On February 14, 2019, the Enterprise Ethereum Alliance (EEA) announced the establishment of an office in China, and appointed Zhang Weijia, Vice President of Global Engineering and Technology of Wanwei Chain, as the general representative of the EEA in China. On April 12th, the first EEA China blockchain closed-door seminar was held in Beijing. At the meeting, Zhang Weijia introduced the organizational structure, technical route and alliance members of the EEA and answered many questions on the spot.
What is EEA? Why do you need EEA?
EEA is a standards organization promoted by alliance members. Members include more than 400 Internet, finance, technology and blockchain companies including Intel, JPMorgan Chase and Consensys. EEA hopes to build open source global enterprise standards based on Ethereum.
- Microsoft, Enterprise Ethereum Alliance (EEA): Launching a "Certified Classification" project for enterprises
1. EEA provides a unified platform for members to jointly develop global standards
The formulation of standards is usually driven by the government or by large enterprises. There is no uniform standard for the birth of the blockchain. Each public chain is designed and operated independently. Therefore, EEA hopes to provide a platform for members to jointly develop global standard specifications to promote greater marketization and economic scale of the blockchain.
2. Enterprise customers rely more on standards-based services
Corporate customers are different from consumers. When you come up with a solution, the first problem is how to gain trust. If you have the industry's recognized qualifications and standards, it will lower the threshold of trust and improve the efficiency of communication. EEA will also launch a certification program to certify corporate products and services that meet standards.
3. Promote interoperability of products and services
How to improve this interoperability, so that the chain and the chain can be connected to form an era of million-chain interconnection? If we have a common standard and a common norm, and everyone follows this standard, it is possible to realize this idea.
We know that Ethereum as a public chain, the code is open source, then why do you need an organization such as EEA to develop relevant standards? The key lies in the transformation of the identity of the object, that is, what changes have been made to the Ethereum by the enterprise users for the blockchain.
The public chain does not require permission, anyone can join, the nodes are equal, and both have the right to read and write data. The public chain runs the node through economic incentives. The advantage is anti-censorship and decentralization. The alliance chain requires permission, and the mutual trust between the enterprise nodes. The advantage is that it does not consume too much resources, and it is easy to do the system's adaptive evaluation.
Zhang Weijia said that the current EEA mainly serves the enterprise users of the alliance chain. Then it means that it needs to be modified based on the Ethereum public chain.
There are several cores for an enterprise architecture. First, the network must be an enterprise-level network. Secondly, tools such as wallets must use hardware to store private keys. Then there is Private transactions, and the current Ethereum operation is very insecure. By adding these things, you can ensure that your business is safe, fast, and scalable when it runs.
"At the end of this year, the company's Ethereum standard will be finalized, and the test network will be available tomorrow." Zhang Weijia revealed.
EEA corporate members and industry distribution
Up to now, EEA members include more than 400 Internet, finance, technology and blockchain companies including Intel, JPMorgan Chase and Consensys. But Zhang Weijia said that in the EEA, the weights of these companies are the same, and everyone can propose the standards equally.
As shown, 46% of EEA members are currently distributed in North America, 31% in Europe, and 19% in Asia. The industrial structure covers a wide range, 24% are banks or financial enterprises, cryptocurrency (cryptocurrency) and blockchain (blockchain) enterprises account for 17% and 5% respectively, do not know how to define and divide. Non-profit organizations account for 15%, and academic institutions account for 11%.
This is the organizational structure of the EEA, which needs to be particularly emphasized as “special interest groups”. Currently, it has been established including artificial intelligence and blockchain, advertising media, chemical and chemical, education and scientific research, financial services, medical insurance, real estate, and supply. Chain and communication, etc.
Zhang Weijia said: "If you are interested, three or five companies can organize a special interest group to clarify the standards that are closely related to the internal interests of their own industry and make proposals to the EEA."
“Hyperledger and EEA are not competitive? I am often asked this question, but it is not. We strongly encourage cooperation with EEA members. The current relationship includes Hyperledger, Distributed Identity Foundation. (Dif), IADB bank. We want to expand the scope of bilateral engagement between our agencies, while allowing other agencies to participate in EEA activities, including participation in technical working groups, special attention groups, and access and access to EEA materials and resources. Zhang Weijia said.
Next, a brief introduction to the EEA's operational process. Technical working groups and special interest groups collect enterprise needs and feed them back to the technical working group. The technical working group translates them into technical reference architectures. As the discussion deepens, standard specifications are formed. When the specifications are approved, the test network is generated. Certification terms.
It's worth noting that there is no code-related question here, because EEA believes that the code is owned by the enterprise, so the EEA does not provide code, but only sets standards, which is the biggest difference between EEA and Hyperledger.
On-site questioning highlights
1. As a regional organization, how does EEA China maintain effective communication with EEA headquarters and other national branches? How to reach consensus when multiple parties participate in the development of the framework? Who is the leader?
Zhang Weijia: When I talk about this issue, I will think of three EEA regional organizations in China, Japan, and South Korea. If you want to form Asian standards, it may not be so easy. On the one hand, the current framework was developed by the Technical Specifications Working Group, and I believe that standards can be broken up, first forming regional standards. On the other hand, I think it is a priority to reach a consensus with North America or the EEA headquarters because of the lower barriers to language communication.
2. At present, there are a lot of blockchain alliances at home and abroad, including international R3, super-books, China's gold chain alliances, etc., and many blockchain enterprises actually join these alliance organizations at the same time. What is the unique positioning of EEA? What is the core appeal to be solved?
Zhang Weijia: Enterprises must choose the most suitable alliance. EEA is also very clear about developing collaborative relationships. Don't do repetitive things. We just need to set standards. Unlike superbooks, they ask for source code. If the company wants to promote standard setting and does not want to come up with the source code, then you can choose EEA. The enterprise Ethereum does not do the public chain. What we have to consider is what companies need to add when using Ethereum. Today, if you take Ethereum to the company, it will not work.
3. In your opinion, the biggest obstacle during the transition from the public chain Ethereum to the commercial Ethereum is the lack of standards?
Zhang Weijia: It should be said that the formulation of standards is the biggest boost to commercial use. Because Vitalik is not a business, he is a technical expert, so it is difficult for him to consider what the company needs. Without a standard, there is no enterprise. The first is to have demand, the second is to have standards, and the third is to have certification.
4. What is the relationship between the Ethereum Alliance and the Ethereum?
Zhang Weijia: The enterprise Ethereum Alliance actually received a lot of support from the Taifang Development Studio ConsenSys. The Ethereum Alliance also tried its best to have a good relationship with the Ethereum Foundation. The two should complement each other. Vitalik may not have accepted it. But ConsenSys is very supportive because they don't make corporate standards.
5. In the end, when the company is implemented, is the technology we use directly related to Ethereum?
Zhang Weijia: Now the standard of Ethereum, the enterprise level must be compatible with the public chain, which means that your smart contract can run on the Ethereum, and it must be able to run on the Ethereum, but we have expanded more.
6. Through cross-chaining, is the main focus of the realization of Wanlian Internet?
Zhang Weijia: Cross-chain is part of it, in addition to the pursuit of scalability, speed and privacy.
7. The standards are not only between enterprises, but also between enterprises and governments. Do we have government resources to promote them?
Zhang Weijia: The EEA has nothing to do with the government. It is entirely a standard setting among enterprises.