Blockchain is on the verge of revolutionizing how we interact in the digital world. It has far reaching applications from the Financial industry to many other sectors of the economy. The question is what is Blockchain, what are the underlying concepts, what is the current state of technological implementation and the current state of its regulatory landscape.
While the answers to these questions take multiple volumes of articles by a vast array of experts in numerous related fields, in this article we will address these questions and provide some basic answers. For those active in the general Blockchain and Digital currency space, from the academic, technology, industry, legal or other points of view, it is important to have a broad overview of the space in general.
We provide a general description of Distributed Ledger Technology, Blockchains, Blockchain Technology and Digital Currencies, discuss the associated basic concepts and definitions and the interplay between these concepts. We discuss Blockchain Technical Concepts and infrastructure implementations, their tradeoffs, benefits, limitations and metrics by which the performance these implementations are measured. We also address the concept of Permissioned Blockchains, and a number of practical applications of Blockchains beyond the financial industry applications.