Tsai said that blockchain is a good technology, but it is not a panacea, not a unique weapon that can solve all problems. Photography: Jin Yuze
At present, public-chain technology is developing slowly in the country. In the future, the alliance chain will have more use scenarios and business value.
Text | Chinese Entrepreneur reporter Mina Chen Beilei
On the afternoon of March 8, the “Chinese Entrepreneur” reporter exclusively interviewed Cai Junge, general manager of the Tencent blockchain business, in the office of Tencent Building in Shenzhen. As early as three years ago, Tencent started to build a blockchain R&D team and succeeded in making blockchain technology take root in a series of industry scenarios. In the interview, Cai Tongge told reporters from a rational and pragmatic point of view. “The blockchain is a good technology, but it is not a panacea, it is not a unique weapon that can solve all problems.No matter how good it is, it must be matched with ecology and infrastructure to realize its value. Look at the objective point of view. Do not deify it too much. Do not underestimate its influence. Please give more patience. ”
For the upsurge of blockbuster entrepreneurship, he thinks, “The simplest is what kind of pain points you want to solve through blockchain technology. If you don’t use blockchain technology to live well, then don’t use it. Blockchains and blockchains should not be decentralized for decentralization."
CE: When was Tencent's blockchain team formed?
Tsai Yu Ge: Established at the end of 2015. We are first in R&D in blockchain, first established R&D team, confirmed the technical route, and built it from scratch.
CE: What are the main technical classifications and commercial applications of blockchain technology?
Cai Yuge: There are mainly two different technology paths for blockchain technology in the world:
The first is the public chain, which is decentralized. The application of To C is mostly. Bitcoin and Ethereum are all developed based on this technology path.
The second is the alliance chain, mainly the cooperation between institutions, the nodes between the organization and the organization participate in the accounting, the ordinary users do not participate in the accounting, the development of the application is mainly To B, but also further B to C . Tencent is now using the blockchain technology to develop the application scenarios. Commercial projects that have already landed, such as micro-gold, supply chain finance, e-certificate, and charity tracking, are all used for the alliance chain technology. Most blockchain applications developed by most financial institutions such as banks are based on alliance chain technology.We think there will be more usage scenarios in the future alliance chain.
Since the public chain is decentralized, it is generally necessary to solve the power problem through mining. However, there is no economic stimulus to contribute to you. Therefore, it is generally used to provide economic incentives to people who provide power. And rewards, but China’s digital currency must be issued by the central bank, and digital currencies are prone to trigger hype and bubbles.Public chain technology has developed slowly in China.
CE: How is the application of the two blockchain technologies developed overseas?
Cai Wei Ge: At present, the use of the public chain is relatively small in China, but there are still many companies overseas that have made different attempts on the public chain. Such as telegram telegram, is also a chat software, want to build the framework TON of the infrastructure based on the public chain, so that others do decentralized application on the above.
In the alliance chain, IBM made an alliance chain open source project. IBM is also constantly pushing the open source, community and build of this technology. Some of the domestic blockchain companies took IBM's open source code to change it, tune it, and made its own application.
In overseas, two lines have their own different products, companies with different levels, do the underlying infrastructure, do the application layer, do cross-chain performance, and there are verticals in a certain area, such as blockchain integration. AI, blockchain combined storage, and more.
CE: What is the alliance chain? How does the alliance chain achieve decentralization between institutions?
Tsai Ge: The alliance chain is a collaboration between commercial organizations and is multi-centered.
From the data point of view, the alliance chain is the data that exists between agencies, and their data needs to be consistent through consensus. For example, there are multiple decision makers in supply chain finance, core companies, banks, insurance companies, Tencent, and partners. Each participant has a node to participate in consensus accounting.
The business data is recorded on its own node, and the data consensus among multiple nodes is composed of multiple parties. It is not for which party has the final say. In this way, tamper-proof and traceability can be achieved. These features can increase the trust of organizations in cooperation, reduce trust costs, increase efficiency, and can stimulate multi-party cooperation.
