"Blockchain" is easy to dismiss as just a buzzword. Ever since the arrival of cryptocurrencies, people have tried to cram "blockchain" into their marketing copy without bothering to explain what it is or why it might matter. Yet there's a reason for all the hype, as there's much more to blockchain than just trading cat pictures. The Mega Blockchain Mastery Bundle, temporarily just $39, will show you why this technology is so important.

What Is Blockchain?

At its most basic, a blockchain is an evolution of double-entry bookkeeping, where instead of two people having a ledger kept centrally, everyone involved in a transaction network has the ledger. Starting with the genesis block, as transactions are performed new blocks are made, consisting of an encrypted copy of the previous block, a timestamp, and the transaction data.

The key is that everybody has the same blockchain, which is constantly updated, and for any transaction to happen within that network, everybody's blockchain needs to match perfectly. If it doesn't, the transaction doesn't go through. It also protects against retroactive fraud; a block cannot be changed without the consent of the majority of users in the network, so hiding fake transactions becomes almost impossible.

Another advantage is that everybody has the entire record to examine, which aids in transparency and trust. It's relatively simple to go back and sift through records to confirm a person's statement or a chain of custody. You know how at work somebody might claim they never got an email? With blockchain, you could just pop open the record and see if they were telling the truth.

Why Learn Blockchain?

These two points make blockchain useful not just for cryptocurrencies, but for any transaction where you need a detailed record of who's doing what and when. One popular example is the smart contract.

You've engaged with a smart contract before if you've ever bought a soda from a vending machine. The "contract" is that if you feed a few quarters into the machine, you'll get a refreshing beverage. You slot your coins in, and the machine instantly fulfills the contract, albeit sometimes with more fizz than you wanted.

With smart contracts, certain legal transactions can essentially be turned into computer programs; the terms are agreed to, as tracked by the blockchain, the contract is signed by both parties, and it's instantly executed. There's no haggling, no debate, and no hidden terms. You simply create a contract, someone else fulfills it, and the rest of the process is automated.

That's especially important in transactions such as fair-trade buying, carbon pricing, and blocking counterfeit goods from entering the market. It's not just that the companies involved know where their product came from: It's that everyone does.

Mastering Blockchain

The Mega Blockchain Mastery Bundle offers 56 hours of training, across 13 lectures, that takes you through the fundamentals up above and then moves on to the broader uses of blockchain. It uses the EOSIO platform, available as open sources, to show you how blockchain works, from the basics all the way to the most complex.

You'll see how cryptocurrencies are built from the ground up and how, from there, cryptocurrency networks can be used to develop smart contracts. You'll learn the details of how security works in the blockchain and how to apply it to create confidence in every transaction. Finally, you'll see how to use these skills both in your career and to scrutinize the security and safety of other cryptocurrencies.

Well after the hype has died down, blockchain will underpin crucial parts of the world. For 97% off, the Mega Blockchain Mastery Bundle will show you how to build that world.

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