Forget Apple Pay and its mobile brethren; IBM and Samsung are busy realizing the first application of block chain technology by major corporations – and fast.
The partnership will see the technology giants consult on Adept, a protocol which will be used to overcome various problems associated with the increasingly frequently mentioned Internet of Things.
In charge is IBM’s head of mobile and internet, Paul Brody. In an interview with Gigaom last week, Brody considered the current impracticalities of the IoT concept and how it was necessary to streamline at the fundamental level.
“For him the internet of things as a plethora of devices talking to the cloud doesn’t make much fundamental sense. There’s way too much overhead in operating a cloud platform, especially for devices that are designed to live in people’s homes for a decade or longer,” Gigaom summarizes following a podcast in which Brody spells out the intricacies of the idea.
“Building a cloud back end to support your dishwasher when not that many devices will realistically want to talk to your dishwasher seems impractical,” the argument continues.
- Paul Brody
There are also issues regarding long-term device support; sale of user data to support such services over a longer period does not guarantee their survival if the manufacturer itself is not secure.
Using the blockchain or equivalent could provide a practical, intuitive solution. But if the idea of mainstream blockchain implementation by January next year seems too intense to be true, that’s because the road is never so clear-cut. Brody is eyeing a selection of alternatives which would see Adept’s protocol either only partially synched or separated from the Bitcoin blockchain.
“The question then is whether Adept could be built a) on top of the Bitcoin protocol, much like Mastercoin or Counterparty; b) as a separate framework, much like NXT or Ethereum; or c) as a ‘side chain’ which could have a two-way relationship with the block chain,” blogger Two Bit Idiot wrote upon quizzing Brody about the project.
From its initial characteristics, Adept does indeed appear structurally similar to Ethereum in that it comprises a blockchain, BitTorrent and private messaging protocol TeleHash, mimicking Ethereum’s core components.
While the Ethereum team is yet to comment, however, the community consensus seems to give Adept the benefit of the doubt for the time being.
“[The] majority of what I read on it says its too early to tell, although I think I saw something about it being a ethereum fork which doesn't mean much since ethereum is still in development,” Drew Carey told Cointelegraph via its Facebook community outreach.
“They're not the same project. Ethereum has yet to actually deliver a product. Competition will be good for them, and good for us,” Tapeke’s Will Pangman commented conversely.
A lot can change in five months, and it will be interesting to see how the eventual product from the IBM-Samsung partnership can be sold to a mainstream audience.
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