These smart contracts, designed to simplify, authorize and administer protocols better than conventional contract law, received worldwide attention through Ethereum’s use of the DAO (decentralized autonomous organization). Now Viant is publicly sharing their plans along with the industry leaders involved with the beta program (launched in Q3 of 2017) such as Microsoft, GlaxoSmithKline, and the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF). Co-founder and head of Global Business Development, Tyler Mulvihill, reported that the program intends to, “enable the world’s leading innovators to rapidly model and realize their most compelling blockchain use-cases on the platform.”
Utilized by Microsoft Azure, participants were able to better understand how their system worked along with improving their uses of blockchain and smart contract technology.
Here’s what Microsoft had to say about the beta:
“At Microsoft, we believe supply chain visibility and accountability will help unlock solutions to systemic sustainability and humanitarian challenges. Viant’s approach to tracking digitized goods across partners with blockchain technology will help create accountability in supply chains. By using Microsoft Azure, Viant and the beta program members have access to leading cloud and blockchain technology, underscored by Microsoft’s commitment to security, compliance, and transparency.”
However, Viant is not the first to use blockchain as a method to improve the conventional operations of global supply chains. A non-profit governance body known as The Sweetbridge Foundation intends to use the tech as a way to ensure smaller suppliers receive payment for their goods to decrease strategic procurements and the associated conflict/cost that comes with it. In addition, Kouvala Innovation assists shippers and carriers with transport via mining applications. Orders would be tracked and miners would bid to help move it. The carrier who is most suitable for the needs of the shipper will be rewarded with doing so and blockchain would continue to monitor its movement from A to B then Z and back.
Tyler Mulvihill told the Scope Weekly that Viant, along with blockchain technology, has the potential to make a significant social impact. He visualizes a future where people utilize this technology for “socially and environmentally responsible behavior” and self-sovereign identity solutions” such as uPort’s decentralized platform designed to mediate and secure information. The blockchain he feels encourages people to act responsibly and applying it to Viant’s supply chain endeavors will only further transparency “to record purity of goods, the ethics of their workforce, and an audit trail of resources used.”
ConsenSys recently launched the Blockchain for Social Impact Coalition designed to provide goods and services centered around the UN’s sustainable development goals. Mulvihill told the Scope Weekly that the initiative is “already making an impact” but didn’t go into specifics.
Mulvihill said to the Scope Weekly that rather than replacing fiat currency altogether, right now they are focused on “building an amazingly powerful supply chain platform on Ethereum” in hopes that smart contracts will optimize traditional supply chain activities. However, he mentioned that “several nation states” are already discussing digital fiats to benefit from blockchain and similar technology.
Taking into consideration the security risks involved with cryptoeconomics, such as the DAO hack in 2016 that stripped Ethereum nearly $4 million of ETH in just a few hours or the recent NiceHash hack for virtually $70 million, Mulvihill shared with us that he is confident his platform won’t be destined to a similar fate. He believes the biggest fallacy of traditional centralized security is placing all sensitive information under one roof allowing an easy point of entry for hackers. A good example of this was the Equifax breach earlier this year that hacked and extracted credit information from over 140 million Americans. However, blockchain eliminates this “single point of failure by putting users in control of their data and are generally more secure than traditional databases.” He said that Viant is “built on public key cryptography that manages and protects Ethereum’s blockchain network of $60 billion.”
We are living in a time where people are rethinking their normal ways of doing things and blockchain is offering an attractive solution for change. Now that crypto and smart contracts have been birthed from this decentralized womb, industry leaders are attempting to take advantage of this new technology while simultaneously striving for a new and improved quality of life. So far, the progress has been steady and it will take time before the system is optimized enough for more worldwide adoption/application. Viant is one of many companies that believe in the future of cryptoeconomics and the vision of decentralized transparency aka blockchain.