Throughout the modern business era, industries and commercial operations have shifted substantially to digital processes. Whether you look at EDI as a means to exchange invoices or cloud-based billing and payment solutions today, businesses have steadily been moving towards increasing digital operations. In the last few years, we’ve seen the promises of digital transformation come alive, particularly in industries that have shifted to software-defined models. The next step of this journey will involve enabling digital transactions through decentralized networks. 

A fundamental adoption issue will be figuring out who controls and decides how a decentralized network is governed. It may seem oxymoronic at first, but decentralized networks still need governance. A future may hold autonomously self-governing decentralized networks, but this model is not accepted in industries today. The governance challenge with a decentralized network technology lies in who and how participants in a network will establish and maintain policies, network operations, on/offboarding of participants, setting fees, configurations, and software changes and are among the issues that will have to be decided to achieve a successful network. No company wants to participate or take a dependency on a network that is controlled or run by a competitor, potential competitor, or any single stakeholder at all for that matter. 

Earlier this year, we presented a solution for Open Governance Networks that enable an industry or ecosystem to govern itself in an open, inclusive, neutral, and participatory model. You may be surprised to learn that it’s based on best practices in open governance we’ve developed over decades of facilitating the world’s most successful and competitive open source projects.

The Challenge

For the last few years, a running technology joke has been “describe your problem, and someone will tell you blockchain is the solution.” There have been many other concerns raised and confusion created, as overnight headlines hyped cryptocurrency schemes. Despite all this, behind the scenes, and all along, sophisticated companies understood a distributed ledger technology would be a powerful enabler for tackling complex challenges in an industry, or even a section of an industry. 

At the Linux Foundation, we focused on enabling those organizations to collaborate on open source enterprise blockchain technologies within our Hyperledger community. That community has driven collaboration on every aspect of enterprise blockchain technology, including identity, security, and transparency. Like other Linux Foundation projects, these enterprise blockchain communities are open, collaborative efforts. We have had many vertical industry participants engage, from retail, automotive, aerospace, banking, and others participate with real industry challenges they needed to solve. And in this subset of cases, enterprise blockchain is the answer.

The technology is ready. Enterprise blockchain has been through many proof-of-concept implementations, and we’ve already seen that many organizations have shifted to production deployments. A few notable examples are:

  • Trust Your Supplier Network 25 major corporate members from Anheuser-Busch InBev to UPS In production since September 2019. 
  • Foodtrust Launched Aug 2017 with ten members, now being used by all major retailers. 
  • Honeywell 50 vendors with storefronts in the new marketplace. In its first year, GoDirect Trade processed more than $5 million in online transactions.

However, just because we have the technology doesn’t mean we have the appropriate conditions to solve adoption challenges. A certain set of challenges about networks’ governance have become a “last mile” problem for industry adoption. While there are many examples of successful production deployments and multi-stakeholder engagements for commercial enterprise blockchains already, specific adoption scenarios have been halted over uncertainty, or mistrust, over who and how a blockchain network will be governed. 

To precisely state the issue, in many situations, company A does not want to be dependent on, or trust, company B to control a network. For specific solutions that require broad industry participation to succeed, you can name any industry, and there will be company A and company B. 

We think the solution to this challenge will be Open Governance Networks.

The Linux Foundation vision of the Open Governance Network

An Open Governance Network is a distributed ledger service, composed of nodes, operated under the policies and directions of an inclusive set of industry stakeholders. 

Open Governance Networks will set the policies and rules for participation in a decentralized ledger network that acts as an industry utility for transactions and data sharing among participants that have permissions on the network. The Open Governance Network model allows any organization to participate. Those organizations that want to be active in sharing the operational costs will benefit from having a representative say in the policies and rules for the network itself. The software underlying the Open Governance Network will be open source software, including the configurations and build tools so that anyone can validate whether a network node complies with the appropriate policies.

Many who have worked with the Linux Foundation will realize an open, neutral, and participatory governance model under a nonprofit structure that has already been thriving for decades in successful open source software communities. All we’re doing here is taking the same core principles of what makes open governance work for open source software, open standards, and open collaboration and applying those principles to managing a distributed ledger. This is a model that the Linux Foundation has used successfully in other communities, such as the Let’s Encrypt certificate authority.

Our ecosystem members trust the Linux Foundation to help solve this last mile problem using open governance under a neutral nonprofit entity. This is one solution to the concerns about neutrality and distributed control. In pan-industry use cases, it is generally not acceptable for one participant in the network to have power in any way that could be used as an advantage over someone else in the industry.  The control of a ledger is a valuable asset, and competitive organizations generally have concerns in allowing one entity to control this asset. If not hosted in a neutral environment for the community’s benefit, network control can become a leverage point over network users.  

We see this neutrality of control challenge as the primary reason why some privately held networks have struggled to gain widespread adoption. In order to encourage participation, industry leaders are looking for a neutral governance structure, and the Linux Foundation has proven the open governance models accomplish that exceptionally well.

This neutrality of control issue is very similar to the rationale for public utilities. Because the economic model mirrors a public utility, we debated calling these “industry utility networks.” In our conversations, we have learned industry participants are open to sharing the cost burden to stand up and maintain a utility. Still, they want a low-cost, not profit-maximizing model. That is why our nonprofit model makes the most sense.

It’s also not a public utility in that each network we foresee today would be restricted in participation to those who have a stake in the network, not any random person in the world. There’s a layer of human trust that our communities have been enabling on top of distributed networks, which started with the Trust over IP Foundation

Unlike public cryptocurrency networks where anyone can view the ledger or submit proposed transactions, industries have a natural need to limit access to legitimate parties in their industry. With minor adjustments to address the need for policies for transactions on the network, we believe a similar governance model applied to distributed ledger ecosystems can resolve concerns about the neutrality of control. 

