Blockchain-based networks are rapidly emerging as an element of digital life as advancements in cross-industry innovation continue to take shape. This new generation of transactional applications, which embody trust, accountability and transparency, is ushering in a new normal of streamlined business processes and productivity efficiencies.
At the forefront of these efforts is the San Francisco–based Linux Foundation, which in 2015 created the Hyperledger Project. The objective of this initiative is the advancement of cross-industry collaboration through the development of blockchains and distributed ledgers.
Akin to an operating network for marketplaces, the work being curated in this area aims to improve the performance and reliability of systems that support global business transactions within finance, banking, supply chains, manufacturing, healthcare and a score of other industry niches.
In 2016, Hyperledger began accepting proposals for codebase incubation and other core element technologies. And on July 11, the project announced its production-ready Hyperledger Fabric 1.0, the next iteration of progress for its community of software developers in their ongoing efforts to establish a new frontier for blockchain frameworks and platforms.
Fostering the Integration of Ledger Systems
Many of today’s transactional ledger systems are siloed and disconnected. While value transfers are relatively easy in one country, or where senders and recipients have accounts on a common network or ledger, sending value to those on different networks or ledgers has proven to be challenging and complex. Moreover, these connection rails often require manual use and are slow and expensive.
In an effort to address these issues, Hyperledger has recently launched another project called “Hyperledger Quilt” that’s tethered to the Interledger protocol.
Known as “ILP,” Interledger is a protocol that allows for the efficient delivery of transactions across ledgers. Protocol standards and specifications that are consistent with World Wide Consortium guidelines are thereby being procured by the open-source community.
Hyperledger Quilt represents a Java-centric, enterprise-level deployment of the protocol. It provides libraries and reference implementation of the core Interledger elements as well as in-time ledger integrations for myriad other Hyperledger projects.
The broader purpose here is to fuel interoperability among ledger systems by implementing ILP, which has primary use as a payments protocol for value transfers across systems — both of the distributed and non-distributed ledger variety. This protocol has the added benefit of establishing a global account namespace in addition to functioning as a protocol for synchronized atomic swaps between various systems.
Quilt’s interoperability solution is seen as the next phase of Hyperledger’s roadmap of business blockchain technology initiatives involving distributed ledger frameworks, smart contract engines, client libraries, graphical interfaces, utility libraries and sample applications. Via the Interledger protocol, Quilt strives to deliver rules, standards and use cases for interoperability-based transactions.
The launch of Quilt is viewed as a promising development for the Hyperledger community. Developers are encouraged to participate in this ambitious endeavor via GitHub, Rocket.Chat, Wiki or through its mailing list. Hyperledger’s ongoing project development can be followed on its website as well as on Twitter.
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