To the frequent question: “Is blockchain-technology difficult or simple?”, – the correct answer is: “Yes and no.” The essence of the technology itself is simple. It is nothing more than a database that is distributed among all its registered users, and which is launched simultaneously on a large number of nodes installed around the world. In this case, users can be both individuals and organizations. The simplicity of the blockchain is combined with its uniqueness. And its uniqueness lies in the fact that all actions that are carried out and reflected in the blockchain are irreversible and immutable.
So, the technology itself is simple, however, in contrast to it, the process of implementing and maintaining blockchain-technology is not at all simple. And the reason is that the blockchain-infrastructure (BCI) plays a significant role here, the configuration and maintenance of which is a long, complex, and expensive “pleasure”. Therefore, blockchain infrastructure companies services are in such demand now in the field of blockchain.
Blockchain-technology and business
Blockchain-technology has gradually transformed from a cryptocurrency management tool into a growing business. It turned out that its use significantly affects the business processes of companies, especially those that are directly related to information management, product branding, copyrights, various assets, both digital and tangible, etc.
Three years ago, specialists conducted a large-scale survey among senior management of almost one and a half thousand companies in several countries. In half of the companies that participated in the survey, blockchain-technology had already been adapted successfully to business processes. The leaders of the remaining companies admitted that they expect their competitiveness to decrease in the future if they continue to ignore the blockchain. The survey results also showed that executives are convinced of the investment attractiveness of the blockchain and are ready to include this technology in the business plans of companies as an essential element of their strategic development.
However, when users decide on the prospects for working with blockchain technology, they need to clearly assess their ability to implement and maintain BCI. Earlier it was said that this process can be not only long and complicated but also can lead to significant financial costs. To prove this let’s remember what BCI is. Without going into details, we note that BCI is a set of technologies, programs, and mechanisms that ensure the functioning of the block chain, as well as support and ensure the security of the actions of all participants in the blockchain network.
The main components of the blockchain-infrastructure
We list the most important components of the BCI. The first of these includes various types of nodes, the main purpose of which is to verify transactions, forward the votes of network participants and ensure the preservation of blockchain records. The second component of the BCI is the so-called support programs. The task of such programs is to monitor the correct performance of the required functions by the nodes and, if necessary, to make the necessary adjustments. For example, a support program can balance the traffic flow among the servers, resulting in increased node responsiveness. Or activate the node protection function in the event that a failure occurs in the system. Also worth mentioning are support options such as monitoring and alerting and containerizing application codes for version control. And finally, to the third component, we should include security programs. And this function includes, first of all, the management of hooded keys that provide access to the blockchain and transactions.
Even from this short review, it becomes clear that the management of such a BCI by the users themselves will require significant resources, certain technical competence, appropriate equipment, up-to-date software products, and, of course, the unconditional reliability of the Internet network itself.
Also, one should not forget that in the case of self-configuration and support of blockchain network nodes, users should be prepared for the fact that this may occur to the detriment of their main functions and tasks.
A good way out in such a situation may be the decision to resort to the services of outsourcer companies capable of providing BCI services.