Understanding LF Open Governance Networks

Open Governance Networks can be reduced to the following building block components:

  • Business Governance: Networks need a decision-making body to establish core policies (e.g., network policies), make funding and budget decisions, contracting with a network manager, and other business matters necessary for the network’s success. The Linux Foundation establishes a governing board to manage the business governance.
  • Technical Governance: Networks will require software. A technical open source community will openly maintain the software, specifications, or configuration decisions implemented by the network nodes. The Linux Foundation establishes a technical steering committee to oversee technical projects, configurations, working groups, etc.
  • Transaction Entity: Networks will require a transaction entity that will a) act as counterparty to agreements with parties transacting on the network, b) collect fees from participants, and c) execute contracts for operational support (e.g., hiring a network manager).

Of these building blocks, the Linux Foundation already offers its communities the Business and Technical Governance needed for Open Governance Networks. The final component is the new, LF Open Governance Networks. 

LF Open Governance Networks will enable our communities to establish their own Open Governance Network and have an entity to process agreements and collect transaction fees. This new entity is a Delaware nonprofit, a nonstock corporation that will maximize utility and not profit. Through agreements with the Linux Foundation, LF Governance Networks will be available to Open Governance Networks hosted at the Linux Foundation. 

If you’re interested in learning more about hosting an Open Governance Network at the Linux Foundation, please contact us at governancenetworks@linuxfoundation.org

Introducing the Open Governance Network Model

Background

The Linux Foundation has long served as the home for many of the world’s most important open source software projects. We act as the vendor-neutral steward of the collaborative processes that developers engage in to create high quality and trustworthy code. We also work to build the developer and commercial communities around that code to sponsor each project’s members. We’ve learned that finding ways for all sorts of companies to benefit from using and contributing back to open source software development is key to the project’s sustainability. 

Over the last few years, we have also added a series of projects focused on lightweight open standards efforts — recognizing the critical complementary role that standards play in building the open technology landscape. Linux would not have been relevant if not for POSIX, nor would the Apache HTTPD server have mattered were it not for the HTTP specification. And just as with our open source software projects, commercial participants’ involvement has been critical to driving adoption and sustainability.

On the horizon, we envision another category of collaboration, one which does not have a well-established term to define it, but which we are today calling “Open Governance Networks.” Before describing it, let’s talk about an example.

Consider ICANN, the agency that arose after demands emerged from evolving the global domain name system (DNS) from its single-vendor control by Network Solutions. With ICANN, DNS became something more vendor-neutral, international, and accountable to the Internet community. It evolved to develop and manage the “root” of the domain name system, independent from any company or nation. ICANN’s control over the DNS comes primarily through its establishment of an operating agreement among domain name registrars that establishes rules for registrations, guarantees your domain names are portable, and a uniform dispute resolution protocol (the UDRP) for times when a domain name conflicts with an established trademark or causes other issues. 

ICANN is not a standards body; they happily use the standards for DNS developed at the IETF. They also do not create software other than software incidental to their mission, perhaps they also fund some DNS software development, but that’s not their core. ICANN is not where all DNS requests go to get resolved to IP addresses, nor even where everyone goes to register their domain name — that is all pushed to registrars and distributed name servers. In this way, ICANN is not fully decentralized but practices something you might call “minimum viable centralization.” Its management of the DNS has not been without critics, but by pushing as much of the hard work to the edge and focusing on being a neutral core, they’ve helped the DNS and the Internet achieve a degree of consistency, operational success, and trust that would have been hard to imagine building any other way. 

There are similar organizations that interface with open standards and software but perform governance functions. A prime example of this is the CA Browser Forum, who manages the root certificates for the SSL/TLS web security infrastructure.

Do we need such organizations? Can’t we go completely decentralized? While some cryptocurrency networks claim not to need formal human governance, it’s clear that there are governance roles performed by individuals and organizations within those communities. Quite a bit of governance is possible to automate via smart contracts (and repairing damage from exploiting them), promoting the platform’s adoption to new users, onboarding new organizations, or even coordinating hard fork upgrades still require humans in the mix. And this is especially important in environments where competitors need to participate in the network to succeed, but do not trust one competitor to make the decisions.

Network governance is not a solved problem

Network governance is not just an issue for the technical layers. As one moves up the stack into more domain-specific applications, it turns out that there are network governance challenges up here as well, which look very familiar.

Consider a typical distributed application pattern: supply chain traceability, where participants in the network can view, on a distributed database or ledger, the history of the movement of an object from source to destination, and update the network when they receive or send an object. You might be a raw materials supplier, or a manufacturer, or distributor, or retailer. In any case, you have a vested interest in not only being able to trust this distributed ledger to be an accurate and faithful representation of the truth. You also want the version you see to be the same ledger everyone else sees, be able to write to it fairly, and understand what happens if things go wrong. Achieving all of these desired characteristics requires network governance!

You may be thinking that none of this is strictly needed if only everyone agreed to use one organization’s centralized database to serve as the system of record. Perhaps that is a company like eBay, or Amazon, Airbnb, or Uber. Or perhaps, a non-profit charity or government agency can run this database for us. There are some great examples of shared databases managed by non-profits, such as Wikipedia, run by the Wikimedia Foundation. This scenario might work for a distributed crowdsourced encyclopedia, but would it work for a supply chain? 

This participation model requires everyone engaging in the application ecosystem to trust that singular institution to perform a very critical role — and not be hacked, or corrupted, or otherwise use that position of power to unfair ends. There is also a trust the entity will not become insolvent or otherwise unable to meet the community’s needs. How many Wikipedia entries have been hijacked or subject to “edit wars” that go on forever? Could a company trust such an approach for its supply chain? Probably not.

Over the last ten years, we’ve seen the development of new tools that allow us to build better-distributed data networks without that critical need for a centralized database or institution holding all the keys and trust. Most of these new tools use distributed ledger technology (“DLT”, or “blockchain”) to build a single source of truth across a network of cooperating peers, and embed programmatic functionality as “smart contracts” or “chaincode” across the network. 

The Linux Foundation has been very active in DLT, first with the launch of Hyperledger in December of 2015. The launch of the Trust Over IP Foundation earlier this year focused on the application of self-sovereign identity, and in many examples, usually using a DLT as the underlying utility network. 

