Blockchain is one of the hottest technological revolutions of our time. This digital ledger allows transactions to be recorded through a network of nodes. Each node is a device, like a computer, from users around the world that logs information about the transactions taking place and decentralizes data.
Many companies are forming around the idea of blockchain and using the ledger to launch unique digital projects. However, many of these applications start on a high note only to quickly fall off because of inefficient testing procedures (QA testing) along the way. This is a reason to consider QA outsourcing as a way to guarantee projects get tested and move smoothly along their entire life cycles.
Quality assurance testing (QA testing) allows companies to ensure the right processes are in place from the start and during development. This is important in blockchain-backed development because blockchain operates in a unique way and its implementation is not easy. Software needs to use blockchain effectively in order not to be a wasted effort.
A Brief History & Explanation of Blockchain
Blockchain was originally designed by Satoshi Nakamoto. It was created as a decentralized ledger to record transactions for Bitcoin (BTC), a finite cryptocurrency that is mined using high-powered servers.
The way it works is that the decentralized network of computers or nodes contains blocks of data. The cluster nodes and data are tied to a chain, hence blockchain, with cryptographic principles connecting the chain together for transactions to be recorded on a ledger.
Because the blockchain is not tied to a single entity, company, bank, financial institution or government, it is referred to as a democratized system. The system makes sure that the data is always available and recorded in a unique fingerprint and unchanging over time.
The high tech community was able to find blockchain uses beyond just digital transaction record-keeping tied to Bitcoin and. Blockchain morphed into something much greater and people continue to find uses for it in new ventures and industries.
Many blockchain projects today are tied to crypto-assets, particularly Bitcoin. such as Bitcoin-backed coffee makers or similar utilities. You can get a taste of some of the various ideas here.
However, there are projects that are not tied to cryptocurrency. An example is a blockchain signalling system that defends computing systems against DDoS attacks by using blockchain to signal potential attacks and keep domains safe.
Even though blockchain is secure and based on crypto principles, the information built on it is transparent and available for everyone to see. That is unless it is run as a private blockchain (difference explained here), in which permissions for access are needed.
When an individual creates a transaction with another, he or she creates a block that is verified by many other nodes or servers. This block is unique and becomes part of the chain recording the transaction. Because all the parties have access to the same data on a blockchain, alternations cannot be made without the others knowing.
Blockchain is attractive for companies today because it eliminates the need for a middle man or vendor in transactions between individuals. A middleman would include companies like PayPal or AirBnB that makes sure transactions between parties are legit and take a fee for such services. Blockchain allows for these transactions to occur without the third-party involved.
QA Testing for Blockchain
Blockchain is an interesting and emerging technology that needs to be understood and properly tested before implementing projects that make use of it. For one, because of its decentralized nature, each transaction that is added to the chain has to be replicated ensuring each node matches.
This means that each node doesn’t just contain bits and pieces of information, but also the exact copy. Meanwhile, transactions recorded on the ledger cannot be altered or changed and are available for all to see.
These aspects make testing useful to make sure projects make the best use of the digital ledger. Businesses are often unfamiliar with peer to peer (p2p) networking and even cryptocurrencies currently on the market. Thus, hiring experts will help blockchain projects succeed.
QA testing is useful for making sure blockchain-backed projects follow the company vision for the long term and succeed. Such testing allows companies to verify the smart contracts or functions of blockchain-backed projects. It also allows companies to identify performance bottlenecks and make certain the nodes on the system are up to par.
Because QA testing is based on the idea of testing all aspects of software as it is being developed, and not just during certain phases, it is perfectly suited for blockchain projects. This ensures defects in the ledger are minimized and a project meets the network’s and node system’s requirements.
By: Maciej Duraj
Image credit: Blockchain development via Panchenko Vladimir/Shutterstock