Ping Invests in Swirlds – A Next Generation Blockchain Alternative For “Global Single Logout” Dilemma

Blockchain Expo London 2019
Blockchain Partners

Ping Identity has announced a seed investment in Swirlds, a new platform to harness the power of the cloud without servers and solve the limitations of Blockchain technology.

Swirlds, building the trust layer for the internet, recently emerged from stealth and launched its hashgraph distributed consensus platform, free for public download and use by developers.

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The Swirlds hashgraph goes beyond Blockchain, providing new capabilities not previously possible with existing Blockchain technology. The hashgraph enforces fairness, which is needed for matching buyers and sellers in auctions and stock markets. It provides low latency, low cost, high throughput and high security, without requiring proof-of-work. Users quickly receive absolute proof of the consensus results of their actions. Developers can build smart contracts using the full power of Java, and go beyond contracts to build entire shared worlds. White paper on the Swirlds hashgraph consensus algorithm can be found here.

“Current stock markets are fair in matching buyers and sellers, but they require trust in a single company. Systems like Bitcoin have distributed trust, but do not ensure fair ordering of events. Swirlds provides the first distributed consensus platform that can be both fair and distributed, with high performance at scale,” said Dr. Leemon Baird, founder and CEO of Swirlds,.

“Developers can create the next generation of ledgers, markets, identity applications, games, cryptocurrencies, and social collaboration applications on the Swirlds platform. They can go beyond simply recording events, to creating shared worlds where community rules are enforced and smart contracts are executed, not limited to interpreted scripting languages, but with the full speed of Java. By providing this trust layer, Swirlds allows fairness and consensus to inherently co-exist, while ensuring that transactions in these applications happen efficiently and reliably.”

The Power of Blockchain… and its Limitations

Distributed consensus networks, like Blockchain, have gained recognition for their potential to solve the challenges with creating trust within peer-to-peer networks. The Bitcoin system – a payments system built on Blockchain technology – originally emerged to facilitate these transactions with this new form of distributed trust.

“The OpenID Foundation supports Ping Identity and Swirlds’ plan to submit its DSM system for standardization, and make its DSM software publicly available for review as an early reference implementation”

“Swirlds represents a huge technological breakthrough that can change the way distributed consensus communities function across a myriad industries and use cases,” said Patrick Harding, CTO, Ping Identity. “The new identity standard we’re developing solves the major challenges that identity professionals face in conducting and verifying session logout.”

Blockchain’s distributed consensus algorithm can generate distributed trust, but it has a number of limitations. If the members of the Blockchain community are untrusted, then a proof-of-work mechanism is often required to ensure the community comes to a consensus. This is inefficient, introducing high lag time and wasted resources. Further, Blockchain doesn’t provide trusted timestamps or proof of receipt.

“The real impact of Blockchain was always going to be its inspiration. Blockchain ‘squared the circle’ in digital currency and that was amazing. But the first generation algorithm is not efficient or practical for other applications,” said Steve Wilson, VP and Principal Analyst, Constellation Research. “What the community needs is real research and development that will begin to solve these challenges — not solutions that arbitrarily jam the Blockchain algorithm into every pet problem. This collaboration of Swirlds and Ping Identity is fresh, focused R&D and a very significant advancement for moving Identity forward.”

Next Generation Distributed Consensus Technology Enables Global Sign-Off

Swirlds hashgraph is a next-generation distributed consensus platform that has huge advantages over existing systems, like Blockchain, central servers or leader-based systems. This is because it uniquely provides three important properties: fairness, distributed trust and resilience to Denial of Service attacks, without the need for inefficient proof of work. Potential applications for the Swirlds hashgraph expand far beyond the financial industry — from cloud applications, to supply chain logistics, social collaboration and multiplayer gaming.

When applied to identity management, the Ping DSM system built on the Swirlds hashgraph platform reduces risk by giving IT organizations the ability to globally sign off users, for example in instances of employee terminations and lost or stolen devices. This unprecedented standard enables global session logout for all active Single Sign-On and Application Sessions across web and mobile apps, independent of the identity protocol being used. It also generates a cryptographic timestamp and proof of receipt, providing the certainty that session commands have been received.

“Swirlds is excited and grateful to have a visionary partner in Ping Identity,” said Baird.  “The DSM system they are building on top of the Swirlds hashgraph distributed consensus platform will allow their customers to achieve unprecedented control within their identity systems. We look forward to working with Ping and their customers to help them adopt a fundamentally new standard for identity.”

Supporting Technical Papers

About Richard Kastelein

Founder and publisher of industry publication Blockchain News (EST
2015), a partner at ICO services collective Token.Agency
($750m+ and 90+ ICOs and STOs), director of education company
Blockchain Partners
(Oracle Partner) and ICO event organiser
at leading industry event CryptoFinancing (Europe's first ICO event now
branded Tokenomicon)
– Vancouver native Richard Kastelein is an award-winning publisher,
innovation executive and entrepreneur. He sits on the advisory boards
of some two dozen Blockchain startups and has written over 1500
articles on Blockchain technology and startups at Blockchain News and
has also published pioneering articles on ICOs in Harvard Business Review and Venturebeat.  Irish Tech News put him in the top
10 Token Architects in Europe.

Kastelein has an Ad Honorem - Honorary Ph.D. and is Chair Professor of
at China's first Blockchain University in Nanchang
at the Jiangxi Ahead Institute of Software and Technology. In 2018 he
was invited to and attended University of Oxford's Saïd Business School
for Business Automation 4.0 programme. Chevalier (Knight) - Ordre des
Arts et des Technologies at Crypto Chain University and an Advisory
Board Member of International Decentralized Association Of
Cryptocurrency And Blockchain (IDABC) as well as Advisory Board Member
at U.S. Blockchain Association. Over a half a decade experience judging
and rewarding some 1000+ innovation projects as an EU expert for the
European Commission's SME Instrument programme as a startup assessor
and as a startup judge for the UK government's Innovate UK division.

Kastelein has spoken (keynotes & panels) on Blockchain
technology in Amsterdam, Antwerp, Barcelona, Beijing, Brussels,
Bucharest, Dubai, Eindhoven, Gdansk, Groningen, the Hague, Helsinki,
London (5x), Manchester, Minsk, Nairobi, Nanchang, San Mateo, San
Francisco, Santa Clara (2x), Shanghai, Singapore (3x), Tel
Aviv,  Utrecht, Venice,  Visakhapatnam, Zwolle and
Zurich.  His network is global and extensive.

He is a Canadian (Dutch/Irish/English/Métis) whose writing career has
ranged from the Canadian Native Press (Arctic) to the Caribbean
& Europe. He's written occasionally for Harvard Business
Review, Wired, Venturebeat, The Guardian and, and his work
and ideas have been translated into Dutch, Greek, Polish, German and
French. A journalist by trade, an entrepreneur and adventurer at heart,
Kastelein's professional career has ranged from political publishing to
TV technology, boatbuilding to judging startups, skippering yachts to
marketing and more as he's travelled for nearly 30 years as a Canadian
expatriate living around the world. In his 20s, he sailed around the
world on small yachts and wrote a series of travel articles called,
"The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Seas' travelling by hitching rides on
yachts (1989) in major travel and yachting publications. He currently
lives in Groningen, Netherlands where he's raising three teenage
daughters with his wife and sailing partner, Wieke Beenen.

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