As these efforts have focused on software, they left the development, deployment, and management of these DLT networks to others. Hundreds of such networks built on top of Hyperledger’s family of different protocol frameworks have launched, some of which (like the Food Trust Network) have grown to hundreds of participating organizations. Many of these networks were never intended to extend beyond an initial set of stakeholders, and they are seeing very successful outcomes. 

However, many of these networks need a critical mass of industry participants and have faced difficulty achieving their goal. A frequently cited reason is the lack of clear or vendor-neutral governance of the network. No business wants to place its data, or the data it depends upon, in the hands of a competitor; and many are wary even of non-competitors if it locks down competition or creates a dependency on a market participant. For example, what if the company doesn’t do well and decides to exit this business segment? And at the same time, for most applications, you need a large percentage of any given market to make it worthwhile, so addressing these kinds of business, risk, or political objections to the network structure is just as important as ensuring the software works as advertised.

In many ways, this resembles the evolution of successful open source projects, where developers working at a particular company realize that just posting their source code to a public repository isn’t sufficient. Nor even is putting their development processes online and saying “patches welcome.” 

To take an open source project to the point where it becomes the reference solution for the problem being solved and can be trusted for mission-critical purposes, you need to show how its governance and sustainability are not dependent upon a single vendor, corporate largess, or charity. That usually means a project looks for a neutral home at a place like the Linux Foundation, to provide not just that neutrality, but also competent stewarding of the community and commercial ecosystem.

Announcing LF Open Governance Networks

To address this need, today, we are announcing that the Linux Foundation is adding “Open Governance Networks” to the types of projects we host. We have several such projects in development that will be announced before the end of the year. These projects will operate very similarly to the Linux Foundation’s open source software projects, but with some additional key functions. Their core activities will include:

  • Hosting a technical steering committee to specify the software and standards used to build the network, to monitor the network’s health, and to coordinate upgrades, configurations, and critical bug fixes
  • Hosting a policy and legal committee to specify a network operating agreement the organizations must agree to for connecting their nodes to the network
  • Running a system for identity on the network, so participants to trust other participants who they say they are, monitor the network for health, and take corrective action if required.
  • Building out a set of vendors who can be hired to deploy peers-as-a-service on behalf of members, in addition to allowing members’ technical staff to run their own if preferred.
  • Convene a Governing Board composed of sponsoring members who oversee the budget and priorities.
  • Advocate for the network’s adoption by the relevant industry, including engaging relevant regulators and secondary users who don’t run their own peers.
  • Potentially manage an open “app store” approach to offering vetted re-usable deployable smart contracts of add-on apps for network users.

These projects will be sustained through membership dues set by the Governing Board on each project, which will be kept to what’s needed for self-sufficiency. Some may also choose to establish transaction fees to compensate operators of peers if usage patterns suggest that would be beneficial. Projects will have complete autonomy regarding technical and software choices – there are no requirements to use other Linux Foundation technologies. 

To ensure that these efforts live up to the word “open” and the Linux Foundation’s pedigree, the vast majority of technical activity on these projects, and development of all required code and configurations to run the software that is core to the network will be done publicly. The source code and documentation will be published under suitable open source licenses, allowing for public engagement in the development process, leading to better long-term trust among participants, code quality, and successful outcomes. Hopefully, this will also result in less “bike-shedding” and thrash, better visibility into progress and activity, and an exit strategy should the cooperation efforts hit a snag. 

Depending on the industry that it services, the ledger itself might or might not be public. It may contain information only authorized for sharing between the parties involved on the network or account for GDPR or other regulatory compliance. However, we will certainly encourage long term approaches that do not treat the ledger data as sensitive. Also, an organization must be a member of the network to run peers on the network, required to see the ledger, and particularly write to it or participate in consensus.

Across these Open Governance Network projects, there will be a shared operational, project management, marketing, and other logistical support provided by Linux Foundation personnel who will be well-versed in the platform issues and the unique legal and operational issues that arise, no matter which specific technology is chosen.

These networks will create substantial commercial opportunity:

  • For software companies building DLT-based applications, this will help you focus on the truly value-delivering apps on top of such a shared network, rather than the mechanics of forming these networks.
  • For systems integrators, DLT integration with back-office databases and ERP is expected to grow to be billions of dollars in annual activity.
  • For end-user organizations, the benefits of automating thankless, non-differentiating, perhaps even regulatorily-required functions could result in huge cost savings and resource optimization.

For those organizations acting as governing bodies on such networks today, we can help you evolve those projects to reach an even wider audience while taking off your hands the low margin, often politically challenging, grunt work of managing such networks.

And for those developers concerned before about whether such “private” permissioned networks would lead to dead cul-de-sacs of software and wasted effort or lost opportunity, having the Linux Foundation’s bedrock of open source principles and collaboration techniques behind the development of these networks should help ensure success.

We also recognize that not all networks should be under this model. We expect a diversity of approaches that will be long term sustainable, and encourage these networks to find a model that works for them. Let’s talk to see if it would be appropriate.

LF Governance Networks will enable our communities to establish their own Open Governance Network and have an entity to process agreements and collect transaction fees. This new entity is a Delaware nonprofit, a nonstock corporation that will maximize utility and not profit. Through agreements with the Linux Foundation, LF Governance Networks will be available to Open Governance Networks hosted at the Linux Foundation. 

If you’re interested in learning more about hosting an Open Governance Network at the Linux Foundation, please contact us at governancenetworks@linuxfoundation.org

Thanks!

Brian

SAN FRANCISCO, March 4, 2020The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization enabling mass innovation through open source, today announced enrollment is now open for a new professional certificate program – Developing Blockchain-Based Identity Applications. This program, offered through the edX training platform, is geared towards developers interested in building and deploying applications using the new “self-sovereign” paradigm for digital identity. It explores the possibilities for issuing and managing secure digital identities and credentials offered by Hyperledger Indy, Aries, and Ursa, for building applications on a solid digital foundation of trust. The program will also do a deep-dive into Hyperledger Aries, teaching learners how to create production-ready applications by developing code for issuing and verifying credentials with their own Aries agent.

