White Paper

Code Free – Distributed App Development platform

Abstract

Digital leaders understand that simply implementing certain technologies isn’t going to be enough to succeed in a world that is transforming every day. To thrive on the change around us, we must view “digital” as a comprehensive shift that touches every aspect of the business. To guide your path forward, Bloxian Technology experiments on digital blockchain platform and shares how industries are capitalizing on digital opportunities.

At BloxianTechnology, we recognize how a Blockchain platform for experimentation can provide enterprises the much-needed capability to test and validate Blockchain use cases rapidly. Blox provides a code free platform that can act as an experimentation sandbox to quickly set-up any type of Blockchain network, build distributed Blockchain applications and connect them to an existing IT ecosystem through several out of the box connectors.

Introduction

Disrupt or be disrupted is the norm today. The major cause of disruption is the rapid emergence of new technologies that enable new business models with rapidly declining costs. Large enterprises are especially vulnerable to disruption as they tend to respond to the market changes at a slower pace. Creative destruction is cited as the reason to stay in the market & sustain pressure to compete in emerging market balancing – Cost, operability, production & innovation.

It is also forecasted that the average lifespan of companies in S&P 500 will shrink to 14 years in 2026, from 33 years in 1965.

This is because, the enterprises are under the pressure to compete with the innovative players, the likes of Google and Amazon, who have honed their skills to learn and test the latest technologies to deliver the best customer experiences. However, most of the large enterprises are focused on running their business and have no clue where to start, what to do and how to implement technologies that will ensure them to remain relevant in their industry. Blockchain is one of the technologies that poses this challenge large enterprises across multiple industries.

A recent global survey of more than 2,200 executives shows that Digital IQ scores have stagnated for almost the last 10 years. The main reason for this fall is merging the latest technologies with the existing legacy or digital systems which are running on multiple platforms. Introducing one new system goes through a lot of evaluations within the enterprise which is really a time-consuming process which may affect them in winning the race of digital transformation.

http://www.aei.org/publication/fortune-500-firms-1955-v-2016-only-12-remain-thanks-to-the-creative-destruction- that-fuels-economic-prosperity/
https://www.innosight.com/insight/creative-destruction/

Today, Experimentation and iteration is the methodology is the preferred method of product development for most of the innovative companies in Silicon Valley. Bloxian Technology recognizes the need and has been investing huge by experimenting at its innovative labs, customers and within partners network.

While experimenting with emerging technologies, the most efficient way is to identify and leverage the existing knowledge rather than starting from scratch. Exactly this is how “Blox” evolved. Blox is a code free Blockchain application development platform that provides enterprises an opportunity to whip up quick experiments to validate ideas.

This white paper explains the problems that the enterprises have and the need for a platform which offers the ability to quickly turnaround any proof of concept on the emerging technologies. It also explains how this platform’s architecture allows the enterprise to pick the technology that they want to experiment and play with it by creating code free applications. It also explicitly states the potential role of this platform within an enterprise and the benefits it can bring.

Background / Problem Statement

To keep up with emerging disruptive players, it's a necessity to keep up with emerging technologies as they have staying power over the economy. Some of these technologies are making progress now but some may take a decade or more. Today, more than half of the organizations are currently undergoing large scale IT transformation leading to widespread investigation, planning and roll out of emerging technologies.

At CIO level getting fund for implementing the emerging technology solution is very difficult as an emerging trend may affect the IT departments as the innovation be sometimes odd with the legacy systems. Below are some pain points of the enterprise:

  • Will the new technology allow the enterprises to move faster?
  • Can the enterprise innovate on this platform atop one of the ageing back ends?
  • Will the new technology cost less over the course of our ownership of it?

As with any technology, it’s critical to determine the conditions under which blockchain should be applied. Blockchain can solve many, but not all, problems. One needs to define the criteria that should be met by using questions such as the following:

  • What are the required trust, integrity, and security levels?
  • How much data would be stored in the blockchain? Does all of the data need to be stored in the ledger or will some of it be stored outside? If off-chain storage will be used, how will this data be referenced by the transactions in the ledger?
  • How large is the business network? Will each network participant be able to access or store all information?
  • Do the transactions need to be partitioned across the network?
  • What are the performance and transaction processing requirements of the network?
  • Is there a need to automate business processes across the network?
  • How complex is the automation logic?

