In Alice in Wonderland, the Mad Hatter famously asks “why is a raven like a writing desk?”. You may feel the same sense of confusion when you see our headline. Nowadays the word ‘blockchain’ has become a bit like ‘Hoover’ in the sense that it has become a generic term to describe a whole range of options that may not even technically be a blockchain.
It is not always easy to find the right way to define blockchain. The definition often depends on the who is asking the question – their age, level of technical expertise, professional experience and so on. And to make it even harder, the definition of blockchain itself is also constantly evolving as technology moves on and adds new layers of sophistication. So how should we define blockchain in 2020?
“an operating system for the planet”
“a shared version of the truth”
“a new mindset about how we organise business and society”
“a shared diary”
“a giant Google spreadsheet for the planet”
“the largest distributed computing project in the world”
“a distributed database that maintains a continuously growing list of records called blocks” (Vinay Gupta)
“the World Wide Ledger”
“a decentralized audit trail or bank statement”
“a truly open, distributed, global platform that fundamentally changes what we can do online, how we do it, and who can participate” (Don Tapscott)
Definitions matter because we can’t expect people to adopt and use what we can’t explain in simple terms. So what’s your favourite go-to definition of blockchain? And if you’re still not sure what a blockchain actually is – or or how best to describe it to newcomers – check out our resources page for more definitions. We are planning lots more new content in 2020 so do get in touch and tell us what you’d most like to learn about.
"Very well organised and provided our team with a great opportunity to make many useful connections"
"Unblocked Events designed and delivered a 4-week virtual hackathon for us. It’s not over yet, but we are already planning another & will definitely use Helen and her team. Unblocked delivered everything, holding our hand 7-days a week and delivering not just the developers that we needed but also high profile government support, celebrity endorsements, judges, mentors, specifications… and a whole host of other crucial elements that we would have been likely to overlook."
"a pioneer in Blockchain and emerging technologies and a champion for women in blockchain. She is an accomplished policy analyst and writer and is a leader in the London Blockchain ecosystem, especially exploring industry verticals like health."
"It has been wonderful working with Helen. She is an expert in the blockchain and distributed ledger space, having been an early proponent of the technology. I've learned so much from her, and she has provided valuable consulting services to us"
"An excellent event in all ways"
"Attracted a high quality of delegate and speaker that led to some genuinely unique and interesting conversations."
"Superb content and speakers"
"It was a great experience! We listened to amazing, influential presentations and acquired important networks. Loved it!"
"Great events with great participants, discussions and topics. A must-attend every year!"
"Healthcare Unblocked is a cut above the rest - a unique smart agenda designed to unwrap pertinent topics wrapped up in a naturally cosy atmosphere where you can really connect with people. If impersonal blockbuster events leave you cold, reconnect with Unblocked Events."
"as informative and insightful as it was entertaining, with the distinguished panel offering diverse opinions on blockchain's manifold applications. Networking opportunities were ample and the good food a real bonus."
"Unblocked's events are always highlights in the calendar - interesting, informative and inspiring in equal measure"
"Unblocked continues to curate exceptional events on how industries and processes can be enhanced with the introduction of Distributed Ledger Technologies"
"A truly worthwhile event"
"I had the pleasure of meeting Helen Disney last year when she organised what I would have said was the premier event in Blockchain."
"This is one of the best curated series in London or globally. This is a great opportunity to learn new things and going ons in the space."
"An extremely high quality, cutting edge event with expert speakers and well informed audience - thoroughly enjoyable and excellent learnings"
"a rich, intelligently designed agenda and a chance to network with go getters"
"Healthcare Unblocked 2018 was a seminal event"
"A really great and informative session with a lot of impressive speakers"
"Healthcare Unblocked was the first healthtech event we’ve attended that truly covered new ground, spoke in line with the sector, and exhibited extremely well-informed speakers and audience."
"One of the best conferences ever with a level of relevant and real-world examples that are not always found"
"I was most impressed by the quality of speakers and delegates. We are at the challenging phase of moving from theory to practice for many of the potential users of blockchain. Your events are certainly helping to bridge the gap!"
"Your healthcare event was brilliant. Glad to see that London still leads the way in terms of international innovation."
"The most succinct explanation of what Blockchain could do for our sector to date"
"Very interesting and a proper glimpse into the not-too-distant future. The talks felt particularly relevant to my area of work so I'll be investigating further."
We are always delighted to hear from you about Blockchain events, information and news – whether you are a newcomer or an expert, get in touch and let us know your comments and questions.