Blockchain: Self-Asserted Identity : Hammer: Command Hang Strip

You know those people who think a hammer solves everything?  Or, they think they are the hammer and everything is a nail?  Although the traditional curved-claw hammer is a great tool that can very successfully propel a nail into many objects, you don’t always need a hammer to do a job, and frequently other tools may be more appropriate to achieve the desired end result.  In reality, there are a wide array of tools that can be used to achieve similar results.  Sometimes you need a nail set for that last finish nail.  Or, you actually need to use the Phillips-Head screwdriver to secure the boards together.  But more often than not, the Command™ Picture Hanging Strips work just fine to display that piece of artwork.

Blockchain is a comparable analogy.  Blockchain is a very intriguing technological solution for demonstrating particular types of transactions.  There are an increasing number of use cases for which blockchain is being explored that range from the desire to increase security to alternative identity-proofing techniques.  Sectors considering the solution span everything from the financial sector to healthcare to government agencies.  However, blockchain is not the perfect solution for every transaction.  And, no – I’m not anti-blockchain. What I am is a tried and true practitioner – with a touch of nerd thrown in.  I’ve assessed privacy implications of blockchain, specifically focusing on the identity-on-the-chain paradox.  There are good uses of blockchain.  But blockchain is the not the magic bullet, the amazing tonic that cures all ails or the amazing hammer that makes everything the round-head nail.  Advances in Cryptography range from innovative uses of ring signatures to TLS 1.3; double- (and the elusive triple-) blind proofing solutions are becoming more common; federation continues to deliver on many identity ecosystem requirements; and good old-fashioned self-asserted identity does still actually satisfy a wide array of online transactions.  Blockchain has its place, but does not need to be used every time to get the job done.

As a child of a contractor who built many houses, I can comfortably say that no, a hammer does not fix every issue around the house (as much fun as it is to swing said hammer around every so often.)  Just as incredible as blockchain may be in certain use cases, there are many other security controls, authentication protocols and identity proofing events that continue to be more valuable in the marketplace (while providing a lower technology entry barrier.)

Reach out to me at to find out how Kuma can help you determine when to consider blockchain technology as a solution…or if you’d like to hear more about my adventures-gone-sideways one Saturday with a nail gun and a second story porch addition!

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