Today on Bitcoin This Week we discuss the implementation of blockchain technology to pilot unmanned aircraft, we comment on BlackRock and their stand on the cryptocurrency market and more.
Blockchain Startup Receives $1 Million Grant
A blockchain startup in the United States has been awarded a grant of just under $1 million to assist its efforts to establish a decentralized energy grid. Grid7, a Colorado-based startup had previously been awarded $150,000 from the US Department of Energy. Grid7 aims to use a decentralized system to promote energy efficiency, while also protecting the network against cyber attacks.
In recent months Colorado has adopted a blockchain friendly approach to business and civic life, which has seen the State legislate for the introduction of a blockchain based system for data collection and maintenance which, it hopes, will deliver a higher level of data security for its citizens.
IBM And Columbia University To Launch Blockchain Center
Staying in the United States, tech-giant IBM revealed this week that it has partnered with Columbia University to launch a center dedicated to the research and development of blockchain technology. The Columbia-IBM Center for Blockchain and Data Transparency will “combine cross-disciplinary teams from the academic, scientific, business and government communities to explore key issues related to the policy, trust, sharing and consumption of digital data when using blockchain and other privacy-preserving technologies.”
As well as developing new blockchain systems, the Center will advise startups on how to get the most out of the new technology. Launching the new Center, Columbia’s John Coatsworth said he believed that significant advances in scholarship and applications of data-sharing and data-transparency technologies would emerge through this partnership.
Boeing To Use Blockchain To Pilot Unmanned Aircraft
IBM isn’t the only giant corporation making moves in the blockchain sphere. This week saw two announcements that provide further evidence of the technology’s exciting potential.
It may sound like science fiction, but Boeing announced this week that it had partnered with AI leader, SparkCognition to deliver unmanned aircraft systems. The two companies plan to use artificial intelligence and blockchain technologies to track unmanned aircraft in flight and allocate traffic corridors and routes to ensure safe, secure transportation.
Amir Husain, founder and CEO of SparkCognition described the partnership as a “monumental opportunity” which will, he hopes, draw on Boeing’s “unparalleled experience in safety, innovation, scale, and reliability” to deliver aerial travel that would have been unimaginable only a few years ago.
Meanwhile, US computer multinational Oracle released its Blockchain Cloud Service this week following a successful trial period. The Service provides customers with a development platform to build their own networks, and to quickly integrate with Oracle SaaS and third-party applications they already use, as well as other blockchain networks.
Asset Management Giant Examining Blockchain
As if that wasn’t enough to keep blockchain baters quiet for another week, one company that has been very critical of Bitcoin in the past appears to have done an about turn. BlackRock, one of the world’s leading asset management companies, is reported to be examining ways it can take advantage of the cryptocurrency market. The news was reported by Financial News London and may have been one of the factors behind Bitcoins price surge at the start of the week.
CEO Larry Fink was keeping his cards close to his chest, however, telling Reuters that a working group had been formed to examine blockchain but that he failed to see any big demand for cryptocurrencies. Despite these mixed messages, Bitcoin gained significantly following the report, although its value doesn’t always follow the same logic as that of more traditional assets
Bull Making A Return?
Sticking with the Bitcoin Market, it’s been quite a week so far, with the crypto gaining more than a thousand dollars over two manic days. Opening Monday at a modest $6357, a $400 gain over a period of two hours saw it close at $6741. Tuesday was even better, crashing through the $7000 mark before closing at $7321. And Bitcoin wasn’t finished climbing. By Wednesday analysts were talking about the bull being back as it headed towards the $7500 as market closing approached. To see current prices click here.