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Blockchain Explained: What Is A Blockchain?

The blockchain explained

You’ve probably heard a lot about the Ethereum blockchain. In this article we will explain what a blockchain is. We also have an article and video about gas fees, click here for the article and here for the video. We also cover mining in another article.

Blockchain Explained: What Is A Blockchain?

A blockchain is a distributed database that is shared among computer network nodes. A blockchain, like a database, stores information electronically in digital format.

Blockchains are best known for their critical role in cryptocurrency systems such as Bitcoin in keeping a secure and decentralized record of transactions. The blockchain’s innovation is that it ensures the fidelity and security of a data record. It generates trust without the need for a trusted third party.

The way data is structured differs significantly between a traditional database and a blockchain. A blockchain collects information in groups known as blocks, which hold sets of data. When a block’s storage capacity is reached, it is closed and linked to the previous filled block. It then forms a data chain known as the blockchain.

All new information that follows that newly added block is compiled into a newly formed block. This block is then added to the chain once it is complete.

A database typically organizes its data into tables, whereas a blockchain, as the name suggests, organizes its data into chunks (blocks). These blocks are then strung together. Once it’s implemented decentralizedly, this data structure creates an irreversible time line of data.

When a block is completed, it is set in stone and becomes a part of this timeline. After a block is added to the chain, it is given an exact time stamp.

Key blockchain take aways:

  • Blockchain is a type of shared database that differs from traditional databases in the way data is stored; blockchains store data in blocks that are then linked together using cryptography.
  • As new data arrives, it is added to a new block. Once the block has been filled with data, it is chained onto the previous block, resulting in the data being chained together in chronological order.
  • A blockchain can store various types of data, but its most common use to date has been as a transaction ledger.
  • In the case of Bitcoin, blockchain is used in a decentralized manner, so that no single person or group has control—rather, all users retain control collectively.

Populair blockchains:


I'm a staff writer for Mintpad, writing about investing, NFTs, markets, news, tech and whatever else falls through the cracks.