Bridging the gap between blockchain and healthcare.
Got forwarded this email? Subscribe here. Subscriber? I'd really appreciate if you could forward this resource to someone who would find it valuable or share it on other channels.
Blockchain in healthcare updates
Blockchain in Health Insurance A wide ranging piece touching on IBM's health utility network as well as the Synaptic Health Alliance. There's a quote in here by someone at IBM which suggests they are tackling claims processing as a use case, but the way it is framed seems non-committal.
CasperLabs is a well-funded new startup implementing the CBC Casper proof-of-stake protocol At a high level, proof-of-stake (PoS) is a different way of reaching consensus in blockchains. Validators (analogous to miners) stake money in order to gain the right to participate in consensus. If validators act dishonestly their stake is penalized in some way. The idea here is that PoS requires drastically less energy and could be more scalable than the incumbent proof-of-work (PoW).
Ethereum has had plans to move away from PoW and to PoS for some time now. Vlad Zamfir specified the technical protocol for this, called CBC Casper, and Ethereum is racing towards implementing this. It is a very daunting task to do so. The central thesis behind CasperLabs is that we should be moving towards CBC Casper style PoS, but that it is much easier to implement this from scratch as opposed to transitioning an existing system like Ethereum to PoS. To that end, they've raised $20m from key VCs, plan to launch their own blockchain, and critically have hired Vlad Zamfir to be their lead architect. Vlad has said he will continue his work on Ethereum as well.
Polkadot: The Foundation of a New Internet Polkadot is trying to be a "global network of blockchains," both enabling cross-chain interoperability as well as creating shared security infrastructure that others can tap into. It is technically ambitious and a key project to watch in the coming months.