“Managing and securing identity information is one of the most challenging problems of the digital age,” said Brian Behlendorf, Executive Director, Hyperledger. “With the capacity to distribute the control of information and authority, blockchain technologies can rewrite the rules for identity management. Hyperledger Indy, Aries, and Ursa, are the building blocks our global community has developed to bring self-sovereign identity to market. Getting up to speed on these technologies through this professional certification program will help you shape the future on this important front.”

 

Any identity-related data available online can be subject to theft. Breach Level Index says that over 5,880,000 records are stolen every day. The 2019 MidYear QuickView Data Breach Report shows that reported breaches in the first half of 2019 were up 54% compared to midyear 2018 (over 4.1 billion records exposed), with web being the number one breach type for records exposed, and hacking being the number one breach type for incidents. Blockchain-based identity management is revolutionizing this space. The tools, libraries, and reusable components that come with the three open-source Hyperledger projects, Aries, Indy, and Ursa, provide a foundation for distributed applications built on authentic data using a distributed ledger, purpose-built for decentralized identity.

In this program comprised of two online, self-paced courses, Introduction to Hyperledger Sovereign Identity Blockchain Solutions: Indy, Aries & Ursa (LFS172x) and Becoming a Hyperledger Aries Developers (LFS173x), students can expect to learn to:

  • Understand the problems with existing Internet identity/trust mechanisms today and learn how a distributed ledger, such as Hyperledger Indy, can be used for identity.
  • Discuss the purpose, scope, and relationship between Aries, Indy, and, Ursa and understand how these open-source blockchain technologies provide reliable self-sovereign identity solutions that add a necessary layer of trust to the Internet.
  • Understand the Aries architecture and its components, as well as the DIDComm protocol for peer-to-peer messages.
  • Deploy instances of Aries agents and establish a connection between two or more Aries agents.
  • Create from scratch or extend Aries agents to add business logic and understand the possibilities available through the implementation of Aries agents.

Introduction to Hyperledger Sovereign Identity Blockchain Solutions: Indy, Aries & Ursa (LFS172x) is addressed to a wide-ranging audience, walking the line between business and technology. The course explores how Hyperledger Aries, Indy, and Ursa add a necessary layer of trust to the Internet by creating and using digital identities rooted on blockchains or other distributed ledgers.

Becoming a Hyperledger Aries Developer (LFS173x) focuses on building applications on top of Hyperledger Aries components, the area where Self-Sovereign Identity Application Developers can have the most impact.

Students may register for the professional certificate program for a price of $398. Students can also audit for free each of the two courses for 7 weeks, or they may add a verified certificate for individual courses for $199. 

About The Linux Foundation

The Linux Foundation is the organization of choice for the world’s top developers and companies to build ecosystems that accelerate open technology development and industry adoption. Together with the worldwide open source community, it is solving the hardest technology problems by creating the largest shared technology investment in history. Founded in 2000, The Linux Foundation today provides tools, training, and events to scale any open source project, which together deliver an economic impact not achievable by any one company. More information can be found at www.linuxfoundation.org.

The Linux Foundation has registered trademarks and uses trademarks. For a list of trademarks of The Linux Foundation, please see our trademark usage page: https://www.linuxfoundation.org/trademark-usage.

Linux is a registered trademark of Linus Torvalds.

# # #

Media Contact:

Clyde Seepersad
The Linux Foundation
404-964-6973
cseepersad@linuxfoundation.org

New CHFD credential aimed to help fuel the supply of technical talent to support the continued demand for smart contract development. 

SAN FRANCISCO, March 3, 2020 – The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization enabling mass innovation through open source, today announced enrollment is now open for the new Certified Hyperledger Fabric Developer certification exam.  This is the latest in a series of training content and certification exams aimed at onboarding the next generation of technical talent for professional blockchain technologies. 

“Hyperledger Fabric has become a core technology for organizations looking to implement blockchain-based distributed ledgers and smart contract systems – leading to a shortage of professionals who are qualified to create and implement such systems,” said Brian Behlendorf, Executive Director, Hyperledger. “We have had over 200,000 students take our free introductory Hyperledger course and look forward to providing them with this new pathway to prove their technical chops.”

 

As with all Linux Foundation certification exams, the exam will be available remotely from virtually any location with a stable internet connection and webcam. Those who fail to pass the exam on their first attempt will be able to retake the exam one additional time at no cost. The exam is designed to be 2 hours long although for an introductory period candidates will be allowed 3 hours to complete it.

Candidates will have a variety of real-world tasks to perform on a live system as this is not a multiple-choice exam. A Certified Hyperledger Fabric Developer (CHFD) should demonstrate the knowledge to develop and maintain client applications and smart contracts using the latest Fabric programming model. Such a developer must also be able to package and deploy Fabric applications and smart contracts, perform end-to-end Fabric application life-cycle and smart contract management and program in Java or Node.js (or Go for smart contracts).

Exam topics will include:

  • Identity Management – 7%
  • Network Configuration – 8%
  • Smart Contract Development – 40%
  • Smart Contract Invocation – 25%
  • Maintenance and Testing – 20%

The full list of Domains and Competencies for CHFD can be found here. Learn more about the CHFA and CHSA certification exams and the community members that contributed on the Hyperledger blog.

About The Linux Foundation

The Linux Foundation is the organization of choice for the world’s top developers and companies to build ecosystems that accelerate open technology development and industry adoption. Together with the worldwide open source community, it is solving the hardest technology problems by creating the largest shared technology investment in history. Founded in 2000, The Linux Foundation today provides tools, training, and events to scale any open source project, which together deliver an economic impact not achievable by any one company. More information can be found at www.linuxfoundation.org.

The Linux Foundation has registered trademarks and uses trademarks. For a list of trademarks of The Linux Foundation, please see our trademark usage page: https://www.linuxfoundation.org/trademark-usage.

Linux is a registered trademark of Linus Torvalds.

# # #

Media Contact:

Clyde Seepersad
The Linux Foundation
404-964-6973
cseepersad@linuxfoundation.org

SAN FRANCISCO, November 21, 2019The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization enabling mass innovation through open source, today announced enrollment is now open for a new, free, course – Introduction to Hyperledger Sovereign Identity Blockchain Solutions: Indy, Aries & Ursa. This course is offered through edX, the trusted platform for learning.

