The National Research Council of Canada (NRC) has launched a blockchain explorer built on Ethereum. According to a news release, the organization said the blockchain explorer application, dubbed Catena, was developed by Bitaccess and will be hosted by its Industrial Research Assistance Program on the InterPlanetary File System (IPFS).
This makes the hosted data always accessible and immutable, as it's not organized in one location, which could subject it to site failure or access issues. According to Bitaccess, the explorer application is similar to a search engine, and it allows users to instantly "search the Ethereum blockchain" for "published grants and contribution data" stored on the network through Catena.
Moe Adham, co-founder of Bitaccess, in a statement said, “We built the Catena Blockchain Suite as a simple, low risk, application for institutions to get introduced to blockchain technology. So far the reception has been terrific”.
Using the IPFS function, users will be afforded a "peer-to-peer method of storing and sharing data" in a distributed method that makes them "unalterable" and preserved "far into the future" long after the original web host has gone offline.
The NRC statement read in part:
"These are early days, but NRC IRAP's experiments with blockchain are expected to provide constructive insight into the potential for this technology and how it may be used for more open and transparent operations for public programs."
Earlier this year, the NRC launched the Canadian government's first live trial of public blockchain technology with the aim of building a transparent administration of government grants and contributions.
At the time of the launch, the government was able to use the blockchain to publish information on "new and amended Contribution Agreements with firms in real time." Adham says his company's goal is to help institutions "become fully transparent" and help constituents participate in the “verification and validation of public information.”
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