Ethereum - a smart contracts platform


Published 11 months ago

Ethereum (ETH) is the second most popular cryptocurrency after Bitcoin at the moment with a capitalization of $35 billion. Its popularity is due to the fact that Ethereum is also a platform. Like Bitcoin, Ethereum is also built on top of Blockchain technology but with some additional features. One of the most important features which can be built on Ethereum platform are Smart Contracts. Smart Contracts are just like contracts in the real world and the difference is that they are completely digital. At its core, a Smart Contract is a computer program that is stored on the blockchain. And because they are stored on the blockchain they are public and immutable which means that everyone can see the contract and that nobody can make changes to the contract, thus excluding the need for a middleman, for example, a lawyer.

Adoption of the smart contracts represents the next step of the development and implementation of the Blockchain technology. Bitcoin community and other projects have their own plans to implement smart contracts but Ethereum is the leader in this space. Most of the ICOs (Initial Coin Offerings) these days are started through Ethereum smart contracts. ICO is much like a startup taking advantage of public crowdfunding by implementing a smart contract. This technology is still relatively young but the potential is huge. In future, we see businesses employing smart contracts to build their partnership avoiding third-party lawyers.

Anybody can publish their own smart contract on Ethereum platform. This is convenient for small startups to find investments through crowdfunding. All you need to do is write a computer program and deploy on the Ethrereum platform. Ethereum community developed a programming language called Solidity for writing smart contracts. This language is similar to Javascript, easy to write but still, you need a good specialist for deploying your code because there are some cases where smart contracts got hacked.THere are already best practices, libraries, and standards like ERC20 which helps developers build secure and reliable smart contracts.

Even though Ethereum is in a nascent stage this platform has huge potential to change many industries like government, banks, businesses, insurance companies, commerce, trading and others.