To the surprise of absolutely no one, trust is broken on the Internet. Any identity-related data available online can be subject to theft. Breach Level Index says that over 5,880,000 records are stolen every day. The 2019 MidYear QuickView Data Breach Report shows that reported breaches in the first half of 2019 were up 54% compared to midyear 2018 (over 4.1 billion records exposed), with web being the number one breach type for records exposed, and hacking being the number one breach type for incidents. Wherever you go online, the advice is the same–make sure you understand what is behind each button before you click it. 

The three Hyperledger projects, Aries, Indy and, Ursa, provide a foundation for distributed applications built on authentic data using a distributed ledger, purpose-built for decentralized identity. Together, they provide tools, libraries, and reusable components for creating and using independent digital identities rooted on blockchains or other distributed ledgers so that they are interoperable across administrative domains, applications, and any other “silo.” This course explores the Hyperledger Aries, Indy and, Ursa projects and the possibilities they bring for building applications with a solid digital foundation of trust.

“Managing and securing identity information is one of the most challenging problems of the digital age,” said Brian Behlendorf, Executive Director, Hyperledger. “With the capacity to distribute the control of information and authority, blockchain technologies can rewrite the rules for identity management. The three projects covered by this course, Hyperledger Indy, Aries, and Ursa, are the building blocks our global community has developed to bring self-sovereign identity to market. Getting up to speed on these technologies and involved in these projects is the way to help shape the future on this important front.”

Created by Stephen Curran and Carol Howard from Cloud Compass Computing, Inc., LFS172x is addressed to a wide-ranging audience, walking the line between business and technology. Students will gain an understanding of:

  • The problems with existing Internet identity/trust mechanisms today.
  • How a distributed ledger, such as Hyperledger Indy, can be used for identity.
  • How the underlying blockchain technology makes it possible.
  • The purpose, scope, and relationship between Aries, Indy, and Ursa.
  • How Hyperledger Aries, Indy, and Ursa add a necessary layer of trust to the Internet.
  • The possibilities enabled by this new technology.

The course will describe the underlying blockchain/cryptography technology of Hyperledger Indy and the ecosystem that is building up around Aries agents. Those with a business and slight technical bent will be able to run basic hands-on exercises and explore the possibilities this emerging technology has to offer through demos.

Introduction to Hyperledger Sovereign Identity Blockchain Solutions: Indy, Aries & Ursa is available at no cost, with content access for up to 7 weeks. Learners may upgrade to the verified track for $99, which includes all graded assessments, unlimited access to the course content and the ability to earn a Verified Certificate upon passing the course.

About The Linux Foundation

The Linux Foundation is the organization of choice for the world’s top developers and companies to build ecosystems that accelerate open technology development and industry adoption. Together with the worldwide open source community, it is solving the hardest technology problems by creating the largest shared technology investment in history. Founded in 2000, The Linux Foundation today provides tools, training, and events to scale any open source project, which together deliver an economic impact not achievable by any one company. More information can be found at www.linuxfoundation.org.

The Linux Foundation has registered trademarks and uses trademarks. For a list of trademarks of The Linux Foundation, please see our trademark usage page: https://www.linuxfoundation.org/trademark-usage.

Linux is a registered trademark of Linus Torvalds.

# # #

Media Contact:

Clyde Seepersad

The Linux Foundation

404-964-6973

cseepersad@linuxfoundation.org

SAN FRANCISCO, September 17, 2019The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization enabling mass innovation through open source, today announced enrollment is now open for a new, free, course – Hyperledger Sawtooth for Application Developers.  This course is offered through the edX, the trusted platform for learning.

Blockchain and its potential in the enterprise landscape has received a lot of attention over the past few years. Today, blockchain has become a reality. This revolutionary technology is transforming how organizations do business, across a wide range of industries. 

Hyperledger Sawtooth is an open source project under the Hyperledger umbrella, and works as an enterprise-level blockchain system used for building, deploying, and running distributed ledger applications and networks.

“This is a great course for developers to learn how to develop for Hyperledger Sawtooth and simultaneously learn a simplified supply chain use case. With this course as a basis, developers will be ready to explore on their own deeper into Sawtooth application development or using the supply chain concepts branch out into Hyperledger Grid.”  –Dan Middleton, Head of Technology for Intel’s Blockchain and Distributed Ledger program and Hyperledger Sawtooth Project Maintainer

The Hyperledger Sawtooth for Application Developers (LFS174x) course is designed for experienced developers who want to write applications for the Hyperledger Sawtooth enterprise blockchain platform. Originally developed by Anne Chenette and Darian Plumb at Bitwise IO, the course starts with the basics of blockchain technology and the concepts of permissioned networks, then describes the important features of Hyperledger Sawtooth. 

The course includes a sample distributed application, Sawtooth Simple Supply, based on a simplified supply chain example. This application includes a web-app front end, a transaction processor (the equivalent of a smart contract) for the blockchain business logic, and a custom REST API for communication. Learning how to code this sample application will teach the student about important Hyperledger Sawtooth concepts and will help them understand how to create their own enterprise-level Hyperledger Sawtooth application.

This course will teach the following:

  • Blockchain concepts: blockchain structure and process flow, transactions, blocks, hashes and signing, permissions, and consensus
  • Hyperledger Sawtooth basics
  • Principles of application design for the Hyperledger Sawtooth platform
  • Create a full-featured Hyperledger Sawtooth application, using the included Sawtooth Simple Supply application
  • Run and troubleshoot an application.

The 2019 Technology Industry Innovation conducted by KPMG focused on the adoption of blockchain technologies suggests that 41 percent of businesses are likely to adopt and implement blockchain into their business operations in the next three years. In addition, the survey revealed 48 percent of enterprises believe blockchain will change the way they conduct and manage their business activities in the near future.

