Q&A with CEO of ChromaWay: What is Relational Blockchain?


So Henrik, we met today to talk about Blockchain, so tell me what Relational Blockchain is? Well, to be honest, it’s two words ‘relational’ and ‘blockchain’. So, ‘relational’ comes from a relational database and ‘blockchain’ comes from blockchain. So relational database is, you know, you’re probably most used to the name SQL database. It’s based on theory made, a mathematical theory and and the paper done in the 70s from a guy with the last name Codd that made a solution for large-scale data banks. So he presented a way to structure data, so it can be easily retrieved based on Mathematics, basically, you know, normal logic. A similar system based on Mathematics to structure data in order to not have duplicate data, etc. There was the thing before data base and that was basically file system, you know. There was a problem to search for data inside an organization and you need to solve that. How should we structure data in a good way? So, he came up with this model just in the scientific paper. Then not much happened. IBM tried to do a prototype and no one really cared, I think. Then late 70s Oracle actually did an implementation of this in an SQL database and after that, or at the similar time there were different implementations of this kind of, yeah, relational model interpreted as SQL. A solution to search for data and to structure data in a way that’s attractive for keeping a central data store. Yeah, late 70s to now that’s quite a long time but I would say that the SQL database is like IBM Db2, Microsoft SQL Server, Oracle, Postgres if we’re talking open source: MySQL, MariaDB. All these have quite a dominant position in the way to structure data inside an enterprise. Now there is a move to do no SQL, to take it one step back, but still it’s a very good way to structure information. So, but that’s the core, so, having the same kind of way to structure data’s being used in all the enterprise’s across the world. Their scale model and combining that with blockchain. So, blockchain is basically inspired by bitcoin, it’s a movement to make decentralized handling of data, getting rid of a central party being in control of data so you can use it for a private and public function, but still, of course, by having history that cannot be changed, governance that is not controlled by a single party. So, that’s another movement and they haven’t really met before. So, that’s why we, basically, that’s what we call a relational blockchain, this combination. Because if you look at the blockchain that’s kind of a primitive data structure, it’s intended to be, you know, starting for bitcoins so, basically, linked list of transactions. The problem is when – when you want to search for information it’s quite hard, you need to know, how much money did I send to that particular person in this particular time period. It starts to get difficult to analyze and find that. You need to code your own loops, to search for information and stuff like that. That’s something that, you know, relational databases have solved already. It’s basically the go-to way to structure data in order to have it easy to retrieve and also being used by different applications not so if you’re looking at the big cooperation. I have a central data store and it’s not only one application that is reading this data. It’s several applications working on the same data sets. It’s a good model that you shouldn’t just throw away. So, our idea is to combine the relational database model with the blockchain model, so that’s, basically, what I call a relational blockchain.

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