“Yes, blockchain has already exceeded the hype, but that does not mean that the technology is no longer attractive. We are now on the plateau of productivity and we have understood what the blockchain can and cannot do,” explains Björn Obermeier. The Principal Director Blockchain & Multipart Systems is a proven blockchain expert and has been working intensively on the topic of blockchain for almost eight years. In our new episode of the podcast format “IDG Tech Talk”, Obermeier explains in which direction the blockchain is developing and where it has already established itself:
The blockchain expert can look back on 18 years of industry experience and is an avowed technology fan. He started his first steps in the IT world with a Commodore C64, in order to then work his way through the various Pentium generations and from Windows 95 to Win10 to blockchain and multiparty systems. “I love technology”, confesses Obermeier. Despite all the enthusiasm, he never forgets to just ask what we can do with a technology, but always keeps an eye on its benefits – what can a technology do for us?
Accordingly, he seeks contact with people who want to change the status quo and would like to find out how to sustainably improve existing ecosystems in order to change the way we work and our lives.
“Blockchain is a team sport,” said the expert in the IDG Tech Talk, where it is important to find the right partners who can draw mutual added value from the solution. In an interview, he warns against using blockchain only for the sake of technology, “if you start a project that already implies blockchain as a technical solution, it will not scale.” He strongly recommends questioning whether the problem to be addressed can really only be solved with a blockchain or whether other approaches – such as confidential compute – are more productive. Basically, it should be borne in mind that the blockchain in the enterprise area is a complementary technology that is added to existing IT system landscapes as a kind of trust layer. “The blockchain does not replace databases or other technologies, but is really complementary,” emphasizes Obermeier.
But what is the blockchain used for and is the technology already mature? For Obermeier, the considerations of the banks prove that the blockchain has already outgrown its infancy and is already mature: They want to use the blockchain to implement digital central bank money – a solution that has a high risk assessment and must absolutely scale. Another lighthouse project for him is traveling in Corona times: In the foreseeable future, this will only be possible with digital proof of identity linked to vaccination confirmations or negative test results – realized through a combination of blockchain and biometrics.
In the IDG Tech Talk, blockchain expert Obermeier dares a look into the crystal ball for us: Where is the blockchain journey going? The technology fan can well imagine that the blockchain and other distributed ledger technologies will develop into a kind of protocol – i.e. a trust protocol or an Internet of trust. In the best case scenario, as users and citizens, we would not even notice the use of these technologies, but at the same time we would regain sovereignty over our data because we would know who is doing what with it. In his eyes, the blockchain debate will get a boost with the topic of digital central bank money, the introduction of programmable money. And last but not least, Obermeier sees in the crystal ball a possible convergence of the three areas of financial services (digital money), digital identity and supply chain.