“We’re thrilled to partner with the Linux Foundation to offer this new course in Hyperledger Sawtooth,” said Anant Agarwal, edX CEO and MIT Professor. “edX is committed to providing learners with the career-relevant education they need to succeed professionally, and this course presents the opportunity for experienced developers to learn a cutting-edge platform critical to the rise and adoption of blockchain technology.”

Hyperledger Sawtooth for Application Developers (LFS174x) is available at no cost, with content access for up to 14 weeks. Learners may upgrade to the verified track for $99, which includes all graded assessments, unlimited access to the course content and the ability to earn a Verified Certificate upon passing the course.

About The Linux Foundation

The Linux Foundation is the organization of choice for the world’s top developers and companies to build ecosystems that accelerate open technology development and industry adoption. Together with the worldwide open source community, it is solving the hardest technology problems by creating the largest shared technology investment in history. Founded in 2000, The Linux Foundation today provides tools, training and events to scale any open source project, which together deliver an economic impact not achievable by any one company. More information can be found at www.linuxfoundation.org.

The Linux Foundation has registered trademarks and uses trademarks. For a list of trademarks of The Linux Foundation, please see our trademark usage page: https://www.linuxfoundation.org/trademark-usage.

Linux is a registered trademark of Linus Torvalds.

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Media Contact:

Clyde Seepersad

The Linux Foundation

404-964-6973

cseepersad@linuxfoundation.org

The open source project will establish and maintain a common legal and technical foundation for smart legal contracts

London, Accord Project Forum, June 6, 2019 – The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization enabling mass innovation through open source, today announced the launch of the Accord Project as a Linux Foundation project. The Accord Project is a nonprofit organization that builds open source code and documentation to maintain a common and consistent legal and technical foundation for contract management. The project comprises all the software necessary to author, edit and execute smart legal contracts in a standardized way. Many of the world’s largest global law firms have signed on, as well as leading industry bodies and technology companies such as DocuSign, IBM, IEEE and R3.

Smart contracts are showing promise for simplifying complexities in supply chain management and other contract-heavy areas of technology development, but they also introduce requirements for interoperability and consistency. The Accord Project provides a globally interoperable approach for creating contracts that bind legally enforceable natural language text to executable business logic. With an increased focus on enterprise digitalization, adoption of blockchain technologies and the growth of the API economy, the usage of computable agreements is rapidly increasing. Having a common format for “computable” legal agreements is an important cornerstone for the future of commercial relationships. One of the main purposes of Accord Project is to provide a vendor-neutral “.doc” format for smart legal agreements.

“The Linux Foundation is home to communities that are advancing the world’s most critical software infrastructure,” said Mike Dolan, VP of strategic programs at The Linux Foundation. “The Accord Project represents an opportunity to collaboratively build the framework necessary for the next generation of contracting. Their work is essential in supporting the software that runs our lives.”

Contract templates are composed of three elements: the Template Grammar (the natural language text for the template), the Template Model (the data model that backs the template), and the Logic (the executable business logic for the template). When combined these three elements allow templates to be edited, analyzed, queried and executed. Importantly, the Accord Project’s approach does not lock smart legal contracts into any particular execution environment or vendor applications. Smart legal contract templates can be used with a wide variety of technologies, including different types of distributed ledgers.

The templates are designed to be quick to create from existing legal contracts and easy to execute using the Ergo domain specific language. Ergo aims to help legal tech developers quickly and safely write computable legal contracts. Ergo’s other goals are modularity (reuse of existing contract or clause logic), ensuring safe execution, neutrality with respect to blockchain implementation if one is chosen, and being formally specified so the meaning of contracts is well defined and can be verified and preserved during execution.

Dan Selman, co-director of the Accord Project and Chair of its Technology Working Group, noted that “Our goals for the Accord Project are to promote the use of open legal technology, attract a self-sustaining base of contributors, supported by a rigorous governance structure. Linux Foundation has been an excellent steward to scores of open source projects, large and small, over many years. We believe Linux Foundation is the perfect home for Accord Project and look forward to learning from the collective wisdom of the Linux Foundation community and taking advantage of the various services and programs they offer.”

Developers, attorneys, business and finance professionals and other contract users can access the Accord Project online at accordproject.org and the code at www.github.com/accordproject. For technical documentation please visit: https://docs.accordproject.org/

About The Linux Foundation
Founded in 2000, the Linux Foundation is supported by more than 1,000 members and is the world’s leading home for collaboration on open source software, open standards, open data, and open hardware. Linux Foundation’s projects are critical to the world’s infrastructure including Linux, Kubernetes, Node.js, and more. The Linux Foundation’s methodology focuses on leveraging best practices and addressing the needs of contributors, users and solution providers to create sustainable models for open collaboration. For more information, please visit us at linuxfoundation.org.

The Linux Foundation has registered trademarks and uses trademarks. For a list of trademarks of The Linux Foundation, please see its trademark usage page: www.linuxfoundation.org/trademark-usage. Linux is a registered trademark of Linus Torvalds.

Another production-ready framework released by the Linux Foundation’s open business blockchain consortium

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – (May 6, 2019) – Hyperledger, a collaborative cross-industry effort created to advance blockchain technology, announced today the general availability of Hyperledger Iroha 1.0. Hosted by The Linux Foundation, Hyperledger Iroha is the fourth active Hyperledger project to reach 1.0, following Hyperledger Fabric, Hyperledger Sawtooth and Hyperledger Indy. Iroha is a distributed ledger project that aims to provide a development environment where C++ and mobile application developers can contribute to Hyperledger.

New Hyperledger Iroha 1.0 features include:

  • YAC Consensus — a consensus protocol that ensures the safety of the ledger, even if some nodes are faulty or cannot be trusted. The protocol scales linearly in the peer network size.
  • Fully Operational Multisignature — an option for transactions when your application needs multiple signatures for transaction settlement.
  • Updated client libraries — support for writing applications on many different platforms from mobile to mainframe using many different programming languages such as Java (compatible with Android, Scala etc.), JS, Python, and iOS.
  • Windows support (experimental) — Hyperledger Iroha now natively runs on Windows, as well as in Linux and MacOS environments.

