Immutability As a Service on the Steem Blockchain

in steemleo •  3 years ago 

Immutability as a service on the steem blockchain.png

Immutability is one of the fundamental ideals of blockchain technology. One of the many reasons why Bitcoin was created in 2009 by Satoshi Nakamoto was for the advancement of a technology that could provide immutability as a service to people around the globe.

With Bitcoin, anyone can import data to the Bitcoin blockchain and record it in the immutable history of the blockchain for the cost of 1 transaction fee. This is immutability as a service.

Many people here on Steem wonder why this blockchain has any value. Why would anyone use it and why would the base currency — STEEM — gain any value in the long-term?

Immutability as a service is one of the many things that I believe will give STEEM value now and in the future. But STEEM has no transaction fees… how does it offer immutability as a service if it doesn’t charge anything for that service in the way that the BTC blockchain charges users a tx fee?

Firstly, anyone who wants to use the Steem blockchain to import data must have a Steem account. Once they have a Steem account, they must have the necessary amount of resource credits to make a transaction and upload their data to the immutable blockchain.

As of this writing, resource credits (RCs) come from two places:

  1. Having STEEM vested in your account (STEEM POWER)
  2. Leasing vested STEEM from another user (delegated STEEM POWER)

In a future network upgrade, we can expect resource credit pools to offer a 3rd option to this list in the form of renting RCs from large SP holders without renting the vested stake itself. For now, I’ll focus on what’s available.

The amount of RCs you need to upload your data to the blockchain depends on a few factors:

  1. What kind of data do you want to upload?
  2. How much data do you want to upload?
  3. How frequently do you want to upload data?

Customers of Immutability as a Service

There are different “customers” who use immutability as a service on the Steem blockchain.

  1. Content creators upload written content to the blockchain to store it immutably and censorship-free
  2. Investors upload STEEM (or any STEEM-based token) transaction data to keep a ledger of their holdings
  3. Businesses may have a variety of reasons for wanting to store data on the blockchain — one of my favorite use cases is @splinterlands. They store cards on the blockchain in the form of NFTs, battle history is also stored, pack transactions, community contests and more
  4. Communities also may have a variety of reasons for wanting to store data on the blockchain. Namely, tokenizing their project and using the blockchain as a ledger to store tx data and the amount of tokens that investors are hodling. Another common use case is keeping records of content that is uploaded to the blockchain and even using filtering mechanisms (i.e. scotbot) to parse the data that is relevant to their niche

These are just the use cases that are at the top of my mind. There are many more that exist now and way more that will exist in the future as the blockchain matures and more innovation occurs. 99% of what exists on Steem today was not in the original vision for this blockchain. That is the fascinating aspect of open-source, global technology — you never know what it’s going to be used for once it gets into the hands of the crowd.

To answer the original question, the value of STEEM is driven by many factors. If you imagine that this blockchain will grow in the number of “customers” in the 4 categories I laid out above, then you can imagine the growing demand for Resource Credits in exchange for immutability as a service.

Right now, users often by at least a small amount of SP to transact — be it 15, 25 or 50 SP — but in the future, I imagine that SP will be held by large businesses, communities and investors who will hen either lease out their excess resource credits or create their own internal resource credit pools for their user base to interact with the blockchain.

Something like SteemLeo, for example, would hold a large amount of SP and allow it’s resource credit pool to be available to financial content creators, LEO token investors, etc. to transact with the underlying Steem blockchain and use it to store data immutably.

Digital immutability is still a nascent technology. We are just at the cusp of what is possible and we are just getting started. As time passes, immutability will become more and more valuable to people from all walks of life and the technology will continually evolve to be easier and easier to use.

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Contemporaneously recorded notes signed on a blockchain like Steem will make their way into a high profile court case soon. Slowly understanding will expand beyond limited crypto circles.

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This is very well said. One thing I think it's important to highlight is that while most blockchains provide this immutability service, Steem is SO much easier to use, since it's specifically built for that use case - storing text content immutably on the chain. That's the big advantage Steem has and I really hope we can get that message out before others come along and copy what we're doing and market it better.

100% agree. Immutability is built into most blockchains, but Steem is by far the easiest to use. We've been sitting on this massive winner, yet most of the world has no idea that it exists.

Well this is the prior function to the blockchain if you look in a broader sense :)
Now we need just businesses to take advantage of it.

Yep, this is exactly what Steem was built for yet nobody knows about it! The message needs to get out into the world

  ·  3 years ago (Edited)

I agree. Immutability as a service will be in the background and front ends will adopt standards to hide content not belonging to that front end.

So accounts can store virtually anything, keep track of operations by using custom JSON ops without that data being seen on Steemit.

Right now, Steemit is more like a block explorer, showing us everything, but in time standards will be adopted to filter data better.

Imagine a public organization using the Steem blockchain to store minutes for example. Or saving public agreements/contracts from all over the world.

Endless possibilities.

This is great. The idea of Steemit being a block explorer is so true. If Steemit, Inc. steps up their game, they can provide a much better UX. What I'm coming to realize is that Steemit's front end development is horrifyingly bad. I don't see them doing anything to make this much better in the near-term. Thats why using other front ends (like SteemLeo) will become ever more important going forward as a filtering mechanism

It will be nice if Steem ever does an upgrade like EOS did where Steem Monsters can basically just provide the RC for all accounts that are created.

I think this is a must for all future dapps in it will assist in almost instant sign ups (with something like email approval), and then maybe once you play x games you can use DEC to upgrade to a "full service" account with SP/RC of your own.

We can already provide the RC by delegating Steem Power to accounts that play the game (which we do), and this will get much easier and more efficient with the introduction of RC delegation pools in the future.

We are also currently working on pretty much exactly what you said right now - allowing people to sign up with a regular email address and password combination and then upgrade to a "full" account by purchasing the starter set.

Very cool thanks for sharing!

Yes! I heard you talk about this on @exyle's show. It's amazing that you've built an automated system to handle the RC issue.

Would love to have the capability of signing people up with an email address/password on SteemLeo and then make it easy for them to upgrade to a "full" account in some way. i.e. using earned LEO + STEEM from commenting through an "escrow" account to create a full one. Or just giving them a free account after they've made 3 comments + prove their humanity or something along those lines.

YES, yes, and yes,
Thank you for this.

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