In the alliance chain, the participants are relatively reliable institutions, so the credibility of the nodes involved in the alliance is much higher than that of any node in the ordinary Bitcoin. Bitcoin uses a workload proof algorithm, and the consensus algorithm of the alliance chain is different. Generally, it is much more efficient. For example, bitcoin calculations can reach seven pens in a second, and the consensus algorithm we have now can reach twenty-five thousand pens per second. ?
The alliance chain is mainly To B. C-end users do not participate in accounting, but only serve as users of an application.Ordinary users will have a weaker perception of blockchain technology at the product level.
Microgold is Tencent’s first internal business scenario to experiment with blockchain projects. Banks, Tencent and other institutions participated in micro-gold products and used multiple nodes to participate in accounting. Among them, Tencent provides the underlying technical support for the alliance chain to ensure the underlying performance, security, reliability, and convenience. Other participating organizations mainly consider how to use the characteristics of the blockchain to make application innovations and do business logic well.
In the past, using the original traditional method, the business between organizations was to be centralized and clear, and it was time-consuming to reconcile. However, clearing settlements are completed automatically by using blockchain technology for billing, and settlement actions do not need to be made afterwards. For multi-participant businesses, they need to have trust when participating, and the alliance chain will resolve this pain point, reduce trust costs, and operate more transparently and efficiently.
However, the alliance chain will also face some difficulties.Now many companies are slow to implement the alliance chain. One is the technical issue. The other is the perception of the technology itself.Many organizations and industries are not particularly aware of the blockchain issue. Therefore, in the early stages of various aspects, technological needs need to be improved, the concept needs to be popularized, and the cognition must be consistent. Many factors cause the alliance chain technology to be implemented. It also takes time during the process. Public chain because of TOC, and economic incentives, coupled with speculation, resulting in faster eye-catching, which attracted more attention.
CE: Which is the biggest problem in the alliance chain now?
Cai Jie Ge: The scene broke. There are scenarios to promote technology upgrades.
CE: What are Tencent's layouts in the blockchain?
Cai Yige:We have built a blockchain infrastructure platform called Blockchain-as-a-Service (BAAS). Currently, there are many registered users doing test and application development.
There are three layers in the cloud. The architecture of the cloud is IAAS, PAAS, and SAAS. This platform is in the middle layer, and the service layer of the blockchain is superimposed. This layer will provide developers with basic block links into the content, and will be able to put some supporting capabilities into it. For example, authentication, big data and other capabilities will be integrated. It is also good for him to allow developers to use other capabilities in addition to blockchain technology and to build his application more efficiently. Going further upwards is a blockchain-based SAAS service, such as a supply chain finance open platform that allows banks, core companies, suppliers, factoring and other roles to participate in doing business.
Data on commercial applications on the platform, we do not hold, nor do we have permission to see. How many nodes need to be on the chain is determined by the application developers themselves. The owner of the nodes is also the user. Tencent is only a platform service organization. This data does not belong to us.
CE: Is Tencent the first base block-based application platform in China?
Tsai Yuge: The BAAS platform was launched in November 2017 and is now open. Node purchases have also been gradually improved.
Tencent insisted on starting with the basic platform for R&D and operation from the very beginning. The current platform is free, and there is no clear charging plan for the time being.
In the early days, we communicated quite a lot with companies that use the platform. We also hope that they can in turn promote the improvement of our platform. Perfection is gradual and cannot be accomplished overnight. We set up a self-help, semi-self-help platform. We can build applications through guidelines and manuals without the need for too much involvement and assistance from our R&D team. Minimize the need for manual participation.
We also hope to form an ecological environment with many partnersBuilding vertical industry applications based on Tencent's blockchain will eventually lead to a more blossoming landscape, together creating an ecosystem platform based on blockchain applications.
CE: What is the current level of domestic blockchain technology? What is the supporting development based on blockchain technology?
Cai Weige: The entire blockchain technology and scenario have not yet reached the sophistication during the rapid evolution. Everything has only just begun.
