Blockchain, fake drugs and SAP

SAP has launched a blockchain-based supply chain tracking system to allow drug wholesalers to authenticate pharmaceutical packaging returned by pharmacies and hospitals. That should help them weed out counterfeit drugs from their supply chain.

SAP has done some interesting things trying to integrate blockchain and their HANA platform. They use hyperledger, are part of the hyperledger foundation and alliance and consortium, but it works a little different than ethereum or bitcoin. It’s private or permissionEd. Thus, the entire decentralized nature is lost. There is no real token or crypto involved with the hyperledger dlt or even a private ethereum blockchain really. In all honesty some aspects of these private token-less DLT systems and platforms help us move away from the “buy my useless pointless token.”

The hard part is that the immutable nature of Blockchain is just a pseudo “not really true” immutability for these private blockchains. Trust IBM or SAP or a big bank or a big pharma or retail or whomever instead. It’s centralized. It’s not transparent. And We do that already with normal databases and nosql. And In what world should anybody trust Mark Zuckerberg and the Facebook staff to build their own blockchain and token ? Or IBM or SAP or Goldman Sachs or Wal-mart?

In a way it becomes a poor database solution. There are tons of distributed databases and platforms that would be far more efficient and effective vs a centralized private blockchain with no tokenization or incentives built in. Sell you on the immutable nature of Blockchain, but ignore the fact hadoop and HDFS and others were a write once, can’t update file system that is far more scalable and adaptable. True they work differently, but if you don’t trust a Pfizer or IBM or SAP to do right by your Hadoop filesystem, how are you suddenly trusting them with some version of a centralized hyperledger like blockchain ?

Now if it’s every or most big pharma companies who join this blockchain consortium platform and are competing with one another and don’t trust each other , there is a built in incentive to be more transparent. But the world doesn’t really work that way. Many of these people switch sides all the time , merge , get acquired and it becomes a nepotistic like family where it’s more important to protect the big pharma or whatever industry as a whole vs direct competition. So it gets back to who trusts any of the big pharma companies to operate a transparent immutable private blockchain ? Do you ?

How SAP blockchain works ….

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Edge computing big in 2019

IoT — sensor data analysis and aggregation. This is clearly the most prominent use case and one that is by no means exclusive to manufacturers. Every government needs to prioritize smart city programs and sensor data AI expansion in its military, transportation, and security agencies. And every financial services, healthcare, and education organization should tie sensor data into their business values. And every SaaS and data software company needs to empower their customers to aggregate sensor data…”

Interesting read. IOT and smart cities are coming and here to stay. But will they be secure ? And easy to use and analyzed by everyday citizens and organizations ?

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Identity of Things (IDOT) or Internet of Things or both ?

We’ve all heard about IOT and IIOT by now. The internet of things or industrial internet of things has been a ‘thing’ and hype for like a decade already. Smart cities , smart buildings and smart devices all play a part in this ecosystem and niche. It’s coming they say.

A billion dollar and trillions of devices niche. And growing. However security has been an issue for years and securing these devices has been confusing and challenging.

Which brings us to securing these smarter IOT devices. It’s no longer just about email and passwords or social security numbers. We have had Identity and management (IAM) and private key tokens and PKI for years. We’ve had encryption. Access and policy controls have existed and been built into hardware and software for quite some time.

The old security patterns concentrated on users and their access to a database or api or a front door. Now it’s machines and edge devices and sensors and stickers and gateways and cities and data plus human and non human users. And machines accessing other machines with no need for human intervention.

What about complicated identity management and access patterns where Multiple users or multiple devices connect to many others or one to many or many to one or many to many ? It’s far more open. Far more insecure. Far more identity of things and not just the internet of things.

What is important in IDOT? It’s the things. It’s their relationships with other things. One concept is to borrow from the old asset management systems like a Software asset management (SAM) tool or package.

SAM software enables cost control and optimization for various kinds of software investments companies or organizations make. Many large corporations spend millions and millions of dollars on software licenses. And many times things get lost when it’s a global fortune 1000 company. So if you look at it in a similar mindset , companies, cities , government organizations may have thousands of connected devices that need to be secured , maintained , updated, tracked , etc. It’s almost like an inventory management system really with automation , advanced analytics, and kpis.

As time moves forward , the world will rely on their inventory of connected things or devices, and customers or citizens or leads will interact with said devices and connected data.

It’s a secured Identity of connected Things inventory management system. On the blockchain. What a concept.

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Following a successful pilot of its blockchain-powered eB/Ls platform that lasted for over a year, the shipping firm ( Zim) has claimed that blockchain can not only replace the currently existing paper-based processes, but also improve the workflow conducted via email, fax, and other channels.

Supply chain and shipping containers on Blockchain are ideal scenarios. The wonder is how to secure and solve the IOT and sensor and automation problem. RFIDs May help , but from end to end tracking and transparency is the real key.

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Smart farming on Blockchain

The idea of bringing community back to farming is an interesting concept. Shop and buy local has been a trademark in certain communities spawned by the backlash against a Walmart or other big box franchise stores. Cities like Greenville, SC are already trying to foster a better localized community and startup incubator.

Smart cities and the Internet of things isn’t new. Still a work in progress though and a long way to go . But how can these small Local farms flip the script and change into a more successful community of local farmers. A Community that thrives and grows.

Smart farming is a pie in the sky dream or a realistic endeavor ? Is it organic or raw or not ? Did they use Monsanto seeds or not ? How do they distribute to the next town over? And earn income ? How do they better market, farmers markets ? How do they turn communities with limited access to fruits and vegetables and healthier food into a smorgasbord of red, greens, blues , oranges and yellows ? And how can it all be transparent and immutable ? And smarter ? And affordable?

Smarter farming. Let Pagarba show you how.

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Hyperledger has added a lot of partners to their community. But what does that really mean ? Some company paid $25k and up to market the logo? That’s the challenge with alliances and partnerships. Most have little to no real value on either end.

Hyperledger Ursa will act as a repository of “trusted” cryptographic implementations, aimed to make it easier for blockchain developers within its community and the wider open-source space to avoid duplication of development efforts.

The library will lead to simpler project maintenance and cut down on bugs, Hyperledger said, with most or all of the crypto code being kept in a single location and reviewed by security experts – including developers who work on Hyperledger’s Indy, Sawtooth and Fabric projects, as well as cryptographers with academic backgrounds.

“Our goal in creating Ursa is to combine the efforts of all the security and cryptography experts in the Hyperledger community and move all of the projects forward,” Hyperledger said. “

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