“It’s extremely gratifying to see another one of Hyperledger’s active projects hit the 1.0 milestone,” said Brian Behlendorf, Executive Director, Hyperledger. “This is a huge testament to the strong collaboration of our growing community. I look forward to seeing development efforts around Hyperledger Iroha continue to grow and more and more productions systems powered by the framework later this year.”

Hyperledger Iroha complements other Hyperledger projects by providing an alternative design solution for mobile-oriented use cases in finance and identity management. Hyperledger Iroha has a long-term vision to simplify the implementation of blockchain business applications by providing an easy-to-use API and a universal peer model. Hyperledger Iroha has a modular architecture making it additive to existing projects using other Hyperledger technologies and provides a robust library of reusable components to enhance existing applications.

Hyperledger Iroha contributors from around the world attend meet-ups and blockchain events, collaborate with universities, and answer constant questions in chats to help people learn about and use the framework. All are invited to participate in this open community.

Hyperledger aims to create distributed ledger technology that enables organizations to build and run robust, industry-specific applications, platforms and hardware systems to support their individual business transactions. The consortium now has more than 270 members with steady growth since its inception, spanning various industries including finance, healthcare, the Internet of Things, credit card services, supply chain and aeronautics, among several others.

You can find the Hyperledger Iroha 1.0 documentation here: https://iroha.readthedocs.io/en/latest/. Follow the “Getting Started” guide to create your first Hyperledger Iroha network in 10 minutes.

Community Quotes:

“The release of Hyperledger Iroha 1.0 is a significant milestone for this vibrant community and the enterprise blockchain space,” said Makoto Takemiya, CEO, Soramitsu. “As a core contributor to the project, we are very excited to see the Hyperledger Iroha team reach this milestone and continue to build upon the diverse DLT ecosystem developing under the Hyperledger greenhouse.”

“We are very excited about the release of Hyperledger Iroha 1.0 because it offers an out-of-box solution for implementation of blockchain networks to mobile devices,” said Yasir Azeem, Head AI and Blockchain from Ikioo. “With the combination of scalability and a permissioned Blockchain, Hyperledger has built something worth commending.”

“Global business is always terrific, and we had looked for the solution that fits our requirements in terms of a solution that is 100% open-sourced, oriented to specific needs of our task: account management, and KYC and supportive in terms of community,” said Alexander Yakovlev, NSD. “Iroha’s existing adoption experience in several countries and practical case with Cambodian central bank were additional benefits.”

Additional Resources:

About Hyperledger

Hyperledger is an open source collaborative effort created to advance blockchain technology by addressing important features for a cross-industry open standard for distributed ledgers. It is a global collaboration including leaders in finance, banking, Internet of Things, supply chains, manufacturing and Technology. The Linux Foundation hosts Hyperledger as a Collaborative Project under the foundation. To learn more, visit: https://www.hyperledger.org/.

Contact

Emily Fisher
Hyperledger/Linux Foundation
efisher@contractor.linuxfoundation.org

Advances Collaboration with Growing Portfolio of Working Groups and Cross-Industry Special Interest Groups

SAN FRANCISCO (March 27, 2019) Hyperledger, an open source collaborative effort created to advance cross-industry blockchain technologies, today announced that nine organizations  have joined the community. The new members, which includes the first general members from Malaysia and Saudi Arabia, further strengthen the global support for the leading enterprise blockchain project.  

Hyperledger is a multi-venture, multi-stakeholder effort hosted at the Linux Foundation that includes various enterprise blockchain and distributed ledger technologies. With the support of its fast-growing and increasingly diverse community, the organization announced the expansion of its portfolio of Special Interest Groups (SIGs), with the addition of the Hyperledger Social Impact SIG, Hyperledger Trade Finance Special Interest Group and, most recently, Telecom SIG. Hyperledger also welcomed the Smart Contract Working Group. Additionally, Hyperledger released two case studies offering a detailed look at Walmart’s unprecedented advancement of the food supply chain industry using Hyperledger Fabric and British Columbia’s efforts to cut government red tape with Hyperledger Indy.

“Our growing line-up of members and cross-community and cross-industry groups all point to the value of collaborative development, particularly for enterprise blockchain technologies,” said Brian Behlendorf, Executive Director, Hyperledger. “As our Walmart and British Columbia case studies demonstrate, blockchain creates common ground for a network of stakeholders, adding value for everyone in the process. We view our community-based, open source approach in the same light, encouraging cross-industry collaboration at every turn. We welcome our newest members and look forward to their contributions to the community’s efforts.”

Hyperledger allows organizations to create solid, industry-specific applications, platforms and hardware systems to support their individual business transactions by offering enterprise-grade, open source distributed ledger frameworks and code bases. The latest general members to join the community are Altavoz, Flowchain, Limar Global, PeerNova, Inc., Quant Network, ReGov Technologies Sdn. Bhd, Securitize and Silicon Valley Bank.

Hyperledger supports an open community that values contributions and participation from various entities. As such, pre-approved non-profits, open source projects and government entities can join Hyperledger at no cost as associate members. Associate members joining this month include Auburn University RFID Lab.

New member quotes:

Altavoz

“When Altavoz began accepting Bitcoin in 2013, we came to understand the importance of blockchain through the forest of cryptocurrencies,” said Altavoz CEO Nelson Jacobsen. “This led to work with the entertainment trade group, MusicBiz.org, on crypto and blockchain educational issues for artists, labels and music distribution companies. Joining the Linux Foundation and Hyperledger is the right next step for the growth of blockchain in the entertainment industry, and we look forward to being a part of Hyperledger’s efforts to create an open standard for distributed ledger technology.”

Flowchain

“Flowchain is excited to be a Hyperledger member,” said Jollen Chen, founder & CEO, Flowchain. “As a distributed ledger for peer-to-peer IoT networks and real-time data transactions, Flowchain’s design and architecture achieve advanced performance in both time and messages size compared to traditional distributed ledger technologies. By joining Hyperledger, Flowchain is ready to move to the next level and build up more application scenarios for IoT and AI industries. We are also looking forward to collaborating with more open-source based teams to evolve blockchain solutions.”

