Professor Latif Ladid, Chair of the 5G World Alliance and President of the IPv6 Forum, recently spoke at the my2cents Blockchain Developer Conference in Istanbul. His presentation focused on how IPv6 can empower end-to-end worldwide blockchain and why a big technological shift is about to occur.
Ladid opened his presentation by asking whether the members of the audience possessed an IP address. He used this as an opener to explain the current state of the Internet with IPv4 and its limited address space. In this version of the Internet, telecom services grant their customers temporary addresses in what is called Network Address Translation (NAT).
Instead of having their own addresses the telecom industry assigns its customers common addresses that are used by many others instead of assigning them their own addresses. While the issue of IP addresses and network addresses may seem technical and mundane to some, it is essential to understanding the Internet’s inner workings and the decisions that shape its future.
Currently, telecom industries and other third-party services like big tech companies and platforms dominate communication on the Internet, not only setting the rules and controlling and censoring communication but also making profits off of it. Ladid describes this as a lower-grade version of the Internet, although a much better version sits ready to be adopted.
Enter the concept of a decentralised Internet, built on the foundation of blockchain technology. Ladid outlined how IPv6 and blockchain, as realised in BSV, have the goal of giving back control to endpoints and empowering users to become sovereign. This means that users will be able to create their own websites without having to rely on centralised platforms and without having to buy domain name system (DNS) services.
To enable this, Ladid described the need for a vast amount of address space as IPv6 offers auto-configuration, which will be achieved through the use of IPv6 addresses. IPv6 will also allow for more efficient communication through the use of multicast, which will enable people to talk to each other directly, connecting devices without relying on any third party. This saves bandwidth, and costs and also offers much higher security.
Ladid compared this model to communication via phone numbers, where users can call anyone they want without a third party involved. The same should be true for the Internet. Users should be able to create their own networks and communicate with each other without relying on platforms like Facebook.
Another benefit of IPv6 and blockchain-based communication is data sovereignty. IPv6 and blockchain will allow users to have control over their own data and privacy. The current model is flawed, as it allows companies to profit from user data without giving users a choice and without giving them a share of the profits.
Additionally, IPv6 provides better support for security protocols, such as IPsec, which can help to ensure the integrity and confidentiality of data transmitted over the Internet.
Ladid further pointed out how blockchain and IPv6 can increase efficiency in many processes. A prime example of this is global supply chains. For example, in the global food supply chain up to 30% of food is lost due to shipping or mishandling. The President of the IPv6 Forum noted that middlemen in the supply chain happen to manipulate prices and quality, causing farmers and producers to suffer.
To address this, Ladid suggested creating a direct line of communication between producers and end-users, which can be achieved through blockchain technology. Currently, many services rely on the BSV blockchain that offers solutions for this particular use case like MintBlue or MetaStreme.
Latif Ladid continued to give a brief overview of the complex and difficult history of the Internet and how various factors contributed to delaying the adoption of IPv6. The president of the IPv6 forum alluded that the current state of the Internet is reminiscent of a communist system, where the voice and power are held by the big players, and there is little room for others to influence the direction of the technology. This same sentiment, according to Ladid, is also applicable to blockchain technology.
Ladid also notes the bad reputation that many so-called cryptocurrencies bring to blockchain technology. These put the focus on the wrong priorities and, by collapsing, hinder the adoption of blockchain as a promising technology for the future.
Ladid noted how it makes sense to implement IPv6 and blockchain in tandem in the form of the BSV Blockchain. Above all, similarities in technical details contribute to the fact that an adoption of both technologies is particularly beneficial.
In conclusion, Ladid explained how important it is for the state and legislation to get involved in the adoption process. A positive example of this is India, which has decided to implement IPv6 nationwide and to allocate its citizens their own addresses free of charge.