

IBM区块链总经理玛丽·威克(Marie Wieck)周三表示:

“对于那些想要在IBM区块链平台上构建解决方案的人来说,新计划是试验项目和早期开发工作的完美选择。目前IBM区块链平台已经有超过250个活跃的区块链网络。我们在建立和扩展网络方面的专业知识是宝贵的,我们将在一个广泛的生态系统中进行分享。”

该公司还宣布新服务的推出旨在帮助一些公司开发自己的区块链应用并将其商业化。

几家知名公司已经在IBM平台上试验了区块链技术。一些大企业像IBM一样更容易接受这种许可式区块链的想法,因为它们的设计是为了防止篡改和保持交易数据的私密性。

去年,IBM加入了一个由全球食品公司组成的联盟,共同努力追踪食品供应中的污染情况。今年1月,IBM表示,它打算与丹麦航运公司马士基(Maersk)成立一家新公司,目的是利用区块链技术简化两家公司之间的全球贸易。

另一家机构,全球审计四巨头之一安永(EY),一直在开发自己的船运保险区块链平台,供微软、马士基等多家公司使用。专家认为,这项技术将颠覆严重依赖纸面跟踪的行业。

IBM不专注于加密货币

Wieck说,IBM专注于分布式账本技术,而不是比特币等数字资产。

她表示,IBM押注于加密货币底层使用的区块链技术,因为它为新的多方交易和商业模式提供了动力。

去年10月,IBM与区块链初创公司Stellar和加密货币交易服务公司KlickEx合作开发了一个平台,让银行能够快速清算和结清支付。Wieck说,作为合作的一部分,IBM正在使用Stellar的数字代币恒星币作为“加快实时清算和结算速度的桥梁”。

Wieck补充说,围绕反洗钱的监管和政府支持的数字货币的想法更多地代表了一个机会。

根据德勤去年底公布的研究,许多区块链项目在成立几个月内就被放弃了。该审计公司说,在2016年,软件协作平台gitHub上的26000个开源项目中只有8%的项目在进行研究时仍在积极维护。

与此同时,IBM周二宣布推出沃森助理(Watson Assistant)服务,该服务可以帮助企业为他们的产品建立他们的语音助理。该虚拟助理不同于亚马逊和谷歌等公司提供的服务,因为它是针对汽车制造商和酒店等公司的企业解决方案,而不是针对家庭的产品。

IBM has unveiled a new blockchain product that lets start-ups and developers build their own distributed ledger projects.

The service is a cheaper alternative to Big Blue's current enterprise plan for firms looking to develop blockchain applications.

Blockchain, otherwise known as distributed ledger technology, is a massive distributed database that maintains a growing record of transactions or other data. It was originally used to underpin the digital currency bitcoin — although cryptocurrencies are not what IBM is focusing on with its blockchain endeavors.

Different to the public blockchain network that underpins bitcoin, IBM's technology only allows a certain number of trusted parties to access it. This type of blockchain is known as "permissioned."

IBM's blockchain starter plan is currently in beta testing mode, and is free for developers to use until commercial release. The firm did not disclose how much the product would cost once it is fully released.

"The new plan is perfect for pilot projects and early stage development work for those who want to build solutions on the IBM blockchain platform which currently has over 250 active blockchain networks," Marie Wieck, general manager of IBM Blockchain, told CNBC in an email on Wednesday.

"Our expertise in building and scaling networks is invaluable and will be shared across a wide ecosystem."

The firm also announced the launch of new services aimed at helping firms explore and commercialize their own blockchain applications.

Several well-established companies have been piloting blockchain technology with IBM's platform. Some big businesses are more at ease with the idea of permissioned blockchains like IBM's as they are designed to be tamper proof and keep transaction data private.

Last year IBM was joined by a consortium of global food corporations in a collaborative effort to trace contamination in the food supply. In January, the firm said it looked to establish a new company with Danish shipping firm Moller-Maersk aimed at using blockchain technology to simplify global trade between the two companies.

Another organization, EY, has been working on its own blockchain platform for shipping insurance to be used by Microsoft, Maersk and a number of other firms. Experts believe that the technology will disrupt industries that rely heavily on paper trails.

IBM not focused on cryptocurrencies

Wieck said IBM focused on distributed ledger technology rather than digital assets like bitcoin.

"IBM's bet is on the blockchain technology underneath cryptocurrencies since it powers new multi-party transactions and business models," she told CNBC.

The company partnered with blockchain start-up Stellar and currency exchange service KlickEx in October to develop a platform that allows banks to rapidly clear and settle payments. As part of the partnership, IBM is using Stellar's digital token, lumens, as a "bridge to speed real time clearing and settlement," Wieck said.

Regulations surrounding anti-money laundering and the idea of government-backed digital currencies represented more of an opportunity, Wieck added.

According to Deloitte research published late last year, many blockchain projects are abandoned within months of being established. Just 8 percent of the 26,000 open-source projects on software collaborative platform GitHub in 2016 were still actively maintained at the time the research was undertaken, the auditing firm said.

Meanwhile, on Tuesday, IBM announced the launch of Watson Assistant, a service for companies to build their voice-activated assistants for their products. The virtual assistant is dissimilar to that offered by players like Amazon and Google in that it is an enterprise solution targeted at companies like automakers and hotels, rather than a product for the home.


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