A Watson Research Center team at IBM recently filed a patent application that says blockchain technology can be of great help in tracking open scientific research. According to the patent, blockchain can help researchers track their work across institutions. This new development based on distributed ledger technology (DLT) is one more non-financial application from the IT giant that is continuously researching blockchain and related technologies for applications.
As per the filing, the latest patent makes the scientific research log tamper-resistant. The filing for the patent from IBM says, “The blockchain system can form a blockchain representing a research project, wherein the blockchain comprises a first block of research data and a second block of analysis data representing a log of an analysis performed on the research data. Summary blocks and correction blocks can also be added to the blockchain representing the post analysis of the research results.”
IBM’s patent to offer platform for sharing scientific research information
IBM first filed the application for “Blockchain for Open Scientific Research” in December 2017 with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The patent lists IBM researchers Patrick Watson, Ravindranath Kokku, Maria Chang, and Jae-Wook Ahn as inventors. According to the patent application, as of now the platforms for sharing scientific research information and displaying the transparent data collection in a step-by-step manner are insufficient.
Current platforms available do not offer enough mechanisms and controls due to which getting genuine information and trustworthy data becomes difficult. There are very few platforms currently available that ensure that the data resists modifications.
IBM and Alibaba lead blockchain-related patent filings
Apart from IBM, many other companies use distributed ledger technology for scientific research. Blockchain for Science, a firm from Berlin, recently organized its first international conference. At the conference, the think-tank declared that around 30 projects are working on implementing blockchain for research across the world and the time is right to steer the community’s thinking in this direction.
The conference stressed encouraging healthy competition over freeing business models, token economies, accessible UIs, and effective workflows. As of now, Alibaba leads in the list of blockchain-related patents closely followed by IBM.