Blockchain and Smart Contracts

At the recent AICPA Item Development Meeting in Fort Lauderdale, I gave a presentation on Blockchain to the AICPA members there. Blockchain is an exciting technology that will dramatically change the way business is conducted. Blockchain is a DLT (distributed ledger technology), a shared platform, for recording transactions and tracking assets. It is a transactional platform enabling other technologies such as AI (artificial intelligence) virtual reality, 3D printing and robotics to be part of the economy. As Don Tapscott, coauthor of Blockchain Revolution wrote “The internet of everything needs a ledger of everything for it to work.”     An exciting feature of Blockchain is “smart contracts”. These are self-executing contracts. The terms of the agreement are written directly into lines of code and subsequently executed in accordance with the terms. Logistics and supply chain are a perfect application for smart contracts. Blockchain and the applications that run on it will simplify complex multi-party systems while reducing fraud and theft, making logistics much more efficient. It can be argued that widespread usage of Blockchain and its applications are still some distance away, but that horizon is getting closer and the CPA’s at the meeting agreed that now is the time to start planning.

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