Microsoft Introduces Project Bletchley – New Project to Roll Out Blockchain-as-a-Service (BAAS)


Microsoft’s Marley Gray – Director, BizDev & Strategy, Cloud and Enterprise – has unveiled Project Bletchley and elements of Blockchain born in the Microsoft Cloud in a fresh blog post.

Project Bletchley is a vision for Microsoft to deliver Blockchain as a Service (BaaS) that is open and flexible for all platforms, partners and customers. It addresses common themes from early adopters of Blockchain across industries, including platform openness is a requirement; includes features like identity, key management, privacy, security, operations management and interoperability need to be integrated; enhances performance, scale, support and stability; and offers consortium Blockchains, which are members-only, permissioned networks for consortium members to execute contracts.

Introduced in Project Bletchley are two new concepts: Blockchain middleware and cryptlets.

Blockchain middleware will provide core services functioning in the cloud, like identity and operations management, in addition to data and intelligence services like analytics and machine learning. These technologies will ensure the secure, immutable operation that Blockchain provides, at the same time, deliver the business intelligence and reporting capabilities business leaders and regulators demand. Newly developed middleware will work in tandem with existing Azure services, like Active Directory and Key Vault, and other Blockchain ecosystem technologies, to deliver a holistic platform and set of solutions.

Cryptlets, a new building block of Blockchain technology, will enable secure interoperation and communication between Microsoft Azure, ecosystem middleware and customer technologies. Cryptlets function when additional information is needed to execute a transaction or contract, such and date and time. They will become a critical component of sophisticated Blockchain systems, enabling all technology to work together in a secure, scalable way.

Project Bletchley is a vision for Microsoft to deliver Blockchain as a Service (BaaS) that is open and flexible for all platforms, partners and customers. We’re thrilled to be on this journey with the Blockchain community, and are looking forward to helping transform the way we think about and do business today.

Check out the details of Project Bletchley in this whitepaper.

Open source technologies will serve as the building blocks for this ecosystem. Supporting open standards for protocol level implementations of Peer-2-Peer/networking, consensus, database and virtual machines are key in establishing trust within the larger ecosystem and accelerates innovation.

Azure will remain open to all protocols, consensus algorithms, databases and virtual machines. However, Bletchley will introduce a modular framework allowing for you to choose what combination of technologies best fits the business domain you are trying to address. Because each Blockchain/distributed ledger will have all nodes on that network agree, there will by default be many ledgers.

Public Blockchains like Bitcoin, Ethereum and others will define their protocol stacks, however consortium (new way to refer to member/private/permissioned Blockchains) distributed ledgers will define their networks based on the business they are addressing.