IBM has provided 44,000 open source lines of blockchain code to help developers incorporate the technology into their work.
The initiative – which the technology giant has dubbed "blockchain as a service" – has made lines of blockchain code available to the Linux Foundation’s Hyperledger Project, an open source collaborative platform designed to advance blockchain technology.
The firm hopes this will help developers more easily build secure distributed ledgers.
“In just a few short months, IBM’s vision for making blockchain a powerful new business solution across multiple industries is becoming a reality, as our clients begin piloting innovative new code, services and z Systems optimised for distributed ledgers,” said Arvind Krishna, senior vice-president of IBM Research.
“These advancements are making it easier for developers to move from understanding the potential of blockchain, to actually using it to change their business processes in powerful new ways.”
Blockchain is a type of peer-to-peer distributed database that stores transactional data, acting as a secure ledger of records. It is currently very commonly used to monitor the use of digital currency bitcoin.
IBM launched a blockchain service on its IBM Cloud to help organisations create and manage blockchain networks which will act as a back end to distributed ledger applications, so developers can properly test blockchain networks and integrate DevOps tools to help build and run blockchain applications through IBM Cloud.
IBM integrates IoT functionality
The IBM Watson IoT Platform will also allow data from devices such as RFID tags or barcode scanners to be collected and used as part of a blockchain ledger, making it easier to update and share information about internet of things (IoT) events in an organisation.
The technology firm aims to open a number of IBM Garages across the world, in London, New York, Singapore and Tokyo, to develop, design and build blockchain applications for business purposes, as well as provide consulting services for banking, financial services and logistics firms hoping to use the technology
Moiz Kohari, executive vice-president of group head of technology innovation, London Stock Exchange Group, said open sourcing blockchain technology will help push the development of the ledger platform forward.
Kohari said: “We believe this technology has the potential to drive change across the industry but will need to be developed in partnership with customers and industry participants under an open source approach.”