When taking Hyperledger Fabric into consideration it is vital to make important distinctions. The concept of blockchain has often been confused and in contrast to the conceptual model belonging to the crypto community.
There is no doubt that the Bitcoin blockchain was the first practical and functioning application capable of making the concept of decentralized ledger technology (DLT) known to the world. Thanks to it, the imagination and creativity of many people have allowed this technology to take very different paths from the one set up in the world of cryptocurrencies.
In doing so, two very different concepts of understanding the blockchain have emerged:
- Permissioned blockchain (private);
- Permissionless blockchain (public).
The difference is apparently simple, while its complexity is not covered by this article and for this reason, we apologize for the simplification.
- In the first case, the private one, the network nodes that validate the status changes of the ledger are active members of the project. The distribution of responsibilities and network sharing allow a sufficient degree of trust in the consensus model. To take part in the consensus, it is necessary to be accepted.
- In the second case, the public one, the consensus is in the hands of a large network of nodes that do not have to trust each other and through the activation of the code, everyone can participate in the network, without barriers and without permission.
To the first category belongs Hyperledger Fabric, while the second one includes Bitcoin and Ethereum for example.
Hyperledger: an expanding world
Hyperledger is an open-source community focused on the development of a suite, a framework, tools and libraries for blockchain implementation at the enterprise level.
It is a brand of the Linux Foundation.
Hyperledger is not only defined as a private blockchain, as its vocation is much broader and includes a wide range of interoperable processes capable of communicating with public blockchains such as Ethereum.
For this reason, Hyperledger is followed by several suffixes that determine its field of action, the functionalities expressed and the objects of study.
A wide range of members participates in the development of standards and models with the aim of jointly developing the new architecture based on the blockchain concept.
- American Express,
- Change Healthcare,
Recently also Consensys, the company launched by the co-founder of Ethereum, Joseph Lubin, took part in the list of premier members. Interoperability is the key to the success of the public and private blockchains that come together.
The creation of Baseline has become one of the most interesting news for Ethereum and Hyperledger in 2020.
The fundamental concept is to make ETH the safe public blockchain to connect to. All private projects that want to ensure greater data security or different levels of privacy can connect with their consortium blockchains to a public one.
The blockchain of blockchains.
Who is using Hyperledger Fabric
Companies such as IBM have used Hyperledger Fabric as a matrix on which to set up their services guaranteeing clients the simple and secure development of private blockchains.
Microsoft itself has made it possible to link its Azure services to consortia which use Hyperledger Fabric.
Hyperledger Fabric is a private blockchain network that is set up by organizations intending to create a consortium. The organizations that participate in the construction of the Hyperledger Fabric network are called “members”.
Hedera Hashgraph has recently released a consensus service (HCS) that can be used by Hyperledger to allow time-stamping and ordering transactions efficiently and securely. Hedera calls itself a public blockchain, but for the moment it is still a consortium of companies that exploit an innovative and efficient consensus protocol.
Concrete projects based on Hyperledger
Axuall is a digital network for verification of identity, credentials and authenticity in real-time using Sorvin Network and Hyperledger Indy.
The Axuall network is currently in a pilot phase with Hyr Medical and its network of over 650 physicians.
LedgerDomain has joined forces with other industry leaders such as Pfizer, IQVIA, UPS, Merck, UCLA Health, GSK, Thermo Fisher and Biogen to build a targeted pilot project developed over two years, KitChain aims to present a robust collaborative model for clinical pharmaceutical supply chain management, creating an immutable record for tracking shipments and events without the need for paper documents and manual transcripts.
This drug production project uses Amazon Web Services technologies to run Machine Learning algorithms from large-scale academic partners. The data never leaves the owner’s infrastructure.
Medicalchain was one of the first blockchain companies in the healthcare industry to join the Hyperledger community, becoming a member in 2017. The ethos of the company is to allow patients to have access to their medical records.
Providing patients with direct access to their data unlocks the barriers we face in healthcare today such as patient choice and interoperability issues. The team is led by a physician based in the UK.
SecureKey launched its innovative network for Canadian consumers in early 2019. Verified.Me is a blockchain-based digital identity network built on Hyperledger Fabric 1.2 that allows consumers to retain control of their information by choosing when and with whom to share information, reducing over-sharing of personal information.
Sun Life Financial has signed an early adoption contract and will be the first North American (health) insurer to make it easier for its customers to do business with the company.