Distributed ledger technologies (DLT), including blockchains, have become enormously popular since the introduction of Bitcoin, the world’s first operational blockchain, in 2008. As groundbreaking as the Internet, Blockchain technology promises to radically change the world. What role will you play in the blockchain revolution? This class will provide an overview of the concept, technology, and impacts of blockchain. This course will be multi-level, multidisciplinary, and critical, with a focus towards giving students an introductory understanding of how blockchains work, where they are used, their history, limitations, and opportunities, and how they will shape organizations and society both now and in the future. This is not a coding course. The course objective is to cut through the hype and confusion surrounding blockchain technology to help students think broadly about technology as a force in society and how we can use distributed ledger technologies to shape the future.
- Introduction to Blockchain technology and terminology
- The history of blockchain: digital innovators, crypto-anarchists and cypherpunks
- Exploring real-world blockchain use cases including cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin, Ethereum, etc.
- Technological agency and affordances: how technology acts as a force on society
- Moving past the hype: understanding the challenges, constraints, and dangers of Blockchain
- The socio-technical imaginary: reflections on the present and future blockchain world
- Examining the ways innovators are using blockchain for good: transforming value and markets
- Special Topics are chosen by the students
- Events and Event-driven Programming and Wrap UP
Upon successful completion of this course, the student will understand:
• Blockchain/distributed ledger technology terminology and history
• Useful applications for blockchain/distributed ledger technology
• How technology acts as an independent/interconnected force on society
• Both the dangers and opportunities provided through Blockchain technology’s affordances