To begin with, Hyperledger is neither a cryptocurrency nor a technology. Hyperledger is a project. In simple terms, hyperledger is an umbrella project of collaborative effort created to advance cross-industry blockchain technologies.
We have analyzed deeply about the differences between between the two.
Hyperledger was started by Linux Foundation in December 2015. Its first founding member was announced in February 2016 and by March 2016 it had ten members. Currently the platform has over 100 members. The board of governors of Hyperledger project comprises of twenty members. It is chaired by the CEO of digital asset, MR. Blythe Masters and has a technical committee of twelve members chaired by Christopher Ferris, CTO of Open Technology at IBM.
Hyperledger platform is stimulated by blockchain technology and does not support Bitcoin or any other cryptocurrency. The main objective of the project was to support the collaborative development of blockchain based distributed ledgers. Hyperledger has a key focus on improving the reliability and performance of the systems, to make them capable of supporting worldwide business transactions by major financial technological and supply chain companies.
The project began accepting proposals for incubation of codebases and other technologies as core elements at the start of 2016. There were speculations that hyperledger would develop its own cryptocurrency but Behlendorf pointed out that there will never be a cryptocurrency for hyperledger project. The project started gaining popularity in the Initial Coin Offering (ICO) after it produced ready hyperledger fabric 1.0 on 12th July 2017. Later in August 2017, hyperledger consortium announced its blockchain Cloud Service Offering after being joined by Oracle. Consequently, The Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) started using hyperledger for its US- Canada interbank settlements in September 2017.
The “umbrella strategy” of hyperledger aids development and supports a range of business blockchain technologies, interfaces, libraries, framework and application. Hyperledger hosts the below projects:
- Hyperledger Sawtooth – this is a modular blockchain suite which uses a new consensus algorithm called Proof of Elapsed Time (POeT) and developed by Intel. Hyperledger Sawtooth builds, deploys and runs distributed ledgers that provide digital records that are maintained without implementation or central authority.
- Hyperledger Fabric –this allows components such as membership services and consensuses to be plug and play. It is designed to develop high scaling blockchain applications with a flexible degree of permissions and develop applications or solutions with a modular architecture. Hyperledger fabric supports container technology to host smart contracts called “chaincode” that involves the application logic of the system. It is a project that is led by IBM.
- Hyperledger Iroha – Iroha was initially contributed by Soramitsu, Hitachi, Colu and NTT Data. It is designed to be easy and simple to incorporate into infrastructural projects that require distributed ledger technology.
- Hyperledger Burrow – this hyperledger project provides a modular blockchain client with a permissioned smart contract interpreter partially developed to the specification of the Ethereum Virtual Machine (EVM). Hyperledger Burrow was originally contributed by Monax and Co- sponsored Intel.
Hyperledger has several tool projects besides the above named Projects. The aim of these tools is to make easy and effective access and development of blockchains. The tools include:
- Hyperledger Cello – this tool aims at bringing the demand “as-a-service” deployment model to the blockchain ecosystem to reduce the effort required for creating, managing and terminating blockchains. Hyperledger Cello was initially contributed by IBM, with Soramitsu, Intel and Huawei being the sponsors.
- Hyperledger Explorer – this Hyperledger tool is designed to create a user friendly web application. It was initially contributed by IBM, DTCC and Intel. Hyperledger explorer can view any relevant information stored in the ledger.
- Hyperledger Indy – Hyperledger Indy tool is a distributed ledger that was purposely built for decentralized identity. It is a collection of tools, libraries and reusable components for digital identities rooted on blockchains.
Hyperledger being open source collaborative software ensures that there is longevity, transparency, interoperability and support that are required to bring blockchain technologies forward to mainstream commercial adoption. Hyperledger project is all about community of software developers that build blockchain frameworks and platforms.