Greetings. Before getting into this month’s topic, there is important news on how I will share this update going forward. Next month I will only post the update on my blog https://vscarbro.wordpress.com/. This is the last update I will send out to your email address. This will enable me to meet the new privacy rules while at the same time still highlighting new technologies and resources for the academic community. If you elect to follow my blog you will be notified when a new update is posted.
Speaking of a new way of communicating that leads us into this month’s topic of blockchain. There are four characteristics the define a blockchain network. Below is a chart with characteristics listed and defined. This is a good point of reference to explain blockchain when asked what is “blockchain”. Next, in addition to the basic understanding of a blockchain network the Blockchain for Dummies ebook where the chart with the four characteristics is outlined gives readers a chance to become active in setting up their own test blockchain with the instructions provided in this book:
At recent conferences this Blockchain for Dummies book has gone fast. I often suggest that the book download is a good way to learn about blockchain as well as share the book with others freely (and for free): https://www-01.ibm.com/common/ssi/cgi-bin/ssialias?htmlfid=XIM12354USEN. This is the excerpt from the book that provides a good foundation to begin understanding and explaining the value of blockchain technology:
Blockchain Essentials Course
While the book is good to share, there is a Blockchain Essentials course I recommend as a even both investment of two hours for anyone wanting a basic understanding of blockchain. This course includes good brief videos explaining blockchain as well as an lab to implement a basic blockchain along with badge credentials when you pass the course imbedded blockchain test–all in less than two hours:
IBM Institute for Business Value Blockchain Studies
One of the best parts about today’s blockchain discussions is how it quickly it merges the business and technology discussion. Blockchain becomes extremely powerful when ecosystem partners begin the dialogue on how they can change the customer experience with blockchain. The IBM Institute for Business Value Studies can be used in the classroom to get faculty and students engaged in what has already been proven with blockchain. Academia working with industry can help establish new chain or paths for how blockchain changes how we conduct “business” as well as create new businesses.
IBM Redbooks on Blockchain
As businesses are investing what blockchain could mean to their bottom line, there are several sources that can be used to go further into what blockchain is doing and has the potential to do to change the way transactions are conducted. The Redbooks provide an excellent free source for professional expertise that has been validated by the authors of the text (again for free).
Developing a Blockchain Business Network with Hyperledger Composer using the IBM Blockchain Platform Starter Plan
14 May 2018, Redpapers … Blockchain has emerged as a disruptive technology in the areas of trading assets and sharing information. It has the capability to transform many industries, professions, and aspects of life.
Zero to Blockchain
17 Nov 2017, Courses … Learn how to develop blockchain solutions using Hyperledger Composer on Hyperledger Fabric Version 1.0+. This 15 chapter tutorial takes you from no experience to building a complete blockchain.
IBM Academic Initiative Blockchain Resources
IBM Skills Academy New Blockchain Course in Pilot
As the IBM Skills Academy continues to expand with critical new technologies, we are introducing a Blockchain path this summer. This new IBM Skills Academy skills path is in pilot with several schools. This enables faculty who want to be able to provide blockchain skills to their student to be trained and able to have students engaged doing labs blockchain in the cloud in a few months. Here is an example of two weeks from a sample thirteen week schedule:
If you are interested in learning more on the pilot and when we will make it available, there is not website I can refer you to a this point but reach out to me directly for further discussion.
IBM Academic Initiative Free Academic Blockchain Resources
The IBM Academic Initiative continues to be the main starting point in IBM for free resources to be used for teaching, learning and non-commercial research. If you have 2:34 minutes this video can get you started with sandbox, beta programs and more https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zsubZGAOWMw include these Blockchain on-hands on resources:
As more industries are looking for blockchain expertise, universities and community college have a great opportunity to lead collaboration around blockchain. The above combination of business and academic assets around blockchain provides a starting point. The goal is for faculty and a cross disciplinary campus of students to gain new skills and in this case blockchain skill demand is exponential. Here is an example of how one such skill can make a difference across the computer science and information technology fields but it also has a big impact across fields that are becoming more dependent on technology but in areas not necessarily considered IT fields:https://www.burning-glass.com/blog/investing-your-skills-impact-one-additional-skill-can-have-your-paycheck/
Once your students complete the above, you might find this a interesting next step for those with those new and growing blockchain skills: https://www.computerworlduk.com/careers/how-get-job-as-blockchain-developer-3640764/
For years the discussion on how critical it is to have business and IT skills as part of a professional profile has be championed. New technologies are expecting that combination is the foundation of professionals today. The good news we already have faculty and students who saw the value to the market and who are making it happen across campus’s and businesses today.
Well done businology leaders!
LinkedIn: Valinda Kennedy