Developers from Streamr, the cloud-based platform that reacts to events in realtime data streams, are asking big questions about the future of the blockchain ecosystem. How will data be shared, and will it be possible to create a decentralized immutable record of data from a variety of sources, like stock exchanges, social media, and Internet of Things, by integrating the information with a blockchain? Streamr hopes to answer these questions affirmatively, and has turned to the US stock exchange to provide a demonstration.
A blog post from Streamr details the latest demo. By directly adding a small fraction of stock market data (S&P 500 Index stocks) onto a blockchain, its executable distributed code contract (EDCC) aggregated the information into 15-minute open, high, low, close “bars” by stock symbol. The EDCC then sent the data to the Rinkeby testnet, and posted it in a single transaction to reduce spam. Streamr kept the data pool small in this demo due to constraints, namely excessive gas costs, and lack of blockchain scalability.
See the live canvas code here.
Prior to this recent stock market test, Streamr also made good impressions when it showed another use-case for integrating realtime data with blockchain technology. At EDCON in Paris, France, in March 2017, Streamr founder Henri Pihkala presented a successful demonstration using EDCCs to connect a Helsinki public transport system to the Ethereum platform using Streamr tools. Streamr connected to the Helsinki live data stream and visualized the data on a city map that contained the position of every tram. Next an EDCC, dubbed “PayByUse,” disbursed payments in Wei (the smallest increment of Ether) for every 10 meters travelled. The pay-by-use demo, which was deployed in about five minutes, cultivated positive interest and feedback.
Before the Helsinki tram example, Streamr developers were unsure with the manner in which their platform would take shape. It was late in 2016 when the blockchain community began to flourish in Helsinki and when use of the Ethereum blockchain began to crystalize. The Streamr developers found aspects of Ethereum (such as its decentralized and trustless nature, immutability of data, and Ether as gas) to be in line with their goals, and made the decision to build atop the Ethereum model.
Streamr's latest stock market demonstration provides another clear glimpse at how decentralized data transmission may find future applications. What's more, Streamr developers admit they haven't even scratched the surface. Ethereum's numerous protocols and multi-chain scaling schemes have yet to be explored by the Streamr team.
Future Streamr projects include a joint effort with Oraclize, a data carrier for decentralized apps, to enable EDCCs to access Streamr's data on a “per-request basis” and with blockchain interoperability. Those interested in following Streamr’s progress can follow it on Twitter, or join the team’s Slack channel.