Evolution of Blockchain Technology

Blockchain Basics

At its essence, a Blockchain is simply an immutable ledger which is not operated or maintained by any single entity, but rather a network of nodes (peers). Whilst these serve as the fundamental foundations of the technology, Blockchain ledgers can be fairly diverse in implementation and purpose.

Bitcoin and Ethereum

The Bitcoin network marked the first live implementation of a Blockchain ledger, leveraging its unique UTXO model and Proof-of-Work consensus process to facilitate simple digital currency transactions between counter-parties without the use of an intermediary.

Several years after Bitcoin’s introduction, the Ethereum network went live; Ethereum built upon Bitcoin’s unique Proof-of-Work based model and leveraged its immutable features to demonstrate the first feasible implementation of a platform for Smart Contracts.

Stablecoins and Dapps

Rather than simply updating balances between counter-parties, Ethereum enabled users to attach immutable instructions to their transactions, effectively enabling them to deploy simple programs which would reside on the Ethereum network and execute transactions if certain conditions were met. Ethereum therefore earned the title of “programmable money”, enabling features such as escrow services, the issuance of tokens, and Stablecoins to be programmed into the Ethereum network - these programs were dubbed ‘Decentralized Applications’ (dApps).

Lack of Interoperability

Several new and innovative models have emerged since, however unfortunately despite the immense level of diversity, these unique networks lack the ability to communicate. A simple analogy would be if users of the Windows and Mac operating systems were unable to communicate with one another, thus making it impossible to share files and resources between the two. As one would imagine, this would significantly reduce the utility of each operating system and serve as a substantial barrier to adoption.

Overline and Proof of Distance.

Overline builds upon these foundations yet again. Using Bitcoin’s Proof-of-Work algorithm as inspiration, Proof-of-Distance was completely custom engineered to bring completely disinter-mediated interoperability to the Blockchain industry.