Recently, Institute of Software, Chinese Academy of Sciences (ISCAS) has released a blockchain base component, RepChain, known for Reactive Permission Chain. It is a kind of permissioned blockchain which applied responsive programming to achieve autonomous control. According to director of Institute of Software Developing, Liang Geng, this component, featured by standardization, modularization and visualization, aims to connect blockchain with industry application to establish a secure channel based on identity access; it can greatly reduce code amount, allowing developers to solve the problem of blockchain application on the basis of meeting the requirements of project implementation.
Blockchain has been a buzzword in recent years. The past year of 2016 was known as the first year of blockchain, which is a year of great outbreak for blockchain in China, and also a year for start-up heat. In 2017, with combination of blockchain and industry application under great exploring, landing of mature application case is eagerly expected, in this way, it can thus move towards mature applications at a large-scale. In this context, ISCAS is also actively carrying out research in this area, and developed this blockchain base component, aiming to provide basic function support for application development based on blockchain. Zuo Chun, researcher of ISCAS and President of Sinosoft Co., Ltd. states, “blockchain starts from the decentralized public chain, while the application to enterprises needs a main body of responsibility, so it turns to the alliance chain. Its progress lies in the recognition and popularity of the alliance chain platform with the aim of convergence and standardization of the platform. Once breakthrough is made, it will surely usher in rapid development of application to a chain of industries. So RepChain would be a good direction to explore. ”
In the process of combining their business with blockchain, enterprises usually do not develop from the bottom layer, but seek for a system framework of blockchain that can customize their business, and enable developers to “learn and use easily”. In the development of RepChain, standard components that are validated by engineering practice are adopted as much as possible, which would be convenient for a third party to transform and use, and it has the visual interface, which can graph the processes of complex transactions’ spread and block out.
The RepChain system can be divided into six layers, from the bottom layer to the upper layer are separately data layer, network layer, consensus layer, contract layer, API layer and monitoring layer. The data layer is responsible for defining data format, on this basis, data exchange, verification, storage, reading and retrieval are realized. The network layer supports the access permission verification of the network, and on this basis, the decentralized gossip networking is carried out. And the consensus layer responses for the consensus module’s completing the input and output consensus of the block. Then the contract layer provides a transaction execution environment for the consensus layer, with security isolation, interpretation and execution scripts, providing context and underlying API visiting for script execution. The API layer provides external interface, allowing third party applications to interact with the system and developers to perform online tests, together with basic functions such as transaction submission, transaction retrieval, block retrieval, chain retrieval etc. Then comes the monitoring layer, it collects events and logs in the blockchain network and performs a visual real-time display and log playback on the front end.
The developing goal of RepChain is to better integrate the blockchain and the industry application. The three features, standardization, modularization and visualization of RepChain allow it to be applied to many different application occasions. In the insurance industry, RepChain could be applied for sharing link of putting medical examination result on the blockchain when contract is signed and putting evidence on the blockchain when insurance claims is made; In the field of digital assets, RepChain fits for aspects of digital asset allocation, holding certificate and transfer; And in the field of Internet of Things, RepChain could be applied for embedded systematic signature and food traceability. Besides, RepChain can also play a role in the fields related to tax, business, land and many other government services.
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