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The Basics of Blockchain that you should know by now

What is Blockchain?

Blockchain is a decentralized, digital ledger technology that records transactions across multiple computers so that the record cannot be altered retroactively without the alteration of all subsequent blocks and the consensus of the network. This ensures the integrity and security of data.

Blockchain stock photo
Basics of Blockchain in a 2 minute read

Key Components of Blockchain:

  • Blocks: Each block contains a list of transactions. Once a block is completed, it gets added to the chain.

  • Chain: A sequence of blocks, hence the name blockchain.

  • Nodes: Computers that participate in the blockchain network. Each node has a copy of the entire blockchain.

  • Hash: A unique identifier for a block, created using a cryptographic hash function. It ensures the integrity of the data within the block.

How Blockchain Works:

  1. Transaction Initiation: A user initiates a transaction (e.g., sending cryptocurrency).

  2. Transaction Verification: Nodes in the network verify the transaction using consensus algorithms like Proof of Work (PoW) or Proof of Stake (PoS).

  3. Block Creation: Verified transactions are bundled together into a block.

  4. Hashing and Linking: Each block is hashed and linked to the previous block in the chain.

  5. Chain Update: The new block is added to the blockchain, and all nodes update their copy of the blockchain.

Types of Blockchain:

  • Public Blockchain: Open to anyone to join and participate (e.g., Bitcoin, Ethereum).

  • Private Blockchain: Restricted access, controlled by a single organization.

  • Consortium Blockchain: Controlled by a group of organizations.

Blockchain Applications:

  • Cryptocurrency: Bitcoin, Ethereum, and other digital currencies.

  • Smart Contracts: Self-executing contracts with the terms of the agreement directly written into code.

  • Supply Chain Management: Tracking the origin and journey of products.

  • Voting Systems: Secure and transparent voting processes.

  • Healthcare: Secure sharing of patient records.

Advantages of Blockchain:

  • Decentralization: No single point of control or failure.

  • Transparency: All transactions are visible to participants.

  • Security: Transactions are encrypted and linked, making them tamper-proof.

  • Immutability: Once a transaction is recorded, it cannot be altered.

Challenges and Limitations:

  • Scalability: Managing the growing size of the blockchain and transaction speed.

  • Energy Consumption: High energy use, especially in PoW systems.

  • Regulation: Uncertain regulatory environments.

  • Complexity: Technical knowledge required for implementation and use.

Summary of the Basics of Blockchain

Blockchain technology is a revolutionary way of recording and securing transactions in a decentralized manner. Its potential applications span various industries, promising increased transparency, security, and efficiency. However, challenges like scalability and regulation need to be addressed for widespread adoption. Knowing these basics of blockchain can help you understand the technology and your investments.


This article was written by Chat GPT when prompted to teach the basics of blockchain. FNL content including, but not limited to, articles, podcasts, videos, live streams, and websites are intended for informational purposes and should NOT be considered financial, investment, nor trading advice. Cryptocurrency, futures, foreign currency and options trading contains substantial risk and is not for every investor. An investor could potentially lose all or more than the initial investment. Risk capital is money that can be lost without jeopardizing one’s financial security or lifestyle. Only risk capital should be used for trading and only those with sufficient risk capital should consider trading. Past performance is not necessarily indicative of future results.


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