MIT Media Lab uses to issue digital certificates blockchain
MIT Media Lab has announced the release of version 1 of its code for Digital Certificates Project that involves a set of tools to issue, display, and verify digital credentials using the Bitcoin blockchain and the Mozilla Open Badges specification. It is an incubation project by the Media Lab Learning Initiative and Learning Machine that builds an ecosystem for creating, sharing, and verifying blockchain-based educational certificates.
Digital certificates are registered on the Bitcoin blockchain, cryptographically signed, and tamper proof. MIT Media Lab made the announcement in a blog titled “What we learned from designing an academic certificates system on the blockchain”.
Explaining the design of the certification architecture, it said:
“A certificate issuer signs a well-structured digital certificate and stores its hash within a blockchain transaction. A transaction output is assigned to the recipient”.
The digital certificates architecture comprises of three repositories – Cert-schema, Cert-issuer, and Cert-viewer, which work together to broadcast the data into the Bitcoin blockchain.
As to why it preferred Bitcoin blockchain over Ethereum, it said that Bitcoin has been the most tested and reliable blockchain to date and likely to be around for a good while longer. However, it said that the solution is not just limited to one particular blockchain. “Our solution is not locked to one particular blockchain–it would be easy to also start publishing our credentials to other blockchains, but for most of what we want to do, the functionality of the Bitcoin blockchain continues to be sufficient”, it said.
The blog post emphasized that version 1 is for experimental users and researchers and going forward the team will work on the next version which will involve some architectural changes, as well as focus on documentation and deployment, to make it easier for other institutions to get started.
“Version 1 of our tools is intended as a useful starting point for other researchers and experimental projects. For institutions looking to roll out digital credential systems, we recommend waiting for version 2. We have already started a pretty fundamental redesign, and we will also release future versions of the project under the same MIT open-source license”, the blog post reads.
The website mentions the Media Lab issued digital certificates or for your nicknamed “coins”, to Media Lab alumni who attended the Lab’s 30th anniversary in October 2015. Also, Learning Machine issued digital certificates to all of its employees.
Source: MIT Media Lab
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