Money 2020: Dell and Blockchain

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The Money 2020 conference is in full swing this week, and it is difficult to find a technology more hyped at the event than Blockchain. It promises everything from transforming the banking system to being the “Internet v2.0”.

The biggest value of blockchain isn’t in what it is, but in what it enables. One quote that explains this well comes from Mark Buitenhek, the Global Head of Transactions Services @ ING: Blockchain is not the thing. It’s the thing that enables the thing. We agree with this perspective. Every encounter with a customer or company across all industries yields the following two key truths:

  1. The industry is looking at blockchain to help them optimize and transform themselves and their business processes so that they can outperform their competition;
  2. Blockchain is only useful if it is considered as part of a larger ecosystem.

Blockchain and distributed ledger technology is transforming the way companies look to address business goals and objectives moving forward. This technology sits at the intersection of a variety of ancillary systems, and it is that ecosystem, when properly constructed, that will allow businesses to achieve their goals or objectives for this technology. As companies look to incorporate blockchain technology into their enterprise class production environments, there are many pieces to consider.

Figure 1: The pinwheel of consideration for Blockchain

The figure above shows an example of some of the pieces that are part of that ecosystem.  Each element is fully explained here. Taking all of these elements into consideration is paramount to the success of a blockchain implementation. However, the first step in a blockchain engagement, should be the determination of whether blockchain is the right technology for the business problem or objective being addressed. Making that decision is the first step to a successful blockchain or distributed ledger implementation.

Dell EMC has developed a set of services to assist our customers in validating their blockchain use cases. Combined with business analysis, and using a sprint-based approach, we work to identify and qualify blockchain use cases in the following areas

On-Premise

Many use cases require blockchain to run on premise. The blockchain implementation will not live in a vacuum but must co-exist with existing server/network/storage infrastructure. This will require new services that assist in the design and architecture of functional solutions. Infrastructure includes servers and HCI with GPUs for extremely fast mining on Ethereum, servers and HCI with huge core counts to power Hyperledger chaincodes, and massive object stores to refer to off-chain data assets.

Off-Premise

Other companies, however, do not want the ownership and governance responsibility that comes with implementing a blockchain in-house. For these companies our service can steer the conversation towards our sister company Virtustream. Virtustream is exploring governance use cases for Secure Enterprise Ledgers.

Application

Newly designed blockchain applications that leverage and interact with blockchain back-ends will be cloud native in nature. Pivotal offers PaaS-based on premise or hybrid solutions focused on simplifying the deployment and management of cloud native applications. Offerings like NHC (Native Hybrid Cloud) or PKS, enable deployment in seconds, and allow developers to focus on the business logic code, versus all the components surrounding their applications.

Enterprise-Class Blockchain

Enterprise blockchain deployments are still in their infancy, and many businesses will need help deciphering the rapidly evolving landscape. The Dell EMC service can design around any blockchain, but no implementation can deliver a better enterprise-class blockchain than VMware. VMware’s blockchain research is realizing the advantages of a true enterprise class blockchain: scale, security, performance, and fault tolerance.

Together with the power of all the companies under the Dell Technologies umbrella, the Dell EMC blockchain service is well positioned to take our customers from start to finish in their mission to transform their business with blockchain technology.  Stop by the Pivotal and VMware booth at Money 2020 to hear more about the Dell Technologies blockchain vision.

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