Limar Global

“We are pleased to join Hyperledger and to be the first Saudi company to join this global member community,” said Abdulellah M. Alnahdi, co-founder/director of Limar Global Technology. “Our team has been inspired by the Vision of 2030 for digital transformation of our country.  Limar Global Tech aims to be a leader in the technological developments of Saudi Arabia and we realize that Hyperledger is the perfect community for our government and private sector to leverage for this digital transformation. We strive to bring forth the best for our people and working with the Hyperledger community will allow us to accelerate the use of DLT in our country. Whether its eHealth, Supply Chain management, or government services, we strive to adopt use cases that will ultimately make people’s lives easier. Our mission is to simplify life with advanced technologies and to help create a digital state that serves the greater good in our country. We look forward to collaborating with the Hyperledger community members and contributing to the greater cause of trusted networks.”

PeerNova, Inc.

We are excited to join the Hyperledger community,” said Gangesh Ganesan, PeerNova President & CEO. “Our Cuneiform® Platform is built on principles of interoperability across existing financial and market infrastructures. Joining the Hyperledger community allows us to continue developing a solution that works seamlessly with internal, external, and all emerging DLT networks to achieve end-to-end visibility in real-time while ensuring privacy and confidentiality.”

Quant Network

“We are honored to join Hyperledger and the Linux Foundation to contribute to open source software and provide domain expertise,” said Gilbert Verdian, CEO and founder, Quant Network. “We see the immense value of collaborating to bring mass adoption for blockchain technology and contributing with our Overledger operating system, which helps unlock the potential of blockchain technology by addressing interoperability between blockchains as well as existing networks. Our work is driven by the belief that collaboration makes the blockchain ecosystem stronger, which is why the majority of our code is open source. We believe it’s crucial to support the development of DLT solutions and Hyperledger projects for enterprises and developers. We are excited to join this community to both contribute and help customers and users around the world benefit from this transformational technology.”

ReGov Technologies Sdn. Bhd.

“We are excited to be the first general member of Hyperledger in Malaysia,” said Datuk Paul Khoo, Founder and CEO of ReGov Technologies Sdn Bhd. “The goal is to infuse and grow the capabilities of Hyperledger within the Malaysian public and private sector to build trust and accountability while streamlining processes to reduce cost. Leveraging the ecosystem of Hyperledger, ReGov will drive change using this next-generation technology to improve transparency and governance within all organisational spheres in Malaysia.”

Securitize

“At Securitize, we believe all financial products will eventually adopt blockchain,” said Carlos Domingo, CEO & co-founder, Securitize. “As a leading technology platform for financial products, we see our membership in Hyperledger as a logical, evolutionary step in order to properly provide services to financial institutions on both permission-based and private blockchains.”

Silicon Valley Bank

“We could not be more excited to join the Linux Foundation and Hyperledger and do our part to advance the Open Source community,” said Dave Kochbeck, Chief Scientist, Silicon Valley Bank. “As the leading financial services institution for the innovation economy, it is critically important that we go beyond the transaction to engage deeply in the technical communities that will help shape the future of financial services and how we work with and support our clients.”

About Hyperledger

Hyperledger is an open source collaborative effort created to advance cross-industry blockchain technologies. It is a global collaboration including leaders in finance, banking, Internet of Things, supply chains, manufacturing and Technology. The Linux Foundation hosts Hyperledger under the foundation. To learn more, visit: https://www.hyperledger.org/.

Platform dedicated to increasing data literacy joins the Linux Foundation to advance best practices, offer open courseware for data teamwork

SAN FRANCISCO – March 20, 2019 – The Linux Foundation, the nonprofit organization enabling mass innovation through open source, today announced DataPractices.org, the first-ever template for data best practices, will now be a hosted project under the Linux Foundation and offer open courseware for data teamwork.

Datapractices.org was initially pioneered by data.world as a “Manifesto for Data Practices,” comprised of values and principles to illustrate the most effective, modern, and ethical approach to data teamwork. As an open project under the Linux Foundation, Datapractices.org intends to maintain and further develop a collaborative approach to defining and refining data best practices. The project will also facilitate collaboration and development of open courseware to guide organizations interested in aligning their data practices with the values (inclusion, experimentation, accountability, and impact) and principles of DataPractices.org.

As a part of the Linux Foundation, DataPractices.org intends to enable a vendor-neutral community to further establish best practices and increase the level of data knowledge across the data ecosystem. The project’s new open courseware is available to anyone interested in data best practices—including novice practitioners, data managers, corporate evangelists, seasoned data scientists, and more. The project also welcomes expert practitioners to help refine and advance the courseware.

“By joining forces with the Linux Foundation, we are inviting the broader community to help datapractices.org evolve,” said Brett Hurt, co-founder and CEO of data.world. “This is the collective knowledge of a group of experts that can, and should, continue to be refined by those closest to the effective, modern, and ethical use of data.”

“We are pleased to welcome datapractices.org to the Linux Foundation as we have been working with organizations and communities focused on openly sharing data,” said Mike Dolan, vice president of Strategic Programs at the Linux Foundation. “It’s important to see the industry align to have best practices they can reference to foster an open, collaborative teamwork approach to help support the entire data ecosystem.”

More details are available in the Q&A blog post, as well as via the https://datapractices.org/ website. To participate in the open courseware, visit https://datapractices.org/courseware/ .

About the Linux Foundation

Founded in 2000, the Linux Foundation is supported by more than 1,000 members and is the world’s leading home for collaboration on open source software, open standards, open data, and open hardware. Linux Foundation’s projects are critical to the world’s infrastructure including Linux, Kubernetes, Node.js, and more.  The Linux Foundation’s methodology focuses on leveraging best practices and addressing the needs of contributors, users and solution providers to create sustainable models for open collaboration. For more information please visit us at www.linuxfoundation.org.

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The Linux Foundation has registered trademarks and uses trademarks. For a list of trademarks of The Linux Foundation, please see our trademark usage page: https://www.linuxfoundation.org/trademark-usage. Linux is a registered trademark of Linus Torvalds.