The answers to these types of questions will help determine if a blockchain (or related technology) should be used and the features required. For example, if the business network is small, or if the interactions only involve simple data passing, then a blockchain may not be needed, and traditional B2B messaging protocols or API-led integrations may be sufficient. If it’s determined that a blockchain-related solution is a fit, additional components will be necessary for a successful rollout. Just as a database is not the only component in application architectures, a blockchain needs to be augmented with capabilities that address questions such as those in the following diagram.

To answer all these questions that the enterprises have towards adapting emerging technologies, Bloxian Technology recognized pressing need of need there should be a platform at a lower cost where they can our customers can try and feel the potential of implementing these as a solution. While many architectural views are possible, the diagram below depicts one view that includes the components often necessary for a successful blockchain implementation. Starting from the bottom of the diagram and working upwards, note that the distributed ledger/blockchain, security components, blockchain APIs, and smart contracts are capabilities typically offered by a blockchain technology stack.

Code Free - Distributed App Development Platform

Proof of conceot journey

Pre-built modularized APIs
4X faster to build
8X faster to change
Build > Deploy > Go Live
Blockchain Agnostic
Intelligent Adaptable APT layer
Works offline
Drag-and-drop builder
Quick time to market
Version control

(IT Eco-System can be integrated via secured - Enterprise grade Connectors)

The focus of this white paper is limited to the much-needed capability to test and validate Blockchain use cases rapidly (highlighted as red box in above picture). Using Blox Code Free – Distributed App Development platform we can help the enterprise modernization program by integrating the emerging technologies with the legacy systems. We also realized that the front end should be as effective in areas such as adapting for new technologies and hence provide code free templates to create better and faster UI for our customers. Making this transformation with the latest technologies and legacy systems is a massive effort. As Blox The Code Free – Distributed App Development platform has considered all these factors while delivering products on time and on budget, the enterprise can concentrate on the functionalities leaving the technical challenges to the platform.

Solution

Blox helps the Enterprises to prepare for the future to attain the art of the next best in the digital transformation journey. BLOX is a versatile low code Blockchain application development platform that enable enterprises the much-needed ability to develop, integrate, deploy and go-live rapidly.

BLOX can cater to Organizations and Consortiums of any size gearing them with “quick time to market” missions. BLOX provides drag-and-drop builder with which users can produce a working Blockchain app that is instantly compiled and can be downloaded on iOS, Android and Windows PC devices. This ensures quick development that saves time and cost to build or change. Design your DApp once, run it natively on Android, iOS and Windows devices. Use our cloud or run your own server to meet data sovereignty requirements

BLOX supports advanced features such as QR Code/barcode scan, NFC technology, workflows, notifications and can attune to any IT ecosystem with range of connectors such as Corda, Amazon S3, Dropbox, Google Drive, SharePoint and many more. What this means is that you can connect any Blockchain to the BLOX and have a working Blockchain app in matter of few days. Whether there is a need to integrate ERP or would like to source information from external data-source in to the Distributed Application, BLOX ensures seamless integration with state-of-the-art RESTful and Get Hosted connectors. BLOX comes pre-packaged with network of nodes and range of APIs as a “Sandbox” or comes in “Professional” offering with dedicated nodes and custom requirements.

Let’s explore the BLOX components logically:

Prebuilt - Configured Nodes: The most basic layer of Blockchain are the nodes on which the applications execute. A Blockchain network will typically consist of bunch of computers running the same protocol. Blox platform will be delivered with a prebuild network of node. This means that once Blox is set-up, it will be ready to run Blockchain applications with little or no effort.

For each PoC, Blox offers a minimum of four prebuilt nodes on the Blockchain protocol (chosen for the use case as the Blockchain network). This plug and play model of Blockchain setup helps to avoid the time needed in booting up the systems to act as nodes. This also helps the enterprises to try the same use case on different Blockchain networks to figure out which best fits in the use case.

Blox’s vision is to democratize Blockchain experimentation, which is now a luxury reserved for very few. Blox platform will ensure that all enterprises have the opportunity to try on different Blockchain and find one that fits their need best. Companies can start with a development approach to build an app that will integrate back into a Blockchain infrastructure, which could be set-up as cloud. The goal here is rapid development, and the focus is on programming than infrastructure.

