Emerging technologies are always subject to ebbs and flows of hype, and in the last year it's been impossible to escape the excitement swirling around blockchain.
Blockchain is perhaps best known as the technology that underpins cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin. Blockchains store data across 'blocks' rather than on one central server, with new information only being entered into the 'chain' once a cryptographic key has been solved by a computer. For this reason blockchain is also known as distributed ledger technology (DLT). Information on the blockchain cannot be erased, meaning it offers a definitive record of digital events.
A growing number of startups are exploring how to harness the power of blockchain technology for a plethora of different purposes.