Book Image

Foundations of Blockchain

By : Koshik Raj
Book Image

Foundations of Blockchain

By: Koshik Raj

Overview of this book

Blockchain technology is a combination of three popular concepts: cryptography, peer-to-peer networking, and game theory. This book is for anyone who wants to dive into blockchain from first principles and learn how decentralized applications and cryptocurrencies really work. This book begins with an overview of blockchain technology, including key definitions, its purposes and characteristics, so you can assess the full potential of blockchain. All essential aspects of cryptography are then presented, as the backbone of blockchain. For readers who want to study the underlying algorithms of blockchain, you’ll see Python implementations throughout. You’ll then learn how blockchain architecture can create decentralized applications. You’ll see how blockchain achieves decentralization through peer-to-peer networking, and how a simple blockchain can be built in a P2P network. You’ll learn how these elements can implement a cryptocurrency such as Bitcoin, and the wider applications of blockchain work through smart contracts. Blockchain optimization techniques, and blockchain security strategies are then presented. To complete this foundation, we consider blockchain applications in the financial and non-financial sectors, and also analyze the future of blockchain. A study of blockchain use cases includes supply chains, payment systems, crowdfunding, and DAOs, which rounds out your foundation in blockchain technology.
Table of Contents (14 chapters)


This book was created to help you explore the exciting blockchain technology, and in this first chapter, we're going to dive into its foundational concepts. The idea is to present a fairly broad overview of blockchain, allowing you to be fully prepared for the topics that we'll cover in more depth in later chapters. Since our intention is to introduce blockchain, the following topics will be covered throughout this chapter:

  • What blockchain is and isn't
  • How blockchains are different from databases
  • The history, motivations, and characteristics of blockchain
  • The different types of blockchain
  • Overview of blocks and how they work
  • The influence of Moore's law on blockchain technology

We'll start with the basics of blockchain, including its myths and history. We'll explore the ideas behind some key blockchain concepts, we'll end with an overview of how exactly the blockchain technology works. The topics in this chapter are designed to give you enough motivation and confidence to feel comfortable with the topics we'll be discussing later in the book.