Review: ‘Blockchain: Blueprint for a New Economy’ by Melanie Swan

O’Reilly Media, Inc. has released a new book named ‘Blockchain: Blueprint for a New Economy’, that considers theoretical, philosophical, and societal impact of digital currencies and blockchain technologies.

Photo: Egor Pavlovich/Coinspeaker

Photo: Egor Pavlovich/Coinspeaker

On January 24, 2015, O’Reilly Media, Inc. has released ‘Blockchain: Blueprint for a New Economy‘ by Melanie Swan, founder of the Institute for Blockchain Studies. The book considers theoretical, philosophical, and societal impact of digital currencies and blockchain technologies.

It takes one beyond the currency and smart contracts to show how the blockchain is in position to become the fifth groundbreaking computing paradigm after mainframes, PCs, the Internet, and mobile/social networking.

Melanie Swan discusses concepts, features, and functionality of Bitcoin and the blockchain, using the blockchain for automated tracking of all digital areas, creating a decentralized digital repository to verify identity.

The author considers that the blockchain has potential of being a worldwide, decentralized record for the registration, inventory, and transfer of all assets: finances, property and intangible assets such as votes, software, health data, and ideas.

Besides, the book comprises such topics as creating cheaper, more efficient services traditionally provided by nations, making better use of the data-mining network.

Swan explains the operation of decentralized applications (DAPPs), decentralized autonomous organizations (DAOs), decentralized autonomous corporations (DACs), and decentralized autonomous societies (DASs) to readers.

The book includes speculations about how blockchain technologies could be used to monitor public health, crowdfund projects, provide community supercomputing, upload personal mindfiles, and even birth artificial intelligences.

‘Blockchain: Blueprint for a New Economy’ is part of a growing O’Reilly series. ‘Mastering Bitcoin: Unlocking Digital Crypto-Currencies’ by Andreas Antonopoulos, that was published several months ago, introduces Bitcoin and describes the technology behind Bitcoin and the blockchain.

The book includes a broad introduction to digital currency, an explanation of the technical foundations of digital currency and cryptographic currencies, details of the bitcoin decentralized network, peer-to-peer architecture, transaction lifecycle, and security principles, offshoots of the bitcoin and blockchain inventions, user stories, analogies, examples, and code snippets illustrating key technical concepts.

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