Blockchain is a technology that's making headway in 2017.
Originally designed to disrupt the banking industry through an alternative currency called Bitcoin, the framework for logging transactions in a transparent distributed environment through the use of a write-only ledger system based on contracts which is highly scalable is being repackaged for bigger things.
It's designed to be crypto friendly, so banking institutions are leveraging this framework to post transactions in real time, thus, removing the middle man 3rd party and speeding up movement of funds instantaneously. This has huge implications and has potential to disrupt an outdated system of money transfers.
Because the system is designed to run automatically without the need for administrators, the framework can be used in other industries besides finance such healthcare, retail, identity management, etc.
Blockchain seems gaining steam with support from some of the big vendors.
IBM sees the benefit of Blockchain, you can read about it here.
Read the Docs here posted 03 November 2016.
Get started here.
What is the Hyperledger Project (Enterprise class, cross industry, Open Source collaborative ecosystem, non vendor specific) here.
Actual .org site here.
Microsoft offer's a Blockchain as a Service on their Azure platform.
Ethereum Blockchain as a Service now on Azure Posted on November 9, 2015
Azure Blockchain as a Service update Posted on December 7, 2015
AWS also has Blockchain capabilities here.
Blockchain has potential to become the backbone of future technologies. For instance, Internet of Things. IoT which are decentralized applications running via sensors could write mini bursts of information to a decentralized Blockchain. This would create a legitimate audit trail, trigger downstream actions and give IoT the reliable security it needs.
I'm sure you'll be reading more about Blockchain as it becomes mainstream. It's just about there.
Thanks for reading~!