Why financial infrastructure needs to be open-source — Hyperledger

Governments, organizations, and financial institutions needing to utilize blockchain technology must first make use of open-source tools for management and development.

At Paris Blockchain Week, Daniela Barbosa, the executive director of Hyperledger, had an exclusive conversation with CryptoMoon. She explained that open-source blockchain tech is indispensable for global organizations.

Barbosa, as the Linux Foundation’s general manager, emphasized that moving essential financial infrastructures to blockchain relies upon the foundation of an open-source network with collaborative decision-making.

Why financial infrastructure needs to be open-source — Hyperledger

“Organizations from various parts of the globe choose to collaborate with Hyperledger families due to their association with the Linux Foundation. This arrangement offers open governance, open development, and is backed by significant businesses, administrations, and institutions, as Barbosa pointed out.”

The Hyperledger director emphasized that it’s important for organizations using their tech stack not just that the tools are open-source, but also that they offer open development and a vibrant community of various maintainers and coders actively contributing to the codebase.

“Nobody wants to build new rails on code that one company owns. If that company goes out of business or changes its mind and says we’re no longer open source, you must pay license fees to continue using what you built.”

Barbosa similarly holds that the Linux Foundation prioritizes promoting open leadership and creating resources for open-source projects. She brought up the extensive usage of Linux Kernel in various computer systems as evidence of the deep rootedness of open-source foundations in critical infrastructure.

“Over the past quarter century, the Linux Foundation has played a pivotal role in fostering open source communities and creating essential software. Two prime examples are Linux Kernel and Kubernetes. In essence, these technologies power the infrastructure for virtually all cloud computing services,” Barbosa explained.

The Linux Foundation’s General Manager stated that many companies have worked to share their software and source code publicly. Yet, she raised doubts about whether merely making these resources accessible on GitHub is sufficient for truly open development and oversight.

Barbosa described the role of the foundation as follows: “We facilitate open collaboration among competing banks and encourage development. Notable companies, such as Accenture and IBM, can work together for the benefit of the community.”

In the financial services sector, it’s crucial to keep in mind the potential long-term implications if regulatory bodies start scrutinizing ownership structures and make adjustments to the fundamental software.

Barbosa additionally shared the background story of how Hyperledger’s blockchain solutions have evolved. Notably, Hyperledger Besu, an influential Ethereum engine, now ranks among its key contributions.

Hyperledger Besu is an open-source Java program that runs Ethereum transactions. It supports both public and private networks and can execute any Ethereum smart contract. Users have the freedom to utilize various Ethereum token specifications, such as ERC-20 and ERC-721, for their non-fungible tokens.

Why financial infrastructure needs to be open-source — Hyperledger

“By 2019, institutions were very interested in Ethereum ecosystem. This was the contribution that came in from Consensys around the time that the Hyperledger Foundation and Ethereum Enterprise Alliance joined forces,” Barbosa said.

Barbosa referred to data from Ethereum’s blockchain that indicates around 12% of its mainnet users employ Hyperledger Besu as their execution client. ConsenSys Linea and Hedera Hashgraph both operate on this client.

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2024-04-19 13:11