The European Space Agency held it's annual Phi Week conference in Rome in November 2018.
The event was filled with fascinating, intellectual talks focusing on the latest developments in the field of earth observation and there was a strong focus on how new technologies can be used draw out as much utility as possible from the massive amounts of data now publicly available. A large amount of this focus was directed towards applications of artificial intelligence however there was an entire day of workshops and talks dedicated to blockchain and that is something our committee members just couldn't miss.
An audience of distinguished experts and researchers in the field of earth observation were discussing how research and data can be securely stored and shared using blockchain technology. We took part in some of the debate regarding whether public blockchains or permissible blockchains were ideal for several of the use cases described. There was also some great discussion around the future of blockchain and whether it is currently at a state where it can reach widespread adoption, issues such as low transactions per second in most implementations is being offset by state of the art methodologies such as sidechains and sharding meanwhilst zero knowledge proofs and trusted machines are adding even additional potential use cases of the technology.
All in all, our delegates learnt a lot and met some great people from the industry and we hope we can attend again next year.
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