Today's blockchain is so hot, but the really influential products are Bitcoin, Ethereum, mainly because it is To C, and it has speculative properties.However, if a technology can only be used in speculation, this technology is not subversive.
Now I'm also watching some new projects in the blockchain, but I've found that a lot of infrastructure support for the blockchain is still under construction. Blockchain technology has only just begun.When talking about the blockchain, everyone should not simply understand it as a single technology. It needs a series of supporting facilities, and there are a series of packages that can eventually change something.
For example, storage and blockchain projects need to be stored together. This aspect of upgrading is also very valuable. Another example is the payment, transaction security, and the currency exchange has many problems. Includes privacy protection. Privacy protection at the bottom of the blockchain, such as zero-knowledge proofs, etc. The application of this type of technology has not reached a very mature stage and is to be solved. The network consensus ability including Bitcoin is low and the scope of application is very small. However, many of its application scenarios require efficient transactions. If you give up speed because of absolute safety, the product will have limitations. Blockchains have a lot of work to do, from technical genres, to iterations of technology routes, to infrastructure construction. Ultimately, a full set of developments to a mature stage can affect more things.
CE: Doing alliance chain not only requires a lot of investment but also needs application scenarios. How can a blockchain startup company break through?
Cai Weige: It takes a lot of cost to make a coalition chain, technology needs to be invested, and the scene needs to be invested. This is why the alliance chain that is really good at home is a big company. Large corporations have scenarios that can plan for this for a long time, without the need for short-term returns.
The better choice for startups should be a combination of scenes. For example, cooperation with Tencent, Tencent to do the underlying technology and applications, and you do the scenario solution, this will be more practical for start-up companies.
CE: Some people think that the application with a large number of users is a sign of the real development of the blockchain industry. How do you view this view?
Tsai Yu Ge: This is a matter of opinion. The blockchain has ToC requirements and ToB needs. Just as the alliance chain does not necessarily require a lot of ordinary users to use it, it is more to solve the pain points of the industry and companies, such as supply chain finance and other scenarios. To C's scene has yet to be explored by all walks of life.
The key still depends on whether the blockchain technology in the To C field really solves some of the original pain points and problems and provides new value. This is the most important thing. If it is just a new bottle of old wine, this concept is set. No value.
CE: Most of the blockchain application scenarios we have seen are in the financial sector. Is it because of the solution to credit problems that the application of blockchains in the financial field is more promising?
Cai Weige: Blockchain solves the problem of trust, and the biggest cost of finance is trust, soThe combination of blockchain and finance is the most natural,However, it does not mean that it has not played in other areas.
For example, in medical care, electronic medical records can use blockchain technology to allow users to do authorization while protecting privacy.
The current situation is that many personal data are stored on a centralized platform without any privacy protection. The platform wants to use your data, and personal ownership of data is weak. With blockchain technology, you can make a personal file. Which platforms use your data, you can authorize, and may also bring you some economic benefits. For example, if AI wants to learn your data, is it possible for you to gain certain benefits? This is all possible.
CE: Tencent is the first company to pass the evaluation of the trusted blockchain. What is the standard for the evaluation of the trusted blockchain?
Cai Yige:This is China’s first blockchain technology standard launched by China’s ICT.This standard is more practical.
Through the evaluation of the trusted blockchain, you can assess whether you really use the blockchain technology, whether it really has the basic blockchain features such as non-destructive. A series of technical testing standards will be proposed here to see if you have achieved it. Tencent is also a standard participant.
We think that the industry needs standards, otherwise we talk about the blockchain for a long time, the concept of chat is not the same, and even some companies claim to be doing blockchain, just holdingdatabasechange.With the authoritative standard of a trusted blockchain, it is possible to sift through enterprises that are obviously selling dogs and let the companies that really do blockchain technology obtain endorsements.
CE: How does Tencent solve the problem of scarcity of talent in the blockchain field?
Cai Wei Ge: Our technical talents are basically internal transformation of Tencent. The industry of blockchain is very new, and few people have done blockchain. Just like the advent of mobile networks that year, it is very difficult for you to recruit Android and IOS. We are all cultivating ourselves.