Onboard any Blockchain: Not all Blockchain are equal and Blox supports all major types of Blockchain. Blockchain can be broadly classified into public, private and permissioned.

Private:

Blox can spin out a private network for each enterprise with read and write access restricted to them. Private Blockchain are preferred when scalability and compliance, including data privacy and other regulatory guidelines, are key concerns. This network can be accessed only the enterprise team members.

Permissioned:

These Blockchain networks operate under a group leadership. Blox helps to set up the group and create a consortium-based network where the consensus process is controlled by a pre-selected set of nodes. Consortium Blockchain are mostly recommended for the financial sector use cases.

Blox’s pre-built APIs

Blox offers a wide range of pre-built APIs to cater for wide variety of record keeping, audit, asset tracking, asset issuing, asset transfer, cash transactions, delivery vs payment scenarios. Blox has been integrated with intelligent wrapper built to deliver any API which is driven from user input (which is simply a drag and drop interface in BLOX).

Blockchain APIs:

The service is aimed to empower enterprise developers to experiment with distributed ledger technology / Blockchain by offering them “a rapid prototyping developer environment.” The Blockchain APIs have customizable features and settings which are designed to be used in enterprise environments.

Developers can create digital assets and configure business logic to transfer assets more securely and privately among members of a permissioned, private and public Blockchain APIs..

Blockchain Analytics API

Blox is able to expose the Blockchain data in restful format. Data stored in the Blockchain are loaded and analytics is done on the Blockchain data which is pushed real time on screen. These analytics happen whenever there is a new event on the Blockchain. This can help to find fraud and compliance related issues or track your transactions real time.

Blox API Management:

Utilize the Blox API Management to expose your internal service to others in minutes.

Blox API gateway provides a wide range of policies for fine-grained control over how, when, and from where your user community can access your APIs. To realize enterprise solutions full potential, Blox offers a range of connectors to connect to a wide variety of data sources, including those in-house, and in private and public cloud applications.

Blox API Portal allows to define and manage community of API consumers and publish a single point of API access for internal or external developers. API analytics helps to understand the API performance, usage and errors. It also provides the API metrics to the consumers.

Blox Studio/Web portal

Blox studio provides the capability for anyone with basic understanding of business or programming, to develop quick distributed applications on any type of Blockchain. The studio allows dragging the fields, screens and components into the Blox Studio/web portal, which can later compile distributed apps that will work on your test network. You can also add your own code to this prototype by simply using out of the box connectors.

Blox Mobile client

Blox Mobile client enables a user to access the Blockchain Applications built on Blox Studio even when a user is offline. Simply create Applications on Blox studio and access the data on its Mobile client.

Blox ensures sync connectivity with BLOX server when the user comes back online, hence, cater to wider scenarios like construction, Asset tracking etc. Whether your App which is built on Studio uses NFC, QR Code scan that required push notifications or required connectivity to external data source like ERP tool, Dropbox, Google API; users now have access to their own blockchain ledger whilst on the move.

Dashboard

Any platform is not completed without a dashboard that provides a snapshot of the work in progress, performance metrics and insights through analytics. Blox is equipped with a strong dashboard, that provides insights into all these measures and more. The user can customize the dashboard based on what are the metrics that matter to them. Blox also allows the feature to filter results and set alerts for events, which will come in handy during prototype demos and experiment showcases.

Conclusion

During the age of rapid innovation and technology evolving at spiraling motion, enterprises have to adopt experimentation as a key strategy to develop new business models in order to stay relevant in market and provide value to the customers, reducing the operational cost and utilize disruptive technologies that can enable them reaching their vision. However, experimenting new ideas on emerging technologies are not easy. Blockchain is especially hard because the technology is very new and the experts who can engineer solutions are hard to find.

Blox is a code free platform that will enable enterprises to set-up a basic infrastructure and test solutions in a fast and cost-effective manner. Blox allows companies to truly understand the potential of these latest technologies in transforming their companies, by allowing them to couple their Blockchain ideas with existing IT ecosystem. The vast array of APIs expedites the build time and as Blox is code free, the companies can drive their portfolio of experiments without expensive, specialized resources. Blox is an ideal Blockchain experimentation platform in the market that can enable organizations to discover the best approach to stay relevant taking away the prevalent technical challenges.