Distributed Data Show Episode 33: Big Data and Blockchain

DuyHai Doan leads a discussion with Patrick McFadin and Jeff Carpenter on whether blockchain is a database, how blockchains and distributed databases complement each other, and what we can learn about distributed systems by looking at blockchain technology.

Highlights!
1:00 – DuyHai gives a quick introduction to blockchain
3:01 – Patrick explains why blockchain != Bitcoin
3:49 – We discuss whether a blockchain can be considered a type of database
5:38 – Blockchain limitations: limited transaction throughput and the difficulty of removing errors once they are in the chain
6:54 – Scalability and efficiency challenges of blockchains based on proof of work
8:44 – Techniques for overcoming scalability challenges of the blockchain
11:34 – How blockchains and distributed databases can be used together
12:39 – If some data moves out of the blockchain, where does it go? How about a log-structured merge tree-style database like Cassandra?
14:23 – On using blockchains for integrity/authenticity
14:47 – What we can learn from blockchain technology in the distributed database world: peer-to-peer protocols and hashing techniques
16:51 – Blockchain and distributed databases will intersect in large scale transactional systems in healthcare, retail and other industries

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