2020 in big data and IoT: keep a close eye on Bitcoin SV

Bitcoin BSV is the blockchain for big data and enterprise. Predictions from people in the know say we’ll be hearing a lot more about this in 2021. Let’s take a look at why, and also some of the projects that pioneered the concept in 2020.

Demand for auditable data storage, issues over ownership, plus a proliferation of big data applications and internet of things (IoT) devices will all play their part. On BSV’s side in 2021 there’s full release of the big data-oriented Teranode protocol software, ever-decreasing fees that allow “nanotransactions,” and a drive to bring large projects onboard. As a bonus, important BSV stakeholders like nChain hold many of the patents relevant to IoT/blockchain integration.

Dr. Craig Wright described back in February 2019 how tiny, simple IoT devices could communicate with the Bitcoin blockchain, using a device-agnostic interface that didn’t require the devices themselves to store instructions or large amounts of data. Once transmitted via the interface, the information they gathered would be processed as Bitcoin transactions and stored on the blockchain for verification at any later date. He predicted there could be 50 billion of these IoT devices active by 2024—and businesses and projects alike will need a way to process and store all the data they provide.

Teranode is coming

Teranode, developed by nChain for Bitcoin Association, is set to release a beta version in the first half of 2021. Designed to be an enterprise-grade implementation of the Bitcoin protocol that can scale to millions of transactions per second, it will run parallel to—but eventually replace—the current Bitcoin SV Node software.

Project lead Steve Shadders has said Teranode is such a significant leap that it will give “birth to a new profession of Teranode operators.” Initially, it will undergo throughput testing on its own version of the scaling test network and then progress to at a least a year long period of proving consensus compatibility with Bitcoin SV before the transition process begins in earnest.

Once consensus compatibility is assured, Teranode will replace Bitcoin SV Node as the latter reaches its architectural limits. That said, Shadders also noted that there are several Teranode components that can be backported into Bitcoin SV Node, which could still get 100x more performance and gives us a comfortable window to ensure a safe transition.

nChain’s Daniel Connolly has described it as a “re-architecting” of the node and “a re-design from first principals of the Bitcoin node software, taking full advantage of modern design paradigms and incorporating all the knowledge we’ve gained about Bitcoin over the last 11 years.”

Teranode will be made available for free usage on the Bitcoin SV blockchain, under the Open BSV license.

2020’s big data pioneers: EHR Data

EHR Data was one of the first companies to join BSV, with the goal of improving human health by changing the way patient data is processed, stored, owned, and even sold. It’s currently working on a proof of concept model designed to help curb America’s “opioid epidemic” by tracking prescriptions and patients treated. Privacy and data ownership are also important to the project and EHR Data’s vision. The company sees a future where there are fewer information silos but also a greater ability to share it to relevant parties. Patients would own and control their own records, which they could sell for royalties to researchers if desired, or allow insurance companies to access their files for possible discounts.

Transmira and Omniscape: kick-starting the Metaverse

“Location is the new domain name,” says Transmira when describing their virtual/alternate reality (VR/AR) hybrid Omniscape, or the “XR Metaverse.” “XR” stands for “Experiential Reality” and Omniscape’s first incarnation is a marketing platform with location-based branded AR content and virtual goods for users to pick up. Its ultimate ambition is to build something more akin to Neal Stephenson’s Metaverse or the OASIS of “Ready Player One,” but it’s smaller steps first.

Transmira demonstrated the concept at CoinGeek Live in October, with users at the conference (and stuck in their houses) using their mobile phones to look around the room for floating, clickable tokens that downloaded into their BSV wallets. The company, which received an investment from Ayre Group Ventures in December 2020, is expanding that concept with new data functions and better data management capabilities, using (naturally) BSV’s tokenization and micropayment capabilities.

IoT device data streams: UNISOT and MetaStreme

Remember those tiny IoT data-gathering devices Dr. Craig Wright mentioned? Two of BSV’s flagship projects are already using them to process information on the Bitcoin blockchain.

Some projections estimate the value of IoT in the food supply chain will grow from US$14 billion in 2020 to $25 billion in 2025. The aim is to benefit producers, distributors and consumers alike by tracking the progress of any food product from origin to plate—making the entire process more trustworthy, and gathering data to help it run more efficiently.

UNISOT’s SeafoodChain is the first project to demonstrate how this could work, tracking seafood products using QR codes, scanners and sensors in packaging along the entire process. SeafoodChain is designed to integrate with existing ERP systems used by supply chain participants, and to upload and store all its data in a verifiable way on the blockchain. At the end of the line, consumers can check the provenance and safety of the food they’re eating with the consumer version of UNISOT’s app. UNISOT launched a pilot program to test its system in May 2020.

In a similar vein, MetaStreme is a big data company that has created an interface for IoT devices to communicate with the BSV network, turning their data streams into processable Bitcoin transactions without the device users needing to know anything about Bitcoin.

MetaStreme has partnered with sustainability project Predict Ecology to monitor the delicate ecosystem in Australia’s tropical north. This includes mounting multi-spectral sensors on UAVs, remote cameras, sound recorders, and an AI engine to monitor “species level carbon sequestration and diversity”, fauna biodiversity, and water quality.

None of these projects would be possible on a blockchain without the ability to massively scale, or fees low enough to make the billions of transactions they produce affordable. Bitcoin BSV can not only handle large volumes already, it’s set to increase its capacity and speed in 2021 and every year beyond. The more large-scale, novel and beneficial projects that come onboard, the more trust in BSV and its capabilities will become known. Data will be one of the future’s most valuable resources, and BSV is the way to turn that resource into value.

See also: CoinGeek Live presentation, Internet of Things & Big Data on the Bitcoin SV Blockchain

New to Bitcoin? Check out CoinGeek’s Bitcoin for Beginners section, the ultimate resource guide to learn more about Bitcoin—as originally envisioned by Satoshi Nakamoto—and blockchain.