As Sally Davies of the Financial Times explained it, ‘blockchain is to bitcoin what the internet is to email. A big electronic system, on top of which you can build applications.

Currency is just one.’ (Jack Guez/AFP/Getty Images) Ramona PringleTechnology Columnist Ramona Pringle is an associate professor in the RTA School of Media and director of the Transmedia Zone at Ryerson University.

She is a CBC contributor who writes and reports on the relationship between people and technology. (Note: CBC does not endorse and is not responsible for the content of external links.) Digital evangelists believe that the blockchain could revolutionize everything from legal contracts to the way we use the internet.

The trouble is, most people still don’t really know what the blockchain actually is, aside from being associated with the hyped — and volatile — digital currency bitcoin. Given the current cryptocurrency market, that has made blockchain a hot commodity. Case in point: A few months ago, N.Y.

beverage maker Long Island Iced Tea Corp. renamed itself the Long Blockchain Corp. Despite the fact that the company planned to continue producing pre-mixed iced teas, the new moniker made its stock skyrocket and even earned it a feature in Vanity Fair. The beverage maker isn’t the only low-tech company profiting off of their new blockchain branding. Shares in SkyPeople Fruit Juice, which produces packaged food products, rose more than 215 per cent after it renamed itself Future FinTech Group, despite little evidence of any real adoption of blockchain technology. Read more from…

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